How to improve flight training.

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goingnowherefast
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by goingnowherefast »

One should learn to fly various types of aircraft, especially early in their career.
Typically start on a 172, get checked out in a Piper, Diamond, find a nice taildragger somewhere. Different engines, Lycoming, Continental, Rotax if possible Radials are typically too expensive for average Joe. Gliders are a lot of fun and require active feet too.

Floats are a blast as well. Every Canadian pilot needs a float rating.
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PilotDAR
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by PilotDAR »

once airborne rudder control becomes identical in all low wing loading, trainer style airplane regardless of the placement of the "third wheel".
This has not been my experience. I have found different GA types require different attention to rudder use, and changes can also affect rudder sensitivity/co ordination. An example being that the installation of a STOL kit on a Cessna can enhance the aileron effectiveness, while not changing the rudder effectiveness, resulting in the need to apply more rudder in harmony with the aileron applied to maintain coordination, than that same plane would previously have required.

The differences between getting the rudder use coordinated or not on various GA types is generally not life threatening, other than possibly during low altitude maneuvering flight. So yes, one could fly a career as a good safe pilot without ever having flown a taildragger. Perhaps with dedication, pilots will apply themselves to precise rudder use exceeding what a tricycle airplane demands - that's great.

But, I have witnessed pilots paying inadequate attention to coordinated flight during slow flight, and entering an incipient spin because of this inattention. I had assured we had altitude to assure room for error and recovery. But, it was apparent to me that these pilots might have allowed these unsafe circumstances to arise closer to the ground, because they just weren't paying enough attention. If a pilot flies a career which rarely includes low speed, low altitude maneuvering, and never looses an engine, precise rudder use may never be demanded, and that pilot was a good pilot!

It is not condescending to draw attention to the fact that there are other learning/skill development opportunities, and different types to fly. We older pilots should be inspiring new pilots to seek out other training opportunities, which might not occur to them. If they choose not, okay, but it was suggested. A decade back, when I was feeling complacent about flying, I sought out helicopter training. I wasn't really looking to earn a license, though I eventually did, I just wanted to be challenged - and I was. So if you want the "pedals" experience, and can't find a taildragger to fly, go fly a helicopter!

Decades back, foolishly, with zero mentoring nor advice, I checked myself out in a Piper Tomahawk. I came to quite like this type, and flew a lot in several of them, but they are a different type to fly, particularly in short runways. I didn't hurt the plane, but I allowed the safety margins to be too fine, simply because I thought I knew enough without mentoring - that was not correct. 'Came the day to pass one on to its next owner. He came up, and told me about his considerable flying experience, but none on this type, nor anything similar. I offered him a check out, he declined. I (recalling my own foolishness) persisted with him. I pressed that he take me for one circuit, and if he felt comfortable, he take the plane, if not, I would fly a checkout with him. After a really sloppy circuit, he agreed he needed a checkout from me before he took the plane. Oh, by the way, I had hardly any taildragger time at that point in my experience, it was simply about having skills appropriate to the type, and appreciating the benefit of that.

There are so many types of aircraft, I believe that no one pilot can be competent flying all of them, there's just too much variation. And, as technology evolves, designers are going to try to design out the need for a pilot to actually fly the plane. But pilots, if you're proud of your workmanship while piloting, it would be nice if you sought out opportunities to experience the unique characteristics of different types. Maybe you have an aha moment, maybe your excellent skill allows you to fit in well with that type. In any case, broadening skills is never bad.
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5x5
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by 5x5 »

Here's a question - if you were designing the world's first airplane with today's infrastructure of predominantly paved runways so that prop clearance and roughness of the operating surface wan't a primary concern, would you build in dynamic instability that would manifest itself almost solely in the critical phases of transitioning from the air to the ground and the ground to the air? And by design make landing the most likely time (followed by take-off) at which loss of control would occur?

