View Full Version : Landings
4th Jun 2012, 21:25
I am writing here today to clear some confusion about landing.
I fly or shall i say i am learning to fly P28. POH, forums , other pilots and my instructor say touchdown speed is 60 knots. I touchdown at below 50 or even touching 40 knots, just seconds before touchdown my yoke is completely pulled back thereby reducing speed to 40-50 way below then poh speed. yet there is no stall warning or rough land .my landing is very smooth, plane gently touches down on runway,no stall beep or any landing discomfort.
Now my reason for asking this question is am i wrong. Am i walking on the thatched roof at 2000 feet or since i am of minuscule weight i should be OK.
4th Jun 2012, 22:48
I,m a low time VFR pilot and my advice is worth what you are paying for it, but i was always taught to read the POH and fly the numbers.
4th Jun 2012, 22:58
For most tricycle light aircraft, the more slowly you're going when you touchdown, the better, including some sounding of the stall warning - as long as you touchdown gently! Hovering over the runway at 5 feet up, with the stall warning blaring is bad. Touching down too fast is worse. See video.
If the aircraft is stalled, or nearly so, when you gently touchdown, a bounce, or pilot induced oscillation, is virtually impossible. PA 28's have a happily large speed range within which a nice landing can be made. Landing in the slower half of that speed range will give you better results.
In what you wrote, I do hope that you are confirming the proper operation of the stall warning system. You are coming closer to relying upon it, so know what you have working!
4th Jun 2012, 23:07
I don't have a P28 POH handy, but maybe it gives 60 knots as approach speed not 'touchdown speed'?
Your actual speed at the point of touchdown, after properly rounding out, should be just above stall speed, which would I guess be about 45-50 knots in a lightly loaded P28 (sorry, my memory is a bit vague, it's some years since I flew one). If you touch down 10-15 knots faster than this, you deserve to, and probably will, go merrily bouncing down the runway. (edit to say, just like PilotDAR's clip above)
But the main point is, why on earth are you looking at the ASI as you round out? Eyes ahead to the end of the runway...
Don't understand the bit about thatched roofs, is that a Malaysian custom?
PB - by all means read the POH, but please fly the aircraft, not the numbers...;)
5th Jun 2012, 01:40
I'll agree with Humaround in that you seem to be confusing approach speed with touchdown speed.
For a Pitts S-1, the approach speed I always used was 90 mph, but I can guarantee you I never touched down at that speed. At what exact speed I DID touch down I cannot tell you because I never looked - far too busy at that moment looking at other stuff going by at some unknown-but-still-pretty-fast speed. However, since the Pitts stalls at around 60 mph, I'm guessing it was somewhere between 65 and 70 mph.
5th Jun 2012, 08:26
operationstaybehind amongst othersI am writing here today to clear some confusion about landing.
I fly or shall i say i am learning to fly P28Then talk to your instructor, that's what they are there for!
You appear to be asking a series of questions under different names. All the questions should be answered by you own instructor if you have one.
5th Jun 2012, 12:42
60 kts sounds more like a 'roundout' speed than an approach speed.
60 kts on approach is dicing with death in a PA28, especially on the kind of days we will be seeing plenty of in the UK over the next few months. My POH states 72 kts approach speed.
Same technique works equally well for all PA28s (up to 180s) - fly the approach at 70, when you're about 30-40', get the power off, which usually gives a roundout at about 60 kts, and a touchdown speed of about 45-50 kts. This is with a runway that isn't stupid short or undulating or whatever, in which case, chase the numbers and fly flat.
The bottom line is, why don't you ask this question to your instructor? After all, he/she knows your flying, and knows the runway you're flying from... :confused:
5th Jun 2012, 13:46
An awful lot of speed numbers being quoted here. The PA28 is a range of aircraft with MTOW anywhere between 2300 and 3100lbs and different wings therefore different speeds.
You are at great risk of being flamed here asking a question you should be discussing with your instructor. He WILL know the correct speed to use in the particular aircraft you are flying at this stage of your course.
