Badger Works #2: Opportunities Open Up When You Least Expect

**This article also falls under Sadie’s Science Corner and Pre-Flight Check because of the uniqueness of today’s content.**

Pre-Flight Check

While I cannot delve into much detail, I can say that I will be the academic instructor for the UAV/UAS Aerospace Academy Course through the Mississippi/Southeast Regional Civil Air Patrol. Throughout this three day course I will teach cadets and senior members alike on UAV/UAS aircraft and their capabilities, learn how they are built, and learn how to fly them.

Badger Works: UAV/UAS Training with the FT Guinea Pig


Guinea Pig from Flite Test

– My vision for aerospace education through the Civil Air Patrol (and other education) is based around experimentation and research with the Flite Test Guinea Pig. The Guinea Pig was designed by Peter Sripol and was later converted to a swappable aircraft by Flite Test. The Guinea Pig is a medium to large size twin engine cargo plane that is designed to be used for in-air experimentation, hence the name guinea pig. With this aircraft CAP squadrons throughout the Southeast will be able to learn how to fly as well as conduct field experiments. With the Guinea Pig people can now get hands-on and do research as well as learn how aircraft experimentation is conducted.



Sadie’s Science Corner: Experiments with the Guinea

We will be conducting several opening experiments during the academy and afterwards to see how feasible they are, and then we will branch out and eventually have an experiment manual in which will be available for download. These are a few of the first experiments we will conduct:

  • GoPro Cargo Drop- We will design a system in which the cargo deck in the Guinea will have tracks (like a real cargo plane for transporting and securing cargo) from which we can air drop and safely land a Go Pro with a parachute system.

    MC-130J Commando II activity

    Picture from Aviationist

  • JATO (Jet-Assisted TakeOff)- As seen on the Guinea review video from Flite Test, the Guinea can get JATO units using Estes rocket engines. We will do more research based around motor size as well as the angle of the motors.jato-guinea
  • Glider Tow- What I have in mind was a glider aircraft designed on Fly RC several years ago in which they designed a foamboard model of the Waco glider which was used during the invasion of Normandy. The plans are online for free download; they were originally designed for depron but can be easily transferred to DTFB (Dollar Tree Foam Board).


  • Experiments from Project FICON (see video)


Want more aviation content? Head over to and check out some other aviation blogs as well as aircraft for sale. Want more Sadie and Buddy Aviation content? Check us out on Facebook at . Fly safe and have fun!



Sadie’s Science Corner #3: NOVA

Editor’s Note: This week’s blog will be going up sooner than the normal 7:00 pm. release due to this week’s topic. Tonight please check out NOVA on your local PBS provider; it is aired at 9:00/8:00 central-standard time each Wednesday.


This week we will speak about NOVA, and while this iconic television programming does not entirely revolve around aviation, it has been used to educate Americans about scientific discoveries and exploration, that which includes amazing programming about aviation, as seen below. Anyone that has watched PBS (Public Broadcasting Service) has more likely seen NOVA once or twice, as it began being aired in 1974, and was created to teach the populous the intricacies of science and discovery without having to simplify the science being taught.

NOVA seeks to cover a wide range of scientific discoveries and achievements, as well as look back on past technologies and their history. Among several of the more memorable episodes are an Easter Island special where scientists built a replica Moai (the large head statues) as well as an episode where they studied landslides and their causes. Thanks to NOVA you do not have to be a leading scientist or engineer at a major university to know what is happening currently in the exciting world of discovery and exploration.

I would recommend everyone to watch NOVA; I have for several years and I always look forward to Wednesday evenings because I know that I will be able to learn something that I want to learn about. NOVA and other shows like it have shown that when education is not forced, people eagerly want to learn more. To me, NOVA gives people that special ability to learn without the pressures of a test or a class grade, and I can attest that while I can remember most of what happened in a NOVA episode, I would probably not be able to tell you half of what was on my Psychology test last week. That is what education is supposed to be about, actual learning and a betterment of understanding, not being able to re-show information through tests. It has been proven that education that would advance our understanding will not be possible through see-and-regurgitate methods.

“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.” -Isaac Asimov

I wish more people watched and contributed to educational shows such as NOVA, rather than spending millions of dollars on reality tv shows that will not last over a few years. Imagine if the majority of television programming were educational how much better off we would be as a society. Education should be constantly advancing, but over the last several years it has been only stagnant, and has actually worsened. Something like this should never happen, and yet it has. America went from a world-leader in education to #17 on the list, with countries like Peru ahead of us in educating their people. It is time to once again lead the world in exploration and discovery, that is what America is about!

“I have watched NOVA since the 1980’s and it has always been very informative and educational.”  -Barbara Owens

As I have spoken of before, for thousands of years man had looked to the heavens and hoped to fly like eagles, and thanks to hard-working mainly self-educated Americans with a dream (the Wright brothers) we were able to achieve flight. Nearly fifty years down the road we had landed on the moon; where did that spirit go? Discovering the unknown is what drives humans to do what they do, not 9-5 jobs. America was founded directly from human exploration and scientific achievement. Someone had to design a ship capable of crossing the Atlantic, some people had to be willing to leave everything they knew and loved in order to become explorers, some had to want to move to America in order to have religious freedoms and think on their own. I could go on forever, but you understand my point, that humans are driven by the excitement of discovering something, being the first to walk on another celestial body, as well as a host of other reasons. America was founded because people were tired of a stagnant government system in Europe, they wanted to be free to explore, to believe what they knew to be right, and to uphold their curious side of ‘what if?’ Though America was founded on these principles, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, we are falling away, starting at the smallest level. Children begin going to school and love to learn, but through tests and deadlines and having to prove they learn through ways proven useless for transferring information (such as just seeing a math problem but not working one) they finish school and do not care anymore. That is why I love NOVA so much, people are not forcing me to learn, and you begin to look at it as, ‘hey, on Wednesdays I get to learn something from NOVA!’

“Wisdom is not a product of schooling but of the lifelong attempt to acquire it.”-Albert Einstein

Through NOVA education and understanding once again flourish, and people want to learn. Through educational shows such as NOVA people push themselves to further their education, and our country could once again lead the world in learning. Through NOVA programming a child could grow up to be the next Einstein, or invent a faster way for us to get to Mars, or even invent or discover technologies that would make it less expensive to do things such as fly, as seen with carbon fiber.

Tonight, please enjoy NOVA with family or friends,learn something, and consider donating to your local PBS station. Also, feel free to join us in writing a letter to PBS and the NOVA producers/leaders in thanking them for what they do by sending in a short letter that will be added onto our main letter to, or you can personally contact them here at or send them an actual letter to:


WGBH Educational Foundation

1 Guest Street

Boston, MA 02135

While you’re at it swing over to and check out the newly updated scholarship page here . Since you’ll already be over there (btw who is that handsome fella in the leather jacket and CAP blues?) make sure to check out some of the amazing aircraft there for sale. As always, thanks for reading!

Sadie’s Science Corner #2: The Gippsland Aeronautics GA-8

Editor’s Note: In the Sadie’s Science Corner Section we will take a look at some of the aircraft that I have flown and my thoughts on them, as well as Sadie’s normal posts that deal with scientific discoveries and achievements in aerospace.


The Civil Air Patrol GA-8, which I flew in January, 2016.


In January of this year I got the opportunity to fly one of the Civil Air Patrol’s GA-8 Airvans. I was attending Mississippi Wing’s Cadet Convention, and one of the best parts of the weekend was the O-flights. Over two days each cadet got to go up, and many got to fly the aircraft from the right seat. I went to the airport the last day of O-flights; as we are all sitting in the airport lobby they begin calling out aircraft assignments. I believe they were getting toward the end of the list, and I was afraid that I would just have to ride back seat for the day. Finally I heard what I had been hoping for the whole weekend, “Martin, you’re flying in the GA-8.” A rush of excitement engulfed me, because CAP only operates a handful of these aircraft, it is a rare chance to get to fly it. As we walked out onto the flightline the temperature gauge outside of the lobby’s door read 30º. I shivered, and made a beeline for the aircraft.

After our pre-flight check, the pilot, four passengers, and I climbed in, grateful to be out of the cold but relatively calm wind. After making sure everything was in order we turned over the 300 hp. Lycoming engine, which quickly roared to life. Having a larger engine than the Cessna aircraft, we needed a little more time to allow the oil temperature to build up, so we taxied out to sit in the holding position. As we taxied onto the apron we were saluted by the flight line marshallers, which were mostly cadets training that weekend.  At that moment I thought, CAP is the greatest thing that any person could do to get involved in aviation. As we sit in the holding (I’ve also seen it called De-Icing) position, all of the other flights took off.

After the oil temperature had risen to a safe level it was finally our turn to take off. We taxied out onto the runway, and I will admit, I was a bit nervous. All of the other times that I had flown aircraft, I had yet to be nervous. Why was I this time? Then I thought about my surroundings. For one, it had always been only the instructor and I, and now I had four passengers in the air with me. Also, while looking similar to a Cessna, the GA-8 is much larger. I took a deep breath; at that same time the pilot had began our takeoff run. I realized as we began rolling down the runway that once the plane starts moving, the nervousness disappeared. It was time to go to work!

