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‘Left downwind’ in a right hand circuit?

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‘Left downwind’ in a right hand circuit?

Old 14th Dec 2020, 20:35
  #21 (permalink)  

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Keep up the good work tho Shy - we may be talking past each other this time but usually you are an "oasis of sanity" on this site! A rare animal indeed!
Thanks for the compliment - similarly rare on this website!

I think what this discussion has brought out is that the radio call that the OP heard was rather ambiguous. If in doubt, clarify with ATC - use the radio!
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Old 14th Dec 2020, 21:56
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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Thanks for the heads up on TCAS found this description TCAS: Preventing Mid-Air Collisions - AeroSavvy
and how Santa's sleigh is TCAS equipped, with the speed he moves I think he needs PAW, SE2, Flarm
and of course for see and be seen he has Rudolph's red nose.
I see that no GPS is used and only works by giving level changes but no heading changes.
Directional aerial and signal power seem to give location of threat when the TCAS triggers other Transponders
then they talk to each other to decide on actions or if one party has no TCAS what to do.
Seems no outside support needed. PAW does range the same way for mode C & S.



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Old 14th Dec 2020, 22:56
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ShyTorque View Post
Thanks for the compliment - similarly rare on this website!

I think what this discussion has brought out is that the radio call that the OP heard was rather ambiguous. If in doubt, clarify with ATC - use the radio!
No probs Shy! And could not agree more! Use the radio, follow whats happening around you, if in doubt, shout out and always look out for the hidden traps .... and work together. No-one is infallible (tho some are more accident-prone than others - so Mrs H 'n' H tells me each time I goof up!).

ATC have "saved" me when I've got it wrong. And I've even "saved" ATC when they've set up something that just ain't gonna work!

Teamwork (at every level) is what keeps us all safe! Just a humble observation after 40 years in various fields of Aviation!

As I said, I'll step back - I've bored you all enough!!
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Old 15th Dec 2020, 00:04
  #24 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Fl1ingfrog View Post
Not confusing at all - it was utter rubbish! You had your wits about you and queried things. You then, I presume, got on with it in the proper way. From the phrasing as you quote it, it doesn't sound like a qualified ATC to me by the way. Remember a qualified controller is never in charge of your aeroplane and never wants to be. So, never let your guard down because we all make mistakes, ATC no less.
I don’t agree with you there Fl1! Although context is very relevant, it was a perfectly reasonable bit of ATC-ing. The circuit was clearly RH, yet ATC wanted the joiner to position on the LH side for the join. If ATC knew there was unlikely to be any confliction with existing cct traffic turning Final at the same time (or base-leg if it was a square cct), then no issue whatsoever.

Regarding the phraseology, if ATC hadn't used ‘LH’ the the joiner would probably have (incorrectly) assumed they were meant to join RH downwind. Having frequently operated at one particular airfield with a normally RH cct, we have to fly a LH cct (wont bore you with why). We therefore specifically ask to join for “Two-two-left”, not just “Two-two” with the assumption that by not saying “right” it must be left. At another airfield nearby, due to vastly different cct speeds, they operate a mix of left and right-hand ccts for visual traffic - albeit we invariable include “north-side or “south-side” to confirm where we are!
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Old 15th Dec 2020, 00:19
  #25 (permalink)  
 
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I heard "left traffic" like a billion times...ATC is a priority therefore if they say make left traffic that's what you do

Last edited by Pugilistic Animus; 15th Dec 2020 at 00:55.
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Old 15th Dec 2020, 07:22
  #26 (permalink)  
 
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In reply to H Peacock, referring to the OP's original post, the whole point of the post is that "Join left downwind" is ambiguous, how does this convey that the cct is "Clearly RH"?
It is difficult not knowing if there was any prior communication, especially if ATC knew position of plane relative to cct; if you were dealing with a tyro who was on the dead side and understood this to mean join downwind for a LH cct, that's a lot of holes in the cheese lined up.
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Old 15th Dec 2020, 12:51
  #27 (permalink)  
 
