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After 5 hours...

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After 5 hours...

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Old 4th Oct 2018, 11:33
  #61 (permalink)  
 
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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.

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!
It took me a few lessons more than I was expecting to get comfortable landing, although it is a much shorter and quieter circuit than yours - sounds awful! The crazy thing with all of this is your mind takes on board a trickle of information at a time and then files it away. So next time you won't think about what to say on the radio, you will just say it - your flare will be just right, or your glide path will be spot on. It doesn't all fall into place at once - each element will do slowly and then you will have the capacity to learn something else. As has been said, the thought of reading a map and flying seemed ridiculous to start with, never mind asking for a basic service and listening out constantly whilst scanning for traffic! Still a lot to do but not quite the mountain to climb as it used to be.
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Old 4th Oct 2018, 21:38
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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.
Two comments about this.

Firstly, the climbing and descending when you don't want to be is cured by using elevator trim. Get used to trimming a lot. Any time you raise or flower flap, or change the attitude and/or power setting there will be a corresponding trim change. If you have the time and money, go up and spend a lesson on trimming the plane to fly hands off. When you get it right you can change the attitude of the aircraft simply by leaning forward or backward - it's like magic. Get into the habit of constantly asking yourself, am I in trim?, and doing something about it if you are not.

The second comment is about why your instructor appears to do nothing but the plane flies like its on rails. There is a concept you may have heard of called "flying ahead of the plane". The most basic explanation is putting your brain ahead of where you actually are so that any changes in desired flight path are noticed immediately and dealt with. Your instructor is making the tiniest of adjustments of the controls in the correct sense to keep the aircraft exactly where they want it to be. You are probably at a point in your training where you spend more time reacting to what the aircraft is doing rather than positively controlling it and making it do what you want it to do. That is called "being behind the aircraft". This is one of those things that just requires hours of stick time to learn. You'll get there one day, remember we all (including your instructor) have been where you are.
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Old 5th Oct 2018, 05:23
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Originally Posted by flyinkiwi View Post
This is one of those things that just requires hours of stick time to learn. You'll get there one day, remember we all (including your instructor) have been where you are.
Thanks! I need those reminders! I know it is true - I can steer a boat downwind in a quartering sea while drinking a cup of coffee and chatting about the nav plan, while a beginner is rigid with grim determination, fighting the wheel and lurching all over the place. That's the stage I am at in flying. Summarizing my challenges and unloading on you lot helps me to crystallize the issue. eg - having thought through my flaps screw-up and posted it here, I know I won't make that mistake again!
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Old 5th Oct 2018, 06:53
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db,

flyinkiwi has hit the nail on the head:

Get into the habit of constantly asking yourself, am I in trim?, and doing something about it if you are not.
If you are having to apply any push or pull force on the yoke, you are not in trim. Adjust the trim wheel until there is no force and you can take your hand of the yoke, without the nose rising or falling.

If you briefly take your hand off every time you re-trim, your instructor will also know that you are in trim AND that you understand the concept. Re-trim every time you establish a new pitch attitude and/or power/flap setting, but don't forget to let the airspeed stabilize before trying to finalize your trim setting. This final adjustment can be very subtle - one or two degrees of rotation of the trim wheel.
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Old 5th Oct 2018, 13:46
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I know I won't make that mistake again!
And that's a very important learning tool - the screw up! Happily, nearly all screw ups amount to nothing more than a slightly less ideal or safe condition, and a learning opportunity. I can think back to hundreds of my screw ups while flying (and a few while riding right seat), and what I learned from them. What I learned stuck, as the screw up was memorable. The key is to put your faith in the aircraft itself, and the competence of your instructor in allowing you to screw up enough that you learn from it, without it actually being unsafe! You will be amazed at what the plane can tolerate in terms of errant operation, and you still get away with it. That's not a suggestion that you should try, but don't worry about imperfection either.
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Old 5th Oct 2018, 15:34
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5 hours - it takes at least 20 hours to become a sky god.

