IR with Bonanza

The view from the backseat is beautiful.

This past month I have flown five IR training flights in the Bonanza and logged a little over 6 hours of IFR time. The total hours flown in the Bonanza will be around 15 so things are really moving fast. IR check ride is just around the corner it seems!

Me with OH-BBL.

Me with OH-BBL.

First three IR training flights consisted basically of the same things we did on the first two VFR flights – stalls, turns, recoveries. Only this time we did them wearing a visor that blocked our view outside so we could only fly by the instruments. We use the visor on the IR training flights to create zero visibility, as if we were flying in cloud. The weather has been so great lately that this is really needed.

Me and Lauri getting ready to go.

Me and Lauri getting ready to go.

Tuomo making turns wearing a visor.

Tuomo making turns wearing a visor.

We also flew with ADI being “inoperative”, and did climbs, climbing turns, descents and descending turns. IFR flying is quite calm in a way when it comes to piloting and with ADI inoperative all the movements should become even more calm. At first when the ADI goes out, it feels hard to even keep the plane straight and level, but it’s really quickly that you can get a grasp of it. We also practised this in the trainer before so it wasn’t completely new. Of course the real plane is somewhat different to fly. For example the power setting in the trainer is always the same. In the real plane it varies by individual plane as well as with weather conditions day by day. So for example keeping the correct speed always needs more attention in the real plane. This adds to the degree of difficulty when flying with a partial panel.


The last two flights we moved on to doing approaches. Those we practised a lot in the trainer, but doing them in the real plane felt quite new again. Mainly because of the reasons mentioned above. It’s a whole new thing to get the right speeds and find the right power setting for a perfect glide slope.


Aleksi making a VOR approach to Pori runway 30.

Runway in sight.

Runway in sight.

So far I’ve done approaches only in Pori and the approaches available here. The NDB approach is not available at EFPO anymore since last fall, but here I’ve done ILS, VOR and RNAV approaches as well as a circling approach. Circling approach is an extension of an instrument approach where you make the approach to one runway and then circle the airfield by visual to make the landing to the opposite runway. This could happen for example when the weather requires an instrument approach, let’s say due to a low cloud base, and the instrument approach is only available to one runway, but the tail wind is too strong to land on that runway. Then you can make the approach to that runway and circle to land on the opposite with the head wind.

As I’ve said flying the real thing is somewhat more challenging, but it’s so much fun! The only negative thing is that we only have those 15 hours in the real thing. They will be over so quickly. But right now enjoying every minute of it! Next week we’re supposed to visit another airfield with Bonanza for the first time and do some approaches there.

Dreaming in the backseat.

Dreaming in the backseat.

The trainer flights are almost done too. We only have a couple of them left. We have done different cross-country flights including systems malfunctions and other failures. We flew to Sweden and visited Sundsvall (ESNN), Åre-Östersund (ESNZ) and Umeå (ESNU) airfields. We’ve also practised AFIS operation and departing and arriving on an airfield that is closed. And one of the most interesting trainer flights was a flight to Helsinki (EFHK), which we will also do for real soon enough. I’m looking forward to that!

One more posing with the Bonanza!

One more posing with the Bonanza!

Enjoy the rest of the pictures taken from the backseat of the Bonanza!

Yyteri beach and Pori harbour.

Yyteri beach and Pori harbour.

Calm seas.

Beautiful calm seas.

Color palette of the skies.

Morning color palette.

6 responses to “IR with Bonanza

  1. Nina,

    You are really moving along. So happy for you. Remember when doing approaches to different airports with real weather. The key is that the airplane doesn’t know or care what the weather is and an approach is an approach is an approach. They all might start differently but they end the same, land or missed approach. 99% of the time in real life you land and 99% of the time in the simulator you will go missed approach.

    Also don’t let anyone ever tell you that the sim flies just like the airplane. Never does and it never will. I could give you techniques for IFR flying but it will just be a repeat of what your IPs tell you. You are doing great and you have the right attitude because you are looking at all of this like it is an adventure and it is fun.

  2. Thanks again for a great post! The Bonanza seems like a wonderful thing to fly and it has been really interesting reading your experiences and thoughts about it. I think you can consider yourself lucky to still be able to experience them as they are being replaced soon. Do you know if you’ll get a chance to fly the new Diamonds too?

    2 weeks ago my childhood dream also came true as I finally got accepted to FINAA. I will be joining the SIO23 course in Pori in August as I already hold a PPL and the course had a slight shortage of students. I’m so glad the long process has finally come to an end in the best possible way.

    Anyway, thanks again Niina and keep having fun!

    • Thank you and big congrats to you!! :) That’s nice that you get to start so quickly. See you in Pori in August then!

      The latest I know is that we will fly the Diamonds too. But as I’ve learned in flying nothing is as sure as unsure until it’s done. :) Hopefully though!

  3. Hopefully they still taught you the NDB stuff? They might be getting phased out in the “first world” but you never know when you need those skills…

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