Lesson 8. Circuits III

Date: 15/10/2016
Purpose of Flight: Circuit training
Aircraft: VH-KEP
Flight time: 1.0

Airport: Hervey Bay Aerodrome
Instructor: MM , Briefing time (hr): 0
Time to take off: 8:15 Runway: 11
Time to land: 9:15  Runway: 11          Total Engine time: 1.0 Approx. Fuel ____
Wx: Wx at aerodrome (Approx time of AWIS call 8:00): Cloud scattered 5500, Wind Direction 120 N, Wind Strength 9 kts , Temp 21oC, Dewpoint 11, Rainfall last 10 mins nil, Wind types -, Visibility >10km,  Humidity 55%, QNH 1021,

Changes in Wx Conditions, BOM daily wx obs: Temps Min (°C) 16.3, Max (°C) __, Rain (mm) 2, Evap __, Sun __, [[Max daily wind gust: Dir __, Spd (km/h) __, Time (local) __]] [[9:00am record: Temp (°C) 18.3, RH (%) 88, Cloud 7, Dir S, Spd (km/h) 13, MSLP (hPA) 1019.9]], [[3:00pm record: Temp (°C) __, RH (%) __, Cloud __ , Dir __, Spd (km/h) __, MSLP (hPa) __]] http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/IDCJDW4056.latest.shtml
Wind 120 N 9 kts, QNH 1021 HpA, Temp 21, Cloud scattered at 5500, visibility >10k dewpoint 11, humidity 55%, rainfall nil


TAF YHBA 141621Z 1418/1506

15012KT 9999 SCT040

FM142300 12018KT 9999 SCT045


T 17 19 23 23 Q 1020 1021 1021 1020

METAR YHBA 142100Z AUTO 13009KT 9999 // SCT047 BKN055 21/11 Q1021

RMK RF00.0/000.4



Goals: Review previous lesson and optimise operation of aircraft… Downwind checks, operating minimums (1/2 balance ball, +10/10 heading, Vref +5 kts -0 kts, +150 ft of set altitudes, main wheels first), maintain consistent tracking, pre-landing checklist, emergency engine cut off routine practice

Briefing discussion: Home-study on circuits and own notes, no formal briefing necessary as one was due to practice the circuit pattern and improve on skills.

Tasks: pre-flight checks, oil and fuel check, wheel chocks, start-up procedures and checks, radios, take-off, climbing, descent, turns, preflight briefing (re-aborted take-off procedure), touch’n’go x5 + final landing.

Notes: No damage to aircraft, 105-110 L of fuel onboard with 55-60 L in right wing, 5-6 circuits today, radio calls have improved. Strong headwind off the runway above 100ft (trees protecting the airstrip), noticeably forceful 15 kts pushing off course. Made adjustments by turning 5-10 degrees into the wind on crosswind. Initial landing was flat but otherwise the approach went well. Improvements were made on base and final for dealing with the wind and turbulence. Now 3 hrs into circuits having found a rhythm of doing things it becomes much more natural to keep ahead of the plane, make appropriate radio calls and especially listen out for other aircraft. Perceptual awareness is improving also. One noticed that the airfield has 3 windsocks at different parts of the runway. Wind fluctuated at etiher end of the runway and it was possible to start anticipating a sudden change in wind direction by keeping an eye on the windsock.
Spacing of other aircraft was managed.
One emergency engine-out practiced at 500 ft on 4th circuit – nose down, anticipated field, flap as required and power on to recover.
Instructor believes my skills are on track to anticipate a solo within 3-4 more circuit training flights. Typically it takes 6-7 circuit training flights before the instructor believes it is appropriate to let the student go solo… if anything major comes up, or pilot requires more time practicing a particular aspect that time is extended. As this completes my 3rd hr of circuits I can expect that we’ll start to practice more emergency situations and failures e.g. flapless approach and landing, engine out landing etc.

Look forward to next week!

Radios: YHBA AWIS 134.9, general


Flight 6. Circuits

Date: 1/10/2016
Purpose of Fight: Circuits I
Flight Time (hrs): 1.1
Aircraft: VH-KEP PA28

Airport: Hervey Bay Aerodrome
Instructor: E.Barrett , Briefing time (hr): 1
Time to take off: 9:29 Runway: 29
Time to land: 10:35 Runway: 29          Total Engine time: 1.1 Approx. Fuel ____
Wx: Wx at aerodrome: Cloud clear <1200, Wind Direction 220 N, Wind Strength 6kts , Dewpoint 7, Rainfall 0, Wind types -, Visibility >10km,  Humidity 44%, QNH 1014, Changes in Wx Conditions, BOM daily wx obs: Temps Min (°C) 7.2, Max (°C) __, Rain (mm) 0.2, Evap __, Sun __, [[Max daily wind gust: Dir __, Spd (km/h) __, Time (local) __]] [[9:00am record: Temp (°C) 22.2, RH (%) 34, Cloud -, Dir SW, Spd (km/h) 11, MSLP (hPA) 1014.9]], [[3:00pm record: Temp (°C) __, RH (%) __, Cloud __ , Dir __, Spd (km/h) __, MSLP (hPa) __]] http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/IDCJDW4056.latest.shtml
TAF YHBA 302124Z 0100/0112


