Home » Flight Chops Contests » Announcing Our Contest Winners! TELL US YOUR STORY – January 2018

Announcing Our Contest Winners! TELL US YOUR STORY – January 2018

Big congrats to our latest winners*!


(Open to all Flight Chops Viewers + Flight Chops Patreon Supporters)

Here was the call:
We’re looking for a fascinating aviation story to shoot for an upcoming Flight Chops episode!
Tell us your story or someone’s very close to you; we want to know about wacky, cool, or rare planes you fly or have access to; we’re looking for something informative, or inspiring, or fascinating, or… well, you tell us! Let’s hear it!

No story is too big or too small, if you think the Flight Chops viewers will love it, we want to hear it.

We will come to you. The winning story gets to be featured in an upcoming episode!


The responses blew us away.  Literally from all around the world.

We went through every single entry, and then shortlisted about a dozen of your story ideas.

It’s impossible to pick just one, there are so many good ones.  And we love building the community in this way so we’ve extended this contest into February 2018!

We have gotten the ball rolling on planning not one, but two new episode ideas.  And we have a number more that we want to put into motion.  

So thank you to all who opened up and shared some incredible aviation moments with us.

The two episode ideas we have greenlit are:

From Jonathan C. in Anchorage, Alaska

I love seeking out fun and unique experiences in aviation, especially warbirds. My most recent adventure was earning my multi engine seaplane rating in Anchorage, Alaska with the guys at goosehangar.com. They operate a 1944 Grumman Goose that original served in the US military. It was one of the most unique, interesting, and fun experiences of my aviation career. The instructor, Burke Mees, literally wrote the book on seaplane flying and flew the Goose commercially for many years in the Aleutian Islands. They operate out of Lake Hood which is said to be the largest and busiest seaplane base in the world. The Goose is a formidable aircraft with 2 – R985 radial engines (the same engines as the Beaver and Beech 18, and the little brother to the R1340 on the Harvard) for a total of 900 HP. Book value gross weight is 8000 pounds. Add in a free castoring tail wheel, and ground handling can be quite a challenge. But, overall, the Goose flies great and is well behaved even in single-engine operations. The uniqueness of the aircraft, the awesome flight quality, and the beautiful scenery all line up for a amazing experience.

From Ricardo A., in San Juan, Puerto Rico

I’m a 22 year-old from Puerto Rico and I would like to share my story. I was about to complete my commercial single when hurricanes Irma and Maria destroyed the island. After the hurricanes all of Puerto Rico was destroyed and the airport I was doing my training (Isla Grande Airport TJIG) went from a GA airport to a near military airport. Training got really hard since the airspace over Puerto Rico was full of airplanes sending help to the island. Then there was 1 fatal accident at TJIG caused by the rotor wash of the US Army Blackhawks operating in the airport. My flight school prevented some students from continuing training since it became really dangerous to fly in Puerto Rico. Even though the island was destroyed, and almost the entire island was without electricity, I was able to complete my commercial single engine and less than a month later I completed my commercial multi engine. Now I’m starting my CFI, and hope to complete it soon. The island is still without electricity in some areas, but flying in Puerto Rico is still a wonderful experience. You will love it!

Again, this opportunity is still open for February 2018 so if you have something unique, inspiring or educational to share, please tell us about it!!


(We heart our Patreon Supporters!  This is our way of thanking you.  This prize pack is open to all Flight Chops Patreon Supporters)

Congratulations Steve M.!  Steve will take home an awesome group of aviation prizing provided by our Awesome Flight Chops Sponsors which includes a Foreflight Pro membership, a must-have flight bag essential from iCloth Avionics, a CloudAhoy membership, swag from Spectrum Airways and sweet purpose-built shades from Scheyden, plus more awesomeness from sponsors like TFP (The Finer Points of Flying)!  Check out the Sponsors page and learn about this cool stuff.  

I only work with products and services that I like and use myself.


Huge thanks to all the Supporters on Patreon!

Check our Patreon page to find out how to be part of the Flight Chops Community.

Productions like this wouldn’t be possible without your help!


Flight Chops is Proudly Supported by:


Bose Aviation

Van's Aircraft

SiriusXM Aviation



EarthX Batteries


The Finer Points

Next Level Flight Training - NLFT.ca

I’m a Private Pilot, doing my best to stay current and learn. I fly for fun and might just be the least cocky pilot on the internet! My self analysis videos can seem self deprecating at times, but I am trying to learn from the small mistakes to avoid making a big one; I’m happy to share and find it rewarding to help other pilots or aspiring aviators in any way that I can. How does the saying go? “Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards”. And in aviation, not all tests are survivable.

My virtual “ride-along” flying videos are aimed and sharing my experiences and giving back to the aviation community which has been so helpful to me. I shoot multi-camera angles, get detailed real time instrument panel shots, and have radio intercom audio. I respect people’s time, so I put a fair bit of work into editing to keep the videos concise and engaging; I add animations and further graphics and voice overs where needed to add context and explanations.

My hope is to continue to grow and evolve the “Flight Chops” project with input and support from the aviation community!

Steve Thorne, aka "Flight Chops"

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Flight Chops Disclaimer

I am a “weekend warrior” private pilot, I fly for fun with no intentions of going commercial. I have had my PPL for over 15 years, but still consider each flight a learning experience – I generally take detailed notes after each flight to remind myself what went well or what I could do to improve…. Having the GoPro cameras to record flights like this is invaluable. I find these self analysis videos very helpful in my constant quest to improve, and am happy to share.

Feedback is invited; however, please keep it positive.

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