|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||0601 To 1200|
|Locale Reference||airport : zzz.airport|
|Controlling Facilities||tower : zzz.tower|
|Operator||general aviation : instructional|
|Make Model Name||Cessna 170|
|Operating Under FAR Part||Part 91|
|Flight Phase||climbout : takeoff|
|Function||instruction : instructor|
|Qualification||pilot : instrument|
pilot : multi engine
pilot : cfi
pilot : commercial
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 150|
flight time total : 5000
flight time type : 30
|Function||instruction : trainee|
aircraft equipment problem : critical
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
other flight crewb
|Resolutory Action||none taken : insufficient time|
Flight Crew Human Performance
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
I was invited to fly with a student who has a C170. He has owned and flown the airplane for yrs; but had not flown much in the past 2 yrs because: 1) he had gndlooped it himself; and 2) after it came out from the shop his instructor gndlooped it. He came to me for further instruction. He said he had never felt comfortable with wheel lndgs. We flew for many hours getting him comfortable in the airplane and also teaching him wheel lndgs. After many flts his skills were better than they had been when he started; all he was lacking was confidence. So I continued to fly with him for moral support and to keep building his confidence. His skills got to the point where I would simply remind him periodically to make sure his toes were off the brakes; or to keep looking down the runway. On the day of this incident; he had invited me to go get breakfast with him and a friend. There was about a 7-8 KT crosswind component from the left. I suggested we stay in the pattern for a few touch-and-goes before departing; because he had not flown in a few weeks. On the first takeoff; I had to remind him to start with ailerons full into the wind. Other than that; the takeoff was textbook. He raised the tail; kept it straight while rolling on the mains; lifted the right main; then the left main; remained in ground effect until reaching vy; then climbed out. The landing was also a textbook wheel landing -- he stabilized the airplane in a level attitude just inches off the runway; touched the left main; came forward on the stick; touched the right main; idled power; and slowed. With the crosswind he was focusing intently on the rudder work; and as he set the tail down he went ailerons neutral. Again; I reminded him to put ailerons into the wind; as we rolled to a stop. He kept ailerons into the wind as we began our takeoff roll; but this time as he raised the tail he went neutral with the ailerons. As the tail came up the airplane began to weathervane to the left; and instead of adding rudder he went full aileron to the right (away from the wind!) of course this made things much worse. I said 'right rudder!' and he was adding it but then he pulled power and let go of everything while the nose was swinging back to the right. I said 'my plane;' but unfortunately; I had not been on the controls; so when I took it; it was already quite out of control. I tried to stop the swerving but with a 200+ pound passenger in the back seat it had a lot of momentum. I briefly added power to help make the tail more effective. This helped; but with the tail on the ground and moving at a slow speed; I decided it would be safer to be slowing down than speeding up. So I idled power and tried to keep it straight but by this time the turn had tightened up and we gndlooped to the left. Although we never left the runway we did drag a wingtip and the horizontal stabilizer. Contributing factors: crosswind. The crosswind was only 7 or 8 KTS; but it did contribute to the initial loss of control; which was a yaw into the wind when he lifted the tail. Backseat passenger: while well within center of gravity; the aft center of gravity did contribute. Primacy: unfortunately; the pilot's initial reaction when the nose yawed left was to move ailerons right; initially with no rudder input. This habit of 'driving the airplane like a car' is common among tricycle gear pilots. I was very surprised to see it in this pilot; who had learned in tricycle gear but had flown tailwheel for at least the past 100 hours. Complacency: I had landed this airplane in 20 KT direct xwinds; and had seen this pilot do lndgs in 10 KT and 15 KT xwinds in this plane. He had just landed in the 7-8 KT crosswind. I had been on so many flts with him (doing touch-and-goes) that were uneventful that I very much trusted his skills. Therefore; when I tried to save it; things had already gotten far out of control. Lesson learned: as an instructor; you can never be 'along for the ride.' even though the pilot had admitted several flts ago that he could go by himself; he just 'didn't feel comfortable going alone just yet.' so I continued to go with him and as he continued to improve ibecame more of a passenger and less of an instructor. In hindsight; I should have insisted that we: 1) didn't take a passenger; 2) used the crosswind runway; and 3) that I stay close on the controls.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: A C170 GNDLOOPED WHEN THE PLT USED IMPROPER XWIND TECHNIQUE AND THE INSTRUCTOR WAS SLOW TO ASSUME CTL.
