Responding to an AeroElectric-List message previously posted by: "bob noffs"
Hello Bob, Dare I post some heresy? Will the gummint sic its watch dogs on
me? Will the electromagnetic radiation purists on the list rise up in total
fury to slap me down? Well, I'll take a chance.
Suppose that the gummint, in its infinite wisdom, mandated that every
aircraft carry 3 pounds of butter and a container of maple syrup just in
case the survival situation after crashing resulted in a supply of pancakes
as the available food supply. Would you insist on carrying genuine maple
syrup or would an imitation be good enough for you?
Maybe an ELT is a little more useful than butter and maple syrup in a crash
situation, but I sure as hell wouldn't place my entire faith in being found
and rescued in one of the garden variety ELT's that we are mandated to
carry. My point is that obsessing over antenna ground plane details is
Nobody knows exactly what attitude their aircraft will be in when it
finishes crashing. The ELT antenna could end up pointing directly down at,
and a few inches from, the surface of the earth. How much difference would a
perfect ground plane, if one could construct one, make in that situation?
Here is my thinking:
1) To be legal, buy one of the garden variety ELT's that we are mandated to
carry. Install it securely in the proper location in the proper attitude
with regard to its deceleration sensor. Fasten on the wire antenna that came
with the ELT and don't obsess over ground planes or what the antenna's
attitude will be when you finish crashing. Go fly.
2) If you want to take some truly effective steps for rescue after crashing
you can, and probably should to the degree that you are concerned and
considering routes of flight, do some or all of the following.
2A) Always carry a hand held VHF comm radio with a battery supply that you
KNOW to be capable of extended operation.
2B) Always carry a cell phone with a battery supply that you KNOW to be
capable of extended operation.
2D) Carry a tough plastic container of water -- size your choice. My
experience with even short time rescued people is that they experienced an
almost mentally debilitating thirst shortly after crashing.
2E) Carry a knife of enough size and sturdiness to punch through / crack
your plastic windows and canopy.
I am sure that other posters will add their favorite / essential crash
survival items, but obsessing over these items falls into the same category
of time wasting like obsessing over ground planes. Take what you deem to be
reasonable precautions to be rescued after a survivable crash and then
proceed to fly worry and guilt free (and legal).
PS: If you have the bank account to afford one of the new 406 Mhz ELT's, go
<< hi all, I have several antennas to install. My elt requires a ground
plane. Tim at b and
c was very helpful with my questions but i question leads to 5 more. Is
any way around a ground plane for the elt? If not, any suggestions on how to
make it in my wood/cloth fuselage? At first i thought numerous strips of
copper way the way to go but that looks like just more fasteners. Can a very
thin sheet be laid down in the fuse. bottom? It wouldnt exactly be flat with
all the woodworking to go around.....skip.....Thanks in advance, bob noffs>>
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