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The B737 Landing Roll - F/O handling and Captain Hovering..

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The B737 Landing Roll - F/O handling and Captain Hovering..

Old 10th Jul 2007, 13:57
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The B737 Landing Roll - F/O handling and Captain Hovering..

Discussion came up in pub during recent overnight. When the first officer conducts the landing in a B737, at what stage of the landing roll should he assume or expect, that the captain will take over control?
Experience reveals some captains will call assuming control at 80 knots - some at 60 knots as the reversers are being stowed - others somewhere under 100 knots depending on various outside factors such as proximity to high speed turn offs. Some wait until reversers are stowed - others take over control with full reverse still applied and autobrake still operating.
With such a wide variance of captain techniques - some even depending on individual captain whims or "twitch factor" it must be difficult for the first officer as handling pilot to judge when the captain will assume control.
In terms of situational awareness - if that term is valid here - I would have thought it would be wise for the captain to brief the first officer prior to touch down, of his (the captain's) intentions as to exactly at what point in the landing roll he would assume control. At least then the first officer would be prepared - rather than having to guess the magic moment., especially if he is already in the process of applying manual braking. Comments?
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Old 10th Jul 2007, 14:04
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Always maintain at least idle reverse since Capt may (in extremis) want more reverse when he takes control.

Seems fairly simple to me - FO maintains control until such time as Capt announces "I have control".
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Old 10th Jul 2007, 15:14
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Well, it depends.
In my small company, the First Officer will announce....60 knots, your control...usually with reverse just canceled..

Or, a few will wait for my call of sixty, and promptly say...you got 'em, Captain.

Either way is fine by me.
Now, I would be the first to say that these folks are very experienced, so it helps.
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Old 10th Jul 2007, 15:23
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some at 60 knots as the reversers are being stowed
- first, to correct a common error - they do not NEED to be 'stowed' at 60kts and reverse starts to reduce to idle at 60kts. They should be 'stowed' when at taxy speed.

Second, as FFB says - what is the issue? How does the Captain KNOW in advance whether the F/O will
a) Touch down correctly and in the right place
b) apply correct braking for the planned OR NECESSARY exit
c) maintain normal control/centreline

and whether something is going to change that will require input?

Yes - please leave the reversers 'as they are' at hand over. 9 times out of 10 they are stowed at handover and I have to redeploy them.

In my time I got used to a variety of take-overs from just after landing to rudder-fine steering off at a high-speed. Almost all unbriefed. I coped.
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Old 10th Jul 2007, 16:34
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I as a FO would like to have the control as long as possible - for training and experience gaining.
Some Cpts take over almost the second we touch down and thats not appreciated.
Did a manual braking in a 737 classic the other day... Almost broke my nose due to the not so smooth braking in that old plane... But I learned something and had a big laugh with the cpt.
Normally we only fly the NG so I am not so used to the classic. And since this cpt let me do manual braking I also had a learning day
So... let the FO do as much as possible - please
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Old 10th Jul 2007, 16:40
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As an FO, may I request that you Captains, when taking it over, actually say "I have the controls" or "My airplane" rather than the more ambiguous (to me, anyway) "I'm on the brakes with you"? Consider that we are used to from the earliest days of PPL training for the CFI to say "I have the controls", so something similar and definitive would be appreciated.
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Old 10th Jul 2007, 18:15
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If the FO has tiller steering, why would the captain need to take control at all during the landing roll? Otherwise play it by ear, assume nothing and if you hear nothing continue flying the plane. If and when you can't make a turn, then ask if the skipper would like control
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Old 10th Jul 2007, 18:39
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737

As an 'old' hand (7000on type and 65+) it is usual for the LHS occupant to take control at about 60kt - as 99% of 737's only have a tillier on the left!!!!! db16 However it is essential to say 'I have control'
 
Old 10th Jul 2007, 20:40
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IF the First officer has good solid experience on type, they can normally be relied upon to exercise good judgement.
Give the guys (and gals) a break...they will be Commanders one day and will certainly appreciate the experience.

Leave 'em alone to do their job...the Captain who 'hovers' over the controls needs to retire....pronto.

And, this coming from a Commander with 30+ years of command experience in heavy/wide body jet transport aircraft.

Surprise...surprise.
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Old 10th Jul 2007, 23:29
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I'd have thought its pretty obvious that you allow the F/O to get on with it within the usual constraints and he can expect you to take control at the point specified in those same SOPs.

If he makes a hash of it for whatever reason then you can intervene in the normal fashion and if necessary by taking control earlier than normal.

The main reason I tend to end up taking control earlier than normal is to prevent the aircraft getting caught slow speed between two high speed exits with another aircraft 3 miles in trail.
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Old 11th Jul 2007, 00:51
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What is your company's SOP?

What is your company's SOP?

PantLoad
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Old 11th Jul 2007, 03:44
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at taxi speed unless he/she wants to vacate at a high speed twy. In that case I am usually informed of that and even start turning with rudder...steering could lead to overcontrolling at speeds greater than 40-60 kt. I normally give it to the capt with reversers stowed...
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Old 11th Jul 2007, 10:22
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give or take

SW: I normally give it to the capt with reversers stowed...