Narrative: I WAS INVITED TO FLY WITH A STUDENT WHO HAS A C170. HE HAS OWNED AND FLOWN THE AIRPLANE FOR YRS; BUT HAD NOT FLOWN MUCH IN THE PAST 2 YRS BECAUSE: 1) HE HAD GNDLOOPED IT HIMSELF; AND 2) AFTER IT CAME OUT FROM THE SHOP HIS INSTRUCTOR GNDLOOPED IT. HE CAME TO ME FOR FURTHER INSTRUCTION. HE SAID HE HAD NEVER FELT COMFORTABLE WITH WHEEL LNDGS. WE FLEW FOR MANY HRS GETTING HIM COMFORTABLE IN THE AIRPLANE AND ALSO TEACHING HIM WHEEL LNDGS. AFTER MANY FLTS HIS SKILLS WERE BETTER THAN THEY HAD BEEN WHEN HE STARTED; ALL HE WAS LACKING WAS CONFIDENCE. SO I CONTINUED TO FLY WITH HIM FOR MORAL SUPPORT AND TO KEEP BUILDING HIS CONFIDENCE. HIS SKILLS GOT TO THE POINT WHERE I WOULD SIMPLY REMIND HIM PERIODICALLY TO MAKE SURE HIS TOES WERE OFF THE BRAKES; OR TO KEEP LOOKING DOWN THE RWY. ON THE DAY OF THIS INCIDENT; HE HAD INVITED ME TO GO GET BREAKFAST WITH HIM AND A FRIEND. THERE WAS ABOUT A 7-8 KT XWIND COMPONENT FROM THE L. I SUGGESTED WE STAY IN THE PATTERN FOR A FEW TOUCH-AND-GOES BEFORE DEPARTING; BECAUSE HE HAD NOT FLOWN IN A FEW WKS. ON THE FIRST TKOF; I HAD TO REMIND HIM TO START WITH AILERONS FULL INTO THE WIND. OTHER THAN THAT; THE TKOF WAS TEXTBOOK. HE RAISED THE TAIL; KEPT IT STRAIGHT WHILE ROLLING ON THE MAINS; LIFTED THE R MAIN; THEN THE L MAIN; REMAINED IN GND EFFECT UNTIL REACHING VY; THEN CLBED OUT. THE LNDG WAS ALSO A TEXTBOOK WHEEL LNDG -- HE STABILIZED THE AIRPLANE IN A LEVEL ATTITUDE JUST INCHES OFF THE RWY; TOUCHED THE L MAIN; CAME FORWARD ON THE STICK; TOUCHED THE R MAIN; IDLED PWR; AND SLOWED. WITH THE XWIND HE WAS FOCUSING INTENTLY ON THE RUDDER WORK; AND AS HE SET THE TAIL DOWN HE WENT AILERONS NEUTRAL. AGAIN; I REMINDED HIM TO PUT AILERONS INTO THE WIND; AS WE ROLLED TO A STOP. HE KEPT AILERONS INTO THE WIND AS WE BEGAN OUR TKOF ROLL; BUT THIS TIME AS HE RAISED THE TAIL HE WENT NEUTRAL WITH THE AILERONS. AS THE TAIL CAME UP THE AIRPLANE BEGAN TO WEATHERVANE TO THE L; AND INSTEAD OF ADDING RUDDER HE WENT FULL AILERON TO THE R (AWAY FROM THE WIND!) OF COURSE THIS MADE THINGS MUCH WORSE. I SAID 'R RUDDER!' AND HE WAS ADDING IT BUT THEN HE PULLED PWR AND LET GO OF EVERYTHING WHILE THE NOSE WAS