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Chris Lord October 31, 2018

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  • #31
    Originally posted by Vance View Post

    I doubt he would want someone to demonize him and denigrate the gyroplane community as Kolibri has done ignoring facts and embracing gossip.
    In all your extensive answers can you show me where you pointed out demonization, ignored facts, and embraced gossip? I didnít see any of those in this entire thread so would appreciate the clarification.

    Weíre all collectively trying to both deal with the loss of an excellent person/pilot//instructor (and yes, I knew Chris as well and have flown with him) and ensure the overall safety of our craft. One personís opinion about the limited details available is another personís ďgossipĒ, apparently. Cuts both ways.

    I respectfully ask we keep personal eye-poking off the chat and save it for PMs, if at all.

    Comment


    • #32
      EdL, thank you for that, and I, too, would like to keep this thread on-topic and respectful.
      I asked Vance to defend his allegation off-thread, in a message board, here.


      _____________
      The student pilot/manager of the LLC registered owner could clear up the mystery of N198LT's history and condition.
      However, if a rollover happened and was not reported (as required, from significant damage), he may not be very talkative.

      I just hope the truth comes out sufficiently to shed some light on this.

      Regards,
      Kolibri
      PP - ASEL complex (C172RG, Piper 180, C206, RV-7A), SP - Gyro (Calidus, RAF, SC2), soloed in gliders

      "
      When an honest but mistaken man learns of his error, he either ceases to be mistaken -- or he ceases to be honest."

      Comment


      • #33
        One does not simply roll a Cavlon and rebuild it. It's not that kind of gyro. Unless you have proof of a previous accident, you are just propagating unfounded rumors that are pretty much unrealistic.

        Has anyone noticed that this is the first fatality in a Cavalon in the USA? Or the UK for that matter. That is significant to me.
        But, even one is too many.
        Cammie Patch
        CFI, CFII, MEI, ATP, A&P/IA
        Rotax Heavy Maintenance Technician
        AutoGyro Dealer/CFI
        Glass Cockpit Aviation
        cammie@glasscockpitaviation.com

        Comment


        • #34
          Cammie, on FB you posted "Don't speculate that it rolled over unless you have absolute proof, about any of it for that matter."

          If we had "absolute proof" there would be no need for speculation.
          It is speculation and fact-finding that leads one to truth.


          Yet in your next sentence, you began to speculate yourself: "If you listen to the tape, you can hear the engine cycling, which is not going to be a pilot input at that point."
          and "Here is a very interesting thread on a Rotax forum that sounds a lot like what may have been happening with the engine [i.e., surging]."
          You concluded with:

          I think the facts point to pilot or engine more than or as much as machine.
          So far, it seems to me much more of a control issue, so I disagree.
          I wonder if some control part in the cockpit came undone or failed or was blocked.


          You say that a rollover and subsequent repair is "unrealistic".
          I don't quite understand that, as mild damage would seem repairable.
          Many Cavalon crashes have resulted in rollovers; here are a few.
          (I don't know if they were repaired or totaled.)


          19-11-17 - Casa Grande airport, Arizona, USA - Auto-Gyro Cavalon - N953LS

          23-10-16 Hondo airfield, Texas, USA - Auto-Gyro Cavalon - N477AG

          20160819 - St Marienkirchen, near Suben, Austria - Auto-Gyro Cavalon - D-MXDR

          14th June 2016 - Morningstar airfield, Western Cape, South Africa - Auto-Gyro Cavalon - ZU-RKR

          Feb 15th 14 - Kitty Hawk, South Africa - ZU-RKC



          There are other "realistic" scenarios, such as a rotor flap and partial tip-over, for example.
          Or a hard landing that bent something.
          If it was repaired on the QT, then reports of such would float about as rumor.


          I've heard "rollover" and I've heard "accident", and I heard both before Christine Toevs posted the below on FB:

          ...this accident aircraft I understand was an accident re-build and was known to be a pig to fly & called a "death-trap"
          by many who spent a few minutes in it - landed & vowed ...never to fly it again! ....YES ...that IS hearsay! ..... but from more than one source!

