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Jacobson Flare

Old 18th Nov 2015, 11:25
  #41 (permalink)  
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I've seen some that can flare 'OK' without looking to the end of the runway, but I tell you what, they're all hopeless in a crosswind.

During the flare its all about controlling attitude - looking at the horizon is the best way to control the attitude and if you do what comes naturally to point the aircraft straight down the centreline i.e. nose straight then naturally you HAVE to give it a little bank, just a little, to stop it drifting.

Jacobsen is just an mathematical representation of the above.

Mach E Avelli's description on page one (motorcycles - look where your want to go) actually would work well for a carrier arrival I'd say
I prefer to look and go more or less parallel to the runway for the last couple of feet, not straight at it!
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Old 18th Nov 2015, 12:08
  #42 (permalink)  
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"I've seen some that can flare 'OK' without looking to the end of the runway, but I tell you what, they're all hopeless in a crosswind".

Seriously, why make such stupid comments?!

Somehow people have managed to land very successfully and smoothly for decades (yours included) in all manner of crosswinds and different aircraft types.

Making a statement as definitive as that above is foolish.

It's not that hard.

Go put some thought in how to land a manned vehicle on mars or something because this little mystery of aviation was adequately solved by Wilbur and Orville some time ago.

Last edited by Al E. Vator; 18th Nov 2015 at 12:12. Reason: addition
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Old 18th Nov 2015, 12:38
  #43 (permalink)  
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Just an honest observation.

I agree with you about not overcomplicating things; not advocating the mathematical flare at all. Just saying you've got to look, no, SEE, where the aircraft is going to control it in all 3 dimensions and that involves not staring at the aiming point or the ground just in front of it, but rather, the far end of the runway or the horizon.

AFAIK this is the way its been taught since pre WWII so that may explain why everybody has so many successful landings as you say!
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Old 19th Nov 2015, 00:40
  #44 (permalink)  
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This thread reminds me of a poster I once saw on the wall of a Pilots Room somewhere. It read;

"There are three secrets in how to make a good Landing.
Unfortunately, no-one knows what they are!"
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Old 19th Nov 2015, 01:56
  #45 (permalink)  
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Jacobson flare .. made me laugh then .. makes me laugh now...
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Old 19th Nov 2015, 02:11
  #46 (permalink)  
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You don't need to have the aim point in the centre of your vision to be looking at it!!! I thought it was common practice to transfer your focus to the far end of the runway when entering the flare - it's far easier to judge your round-out and touch down if you use peripheral vision.

Also, for those of you denigrating the Jacobson Flare (and some of you even the man himself) for being too academic - maybe you need to be reminded that different people learn differently. If you don't like a highly engineered approach like this, that's your prerogative, but there are some who prefer a more articulate description of what is both a beautifully simple and incredibly complex maneuver.

Last edited by Cloud Cutter; 19th Nov 2015 at 02:30.
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Old 19th Nov 2015, 02:53
  #47 (permalink)  
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I'm going to add that to my approach brief this arvo... "I will be performing...
what is both a beautifully simple and incredibly complex maneuver.
and therefore I won't predict the outcome!"
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Old 19th Nov 2015, 04:03
  #48 (permalink)  
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Yip, that's my version of a bob each way
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Old 19th Nov 2015, 05:25
  #49 (permalink)  
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I bought the Jacobsen Flare article some years ago and it helped me improve my landings at the time - especially the "flying to the end of the runway" instruction. I had earlier had very effective help from an instructor regarding eye usage in the form of a A4 bit of paper and four globs of blue tack over the instruments to keep e looking outside. The aim point/airspeed mantra on approach. followed by flying to the horizon seems to work for me even in a crosswind. The time to flare? I learn that by braille

From my own experience landing is about muscle memory and sight picture. On a good day for me, everything is nice and smooth. A bad day, not so much. I have yet to determine exactly what critical personal judgements are stuffing up my landings or making them acceptable and I think my only hope is practice, practice, practice.

In a yacht, I can open a can for someone, scratch my ear and have a conversation while standing backward steering with my bum when docking in 30 knots without cracking the proverbial egg because Ive been doing it for Sixty years. I hope to attain similar capability in an aircraft one day like some of the posters here.
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Old 19th Nov 2015, 06:44
  #50 (permalink)  
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Sunfish, if you're anything like me, the day after you thought that day had come, you'll be scratching your head
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Old 20th Nov 2015, 08:54
  #51 (permalink)  
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Glekichi, looking where you want to plant it may well work for carrier arrivals - I dunno because the closest I ever came to a carrier landing was watching 'Top Gun'.
But it definitely works a treat on rough, unmarked, irregular, one way bush strips and those with obstacles all around which can create illusions if you look anywhere other than where you want to go. Some PNG strips slope up so steeply that if you looked at the far end, chances are you would be flaring at 100 feet.
As for whether those of us who did our early few thousand hours on tailwheel Cessnas and DC3s and the like are "all hopeless in a crosswind" - we would not still be here if that were the case.
The Jacobsen Flare has its place, and we were taught more or less this technique (long before Jacobsen published it) for night landings on a flare path with no glideslope information at night.
But how about we accept that other techniques work better for some of us?
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Old 20th Nov 2015, 09:00
  #52 (permalink)  
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Just put the aeroplane on the runway like a normal person would. My 5c.
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Old 20th Nov 2015, 10:08
  #53 (permalink)  
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I often think that landing is like making a golf stroke. They both require hand/eye co-ordination and timing. The best instruction I had from a golf coach was "Just hit the bl**dy thing".

