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Landing Advice

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Old 11-16-2005, 05:49 PM
  #1  
poppy2
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Default Landing Advice

There was recently a thread here titled "Taking Off Advice". It had some excellent advice by many people who have mastered the hobby. It has been viewed by about a 1000 people and about 50 responded. As a novice, I know that I sure learned much from it. After having read it , I can take off where as before I couldn't.

How about doing the same thing with landing? For those of you that can land a plane with ease, what tips can you give a novice on landing his trainer? Thank you in advance.

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Old 11-16-2005, 06:19 PM
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2slow2matter
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Default RE: Landing Advice

When I was first flying, I got some instruction, but then one day I was just out flying with a buddy. After about 10 or so minutes, I told him "you know eventually you're going to have to help me land this thing." He laughed. but, what he had me to do helped me tremendously. We walked out to the edge of the runway, and I brought the plane toward the runway. What he said that helped so much was to move the aileron stick toward the low wing. So, in other words, everytime a wing started to dip, to move the aileron stick that direction until it leveled back up. That was probably the biggest thing I had to overcome--learning how to correct the roll during landing--which is when the controls are always reversed. And, when you are only feet off the ground, you certainly don't want to roll it the wrong way!

I don't know if it's adviseable for a newbie to fly a plane toward them while standing at the edge of the runway, but it worked for me. Soon after that, I was backing farther and farther away from the runway until I was landing it from behind the fence.

As for now, most of my landings are greased. I have one plane that I fight ground looping on, but other than that, it's cake. Some advice I can give is:

1) don't get too slow--you'll stall
2) keep the nose down until you are just 10 or so feet off the runway, then level it out and let it sink. Once you are a foot off the ground, flair the nose to bleed off the residual energy. Some planes handle this differnent than others, so be careful!
3) Always aim for a spot just off the end of the runway--at first, you will always overshoot your landing spot because of depth perception. If you aim for a spot just beyond the threshold, then you will most likely set it down somewhere just past the threshold.
4) When you are preparing for landing, cut your throttle to about half on the downwind leg--make sure your downwind leg is at least a few hundred feet out from the runway--so you have a decent cross-wind leg.
5) When you turn onto the crosswind (base) leg, cut your throttle a little more--to about 25%. This isn't always an exact, as every plane is different. I have planes that if I cut them to 25%, they might fall out of the sky, so be careful of this, but on your trainer it should be a good starting point.
6) Turn onto final when you are lined up with the runway, and reduce the throttle to just a couple of clicks above idle. You should turn onto your final leg at a distance of around 200 feet or so beyond the threshold. If it is a strong headwind, this distance can be greatly reduced. If there is no wind, you might want to increase it somewhat. You should be at around 150 or so feet in altitude when you start your final approach.
7) On the final leg, you should point the nose of the plane down, and let it descend to the landing spot. If you're going to be way short, give a little throttle and then back off the throttle. Use your rudder at this point to hold course. Use the ailerons to null roll only!
8) When you get about a foot off the runway, drop the throttle all the way to idle, and flair the nose by applying some up elevator. This will decrease airspeed, causing the wing to lose lift, and the plane should settle to the ground.
9) If you are going to be long, or not lined up, GO AROUND! unless you are out of fuel, there is always another chance--use it!

Some trainers won't land wtih any throttle at all. I say keep a few clicks just because it's good habbit. If your plane won't slow down enough to land, then idle it all the way down.

There are better ways to explain what I have said, and others will chime in. Take some of mine, and some of others, and put together the way YOU feel most comfortable with. Remember, it takes practice! And, there will be boo boos, just keep on trucking!
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Old 11-16-2005, 06:22 PM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

Poppy,

Before getting into techniques, hare are some observations, things you want to do and ideas.

1. Make sure your plane sits level on the ground. 99% of the trainers have a wire gear that slowly spreads out as you practice landings. This causes the nose to sit high. Great for take offs, but if you touch the nose gear first, you are guaranteed a bounce. You need to pull the main gear together so the plane sits level. I have my students solder a piece of 1/16 wire between the gear legs so it can't spread.

2. Don't make a long pattern. Guys start having trouble and they lengthen their pattern and final approach out so they have more time. Wrong. When you land like this, most of the time you are looking head-on at the plane. This is the worst perspective to see and judge the plane's attitude. Plan to touchdown in front of yourself of past yourself. When you are past, as long as you're not too far, everything is directional and landing will be easier to judge.

