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  #101  
Old 03-19-2017, 01:37 PM
luddite42 luddite42 is offline
 
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Originally Posted by David-aviator View Post
The above was prefaced with lengthy solid discussion on why wheel landings were all around safer then full stall three pointers.
They are not generally all around safer in the least bit. I think you are the only one here who proposed that. But lots of pilots are biased one way or the other. Nothing wrong with having a preference as long as your preference doesn't hinder your skills and your ability to handle the full envelope in other aircraft with different characteristics.
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  #102  
Old 03-19-2017, 03:29 PM
David-aviator David-aviator is offline
 
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Originally Posted by luddite42 View Post
They are not generally all around safer in the least bit. I think you are the only one here who proposed that. But lots of pilots are biased one way or the other. Nothing wrong with having a preference as long as your preference doesn't hinder your skills and your ability to handle the full envelope in other aircraft with different characteristics.
Rick,
The premise about safer wheel landings was not mine, it was right out of Stick and Rudder. I didn't word it properly, the discussion and why is in the book.
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  #103  
Old 03-19-2017, 03:37 PM
David-aviator David-aviator is offline
 
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Originally Posted by BillL View Post
I am real novice at tailwheel flying, but in my tailwheel training in a Champ, we nearly always did 3-pointers. At the end of training we were coming down nicely and touched, mains down, pulled the stick back as the tail touched down, then a gust hit and up went the nose! The instructor assisted for a nice recovery. It was apparently right on that edge of flying and after planting the little wheel, the front end is at risk for a short period. That won't happen with a wheelie, but surely other things will. Transition training with M. Seager in the 7 was a lot more comfortable.
Bill, stick with your flight instructor. This discussion is about the RV-8, not a Champ.
For a broader perspective on aviation, read Stick and Rudder. It's about flying, really flying, like in the days when people loved this business and were trying to do better every day. The accident rate during training in WWII was awful. This book was written in that context and time frame. That awful accident rate was pivotal in getting rid of tail draggers for training.
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  #104  
Old 03-19-2017, 07:14 PM
Schooner69 Schooner69 is offline
 
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I am in the 3-point camp.

However, there is no doubt that each pilot should do what works best for him/her. A technique that is safe, repeatable, and winds up with the aircraft back in the hangar for another day.

However, I offer the following:

Can you land the aircraft with the tail wheel two feet in the air?
Can you land the aircraft with the tail wheel one foot in the air?
Can you land the aircraft with the tail wheel six inches in the air?
Can you land the aircraft with the tail wheel one inch in the air?

If you can do those, you can handle the final stage... a perfect 3-point.

Well... Maybe a little skip, but that's OK. (;>0)


Again, each to his own; however, I won't denigrate the chap that prefers not to 3-point nor should he feel it necessary to castigate those who do...

Last edited by Schooner69 : 03-20-2017 at 06:46 PM.
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  #105  
Old 03-19-2017, 08:05 PM
luddite42 luddite42 is offline
 
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Originally Posted by David-aviator View Post
Rick,
The premise about safer wheel landings was not mine, it was right out of Stick and Rudder. I didn't word it properly, the discussion and why is in the book.
I gotcha. That may be one author's opinion, but in general the idea that one method of landing is safer than the other is really not up for debate among experienced tailwheel pilots. It's purely aircraft characteristics + pilot preference.
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  #106  
Old 03-20-2017, 08:47 AM
David-aviator David-aviator is offline
 
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Originally Posted by luddite42 View Post
I gotcha. That may be one author's opinion, but in general the idea that one method of landing is safer than the other is really not up for debate among experienced tailwheel pilots. It's purely aircraft characteristics + pilot preference.
Believe it is aircraft characteristics and pilot preference also, except with some airplanes it is cut and dried. The DC-3 is wheel landed. So are some WWII fighters.

Was watching movie "Patton" the other night, interesting the German airplane in movie that came to pick up Rommel tried for 3 pointer but ended up raising tail and making it a wheel landing.

I remain total neophyte with tail wheel ops but am inclined to believe the 8 has characteristics making wheel landing more consistently satisfactory. If I knew how to set up a poll on subject, I would do it just to see how many guys prefer one method over other with this airplane (RV-8).

There is a lot of experience here and it is well we share it.

My intent is not to rewrite the book but to fly safe.
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  #107  
Old 03-20-2017, 01:17 PM
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Alan Carroll Alan Carroll is offline
 
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Originally Posted by David-aviator View Post
...it looks a little like a P-51, fly it like a P-51!