Just stick with it😊
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Old 6th Oct 2018, 08:12
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Lesson three for me yesterday - powered climb and glide decent....glide decent "Recover straight and level....., Mike, we are just about to stall.....get the power in" - lesson learnt...lol - still can't steer the chubby thing on the ground...and that is taxiing
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Old 6th Oct 2018, 10:38
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Just back from a really good lesson. Complex situations and everything was bang on...training myself so that every-time I change anything I check the P&Ts and trim.

well.... except for a near screw-up that the instructor did not notice! ATC said 'follow the dash 8 ahead'. I had been watching a dash-8 on finals, off to my right, so replied 'follow the dash-8' and was about to turn in when the instructor said, there he is follow him round. Oops. Another dash-8 was ahead.That would have made me unpopular.

Last edited by double_barrel; 6th Oct 2018 at 11:56.
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Old 6th Oct 2018, 13:42
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Mike, we are just about to stall.....get the power in"
Bear in mind that a stall is an aerodynamic event, not an engine power (or not) event. Therefore the approach to stall (too high an AoA) should be corrected by reducing the AoA (lowering the nose). Though powering out of a stall may be possible, doing so is fraught with other risks, including inducing a spin with torque, or distracting/falsely reassuring the pilot to the extent that the pilot forgets to lower the nose (refer to Colgan Air Dash 8 crash). Always fly the plane first, and maintain the control you intend (being stalled is not being in control). Thereafter, apply power as needed to continue your flight. Yeah, if you're stalling at 100 feet above the ground, adding power to continue the flight is going to be pretty vital too, but first and foremost, use the aerodynamic controls to maintain the plane in controlled flight!

ATC said 'follow the dash 8 ahead'. I had been watching a dash-8 on finals, off to my right, so replied 'follow the dash-8' and was about to turn in when the instructor said, there he is follow him round. Oops. Another dash-8 was ahead.
Yeah, that happens, and has happened to me. Though you are responsible (well, your instructor, at this stage) for maintaining traffic awareness, you're being unfairly lured into an unsafe situation if your attention is being directed toward an aircraft, without your also being told that a second aircraft of the same type is nearby. I was an controlled airspace in the USA decades back, and was told to watch out for two F-4 Phantom jets on formation final crossing my path. Yeah, cool! I see them, as I watched these two smoke trail makers fly down final approach. Then two more blasted right in front of me and scared the Dickens out of me. It would have been helpful had the controller told me that there were four in total!
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Old 7th Oct 2018, 01:10
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I did the tried to taxy with the wheel choc in place thing today - and there I was thinking I was a full-on sky god😳
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Old 7th Oct 2018, 06:24
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Ebbie, you are always an apprentice sky god. I did the same thing two weeks ago. That’s exactly 2704 weeks since I went solo!

There are many times in your flying career where you will say “Let’s not do that again!”
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Old 7th Oct 2018, 08:51
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Originally Posted by Pilot DAR View Post
Bear in mind that a stall is an aerodynamic event, not an engine power (or not) event. Therefore the approach to stall (too high an AoA) should be corrected by reducing the AoA (lowering the nose). Though powering out of a stall may be possible, doing so is fraught with other risks, including inducing a spin with torque, or distracting/falsely reassuring the pilot to the extent that the pilot forgets to lower the nose (refer to Colgan Air Dash 8 crash). Always fly the plane first, and maintain the control you intend (being stalled is not being in control). Thereafter, apply power as needed to continue your flight. Yeah, if you're stalling at 100 feet above the ground, adding power to continue the flight is going to be pretty vital too, but first and foremost, use the aerodynamic controls to maintain the plane in controlled flight!
My brain was in mush mode. I am sure it will come. Just written some notes out as a re-fresher.
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Old 7th Oct 2018, 11:31
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Originally Posted by ms08 View Post
My brain was in mush mode. I am sure it will come. Just written some notes out as a re-fresher.
I know the feeling!

Welcome to the sky god wannabe thread. I like that it has morphed into beginner's therapy thread.
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Old 7th Oct 2018, 13:35
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Originally Posted by Ebbie 2003 View Post
I did the tried to taxy with the wheel choc in place thing today - and there I was thinking I was a full-on sky god😳
Someone at the field I fly from taxied away with the wing tie down blocks still attached. Only ATC stopped them from getting to the runway.
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Old 7th Oct 2018, 13:56
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My brain was in mush mode.
It happens to all of us, and by the time you have enough flying experience to truly know all these things, then complacency will set in, and you'll be fighting against mush mode from the other side. I find that memorable lessons are remembered best! When I teach, I allow my student to continue toward the mistake they're approaching, as their learning will come as they progress into the mistake, and begin to recognize it for themselves, rather than my preventing or fixing, and just telling them what could have happened. Hearing about something which did not happen is much less memorable than experiencing it!

