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Landing the Classic Flash. Or how not to...

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Landing the Classic Flash. Or how not to...

Old 09-30-2013, 10:10 AM
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Chris Smith
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Default Landing the Classic Flash. Or how not to...

I could use a refresh on setup and technique if any Classic pilots have advice. It's been 3 years since flying my Flash prior to this past weekend.

I may hold the distinction of being one of the few Flash owners to crow hop and dork a Classic Flash landing. Many pilots will say how easy this thing was to land. I would have mostly agreed until this weekend. I've done my share of breaking pins, throwing tires off rims and s-turn takeoffs, but I find with concentration and throttle control, those issues can be managed. But this time, I managed to break a horizontal stab! This I assure you, takes a special talent to do considering the strength of these planes.

So there I was this weekend. I dusted off my Classic Flash after a 3 year period and put in a K100 kero start. Nothing fancy. There's no wing tank. I put on some pro-link pin struts on the mains, new intairco wheels, and a new mustache for the pilot bust.

The re-maiden was a treat. Yucking it up (the new nose steering gyro tamed the takoff a bit), I rolled onto final set 3 degrees nose high approach (no crow) and touched down. Slightly fast but no issues with a straight roll-out. I agreed with Scott(my caller) that I could have held off a bit more prior to wheels down.
The next morning pilots were standing around drinking coffee, milling about, but no one was flying, so I fire up the flash, takeoff, fly 6 mins, roll onto final set 3 degrees nose high, let it settle, then crow-hopped for 50 feet, broke the nose trunion, right main gear pin, cracked the right wing tank, and cracked the right horizontal stab. Right on centerline I should add.

I know the audience really wanted to clap, but they are kind in Georgia.

What is your Classic Flash advice for more consistant landing results? I'm at throttle idle at 25-30 feet high on final. I find any more than 3 degrees nose high, unless a foot off the ground, I break pins. Any flatter and there is no runway long enough. I think I'm still fast. I also think if the final is too long my blue Flash disappears with the tree backdrop. Hate to upgrade to full Dreamworks gear until I get my act together. Surely, I would crack a wing next.
Old 09-30-2013, 10:42 AM
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Dave Wilshere
 
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Chris

As always with these requests...more info! How much flap are you running?
Crow-hop as you call it, just means you were too fast, in this case far too many people try and "land" it again as soon as possible...don't you just add energy each bounce. When it skips, add UP elevator to lift off again, fly for another 30-40' and land again...it will stop bouncing then!

The Classic Flash lacks drag, flaps are small and if you use lots of flap the elevator goes 'dead' and its more critcal. CROW raised ailerons (3/8") will increase the nose high sit and with 1 1/4-1 1/2" of flap the classic will scrub speed and land mains only...every time

Dave
Old 09-30-2013, 10:45 AM
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I just flew mine yesterday and I use crow, maybe 1/4in each aileron, full flaps and similar to your description, idle down on final. Comes in tad nose high with a nice descent and just flare that puppy about 1 to 2 feet off. Flare will make it more nose high but with my CG it works to settle and touch mains and then nose.

I have screwed the flare up once(late/pilot got caught being spectator admiring nose high descent instead of flaring) and its like a carrier landing. She took it fine but avoid that now ..but an interesting exercise in "autopilot on final". Before crow I never was consistent. Love it the way it is now.
Old 09-30-2013, 11:12 AM
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My movements are root trailing edge. 1/4" would work too!

Dw
Old 09-30-2013, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Dave Wilshere View Post
Chris

As always with these requests...more info! How much flap are you running?

Dave
Dave,
My Flaps are at 50mm, and CG at 365mm gear up. As stated I have no crow, however will 6mm aileron work? (measured at inner edge next to flap).
Old 09-30-2013, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Chris Smith View Post
Dave,
My Flaps are at 50mm, and CG at 365mm gear up. As stated I have no crow, however will 6mm aileron work? (measured at inner edge next to flap).
Chris I'd reduce the flap a little, you will be losing a little too much elevator feel at 50mm...even 45mm would make a difference! Yes, 6mm is enough to change the AOA on approach

Dave
Old 09-30-2013, 02:09 PM
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That's what I'll do. Now to decide if the stab is repairable. 3/4 of the elevator FWD edge at the live hinge has delaminated. I'd say there's an inch or so from the hinge line moving toward the LE that has been affected.

The bigger issue may be the crease running chord wise. The foam sandwich under the surface appears to be compromised.

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Old 09-30-2013, 02:14 PM
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Chris,

Dave set up my classic Flash and I have just refined settings to suit me, CG is at 365mm, movements are 50mm flap, crow is 3-4mm (approximately the thickness of the aileron at tip), with crow I have mixed 6% down elevator. My setup for landing is gear down commmencing final circuit, as I enter final turn put flap in (they are on a delay of about 2 secs to fully deploy), she slows down as i come around the turn, level off and fly in on the throttle - No problem.

