Crosswind landings in a FW

Tina

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I have been flying my Cherokee a lot lately. I took my niece for a short flight on Monday when the winds picked up. I wanted to practice some wind flying. I warned my niece it is going to be a rough flight.

I flew to a airport only 15 minutes away and it was really rough, my niece was worried from all the turbulence we where going through but I told her don't worry it is just like driving on a bumpy road. I landed and we had breakfast and I could see the wind was picking up even more and warned her again the flight back was going to be even rougher. She was worried but I told her it will be just fine don't worry.

The flight back was really something I never experienced before and thought to my self, wow I am really getting a lot of good wind experience on this flight. The wind was blowing to the point it was hard to keep the plane level at times and gusts of updrafts where picking the plane up so high I had to cut most of the power and point the nose down to get back to where I wanted.

When I started my 45 to Hemet airport I noticed the wind pushing me to the airport very quickly then I turned downwind, I was getting pushed again to the airport I had to turn away from the airport to stay clear not to get blowned over the runway. I started my base and again noticed I had to turn final right after just turning base this told me I had a crosswind landing ahead of me.

I looked down the runway and seen that sock sticking strait out over the runway. I crabbed in sideways with higher speed then normal to get the plane to the runway. I said to myself this is going to be fun. I flew the plane crabbing all the way to the ground and cut power and turned the plane at the last minute and landed it. I was off the center line so I wanted to go around again and try to get it prefect. I told my nice where are going up again to practice that so I can get more crosswind practice. She screamed, no way and wanted out of the plane. I never laughed so hard and told her, OK we will call it a day.

I tried to explain to her this is all normal during windy days and just makes me a better pilot in the long run flying on windy days. She told me it was not fun for her and she thought she was going to die many times.

When I took her home I showed a You tube video and how you can control a plane in the wind and if you can't you can always do a go around.

Here is the video I showed her. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QX3S5y_SooM&feature=related
 

jcarleto

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Tina,

Flying in wind does a lot to improve your pilotage. I'm sorry to hear you scared your niece, however. Passengers are really tough to "unscare" after the fact. Logic and proof are wonderful things, but once that primal stuff kicks in, it is tough to turn off.

That was a good video to use as example. I hope you have good success in restoring her confidence.

*JC*
 

PTKay

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Tina,

I always rather side-slip than crab in the cross wind landing.
(I do not trust my reflexes to turn in a proper moment and risc braking the gear)

But my aircraft (Socata Rallye) is more or less "spinproof". :)

It is also not nice for the passengers, to hang with one wing down
and to land just on one wheel, but I always try to talk my passengers
all the way through the process.

From the moment I cross control I keep explaining what is happening,
and until now (fingers crossed) never had a case of pax freaking out. ;)

But maybe still flying sideways to the runway is more scary than with one wing down...

:D
 

Harry_S.

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When flying a neophyte, I try to do it on a "calm" day so there are no excursions from their anticipated and maybe fearful idea of flight. A passenger with some prior flight experience is a different story.

I agree with Paul that talking the passenger through what would be to you a normal procedure, is best (if not a distraction to your piloting) to help alleviate any passenger discomfort.

I'm sorry to say that I was ignorant of what I said above and subjected my young daughter to a flight that she thought was scary, and to this day, she is reluctant to fly in a light aircraft...even with her Papa. She is now 55 yrs. of age but she enjoys commericial flight however. Her first flight was not aerobatic. It was a little bumpy, but I don't think she liked the low level flight down the Mississippi?!

I use both the crab and the wing low approach when needed, but prefer the wing low, when in a high wing.


Cheers :)
 

jcarleto

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The other advantage to the crab method is that many fuel systems (such as the Bonanza and Navion) have a nasty habit of unporting in an extended slip, causing engine failure due to lack of fuel. Not the best thing on approach. Most of these aircraft require a "slips prohibited" warning...but even in aircraft without this problem specifically noted, an extended wing-low slip may cause issues with low fuel.

*JC*
 

Chuck_Ellsworth

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Another thing I could never figure out is why they train pilots to side slip down the final approach to correct for a X/wind.

Yet they don't train them to side slip to correct for a X/wind flying a cross country.
 

Tina

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I have taken my niece on many flights all of which where very pleasant ones. I was thinking I wanted her to have more experience in a unexpected windy day and thought she would get a kick out of it.

Over all she liked the experience but wished I would have warned her more on the landing part, it was totally unexpected and she thought we where going to crash. I told her for now on when I do something she is not familiar with I will explain it to her in more detail before I do it.

