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Spitfire stick aft -> tail wheel lock


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Hi there,

 

I'm pushing myself through the rather humbling experience of landing the Spit in DCS...

I'm okay with taxiing. 

I can take-off pretty consistently now. Not pretty, but ok.

I can fly here just fine. I'm not too bad with the constant rudder trim changes and keep her trimmed quite well.

 

Still, each and every landing so far resulted in one wing or the other touching the ground and some pirouettes.

 

Yes, I have watched several youtube videos about landing the spit and I have read chucks guide and the very well written essays about taildraggers here.

 

Two questions so far:

1.) During final approach and flare, do you move the rpm lever at all? Does it matter? 

2.) Pulling the stick back to lock the tail wheel -> when do you do that? Right after touchdown? Or - if you're really good - it is already there at the end of your flare manouvre?

 

Phil Style mentioned in one of his old videos, that setting the wheelbrakes to about 30% gives more stability after touchdown. And yes, it seems to me it does. Is that something real-world pilots would have considered? Or is that just asking for a prop strike in the real world?

 

Cheers,

 

Emacs

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1. You set rpm before landing approach, i set 2850 for landing, then you don't touch rpm lever at all, doing power adjustment only with throttle.

2. Pulling stick back in spitfire does nothing, tail wheel is free all time and you cant lock it.

To keep it straight on landing roll out, you need to use rudder, once plane slows down you will have to use differential braking.

Setting constant braking force is something you will never do in RL, first it i almost impossible to do it in spitfire, second you would burn brakes at every landing, they lets say weren't reliable designs. RL pilots reduce use of brakes to minimum, not talking about airliners jest which has brakes designed to to do full blown braking.


Edited by grafspee
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I7 8700k 4.9GHz, Gigabyte Z390 Aorus PRO, Ram 32 GB G.skill, Palit Gamerock OC 3090,Hotas Warthog, T.Flight Rudder Pedals

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Pulling stick back in spitfire does nothing, tail wheel is free all time and you cant lock it.

 

Ah... 

now that explain a lot of the strange stuff I was experiencing 🤣

Thank you, Graf Spee ! 

 

 

P.S.:

That reminds me of the old joke, where the pilot leaves a note to the maintenance crew "Auto pilot a bit rough occasionally, please check."

And the maintenance crew replies with a message "No autopilot installed in this plane."

 

Cheers,

 

Robin


Edited by Emacs
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The only thing you'll get from pulling back the stick is getting the tailwheel to sit firmly on the ground, and this is recommended for takeoffs and, I believe, for landings too.

Now, for landings, the trick is to start dancing on the pedals (as is for takeoffs). Subsequently, you should employ your brakes too. You can check a video I posted a while ago in the pinned thread about landing the Spitfire. It is from a real life landing and shows how the pilot employs the brakes.

Sent from my SM-J510FN using Tapatalk

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Yup. That dance…

It works for me, or rather I‘m able to dance right, during take off.

Took maybe six to ten attempts to get the muscle memory to get reasonably good results.

 

But during the landing, even if I start dancing, there is always one moment where she surprises me with a sudden veer to one side I didn‘t expect.

Even when we’ve slowed down quite a bit already I often find myself full depressing rudder on one side and a sudden swing to the other side happens. 

And more often then not the „inner“ wing, the one into the sudden turn, moves down and scrapes the ground. I find this particularly odd. I would expect the outer wing of the turn to go down, but it is usually the one inside the swing.

 

Anyhow, I‘ll keep trying and learning.

Love learning the Spit !

During the first flights I could hardly fly her straight and level and was fighting the controls all the time.

After some hours now I have zero problems with her in the air.

In fact I find the Spit in many regards easer then the P-51 - in the air. 

On the ground no so much, but I‘ll get there.

 

Cheers,

 

Robin

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Well dancing takes a lot of effort and time, even on the pedals 😃

And making that dance on landings is harder.

Learnt how to fly it properly when I got my first rudder pedals a year ago. I neglected flying it for a few months and now I'm learning it again, including landings. Just keep in mind that when she's misbehaving, it's because you missed a step. Be proactive, keep a good, continuous and smooth (rather than abrupt) oscillation on the pedals. I would advise against the use of brakes at high speeds, unless necessary. As for the rpm in your original question, I believe the appropriate setting for both takeoffs and landings is full rpm.

 

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The most important thing to do on landing is stay ahead of the aircraft. You need to fix problems before they happen, it isn't easy to do at all. But if you feel the wing starting to dip then you're already too late. You just have to examine what went wrong, practice practice practice. If you're reacting to the problems you aren't moving fast enough. It's a very dynamic aircraft, and landings are constant small and large corrections. Making sure your rudder is trimmed so you have no side slip will help a lot. Raise the flaps as soon as you touch down if you can, that helped me a lot. Then you have more weight on the wheels and less bounce. Try to touch down at less than 100, even 90 is fine. The slower you are at touchdown the less time you have to spend in Spitfire's least favorite configuration, which is rolling fast down the runway. RPM should be full when you are on final. The low throttle setting will prevent RPMS from being at full anyway.

