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  #1  
Old 02-11-2018, 12:17 PM
lndwarrior lndwarrior is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Cloverdale CA
Posts: 190
Default Practice Routine for Keeping Skills Sharp?

I want to go practice today and I was thinking about what skills to work on. I was wondering if someone had worked out an efficient practice routine?

I'm imagining something that would kind of flow together to make the most efficient use of time in the air. Kind of like the type of process that an aerobatic pilot uses for a routine.

It may start with a particular type of takeoff, then some various types of practice during a long climb-out, then at altitude a series of practice routines, then a multi-step descent with various maneuvers during a step down, etc, until landing.

I could put something together myself but sometimes it's nice not to have to figure stuff out when someone already has a plan.

TIA
Gary

Last edited by lndwarrior : 02-11-2018 at 12:19 PM.
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  #2  
Old 02-11-2018, 12:19 PM
Sam Buchanan's Avatar
Sam Buchanan Sam Buchanan is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: North Alabama
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Default

When I feel rusty several circuits of the pattern with different types of landings restores confidence in all flight maneuvers. When the pattern work is really sharp, so is everything else because of the different flight parameters required for precise patterns and landings.
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1999 RV-6
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  #3  
Old 02-11-2018, 12:24 PM
Mike S's Avatar
Mike S Mike S is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Dayton Airpark, NV A34
Posts: 14,322
Default My $0.02

What will kill you or bend up the plane??

Work on those skills.
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Mike Starkey
VAF 909

Rv-10, N210LM.

Flying as of 12/4/2010

Phase 1 done, 2/4/2011

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  #4  
Old 02-11-2018, 12:30 PM
6 Gun 6 Gun is offline
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 835
Smile practice

I would say make every landing different forget pulling power at the numbers at a certain height learn to adjust to any situation and always make the first turn off.
Bob
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  #5  
Old 02-11-2018, 12:34 PM
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mfleming mfleming is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Joseph, Oregon
Posts: 289
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lndwarrior View Post
.......I'm imagining something that would kind of flow together to make the most efficient use of time in the air. Kind of like the type of process that an aerobatic pilot uses for a routine.......
I'm hoping someone shares there routines. That's a great idea to have a systematic approach similar to aerobatics. Maximum use of our avgas!

Back in the day in Alaska, I didn't have a prescribed routine...except...

Every landing was a spot landing. Not just in "on the line" but also left or right alignment (we mostly didn't have centerline to help us).

Of course keeping our skills up for landing off field was the big incentive but the payoff for airport landings was that making a taxiway turnoff was never in doubt. Practice used to include every manor of wind direction there was. Gusty quartering tailwinds were the most challenging but it can be done and the confidence from having those skills made everyday operations a breeze.

Hope you get some good input for this thread.

-M
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Michael Fleming
Joseph, OR
sagriver at icloud dot com

RV-7 Slider #74572
Started 11/2016
Empennage completed 11/2016 (sans fiberglass)
Ailerons and flaps completed 3/2017.
Wings completed 12/2017 (sans fiberglass)
Started on QB fuselage 01/2018
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  #6  
Old 02-11-2018, 04:03 PM
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Steve Melton Steve Melton is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 1,786
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in my 1000 hrs of flight time, I don't believe I have ever landed with a gusty quartering tailwind. what's it like? how differently does it behave?
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Steve Melton
Cincinnati, OH
RV-9A, Tip-up, Superior O-320, roller lifters, 160HP, WW 200RV, dual impulse slick mags, oil pressure = 65 psi, EGT = 1300F, flight hours = 600+ for all

Simplicity is the art in design.

see Amanda Melton for www.rvplasticparts.com
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  #7  
Old 02-11-2018, 05:39 PM
Tankerpilot75 Tankerpilot75 is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Oklahoma City, OK
Posts: 303
Default Rusty pilot - way too often!

When Iíve gone a period of time without flying I tend to do the following on the first flight out of my home airport (KRQO) which is uncontrolled (no tower).

