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After 5 hours...

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After 5 hours...

Old 5th Sep 2018, 14:12
  #41 (permalink)  
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which if set to give a central Ball, needs about 2 ounces of pressure on the right aileron to stop the aircraft doing a 60 mile radius turn.
And by selecting fuel burn from one tank only, you might get that down to one then no ounces of force as the flight progresses!
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Old 5th Sep 2018, 15:05
  #42 (permalink)  
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Which reminds me of another daft question: If (in a C172), I have fuel switch to both, and one tank runs dry, will that cause problems? I'm thinking that since it is purely a gravity feed an empty tank linked to a full one should not cause problems. Or could there be circumstances in which I might pull-in a slug of air? I am sure that is not a desirable or likely situation, but it would be nice to know!
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Old 5th Sep 2018, 16:24
  #43 (permalink)  
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To allow the "5 hour" discussion to continue with less drift, a new thread for lateral balance discussion:

Lateral balance
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Old 6th Sep 2018, 15:09
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@double_barrel:

I'm a bit late to this party I know, but re the "death grip" - I think I read this whole thread and didn't see mention of a tip I got here on PPRuNe and still use to this day in the air (and in the car on a long motorway cruise). I couldn't get by with thumb and one/two fingers, I naturally wanted to hold the yoke with the hand. As you start to tighten the grip though, your body tenses and you get in a positive feedback loop. To break this, when you realise you are holding too tight, put a 90 degree bend at your wrists! So arms held as normal but with the wrist joint outside and next to the yoke, then wrist bent in 90 degrees, then hand, fingers and thumbs on the yoke as "normal". It turns out that in that position, it's very difficult to grip the yoke hard and as the grip therefore relaxes, you get positive feedback the other way!

Re taxiing, glad you are getting the hang of it. It took me a while too having done lots of cycling when I was young so I was pre-programmed in the reverse sense in the same way as a soap-boxing custardprc. The way I re-learnt was to use a pc sim with rudder and yoke controls. It cost me £130 on ebay, and 3 years later after my PPL was safely earned, I sold it on ebay - for £130!!!! I really really don't want to start the debate on using flight sims during training, but for that one particular thing it suited me very well. Lots on here disagree you should even fire a sim up whilst training though, YMMV.
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Old 6th Sep 2018, 18:32
  #45 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Kolossi View Post
@double_barrel:

I'm a bit late to this party I know, but re the "death grip" - I think I read this whole thread and didn't see mention of a tip I got here on PPRuNe and still use to this day in the air (and in the car on a long motorway cruise). I couldn't get by with thumb and one/two fingers, I naturally wanted to hold the yoke with the hand. As you start to tighten the grip though, your body tenses and you get in a positive feedback loop. To break this, when you realise you are holding too tight, put a 90 degree bend at your wrists! So arms held as normal but with the wrist joint outside and next to the yoke, then wrist bent in 90 degrees, then hand, fingers and thumbs on the yoke as "normal". It turns out that in that position, it's very difficult to grip the yoke hard and as the grip therefore relaxes, you get positive feedback the other way!

Re taxiing, glad you are getting the hang of it. It took me a while too having done lots of cycling when I was young so I was pre-programmed in the reverse sense in the same way as a soap-boxing custardprc. The way I re-learnt was to use a pc sim with rudder and yoke controls. It cost me £130 on ebay, and 3 years later after my PPL was safely earned, I sold it on ebay - for £130!!!! I really really don't want to start the debate on using flight sims during training, but for that one particular thing it suited me very well. Lots on here disagree you should even fire a sim up whilst training though, YMMV.
Thanks for the 'grip' advice. I will try that. I thought I had it dealt with until my first more-or-less unaided landing, then I realized that I was back to the death grip and over-controlling.

The rudder thing is now way better, both on the ground and in the air. I did wonder if a sim would help me to build the right instincts and to run through procedures, checklists etc in sequence at the appropriate time. Sounds like it's contentious on here! I certainly find that sitting down and running through things in my head really helps. I see a big jump in performance at the next lesson if I have done that and am really mentally prepared, compared to rushing from work, racing through traffic, dashing into the aircraft and screwing it up.