Nick
Old 09-30-2013, 05:31 PM
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Thanks Nick. I'm going to try slower pattern speeds and go back to shorter finals. I may find I've got more residual thrust than expected. It is hard to draw any conclusions with only two flights since re-maiden.
Old 09-30-2013, 06:17 PM
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Practice some very slow dirty passes and learn how much it takes to keep it flying. Thats the power you should use for your final circuit.
Old 10-01-2013, 06:28 AM
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I found the perfect setup for my Classic flash was 22 1/2 degrees of takeoff flap and 45 degrees of landing flap with 6-8 mm of crow mixed in. I found my best approach routine was to go straight to full flaps in the middle of my downwind leg and drop the throttle to about 3 clicks off of idle (with a 31 lb thrust Cheetah). This would give me a nose up attitude and predictable sink rate which was easy to judge when on base plus I still had some room to come off the throttle on final if needed. Then just chop the throttle and let it sink in on the mains. I actually found my Classic Flash more predictable to land than my Ultra.
Old 10-01-2013, 07:00 AM
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I'm sure it lands similar to the Classic Lightning. I've never landed a Classic Flash but I've flown them. If you are bouncing on landing chances are you are not throttling it in and relaxing the elevator too soon. Ditto on the slow passes. Get it up high and keep flying it slow until it stalls. You will get that muscle memory back on how to land her and you will again gain confidence on how slow you can fly this jet.
Old 10-01-2013, 08:10 AM
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Crow, crow, CROW!!

You will thank us.

I actually had about 85 degree (that's right, just about perpendicular) flap inputs. I was able to drive my flash all. the. way. down.

Another killer on these things, is make sure you don't land tail heavy (I had 4 tanks of smoke in my flash, 2 behind the cg) it will porpoise on you like it is its job.



Here's a vid:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lHTM47lzrqE
Old 10-01-2013, 08:49 AM
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You guys are awesome. Thanks for the input. 3 years ago I never had issues with crow hopping this Flash. Now I've got to figure out what I'm doing differently.
Now I pray my stab can be fixed because it appears CARF has no replacements.

Rav, can you make the video public?
Old 10-01-2013, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Chris Smith View Post

Rav, can you make the video public?
Hmm, I think I just did. Try again.
Old 10-01-2013, 11:53 AM
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Awesome video Raffy!!. Glad to see this back on youtube. You still have that Bandit, yes?
Old 10-01-2013, 12:52 PM
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Thanks Darren. That bandit in the video was sold to Afterburner1, and I bought another one. The same one you've seen!



Old 10-05-2013, 02:12 PM
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Seems no one is ever around with a camera when I have a perfect landing. But I did manage to find some old clips of my Flash landing.
There are trees at the ends of our club runway so I use a lot of flap and a little crow to drop it in. You can see the amount of flap near the very end of the clip.

http://youtu.be/xQe6my42B6c

Last edited by causeitflies; 10-05-2013 at 09:07 PM.
Old 10-05-2013, 05:02 PM
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Chris, I don't remember where I ran my cg except that it was fairly aft of the range and I do remember flaps were 40mm. The plane will actually fly quite slow. I never felt the need to use crow either and I had the big 36lbs of push behind it which had to be throwing out a little more at idle. Once you get it feeling comfy at the slower speeds then you should have no problem making consistent landings with 400/500 feet. Trimming it out just right with 40mm of flap will take a lot of work load off as well. I just had a switch I flipped as a flight mode that just changed my trim only for takeoff phase, warp speed, and dragging it in for landing.
Old 10-05-2013, 05:10 PM
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Here's a video I found flying at ky jets... Drizzly and ceilings at 250/300ft.

http://youtu.be/2eNSblX2zeg
Old 10-05-2013, 06:43 PM
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Justin,
Before I stopped flying it 3 years ago, it was predictable and no issues other than tire problems. I've managed to change CG or flap settings enough to cause issues since then. Randy is pretty sure he saw the nose fall through at 1 foot unexpectatedly. The nose gear hit first and pogo 'd the thing into the air nose high. Came down on the tail well below flying speed.

It acted as if the elevator was blanked. The day before it landed ok but I had the nose up only 3 degrees on touchdown. Just flaring a little more broke the jet. I will drop to 40mm flaps and try some more. This time i'll get it on film.

watching your video, I note that I've never gotten away with as much AOA as you had. Must be my CG.
Old 10-05-2013, 09:02 PM
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Found another Flash landing clip

http://youtu.be/4sMm-Zt5a-w
Old 10-06-2013, 06:35 AM
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I know what you mean you mean Chris. I was lucky enough to have Kirby flying his a year before mine got into the air so I just took all the numbers from his initial tests...

i had had a wing tank as well, but as far as c.g. Goes, I can't say for certain but I'm almost positive with the tanks empty you could almost balance the plane on the tail sitting on the main, but I'm not for sure. I just knew I flew quite a bit back.

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