Day 2. 23/June/2014 Oh Bugger! Day score 10. Gosh I needed that sleep. They day seemed bright and I went to catch the number 11A to the airport this time. I have far too much gear to carry, but this should get better as the days go by and my mass of paperwork clears. Arriving at the airport I cleared security and got back to the plane. There was a lot to sort out. I definitely needed to move the stick position further back for comfort, having flown most of yesterday with my fingertips. And I needed to sort out cables and power leads for all the cameras more. In Direct Flight there was an uproar as there was no internet. Also John, the operations boss didn’t know who I was. My friend Pete, who had organised my arrival here yesterday, had made everyone aware of my arrival, except the operations boss, the one person who really needed to know. But he was cool about it. I met another couple of pilots from the coast guard, about to fly out over the North Sea in a Cessna 406 twin, gas turbo prop aircraft. They were going out, checking on the fishing ships and boats off shore. I studied their dry immersion suits. They were identical to mine. But then my friend had borrowed on a long term basis the one he had given me from them a month or two before he left their Scottish operation. Back with the plane, David Barclay of Highland Aviation came over to greet me. He explained the fuel would be cheaper if I bought it through his Highland Aviation, instead of direct from BP. But as I only needed 20 litres to get to Wick, he went and got a jerry can and we poured it in. He showed me around the hangar he shared with Direct Flight’s fishing vessel inspection aircraft and the Coast Guard. We then walked to his offices outside the airport complex, were I paid for the fuel. I went to pay landing fees at Signature Aviation Handling services and nicked their pen. Don’t worry, with the extortionate landing fee price, they can afford another one. I shook hands with John at Direct Flight again, apologised for my friend not telling him about my arrival and went to jump in the plane. I fired Itzy up, spent hours with the camera set up again and taxied out to hold of Echo just short of the runway to do run up checks. I turned off the left mag to test the right magneto and the engine stopped? Dam… It really shouldn’t have done that! A dead mag? I called up the tower to return to the apron but as a plane had followed me out and was blocking my path back, I had to go up the runway, off at the end and all the way around. This could be a serious problem. One I didn’t need for inconvenience, time and confidence. I took the cowls off and got access to the magneto and coils. All looked alright. Bugger I didn’t have the right allen key to get into the distributor cap. Just inside the open doors of the hangar was a massive tool trolley. Who ever it belonged to I didn’t know, but it was bound to contain the size I needed. Hhhmm. If anyone touches my tool box I’m normally incensed, so I would prefer to find out who it belonged to. As if by magic, the owner walked through the door and caught me acting suspiciously around his pride and joy. Alan his name, top bloke and soon I had put his mind at rest that I wasn’t a thieving ******* and he handed over the right key. I took the distributor cap off the right magneto to find the brand new rotor arm I had fitted last month had disassembled itself and destroyed the internals of the cap on its way. I took the left cap off to find that the left arm was about to do the same thing!!! Hang on, I had flown over the Cairngorms and other inhospitable lands and was about to venture off over the foreboding north Atlantic and the engine had almost quit. I had been lucky. If the other arm had fallen off the engine would have stopped immediately, meaning a forced landing. One which I would have most likely written the aircraft off and possibly done a lot of damage to it and me… Shock set in I suppose. A realism that I had just used up all my good luck that I’m going to need to get around the world, during the first flight. What’s worse is that these are approved parts that have broke… If I can’t get to the bottom of the problem and convince myself of the integrity of their new bits, then I can’t even fly home and definitely I can’t go on my journey. The journey and dreams of safe adventure have stopped, even before it’s started… XXXX! There had been talk of defective parts in the latest light aircraft safety bulletin. People had been using parts not supplied by the agent or manufacture… Heck even I had investigated using cheaper suppliers than the main Jabiru engine dealer. But in the end, these parts I had got were from the approved supplier… I needed to get a look at the article again. I phoned my Dad, explained all, but he hadn’t got the magazine at hand. Then I phone the head engineer of the Light Aircraft Association, who govern my aircraft, to get him to send out another bulletin, to try and eradicate the bogus parts. Ben, from Highland Aviation, who had been the pilot behind me with a student in a Piper Tomahawk when I told the tower of my problem, guided me to their briefing room. The flight safety article for the Jabiru distributor arms was online. A quick look confirmed that indeed, for what ever reason, I had been supplied and had been using the bogus parts. Apparently others who had highlighted the problem said these bogus arms only last about 5 hours. Mine had done 4:40 hours… I phoned up the agent, discussed it with them and ordered two more caps and arms. The agent guaranteed this problem had been resolved and the new parts that would arrive would be ok… Free of charge as well… Considering I could have just made an aircraft shaped hole in the ground, so they should be… Ben invited me to place Itzy in their hangar, since I wasn’t going anywhere soon and showed me the code to the door. That was it for the day. I might as well return to town. Back in Inverness, I phoned my Dad to put his mind at rest. He was all for me coming home again till this bogus part issue was all resolved. I didn’t want him or my Mum to worry. But lets be honest here, they should be as I am… The hotels were mostly full and the cheapest I could find was £85. I’d begrudgedly paid £40 the night before. I might be away for 100 days. At an average of £60 a night, that is £6,000.00 just on accommodation. I can’t afford that. So after a Mc.Donalds burger I got back on the bus to the airport to go and fetch the tent. Getting through security at that time of night was a bit of a git, but never mind. Digging out the tent from the aircraft, it started to rain heavily. The driest place was in the hangar so I blew up my airbed and kipped there. Thought for the day: What a difference a day makes. Last night I walked around Inverness with my head held high, full of excitement and a fury and thirst for adventure. Tonight I was dragging my new expensive walking boots around, despondent and withdrawn.