Short field landing technique

Paul Hamilton is one of the first persons to become a DPE (Designated Pilot Examiner) for sport pilots. As a full-time author and sport pilot expert, he writes books and produces DVD's for Aviation Supplies and Academics (ASA). Now Paul has graciously agreed to answer your questions here. Thanks Paul! For more information about Paul, please visit www.Paul-Hamilton.com and www.Sport-Pilot-Training.com.

Moderators: drseti, Paul Hamilton

Aerco
Posts: 80
Joined: Wed Aug 26, 2009 6:28 pm
Location: Corona CA

Short field landing technique

Postby Aerco » Mon Feb 28, 2011 8:06 pm

We have a discussion going in the Training section regarding the proper way to execute a short filed landing, in particular with regard to the checkride and how an examiner would like to see it done.

Several people feel that the proper way to do this is to fly the airplane in a very shallow approach, with lots of power, behind the power curve, even below the PAPI should there be one and then then cut the power to hit your target spot on the runway.

It's been stated that this is the way an examiner actually wants to see it.

This conflicts with everything I have been taught by numerous instructors. I was even warned that an examiner might fail me if I showed him/her this as a standard short field approach and landing.

Could we have your opinion as a DPE please ?
Last edited by Aerco on Wed Mar 02, 2011 10:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
"Someone already thought of that."

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 5377
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Postby drseti » Mon Feb 28, 2011 9:49 pm

Just to clarify (and I mentioned this on the other forum), the approach I teach is to come in steep (5 deg slope) and slow (5 kts below normal approach speed) with power off and full flaps. I realize I'm teaching obstacle approaches, but this is how I interpret the PTS. Mr. Hamilton, what's your preference?
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof. H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D., CFII, LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC, iRMT
AvSport of Lock Haven
fly@AvSport.org
http://AvSport.org
http://facebook.com/SportFlying

zdc

Postby zdc » Mon Feb 28, 2011 10:04 pm

drseti wrote:Just to clarify (and I mentioned this on the other forum), the approach I teach is to come in steep (5 deg slope) and slow (5 kts below normal approach speed) with power off and full flaps. I realize I'm teaching obstacle approaches, but this is how I interpret the PTS. Mr. Hamilton, what's your preference?


I'm not the examiner Aerco is looking for, but my FAA Airplane Flying Handbook [1999] says short field landings are power on approaches, pitch to adjust angle of decent, power to control airspeed.

If you are overshooting with your technique, how do you adjust?

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 5377
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Postby drseti » Mon Feb 28, 2011 10:10 pm

zdc wrote:If you are overshooting with your technique, how do you adjust?


Well, here's what I teach: If you have power, go around. If not, slip.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof. H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D., CFII, LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC, iRMT
AvSport of Lock Haven
fly@AvSport.org
http://AvSport.org
http://facebook.com/SportFlying

zdc

Postby zdc » Mon Feb 28, 2011 10:29 pm

No offense intended, but it sounds like what you are teaching is a power off accuracy approach. If you approach with power and are overshooting, it is much easier to adjust than without power.

My trusty FAA handbook also says foward slips should not be used due to improper pilot planning, but offers no reason why. The POH would also need to be consulted to see if forward slips with full flaps were allowed.

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 5377
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Postby drseti » Mon Feb 28, 2011 10:47 pm

zdc wrote:No offense intended, but it sounds like what you are teaching is a power off accuracy approach.


No offense taken, and yes, that's exactly what I'm teaching, but with the additional wrinkle of an obstacle and a short field. At least in my part of the country, the terrain is such that, in the event of an emergency landing, that's the technique which will minimize injury.

If you approach with power and are overshooting, it is much easier to adjust than without power.


Yes, without a doubt. In a true emergency landing, however, one seldom has the luxury of being able to adjust power, up or down.

My trusty FAA handbook also says forward slips should not be used due to improper pilot planning,


I agree that the best maneuver to use in the case of improper planning is the go-around. That gives you the opportunity to do better next time around the pattern. :wink:

The POH would also need to be consulted to see if forward slips with full flaps were allowed.


Obviously. It happens that in my plane (and quite a few -- but not all -- LSA primary trainers) this is allowed.

