Flying technique

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We expect the new 2012 version of the Glider Flying Handbook is now being shipped.

Some of you will be pleased with a last minute change to the original drawing depicting boxing the wake.
The multi-flawed FAA version shows a glider flying around the towplane rather than around the wake, which results in the glider being well
above the wake and therefore lifiting on the tail of the towplane.

We replaced this drawing with one showing the glider correctly flying around the towplane wake. It is never correct for the glider to fly
higher than immediately above the towplane propwash, nor further than immediately below for fear of exceeding the limits of the towplane's
elevator authority.

Did a local check ride with a low time commercial pilot the other day. He was having some difficulty during the tow with the strong
turbulence. I told him if he stopped moving the controls, the turbulence would stop. The air was smooth.

One of the common errors is for pilots to start the launch with the control stick in a foward position. This practice comes from gliders
such as the Schweizer 2-33 with the tow hitch well below the nese of the glider. When the tow plane surges forward, the nose comes up and
the tail hits the ground. Holding the stick forward does nothing to stop this, but many pilots are trained (incorrectly) this way.

The tow pilot needs to be trained to accelerate less quickly.

Anyway, at the start of the launch, the glider control stick should normally be held in a neutral position ( usually very slightly aft of
neutral) and the glider will make a smooth takeoff with no further application of elevator. This prevents PIOs and works on all normally
type certificated aircraft flown within weight and balance limitations.

Tom Knauff

 

 

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