And finally from Stick and Rudder (1944)....The three-point landing is not the only way to get an airplane down. It is not even the best way.....the tail up "wheel" landing, made at high speed, is getting more attention from many pilots. It is the way airliners and "hot" Army ships are landed, but it is just as easy and just as suitable for the smaller lighter airplane.
After about >1000 hours in the RV-8 I don't have a strong opinion in the "which way of landing is better" debate (I routinely do both depending on conditions and the whim of the moment), but its interesting to see that many of the "hot army ships" actually seem to do fine with three-pointing. Also interesting to note that like the RV-8, not all of the warbird 3-pointers are perfectly smooth (which I don't equate to being less safe):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ehLPAdniWSo

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhAgU-GUc1Q

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oh1S-C1r_mA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Y3v1-WMJS8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NJI3l4_ug0g

The last video is particularly interesting because it shows a P-51 landing 3-point (sort of), and a P40 landing both ways!
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  #108  
Old 03-20-2017, 07:16 PM
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BruceEicher BruceEicher is offline
 
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As I read and think about my experiance, I feel landing is a lot about energy management. I learned and earned my TW endorsement in a Citabria. I was taught to slow it down until the airframe no longer possessed the energy to do anymore then plop on the runway, a little foot work was only sometimes needed. My instructor did admit he pulled on the rudder cables now and then to see if my feet were awake. 😉
Then as I finished my -8 I took four, not two or three, but four days with Mike Seager. He had to retrain me away from the Citabria habits some. The factory trainer is a -7 with a CS prop. Energy fell quickly in pattern and holding a slow and steep approach seemed easy. We three pointed all landings, some were bouncers, but all were manageable. My foot work needed refinement, and I suffered many times from pilot induced oscillations.
So then I finished my -8, had 12 hours of TW training, about 20 hours TW total, 150 PP Logged time total! And yes I took my 5 year build project up for the first time about 4 years ago. I now have 365 hours on my -8.
My -8 has a fixed prop. So I feel energy management takes a little more planning. I enter the 45 to downwind slower, about 135mph, I like the smaller pattern and steeper approach that both past mentioned instructors taught me. But if I am carrying energy on the short final I am going to either eat up runway to three point further down the runway, or wheel land near the numbers. Total runway used ends up about the same.
I fly into an 1800' strip several times a year, my personal limit. It would be no big deal, but some tall trees then a fence right before the numbers makes it my challenge. So with this runway I slow further and put myself behind the power curve, adding power over the trees just a little, not ideal for safety sakes I know. Then a touch of power again just to arrest the sink before touch down in a three point. I have never had to go around at this strip, some good bounces have taken place because of poor timing, but I have never had to brake to slow the plane down and always make an easy turn off the runway. Most of the time I have used half the runway.
Many other runways, either longer or with much less obstructions, I use the wheel landing, and when little extra power is used, I make the first turn off.
So either way, wheelie or 3 point, wind and other conditions aside, it is only a matter of timing. When do you wish to expell the last bit of flight energy? Touch down on two wheels and then expell, or drain the last drop just as you drop on all three.
IMHO....YMMV....😁
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  #109  
Old 03-20-2017, 08:36 PM
David-aviator David-aviator is offline
 
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Interesting videos Alan, but none of those guys were hot WWII pilots. They were civilians flying restored WWII airplanes many years later, certainly not spun up like guys flying combat missions every day in time of war.

Have your read "Stick and Rudder"?

Just a little information on Wolfgang Lengewiesche the author.

"Wolfgang Langewiesche (1907–2002) aviator, author and journalist, is one of the most quoted authors in aviation writing. His book, Stick and Rudder (1944), is still in print, and is considered a primary reference on the art of flying fixed-wing aircraft.

Born in Düsseldorf, Germany, in 1907, he migrated to America in 1929. He was a graduate of the London School of Economics and earned his master's degree from Columbia University. He was in a doctoral program in the University of Chicago when he decided to learn to fly and pursue a career in aviation.

Mr. Langewiesche wrote for Air Facts magazine, an aviation safety-related publication edited by Leighton Collins, and his articles were the basis for most of Stick and Rudder. The basic facts about flying that he emphasized in 1944 have withstood much criticism since then. Over 200,000 copies of the book had been printed by 1990.

He taught "Theory of Flight" to US Army aviation cadets in the ground school at The Hawthorne School of Aeronautics in Orangeburg SC during World War II, and test flew F4U Corsairs for the Vought Corporation. He later worked for Cessna as a test pilot. In the 1950s he became Reader's Digest's roving editor, retiring in 1986."


I'm not interested in selling the book, only what the guy wrote when the war was going on and how to get a handle on training pilots during that effort. Langewiesche was very influential at the time.