Thanks for keeping this dialog going. I'm sure we're all learning something.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof. H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D., CFII, LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC, iRMT
AvSport of Lock Haven
fly@AvSport.org
http://AvSport.org
http://facebook.com/SportFlying

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 5377
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Postby drseti » Mon Feb 28, 2011 10:50 pm

Oh, I should add that one of my students passed his checkride Saturday, and demonstrated the steep, full flaps, power-off short field landing technique. The DPE commented that he did really well on the short-field landing, so at least one examiner likes that particular technique. (I'm still anxious to hear Paul Hamilton's take on this matter.)
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof. H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D., CFII, LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC, iRMT
AvSport of Lock Haven
fly@AvSport.org
http://AvSport.org
http://facebook.com/SportFlying

zdc

Postby zdc » Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:14 pm

What you are teaching is a safe, effective way to land. All normal approaches should be made with the assumption that you could lose power at any time. However, the short field approach I am thinking of is not a normal approach. I haven't been to Alaska, but I have been to a few places where there is no room to spare on landing, and if you wait too long to go around you could be in trouble. You want the ability to adjust for an overshoot without slipping and you do not want to float.

Unless you absolutely have to use a forward slip [clear an obstacle and then land on a short rwy, engine failure and you only have one shot], I can think of a couple of reasons not to use forward slips, especially for inexperienced pilots. You are no longer on a stablized approach, extended slips could result in unporting fuel resuting in engine stoppage, cross controlled configuration.

comperini
Posts: 225
Joined: Sun Feb 24, 2008 10:37 am
Location: California

Postby comperini » Fri Mar 04, 2011 7:18 pm

zdc wrote:WUnless you absolutely have to use a forward slip [clear an obstacle and then land on a short rwy, engine failure and you only have one shot], I can think of a couple of reasons not to use forward slips, especially for inexperienced pilots. You are no longer on a stablized approach, extended slips could result in unporting fuel resuting in engine stoppage, cross controlled configuration.


A forward slip to landing is also a required PTS task (unless aircraft is incapable of performing them), so even inexperienced pilots need to know how to do them.
- Bob
COMM, CFI, DPE, Light Sport Repairman/Maintenance
http://www.sportpilotinstructor.com

User avatar
Paul Hamilton
Posts: 359
Joined: Mon May 21, 2007 2:42 pm
Location: Reno/Tahoe Nevada

Postby Paul Hamilton » Thu Mar 10, 2011 8:39 pm

It should be understood that "how to" in a checkride is a "snap shot" of the of the task as specified in the PTS referencing the FAA Airplane Flying Handbook (AFH) as the source of how to perform the task.

There are many techniques from many different instructors for many different airplanes (DIDA). But here is the most important "how to" an examiner would be required to go with directly from the PTS to FAA Airplane Flying Manual as specifically quoted on page 8-18 paragraph 2:

"The procedures for landing in a short-field or for landing
approaches over obstacles, as recommended in the
AFM/POH, should be used. A stabilized approach is
essential. [Figures 8-22 and 8-23] These procedures
generally involve the use of full flaps, and the final
approach started from an altitude of at least 500 feet
higher than the touchdown area. A wider than normal
pattern should be used so that the airplane can be
properly configured and trimmed. In the absence of
the manufacturer’s recommended approach speed, a
speed of not more than 1.3 VSO should be used. For
example, in an airplane........"


It goes on and on...... and most techniques for DIDA can be justified based on specific sentences and paragraphs from the pages on this subject. But if you read it with an open mind, most of the questions will be answered. I will say that my personal preferrecnes or techniques can be different as provided in some FAA mauuals, examiners must "go by the book" of written FAA text for the checkride.

However, if there is any question for a specific airplane for a checkride, the POH/AFM or LSA Aircraft Operating Instructions is a start.
Paul is a Sport Pilot CFI/DPE and the expert for ASA who writes the books and produces the DVD's for all pilots flying light sport aircraft.
See www.SportAviationCenter.com www.Sport-Pilot-Training.com and www.BeASportPilot.com to Paul's websites


Return to “Ask The Examiner”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest