Authors Posts by John Zimmerman

John Zimmerman

148 POSTS 52 COMMENTS
Coming from an aviation family, John grew up in the back of small airplanes and learned to fly as a teenager. Ever since, he has been hooked on anything with wings and regularly flies a Citabria, a Pilatus PC-12 and a Robinson R44 helicopter. He is an ATP and also holds ratings for multiengine, seaplanes, gliders, and helicopters. In addition to being Editor-in-Chief of Air Facts, John is a Vice President at Sporty’s Pilot Shop, responsible for new product development and marketing.

Video: what flying is all about

Flying is about lift and thrust, weight and drag. But as Trent Palmer shows in this amazing video, flying is also about gaining a new perspective on the world and enjoying life. After watching these three taildraggers fly around a mountain at sunset, we think you'll agree that, "life is too short to eat dessert last."

Video: first flight in a Cirrus SR22

The Cirrus SR22 is the best-selling piston airplane in America, and this video shows why. The airplane is fun to fly, fast, and loaded with technology. Ride along as an experienced pilot gets his first left seat time in this amazing airplane, including some actual IFR time and some avionics programming time.

Sporty’s Flight Gear Quick Case Video Demo

A good flight bag can make your next flight lesson more organized and less stressful. But sometimes you don't need a full flight bag or duffel. In this video, we show the compact and flexible Flight Gear Quick Case in action. It has room for the essentials, but won't take up much room in the cockpit.

Video: flying the world’s largest seaplane

When you hear seaplane you might think of a Piper Cub on floats. On the other end of the spectrum is the massive Martin Mars, a 90,000 lb. flying boat with a wingspan of 200 feet. Incredibly, this World War II vintage airplane is still flying, and in this video you'll get to ride along as a dedicated team of pilots and mechanics flies the airplane into EAA Oshkosh.  It's a unique way to arrive at the world's largest fly-in.

Video: learning to hover a helicopter

Learning to fly an airplane is intimidating for new pilots, but learning to hover a helicopter can seem like a truly impossible task. As this video shows, though, that's not the case at all. Once you understand the aerodynamics, it's just a matter of keeping everything balanced. Ride along on this first lesson to see what it's like to fly an Enstrom helicopter.

Video: flying from Alaska to Argentina

You could fly from Alaska to South America in less than a day with an airline ticket. But what fun would that be? In this video, ride along as an adventurous pilot begins the journey of a lifetime: flying a Piper Super Cub from Alaska all the way to Patagonia.
Cessna off runway

Why you need renter’s insurance

As you get close to your first solo, your flight instructor may talk to you about buying renter's insurance (sometimes called non-owned insurance). While it's never fun to contemplate an incident or accident, this is an important discussion that deserves some careful study.

Video: flying the Icon A5 seaplane around Miami

The Icon A5 is a different kind of airplane. Instead of focusing on speed, range, and payload, it focuses on fun. As an amphibious Light Sport Airplane, it's as comfortable with jet skis and boats as other airplanes. In this video, ride along as one pilot gets a demo flight around Miami in the sleek seaplane, beaching on quiet islands and flying over blue-green water.
Fuel gauges

Only the realistic survive

The unforgiving nature of aviation has serious consequences, consequences we should remember every time we enter the cockpit. If we're unrealistic about our new year's resolution, it probably won’t hurt us. Flying is a different story. There aren’t many second chances.

Video: landing IN the Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon is a great place to fly over in a general aviation aircraft, but how about landing in the Grand Canyon? Ride along with Matt Guthmiller in this video to see the Southwest United States from multiple aircraft, including a flight in a Robinson helicopter. It's further proof that general aviation offers freedom you can't find anywhere else.