Welcome to the sky god wannabe thread
I can remember wanting to be a sky god. I've learned that it's too much responsibility, I'm just happy to concentrate on flying safely and enjoying it now. The more I fly, the more I realize there is to be learned.
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Old 7th Oct 2018, 14:19
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Originally Posted by alex90 View Post
If you were to overcontrol the rudder on a yacht in light-moderate swell, you will do more harm than good
I've had an autopilot do that - there seemed to be some time constant in the control loop that give us positive feedback with that day's particular waves. It really did seem to be doing its best to roll the mast out of the boat.

After discussing this with the captain for a few seconds (I had the helm when this started happening) we knocked off the autopilot and steered by hand for the next few hours.
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Old 21st Oct 2018, 10:05
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Musing on the fact that everyone's experience is very different......

Things I have never done:

Turn left - ok that's a very slight exaggeration, but not much and not for many hours. Maybe I will crap myself when the plane leans the other way!
Seen the mixture at full rich
Waited less than 20 minutes for take off clearance
Had a lesson cancelled due to bad weather

Last edited by double_barrel; 21st Oct 2018 at 16:41.
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Old 25th Oct 2018, 10:26
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Originally Posted by double_barrel View Post
Musing on the fact that everyone's experience is very different......

Things I have never done:

Turn left - ok that's a very slight exaggeration, but not much and not for many hours. Maybe I will crap myself when the plane leans the other way!
Seen the mixture at full rich
Waited less than 20 minutes for take off clearance
Had a lesson cancelled due to bad weather
This has been a good read and as others have commented brought back memories, you are definitely not alone.

Left hand circuits are easier for the reason you mentioned earlier, thats why you sit on the left. You'll adapt quickly. Should have seen me trying to get used to a right slipped approach when the wind was in an unusual direction, never done that much, understood the theory but muscle memory not there, all over the shop like a one-armed paper hanger.

Surprised you don't power check or take off full rich, what are you flying and has it been explained why? I seem to recall a general direction to never lean above 75% power.

Is that 20 minutes for push back / taxi, or waiting in a queue to take off while burning your cash? If the latter I would be concerned - where is this? I also note your comments about how busy the circuit is and having to extend, which doesn't help consistency at the start. I started off at a small relatively quiet field (Panshanger) with almost no delays and little other traffic to worry about, which made getting the basics right early on much easier and learning more progressive when moving on to busier places like Stapleford.

I think perhaps you have been rather lucky with the weather this year!

On taxiing, I struggled with not feeling in control to begin with. I found there seemed to be quite a delay between foot action and meaningful aircraft response so I was often late heading in the right direction and then over-controlling, just takes time to get in synch. It actually reminded me a bit of trying to steer a boat vs a car.
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Old 25th Oct 2018, 12:22
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Originally Posted by Weeeee View Post
This has been a good read and as others have commented brought back memories, you are definitely not alone.
Thanks, I have found it cathartic!.


Surprised you don't power check or take off full rich, what are you flying and has it been explained why? I seem to recall a general direction to never lean above 75% power.
The airfield is at 5,500'ASL. So full rich is always too rich.

Is that 20 minutes for push back / taxi, or waiting in a queue to take off while burning your cash? If the latter I would be concerned - where is this?
The latter - I am concerned! Sometime have to wait >1hour for startup permission


Left hand circuits are easier for the reason you mentioned earlier, thats why you sit on the left. You'll adapt quickly. Should have seen me trying to get used to a right slipped approach when the wind was in an unusual direction, never done that much, understood the theory but muscle memory not there, all over the shop like a one-armed paper hanger.

That reminds me, my attempts to side slip in the C172 have been very unimpressive, there does not seem to be enough rudder authority to counter even a little aileron. I had a vision of screaming-in sideways while shedding airspeed and altitude and plonking it down on the numbers! That may be Sky God level? Or maybe the little Cessna just doesn't do that ?
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Old 25th Oct 2018, 13:56
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Yes, the C172 doesn't loose too much more height in a side-slip. I even felt like opening the doors to loose height into Welshpool, but went around from 300 feet above the threshold instead. The low wingers are much better to side-slip, including the Tomahawk, and the wooden K8 glider is particularly good.
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