Lightspeed’s Zulu ANR Headset with Bluetooth

Pam and I pulled up to the hangar to check on Betsy and we saw hangar neighbor Joe’s SUV parked next door. As we got out of our car, we saw Joe walking up. We got to talking about cell phones and Bluetooth, and then Joe said, “Well maybe you can help me figure something out.”

He had a question about Bluetooth technology and his new headset. I said, “Well, Pam will know all about that!” So there we stood at the back of Joe’s SUV and he shows us this new headset he bought recently. It is the Zulu Active Noise Reduction (ANR), Bluetooth-enabled headset by Lightspeed. Pam looked through the user’s manual and had the Bluetooth operating in no time. This allows you to receive and make calls on your cellphone without being connected to the headset with wires – it’s Bluetooth! Both Pam and I loved seeing this feature.  

Joe explained that you can also hook up a hardwire to your favorite music player and listen to music – and with the Front Row Center (FRC) technology in the headset, the quality of music simulates sitting “front and center” in an ampitheater. The leather foam ear cushions and top cushion made for a very comfortable and snug fit and they weight just under 14 ounces – a little heavier that Bose X’s 12 ounces.

Joe said he has yet to feel uncomfortable in them and they hold snuggly without shifting. They are even priced below the Bose X’s $999 price at $850, and with the added features, will certainly give Bose a run for their money. I have the Bose and love them, and am getting pressured to get a set for Pam.This has me rethinking Bose in favor of the Zulu – it has the immediately justifiable Bluetooth feature that we would find great value in so Pam can make and receive calls without the cockpit noise.

So thanks to running into Joe at the airport the other day, we might be ordering the Zulu sometime soon. Joe, please don’t buy a Garmin 696. If you do, please don’t tell me about it! 

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Cleaning The Oil Filter Screen On A 1967 Cessna 172H

 My 1967 Cessna 172H has the old oil filter screen instead of an oil filter. I had changed the oil a couple of times without having removed, inspected and cleaned the oil filter screen, so with this oil change, I was going to make sure and clean the screen as well. It was overdue. As with everything else about the airplane, this was going to be a learning experience.

With the cowling off, I drained the oil as usually from the quick drain. I let it drain for a good while to let as much as possible come out of the quick drain to avoid having so much come out when removing the oil filter screen. I snipped the safety wires from the oil screen and unused sensor plug bolt head which is bolted into the head of the oil filter screen. Next I loosened the oil filter screen with the torque wrench, a three-inch extension and a one inch crowfoot wrench. I did not loosen or remove the smaller hex-head plug bolt on the end of oil filter screen.


I carefully backed the oil filter screen out by hand just enough to allow oil from the sump to drip into a plastic cup that I had wedged in underneath the filter screen to catch the oil. I happened to use a clear plastic drink bottle that I happened to have handy. I cut it in half and used the bottom portion. It helped that it was clear so I could tell if the cup might overflow. About a cup and a half of oil came out so I did have to hand tighten the screen back to stop the oil flow and dump the cup out and then go back and loosen the screen again and get the remaining oil out. Once the dripping stopped, I carefully removed the oil filter screen from the crankcase and noted which way the old copper crush gasket was installed; the open “parting line” was facing the crankcase.


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Our Flight To Indiana – July 2008

On Wednesday, July 16, 2008, Pam, Kayla, Mallory, and I departed Columbia (KCUB) at around 10:00 a.m. and traveled to ReynoldsIndiana, to see Pam’s sisters and their families.

We took off from Owens Field a little later than we wanted to due to some marginal VFR in the upstate between us and Asheville. As the weather reports predicted, the low cast  was gone by the time we got to the upstate. We were at 4500 feet until around Spartanburg and the mountains south of Asheville. We climbed to 6500 feet south of Hogback Mountain and over flew the Asheville area and were treated to beautiful mountain views, with Mount Mitchell towering hazily far to the east.

As we ventured on over the Blue Ridge Mountains we climbed to 8500 feet to give us a good margin to clear the Great Smoky Mountains into Tennessee. For a while we were flying under a cloud layer that was getting close above us so we descended to 6500 feet and enjoyed some beautiful views of the rippled and raked terrain of the northeastern Tennessee and southeastern Kentucky cumberland landscape.

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Posted in Cross Country | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment – The Weather Compendium

On a recent business trip, Pam and I enjoyed flying what was our very first cross country business flight together. We flew my Cessna 172, “Betsy”, to Gwinnett County/Briscoe Airport in Lawrenceville, Georgia. It was mid-January and the weather was a concern as wintry weather was forecast, so I had been checking the weather forecasts several days in advance of our planned trip.

Of all the weather information available on the internet today, there are a few sources that I rely upon regularly: AOPA, NOAA, and AOPA has all the “official” and highly dependable aviation weather and airport information, and NOAA gives local forecasts in simple laymen’s terms. however provides pilots with a collection of weather and airport information from various sources and displays that information on a single webpage. is a result of ten years of development by Dan Checkoway, a pilot, airplane builder, and computer software engineer located in Chino Hills, California. His initial intent was to have quick and concise weather information for his personal flying. Over the years, tweaking the website led to Dan’s offering it to other pilots.
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Mystery of the crazy crackling cockpit noise

On December 18, 2007, Pam and I decided to take an afternoon flight since the weather was so nice. It was very chilly, but otherwise nice flying weather. The sun was working its way down at around 4:45 pm as we did a preflight inspection and pulled Betsy out of the hangar. Sunset was to be at 5:17, so we had a little daylight to fly in yet.

We got airborne and flew over downtown Columbia, right by the State Capitol building with the big Christmas tree out front. Its lights were on, but there was still a little too much daylight to make them look bright from our viewpoint, but pretty none the less.

The sun was setting blindingly bright to our west so we flew eastward over Forest Acres. What an incredible view of the vast “forest” of the Forest Areas area as the low lying sunlight had shone on the trees, lighting them up intensely with an almost glowing golden hue on their westerly sides, and casting shadows beyond them to the east in a way that only the setting sun can.
The mystery continues…

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Flight to Aiken on December 8, 2007

On Saturday morning, December 8, 2007, Pam and I arrived at the airport (CUB) around 10:00 a.m. to see that plenty of folks – pilots and YEs – turned out for the last planned Young Eagles Day of the year. I had planned to fly one or two YE flights, and Pam said she would find something to do at the SAC to help out.

We had to go thru the north gate to get into the airport as the gate nearest the SAC was out of order. That was just fine since my hangar is up that way. Once at the hangar, I gave Betsy (N2878L) a good looking over and pulled her out onto the tarmac. Since Pam and I had this weekend to ourselves – kids gone to Dad’s – we decided to forego the YE flights and take a trip to Aiken to see my mom.
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