SWINGING BACK TO THE R. I SAID 'MY PLANE;' BUT UNFORTUNATELY; I HAD NOT BEEN ON THE CTLS; SO WHEN I TOOK IT; IT WAS ALREADY QUITE OUT OF CTL. I TRIED TO STOP THE SWERVING BUT WITH A 200+ LB PAX IN THE BACK SEAT IT HAD A LOT OF MOMENTUM. I BRIEFLY ADDED PWR TO HELP MAKE THE TAIL MORE EFFECTIVE. THIS HELPED; BUT WITH THE TAIL ON THE GND AND MOVING AT A SLOW SPD; I DECIDED IT WOULD BE SAFER TO BE SLOWING DOWN THAN SPEEDING UP. SO I IDLED PWR AND TRIED TO KEEP IT STRAIGHT BUT BY THIS TIME THE TURN HAD TIGHTENED UP AND WE GNDLOOPED TO THE L. ALTHOUGH WE NEVER LEFT THE RWY WE DID DRAG A WINGTIP AND THE HORIZ STABILIZER. CONTRIBUTING FACTORS: XWIND. THE XWIND WAS ONLY 7 OR 8 KTS; BUT IT DID CONTRIBUTE TO THE INITIAL LOSS OF CTL; WHICH WAS A YAW INTO THE WIND WHEN HE LIFTED THE TAIL. BACKSEAT PAX: WHILE WELL WITHIN CTR OF GRAVITY; THE AFT CTR OF GRAVITY DID CONTRIBUTE. PRIMACY: UNFORTUNATELY; THE PLT'S INITIAL REACTION WHEN THE NOSE YAWED L WAS TO MOVE AILERONS R; INITIALLY WITH NO RUDDER INPUT. THIS HABIT OF 'DRIVING THE AIRPLANE LIKE A CAR' IS COMMON AMONG TRICYCLE GEAR PLTS. I WAS VERY SURPRISED TO SEE IT IN THIS PLT; WHO HAD LEARNED IN TRICYCLE GEAR BUT HAD FLOWN TAILWHEEL FOR AT LEAST THE PAST 100 HRS. COMPLACENCY: I HAD LANDED THIS AIRPLANE IN 20 KT DIRECT XWINDS; AND HAD SEEN THIS PLT DO LNDGS IN 10 KT AND 15 KT XWINDS IN THIS PLANE. HE HAD JUST LANDED IN THE 7-8 KT XWIND. I HAD BEEN ON SO MANY FLTS WITH HIM (DOING TOUCH-AND-GOES) THAT WERE UNEVENTFUL THAT I VERY MUCH TRUSTED HIS SKILLS. THEREFORE; WHEN I TRIED TO SAVE IT; THINGS HAD ALREADY GOTTEN FAR OUT OF CTL. LESSON LEARNED: AS AN INSTRUCTOR; YOU CAN NEVER BE 'ALONG FOR THE RIDE.' EVEN THOUGH THE PLT HAD ADMITTED SEVERAL FLTS AGO THAT HE COULD GO BY HIMSELF; HE JUST 'DIDN'T FEEL COMFORTABLE GOING ALONE JUST YET.' SO I CONTINUED TO GO WITH HIM AND AS HE CONTINUED TO IMPROVE IBECAME MORE OF A PAX AND LESS OF AN INSTRUCTOR. IN HINDSIGHT; I SHOULD HAVE INSISTED THAT WE: 1) DIDN'T TAKE A PAX; 2) USED THE XWIND RWY; AND 3) THAT I STAY CLOSE ON THE CTLS.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of January 2009 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.