I learned a lot that day about how to treat your passenger then just flying a airplane on a windy day ;)
 

ckurz7000

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I always rather side-slip than crab in the cross wind landing....But my aircraft (Socata Rallye) is more or less "spinproof". :)...
A sidesilp doesn't put you in danger of spinning. Only a skid does. Actually, slipping will increase the safety margin of a spin since the wing is high on the side where you step in the rudder.

Chuck Ellsworth: I agree with you that a nice crab down final is best for high cross winds. But your justification only makes sense when taken tongue-in-cheek. Sorry if I'm slow on the uptake...

-- Chris.
 

PTKay

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The side slip gives me much more confidence and control.

I fly the aircraft al the way to the touch down the same way,
constantly applying the same controls.
When touching down with the upwind wheel and still slightly crabing
(due to your poor skills) the AC will tend to correct it by itself,
(not a tail dragger!).

Even after touch down I can balance the AC on the upwind wheel,
correcting to straighten the nose to the centre line and then gently
putting the other wheel down.
I am sure then, that I will not be pushed aside from the runway.

In crab you have to be extremely concentrated and precise.
If you go out of crab too early, the wind will push you away.
I you do it too late and touch down in crab (sideways)
you risk braking your gear, or in best case start to skid uncontrolled
over stressing the structure.
Even if you do everything correctly, there is still a sideways component
on the gear on touch down.

I prefer the easy way, I leave the other one to the real men... :)
 

ckurz7000

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The side slip gives me much more confidence and control....I prefer the easy way, I leave the other one to the real men... :)
You're right, slipping is easier. But unless you have a huge rudder, you will only be able to cope with relatively light cross winds.

What I do is to crab until close to the runway, then transition smoothly from crab to slip and touch down with the upwind mains first. Don't try to perform the "un-crabbing" and slipping part sequentially. Rather, as you remove crab, build up slip in one smooth transition.

Doing it this way, you'll be all set for even strong cross winds.

-- Chris.
 

PTKay

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You're right, slipping is easier. But unless you have a huge rudder, you will only be able to cope with relatively light cross winds.
I have a huge rudder. :)

Morane/Socata Rallye family is approved to 20 knots side wind component.
 

Harry_S.

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What I do is to crab until close to the runway, then transition smoothly from crab to slip and touch down with the upwind mains first. Don't try to perform the "un-crabbing" and slipping part sequentially. Rather, as you remove crab, build up slip in one smooth transition.

Doing it this way, you'll be all set for even strong cross winds.

-- Chris.


That's the method I used, Chris.

In initial training, I was taught side slip to steepen the approach and lose altitude quick. We trained in a J3 Cub and that first slip demo had me reaching left to hold on; it was a really steep one.

I liked the steep side slip so much, that when traffic allowed, I think 90% of my landings at my local strip were that way. Hit the threshold @ 1000 and let 'er slip. Ahh, memories. :D ;)


Cheers :)
 

Tina

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That day it was a 13 knot crosswind. I don't think I would have ever thought of doing a side slip in wind like that my ball would have been to far off and in unsteady wind like that I would think that is not recommended, I fly a low wing Cherokee. I had to bring my speed up to 90 to just get to that runway. I crabbed it in with speed keep the ball centered then just before touch down cut power and turn plane with rudder to land. It was a beautiful landing, I have to say but I was not on the center line like I would have preferred and wanted to do it again till I got it right.

Other pilots at Hemet that day where practicing the same thing and was getting it right. My niece was to worried because she did not understand what was going on so I had to stop.
 

PTKay

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I do not agree with that statement period.

Then again what would I know about the subject?
And when you touch town, you must immediately moe the ailerons to the correct crosswind taxi position. If not, at best, you will sideload the airplane; ...

So, this is the quote from the link by Tina.

It looks like, if you just kick the rudder after crab, that's not enough.
 

Chuck_Ellsworth

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Even if you do everything correctly, there is still a sideways component
on the gear on touch down.

PTKay.

Once again read what you typed.

If you have the airplane tracking straight down the runway aligned with the runway at touch down there will not be any side load on the gear at the moment of touch down.
 

LuftCarl

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Flying is not for the faint of heart or everyone would do it. My ex-wife was afraid of flying even in the heavies. All the expanation and calm on your part makes no difference to them, even if they typically trust you. I want my passengers to look forward to flying with me again.

I think it is irresponsible and cruel to make a passenger endure any more than the minimum to get them back on the ground if they are not having a good time. THEY don't need the flying experience. The PILOT does. I hope the next time you think you are about to die those in control go around one more time for YOUR experience.

Sheesh!
 
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