          The gyro was known "problem child" from initial construction ....was it also rolled over and rebuilt???? ...THAT is the ?
          John Rountree posted on FB:
          Here are the best RUMORS I have to go on.
          I only have rumors on both sides of being rolled over [or not].
          I think Christine and John appropriately qualified what they'd heard as "rumors" or "hearsay".
          I see nothing wrong with discussing rumors as long as they are not allowed to morph into "fact" without evidence.


          Aviation people around West Palm Beach, Florida should weigh in here.

          Regards,
          Kolibri
          PP - ASEL complex (C172RG, Piper 180, C206, RV-7A), SP - Gyro (Calidus, RAF, SC2), soloed in gliders

          "
          When an honest but mistaken man learns of his error, he either ceases to be mistaken -- or he ceases to be honest."

          Comment


          • #35
            Originally posted by EdL View Post

            In all your extensive answers can you show me where you pointed out demonization, ignored facts, and embraced gossip? I didnít see any of those in this entire thread so would appreciate the clarification.
            "Regarding Chris Lord's N198LT, it seems confirmed from multiple sources that it had previously been rolled over,
            and repaired by AutoGyro USA in Maryland. The obvious question is whether some control system parts were not prudently replaced.

            Furthermore, rumor has it that after the repair N198LT still had a bad rotor shake, and that Chris was trying to reduce it.
            It is unknown if he had succeeded doing so."

            ...this accident aircraft I understand was an accident re-build and was known to be a pig to fly & called a "death-trap"
            by many who spent a few minutes in it - landed & vowed ...never to fly it again! ....YES ...that IS hearsay! ..... but from more than one source!

            "This jives what I've also been hearing.
            Certain people out there in Florida know the local reputation of N198LT.
            This issue needs to be aired out, along with detailed repair records of that Cavalon."

            "I.e., was it flying on older parts which may have been damaged in the rollover yet not replaced?
            The rumored bad rotor shake seems connected."

            In my opinion if Kolibri heard the rumors Chris Lord likely heard the rumors.

            I would not take a friend on a 64 nautical mile flight at near VNE in a Cavalon that had crashed and been badly repaired; that flew badly and had excessive rotor shake and I donít know anyone who would.

            This pretty well fits my definition of demonizing the pilot of the accident aircraft and AutoGyro USA.

            This appears to me to be based on gossip.

            It doesn't matter who said it first, he posted it; it is his gossip.
            Regards, Vance Breese Gyroplane CFI http://www.breeseaircraft.com/

            Comment


            • #36
              "One witness who lives 1.25 miles south reported seeing the gyro "kept going around and around".
              That, in conjunction with a closer witness only a half mile away on Hwy. 27 who described a "nosedive from about 200 feet "
              seems to portray something looking like a graveyard spiral and then fast vertical fall."

              From Wikipedia: "In aviation, a graveyard spiral is a dangerous spiral dive entered into accidentally by a pilot who is not trained or not proficient in instrument flight when flying in instrument meteorological conditions (IMC)."

              Chris Lord was an instrument trained pilot and conditions were VFR. Graveyard spiral may have a nice ring to it; it is unrelated to anything to do with a gyroplane on a VFR flight.


              "The propeller hub remained attached, and the composite blades appeared to be uniformly severed at their roots prior to fire exposure."
              "This seems to indicate a pre-crash prop/rotor strike (i.e., rotor flap in those last moments)."

              "What this indicates to me is that the propeller was turning when it hit something that broke the blades."

              It does not indicate to me that there was a blade flap and the propeller blades were damaged by the rotor.

              All it indicates is the propeller was going around when it came in contact with something.

              There is a lot more. I am going to give it a rest now.
              Regards, Vance Breese Gyroplane CFI http://www.breeseaircraft.com/

              Comment


              • #37
                Originally posted by Vance View Post

                "Regarding Chris Lord's N198LT, it seems confirmed from multiple sources that it had previously been rolled over,
                and repaired by AutoGyro USA in Maryland. The obvious question is whether some control system parts were not prudently replaced.

                Furthermore, rumor has it that after the repair N198LT still had a bad rotor shake, and that Chris was trying to reduce it.
                It is unknown if he had succeeded doing so."

                ...this accident aircraft I understand was an accident re-build and was known to be a pig to fly & called a "death-trap"
                by many who spent a few minutes in it - landed & vowed ...never to fly it again! ....YES ...that IS hearsay! ..... but from more than one source!