Takeoff! With as cold and thick as the air was that day it seemed like it took fifty feet to get off the ground. We climbed to about 2,500 feet, and he handed over the plane. With all of the CAP aircraft in the area, each flight left the area at a different altitude. The GA-8 being the largest and heaviest took the lowest altitude to try and avoid any unnecessary icing. Once we reached our altitude the temperature gauge on the aircraft read 20º outside. Being from South Mississippi it may as well of said -100º, as by that point it was just a number. Thank God for the heater that was installed on the GA-8. As part of the O-flights provided by CAP, during each of your five powered flights you go over modules, or a lesson on a certain topic. This flight was my flight to talk about weather, and it was a good day for it. Many pilots talk about it (and non-pilots, it is true, trust me), flying the airplanes by feeling. While you are flying you look and see where you are going, you pick a point (usually some type of noticeable landmark) and fly toward it, but for minor trim and ‘input’ from the plane comes from two different sources. These sources, as those who know what I am talking about already know, are the yoke (or stick) and your own seat. You fly by what your rear end feels? To a point. If you fixate on input from the plane, and not on your vision (or instruments for IFR), you could get confused during maneuvers, but we’ll cover that more at a later date. Through this ‘input’ you can begin to feel the aircraft’s movements, it is telling you what it wants!


My Thoughts on the GA-8

The GA-8 is a very useful aircraft for CAP to have in its fleet. It is easy to control, and as I spoke of above when in the front seats you can feel the least bit of turbulence through the controls, and you sit far enough in front of the wing you could feel some of the moderate turbulence, but nothing of concern. I say that to say the GA-8 was designed quite well, as you can feel every detail through the aircraft and know what is going on the entire time. On the return trip I rode as a passenger in the back while another cadet took the controls, and the passenger area is built superbly. Being directly under the wing you could feel almost no bumps, much less any turbulence. At that point I realized, there is a big difference from the pilot/ co-pilot seat to the back! The pilot gets the most input back from his aircraft, and the passengers get a smooth ride. Overall the GA-8 is a win/win all the way around.

Sadie’s Ruling:



Kibbles are how fun of an airplane it is to fly, and Bits are how well the airplane rides for passengers.


Sadie’s Science Corner #1: 50 Years with Star Trek

Most posts about historical facts go under Buddy’s section, but we decided it would be best to look at Star Trek from the scientific point of view. Today marks fifty years since Star Trek was aired for the first time, and people have been hooked ever since. The reason that we decided to write about Star Trek in the science section is because of the role that it played in the development of technology and its impact on scientific discovery since it began.


Source: TOS Opening Logo- Wikipedia


The Original Series set a precedent for all other shows that followed, whether science fiction or not. TOS pushed the boundaries of human achievement, thought, discovery, and relationships as human beings. While it became well loved and accepted by many while its three seasons were aired on NBC, it became extremely popular through re-runs years after the show ended. Star Trek became so popular that its fans began being called “Trekkies.” Many iconic pieces of TOS are still common knowledge with all, even people that do not necessarily like Star Trek, such as live long and prosper, the Vulcan salute, tribbles, and even the characterization of the Enterprise’s crew, like Shatner’s dramatic pause dialogues, Spock’s logic, and Dr. McCoy’s need to bicker with Spock and remind Jim that he was just a doctor, or that a red shirt WAS dead.  

On Thursdays, everything got done early. I made sure all of my homework and chores were finished so that I wouldn’t miss it (Star Trek TOS). I remember my father and I watching Kirk, Spock, and McCoy’s adventures every week; when Star Trek came on everything else had to wait.” -David Owens

Star Trek has helped inspire children and adults alike across the world to push the boundaries of exploration and achievement as a whole. There have been several spinoffs from The Original Series, including The Next Generation, The Animated Series, Deep Space 9, and many movies that have kept the dream of exploring our universe alive. Many of the inventions and far-fetched ideas at the time of Star Trek being aired was a fantasy, and yet now exist. Some of this product list could include the mobile phone (communicator, TOS), tablet/ iPad (data pad, TNG), and the virtual reality simulators (holodeck (TNG) and holographic displays (TOS)). As we look back on Star Trek we really see that it is a look ahead. Thanks to Gene Roddenberry and his ideas for a science fiction show thousands of children have grown up to become scientists and engineers, explorers and thrill seekers. Star Trek reminds us to be proud of who we are, instead of just complaining that something is wrong to actually fix it, and to expect more out of ourselves. We as humans are capable of such great achievements, and all you have to do to get involved is imagine. Yes you will run into problems that seem to have no possible way around (like the Corbomite Maneuver or the Kobiyashi Maru) but rather than give up keep with you in your thoughts the logic of Spock, the charisma and toughness of Kirk, the will and determination of Scotty, and the wit of Doctor McCoy. Push yourself to be greater, and you will always be an adventurer, push the boundaries of understanding, and you will go where no man has gone before.

Star Trek is my favorite franchise, and it has inspired me to push harder and compete to achieve, not just to get by.


Live Long and Prosper.

Sadie, Buddy, and Jared