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Glider instructor designs cockpit simulatorGlider instructor designs cockpit simulator

The author of a series of glider instructional materials has designed a cockpit simulator with integrated flight controls to enable glider pilots to train at home, at a glider club, or at a commercial operation.
The Mach 0.1 glider cockpit simulator designed by instructor Russell Holtz includes a stick, adjustable rudder pedals, spoilers, wheel brake, landing gear, trim, and a tow release handle. Photo courtesy of Russell Holtz.

The author of a series of glider instructional materials has designed a cockpit simulator with integrated flight controls to enable glider pilots to train at home or at a glider club or commercial operation.

The Mach 0.1 glider cockpit simulator includes a stick, adjustable rudder pedals, spoilers, wheel brake, landing gear, trim, and a tow release handle. A flight instructor can use the included remote control to simulate a rope break or an air brake failure in both open and closed positions. The Mach 0.1 is designed to be used with the Condor soaring simulator software program.

Russell Holtz, author of Flight Training Manual for Gliders andGlider Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge, said a commercial glider operation can increase its revenue by training multiple students at once using a single flight instructor, or by providing evening or winter courses when actual flying would be impossible. The simulator could be rented to students to practice by themselves before or after a lesson, he said.

Holtz said lessons in Condor correspond to material in the Flight Training Manual for Gliders. The book and simulator are sold on his Gliderbooks.com website. Free simulator lesson plans can be downloaded from the website.

A benefit of training with a flight simulator is that you can break maneuvers into tiny pieces, Holtz said. For example, new glider students typically have difficulty keeping a glider rolling straight down the runway after a landing, he said. The Mach 0.1 can be set up with a scenario that places the student in the glider, on the ground, just after the glider has touched down. “The student can then practice a rollout before they ever do a landing,” he said. When the student progresses to landings, using a simulator, the student can perform 20 landings in the time it would take for one pattern tow in a real glider, he said.

Similarly, emergency procedures such as recovering from a rope break at a low altitude can be practiced safely in a simulator, Holtz said.

The Mach 0.1 simulated glider cockpit sells for $1,899 and does not include computer, monitor, keyboard, mouse, or simulator software.

Jill W. Tallman

Jill W. Tallman

AOPA Technical Editor
AOPA Technical Editor Jill W. Tallman is an instrument-rated private pilot who owns a Piper Cherokee 140.
Topics: Pilot Training and Certification

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