Last edited by double_barrel; 7th Sep 2018 at 04:02.
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Old 6th Sep 2018, 19:43
  #46 (permalink)  
 
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double_barrel,

I'm happy to hear you are progressing. Your story is deją vu for me and I'm sure for many others here. Eventually you'll reach the stage where the mechanical aspects of controlling the aeroplane become automatic and you can concentrate on navigation, looking out and having fun.

With regards to simulators, my view is they are useful when learning instrument procedures, but at your stage, so much of the learning experience is dependent on the feel of the controls and you just don't get that experience in a simulator, even fairly sophisticated ones like a Redbird.
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Old 6th Sep 2018, 19:44
  #47 (permalink)  
 
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Double Barrel, you mention about the fuel selector switch. When this is set to 'Both' the supply pipes from each wing tank are joined together, before they go to the Carburettor. So if there is any difference in height of the tanks, the fuel will drain from the higher one into the lower one.
I parked at Shobdon one day with one wheel in a hollow, when we returned from our lunch, the left tank was overflowing and the right tank was down to half full. The fuel only moves slowly between each tank, so if that happened in flight, you would be holding progressively more aileron for S+L flight.
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Old 7th Sep 2018, 02:55
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And the fuel selector on low wing doesn't have a 'both' because in a low fuel situation it would prefer to suck air from the empty tank , rather than fuel being drawn from the tank with fuel remaining. ...
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Old 7th Sep 2018, 04:50
  #49 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by scifi View Post
Double Barrel, you mention about the fuel selector switch. When this is set to 'Both' the supply pipes from each wing tank are joined together, before they go to the Carburettor. So if there is any difference in height of the tanks, the fuel will drain from the higher one into the lower one.
I parked at Shobdon one day with one wheel in a hollow, when we returned from our lunch, the left tank was overflowing and the right tank was down to half full. The fuel only moves slowly between each tank, so if that happened in flight, you would be holding progressively more aileron for S+L flight.
Thanks, that is clear. I had wondered if there was a non return valve to prevent such cross-flow - in my other world we work to keep fuel tanks isolated from each other in case one is contaminated.

Originally Posted by custardpsc View Post
And the fuel selector on low wing doesn't have a 'both' because in a low fuel situation it would prefer to suck air from the empty tank , rather than fuel being drawn from the tank with fuel remaining. ...
Aha! I did not know that. Again super helpful for me to understand these things. I guess that means that a dodgy fuel gauge on a high wing is not much concern if the tanks have been dipped, but more problematic on a low wing.
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Old 7th Sep 2018, 13:06
  #50 (permalink)  
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The fuel in a Cessna which has a "both / L / R / off" type selector will flow tank to tank if the selector is in the "both" position. In "L"/ "R"/ or "off" the fuel will be isolated to the respective tank. Though nice to be able to isolate contaminated fuel, it is unlikely that you'd be able to detect and then diagnose contaminated fuel in flight. More importantly, being able to use fuel from only one tank allows the pilot to: manage lateral balance, consume fuel very accurately from tank to tank for long range fuel planning (not really much a of a factor in two tank arrangements), and allow you to burn the remaining fuel deliberately first, if that tank is leaking, and thereafter isolate the leaving tank so you don't crossfeed and leak out fuel from the other tank. I've had to do this twice. On the "both" selection, the fuel between the two wing tanks can (and will) crossfeed and equalize through the fuel selector. If a tank is full, or overflowing because the aircraft is parked on a lateral angle, the fuel can also crossfeed between the tank vent spaces. This cannot be prevented by pilot action, other than assuring that full Cessnas are parked level, or slightly right wing low. Cessna 206, 207 and 210 do not have a "both" selection, and interestingly, you have to select through the "off" position to change tanks. This spooks pilots the first time they have to do that!

Yes, the low wing aircraft do not have a "both" selection for the reason stated, and more literally, because it is a design requirement that if there is to be a "both" selection available, the tank's vent spaces much be interconnected, and this is not possible in a low wing tank, dihedral wing arrangement. I think it's a better system anyway, as the fuel is always isolated, and it forces better pilot discipline in fuel management, and lateral trimming.

