Larry said, 

> "Non-responders will consider all sides and decide what is best for
them.  And so it 
goes........


Good point re non-responders.  To those non-responders, my comment about
"putzing around to find out one's service ceiling" was made without a lot
of thought.  I said it with the presumption that most KR's (the ones with
VW's anyway) run completely out of steam by 15K, especially with a cruise
(coarse) prop like I use.  I'm guilty of not taking into consideration
those KR's with Corvairs, turboed VW's, O-200's or even those with VW's
with climb props.  "Putzing around to find out what one's service ceiling
is" could indeed put the pilot into incapacitive territory if their KR's
are capable of seriously getting into the flight levels and if they stay
there for any length of time.  But then, that wouldn't be "putzing
around".

Mark mentioned a long time ago that he had taken his Corvair-powered KR
up to about 20K.  He just wanted to find out how high his plane could go
- something we all ought to be interested in with our planes.  A rising
cloud deck could make this knowledge critically important if non-IFR
equipped.  In Mark's case (if I'm not mistaken) he went up, found out
what he wanted to know, and came back down.  That's what I had in mind
when I said "putzing around".   If we're healthy enough to have a medical
certificate, going up into oxygen territory and straightaway coming back
down isn't going to cause anyone any problems, IMHO.   

*****************

While on this subject, I may as well repeat some old info I've expressed
on the forum since having oxygen on board is really wonderful.  I bought
my medical "E" bottle with valve on eBay for $30 or thereabouts.  The
PD1000 regulator was also from eBay and also cost about $30 (brand new as
I recall).  A "Maximizer" cannula was about $12, also eBay.  Getting the
dive shop to hydrotest, stamp and fill the tank was about $50 -
hydrotesting was the major cost there.  Needs to be done every three
years (or possibly five . . . can't remember).  

So, it was ridiculously inexpensive to have oxygen on board and the
benefits are many.  Even at low altitudes breathing oxygen contributes to
clarity of mind and helps to make better decisions.  It improves vision
generally but critically so at night, whether one is flying high or not. 
Headaches from extended periods at altitude is very common but I never
get them when using O2.  Oxygen is a really beneficial attribute for
flying, high or low, day or night.  And if you go the eBay route as I
did, you can get everything you need for about $100.  It's important that
you get a pulse-dose regulator.  Constant Flow, the old aviation standard
type, will waste three fifths of your oxygen supply.  Several companies
make pulse-dose regulators besides Devilbiss, the company that made my
PD1000.    If you don't have dive shops in your area your AME will be
happy to give you a prescription to get your tank filled at medical
supply places.  That's really for desperate situations though since
medical supply places charge a ridiculous amount compared to dive shop
prices.  Making friends with a welding supply place and buying an adapter
to go from their valve to yours is the better solution in cases where
there's no dive shops around.     

And of course, buy a pulse oximeter to periodically check your saturation
level if you fly up high like I always do.  Mine cost about $35 new. 
Made in China but I imagine the really expensive Nonin's are also made in
China so there's no need to waste money.  I've had my Chinese no-name for
about ten years and it still worked fine last time I used it.  

If you are lucky on Craigslist and can find a small oxygen concentrator
that runs on 12 volts and get it cheap, that would be just too cool.   Or
if money is not that critical, one might spend some bucks on one for this
really elegant solution.  They come with a long-lasting lithium battery
so in case of electrical failure you still have oxygen.  

Mike

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