3. Don't angle toward the runway. It is better to overshoot the runway a little than it is to turn too tightly and then angle in to the runway. Look at it this way, when you angle in, the plane is head on again, hard to judge. Then you need to make a correction turn down the runway when you are at low altitude. Better to fly to overshoot slightly and tighten the turn toward the end. Even if you do have to angle out a little, you are still looking at the side of the plane.

4. If you see the bottom of the plane on final, you have the nose too high. You ought to be in a descent. Keep the nose down slightly aimed for the runway until you flare.

5. Don't land out of every approach. Make an approach and, if it's a good one, land. If the approach is messed up, there is a 99% chance you'll have a bad landing so go around and do another approach. At first, you'll probably be making 1 landing for every 4 or 5 approaches.

6. If you get in a total panic and you are by yourself, throttle to idle, aim it out into the grass (hopefully you have some), keep the fuselage level and let it land itself. You'll walk away from it.

7. I like to have students do lots of low approaches before landing. If they know there is no pressure to land "this time," they seem to fly better. Do the low approach, add a few clicks of power and practice steering at slow speed down the runway before nailing it to climb out.

8. I have my students put a big wide stripe down the fuselage side if there isn't one. Something they can see on final approach. I use a head high, belt high method. When the plane is head high, about 5-6 feet, level the stripe parallel to the ground. Work the elevator to keep it level. The plane will float, then start to descend again. When it gets to belt high, 2-3 feet, use a little elevator to put the stripe slightly upwards. Very slightly, you don't want to climb. Then FREEZE. The plane will land. Trainers are supposed to land. All you'll do at the early stage is mess it up.
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Old 11-16-2005, 06:30 PM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

I guess that landing is something that WILL happen, like the old saying "Takeoffs are optional BUT Landings are mandatory. I learned a lot of what I know from constant practice on a simulator. When I did Solo, my Instructor made me fly what seemed like 10 approaches and told me that if you fly the approach right, landings are a piece of cake. He is right and every time I fly I usually shoot at least 3 approaches. An old timer I met a while back, told me to practice a procedure which will help in case of a dead stick... First fly the normal pattern at a safe altitude, and when the airplane is across from you on down wind, cut the throttle to idle, shoot the approach, land and see how close you can you can get the airplane to your flight station. He told me that when you can do it every time then you have earned your wings. I practice this every time I fly now and the comfort level really calms the shakes.
-Tom
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Old 11-16-2005, 07:00 PM
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poppy2
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Default RE: Landing Advice

2slow2matter-

WOW. What a post. That is excellent information. I think one of my problems has been #6. We have to come over trees on the final and I have found myself coming in at an angle to the runway. The other day I went out to the runway and looked at the trees that were straight down the center of the runway, located them and when coming in for the final came over them and it sure did make it much easier. Also #9. If you don't like what you see, go around. Don't know why I thought I had to land regardless what things looked like. Also #8. I am working on that flair at about one foot. Some are better then others. #7, you say to use the rudder to hold course and the ailerons to null roll. That I need to work on. I was total ignorant of that information. I use the ailerons to do both. What a post. I want to give you a 10 10 10 for that help. Thanks a lot,


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Old 11-16-2005, 07:45 PM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

I was told by an old timer that as the plane loses airspeed the LAST function it loses is rudder. When making your approach use ailerons to keep your wings level (Stick to the low wing if it is comming toward you) and rudder to make directional corrections.
If you are learning to fly and learning to land is part of that process, than it stands to reason that you will be making a few not so pretty landings. GET RID OF THE NOSE WHEEL AND MAKE IT A TAIL DRAGGER. Rough landings with a nose wheels cause linkedge problems, nose wheel problems, fire wall problems, noseovers that break props and all of these require maintainene that interferes with flying. I would suggest getting an oversized pair of wheels to make your ground handeling a little easier and practice landings untill they are second nature.
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Old 11-16-2005, 07:48 PM
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poppy2
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Default RE: Landing Advice

Ed Moorman-

Thanks for your reply. I didn't think that I would get this response this fast. There is so much good information coming in. I have a Hobbieco Superstar 40. The wire wheels are a pain in the neck. They flop down after a few landings and I have solved that problem. I came down 3 inches from the fuse on each wire and put a wheel collar on at that point. I ran some strong wire across the two and pulled them up to were the plane was level. It has worked well so far. It also makes take off much better with the plane level.

I do tend to make the approach long but I don't have a lot of problems trying to keep the wings level when it is coming toward me. One of the few things that seems easy for me. Wing tips, move the stick in that direction to correct. Coming in at an angle has been a problem but I have solved that. Read my second post here.

