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| Training Tips |
IN-FLIGHT FLAP RETRACTION?
The Feb. 1 "Training Tip" discussed the timing of flap deployment for landings. If flaps are deployed too much or too soon, why are you advised not to retract them to correct the situation? The risk is that retracting flaps at low altitude and low airspeed can dangerously destabilize the approach by generating temporarily high sink rates and bringing the aircraft closer to a stalled angle of attack. This question is often encountered when a student pilot adds flaps on final approach, then realizes that the new glide angle is too steep. "Never retract the flaps to correct for undershooting since that will suddenly decrease the lift and cause the airplane to sink even more rapidly," cautions Chapter 8 of the Airplane Flying Handbook .
Adding power to shallow the glide angle is the remedy of choice. If it's too late for that, go around. Remember, however, that a similar risk must be taken into account during the go-around, so follow your aircraft's recommended procedure exactly.
To help you understand the risk of retracting the flaps, consider the effect flap retraction has on stall speed, explained in AOPA Air Safety Foundation Executive Director Bruce Landsberg's instructional article on the AOPA Flight Training Web site. "If the pilot retracts the flaps too quickly, there is usually a sinking spell and sometimes a stall; so, adding just enough back pressure to keep from sinking is something else to add to the skills list. On the Beech V35 Bonanza, the stall speed increases by about 12 knots as the flaps come up. On the Cessna 172, it's around seven knots; on the Piper Arrow, it's about five knots."
Are there exceptions? One might be the unlikely case of an engine failure on final with full flaps. "Yes, the flaps can and probably should be retracted at such a time, but some pilots might have difficulty coping with the unexpected trim change and momentary increase in sink rate that would occur at such a critical time," wrote AOPA Pilot columnist Barry Schiff in a "Proficient Pilot" column discussing how and when to use full flaps.
Flaps make landings easy and accurate, but don't make a bad situation worse by improvising with their use!
| Your Partner in Training |
Should I choose a Part 61 or Part 141 school? Is there an easy mental note to use in recovering from an inadvertent spin? Are my flight training expenses tax deductible? No question is too tough or too trivial for the aviation specialists at 800/USA-AOPA. Do you have a question that you're too embarrassed to ask your flight instructor, or that must be answered quickly and you can't reach your instructor? Our specialists are available weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern time to answer all your questions.
As an AOPA Flight Training Member, you have access to all of the features within AOPA Online and AOPA Flight Training Online. Login information is available online.
| Flight Training News |
UPDATED AIRSPACE COURSE MAKES PERFECT CHECKRIDE PREP
Whether it's time to prepare for your checkride or you just want a better understanding of the complexities of airspace, the AOPA Air Safety Foundation can help with its completely revamped airspace primer. Know Before You Go: Navigating Today's Airspace presents updated and expanded information using animated 3-D graphics to help you visualize and understand different types of airspace. Practical tips, interactive flight-planning exercises, and matching games reinforce learning. The free, comprehensive course takes a little more than an hour to complete, but your progress is automatically saved so you can take a break any time.
JETBLUE PARTNERS WITH TWO TOP AVIATION UNIVERSITIES
JetBlue Airways announced Jan. 30 that it is forming a partnership with two aviation schools to recruit pilots. The Aviation University Gateway program will accept qualified candidates from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and the University of North Dakota. Participants will intern at Massachusetts-based Cape Air and flight instruct at their respective schools. They will then fly with Cape Air, a regional airline, for two years before becoming eligible for an interview at JetBlue. Additional regionals are expected to join the partnership as the program progresses, JetBlue said.
DANIEL WEBSTER SEEKS 'CAREER' FLIGHT INSTRUCTORS
Daniel Webster College in Nashua, N.H., is looking for flight instructors. Sound familiar? Yes, except for one thing: The college has apparently decided not to rely on newly graduated time-builders and is going all-out to recruit what it calls "career" flight instructors. In a news release, the college said it is offering incentives targeted toward career flight instructors, including bonuses for such things as master CFI certification, professional development, and glider instructor certification. Other sweeteners include base pay plus block pay and the ability to choose a three-, four-, or five-day work schedule. Interested candidates can visit the college's employment page, send an e-mail, or call the CFI recruiter at 603/577-6402.
CHICAGO EXECUTIVE AIRPORT TO HOST CAREER EXPO
Chicago Executive Airport in Wheeling, Ill., will host an aviation career expo aimed at introducing aviation careers to high school students on Saturday, March 8. Students can visit with industry professionals and talk to representatives from aviation schools such as Daniel Webster College, Indiana State University, Kent State University, Kishwaukee College, Lewis University, and others. Representatives from the U.S. Air Force ROTC, Army ROTC, and Marine Corps will be on hand, as will representatives from the Civil Air Patrol, The Ninety-Nines, and flight schools Palwaukee Flyers and Windy City Flyers. For more information, see the Web site.
| Inside AOPA |
LOOKING UNDERNEATH THE PAINT
Underneath every aircraft paint job are a few dents. Well, maybe not every airplane, but the majority of the general aviation fleet certainly has its share of skin flaws. Such was the case with AOPA’s 2008 Get Your Glass Archer. Before it gets a beautiful pearl white basecoat, those dents and dings had to be fixed. Learn how we did it in our latest update on AOPA Online.
