Ray Tackett
(Top Gun)
05/21/09 01:02 PM
Re: Student Pilot - Landing Problems

Hi Roger,

Welcome to Avsig!

I show my students the similarity between the landing flare and the entry to slow flight or a power-off stall. In the air, you can practice slowing to a power-off stall, maintaining altitude perfectly (keep raising the nose to maintain lift) until the airplane won't do it any more. Of course, you stay pointed at some visual reference on the horizon the whole time, too.

In the air, you'll pitch down and recover. One foot above the runway, you'll land. The pitch-down part of the stall doesn't happen right away. You mush down tail-first for a bit until you develop a little vertical speed. With a runway just below your wheels, there's no room to develop much vertical speed.

That leaves the problem of judging your flare height, which depends upon airspeed, descent rate, and airplane performance. The route to the right flare height is the same as the route to Carnegie Hall -- practice. It helps if you're consistent about your approach angle and airspeed at first. If each approach is the same, the flare looks and feels the same. Later on, you can experiment with the effects of being flat, steep, fast, or slow, strong headwind, no wind, etc.


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