I do have to practice low approaches and go arounds. No pressure there and much to learn.

I like your head high and belt high. What I have shoot for in the past is to be about 5 feet above the end of the runway, level out at about 2 to 3 feet and flair at 1 foot. Then don't forget to steer the plane after touch down. Maybe I am a little off with my levels here,

Thanks for great information.


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Old 11-16-2005, 11:13 PM
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2slow2matter
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Default RE: Landing Advice

The key is that every plane will react differently at landing speeds. Some of my planes would stall and die if I were to try and level them out at 10 feet. I have to keep them flying all the way to flair--inches off the deck. However, trainers are very forgiving, and you can get away with pretty much anything short of completely stalling it.
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Old 11-16-2005, 11:45 PM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

I think the biggest mistake beginners make is too much elevator control, not enough throttle control.

This means, if your short, add throttle, not up elevator. If you are long, either abort , or chop the throttle and slip or slide (not recommended for beginners!).

Next time you are in an airliner, listen to the engines as the pilot flies the final approach. It's all in the throttles. Our airplanes are no different.

Also, practice flying by attitude, not aim. Look at the attitude of the airplane: nose high , level or low? Banked or level? If you can maintain a steady attitude, you can eventually fly a steady decent without the wild corrections. Then you can work on putting it where you want.

As they say: IMHO.
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Old 11-17-2005, 12:10 AM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

Lots of good material here, gents. Four things stand out in my mind, repeated for emphasis:

1. Use "Stick toward the low wing" when flying toward yourself. Made a world of difference for
me.

2. Learn to use the rudder. It will work when all else is lost. With practice, you can do touch and
gos using only rudder and throttle. Dropping an aileron sharply at low speed increases the
camber of that half of the wing, increasing angle of attack and causing a tip stall. Ka-bang.

3. Try this a couple of times before you laugh: look at the end of the runway from where you
normally stand to fly. There are left hand and right hand corners to the runway,OK? When you
shoot your landing approach, delay turning final until it looks like your plane is going to pass
over the left hand corner of the runway. Then roll level. You'll be centered on the runway
every time.

4. Last and most important-someone mentioned it above-is the airplane Golden Rule: Throttle
controls Altitude. Elevator controls Speed.
If you want an airplane to climb, you
have to add power. If you try to climb by pulling back on the stick, you'll get a brief zoom
climb, but eventually the plane settles down at a new, slower speed in level flight.

You can test this easily. Trim your plane out for level flight at 1/2 or 2/3 throttle. Increase to
full throttle and watch. It will climb. Do it again, but pull the throttle to high idle. The nose will
drop. starting a dive. Return the throttle to its original setting. The plane will resume level
flight. Watch closely-the speed will stay the same in all three attitudes. It will go up or down,
but the speed remains constant. Throttle controls altitude.

Do the same thing again, only with elevator. In level flight, roll in 3-4 clicks of back trim. The
nose will go up, but wait, the plane will slow down and resume level flight at a new, slower
speed.
Now trim it nose down 3-4 clicks. At the same throttle setting, it will level off or dive, but at the
same speed as before. Elevator controls speed.

What does this have to do with landing? On the approach, if you are low or short, add power. If
you are long, reduce power. Once you have the plane in a nice flat glide, don't mess with the
elevator again until you are ready to flare. Control your height and distance with power. The
flare is done with the elevator and is done to bleed off the last drop of speed, so you touch
down right at the stall speed of the plane.

It's hard to expain this decently in a few lines. But it is true of all airplanes from your trainer
to the space shuttle. Same rules apply. Oh, another thought. When I am rusty or flying an
unfamiliar plane, I go up a couple of mistakes high and slow-fly a little, to get a feel for the
controls and the stall speed before trying a landing. Another good practice piece is to climb
fairly high-300-400 feet. Go to idle and land without touching the throttle again. A few of
those will make your approaches much more precise and make the landings better. It's good
practice to go out on a windy day and try to fly backwards, too, but that's another
story...Hope there is some help in all this.
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Old 11-17-2005, 12:17 AM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

I am by no means an expert, but I will share my experience and I hope it may be helpful. Nothing helped my landings like the modern simulators. They can give you a great measure of confidence without exacting the price of your plane. I am not only talking about our model airplane simulators. For example, I have flown Falcon 4.0 simulator for years along with Dave Brown's Flight Simulator and they have been tremendous training for landing one of the tuffiest landing models around, the Gee Bee. So here is what I have learned over the last 18 years of flying.

