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Old 04-23-2010, 01:59 PM   #41
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Sure don't want to land with any sideways momentum in a tailwheel aircraft. They like to swap ends if you do that.
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:02 PM   #42
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I suspect the aircraft manufacturers learned it would be cheaper to build runways that would rotate to align with the wind...
In the early days of flying they didn't use runways. They used a "flying field" big flat field. They always landed into the wind. Would be nice now.
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:10 PM   #43
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They always landed into the wind. Would be nice now.
Makes sense. Flying into the wind allows you to come in at a slower speed relative to the ground and thus requires less "runway" space to complete the landing.

For example, when I was flying a Cessna 150 I'd usually be touching down right near the stall speed -- at an airspeed of roughly 50 knots, IIRC. If I were to land into a 10 knot headwind, my speed at landing relative to the ground was only 40 knots as a result. In contrast, landing with a 10 knot tailwind has you touching down at 60, meaning more risk if something goes wrong in the landing *and* a need for more runway.
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:22 PM   #44
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In the early days of flying they didn't use runways. They used a "flying field" big flat field. They always landed into the wind. Would be nice now. (quote)

There is such a field (in concrete, no less) at Converse IN. Never been there and I see from the satellite that they've put some designated runways on it now. Converse's field used to be a recurring subject of our FBO coffee corner - back in the day. See -

Converse, Indiana IN Community Profile / Miami County, IN Data
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:55 PM   #45
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Ever try to land with a tail wind? I tried once experimentally in a Cessna 172. Could not get it on the ground at all on the 3500 ft runway! Just kept floating.

Saw a guy take off downwind once. He made it over the trees, barely.
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:57 PM   #46
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In the early days of flying they didn't use runways. They used a "flying field" big flat field. They always landed into the wind. Would be nice now. (quote)

There is such a field (in concrete, no less) at Converse IN. Never been there and I see from the satellite that they've put some designated runways on it now. Converse's field used to be a recurring subject of our FBO coffee corner - back in the day. See -

Converse, Indiana IN Community Profile / Miami County, IN Data
Wow! Wonder what that is all about? There are some hangers in the way though. Must have been some Government project.
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Old 04-23-2010, 03:02 PM   #47
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Ever try to land with a tail wind? I tried once experimentally in a Cessna 172. Could not get it on the ground at all on the 3500 ft runway! Just kept floating.
Once, during some confusion at the airstrip. The main runways were 9 and 27, and on this day the winds were such that when I took off, the winds dictated using 9 though it was almost a pure crosswind of maybe 5-6 knots. While I was up, they shifted such that landing on 9 had a decent tailwind. This runway was also about 3500' long and yeah, I didn't get it down until almost halfway down the strip. I was really close to initiating a go-around because of running out of runway when I finally got it down. And this was as a student pilot on my third-ever solo.

A few minutes later when I got the plane back to the FBO, they switched the active to 27...
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Old 04-23-2010, 03:25 PM   #48
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Ever try to land with a tail wind? I tried once experimentally in a Cessna 172. Could not get it on the ground at all on the 3500 ft runway! Just kept floating.

Saw a guy take off downwind once. He made it over the trees, barely.
One of my flight instructors had flown for (I think) the Airforce. He told the story of taking off with a slight tailwind at (I think - 40+ years, etc.) Albuquerque. Apparently, he would have had to taxi the length of the runway to get to headwind conditions and decided he could take off downwind. He was flying a fighter or fighter bomber at the time. The field was 13K, but it was at 5K elevation. 500 feet from the end, facing fences or buildings, he was still on the ground. His last hope was to dump fuel - which would probably have led to a court marshal. He made it over the obstacles with just feet to spare - his finger still on the unused fuel-dump button. His take away message was never to take short cuts. The cost of failure is too high.
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Old 04-23-2010, 04:02 PM   #49
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Taking off heavy on a hot day at a high-altitude airfield, even with a 2+ mile-long runway was a challenge in the KC-135 before they replaced the old J-57 water injection engines. I can remember looking at all the pre-flight planning calculations saying we were "good to go" yet seeing very little in front of us but the overrun before the old sow finally got airborne.

Then when the water ran out the loss of thrust was like losing an engine.*

Yeah, it's time....