As far as instructing goes, I believe that a good instructor is a good instructor regardless of what machine they are teaching on. Experience flying tailwheels will never make a poor instructor into a good one.
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PilotDAR
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by PilotDAR »

I believe that a good instructor is a good instructor regardless of what machine they are teaching on
I cannot share that opinion. An instructor who is competent on one/some types, could be an ineffective instructor on other types! Would a good instructor in a 152/172/182 also be a good person to train a pilot in a 185 (wheels/wheel skis/amphibian)? The 185 flies about the same, but handling it near and on the ground will be rather different than a 172 in any case. Yes, they might train the basics of handling in flight well in many types, but as I state, no one pilot can be good in everything!
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B208
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by B208 »

photofly wrote: Mon Jun 17, 2019 9:15 pm Here's another question:
You have two pilots with the say 100 hours each.
One was trained on tricycle gear until solo the other was trained on and only flew tail wheel airplnes.
You owned a Cessna 172.
Which pilot would you feel less stress letting them fly your Cessna 172 without a check out?

Tailwheel guy.
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photofly
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by photofly »

B208 wrote: Tue Jun 18, 2019 8:35 am
photofly wrote: Mon Jun 17, 2019 9:15 pm Here's another question:
You have two pilots with the say 100 hours each.
One was trained on tricycle gear until solo the other was trained on and only flew tail wheel airplnes.
You owned a Cessna 172.
Which pilot would you feel less stress letting them fly your Cessna 172 without a check out?

Tailwheel guy.
You'd pick the pilot with zero tricycle time, over the pilot with experience of both landing gear configurations?
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telex
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by telex »


Of course a pilot can fly a whole career without ever flying tailwheel, but I opine that the tailwheel experienced pilot will more naturally fly with slightly better ease and precision. Perhaps that ease and precision will benefit that pilot one day in handling an unsymmetrical plane.

Better "ease and precision" in what regard?

I disagree that single engine tailwheel experience will benefit anybody in a multi engine aircraft with an engine out.
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jakeandelwood
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by jakeandelwood »

  • To fly a tailwheel aircraft one must be a good pilot.
  • Everyone pilot should be a good pilot
  • Therefore every pilot should fly a tailwheel aircraft.

Sounds like one of those weird questions on the Nav Canada wonderlic recruitment test: True or false, Joe flies a Cessna 172, according to the above statement is Joe a good pilot?
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C.W.E.
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by C.W.E. »

I find it interesting that there are so many pilots who feel it that something as basic as learning to fly a tail wheel airplane is not beneficial to improving flying skills.

Is it because the training industry has so few instructors who can teach on one?

God forbid I suggest flying sea planes or helicopters will also improve your aircraft handling skills.

And of course there are also sail planes and gyroplane licenses that one can get.

Of all the different types of flying machines my favourite ones for pure flying fun are gyroplanes....

...so I did the training and got myself a Commercial gyroplane pilots license, which is was the license I am most satisfied to have gotten.
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by C.W.E. »

I find it interesting that there are so many pilots who feel it that something as basic as learning to fly a tail wheel airplane is not beneficial to improving flying skills.

Is it because the training industry has so few instructors who can teach on one?

God forbid I suggest flying sea planes or helicopters will also improve your aircraft handling skills.

And of course there are also sail planes and gyroplane licenses that one can get.

Of all the different types of flying machines my favourite ones for pure flying fun are gyroplanes....

...so I did the training and got myself a Commercial gyroplane pilots license, which is the license I am most satisfied to have gotten.

...the next most satisfying one is the aerial applicators license.
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Last edited by C.W.E. on Tue Jun 18, 2019 12:56 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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telex
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by telex »

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C.W.E.
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by C.W.E. »

More exposure to a variety of aviation skills is clearly beneficial. However you suggested the tail wheel should be mandatory and that's a very different kind of suggestion !!!!
Why?

