James Alsip

by James Alsip (Lifetime Member) on February 8, 2012

SAFE #: S0000031

Website: http://www.dylanaviation.com

Hometown: Indiantown FL, United States

Home Airport: X58

Occupation: Flight Instructor

Education: Michigan State University

Pilot Certificates: commercial SEL and SES; instrument airplane, private MEL;glider

Airplanes Flying/Flown: Super Decathlon, Super Cub, Pitts

Educational Specialty: Aerobatics, Tailwheel and Emergency Maneuvers

Q & A

What drew you to aviation?: The romance and freedom of fllight. Flying the way it was back in the day. Located in cattle and citrus country, the 6300 ft grass runway at Indiantown Florida attracts pilots who enjoy traditional tailwheel airplanes. The surrounding uncontrolled airspace is ideal for aerobatic flight.

How long have you been involved in aviation education?: Since 2002

What's your favorite part of what you do in aviation education?: When the customer "gets it".

Do you have a memorable aviation experience you'd like to share?: My student and I began the second flight of my standard two lesson upset and spin recovery course with a "warm up" spin. The customer had learned spin recovery in the first flight, so I was relaxing in the back seat during the spin and thinking he should begin recovery "any time now". About that time I see his arms go fully extended above his head and he called out "I forgot!"
Yes, when he let go of the stick the airplane recovered from the spin. He was amazed and I thought it was funny.

Why did you join SAFE?: This organization is full of truly great aviation educators. I can only improve my effectiveness at teaching stick and rudder flying skills if I associate with such dedicated professionals.

What would you like to see change in aviation?: Flying needs to be fun and training new pilots must be cost effective. I also think that the current training system teaches pilots bad flying habits; habits that can get you killed.

Any suggestions on how the above might be accomplished?: Stick and rudder skills should be the only focus during early training and those skills should be emphasized during recurrent training. There are only two things that a pilot must do to fly well: 1) don't cause the airplane to stall 2) control the nose (yaw) with rudder.

Any accomplishments in, or noteworthy contributions to aviation and/or aviation education you'd like to mention?: My book:
Flying the Tailwheel Airplane; Key Points for Becoming a Great Stick and Rudder Pilot.

I have a weekly segment on www.GATVonLine.com titled Hangar Talk. The segment features flying tips, anecdotes and comments that promote flying for fun; flying with style; flying safely.

I have produced two training DVDs.
1 – Stall, Upset and Spin Recovery: Fundamental #1- Airplanes Don't Stall. Pilots Cause Airplanes to Stall.
2 – Rudder Fundamentals: Fundamental #2 – Recognize and Control Yaw

Who are your role models in aviation?: Bob Hoover, he told us to "just fly the thing".
But how do you do that? I turned to Sir Isaac Newton for direction. He told pilots: 1) Don't wiggle the stick – when you do stuff, other stuff happens. 2) Be patient! When you must do stuff, it takes time. 3) Don't mess with the Big Gorilla!

Anything else you'd like to add?: Flying should be fun. Look in the mirror. If you are smiling you just might be an aerobatic, tailwheel pilot. If flying is putting a smile on your face, tell your friends, tell everyone.

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