FM010200 35010KT CAVOK


T 23 25 24 20 Q 1014 1012 1011 1013

METAR YHBA 010330Z AUTO 36011KT 9999 // NCD 25/07 Q1012

RMK RF00.0/000.0

Goals: Downwind checks, operating tolerances (1/2 balance ball??, +10/10 heading, Vref +5 kts -0 kts, +150 ft of set altitudes, main wheels first), maintain consistent tracking, pre-landing checklist

Briefing discussion: Basic circuit pattern (i.e. upwind, crosswind, downwind, base, final), radio calls associated and traffic control in uncontrolled airspace, theory of taking off into wind (decreases runway distance, increases angle of climb), discussed slipstream effect, propeller weight component, and effect of torque causing adverse yaw on take off especially at low speeds… effect of increased weight à increased runway length, atmospheric hot high and human conditions à reduced lift. Weather cocking-effect of crosswinds (common because very rarely wind will effectively be in the absolute direction of the runway). All circuit direction is to the LHS unless stated otherwise (usually is the case when a town or no-fly zone exits to the left airspace).
Always use the runway for a fixed reference point!
Stages of the circuit;

  • Upwind; maintain +/- 5 deg from the runway, no flaps in KEP, maintain 80 kt climb, climb to 300 ft & turn off the fuel pump, climb to 500 ft (clearance minimum) and enter 90 deg turn (R1) into x-wind.
  • Crosswind leg (X-wind); continue climbing to 1000 ft, throttle off to 2300-2400, straight and level 90 deg turn into downwind.
  • Downwind; adjust to be parallel to runway (keep runway just above wing), towards the end of the downwind leg (2/3 point) commence pre-landing checks (BUMFISH)
    B- Breaks working (i.e. no obvious leak)
    U- Undercarriage down
    M-Mixture – set to rich
    F- Fuel selector and pump ON
    I- instruments Temp and Pressure, Directional Gyro set to parallel with runway (aligned with compass in straight and level)
    S- Switces/Lights
    H- Hatches & Harnesses checkCalls for downwind and approach…
  • Base; extend flaps progressively 10, 20, 800 ft check adjust attitude and speed (70-75kts) Trim.
  • Final; Aimpoint (adjust and keep airstrip numbers in the aiming point), airspeed (fast/slow), aspect (high/low)

Landing; once over the airstrip, reduce power, use backpressure to keep nose from dipping; avoid ballooning or bounce… avoid wing-dip by monitoring wind direction and avoid over controlling the aircraft…

Touch&Go – retract flaps, full power, take off as usual.

Tasks: pre-flight checks, oil and fuel check, wheel chocks, start-up procedures and checks, radios, take-off, climbing, descent, turns, preflight briefing (re-aborted take-off procedure), touch’n’go x8, final landing.
New instructor, very insightful and experienced. Engaged and ready to discuss several aspects of the flight and coaching through each leg.

New engine in KEP, felt like the engine had more power than last time, and was much more responsive to throttle changes.

Initial take-off wheelspin can be difficult control the aircraft therefore aim to rotate at 60 kts as advised. Good application of rudder and aileron to control for adverse yaw. Good control of turns, height and speed using all visual indicators. Much more competent with the trim. 7-8 touch’n’go’s logged – initial 2 attempts on final were shaky and over controlled but improved with better use of throttle and rudder. Base-leg steadily improved by maintaining consistent tracking and consistent climbing during x-wind. Middle 5th and 6th base legs were high but corrected. Airspeed in base was adjusted by engaging flaps early, sometimes even at the end of downwind prior to base turn. Radio calls improving, remember to mention the aircraft and listen out for other aircraft before transmitting. Instructor handled radio calls on occasion when task saturated. Helicopter on base leg during one circuit, well managed and kept clear. CenterPoint landings were achieved most times however not without significant ballooning with late transition point or being too aggressive (or both). Learn to moderate the transition and engage with power out.
Final circuit and full-stop landing was good, wind was picking up towards the end of the circuit training so it became more difficult to stay on centreline. Also keep back-pressure once hind-wheels are secure to allow the nose-wheel to slowly come down). Next time aim to land closer to the numbers to save time exiting the runway and save a radio call to backtrack.

Remember; Power + Attitude = Performance…

Radios: YHBA AWIS 134.9, general

Additional Information Sheet about PA28 provided.

Piper PA-28-181 VH-KEP Information Sheet

Engine: Four cylinder horizontally opposed Lycoming O-36 A4A. Developing 180 BHP @ 2700 RPM
Fuel: Total 189 L, total usable 182 L, Flight Planning @ 36 l/hr, 100LL
Oil: Minimum 6 quarts, Maximum 8 quarts
Electrical: 12 V Battery – A 14 v DC system, 60 amp alternator
Power settings: Climb – Full Power, Cruise 2300-2450 RPM (115 kts TAS)
Limitations (KIAS):

  • Vne                 152
  • Vno                 124
  • Va                 112
  • Vy                 76
  • Vx                                 64
  • Vfe                 101
  • Normal Climb; 80
  • Vs (Clean) 59
  • Vs (40 deg Flap) 51
  • Best Glide 70
  • Rotate                 60
  • approach (40 deg flap) 65-70
  • Flapless approach 75-80
  • Short field (40 deg flap) 65
  • Crosswind component 17

Max Take-off weight:      1111 kg
Basic Weight:      Include Unusuable fuel and oil; 695.6 kg basic moment
Basic Weight Index Unit: 1533547 Kg-mm