Midair applicable to gyroplanes.

BEN S

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Also, as I see it the 340 pilot is at fault
Look at it this way, the 340 is.a big speeding semi.
The 152 is a small girl friendly car any college girl would pick like a VW...

You have a CDL and a new driver mixing it up on the freeway merge...

The CDL driver is held to a higher standard because he is supposed to be a pro.

Voila' 340 is at fault.
 

Vance

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Your right!
I hope I didn't offend any one named Bruce...
I sure seem to get things mixed up a lot more as I get older...
Red wire...green wire....hell what difference does it make!

Scary thing is...I am 52 and figure its sort of normal...
We got ancient peoples still flying like 70 plus!!!
I imagine they forget things like where the ground is hahahahhaa

Term limits for politicians AND pilots!!!
Forgetting things is why I use check lists.

I advocate using check lists for all ages.

I have not met anyone who has not forgotten something.

I am 73 and have not forgotten where the ground is.

One of my CFI mentors is 89 and he regularly does ferry flights into complex airspace in unfamiliar aircraft.
 

BEN S

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But Vance, what if you forget to use one of your checklists?

I dunno....I wouldn't chsnce it
 

Vance

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But Vance, what if you forget to use one of your checklists?

I dunno....I wouldn't chsnce it
I suspect that is your sense of humor Ben.

Not getting people to use check lists consistently can be linked to many aviation accidents.

The airlines have a lot of very specific policies to help people remember to use their check lists because they have found out how important they are.

I thought Explosive Ordinance Disposal Specialists were fond of using check lists.
 

Tyger

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Our local CFI visited the tower at Rocky Mountain airport, and they agreed on best pattern for the gyrocopter. They ended up with this altitude too. Thanks for posting that Tyger!
Roger... and note also what is implied by this sentence: "Landings not on the runway must avoid the flow of fixed-wing traffic."
 

Andino

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Your points are well taken and I did not do the specific detailed analysis as you did for this specific airport situation. As has been stated, both pilots made wrong decisions, but one thing is definite, the 340 pilot initiated the sequence of events.
Thank you. Yes, the 340 pilot initiated the dangerous sequence, probably stunning the 152 pilot with such a rapid closure rate. The twin pilot had his wife on-board, so I wonder if she spoke up about the 180 kt short final? Maybe he had some kind of episode, and got foggy? We'll probably never know.
 

Andino

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Also, as I see it the 340 pilot is at fault
Look at it this way, the 340 is.a big speeding semi.
The 152 is a small girl friendly car any college girl would pick like a VW...

You have a CDL and a new driver mixing it up on the freeway merge...

The CDL driver is held to a higher standard because he is supposed to be a pro.

Voila' 340 is at fault.
Yes, true, but VFR pilots still must "see and avoid." One needn't cooperate with crazy.
 

WaspAir

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I have been thinking about what one could do at 180+ knots if joining the pattern was chosen as an alternative. Turn radius at that sort of speed and, say, 40 degrees of bank in a coordinated turn (pulling 1.3g in that twin), is well over a kilometer. Not exactly nimble. The same excessive speed that made stopping on the runway improbable would have made turns huge. His best option would have been to overfly toward the ocean (without further descent), slow down quite a bit, and then plan a pattern entry from there. When he realized he couldn't see traffic in the pattern ahead, that could have saved the bacon.
 

Mayfield

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I have been thinking about what one could do at 180+ knots if joining the pattern was chosen as an alternative........... When he realized he couldn't see traffic in the pattern ahead, that could have saved the bacon.

I have been thinking about what one could do at 180+ knots if joining the pattern was chosen as an alternative. Turn radius at that sort of speed and, say, 40 degrees of bank in a coordinated turn (pulling 1.3g in that twin), is well over a kilometer. Not exactly nimble. The same excessive speed that made stopping on the runway improbable would have made turns huge. His best option would have been to overfly toward the ocean (without further descent), slow down quite a bit, and then plan a pattern entry from there. When he realized he couldn't see traffic in the pattern ahead, that could have saved the bacon.
I've been thinking about it as well. Like so many times, split second decisions, or lack of decisions, lead to needless death. Sad.
 

BEN S

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But until someone dies we/they keep getting away with it, convincing ourselves we knownwhat were doing.
 

GyroRon

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I will add, that if you're in the pattern at an uncontrolled airport and you hear someone announce a straight-in approach... There is nothing wrong and nothing stopping you from getting on the radio and reminding mister straight in that there are people in the pattern and that you would appreciate it if they would abort their straight in and enter the pattern on a 45 like everyone else did. They can reply with a big F you, or they might just say sure we can enter on a 45.... I have shamed people on the radio many times without hesitation.
 