                "This jives what I've also been hearing.
                Certain people out there in Florida know the local reputation of N198LT.
                This issue needs to be aired out, along with detailed repair records of that Cavalon."

                "I.e., was it flying on older parts which may have been damaged in the rollover yet not replaced?
                The rumored bad rotor shake seems connected."

                In my opinion if Kolibri heard the rumors Chris Lord likely heard the rumors.

                I would not take a friend on a 64 nautical mile flight at near VNE in a Cavalon that had crashed and been badly repaired; that flew badly and had excessive rotor shake and I donít know anyone who would.

                This pretty well fits my definition of demonizing the pilot of the accident aircraft and AutoGyro USA.

                This appears to me to be based on gossip.

                It doesn't matter who said it first, he posted it; it is his gossip.
                Some truly head-scratching stuff here. Glad youíre planning to give it a rest, per your next post. Good idea.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Originally posted by Vance View Post
                  "One witness who lives 1.25 miles south reported seeing the gyro "kept going around and around".
                  That, in conjunction with a closer witness only a half mile away on Hwy. 27 who described a "nosedive from about 200 feet "
                  seems to portray something looking like a graveyard spiral and then fast vertical fall."
                  .
                  When I read descriptions like this, I think of a typically maneuver for an engine out landing, as observed by a novice. Circle an area at low speed to loose altitude, then nose down to stay on the right side of the height velocity curve. I couple that with observations about the engine. And I think of what would happen if the gyro clipped a power line. -This scenario seems to fit the facts just as well as a control failure. I for one will never know what actually happened. What I will do is elevate my awareness of power lines if/when my gyro has an engine issue.

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Hi Chris

                    When you hear the Mayday (on LiveATC) it sure seems you can clearly hear the engine going at the first Mayday call, so Iím not sure this was strictly an engine-out situation at its start. Plus, with all the practice we do for engine out and Chrisí extensive experience teaching that, pure speculation here, but A) Iím not sure Chris would have made a Mayday call at that point for that and B) I suspect he would have handled it well and avoided power lines - and a trailer park - if he could. Pure speculation, I realize.

                    For those of us he left behind, especially those flying Cavalons or Caliduses, ruling out a control failure or other issue related to the craft seems important. For me that hasnít been done yet.

                    Personally, when I learned it was Chris, I really pondered if it was worth continuing in gyros; if he can be killed like that, well ...

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Vance, I merely wrote "seems to portray something looking like a graveyard spiral" as a visual metaphor for what the witness described.
                      I did not claim that Chris had actually entered a graveyard spiral, much less that IMC was present.
                      Forgive me for momentarily forgetting that nuance often escapes you.



                      "The propeller hub remained attached, and the composite blades appeared to be uniformly severed at their roots prior to fire exposure."
                      I'll stick with my current belief that the most likely scenario to produce that (pre-crash) effect was prop contact with the rotor blades.
                      You're free to offer a countering theory.



                      I would not take a friend on a 64 nautical mile flight at near VNE in a Cavalon that had crashed and been badly repaired;
                      that flew badly and had excessive rotor shake and I donít know anyone who would.

                      This pretty well fits my definition of demonizing the pilot of the accident aircraft and AutoGyro USA.
                      It's a pity that you refuse to recognize that I've already clarified in post #29 that Chris seemed to have been satisfied
                      with the flying condition of N198LT before taking Brugger on that trip. I'm not the one demonizing another here.

                      Nonetheless, something mechanical seems to have failed in the control system.
                      We don't know if such an imminent failure was discernible during preflight inspection, or could have been caught in its annual condition inspection.

                      Speaking of its annual of 4 October, I wonder if the builder/seller performed such?
                      If not, who did?

                      Regards,
                      Kolibri
                      PP - ASEL complex (C172RG, Piper 180, C206, RV-7A), SP - Gyro (Calidus, RAF, SC2), soloed in gliders

                      "
                      When an honest but mistaken man learns of his error, he either ceases to be mistaken -- or he ceases to be honest."

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        In a graveyard spiral the angle of bank and speed increase. In my opinion what is described appears nothing like a graveyard spiral.