As was intimated above, the key to great landings is the approach. I have found that the key to great approaches is throttle control. What I mean is simply this. You enter your pattern at the desired height that will allow you to place the model on the correct glide-slope at final leg. The throttle allows you to adjust the rate of decent to the final leg. The throttle also adjust the the glide-slope, and not the elevator which is so often used. If the glide-path is to shallow, increase throttle. If the glide-path is to steep, decrease throttle. It is as if you are flying the plane on the prop. If you calculate that the plane will not make the end of the runway, you simply add enough throttle to power it to the runway, decrease throttle and flair it down.

Maybe simply was not the correct choice of words, as the landing does require discipline and much practice. Again the simulators are wonderful tools for this. I love flying the FA/18 Hornet to the deck of a carrier. They refer to this manuver as trapping. It is an apt description as you come into to the deck at approximately 135 knotts and go to full power just prior to the touch. During the whole process however, you are constantly working the throttle to maintain the proper glide-path.
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Old 11-17-2005, 12:43 AM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

You have gotten a lot of good advice, here. 2slow gave you a comprehensive reply, and I would identify 2 "keys" to emphasize. Step 6- turn to final: this is the single most important part of the landing pattern. Identify a landmark you can use to orient when/where to turn. The next key is to "let" the plane fly in on final; don't mess with it any more than is needed to keep it on course, and as you near touch down, the flair should look like just "holding the plane off the ground" while it lands itself. The first parts of the landing pattern are to get you to that turn to final at the right speed, altitude and position.

Now, the task for you is to go out there and shoot landings over and over untill they become boring. Or should I say, "perfectly" boring. Enjoy.
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Old 11-17-2005, 08:35 AM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

What a wealth of information here. It is going to take some time to go over all of this. One thing that I did the other day was to go out on the runway and look down the center and find the trees that lined up with the center runway. Then when I was going onto final came over these trees and found that I was in fact lined up. Made things much easier. This is what kdheath's post is saying about the the right corner and left corner of the runway. I was in the past coming in on final lined up with the right corner and having to make corrections. I believe that the next time I go out to the field and come in on final over the trees I have lined up with the center of the runway, I will find that it also will be lined up with the left corner of the runway.

So many things to comment on here that I will leave this for now. I deeply appreciate all the feed back.


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Old 11-17-2005, 12:15 PM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

One of the things Ive seen a lot of people do is they will make their base leg almost nonexistant. They do a full 180 from downwind to final. IMO the base leg is the best time to be see what the plane is doing compared to what you want it to do. This also makes it easier to make sure you are lined up with the center of the runway. Most students at our field seem to turn early and end up out over the weeds, then rather than focusing on landing they are focusing on getting the plane on the field. What I do is have a spot picked out at each end of the field to turn at, theres a house in the distance at one end, and a big bush at the other end. If you turn final lined up with one of those you will be over the center every time. Also on most trainers students seem to "smash the nose gear". My friend and I did this numerous times on the Kadet Senior, which involved the isntructor (my Dad ) getting agravated because now he had to bend the gear back. The best landings come from 2 things, 1 A good pattern, not just a chop the throttle and dive for final approach, and a good flair. When you are close to the ground just hold the nose gear off to get the plane to touch on the main gear first. It doesn't have to be drastic just enough to keep the nose gear from hitting first.
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Old 11-17-2005, 06:58 PM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

Only one issue with using one landmark to set up your approaches. What happens when you visit your buddy at another field? That's where the corner marker is your friend. Every runway has one.

Something I failed to add yesterday is to practice LH and RH patterns. I'm amazed at experienced flyers who "buttonhook" their RH approaches.
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Old 11-17-2005, 08:42 PM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

As I think about this more, I think greasing it down the centre of the runway is the least important skill of all.

It is far more important to learn first principles: recognizing attitude, and knowing how an airplane flies for given attitude.

For instance, a good descent involves a decrease in power, and an increase in angle of attack. The craft slows, and you use throttle to adjust descent. Now, throw in the aileron to the low wing advice, and you have an adverse-yaw stall waiting to happen. Someone who wants to keep his airplane will never do anything but a co-ordinated turn in this circumstance: rudder and aileron.

I think a beginner should worry about attitude, not aim. Watch the descent, learn how the airplane reacts. Also, let it settle: if you have not changed the inputs, any hop or roll is probably just transient ground turbulence, and not a reason to correct. Worry about the steady descent.