Shaggy Sheep Driver
5th Jun 2012, 14:21
The touchdown speed on a light aircraft should be the lowest you can get. It should be fully held off except in a few circumstances (like a wheel landing in a taildragger).
I you fly a taildragger, 3-pointing it demands just that; you can get away with much sloppier technique in a trike and many 'pilots' (aeroplane drivers, perhaps) do - witness the almost unbiquitous 3-point trike landings (so far too fast and bad news for the nosewheel) you can see at any GA field any day of the week.
BTW if you are looking at the ASI at the point of touchdown you ain't doin it right! Your eyes should be looking at far end of the runway and your peripheral vision noting the sink rate (in case you run out of lift and need to add a touch of power to cushion the touchdown).
5th Jun 2012, 19:11
Talk to your instructor that what they're there for. ;)
I suspect he/she will be please your landings are so perfect. :D
Failing his realising how lucky he/she is to have such a good pupil he/she might have a usefull comment or two. :O
5th Jun 2012, 19:25
Don't forget that stall speed will be much lower in the flare to land as you are in ground effect and this is accentuated with flaps extended. So this is probably why you didn't stall..
Low wing Pipers with flaps extended are well known for floating even with the stick right back.
5th Jun 2012, 19:26
First off...go out and buy the book: STICK AND RUDDER , read it and fly it.
Now...I have lots of time in the PA28 Series...but there are many versions of the PA28, so always state the whole designator like PA28-140 etc.
NOW, WITH your instructor, go up to a safe altitude, configure for landing and STALL it...note the speed where you really stall.
Go back and fly the approach at 1.3 times the above speed. aim for touchdown speed no lower than 1.1 times the stall speed. this for favorable , no wind conditions.
NOW, go to a quiet room, do a weight and balance calculation, determine exact weight at start of approach, look for calculation information for stall speed/Vref calculation for your exact weight...it may be different than the POH, because the POH usually gives speed for MAX weight.
I do recall the PA28-161 had an approach speed of 63 knots( from memory 30 years ago)
also look up speeds for short field landing.
and DO read: STICK AND RUDDER
Shaggy Sheep Driver
5th Jun 2012, 22:40
And note, please, there is no such thing as stall speed. Only stall angle.
6th Jun 2012, 11:05
For what it's worth. If you are a student pilot you should be asking your instructor. You should not be pissing around with speeds etc without discussing the possible consequences with your instructor. To ask a question on a web forum that IS a life or death subject is bloody stupid. You may as well ask some guy you met down the pub.
Who, exactly, is your mother going to blame when you cock up a landing & pile in based on your interpretation of the advice you get here?
Edit: I note that most replies are saying "land as slow as possible". This is correct, 1.3Vs correct. But your instructor is training you to be SAFE from yourself at this time.
Once you have the licence & some time you will be able to play around safely with some experience behind it.
Frinstance my a/c (tailwheel) has a stall speed of 40kts. I landed it the other day at 38kts. no wind, no turbulence, no drama.
The approach speed is normally 1.3 times the stall speed in a given configuration.
Ie you may land with full flap, part flap or no flap.
The idea is to land as slow as possible and as close to the stall as possible to get the shortest landing run as possible.
It is a slight misconception that stall and landing are set in stone as they are infact seperate.
We had another thread where I stated that infact if you had enough skill you could land an aircraft at its cruise speed!!!
You would have to be very accurate and you would take forever to stop but the high speed bounces are indicative of lacking in skills not landing an aircraft at high speed.
OK all that maybe an unreal example but one to make a point.
In certain conditions ie strong winds shear and turbulence it may not suit to land or be in a situation where you are holding off waiting for the aircraft to get near the stall and sink on the runway.
For training purposes that is the technique to go for ie hold 1.3 times the stall in a given configuration then concentrate on landing the aircraft near the runway slowly increasing the AOA so that you land as slow as possible.