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Convair 340 (C-131D) ZS-BRV crash Pretoria, South Africa

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Convair 340 (C-131D) ZS-BRV crash Pretoria, South Africa

Old 17th Jul 2018, 15:04
  #101 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by A Squared View Post
I haven't flown the Convairs, but I'd expect that it didn't have a blue line, but rather V speeds which were calculated based on takeoff weight, altitude and OAT. Blue-line is more light twin figure. It's possible though, that era was kind of a transitional period for aircraft performance theory.
So it would rather be V2 then, like with a jet. Anyways, the numbers would be interesting. They seem pretty fast passing the 172 in the 2nd video.
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Old 17th Jul 2018, 15:07
  #102 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by RatherBeFlying View Post
Post WWII most piston airliners were certified on 115/145.

On 100LL derates have to be applied. Engine out performance on 100LL will be less than on 115/145.
Not exactly true. The R2800 CB16 engine was certified on 100/130 for which 100LL is an approved alternate with no reduction in power. the CB17 was certified on 115/145 and would develop an additional 100 HP The Convair 340 may have had several different model engines installed, including the CB16 and CB17
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Old 17th Jul 2018, 15:09
  #103 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by A Squared View Post
As someone else noted earlier, it is quite possible for an engine to have a cylinder failure and still be producing a substantial amount of power.
That was, what I was thinking of. There is no yaw visible at all. Even if you react very quickly I would expect at least a little yaw at low speed and high power.
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Old 17th Jul 2018, 17:24
  #104 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by EDML View Post
There is no yaw visible at all. Even if you react very quickly I would expect at least a little yaw at low speed and high power.
Yes, power had to have been developed at least right after takeoff as the rudder is faired in the video as the aircraft passes overhead and away from the camera.
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Old 17th Jul 2018, 20:12
  #105 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by PJ2 View Post
Yes, power had to have been developed at least right after takeoff as the rudder is faired in the video as the aircraft passes overhead and away from the camera.
Correct. In the video that shows the T/O from behind the runway you can see that there is no rudder used after the A/C overflew the camera. Power seems to be evenly distributed.
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Old 17th Jul 2018, 23:28
  #106 (permalink)  
 
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There is now a video circulating taken from inside the aircraft, left side, with the rear of the engine in view. The video continues to and beyond impact.
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Old 17th Jul 2018, 23:31
  #107 (permalink)  
 
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The gear was obviously retracted very early and there is no rudder input or yaw. Perhaps a premature retraction caused the props to hit the ground, with consequential damage and power loss on BOTH engines?
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Old 17th Jul 2018, 23:32
  #108 (permalink)  
 
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Taken from inside.

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Old 17th Jul 2018, 23:42
  #109 (permalink)  
 
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Looks like the left engine finally failed while they where about to turn base or final (hard to tell as they are making a constant shallow turn.) Maybe that was all they could get turning over the running engine.

The left aileron looks strange. It seems to be deflected upwards a lot which neither makes sense in a right turn nor with a failing left engine. That might also be due to the quality of the video, though.

Last edited by EDML; 18th Jul 2018 at 00:06.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 00:04
  #110 (permalink)  
 
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While not wishing to speculate or pre-empt the investigation into this tragedy, the following personal experience of what can happen when an aircraft has been out of service for a protracted period may be worth relating.
In early 1993, I was contracted to ferry a Vickers Viscount from the USA to Zaire, This was an early 700 series that had been a VIP machine for some of its life, so had relatively low hours. It had been on a storage maintenance program in the Arizona desert. They had kept enough fuel in the tanks to carry out periodic engine runs. When we took delivery and did a short test flight I was pleasantly surprised at how all the systems except the autopilot seemed good to go.
We refuelled to full tanks to position from Tucson to Mena, where we would fit extra ferry tanks. About two hours into the flight the number one engine ran down and autofeathered, quickly followed by number two surging badly. A quick right hand turn and down we went towards Ardmore, noting all remaining fuel flowmeters were fluctuating.
At shutdown it was found all four fuel filters were badly clogged with rubber deposits.
Having been baking in the desert for so many years, the tops of the fuel bladders had badly perished. It was OK while a small amount of fuel remained in the tanks as it kept the lower sections moist enough not to leak. But once we went to full tanks the fuel sloshing around washed the rotten rubber into the system.
Could it be that this model Convair has rubber tanks, or rubber fuel lines? An engine running at high power suddenly leaned out due to fuel blockage would possibly backfire badly. This could cause a supercharger fire with no immediate loss of power, so no noticeable rudder input. Or a dramatic loss of power on both engines could explain the rudder position. Another possibility is a rotten or burst fuel line could have caused the fire, and the fire could have damaged the aileron circuit.