Only after you understand attitude is it easy to aim.

Sometimes, we're so busy flying, we forget to watch. IMHO!



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Old 11-17-2005, 09:31 PM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

There are lot of way to get better at landings, main thing is practice. Practice your aproches, the setup is always the key

to me two thing you have to master is low speed handling and cross coupling.

practicing low speed handling is straight forward. Do a couple flybys at 1/2 throttle. each succesion get a little slower. AS you get slower you'll notice you'll need to hold up elevator to keep the model at a constant altitude. Once you find the speed were 1/4 up elevator will keep the model level, at that point try adjusting you altitude with the throttle. do this at least 75 feet up. practice this though 4-5 tanks. You'll notice your landings will get a little easyier to predict.

now cross coupling is part of mastering the rudder. Being able to do this is essential in cross wind situations and really comes in handy on scale warbird that love to tip stall. as mentiond before use the ailerons by moving the stick to the low wing to keep the wings level. level. Now at the same time you can move the rudder the opsite direction and steer the model the way you want to go.

after you've got the concept of controling altitude and sinkrate with the throttle. try flying level at slow speeds and making turns with the rudder using the ailerons to keep the wings level sorta slidding the model around. this isn't good flying technique but your training yourself how to crosscouple. The next step after that is exagerating the aileron control to 5 degrees over level and use rudder hold your course. your model will slow down and fall, this is side slipping. these are pretty tough manuvers to do well. once you can do these, wind becomes a none issue, in fact becomes a friend, and dead stick landings are a non issue
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Old 11-18-2005, 01:51 AM
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Default RE: Landing Advice

Well, snitch and others said it before.
But I'll say it again in my words.
Control attitude / speed with elevator.
Control sink with throttle.
It is really good practice to simply practice slow flight.

We really can't discuss landing without mentioning crosswinds. But I couldn't possibly write a coherent explanation as it is late and I am lazy. There were good articles recently in the mags explaining crosswind landings. The two techniques are called "crabbing" and "slipping". "Slipping" is a bit more advanced and generally too much for a newbie. Crabbing is the method most people start out with and is fairly effective. The magazine article explained crabbing. Essentially, you just keep the wings level. The plane's path is kept aligned with the runway , but the plane itself is turned several degrees in the direction of the crosswind. Its very natural, its easy. It works just fine on trike airplanes.

Back to the issue of throttle control. I see too many people try to land thier planes by simply cutting power and trying to glide their plane to the runway. That is not the proper way to land. It is not going to give you the lowest landing speed. It will not give you the most control.

A plane will fly at the speed it has been trimmed for. You slow an airplane with elevator trim. You control climb and sink with throttle. When an airplane is trimmed for landing, there is very little , if any pitch inputs until the flair. Most of the pilots work on approach is related to keeping the plane aligned with the runway and adjusting the rate of descent with power. If the proper power setting is achieved, and there isn't a cross wind, the pilot may not need to make any inputs until the flair. I have demonstrated this by holding my hands in the air as my plane approached. Once you understand and become familiar with this technique, you will find that landing an airplane is fairly simple. And you will be able to touch down precisely where you like.
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Old 11-18-2005, 09:30 AM
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poppy2
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Default RE: Landing Advice

This is one one the most interesting threads I have read. As a novice, at this point, I am getting the plane up, keeping it up but now seem to have most of my trouble landing, although, I do get it down. This thread is going to definitely help. I want to read these posts, re-read them, and then read them again. In my mind I want to know just what I need to do, mental rehearse landing that plane over and over when I can't get to the field. When I actually do fly it, it might seem like second nature.

I am really interested in the use of rudder since all I have ever done in regard with that control is to steer the plane on the ground since rudder and wheel are connected. The information on rudder is all new to me.

I have a lot of questions but will keep this post short. One question that has entered my mind from time to time and I am not really clear on the answer is this. I understand that altitude is controlled by throttle. At what speed do you trim out the plane? 1/2 throttle, 3/4 throttle, full throttle? It would seem to me that if the plane was trimmed out at full throttle, at that setting there is no more power to increase altitude if you needed to. Hope I have explained this clearly. Maybe I am making things more difficult than they need to be in regard to trimming the plane. Thanks again for all this excellent information.


