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Old 09-14-2017, 03:51 AM
control control is offline
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Posts: 659

Originally Posted by TXFlyGuy View Post
Spoke with the instructor yesterday. He suggested reading this book before we go fly. I have a little over 100 hours tailwheel time, but that was in 1984 (DC-3).

And flying the '3 is nothing like flying an RV, or anything similar in size. Plus it was so looooong ago!

If you have over 100 hours in a DC3, you do not need instruction, you need a short refreshment flight
RV-14 kit #140138
I have entered the 90% done, 90% left to do zone
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Old 09-14-2017, 07:42 AM
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colojo colojo is online now
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Sausalito, CA
Posts: 296

Originally Posted by uk_figs View Post
I bought this and other books, also read a bunch of articles on the web about the physics of taildraggers (torque effects on takeoff, ground loops etc.), landing techniques, cross wind landings etc. All were good reads and interesting however at the end of the day about 10 hours of tailwheel instruction with a very good instructor in a Pacer was the best money I spent.
Ditto for me. The books don't hurt, but there's no substitute for actual experience with a solid instructor.
Joe Zuffoletto
RV-8 (flying)
Petaluma, CA (O69)
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Old 09-14-2017, 08:50 AM
tjo tjo is offline
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: La Center,wa
Posts: 196
Default Recommended

I read it and Stick and Rudder and I got my primary instruction in a J5 cub. As has been said, the most valuable thing will be the instruction in the plane, but I really recommend the book as well, it's just how I learn stuff.

The biggest thing for me was reading as much as I could to discern between all the fact and fiction surrounding the difficulty of a TW. The fact is, TW is no more difficult than NW. It is a similar comparison to driving a rear drive car in the snow vs. a front drive car in the snow. Yes a front drive is inherently stable, and so you don't need as much practice, but you can end up in the trees with either a front driver or rear driver. Similarly you can also screw up a TW or NW airplane, they are different, but not easy vs. difficult.


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Old 09-14-2017, 06:16 PM
madhun madhun is offline
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Buderim, Queensland Australia
Posts: 152
Default Ode to Taildragger

I had the benefit of my first 10 hours in a tigermoth, beautiful things to fly but as slow as they are challenging to land; mostly because they don't want to!

I think personally you only need read this, other than that go and fly as suggested.

Tail Dragger I hate your guts
I have the license, ratings and such,
but to make you go straight is driving me nuts.
With hours of teaching and controls in my clutch
It takes a little rudder ó easy, thatís too much!

You see, I learned to fly in a tricycle gear
With one up front and two in the rear.
She was sleek and clean and easy to steer
But this miserable thing with tires and struts
Takes a little rudder ó easy, thatís too much!

It demands your attention on the takeoff roll,
Or it heads towards the boonies as you pour on the coal
Gotta hang loose, donít over control

This wicked little plane is just too much
With a lot of zigzagging and words obscene
I think Iíve mastered this slippery machine.
Itís not too bad if you have the touch
Just a little rudder ó easy, thatís too much!

I relax for a second and from the corner of my eye
I suddenly realize, with a gasp and a cry
Thatís my own tail thatís going by!
You ground looping wreck, I hate your guts
Give a little rudder ó Oh no, THATíS TOO MUCH!
Quentin Carter
Bushby Mustang II - 170hrs and counting
$500, if Mrs. Hun ever asks aircraft parts are $500!
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Old 09-14-2017, 09:03 PM
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wjb wjb is offline
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Half Moon Bay, CA
Posts: 880

Originally Posted by madhun View Post
Tail Dragger I hate your guts ...
I Love it!
Bill Bencze
N430WB RV-7 #74152, tip-up. Working the baffles
Log at:
Defeating gravity one rivet at a time
VAF 2019 donation happily made
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Old 09-14-2017, 11:27 PM
luddite42 luddite42 is offline
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 407

Originally Posted by tjo View Post
The fact is, TW is no more difficult than NW.
People seem to like to repeat this. I don't know what you mean by "difficult", but there's a reason nose gear was originally marketed as "land-o-matic" and is now standard issue on most airplanes. Nobody likes to say anything about flying is "difficult", but the fact is that nose wheel is easier. The physics prove it. Same reason most people want automatic transmissions. They are easier and less work. Nothing is "difficult" once you learn. Tailwheel asks more of the pilot, so challenging is a more apt term than difficult. Those who say "tail wheel is not harder, just different" sound like they're selling something.

Last edited by luddite42 : 09-15-2017 at 06:29 AM.
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Old 09-15-2017, 05:50 AM
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mike newall mike newall is online now
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Yorkshire, England
Posts: 1,747

Flying a Tiger Moth is interesting...

Flying it a second time is plain stupidity - looks nice, has a wonderful 'presence' but an awful aeroplane to fly

Sadly, I have a few hours on one.........
"I add a little excitement, a little spice to your lives, and all you do is complain!" - Q

Donated in 2018
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Old 09-15-2017, 07:52 AM
TXFlyGuy TXFlyGuy is offline
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Jazz Town, USA, TX
Posts: 386

I bought some time in a Legend Cub last fall. The hardest thing to get accustomed to (besides the heel brakes), was the deck angle during the ground roll. The instructor kept telling me to "push the nose over", which I had a hard time doing.
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