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Yak-11 "Czech Mate" crash at Bakersfield

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Yak-11 "Czech Mate" crash at Bakersfield

Old 3rd Sep 2022, 04:28
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Yak-11 "Czech Mate" crash at Bakersfield

Sherman Smoot was killed in his highly-modified 2800HP Yak-11, following an engine failure after takeoff at Minter Field, Bakersfield.

https://www.ksby.com/news/local-news...in-kern-county

According to Juan Brown, the engine lost oil pressure, the engine seized and the aircraft stalled and spun while attempting to return:

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Old 3rd Sep 2022, 13:52
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Very sad news...
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Old 3rd Sep 2022, 16:36
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The impossible turn.
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Old 3rd Sep 2022, 19:18
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At Bakersfield there is plenty of space all around to land ahead with a high wing load beast like this. Forget about the plane and stay alive.
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Old 4th Sep 2022, 16:56
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Originally Posted by Mr Optimistic View Post
The impossible turn.
only if you don’t have enough energy. Turnbacks were routinely taught by the RAF, the aim not necessarily to land back on the runway, but at least inside the perimeter, on flat ground with ready RFF access. A better option that the spare bedroom of 23 Acacia Avenue.
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Old 4th Sep 2022, 20:02
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For every airplane, there will be an altitude/energy combination from which a gliding turnback can be accomplished. It will be different for every type. If the maneuver is being trained within a safe margin for error, and the pilot is practiced, it maybe the thing to do in the case of an EFATO if there is no good option ahead. For most pilots, it has been proven again and again in fatal outcomes, to be very unwise.
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Old 4th Sep 2022, 20:32
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Prop clearance was minimal and required tail wheel first landing at high speed, as mentioned in the video above.
Seems as though a turn-back to the field was initiated to prevent any inevitable off-field landing damage.
Rip to the highly regarded pilot.
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Old 5th Sep 2022, 11:35
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Originally Posted by Pilot DAR View Post
For every airplane, there will be an altitude/energy combination from which a gliding turnback can be accomplished. It will be different for every type. If the maneuver is being trained within a safe margin for error, and the pilot is practiced, it maybe the thing to do in the case of an EFATO if there is no good option ahead. For most pilots, it has been proven again and again in fatal outcomes, to be very unwise.
Entirely true, of course, and an expansion on my point. It just bugs me to see the myth that it is 'impossible' constantly perpetuated.
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Old 5th Sep 2022, 11:51
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Originally Posted by Pilot DAR View Post
For every airplane, there will be an altitude/energy combination from which a gliding turnback can be accomplished. It will be different for every type. If the maneuver is being trained within a safe margin for error, and the pilot is practiced, it maybe the thing to do in the case of an EFATO if there is no good option ahead. For most pilots, it has been proven again and again in fatal outcomes, to be very unwise.
​​​​​​... This exactly.. 👍.. Unfortunately, there will be many more to come , who will make the turn.. One time..

Fly safe,
B-757
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Old 5th Sep 2022, 15:28
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Originally Posted by 212man View Post
Entirely true, of course, and an expansion on my point. It just bugs me to see the myth that it is 'impossible' constantly perpetuated.
"To err on the safe side" is probably nowhere more appropriate than in these cases. I heard instructors teaching this turn as "impossible" for their students, in order to relieve them from the mental pressures of trying turn back during an EFATO. To save a cheap-ish training aircraft with a turn-back, when their skills might not be there to pull it off, simply does not justify the the risk of a fatal accident. So to remove any doubt, they call it "impossible",
But actually, in some circumstances, it is possible of course.
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Old 5th Sep 2022, 16:38
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In the case of am EFATO in most GA types and their less than ideally practiced pilots, the "impossible turn" is so in part because the pilot was climbing out at Vy or slower, so not only did the pilot need to accelerate to Vy or a suitable gliding speed, but if you're going to include a turn involving G, even faster to assure a margin faster than stall speed in the turn. It takes a lot of altitude after the startle factor of an EFATO to build up that additional speed, to assure a margin for pulling G in a turn. By the time most GA types have that speed and altitude, they're in downwind - from which, yes, the turn is probably now safely possible!

When authoritative training material, and the airplane flight manual give technique and limitations for a turnback after EFATO, and the pilot is trained and current, then sure, turn back. For all other circumstances, it should be considered impossible.
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Old 5th Sep 2022, 18:24
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I was taught to use essentially the same technique as used on a winch launch failure in a sailplane. First, get the nose down and establish glide speed plus a safe margin. While the aircraft accelerates, decide which option to go for. Once you have speed, manoeuvre if necessary - but if in doubt, land straight ahead as best possible. (And if manoeuvring, keep speed up well up and turn tightly). Ideally, think this through immediately before take-off so it is at the front of your mind.