The stuff he wrote then makes sense to me today. Thats all I am saying.

Yes, I know it was some 73 years ago, but no one has invented aviation since then, just made up their own interpretation of it. There never has been a more intense time for aviators than WWII.

I knew (he passed away recently) one guy who flew P-51's in Italy in 1944, he was 21 years old when he got to the unit, had about 200 hours and never sat in a 51 until then, had flown P-40's in training. There was a guy in the unit who wrecked 2 51's because he could not land the airplane. There simply was not time to adequately train pilots. A problem Langewiesche was trying to fix back in the states. He was 37 years old at the time.

There are lots of misconceptions about aviation. One is this eternal fixation that "my way is best". I flew with a senior captain at TWA before crew resource management was implemented, back when airline captains walked on water. This guy had learned to fly in a Champ sometime during the war but never served in the military and somehow got a job with the predecessor of TWA. It was my leg and at about 100 feet said, I've got it let me show you how to land an airplane like the Champ. (he had talked about his glorious days flying a Champ) This was in a 707. He flared and hauled back on the stick trying to stall the Boeing in like a Champ, finally touched nearly dragging the tail on concrete, all this with a load of passengers.

I thought, well isn't this interesting. I was just hired and knew this guy was nuts (I had about 2000 hour of KC135 time from the military) but did not have the balls to turn him in. I wanted the job, not confront a senior captain in the front office, I would have lost that one.

Some time later a more senior first officer did turn him in and the captain had to go to "attitude adjustment" training in Kansas City. Airlines did bend over backward in those days to not fire a captain they had blessed for the job but did insist company airplanes be flown in accordance with Boeing and company policy.

My point being, none of us have invented this stuff. That was done a long time ago by guys like Langewiesche who contributed to it. What we can do is try to figure a way to apply it today to make aviation safer than it is. Things have changed so much, even the FAA does not believe stick and rudder skills are important anymore, based on some mysterious over educated premise invented by government psychologists who may not even be pilots.

So how does all this apply to flying the RV-8 (a passion of mine since building the darn thing).

There is a marked difference from landing a Champ and B-707. The RV-8 lies somewhere in between, where it is exactly I am attempting to discover for myself and sharing that experience here. Some days I wish I had not done that because it confuses the issue. We have a lot of guys here who are good pilots, don't crash and burn, but are rather closed minded about what they know.

What really scares me as a pilot is how a guy like Charlie Hilliard died. He was the best of the best in his day and kills himself flipping a Sea Fury after landing. How does stuff like that happen? I just don't know.

What I do know, getting back to the discussion, is I have to fly the 8 in a manner that leaves feeling like I have a chance to survive the next flight. I have never gotten a 3 point landing in an RV that leaves me with a feeling I was in control. And I've had quite a bit of instruction in the 6. In fact the guy i flew with most always wheel lands it and he is an outstanding pilot. The first guy I flew with always 3 pointed it and said I did just fine but on the inside i was a wreck, I had no control over the event except haul back on the stick and hope for the best.

So there you have it one more time, do it in a manner that suits you. There really is no "best way" for all, only a "best way" for you.

Unless of course you work for a living in military or airline and then you do it their way.
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  #110  
Old 03-21-2017, 02:47 AM
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Alan Carroll Alan Carroll is offline
 
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Originally Posted by David-aviator View Post
Interesting videos Alan, but none of those guys were hot WWII pilots. They were civilians flying restored WWII airplanes many years later, certainly not spun up like guys flying combat missions every day in time of war.
True, except for the P47 which was a War Dept. training film. Not so much Youtube in 1944

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Originally Posted by David-aviator View Post
Have your read "Stick and Rudder"?
Yes, in fact I own two copies and consider it an aviation classic. I also got my instrument rating instruction from Langewiesche's son, who is an accomplished pilot and author in his own right. He wrote a book about the U.S. Air ditching on the Hudson that was a bit controversial because it opined that the Airbus itself was partly responsible for the outcome. I think it would not be an exaggeration to say that father and son both tend toward confidently expressed opinions. Not necessarily wrong though.

I don't have anything like your amount of aviation experience but it strikes me that a variety of operational considerations might also influence the preferred landing mode. For example prop clearance might have been a factor with the P47, and passenger comfort or loading considerations with the DC-3? For quickly training thousands of WWII pilots standardization was no doubt important, which might lead to there being only one "right" way?

Quote:
Originally Posted by David-aviator View Post

What I do know, getting back to the discussion, is I have to fly the 8 in a manner that leaves feeling like I have a chance to survive the next flight.
I'm all for that! I've enjoyed reading your posts and particularly appreciate your openness on the subject.
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