Tuesday, June 16, 2015

N162HG 1.0 Bob

This was the first of my remedial training sessions with Bob. First, he made me calculate what 75 pounds (say) of weight do to the stall speed. We know Vs0 is 37 kias at gross, 1320 pounds. At 75 pounds less, we have:
Vs0 = sqrt((1320 - 75) / 1320) * 37 = 35.9 kias
So I am accustomed to flying it with a stall speed of 35.9 kias, and it was 37 kias during my checkride. A difference of 1.1 kias in stall speed is not enough to noticeably change the characteristics and flyability of the aircraft.

Math doesn't lie. I am convinced.

So what else happened? I know I failed because of the bounce, and specifically because the DPE had to take the controls to save us from disaster. Bob discussed with me how it would have been the right thing under these circumstances to execute a decisive go-around. If the DPE says this was a simulated pattern emergency, where we simulate loss of power, I could reply that a true power loss situation would have been survivable with (possibly minor) damage to the aircraft. If at this time the DPE still wants to fail me, then fine, but at least I'll have a fighting chance. :)

Well anyway, all that is behind us. We took off with half tanks to do pattern work at Palo Alto.

And I failed ... to reproduce any of the bad patterns I had the day of my checkride. I wondered if I was having trouble judging HAT (Height Above Touchdown) correctly. I did that fine. I wondered if I could actually execute a short field landing with the "closer" aiming point the DPE asked for. I did. I wondered if I could execute a simulated emergency short approach. I did (but see below).

I had Bob demonstrate a short field landing, from which I learned a lot (keep more power in on downwind and base, aim for the spot, fly low then stall in). I also had him demonstrate a bounce and a recovery.

I then executed a sort of gentle bounce, which I recovered from and landed, and a huge teeth-grinding bounce, from which I immediately did a go-around safely.

The one problem I had was one simulated pattern emergency where I was coming up short of the runway and had to go-around. The reason was that we had 18 knots of wind down the runway and I failed to account for that -- I did the normal thing I do when there's no wind and allowed myself to glide downwind for a while before turning. So -- check, keep that in mind for the future.

Other than that, the other simulated pattern emergency was fine; I slipped aggressively and came in at the runway threshold, and for what it's worth, the subsequent landing was a valid "short" landing in its own right. That should tell me that, in the future, if I carry a slip to the ground and recover properly, I can land pretty short.

We go to KLVK for our next lesson to see if we can repeat the performance. Wish me luck.

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