Backlinking through 5 Tips for the Circuit

Five Tips For Flying The Circuit
One place every student spends time in the circuit.PSTAR The circuit is set routine that fliers use so that they can keep traffic separation and make the lives of air traffic controllers simpler. Everybody does the circuit at a particular airport the same way, so all the airmen know where everyone ought to be.

There are methods and protocols that are rather standardized. Usually the circuit is a left hand one, meaning the pilots turn left from one leg to the other, but now and then they are right hand circuits.

The circuit is made up of five parts: the take off leg, the crosswind leg, the downwind leg, the base leg and the final leg. At times the last two legs are called the approach legs.

The take off leg begins on the runway and continues until the turn out, which is most often at 500 feet AGL. A left turn brings crosswind leg. With some planes, like a 170, you climb to one thousand feet above ground level through the crosswind. With others, like a 150, that doesn`t ascend as well, you may commence the turn at eight hundred feet AGL. bush pilot In any event, circuit height is commonly 1000 feet above ground level, and you`d want to arrive at circuit height as soon as you`re ready to turn into the downwind. If you turn at 800 feet above ground level you obviously will have to perform a climbing turn.

The downwind receives its name because we land into the wind. An additional way of saying into the wind is upwind. The converse of upwind (which is the way you`re flying) is downwind, and so the name.

The downwind is the leg during which you do the pre-landing checks and make your call to ATC for clearance. Once you`ve finished the turn from crosswind to downwind take a look at your spacing from the airstrip, make certain you`re flying parallel to it, establish yourself in straight and level flight, and then quickly get on the checks. The sooner you perform this the more time you`ll have to make your call for the clearance and search for traffic. That`s tip number one. Get into straight and level flight quickly, look at your position in relation to the runway and carry out the checks. Be prompt, but be consistent each time.

Once you`ve obtained landing clearance from ATC you can start getting ready for the turn to base. The time to turn is when the end of the landing strip is at a forty five degree angle from a point in the center of the rear wing root and the stabilizer.

You have to slow down to go down, meaning you have to arrive at your approach speed and pitch immediately. To do this you will want to attempt to perform every part precisely the same way each time. You have a bit of flexibility in the order, but usually you`ll reduce the throttle first. Pick a particular RPM and pin the needle right on it. As you make it into the white arc that allows you to apply flaps you can either apply them in stages or set them to 20 degrees immediately. The key point is to be consistent each and every time.

If you don’t get into in the white arc right chilcotin airstripsaway you can initiate the turn. This bleeds off power and will get you in the white arc. Then you can apply the flaps. Again, apply them in stages, or apply them all at once, but be consistent. That`s tip two – consistency.

If you haven`t turned yet, do so now(assuming you`ve made your call to ATC, received a clearance and are clear of traffic).

When you lower power your nose will drop and you`ll have to adjust the yoke to maintain the desirable attitude. When you add the flaps the nose will go up, and you`ll have to adjust again. You can trim the airplane each time. Trimming makes it easier to fly and will allow you to concentrate on other things, like rate of descent. You should be descending at four hundred to five hundred feet per minute. The third tip is to confirm your target RPM, your approach speed, and your rate of descent. Get them set up at the earliest opportunity during the base leg.

A good approach makes for good landings. Proper approach speed, power and descent rate will put you on a very good approach, and if you do every thing consistently you`ll have consistently better chances of setting up a good approach. At the moment on the base leg you will need to look at the landing strip to come to a decision when you will turn to final. Consistency takes hold here once more: I like to commence the turn when the landing strip has passed the pitot tube and is almost at the strut. You might settle on a different time, but be consistent. If the end of your turn puts you in line with the runway you`re getting it done accurately.

All that remains is to stay on the glide path all the way down and land. If you`ve done everything the right way and consistently you should have no problem.

The only fly in the ointment is that loading conditions, wind and temperature change every time we take wing. Being consistent with the inputs from flight to flight won`t get you to the same point on the strip every time because your inputs are only part of the equation. You have to
chilcotin airstrips compensate for ambient conditions. And here is the fourth tip: when you’re consistent with your inputs you`ve set up a consistent standard. You can now adjust for wind, temperature or loading to stay on the the best glide path. In fact, you will almost always have to make adjustments. The tip is that you really should be aware that you`re adjusting from a point that you established in the first place, not just guessing what you ought to do based on how things look.

The final tip is fairly easy, but it took me some time to realise it and put it into practice. We fly circuits for practice, and we do it repetitively. It makes sense that if you`ve performed everything consistently and you`re high on your first approach you can resolve it on the next attempt by extending your downwind a little bit, or reducing the throttle more. And that`s tip 5: if the last approach wasn`t suitable, make the logical adjustments to fix it on the succeeding one. You’re the pilot in command, after all.


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