I'm not very good at golf either
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Old 20th Nov 2015, 12:43
  #54 (permalink)  
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This technique and variations of it has been taught in RAAF pilot training since Dicky Williams first lapped a box kite around the flagpole. Perhaps if he had thought it to name it the 'Dick Flare', the name might have caught on!
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Old 20th Nov 2015, 13:13
  #55 (permalink)  
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Many years ago at Avalon I was an observer on the jump seat of a Qantas 707 when the captain (I think his surname was Harding?) was conducting left seat training on a first officer. I remember it well because I have never seen a F/O physically sweat so profusely as he flew the circuit. He sure was tensed up.

As he flared for landing the instructor reached over and put his hand over the eyes of the "student" and said "hold it there and do nothing and the aircraft will land itself"

Sure enough it greased on and the instructor removed his hand and they did a touch and go. Maybe that was a Harding flare as distinct from a Jacobson Flare of another era.
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Old 20th Nov 2015, 13:33
  #56 (permalink)  
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Sorry Mach E, it's half tongue in cheek but I do find it interesting that you say look where you want to go, which I honestly believe works, like you, from a mix of aeroplane and motorcycle experience.
Thing is, to flare, you can't be looking at where the aircraft was going a moment before. The mains, assuming we are talking about tricycle aircraft, are going to be some way behind you, as should be your aiming point, at the moment of touch down. Should they not?
If one keeps a constant flight path towards an aiming point and keeps going where they're looking and that does not change for the flare, there is no flare, which would then equal a carrier arrival, although, like you I have no experience post Top Gun and for all I know there could even be a little flare involved in those too but lets not let the truth get in the way of an attempt at a good story.
Ive done my share of bush flying too but it's the number of transport category multi crew aircraft pilots that have average crosswind technique to which I refer. Seems to be an inability to see/read the aircraft trajectory well and very much related to where they're looking.
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Old 20th Nov 2015, 13:52
  #57 (permalink)  
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There was an occasion when a then young RAAF 36 Sqn C-130H Hercules copilot had a load of Army troops on board. After a couple of missed approaches into a very tight ALA, as handling pilot he heard a command to "Put the f*cker down". Thinking that the command came from his Captain, he did. Then only to find out later that an Army guy had a headset...

That's a true story.

Last edited by gerry111; 20th Nov 2015 at 14:06.
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Old 20th Nov 2015, 18:23
  #58 (permalink)  
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Flying isn't a science, it's an art form..just use the force
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Old 21st Nov 2015, 01:06
  #59 (permalink)  
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Some pilots of large transport aircraft probably lose crosswind skills over time - if they ever had them in the first place. Depends on the type and whether it is tolerant to landing with drift on, and factors such as typical operating environment where crosswinds may be infrequent. Quite likely the latter is what causes crosswind skills to degrade.

Back in the day when simulators did not do the ground handling bit as well as some now do, it was common to have a period of base training circuits in the actual aircraft prior to going to line training.

Some pilots coming up from bugsmashers would have problems with the flare. A useful technique that worked when I was base training was to have them fly down the runway as close to the ground as they could get, all the while controlling speed at V approach and laying off drift to maintain the centreline. Occasionally the wheels would touch, which told them they were too low - "late on the round-out Hoskins". The aim was to get the wheels within a metre or two of the ground and just hold the aircraft at a constant height. The only way they could maintain height accurately so close to the ground was to look down and slightly ahead, certainly not at the far end of the runway which would be rapidly changing in aspect at over 100 knots of ground speed. After a few such passes, all they had to add to the skillset was to remove the drift and select idle thrust while holding the pitch attitude. As good as any autoland but more fun.

Last edited by Mach E Avelli; 21st Nov 2015 at 20:37.
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Old 22nd Nov 2015, 18:31
  #60 (permalink)  
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I've thought more about this looking at the end of the runway business (and actually taken notice of what I do when landing). I think transferring your central vision to the far end of the runway is more useful for student pilots, but as you gain experience you are able to look more directly at your aim point and use your peripheral vision to take in the horizon and runway perspective. This is definitely true for chopper pilots - start by looking at the horizon, then, as you gain experience, look at the spot and use your peripheral to gauge the horizon. I guess the main thing is that you are getting all the visual information to your brain in a way it can be processed and used to good effect, and yes, there will be various different ways of doing that. I actually tend to 'scan' between the touchdown zone and runway end. It is interesting to break down into its parts a maneuver that we stopped thinking about long ago and just 'do'.
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