Yes, the lightest possible touch on the controls. You can always firm it up if needed. Death grip is never required. If you're gripping the controls too tightly, your own muscle competition within your hand and arm will mask valuable force feedback which will be coming through the controls. Let the plane tell you what it's doing first, and then you impose your control over that, rather than in spite of it!
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Old 8th Sep 2018, 04:08
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Originally Posted by Pilot DAR View Post
. Let the plane tell you what it's doing first, and then you impose your control over that, rather than in spite of it!
I use a "freeze" call when I am teaching. When the students hears me say "freeze" they are to hold the control wheel/stick lightly but steadily and not move it. This will invariable stop the airplane from flopping around and quickly restore the airplane to stable flight.
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Old 8th Sep 2018, 05:48
  #52 (permalink)  
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Thanks all, I am finding this really useful. I hope you don't mind if I keep throwing stuff onto this thread.

Originally Posted by Pilot DAR View Post
Let the plane tell you what it's doing first, and then you impose your control over that, rather than in spite of it!
That was one of the stranger bad habits I got into with the previous instructors. I was tentatively tweaking the throttle and the trim trying to encourage the plane do what I wanted, rather than actively controlling it. Having that pointed-out to me was the single most transformational instructor input I got. The new bloke watched for a few minutes then said, fly the damn plane, put the revs at 2300, put the nose where you want it and trim it. It sounds bizarre, but no-one had ever said that and I was being way too tentative.
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Old 8th Sep 2018, 11:36
  #53 (permalink)  
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I certainly find that sitting down and running through things in my head really helps
Yup. Long before I was old enough to start taking flying lessons, I had access to an abandoned Cessna 185 fuselage. It still had most of the controls and instruments. Nothing "worked", but it did in my mind. I would practice for hours, entertaining myself with my piloting prowess. When I was finally allowed to leave the ground in a Cessna, all the controls and instruments were ingrained in my mind, other than these worked! I knew the "whats" and "wheres", I just had to then perfect the "hows". I found piloting easy, and advanced pleasingly. My only delay was waiting to be old enough to take each next licensing step.

It costs nothing to sit in a parked plane, and rehearse piloting...
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Old 8th Sep 2018, 19:25
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It costs nothing to sit in a parked plane, and rehearse piloting

on a rainy no flying day would send students to do that and run through checks. Saved them £s and boosted confidence the next flying day
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Old 1st Oct 2018, 19:20
  #55 (permalink)  
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I was prompted by the thread on circuit trouble to post an update.

I did hour 12 last weekend. I am definitely not a sky god! I guess it is going sort of ok, I have had 6 sessions of circuits with multiple touch and go's on each session. It seems to be taking forever for me to get comfortable with the approach and landing. It's always very messy. Maybe I could blame the fact that it is VERY busy with loads of traffic to watch out for and adjust the circuit accordingly, with the complexity of comms with a busy and not easily understandable ATC - I am constantly failing to hear or understand calls and the accuracy with which I am getting to and holding the desired altitude is decidedly wobbly.

The airport is so damn busy that the downwind is constantly being extended - base legs 6nm downwind are common and once we extended to 9nm downwind before turning 'base'. We invariably have to extend and then slot into the final approach among stuff including Dash 8's and CRJs. My handling of the aircraft was still pretty rubbish last time, but although the instructor did not seem impressed, I was actually pleased that for the 1st time I felt on top of the maneuvering and dodging. And to add complexity, these are right hand circuits; I have never flown a left hand circuit. So I am constantly having to look through the instructor to keep an eye on the situation. I guess (hope?!) that makes it significantly harder.

Last edited by double_barrel; 2nd Oct 2018 at 05:35.
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Old 3rd Oct 2018, 16:58
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Originally Posted by pasta View Post
Rather than thinking of someone learning to sail a large wheel-steered yacht (everyone knows how to operate a steering wheel), think of someone learning to helm a relatively tippy dinghy with a tiller extension. It takes a while even for them to learn which way to move the tiller. Now add in the fact that they have a sheet in the other hand, and moving either sheet or tiller seems to want to make the boat capsize one way or the other. Half the time the boat feels like it wants to capsize even if they don't move either. The only way to feel "in control" is to figure out how to coordinate the tiller and sheet, *and* respond to the constantly changing wind. That's before we've thrown in manoeuvres, collision avoidance etc, and it feels like you have to learn it all at once. Now think how "in control" your student's going to feel after 5 hours in the boat; if they're much over 20 years old, the answer's most likely going to be "not very". IMHO, that's closer to what learning to fly is like. Stick with it, you'll "get" it, and ultimately you'll have just as good a feel for an aircraft as you already do for a boat...
Great advice - I fly and sail and you just have to re-write the book when you swap between the two. Boats are big and lumbering if you are used to yachts - a Cessna requires precision control/small movements.
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Old 4th Oct 2018, 03:59
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Originally Posted by double_barrel View Post
I was prompted by the thread on circuit trouble to post an update.