Hmm lucky guy... normally the cpt TAKES control in my company.
If I want it longer I usually have to ask the cpt not to take control untill taxi speed, which by the way is SOP.
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Old 11th Jul 2007, 11:45
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Have to agree with some of the comments here. As a new FO it really annoys me when the capt takes control above 100kts. I want the practice of manual braking and judging how much braking to apply for an exit.
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Old 11th Jul 2007, 11:55
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Why not just take a couple of seconds during your brief and mention at what stage, providing all goes to plan, control will be passed from right to left. Then providing nothing out of the ordinary comes along all concerned know whats going on.
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Old 11th Jul 2007, 12:04
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Your company Operations Manual should state clearly at what point the Captain takes control during the landing roll, and indeed what positions the thrust reversers are left in. The Captain may deem a deviation from SOP as necessary depending on the runway surface conditions / weather / First Officer ability. It is however only polite and in the spirit of good CRM to discuss this prior to the approach. Random practice in assuming control at the whim of the Captain is demoralising for the FO and does not promote discipline nor skill-building.
I agree with Cpt Drag. Any doubt over what point the Captain takes control can be discussed during your interactive approach and landing brief which may make him think twice before wading in and creating an unhappy atmosphere.

"If the FO has tiller steering, why would the captain need to take control at all during the landing roll? Otherwise play it by ear, assume nothing and if you hear nothing continue flying the plane. If and when you can't make a turn, then ask if the skipper would like control"

......This may or may not be your company's SOP if you have dual tillers but for heaven's sake check your manual for conflict before you go applying your own initiative-based procedures.
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Old 11th Jul 2007, 13:13
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fireflybob:
FO maintains control until such time as Capt announces "I have control".
Don't the various SOP's have to be predicated on that fundamental concept?

Seems to me that "giving" control could be asking for trouble unless it's a three part deal -- e.g., "Please take the airplane... I have the airplane... your airplane".

(Recall the KJFK L-1011 crash where the transfer of control was initiated by the FO....?)
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Old 11th Jul 2007, 14:34
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Yes - please leave the reversers 'as they are' at hand over. 9 times out of 10 they are stowed at handover and I have to redeploy them
Firstly, judging by the variety of opinions expressed in the preceding replies, the original correspondent A37575 has hit the nail on the head in his questioning of captain's habits in terms of when they prefer to take over control during a landing roll. Whether or not this detail should be published in company SOP is a matter of opinion. There is surely a limit on how much needs to be published in the Great Book as against what is generally accepted by competent well trained crews as commonsense airmanship.

Secondly, in reply to the boxed quote above, some may consider it's is a bit damned late to be redeploying the reversers after they have already been stowed or close to be stowed. It is well known that below 80 knots the effect of reverse is greatly diminished as a retardation device unless on a very slippery surface.
Couple that with reverse idle the time to attain full reverse takes at least 7 seconds, when at the same time wheel braking on a dry runway is very efficient. Therefore the use of reverse idle as a "standby" in case more decelleration is suddenly required for whatever reason - is just fooling yourself.
Operational margins published in the FCTM indicate a rejected take off using manual brakes and full reverse on a dry surface the amount of length saved is around 180 feet compared with no reverse. With RTO the saved distance is probably even less. That distance reflects the efficiency of the braking system and spoilers because by the time reverse thrust levels are high enough to significantly reduce the landing run, the brakes have done their job and cut speeds back down to where reverse is least effective. Using idle reverse as a perceived precaution in case sudden high reverse is needed late in the landing run, is simply a contradiction of facts. Reverse is most effective if applied at high speed and quite ineffective at low speed.
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Old 11th Jul 2007, 15:02
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Well, Centaurus, unusually for you 'a miss is as good as a mile'. Using reverse IDLE down to normal taxy speed has a significant effect on the amount of braking required and therefore on both brake life and temperatures. If you are familiar with reverse thrust, even on high bypass engines, you will be aware of this retardation as there is a noticable forward 'kick' when the reversers are stowed from idle. Therefore I follow both company and Boeing SOPs and leave them deployed down to taxy speed - where it assists with my required speed reduction. Where it don't I stows 'em.

A far as 'taking control' goes, I have found over the years of command that few F/Os judge braking for a planned (or required) exit correctly, and as someone has said above it is often necessary to take over 'early') to avoid either a hairy (very) high-speed exit or a funeral march to the next with someone up me chuff. I suspect it is yet another of those points glossed over or ignored during the rush to line train, and that is where 90% of the problems arise, as they will NOT find consistency on the line. I also suspect that the incorrect 'stowage' of reverse feeds through from line training too.

I would suggest that the random scatter of take-over should be viewed by F/Os as
what is generally accepted by competent well trained crews as commonsense airmanship
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Old 12th Jul 2007, 14:34
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Using reverse IDLE down to normal taxy speed has a significant effect on the amount of braking required and therefore on both brake life and temperatures
BOAC. Point well taken. I misinterpreted your meaning when you mentioned redeployment of the thrust reversers. I thought you meant that by redeployng you were intending to apply full reverse again. Of course you are correct for the reasons offered when advising use of idle reverse until at taxi speed.
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