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Full checklist pre-flight check after brief shut down

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Full checklist pre-flight check after brief shut down

Old 15th Feb 2016, 05:52
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Full checklist pre-flight check after brief shut down

What's the general consensus for doing checks after a relatively short shut down, say for example shutting down to drop a passenger, or taking a pee etc., do most folks taxi to the engine run up area and run all items on the checklist like they do for the first flight of the day, or do most folks use an expedited list like take off config, mags, prop + gauges as they taxi to the hold short line?
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 06:17
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pb84,

I fly glider tow-planes, which involves lots of short-term shut downs. The normal procedure for most pilots, is a run-up at the beginning of the day, but after that, it is start up and taxi to position and then do a left-to right scan, while waiting for the rope to be hooked up.

When ready, a double-check of the flaps and cowl-flaps and a full-and-free controls check (probably THE most important check in my opinion) before opening the throttle.
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 06:28
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I42 (off topic) did you see what happened over the LA harbor last week, I flew thru the day before, the same route we took in our 172 trip. That's why I mentioned keep your eyes peeled !!
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 09:25
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I generally reserve the full monty for the first flight of the day, but I do like to do a full engine runup if I've taken on fuel, and always do a quick visual tyre check.
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 09:30
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If you have shut down at least do a magcheck as it is the likeliest time to foul a plug .
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 09:40
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If the engine has been shut down, and restarted, do the full run up as for an initial start.

If you have just landed and taxied for another takeoff, without shutting down the engine, I don't think that's necessary.

Always do the full 'Vital Actions' check every time, though. (The one that goes: Trim, Throttle, Prop, Mixture, Mags, Fuel, Flaps, Gauges, Gyros, Hatches, Harnesses, Controls full and free, as appropriate for your aircraft.)


MJ
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 10:14
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MJ

There are items which you need to do on a cold initial start like exercising the prop which you don't need to do after that initial start

It is worth marking or rewriting an abbreviated checklist.

On a single pilot operation its also possible to do the checks from memory and once everything is started and up and running to scan down the checklist and confirm you haven't missed anything.

On a new type or aircraft you don't know back to front blindfolded it is safer to fully run the checklist until you do know it blindfolded

Pace
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 10:46
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I would suggest that exercising the prop, (albeit once, rather than three times) is worthwhile after subsequent restarts.

If you do these checks from a list, or from memory is up to you.


MJ
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 11:51
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Halfway into my training the instructor instructs me to do a full stop landing well before the lesson block is over. We taxi to the platform, he gives me the usual pre-solo briefing and off I go on my own for the first time. Being nervous, I do go for the full runup even though the aircraft was perfectly fine just minutes before. And I find rough running on the left magneto. Which subsequently turned out to be a broken spark plug.

Since that incident I perform a quick magneto check every time I'm at the hold. Regardless of what happened before that flight.

A quick magneto/prop/carb heat/T&P/idle check, done from memory, takes about 30 seconds if you know what you're doing. And if you are not proficient enough to do it from memory in about 30 seconds, may I suggest you religiously stick to the checklist?
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 17:06
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If I haven't shut down (pattern work etc) then I don't do any checks.

If I've shut down and left the aircraft, say for lunch or to fly something else, then I go through the whole thing except only a single pull on the prop. It only takes a few seconds.

I've never really been sure what the three pulls on the prop are for, though I do it anyway. One of my instructors tells me it's a waste of time, another goes a funny colour if I don't do it. On my own, I do it for the first flight of the day.
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 17:24
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Originally Posted by n5296s
what the three pulls on the prop are for
This is to make sure you've replaced all the (cold) oil in the CU with (slightly) warmer oil.

If you've got cold (thicker) oil in the CSU then it can prevent it smoothly adjusting the pitch - resulting in hunting.

OC619
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 17:44
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I've never really been sure what the three pulls on the prop are for, though I do it anyway. One of my instructors tells me it's a waste of time, another goes a funny colour if I don't do it. On my own, I do it for the first flight of the day.
Here's what an old WW2 fighter pilot once told me, and I still remember today:

'On the first pull, check the RPM drop.

On the second pull check the engine oil pressure for excessive drop during the cycle.

On the last pull check for oil pi**ing out between the spinner and cowling.'

The three cycles also circulate warm engine oil through the CSU and actuator for the purpose stated by OC619 above.


MJ
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 18:03
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Not sure if its an old wife's tale, but I was told cycling the prop 3 times was a carryover from the old WW2 Hellcats, Bearcats etc, that had such large quantities of oil needed to move the CS unit it took 3 cycles to ensure a complete transfer of warm oil into a cold unit. Todays spam cans in comparison are small units and only one cycle is needed and the only reason to cycle it 3 times is to allow you time to check the gauges individually for MAP, RPM and oil pressure.
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 18:36
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During pre-flight I do four pull throughs of the prop for no other reason other than to check that there is not a questionable valve prior to power up.
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 19:14
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I would suggest that exercising the prop, (albeit once, rather than three times) is worthwhile after subsequent restarts.
Something that was suggested to me, during a check-out, was to allow the rpm to stabilize during the last pull of the blue knob, to check that the governor is actually governing.
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 20:46
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Since that incident I perform a quick magneto check every time I'm at the hold. Regardless of what happened before that flight.
You should do a mag check before lining up regardless of engine stop or not
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 20:53
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True Virgins Make Dull Company....I can remember the memory aid, but forget what it stood for...
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 22:18
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The OP asked about doing the full checklist but the thread has centred around the engine and propellor. There are other things to consider. What if a lot of back trim had been applied on approach? From memory the Bonanza required nose down trim for takeoff. Some nose up forces may be uncontrollable or at the least one hell of a surprise. You also need to consider flap and tank selection. If you are considering a quick turnaround when arriving, you may miss some after landing checks which may set you up for an exciting departure. Checking all items won't kill you.
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Old 15th Feb 2016, 23:25
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True Virgins Make Dull Company....I can remember the memory aid, but forget what it stood for...
Same with me. I had trouble with the RAF's "My Friend Fred ..." during my Chipmunk days, so I just learnt "Mixture, Fuel, Flaps, Hatches, Harness, Brakes off."

It still stands me in good stead after many years, with just a prefix of "Gear down" or "Undercarriage down", depending where I'm flying!
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Old 16th Feb 2016, 05:11
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I train "Configuration Assurance". This means that every time you change a configuration of flight, or are about to do the next thing in the plane, you mentally remind yourself to assure the configuration is correct for that next thing you're going to do (that the plane may not know about yet!). If that configuration assurance includes your use of a checklist, that's up to you. But don't forget to go through the mental exercise.

What could go wrong during that next phase of flight? Anticipate the things which are going to be safety or flight threatening, and check them.

For RG pilots, the simple application of "Gear Down" as a check may be flawed. I prefer to state out loud for every normal landing either: "The wheels are down for landing on land", or "The wheels are up for landing on water". Now I realize that many pilots fly aircraft which are not designed to land on water twice, but the mental and probably verbal exercise is good because: You want to be thinking about the landing gear position, and why it is there. You might be forced into an abnormal landing, and want the wheels up to belly it in, or because you've had a partial failure. In that case, you do not want your brain reverting to the muscle memory of "wheels down", as you will not get the outcome you desire. If you do that in an amphibian on the water, you're about to destroy a plane, and risk drowning.

Don't let your use of checklists become rote, do the item stated in the checklist because you understand that it needs to be done, and why - configuration assurance. Use the checklist to check that you have already assured configuration, not as a "to do" list of how to fly the plane.
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