* From Wikipedia: "All KC-135s were originally equipped with Pratt & Whitney J-57-P-59W turbojet engines which produced 10,000 lbf of thrust dry, and approximately 13,000 lbf of thrust wet. Wet thrust is achieved through the use of water injection on takeoff. 670 gallons of water are injected into the engines over the course of two and a half minutes. This water allows a second set of fuel injectors to activate without melting the turbine buckets. The water turns to steam and is ejected out the rear of the engine, increasing the mass through the engine and increasing thrust. The engine runs a little hotter, with more engine noise."
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Old 04-23-2010, 05:10 PM   #50
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Taking off heavy on a hot day at a high-altitude airfield, even with a 2+ mile-long runway was a challenge in the KC-135 before they replaced the old J-57 water injection engines. I can remember looking at all the pre-flight planning calculations saying we were "good to go" yet seeing very little in front of us but the overrun before the old sow finally got airborne.
IIRC, I was told you guys were the only crews in the USAF who took off in situations in which your critical engine failure speed was higher than refusal speed. This meant there was a point during the takeoff roll when, if you lost an engine, you could neither take off in the remaining runway nor stop in the remaining runway.
That's high adventure. "Prepare to engage localizer antenna." I'm sure it wasn't done all the time, but when the klaxon sounds . . .

It's time . . .

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Old 04-23-2010, 07:06 PM   #51
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I saw an IL-76 take off at Oshkosh it wasn't nearly that dramatic.
LOL, only Aussie's air traffic controllers would joke about having enough film, to "film the crash."
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Old 04-23-2010, 09:25 PM   #52
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IIRC, I was told you guys were the only crews in the USAF who took off in situations in which your critical engine failure speed was higher than refusal speed. This meant there was a point during the takeoff roll when, if you lost an engine, you could neither take off in the remaining runway nor stop in the remaining runway.
That's high adventure. "Prepare to engage localizer antenna." I'm sure it wasn't done all the time, but when the klaxon sounds . . .
It wasn't something we practiced as we would monitor the high temp for the day and reduce the fuel load accordingly. Of course that meant if the "real thing" happened the remaining fuel we had after offloading the fuel needed for the the B-52 to get to target wouldn't be enough to make it to any airfield. Since we didn't expect any usable runway to survive, it wasn't much of an issue at the time.
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Old 04-23-2010, 09:49 PM   #53
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I Since we didn't expect any usable runway to survive, it wasn't much of an issue at the time.
I felt nearly the same way on a boomer: "So we've launched 16 and are still here. Now what do we do??"

Sorry for the hijack, all you pilots.
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Old 04-23-2010, 09:53 PM   #54
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I felt nearly the same way on a boomer: "So we've launched 16 and are still here. Now what do we do??"
Set sail for Tahiti? No strategic target for either side there, was it?
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Old 04-23-2010, 09:57 PM   #55
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No apology necessary. It was fatalistic yet very realistic, wasn't it. Kids these days don't understand what it was like to live during the Cold War and the MAD doctrine.

Yeah, I know. Cue the Four Yorkshiremen again...
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Old 04-23-2010, 10:15 PM   #56
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I never actually expected to survive a full strategic launch. After the first 3 or 4, they pretty much know exactly where you are.
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Old 04-23-2010, 10:58 PM   #57
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I felt nearly the same way on a boomer: "So we've launched 16 and are still here. Now what do we do??"
Clear datum at the max secure speed of eight knots!

I was always a little skeptical of that "get down to test depth where their torpedoes will burn too much fuel to follow for very long"...
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:40 PM   #58
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Never have been behind a stick, but it looks to me like these boys have to be REALLY good.
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Old 04-24-2010, 12:27 AM   #59
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One of my instructors told me that before you ever did anything questionable you shoud ask yourself:

"How is this going to sound at the NTSB hearing?"
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Old 04-24-2010, 05:34 AM   #60
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In the early days of flying they didn't use runways. They used a "flying field" big flat field. They always landed into the wind. Would be nice now. (quote)

There is such a field (in concrete, no less) at Converse IN. Never been there and I see from the satellite that they've put some designated runways on it now. Converse's field used to be a recurring subject of our FBO coffee corner - back in the day. See -

Converse, Indiana IN Community Profile / Miami County, IN Data
Very Cool! But how does the pilot keep the plane "straight" during takeoffs/landings if he / she doesn't use the designated part? Do they just "eyeball" it?
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