02 September 2010

Soft- and Short-field Takeoffs/Landings

Today I learned soft-field and short-field takeoffs and landings.  The soft-field takeoff is strange and fun:  full elevator is used to pick the nosewheel off of the ground as soon as possible during the takeoff roll.  The main wheels leave the ground a very low speed and the nose must be pitched down for the airplane to accelerate in ground effect until it can climb.  It was unnatural to pitch the nose down during takeoff.  I also needed full right rudder to keep the airplane straight once the nosewheel left the runway, which makes sense because the rudder is not terribly effective at that low speed.

I definitely need more practice with these techniques, but it was a fun morning.  My next flight is another pattern solo, with no CFI required. 

Flight time this lesson: 1.3 hours dual
Total time to date: 15.0 hours dual, 0.5 hours solo

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