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According to DOC4444:

b) JOIN [(direction of circuit)] (position in circuit) (runway number) [SURFACE] WIND (direction and speed) (units) [TEMPERATURE [MINUS] (number)] QNH (or QFE) (number) [(units)] [TRAFFIC (detail)];

According to DOC9432

4.6.1 Requests for instructions to join the traffic circuit should be made in sufficient time to allow for a planned entry into the circuit taking other traffic into account. When the traffic circuit is in a right-hand pattern this should be specified. A left-hand pattern need not be specified although it may be advisable to do so if there has been a recent change where the circuit direction is variable.

Further:
"G-CD JOIN RIGHT HAND DOWNWIND RUNWAY 34 WIND 330 DEGREES 10 KNOTS QNH 1012"

So to sum it up, DOC444 and 9432 does not seem to consider a published right hand circuit, and how to act in that case.
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Old 15th Dec 2020, 13:03
  #28 (permalink)  
 
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Reading back instructions as understood whether right or wrong should clear up things pretty fast. I think it is worded confusing as well.
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Old 15th Dec 2020, 15:58
  #29 (permalink)  
 
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"G-CD REPORT RIGHT HAND DOWNWIND 34 QNH 1012"

Is all that is required, the presumption is always that without a condition/routing being added you fly direct to the point cleared. The surface wind is instant and therefore is passed when the pilot reports "Final". The surface wind may of course be requested at an any time but will still also be passed on the pilot reporting final.

If there is any doubt the controller may transmit: "route direct downwind right hand runway 34, QNH 1012". Whenever a non standard instruction is being passed it is encouraged for the controller to give an explanation "if time permits".
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Old 15th Dec 2020, 19:31
  #30 (permalink)  
 
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With full ATC, I am not surprised to be told "Join and report left/right downwind/base". I do whatever they say. If unable to see other traffic, I ask ATC for their position. If told to orbit at some position I do so.
With a mix of IFR and VFR traffic, of varying speeds, this is efficient and safe.
Slowing down seems potentially dangerous to me.
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Old 15th Dec 2020, 20:04
  #31 (permalink)  
 
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Slowing down seems potentially dangerous to me.
If your catching up with the aircraft ahead of you then slow down, this is basic airmanship. How else do you avoid grinding the tail plane off the aircraft ahead or tail chasing them down the final approach. Obviously it will be dangerous to slow down below the aircrafts minimum safe speed. If the circuit is controlled by ATC then the controller will ensure safe separation including sometimes an orbit. Without ATC: orbiting, extending downwind or flying a larger pattern is precarious and should not be encouraged. .
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Old 15th Dec 2020, 23:34
  #32 (permalink)  
 
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Well arent we a typical bunch of pilots, overcomplicating things with rules and nitpicking on their understanding etc?! 31 posts above, many of which ‘clarifying’ what was said and yet, somehow at loggerheads with each other!! An ATC instruction should not be subject to interpretation but should, instead, be unambiguous and clear. If not, then something is seriously wrong with the message. I have 14,000 hours - including 3000 of which teaching circuits in light aeroplanes - and I would have been confused by that instruction...if it needs this much interpretation, it aint right!!
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Old 16th Dec 2020, 01:45
  #33 (permalink)  
 
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Hey, Captain Smiffy; it is indeed a funny old game! I recall flying a Bulldog (XX549) from Woodvale to Blackpool back in the 80s. We were given a similar instruction - to report right base for a normally left-hand circuit. Now I was just a stude back then, but when my QFI (Uncle Rod) asked me what ATC meant, I managed to work it out! 🤔.

