Flight Training - July 2012 - 17

BY ROD MACHADO

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Except for soft-field landings, you generally want to avoid using engine power in the landing flare. Dear Rod: I’m a student pilot, and I am having a very difficult time maintaining my altitude in slow flight at minimum controllable airspeed. I can get to my slow-flight speed just above stall. But once I’m there, it’s very difficult for me to keep from descending. Can you offer any advice for this problem? Dave Greetings Dave: The one thing you must keep in mind when operating in slow flight at minimum controllable airspeed (MCA) is that you are operating on the back side of the power curve, also called the region of

reversed command. If you pull aft slowly or push forward slowly on the elevator control, the airplane will eventually descend or climb, respectively—this is the reverse of what you would experience when operating on the front side of the power curve. Please keep in mind that pulling back or pushing forward quickly might actually produce a temporary climb or descent (respectively), but you’ll eventually see the airplane behave in the reverse manner, as I just described. You can expect this reversal of control functions when operating at 20 to 25 percent or less above stall speed. Because you’re on the back side of the power curve, your instinct when flying slowly at MCA should be to make a power adjustment to stop a descent or a climb, followed by near-simultaneous adjustment of the elevator control to maintain

the target airspeed. The problem most students have with making power adjustments at MCA is that they move the throttle too slowly and timidly. “Dillydally” and “dainty” aren’t in order here. Man up by throttling up to quickly stop any climb or descent. Don’t be thrifty with that throttle. This isn’t the ballet— it’s flight school.
Rod Machado is a flight instructor, author, educator, and speaker. He has been a pilot since 1970 and a CFI since 1973. rodmachado.com). Visit his blog (www.

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Flight Training - July 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Flight Training - July 2012

Flight Training - July 2012
President’s Perspective
Right Seat
Letters
Best of Both Worlds
How It Works
Knowledge Test News
After the Checkride
News
Since You Asked
News
Final Exam
Products
ASI News
AOPA Action
Flying Carpet
ENJOY THE VIEW
V IS FOR VELOCITY
TECHNIQUE
Weather
Checkride
Flight Lesson
Year One
Career Advisor
Tech Talk
Is Flying Hard?
Delaying Solo
Are You Positive?
Advertiser Index
Debrief
Flight Training - July 2012 - Flight Training - July 2012
Flight Training - July 2012 - Cover2
Flight Training - July 2012 - 1
Flight Training - July 2012 - 2
Flight Training - July 2012 - 3
Flight Training - July 2012 - President’s Perspective
Flight Training - July 2012 - 5
Flight Training - July 2012 - Right Seat
Flight Training - July 2012 - Letters
Flight Training - July 2012 - 8
Flight Training - July 2012 - 9
Flight Training - July 2012 - Best of Both Worlds
Flight Training - July 2012 - 11
Flight Training - July 2012 - How It Works
Flight Training - July 2012 - Knowledge Test News
Flight Training - July 2012 - After the Checkride
Flight Training - July 2012 - News
Flight Training - July 2012 - Since You Asked
Flight Training - July 2012 - 17
Flight Training - July 2012 - News
Flight Training - July 2012 - 19
Flight Training - July 2012 - Final Exam
Flight Training - July 2012 - Products
Flight Training - July 2012 - ASI News
Flight Training - July 2012 - AOPA Action
Flight Training - July 2012 - 24
Flight Training - July 2012 - 25
Flight Training - July 2012 - Flying Carpet
Flight Training - July 2012 - 27
Flight Training - July 2012 - ENJOY THE VIEW
Flight Training - July 2012 - 29
Flight Training - July 2012 - 30
Flight Training - July 2012 - 31
Flight Training - July 2012 - 32
Flight Training - July 2012 - 33
Flight Training - July 2012 - V IS FOR VELOCITY
Flight Training - July 2012 - 35
Flight Training - July 2012 - 36
Flight Training - July 2012 - 37
Flight Training - July 2012 - TECHNIQUE
Flight Training - July 2012 - 39
Flight Training - July 2012 - Weather
Flight Training - July 2012 - 41
Flight Training - July 2012 - 42
Flight Training - July 2012 - Checkride
Flight Training - July 2012 - Flight Lesson
Flight Training - July 2012 - Year One
Flight Training - July 2012 - Career Advisor
Flight Training - July 2012 - 47
Flight Training - July 2012 - Tech Talk
Flight Training - July 2012 - Is Flying Hard?
Flight Training - July 2012 - Delaying Solo
Flight Training - July 2012 - Are You Positive?
Flight Training - July 2012 - Advertiser Index
Flight Training - July 2012 - 53
Flight Training - July 2012 - 54
Flight Training - July 2012 - 55
Flight Training - July 2012 - Debrief
Flight Training - July 2012 - Cover3
Flight Training - July 2012 - Cover4
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