Last edited by Mach E Avelli; 19th Jul 2018 at 00:46. Reason: had a closer look at the video
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 00:41
  #111 (permalink)  
 
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The CB-3 and CB-16 were certified on 100/130, the CB-4 and CB 17 were certified on 108/135 brown gas.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 06:08
  #112 (permalink)  
 
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After following all the posts, seeing the extent of physical airframe damage and then watching that on board video which continues recording well after impact I was amazed at how well the passengers seemed to handle it.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 07:40
  #113 (permalink)  
 
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In looking at the internal footage a few notable observations are apparent

1, sooting on the panel junction in front of the exhaust outlet, and 2 fire under the wing - which is definitely abnormal and extremely alarming.

It would be a presumption that a fire has broken out, at some stage, either between the engine power section firewall and nacelle firewall, or a mechanical failure has occurred with the engine power section(Cylinder or multiples of, or rotating elements) and an uncontrolled oil leak is igniting on the exhaust and exiting vial the cowl flaps - which there would be no fire suppressant for(reserved for the Accessories section - oil and Fuel services etc).

In the departure video there is clear flaming in the exit area of the augmenter, which indicated something mechanical is amiss in there, the popping of the engine, smoke and strobe effect of the video indicates RPM changes occurring, and waiting for the Governer to assert itself - rpm recovery. Im going to assume the later - if you have a fire in the accessory section, fire alarms would sound, the engine(if determined is overheating/or on fire) would be secured and extinguishers used - Securing of would cut fuel and oil supplies and stop pumps for doing just that - The propwould also be feathered and stopping rotation.

A failure in the Power section may produce a fire that cant be seen, and if still producing power may lead you to continue until safe to secure. As for landing in a paddock - there are two pilots who will know the events relating to those decisions. Mine is but speculation, I am willing to speculate that they may have been made aware of an external fire late in to the flight and decided being on the ground in a controlled fashion was a better outcome. than pushing on to the runway.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 07:44
  #114 (permalink)  
 
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Ordinarily I would have thought that this crash was unsurvivable, looking at the pictures. I am inclined to agree with an earlier post that this craft was "crash landed" rather than "crashed", that is it was under control. Another reason for the high survival rate is the incredible strength of these old birds. I sure would not have liked to see a plastic fantastic composite aircraft after an arrival like this.

The pax, to the best of my knowledge were aviation people or the family of aviation people so much more likely to stay calm under the circumstances.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 09:42
  #115 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by EDML View Post
Looks like the left engine finally failed while they where about to turn base or final (hard to tell as they are making a constant shallow turn.) Maybe that was all they could get turning over the running engine.

The left aileron looks strange. It seems to be deflected upwards a lot which neither makes sense in a right turn nor with a failing left engine. That might also be due to the quality of the video, though.
I suspect the P.F. had a bootful of right rudder. Which would be consistent with power loss on the port engine. How much aileron needed to control the aircraft laterally, hence crossed controls is anyones guess. I also suspect the prop was not feathered for whatever reason, at or just before impact looking at the rotating prop in the clip.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 10:51
  #116 (permalink)  
 
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What an awful video to watch.
Based on the pilots previous experience, I can only speculate they were not convinced the aircraft would fly on one engine.
They kept that crook engine running for as long as possible. I would probably have done the same. At least they flew that aircraft to the crash site.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 11:23
  #117 (permalink)  
 
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The upward aileron puzzles me, it was not in T/O or shortly after. It looks like it is jammed full upward. It could indicate they could not crank the plane in a right turn to join final. To me it looks like the nr1 continued delivering power. The last sec before impact You hear the engine(s) roaring up.
If the jammed aileron proves to be the scenario, they have met a miserable set of emergencies. For the sake of the investigation it would be nice that they could remember a few things but for the sake of their mind it would be good if all after T/O is erased. So they will not end up waking up now and then from a nightmarish dream the rest of their life.
I wish them a good recovery.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 11:54
  #118 (permalink)  
 
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Theres a surge/power change at 43-44 seconds as well. It actually sounds like a reduction or miss then returns quickly thereafter.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 13:33
  #119 (permalink)  
 
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The upward aileron could have been a momentary turn of the control wheel taken by entire coincidence at that split second the camera shutter operated. I guess the question is why the prop was not immediately feathered but allowed to run during the entire attempted circuit - particularly as a fire in that engine was noticeable to the passengers. No doubt there will be a logical explanation to be revealed during the formal investigation.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 16:16
  #120 (permalink)  
 
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Very impressive Passengers, perhaps engineers, no simpering or calling for Mama. Afrikaners :-)

Hate to suggest they may have shut the wrong engine down, brief I make when flying with an engineer.. donít shut anything down without explicit instructions. Thrash it if necessary, preservation off the menu

letís hope itís not the case
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