Andino

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With your FAA's recommendation of lower/tighter gyro patterns than airplanes, this can set up a gyro pilot having to either turn in front of an airplane on base, or extend the gyro's downwind. Meaning, the absence of long straight-in approaches does not completely mitigate pattern risk of disparate speed aircraft when the gyro doesn't daisy-chain follow the aircraft in front of him. There is no "one-size-fits-all" solution, which is why I believe that inter-pilot communication and the flexibility to occasionally extend downwind or perform a 360 for separation is required for safe airmanship. Merely flying box patterns hundreds of times at a local field, always making turns over the same landmarks, is rote work, not flying, and creates a sort of blindness to anything not fitting the "norm." Such pilots are often reluctant to extend downwind past their familiar reference point. (Their base and final turns would then be over strange territory, and their descent would be different. Such could rattle a tyro.)

With two small Cessnas in repetitive closed pattern, and the 340 entering the pattern on the 45, either the 152 or the Skyhawk would have had to modify their own pattern to accommodate a 110 kt downwind twin (i.e., being overtaken, and then a probable extended downwind, anyway, since they would have otherwise been simultaneously turning different bases).

What really killed all those people in Watstonville was not the straight-in approach per se, but the pilots' failure to work with each other in a safe and unambiguous fashion with the skills and mindset to work out something other than a rote 80 kt Cessna trainer pattern and thus allow for a twin doing 30+ kt faster in the pattern.
 

Abid

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Twins generally need to be 1.5 mile pattern at 1500 feet compared to a 3/4 mile ASEL pattern at 1000 feet. Gyro is 1/3 to 1/2 mile at 500 to 700 feet. This is recommended to keep sequence. Beyond that pilots need tp use common sense
 
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WaspAir

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Twins generally need to be 1.5 mile pattern at 1500 feet compared to a 3/4 mile ASEL pattern at 1000 feet. Gyro is 1/3 to 1/2 mile at 500 to 700 feet. This is keep sequence. Beyond that pilots need tp use common sense
Yes, the intent is proper spacing in time, not simple distance spacing with different speeds trying to follow each other in trail. Big fast patterns can consume as much time as small slow ones and that makes it easier to fit in.

A gyro #1 to land can be overtaken on the downwind to the outside and higher by a faster airplane #2, but their order of touchdown is retained because the gyro turns to his shorter, lower base and final earlier.
 
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Andino

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Yes, the intent is proper spacing in time, not simple distance spacing with different speeds trying to follow each other in trail. Big fast patterns can consume as much time as small slow ones and that makes it easier to fit in.

A gyro #1 to land can be overtaken on the downwind to the outside and higher by a faster airplane #2, but their order of touchdown is retained because the gyro turns to his shorter, lower base and final earlier.
You're speaking of possibilities, not inevitabilities of staggered finals. To a gyro which is ready to turn base, but wisely won't because a twin has just turned 1.5 mile final from base, that twin may have just as well been on an earlier 3 mile final as far as the gyro is concerned. Patterns are no magical solution which absolve pilots from communicating with each other and remaining flexible. Extended downwinds happen very often even without straight-in approaches being the impetus.

Since you're very familiar with KWVI, if that 152's 1-2 mile extended left-downwind for R20 were infeasible or unrealistic, I suspect you'd have said so already.
 

Abid

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You're speaking of possibilities, not inevitabilities of staggered finals. To a gyro which is ready to turn base, but wisely won't because a twin has just turned 1.5 mile final from base, that twin may have just as well been on an earlier 3 mile final as far as the gyro is concerned. Patterns are no magical solution which absolve pilots from communicating with each other and remaining flexible. Extended downwinds happen very often even without straight-in approaches being the impetus.

Since you're very familiar with KWVI, if that 152's 1-2 mile extended left-downwind for R20 were infeasible or unrealistic, I suspect you'd have said so already.

If the twin turned 1.5 mile final before the gyro that was in front of him, the twin already is in violation of the sequence and should have informed requested with gyro if he could go in front. Not doing so is considered extremely rude.
 

Andino

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If the twin turned 1.5 mile final before the gyro that was in front of him, the twin already is in violation of the sequence and should have informed requested with gyro if he could go in front. Not doing so is considered extremely rude.
Sorry, Abid, perhaps my example was unclear. "To a gyro which is ready to turn base [from downwind], but wisely won't because a twin has just turned 1.5 mile final from base, that twin may have just as well been on an earlier 3 mile final as far as the gyro is concerned." The twin has turned final before the gyro has yet to turn base, so the gyro extends his downwind.

Even given vertical and lateral separations for differing aircraft speeds (gyro, Skyhawk, and twin) on downwind and base, eventually they all must turn final. Aircraft turning final from different bases can invite conflict. Sometimes, if the pattern traffic is not heavy, and all pilots are mutually aware and communicating and agreeable, a straight-in approach may indeed be the smoothest, simplest, and safest solution in that instance. Uncommon downwinds and bases for simultaneous aircraft can be a knotty problem to solve. I'm hardly any "lobbyist" for non-pattern approaches, but am offering this mostly as food for thought. Good day.
 
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