1. Start engine, Taxi, Takeoff and Climbout paying close attention to checklist discipline, smooth application of power and airspeed control. I always ask for traffic advisories from OKC approach control on climb out letting them know my intentions.
2. Twenty to thirty minutes in a practice area working on steep turns, power on and power off stalls, and stall recognition/prevention. I try to pay close attention to heading control, stall speeds, altitude lost and smooth recovery. Itís also critically important to constantly visually clear the area and look for emergency recovery sights in case a forced landing.
3. Then itís time to request some practice instrument approaches from OKC approach control. These are usually done at an airport with an operational tower (KOKC or KPWA). Since Iím usually VFR between 5,000 and 6,500 feet when doing the above air work I must then descend VFR to around 3,500 ft for approach control to begin factoring me into their flow patterns. This is a great time to couple my autopilot, review my approach and setup an initial coupled approach sequence. I always fly my first approach coupled to allow me the opportunity to look outside for traffic (since this flight is normally a solo experience) and refresh in my own mind gps, EFIS and autopilot buttonology. This first approach is usually an ILS since my gps is non-WAAS. I fly it to a T/G and then do a second ILS (non-coupled) with a go around accomplished at DH.
4. I then return to my home airport and finish my instrument work with a non-precision GPS approach. I like to fly to the IAF, do one procedure turn, and if that approach is coupled, I then dial in my step down altitudes to MDA. Again this is usually to a missed approach. Then to the visual pattern for two or three touch and go landings.

This routine normally consumes about an hour and a half of flying (give or take 15 minutes). I feel like it refreshes several important skills: checklist discipline, basic aircraft control, instrument procedures and equipment operation proficiency, and finally a little confidence in my airmanship skills, landings, and working with air traffic control.

Some will argue flying practice instrument approaches without a safety observer isnít very smart (I cannot disagree here) but Iíd rather risk myself (under approach control supervision) than ask someone else to join me when itís been a while since Iíve flown. Besides single pilot operations are more the norm with me than multi pilot flight. With approach control calling out known traffic and ads-b in and out also providing traffic information I hopefully have minimized unknown traffic situations. However, ďsee and avoidĒ is always paramount so that is why Iím always ďpeekingĒ when flying instrument approaches (even in the rare situation of having an instructor/second pilot flying with me).

Hope this helps.
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IO-360, Hartzel CS prop, Older Aerotronics built panel Dual GRT Horizon WS, Garmin 340, 335, Dual 430s, Stratux hard wired to WS, Dynon D10A (backup EFIS)
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  #8  
Old 02-11-2018, 05:45 PM
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mfleming mfleming is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Joseph, Oregon
Posts: 289
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Melton View Post
in my 1000 hrs of flight time, I don't believe I have ever landed with a gusty quartering tailwind. what's it like? how differently does it behave?
Many of the strips and glaciers we used to frequent were one way affairs. Some of them were also no go-around.
This would put us in situations where the winds were frequently less than ideal.
Were there limits to what we could handle going into situations less than ideal? Of course...many times we would just fly away and wait for a better day (or hour).
But some times...many times, we would land with a direct tail wind or a quartering tail wind. Waiting for ideal conditions wasn't really practical.
So practicing was, for me, the one way to keep my skills fresh. That way, when crunch time came, there was no doubt on what I could or couldn't handle.
As far as what a gusting quartering tail wind feels like...it felt like pure concentration...with your mind, hands and feet working overtime

Getting ready for some practice back in the day!

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Michael Fleming
Joseph, OR
sagriver at icloud dot com

RV-7 Slider #74572
Started 11/2016
Empennage completed 11/2016 (sans fiberglass)
Ailerons and flaps completed 3/2017.
Wings completed 12/2017 (sans fiberglass)
Started on QB fuselage 01/2018
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  #9  
Old 02-11-2018, 06:10 PM
Vac Vac is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Niceville, Florida
Posts: 349
Default Resources

Hi Gary,

Here's a link to a quick reference "aircraft handling" card I keep in the in-flight guide in my airplane:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8E...ew?usp=sharing

Over on the Safety page, there is a sticky at the top that contains a link to transition training resources. Appendix A has some information about maintaining personal proficiency, and Appendix B contains an example of a briefing guide covering just about anything you might consider doing during a training flight. If you download a PDF version via the link provided, the table of contents is hyperlinked to help navigate.

Drop me a PM with an email address if you'd like a Word version of either document that you can edit.

Fly safe,

Vac
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Mike Vaccaro
RV-4 2112
Niceville, Florida
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  #10  
Old 02-11-2018, 06:41 PM
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RV3bpilot RV3bpilot is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: New Ulm, Minnesota
Posts: 268
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I'm with Sam, I stay near the airport and practice in the pattern.
Good radio communications
Holding the same altitude with changing air speeds.
Watching the instruments for engine problems.
Watching for other aircraft.
Practice landings and take offs.
Then when comfortable leave the area and enjoy the beautiful view.
Cheers
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New Ulm, MN 56073
RV3b N219BB
318 hours and counting
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