In really rough country, that turn back if feasible can be a life saver - but then in really rough country, gaining altitude as close to the field as possible is also a good plan !
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Old 5th Sep 2022, 18:34
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Juan Brown updated his video post I see
UPDATE 3 Sept- Sherm reached about 1000', radioed in 'loosing oil pressure'. Turned back towards the airport to land runway 12. Lowered the landing gear for landing. Loud 'Bang' was heard, aircraft pitched down steeply to impact
Seems if the gear was dropped he would have thought the aircraft could make the runway.
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Old 5th Sep 2022, 19:11
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Sherm was a consummate pilot.
if anyone could have pulled his a:: out of it, he would have.
im glad he died doing what he loved.
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Old 6th Sep 2022, 08:16
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Originally Posted by 212man View Post
Entirely true, of course, and an expansion on my point. It just bugs me to see the myth that it is 'impossible' constantly perpetuated.
Quite:
We had a EFTO with a Mooney at Peterborough. I was A&E in the right seat and got busy with the engine. The CPL in the left seat had a lot of experience in different types of light aircraft (actually had two previous dead sticks there, but with plenty of height and speed)
Ahead didn't look to comfortable, so he elected to turn back. Not enough height to do much of a circuit, or to get back on the c/line, so landed across the runway (grass).
There was a hedge in the light, so he said "If you think we can clear it, get the gear down" This model had the manual gear, so I unclipped the lever and as the hedge went out of sight under the nose, banged it down, just in time for contact. No damage. ( Failure was the injection unit)

But, the Yak, with all its mods, a very different beast. Any idea of the stall speed?

Niel Williams did the test flight in a Yak 11 back in the 70s. It had been acquired and restored by Personal Plane Services. But had no notes on performance of handling. (The Russians, when asked, said point blank, " You don't have a Yak 11")
He commented on looking round it that the wings had 'tip stall' written all over them. The test flight was 'interesting'...He wrote it up for Pilot Mag(?)
DW
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Old 6th Sep 2022, 08:38
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Niel Williams did the test flight in a Yak 11 back in the 70s.
That would have been a standard Yak-11 with a 31' wingspan and a 700 HP Shvetsov Ash-21 seven-cylinder single-row radial weighing 1100 pounds.

Czech
Matę had clipped wings (?) and a 2800 HP PW R2800 eighteen-cylinder two-row radial weighing 2400 pounds.
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Old 6th Sep 2022, 08:53
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I think I saw a clip of Czech Mate landing in Juan Brown's video with no flaps - I know several unlimiteds have been flapless to save weight, etc...
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Old 6th Sep 2022, 09:11
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RAF instructors on single engined trainers were required to practice turn backs every month as part of their continuation training and a crew briefing was given across the cockpit about intentions in “ the event of an EFATO”. I flew from a grass airfield and got very used to the manoeuvre but I soon realised that in any wind above 10 knots it was usually better to land within 30-45 degrees of the climb out track because of the landing ground speed aspects of a turn back.

A turn back in 15 knots of headwind results in an extra 30 knots of ground speed over a straight ahead landing. Making the “impossible” turn only to run into something at 30 knots after landing is still going to hurt a lot.
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Old 6th Sep 2022, 18:51
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It constantly amazes me that large warbirds that are operated nowadays ,do not fit a `feather prop`system,as any failure generally leads to the prop going into a `fine-pitch` situation,leading to excessive `flat-plate`drag,and upsetting the aerodynamics .I know single -engined aircraft with `Constant-speed` props ,in event of losing oil pressure should have the prop lever pulled back to as `coarse` as possible,for as long as possible,as it will improve your glide angle and reduce the rate of descent,but it seems it doesn`t necessarily appear in POHs,or people are not aware of it..I know people will say it wasn`t designed in warbirds originally and would require a modification to a seperate oil tank,and pumps,but then most BIG engines are mainly ex-civilian off airliners,so should be capable of retro-fit....
It was always in the forefront of my mind ,watching the oil pressure gauge in a big s/e TBM during air displays.....
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Old 6th Sep 2022, 20:24
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Sycamore, as I recall, Steve Hinton's biggest problem when he crashed in Red Baron was the prop blades going flat when the Griffon seized. Thank God he survived a crash that turned the Mustang into confetti. When he stuck a Griffon 56 in a Spitfire PRXIX to go after a time to height record, he ensured he could control the prop pitch if the engine quit... he wrote up the story behind the Spitfire installation and was kind enough to let me nick it for the mag I was involved with at the time.
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