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF NEW LOWER AIRCRAFT LOAN RATES
Is an airplane purchase in your future? The AOPA Aircraft Financing Program has lowered interest rates in several loan segments to make aircraft ownership more affordable. AOPA Aircraft Financing can expedite your aircraft purchase with an easy application process and quick credit decision. From light sport aircraft to very light jets or any aircraft in between, make the AOPA Aircraft Financing Program your choice for financing. With 10 years of experience, Bank of America is the preferred lender for AOPA and supports general aviation. It's easy to apply; call 800/62-PLANE and speak to one of our financing experts, or apply online. We'll even pay your AOPA membership dues on loan amounts of more than $20,000.
GIVE YOUR VALENTINE THE GIFT OF FLIGHT
If you're looking for a unique gift to give your sweetheart this Valentine's Day, consider spending your special day high above the clouds together. Many flight schools offer discounted introductory lessons, and his-and-her flying lessons are a great way to spend a day together creating new memories. See AOPA Online for a list of flight schools in your area. Share your love of flying with that special someone by signing up together for AOPA Project Pilot. If you are already a certificated pilot, you can sign up as a mentor.
HAVE YOU UPDATED YOUR AOPA MEMBER PROFILE?
To make the most of your membership and allow us to serve you better, please visit AOPA Online and update your personal member profile.
| Training Products |
ASA OFFERS 'HOODWINK' VIEW-LIMITING DEVICE
A new view-limiting device for instrument training is available from Aviation Supplies and Academics. The Hoodwink is a collapsible hood that folds to the size of a change purse and easily fits in a pocket. To unfold, simply remove it from the carrying pouch and the metal frame springs open, making the hood ready for use. The small hood resembles a baseball hat with flaps on the side to limit the pilot's view. The Hoodwink is $16.95 and may be ordered from ASA or by calling 800/272-2359.
Note: Products listed have not been evaluated by ePilot editors unless otherwise noted. AOPA assumes no responsibility for products or services listed or for claims or actions by manufacturers or vendors.
| Final Exam |
Question: My instructor has warned me not to make low-level skidding turns when turning the base to final leg. Why?
Answer: The underlying characteristic of all skidded turns is excess yaw in the direction of the turn. They are uncoordinated maneuvers. Typically, the unnecessary yaw is pilot-induced, with too much rudder applied in the direction of turn. Both the deflected rudder and the inside wing point toward the ground when skidding. Excess yaw will tend to increase the angle of bank and rate of turn. These actions alter the character of the turn. Reacting incorrectly to a skidded turn by using opposite aileron to stop the increasing bank, followed by additional back-pressure to hold the nose up, pave the way for the classic unintentional spin. A quick glance at the inclinometer will show you the quality of the turn. Flying precisely and coordinated will not only keep your skills sharp, but your passengers will also appreciate it. For additional insight review the AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Advisor, Maneuvering Flight: Hazardous to Your Health .
Got a question for our technical services staff? E-mail to [email protected] or call the Pilot Information Center, 800/872-2672. Don't forget the online archive of "Final Exam" questions and answers, searchable by keyword or topic.
| Picture Perfect |
|Looking for some really fabulous aviation photography? All the air-to-air photos and beautifully detailed ground images used by AOPA Pilot magazine over the years are yours at the click of a mouse button. Download your favorite images to use for wallpaper, send an e-postcard, or order prints online. For more details, see AOPA Online. |
| What's New at AOPA Online |
Complacency can be a flight instructor's greatest enemy, as a CFI discovered on an otherwise uneventful dual cross-country on a cold night in February. Read the complete story in the latest edition of "Never Again Online."
| Weekend Weather |
|See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Jeppesen. |
| ePilot Calendar |
UPCOMING FLYING DESTINATIONS:
Casa Grande, Ariz. The Fifth Annual Arizona Flying Circus takes place Feb. 8 through 10 at the Francisco Grande Resort. For more information, visit the Web site.
River Ranch, Fla. Lakeathon 2008 takes place Feb. 10 through 14 at River Ranch Resort (2RR). Contact Marc Rodstein, 561/483-6566, or visit the Web site.
To submit an event to the calendar or to search all events visit AOPA Online. For airport details, including FBO fuel prices, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online.
FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Baton Rouge, La., and Nashua, N.H., Feb. 16 and 17. Clinics are also scheduled in Sacramento, Calif., and Dallas, Feb. 23 and 24. For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the CFI Refresher Online.
AOPA AIR SAFETY FOUNDATION SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Henderson, Nev., Feb. 11; Northglenn, Colo., Feb. 12; and Colorado Springs, Colo., Feb. 13. The topic is "Top 5 Mistakes Pilots Make." For details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.