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  #1  
Old 06-10-2013, 01:05 AM
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PerfTech PerfTech is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Redlands, Ca.
Posts: 1,496
Unhappy Accidental Destruction Anti-Splat

.... Well I hate to admit this, but today we pretty much put the supreme test on our Anti-Splat-Aero Nose Job, and for that matter all the landing gear on my airplane. I have been working with a very good friend who is building an RV that is 95% or more completed. He anticipates it's completion in about 60 days or so. I have been using my airplane to help him build some hours and get him familiar with the RVs. He is a great guy, learns quickly and until today all has gone very well. Today we went out for a couple of hours airport hopping and doing some touch and goes at each destination. after three of them at the same airport he decided to do one more before returning to my home airport. each was consecutively better so, I was very relaxed and confident that his next one would be perfect. We came across the numbers a little slow and the decent was far to rapid. He tried to check it and over did it pitching the nose up too high resulting in a stall that dropped us on from about ten feet or so. This was a very violent hit that resulted in a considerable amount of damage to my airplane. The blame lies squarely with me, as it was my responsibility to fix the problem before it escalated to the point of no return. I guess I am not instructor material. The hit was very hard at 5 1/2 gs. as revealed by my meter in the photo below.
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.... This 5 1/2 gs translates (With the loading we had) to approximately 9,900 lb on the three gear legs. The loads were relatively evenly spaced, as we hit almost flat.This being said it is understandable having the damage we experienced and one would expect even more. It destroyed all three wheel pants and all intersection fairings top and bottom. Many screws were literally pulled through the glass and all were cracked and ground off. The mains are bent a little as the plane sits about an inch or two lower on them now.
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.... I carry 50 psi is my nose wheel and 35 psi in the mains. The vertical impact and load was so great that it compressed the tires to the ground and bent the nose wheel out at the point of contact. This destroyed the tire, tube, wheel and bent the fork.
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.... The mains suffered damage to the tires and the impact compressed them to the ground as well, allowing the brake rotors to take a violent hit, bending and destroying them as well.
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.... The up side to this, if there is one, would be we walked away with bruised egos, feeling a little stupid and humbled with an airplane that is repairable. The Nose Job performed flawlessly, without a scratch and kept the nose gear in perfect tact. had it collapsed, I would have lost at best a $10,000 propeller, a cowl assembly and been looking at an engine tear down and repair. At worst a possible flip over and total loss. I am very impressed with this, and can hardly believe all the damages to everything else, with none to the nose gear leg. You would expect the nose gear to be the first to fail given the history of them when stressed.
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... I wanted to share this with the forum to perhaps help someone else from this type of incident. I would have bet money that I was exempt from this type of accident and this only happens to the other guy. Well I stand corrected. Cheers, Allan...
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  #2  
Old 06-10-2013, 01:25 AM
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tkatc tkatc is offline
 
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Sorry for you mishap Allan. Thanks for "manning up" and sharing so that we all might learn.

Hopefully you have that bird fixed up as good as new soon.
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  #3  
Old 06-10-2013, 01:48 AM
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Flyguytki Flyguytki is offline
 
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You said it best that the best part is that all you bruised is your ego. The airplane can be fixed, and with your skills I'm sure you will find even more improvements for the RV's from this experience. I am amazed at the 5.5 g's, I never would expect it to be that high from a 10 foot drop.

Did you know immediately the extent of the damage? As in, were the tires flat, real bad vibrations, or did all seem normal till you shutdown?

Glad you both are ok, how's your friend? Hopefully he is using it as a learning experience and is not wanting to sell off his project after this, airplanes can always be fixed.
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  #4  
Old 06-10-2013, 02:33 AM
fatherson fatherson is offline
 
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Thank you for sharing the details of this sad mishap, Allan. I don't think I ever would have considered flying my RV (someday) without transition training first, but your story and all the advocacy here is so helpful for getting the message out. Glad you're both okay.

About the stall: do you have an AOA system?

--
Stephen
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  #5  
Old 06-10-2013, 02:40 AM
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Andy Hill Andy Hill is offline
 
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Sympathies Allan...

Worth speaking to Vans since a direct "heavy landing" + 'g' reading they should be able to help on what needs checking. I am aware of an RV-8 that did 4 'g' I think, and the gear legs bent. Vans were quite clear they are designed to bend at 3g to protect the airframe, and that all worked as design.

Regarding:
Quote:
I guess I am not instructor material
one of the hardest things as an instructor is how far you let "Bloggs" (as the student was termed in the RAF!) go before intervening. And you did not always get it right then. In the instructing I do now, on ex-RAF Jets, we have rule about not letting passengers / non-type qualified pilots handle the controls below 1000' except with an instructor. A bit of a hard rule, but it does enable the pilot to not cause offence to someone apparently competent, but you'll only find out too late

Hopefully nothing damaged above the gear legs
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  #6  
Old 06-10-2013, 03:16 AM
gasman gasman is offline
 
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Here you go Allan..... http://www.vansairforce.com/communit...48&postcount=1
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  #7  
Old 06-10-2013, 05:07 AM
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pierre smith pierre smith is offline
 
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Thanks for the heads-up Allan.

It's hard to keep up with students sometimes and I've had around 80 trainees when I had my -6A...yes, it's hard on airplanes...one reason I've stopped.

Best,
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  #8  
Old 06-10-2013, 09:00 AM
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woodmanrog woodmanrog is offline
 
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Glad to hear all everyone walked away intact. Airplanes can always be repaired or replaced. I am going to let my wife read your "confession" because she can't understand why I scream at her when I think she is getting too slow on final. I am NOT good instructor material because I react so negatively towards her when she makes what "I think" is an error. I was told that when I fly with her to only let the plane get to the point I think it is going to be unsafe and then say "I got it." I just am not sure when that point is reached. Newbies in RV's just don't seem to react quick enough when things start to go wrong. Just my 2 cents worth.
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  #9  
Old 06-10-2013, 09:16 AM
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airguy airguy is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodmanrog View Post
Glad to hear all everyone walked away intact. Airplanes can always be repaired or replaced. I am going to let my wife read your "confession" because she can't understand why I scream at her when I think she is getting too slow on final. I am NOT good instructor material because I react so negatively towards her when she makes what "I think" is an error. I was told that when I fly with her to only let the plane get to the point I think it is going to be unsafe and then say "I got it." I just am not sure when that point is reached. Newbies in RV's just don't seem to react quick enough when things start to go wrong. Just my 2 cents worth.
There's a lot of truth to the old adage that spouses should not try to teach spouses ANYthing...

My wife told me the other day that she wanted to learn to fly too - but half a heartbeat later she spun around and stuck a finger in my face saying "But YOU'RE not teaching me!"


In any case - sorry about the damage story, it can be repaired. Glad to see the nose mod worked as well as it did!
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  #10  
Old 06-10-2013, 09:30 AM
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Vlad Vlad is offline
 
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Default Thanks for the lesson Alan

Alan thanks for sharing. Recently I had a rider a good pilot I let him fly a lot and do some landings. Several times I held my finger as stick travel limiter. He said to me at the end that RVs are not for training...
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