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Old 11-18-2005, 10:04 PM   #1  
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Joined APC: Nov 2005
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Smile the Cat & Duck method of IFR Flying

Today's flight age is an era highlighted with increasing emphasis on safety. Instrumentation in the cockpit and in the traffic control tower has reached new peaks of electronic perfection to assist the pilot during take-offs , flight , and landings. For whimsical contrast to these and other marvels of scientific flight engineering , it is perhaps opportune to remind pilots of the basic rules concerning the so-called Cat-and-Duck Method of Flight , just in case something goes wrong with any of these new-fangled flying instruments you find in today's aircraft.

Place a live cat on the cockpit floor. Because a cat always remains upright , he or she can be used in lieu of a needle and ball. Merely watch to see which way the cat leans to determine if a wing is low and , if so , which one.

The duck is used for the instrument approach and landing. Because any sensible duck will refuse to fly under instrument conditions, it is only necessary to hurl your duck out of the plane and follow her to the ground.

There are some limitations to the Cat-and-Duck Method, but by rigidly adhering to the following check list , a degree of success will be achieved.

Get a wide-awake cat. Most cats do not want to stand up at all, at any time. It may be necessary to get a large fierce dog in the cockpit to keep the cat at attention.
Make sure your cat is clean. Dirty cats will spend all their time washing. Trying to follow a cat licking itself usually results in a tight snap roll, followed by an inverted (or flat) spin. You can see this is very unsanitary.
Old cats are best. Young cats have nine lives, but an old used-up cat with only one life left has just as much to lose an you do and will therefore be more dependable.
Beware of cowardly ducks. If the duck discovers that you are using the cat to stay upright - or straight and level- she will refuse to leave without the cat. Ducks are no better on instruments than you are.
Be sure the duck has good eyesight. Nearsighted ducks sometimes will go flogging off into the nearest hill. Very short-sighted ducks will not realize they have been thrown out and will descend to the ground in a sitting position. This maneuver is quite difficult to follow in an airplane.
Use land-loving ducks. It is very discouraging to break out and find yourself on final approach for some farm pound in Iowa. Also, the farmers there suffer from temporary insanity when chasing crows off their corn fields and will shoot anything that flies.
Choose your duck carefully. It is easy to confuse ducks with geese because many water birds look alike. While they are very competent instrument flyers , geese seldom want to go in the same direction you do. If your duck heads off for the Okefenokee Swamp, you may be sure you have been given the goose.
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Old 12-21-2005, 08:31 PM   #2  
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wow, who thinks this stuff up
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Old 12-23-2005, 07:02 AM   #3  
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