                        The idea of the Cavalon going straight down from 200 feet also seems unlikely. It would be more likely for the Cavalon to have gone straight down after it hit the pole and most power poles are not 200 feet high.

                        Writing in the most general terms for a rotor blade to contact the propeller blades at the root the rotor blade path would need to become extremely divergent. This would be very unusual at flight rpm.

                        It seems more likely to me that the propeller blades being severed at their root was part of the crash rather than pre-crash or pre impact.

                        In my opinion there is not enough information to assume something mechanical failed in the control system.

                        The surging of the engine heard in the radio transmission seems to me an unlikely part of a control system failure.
                        Regards, Vance Breese Gyroplane CFI http://www.breeseaircraft.com/

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by Vance View Post

                          The surging of the engine heard in the radio transmission seems to me an unlikely part of a control system failure.
                          We are of course all speculating with the hope of learning something. Could the surging that was heard in the radio transmission not have been some type of compensatory throttle input by Chris in response to pitch control instability rather than an engine problem?
                          I'm not confident that we will learn much more from the FAA. I would hope that the Autogyro team may be forthcoming at some point, though I am not too confident of that either. I do not know for sure, but I think it's quite possible that they were in Sebring after the accident, as they were scheduled to be exhibiting at the Deland Light Sport expo, where I am based, the next day and the days after, and they did not show.
                          Personally I would still put my money on a control system failure, simply because knowing Chris's skills and viewing the surrounding environment I think Chris would have most likely been able to put the aircraft down safely if it were an engine problem.
                          Anyway, it would be some small, small compensation in Chris's memory, if the cause is somehow determined. With the amount of damage and the FAA's usual limited detail in these accidents I'm not expecting we will ever know for sure what happened; but unless I learn something definitive to the contrary, a control issue and not engine problems would be my considered guess.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Rememeber it hit a pole and wiresbefrore it hit the trailer.
                            http://gyroplanetraining.com/

                            Helping Plan a grand 2017 PRA convention


                            PRA BOD # 38604

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Brent Drake View Post
                              Rememeber it hit a pole and wiresbefrore it hit the trailer.
                              Yeah, but knowing Chris's skills and looking at the environment nearby, still seems unlikely that he would have tried to put the aircraft down anywhere near the trailer and the poles if it were an engine out. Chris was not only very skilled, he was one of the calmest pilots I ever flew with. Do most gyro pilots, particularly those with Chris's skills, make Mayday calls for engine outs, or at least when making the call would we not expect them to state that they have an engine problem? Again all speculation, but the scenario just puts an engine out, low down on the list of possibilities in my assessment of the info we currently have. Of course I am not ruling out an engine failure, just seems to be the least likely of the scenarios. Remember, if it was an engine out, we know it was not on takeoff, the accident occurred about 8nm from the airport, so one would expect that Chris would have adequate time and altitude to make a well considered engine out landing particularly looking at the options in the area.

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                "The propeller hub remained attached, and the composite blades appeared to be uniformly severed at their roots prior to fire exposure."
                                It's an odd facet of the crash. My thinking about it is this:
                                Since the impact caused a near instantaneous explosion and fire, the prop blades severing (without fire exposure) seems to have happened in the air.
                                I don't see the likelihood of the prop blades fully striking either the power pole or the wires, which, to me, leaves the rotor blades as what sheared off the prop blades.
                                We don't know what the rotor rpm was in those last seconds.



                                The idea of the Cavalon going straight down from 200 feet also seems unlikely.
                                Perhaps, but that's what two or three witnesses reported seeing. Estimated altitude varied from 150-300' AGL.


                                In my opinion there is not enough information to assume something mechanical failed in the control system.
                                Well, you're nearly alone on that.


                                The surging of the engine heard in the radio transmission seems to me an unlikely part of a control system failure.
                                Even if were turbo wastegate surging, Chris could have easily shut off the engine over the lakeshore and landed safely.
                                If it were such surging, which I'm not convinced it was.

                                Regards,
                                Kolibri


                                PP - ASEL complex (C172RG, Piper 180, C206, RV-7A), SP - Gyro (Calidus, RAF, SC2), soloed in gliders

                                "
                                When an honest but mistaken man learns of his error, he either ceases to be mistaken -- or he ceases to be honest."

                                Comment

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