If as you agree it improves flying skills and is so simple a thing to add to the acquisition of a PPL what is the problem?
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C.W.E.
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by C.W.E. »

That's just the point; it's not all that simple, accessibility, cost, qualified instructors to name just a few related issues and to what end
I have a feeling I my suggestion is a bit to unreasonable in today's world of flying judging by the responses I am getting. :mrgreen:

But this one really puzzles me.
qualified instructors to name just a few
If a flight instructor is to inept flying wise to handle a simple tail wheel basic trainer then I guess that sums up why there is so much resistance to flying them.

I wish the colonel were still here because I am sure he would have some real good comments to add to this. :D
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Kejidog
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by Kejidog »

Tailwheel makes a better pilot? I am not so sure about that. I was recently up in plane with a “tailwheel” guy with about 100 hours more than me I have now well over 300. I can honestly say it was a scary experience for me. Not that he was dangerous but i have never been nor would I do to a passenger what I experienced. I was thrown around bumped and jostled The whole flight. The three circuits we did i never saw a stable approach nor was being close to the center line attempted and the climb outs were scary. In my 172 i fly coordinated and can trim out to just about any stable airspeed on approach. I pride myself on smoothness and hope it shows when i take someone especially another pilot up. I don’t think that the wheel on the back gave him any aircraft handling skills that I saw anyway. So how can this make him or anyone a better aviator?
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Last edited by Kejidog on Fri Sep 11, 2020 6:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
C.W.E.
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by C.W.E. »

Here's one to ponder, why was fully develop spin training remove.
Good question.

Judging from some of the responses here the less one is trained the better a pilot he/she will be, maybe that is the reason?.

When I was still in the advanced training business the lack of skills I found in so many pilots sure gave me a never ending supply of clients that is for sure.

Could it be because today's computerised aircraft that the industry uses has removed the need for a lot of the basic flying skills?

And flying is getting so expensive the new generation of pilots are getting licenses to fly these machines and why spend money learning skills they think they don't need
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by C.W.E. »

delete
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lownslow
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by lownslow »

5x5 wrote: Tue Jun 18, 2019 7:58 am Here's a question - if you were designing the world's first airplane with today's infrastructure of predominantly paved runways so that prop clearance and roughness of the operating surface wan't a primary concern, would you build in dynamic instability that would manifest itself almost solely in the critical phases of transitioning from the air to the ground and the ground to the air? And by design make landing the most likely time (followed by take-off) at which loss of control would occur?
The guys at Eviation seem to think it’s a good idea:
Image
What’s weirder is their concept drawings all showed tricycle gear.
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by C-GGGQ »

Yeah I wonder how that switch came about? Or is it available in both configs?
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mixturerich
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by mixturerich »

Improve social skills and you’ll improve flight flight training. Good social skills = good CRM.
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Big Pistons Forever
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Re: How to improve flight training.

Post by Big Pistons Forever »

The GA fatal accident rate in the 1950’s was 4 times higher than it is today so I find the idea that we should return to 1950’s training programs unpersuasive.

Good hands and feet are only part of what makes a “good” pilot. Learning and applying good airmanship and pilot decision making skills are just as important. The most dangerous pilot I ever knew was very good at greasing his tail dragger on even in challenging conditions but was an absolute idiot. He eventually killed himself in an accident after some monumentally bad in flight decisions.

However ultimately what you fly is irrelevant. Developing and maintaining really good fundamental flying skills is a choice. You can choose to work at always having the ball in the
middle, always be right on the selected airspeed and altitude, always touchdown at the selected touchdown point, straight, on centreline and in the correct attitude.......or just accept what ever more or less gets you to your destination.

The best pilot I ever met was an elderly gentleman who was the post card for “been there done that”. He had a beautiful 172 and as a young instructor I sometimes flew with him. I still vividly remember how the controls hardly moved but we were always exactly on speed and every landing was a master class in precise aircraft control.

He had nothing to prove anymore but he still made every flight a quest for aeronautical perfection.

You don’t need the worlds greatest instructor to choose to make a real effort to fly as precisely and accurately as you can......
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