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Old 11-18-2005, 09:31 AM
  #20  
AlabamaRaptor
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Default RE: Landing Advice

Something I was taught and it worked perfectly is that if your landing strip edge is about 5ft. in front of you then you should turn to you final approach with the plane 1/2 through the turn even with your shoulder if you're looking straight in front of you and the plane is coming on final approach to either your right or left. This will align the plane to the runway perfectly.
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Old 11-18-2005, 09:42 AM
  #21  
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Default RE: Landing Advice

One thing that I tell my students that hasn't been implied here but not clearly mentioned is how to get a "greaser" landing. The above posts talk about the flair and holding it off, and it will land by itself. One secret for consistant greaser landings is once you are in the flair about a foot off the ground, stop looking at the airplane! Look at the wheels and fly them into the grass or runway. If you are focused on the fuselage, the wheels may hit the ground too soon, or they may be too high when the wing stalls in either case you get a bounce.

Just like seeing the bat hit the ball in baseball "keeping your eye on the ball" I still get a good feeling about watching the wheels just skim the tops of the grass blades on landings, makes a greaser every time.

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Old 11-18-2005, 11:04 AM
  #22  
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Default RE: Landing Advice

The advice about moving the aileron stick towards the low wing while the plane is coming towards you, while absolutely true, requires an additional thinking process. It's not automatic, and having to be conscious of what to do slows the reaction time. The easiest thing to do to learn how to move the sticks when the plane is coming towards you is to point the transmitter in the same direction that the model is flying. This may mean looking over your shoulder. You'll find that you don't have to think about which way to move the sticks, it will be natural.

As you fly more, you'll find that you won't have to actually point the transmitter, but be able to plant your feet and fly the model where you want it to go. For landings, I always tried to set it up so that it would come down a glidepath that looked like it would put the plane right through my knees.

As has been said a few times, you cannot make a good landing if your approach is not stable. Airline pilots know about this, and usually have the aircraft in a "stabilized approach" a few miles out from the end of the runway. This guarantees trouble-free landings (well, almost guarantees).
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Old 11-18-2005, 05:22 PM
  #23  
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Default RE: Landing Advice

at what throttle setting you set your plane up at as far as trim depend on the plane and your flying styal. Set it up for whatever throttle setting you most often use on that model. For my trainer I set it up for 3/4, my scale stuff 1/2 throttle as well as 3-d and fun fly planes and my sport and pylon racers full throttle. trimming for landing is only pratical if that all your going to practice for the day, otherwise you'll be re trimming the model several times a day. trim the model then leave the trims alone
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Old 11-19-2005, 01:18 AM
  #24  
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Default RE: Landing Advice

I don't agree that you should never touch the trims.

You should permanently trim a model to fly level at your preferred cruising speed, be it full out or half throttle, when the trim tab is neutral. Ideally, the stab incidence should be such that at cruise, there is no deflection in the elevator.

Now, if you throttle up from this setting, the model will climb; if you throttle back, it will descend. This is because for a given angle of attack, more power will increase left, and vice versa. In level flight lift is exactly equal to weight. When you throttle up, lift is greater than weight, thus you climb. And so on.

So if your typical cruising speed is 3/4 throttle, and you advance to full throttle, you will have to add down trim to maintain level flight.

Similarly for landing: you should decrease the throttle, and click in a few notches of up elevator to increase the angle of attack. This slows the airplane, and prevents a dive. Just how much of each is a matter of experience, and is particular to the model and engine. Too much elevator, and the angle of attack is too great: you stall. Too little throttle, you don't descend: you plummet. But once you get it right, after a few seconds, the model will settle into a constant glide. Once you can do this, landing is a whole lot easier, because then its just steering, and you can follow whatever rule of thumb you like.

When you are just off the deck, you add elevator slowly, and flare, as has been stated. The elevator increases angle of attack, and further slows the aircraft. I have a friend who is a commercial pilot. He tells me that in full size airplanes, the object is to reach stall speed just as the wheels touch the ground. That way, the aircraft sticks, and cannot bounce. That can be a hard thing to do in a trainer, or with planes that have low wing loading. You can fly the whole field waiting for the speed to bleed off!














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Old 11-19-2005, 08:43 AM
  #25  
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Default RE: Landing Advice

Snitch-

Excellent information. Let me make sure I understand what I think you said.

Permanently trim the plane to fly level at your preferred speed. Now if I understand how this is done, you fly at 3/4 throttle and then adjust the elevator so you have level flight. Now the elevator might not be level with the horizontal stabilizer if I understand correctly. I am a little confused when you say at cruise, there is no deflection in the elevator. Hopefully you can clear this up for me, because I follow every thing else you said in your post. Please be patient. Some times I see or hear something someone said that just isn't what they intended. Thanks for all the help.


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