At level off I call, “Cruise power, cruise
check,” and Greg pulls the engines right back
to 130 BMEP (brake mean effective pres-
sure), and we loaf along at 185 knots.
The overcast skies give us a bumpy
ride to about midway up the Florida coast
when we suddenly break out into the clear.
Cruising at 7,000 feet in smooth air we can
now begin the fuel mixture leaning process.
The engines have been running in auto-lean until now, but Greg talks me through
the manual leaning procedure. Each engine
is stabilized at 130 BMEP for our low
power cruise. BMEP is another gauge, like
a manifold pressure gauge, that measures
engine power. Greg wants to run the
engines 10 percent lean of peak. One at a
time I push the big mixture levers on the
back side of the pedestal toward the floor
until we register only 117 BMEP, then I
push the throttle back up to 130. Repeat
three more times, and we’re done.
Jeff talks to Joe Castiglioni during the flight. The trip was very social, with passengers spending most of the time out of their
seats mingling with each other and the crew, enjoying snacks, and peeking into the cockpit.
A SOCIAL OCCASION
This is a social occasion, so it’s time for me to
go back and pay attention to the clientele.
Eddy takes my place as I step back into the
cabin. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger’s been
handling the passengers, and they are raven-
ous for pictures and to have my signature join
his on their boarding passes and their really
handsome-looking flight certificates. Wish I
had one, but today I’m just crew.
“Refined, yet brutish”
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