I did hour 12 last weekend. I am definitely not a sky god! I guess it is going sort of ok, I have had 6 sessions of circuits with multiple touch and go's on each session. It seems to be taking forever for me to get comfortable with the approach and landing. It's always very messy. Maybe I could blame the fact that it is VERY busy with loads of traffic to watch out for and adjust the circuit accordingly, with the complexity of comms with a busy and not easily understandable ATC - I am constantly failing to hear or understand calls and the accuracy with which I am getting to and holding the desired altitude is decidedly wobbly.

The airport is so damn busy that the downwind is constantly being extended - base legs 6nm downwind are common and once we extended to 9nm downwind before turning 'base'. We invariably have to extend and then slot into the final approach among stuff including Dash 8's and CRJs. My handling of the aircraft was still pretty rubbish last time, but although the instructor did not seem impressed, I was actually pleased that for the 1st time I felt on top of the maneuvering and dodging. And to add complexity, these are right hand circuits; I have never flown a left hand circuit. So I am constantly having to look through the instructor to keep an eye on the situation. I guess (hope?!) that makes it significantly harder.
You've heard a lot of people talk about things taking time. One of the more important things to learn which you can only learn through repetition is how to divide your attention efficiently so that you can monitor radio calls, operate the aircrafts systems, fly it where you want it, listen to your instructor, and relax (at this stage that takes conscious effort), all at the same time. Watching your instructor fly shows you it can be done, but you need to learn the "how" yourself.
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Old 4th Oct 2018, 04:35
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Originally Posted by flyinkiwi View Post
You've heard a lot of people talk about things taking time. One of the more important things to learn which you can only learn through repetition is how to divide your attention efficiently so that you can monitor radio calls, operate the aircrafts systems, fly it where you want it, listen to your instructor, and relax (at this stage that takes conscious effort), all at the same time. Watching your instructor fly shows you it can be done, but you need to learn the "how" yourself.
Yep, the difference is striking. There I am constantly fiddling with stuff and ending-up climbing or descending when I should be level or letting the speed drift off. He seems to do nothing - the plane just does exactly what he wants! I clearly still need to free-up some brain resources.

My last ****-up was failing to lower the flaps when I thought I had. I flipped the selector up to raise the flaps on the touch and go and failed to put it back to the centre position. So next circuit I reached out and put it down for a few seconds, and glanced at the indicator, but my brain was already onto the next thing so I failed to take-in the fact that I had done nothing with the flaps except move the selector from raise to off and back again! It's very strange, thinking back over it, my fingers felt the selector was wrong, my eyes saw the indicator had not moved, but I did not absorb and use the information! Ah well, I am getting more comfortable and getting more thinking time, but I sometimes think I am learning more about my strange brain than I am about flying!
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Old 4th Oct 2018, 05:42
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db,

After a while, you will be able to sense when the flaps are travelling, due to the change in pitch forces on the yoke.
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Old 4th Oct 2018, 06:39
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Originally Posted by double_barrel View Post
Yep, the difference is striking. There I am constantly fiddling with stuff and ending-up climbing or descending when I should be level or letting the speed drift off. He seems to do nothing - the plane just does exactly what he wants! I clearly still need to free-up some brain resources.
double_barrel, your posts made me laugh because they mirror somewhat my experiences. When I started it felt like I'd never get the hand of taxying - why was it so hard! However, after 7 hours I had a great lesson where everything started to click. We landed and on taxying back to the apron I noticed one rather tight spot to park the aircraft, bugger I thought - this is where I mess it all up! Someone must have been looking down on me because no, I fitted it in like a pro and that was the biggest grin factor for me that day.
Needless to say, my eldest daughter brought me down to earth when I got home and I regaled my 'biggles' moment. "Great", she said. " A thousand pounds spent and you can park it" - to say I was deflated was an understatement
I have just found that some lessons you feel like "What, When, oh Now" and then the next two lessons along it seems to drop into place. Aviation is a mix of science and art, I'm just not sure when the enjoyment starts and the terror ends.
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