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Old 16th Dec 2020, 07:20
  #34 (permalink)  
 
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If I were told to join left downwind, I would join the left downwind. Just saying...
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Old 16th Dec 2020, 08:58
  #35 (permalink)  
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I wonder whether the OP, who is looking for advice and may well be inexperienced or a student, misheard what was said? This is not a criticism.... anybody at that stage could make a genuine mistake.
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Old 16th Dec 2020, 09:55
  #36 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Fl1ingfrog View Post
"G-CD REPORT RIGHT HAND DOWNWIND 34 QNH 1012"

Is all that is required, the presumption is always that without a condition/routing being added you fly direct to the point cleared. The surface wind is instant and therefore is passed when the pilot reports "Final". The surface wind may of course be requested at an any time but will still also be passed on the pilot reporting final.

If there is any doubt the controller may transmit: "route direct downwind right hand runway 34, QNH 1012". Whenever a non standard instruction is being passed it is encouraged for the controller to give an explanation "if time permits".
Talking for controllers outside the UK, and according to ICAO.

The correct phrase is "JOIN (position in circuit)....", nothing else, you could use "CLEARED DIRECT..." or "PROCEED DIRECT..." if you really want to stress it out though, or at least those are words out of normal phraseology. Don't assume anything, a "REPORT (position in circuit)..." is not a clearance per definition and does not relieve the pilot from entering and flying the circuit as properly should. Same goes the other way, I wouldn't assume a pilot enters and flies the circuit correct if I ask him to "REPORT BASE....", some do, some don't... and you learn by observing pilots.

Same with wind, ICAO dictates we give runway in use and wind prior to entering the circuit, it can be given via ATIS though. Most of us probably give it as part of the landing clearance as well, though the requirement is only for significant changes to a previous report.

And technically, the surface wind given by a TWR is not "instant", it's an mean wind direction and speed observation taken over 2 minutes with variations from this mean wind and speed within the last 10 minutes also reported, a gust has to last at least 3 seconds to be included. If the gust is more than 10 knots from the mean, you should be given a minimum and maximum speed instead of the mean speed. Same with variations... So no, you don't get an instant wind, unless you ask for it.

Generally we read the display, which should be set up according to the above.
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Old 16th Dec 2020, 10:37
  #37 (permalink)  
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The correct phrase is "JOIN (position in circuit)....", nothing else, you could use "CLEARED DIRECT..." or "PROCEED DIRECT..."
Though I know it varies region to region, I was trained to distinguish between an ATC instruction and an ATC clearance. A pilot is required to comply with an instruction, unless it is not possible, a clearance is not an instruction, though is usually to reply to the pilot's request, so compliance would be anticipated. So I would expect an instruction to JOIN the left downwind - not optional, infraction if not complied (unless I request a change, which is acknowledged). When I am CLEARED to land, that's not an instruction, I can overshoot if I need to. A variation of that I have received has been LAND TO HOLD SHORT (omitting the word CLEARED), so I expect to be required to actually land and stop prior to the specified point, or, say that I cannot comply (airplane type/winds/skill). My experience has been that a LAND TO HOLD SHORT instruction usually follows agreement that the pilot could comply, and is expedient to the pilot's benefit.

If what I have written above is in conflict with local/regional practice, of course do the local thing, but understand the nuance of an instruction compared to a clearance, in case it makes a difference, or favours your request....
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Old 16th Dec 2020, 11:04
  #38 (permalink)  
 
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Perhaps it's just me but joining left downwind makes it clear right hand circuits are in operation - even if I arrive inverted.
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Old 16th Dec 2020, 12:56
  #39 (permalink)  
 
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Ah good 'ole PPRuNers …. Supermattt threw a question in 2 days back and 37 posts later (without his reply to the responses) we are still arguing what he meant or what ATC/FISO should have said/done without any clear idea what the issue is.

Ain't this an object lesson at a number of levels in "If it ain't clear ….. ASK."

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Old 16th Dec 2020, 12:58
  #40 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Pilot DAR View Post
.......
Definately, there are always regional or national differences.

You as the pilot always has the final call in the operation of the aircraft, no matter if you get a clearance or an instruction (me as well, fly myself).

No worries, we expect the unexpected, as long as we don't have to take our feet of the desk.
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