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Having the ball centered on touchdown helps.

Something I found immensely helpful learning Spitfire takeoff was fixing on a cloud to keep straight.

I've recently taken to raising the seat for takeoff / landings too see better. Used to do that only for CV landings.

 


Edited by -0303-

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About this "dancing on the pedals".

 

Maybe depending on definition of "dancing". This is not something you do in real life. When I learned to fly gliders I brought with me very bad habits from an arcadish "flight simulator". I did rapid movements (maybe twitchy pots contributed) and you don't, ever. It's only ever minute smooth corrections. The only exception on the takeoff run, the first ~5 seconds before having airspeed over rudder, one might rapidly slam it fully to one side to keep straight.

 

Maybe the lack of real life physical feedback makes rapid pedal dancing a thing in DCS.

I've seen videos of aerobatic flying, punctuated "pumping" the stick through roll manouvers is something different.

 

Learning to land the Spitfire smoothly is quite satisfying and worth it.


Edited by -0303-

Intel Core i7 3630QM @ 2.40GHz (Max Turbo Frequency 3.40 GHz) | 16.0GB Dual-Channel DDR3 @ 798MHz | 2047MB NVIDIA GeForce GT 635M | 447GB KINGSTON SA400S37480G (SATA-2 (SSD))

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I never meant "full inputs", I meant rapid small movements. Tapdancing like.

In real life (gliders) full input is a rare (rudder) exception only within the first few seconds (single digits) of the takeoff run.

 


Edited by -0303-

Intel Core i7 3630QM @ 2.40GHz (Max Turbo Frequency 3.40 GHz) | 16.0GB Dual-Channel DDR3 @ 798MHz | 2047MB NVIDIA GeForce GT 635M | 447GB KINGSTON SA400S37480G (SATA-2 (SSD))

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Ok, then, i though about something different then. I was thinking about chaotic constant left and right rudder apply during take off or landing rolls.

This rapid small inputs are only because crap rudder pedals, with very strong centering index and high initial force to over come static friction, this is no way "technique".

It is impossible to not over control plane with my rudder hardware, i have to do it this way. And proper trimmed plane makes it a lot easier, a lot easier.

 


Edited by grafspee

I7 8700k 4.9GHz, Gigabyte Z390 Aorus PRO, Ram 32 GB G.skill, Palit Gamerock OC 3090,Hotas Warthog, T.Flight Rudder Pedals

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About this "dancing on the pedals".
 
Maybe depending on definition of "dancing". This is not something you do in real life.


I believe this matter is covered extensively in the first essay by Chief Instructor pinned in this forum. Furthermore, what he describes pertaining to "dancing" is consistent with what we see in real life Spitfire takeoff and landing videos from the movement of the rudder. So, I'm not sure what your point is. Perhaps you're referring to something different, but for the sake of clarity it should be noted that what most of us refer to as "dancing on the rudder pedals" is not a "sim habit" but a real thing.



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I regret causing confusion. I, took for myself only one possible meaning of DCS "dancing": Rapid back and forth medium inputs unrelated to anything except when seeing a trend favoring the opposition direction. In a real plane you'd have difficulty moving it this fast.

 

The idea, maybe mostly my idea, to avoid prolonged inputs in any direction, this was discussed I remember. Prolonged input caused by lack of real world feedbacks that otherwise prevents this.

 

This, ugly and unrealistic tactic kind of worked. But so does doing it more realistically.

 

What works best of all is to find a cloud as reference to keep straight.

 


Edited by -0303-

Intel Core i7 3630QM @ 2.40GHz (Max Turbo Frequency 3.40 GHz) | 16.0GB Dual-Channel DDR3 @ 798MHz | 2047MB NVIDIA GeForce GT 635M | 447GB KINGSTON SA400S37480G (SATA-2 (SSD))

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57 minutes ago, -0303- said:

I regret causing confusion. I, took for myself only one possible meaning of DCS "dancing": Rapid back and forth medium inputs unrelated to anything except when seeing a trend favoring the opposition direction. In a real plane you'd have difficulty moving it this fast.

 

The idea, maybe mostly my idea, to avoid prolonged inputs in any direction, this was discussed I remember. Prolonged input caused by lack of real world feedbacks that otherwise prevents this.

 

This, ugly and unrealistic tactic kind of worked. But so does doing it more realistically.

 

What works best of all is to find a cloud as reference to keep straight.

 

 

 

Ah, I understand. Perhaps these dampers that are being introduced in some sim pedals will make the movement a little more realistic (MFG has released one that I may be getting in the future). But indeed sadly no feedback from the airplane as yet.

Now, I'm no real life pilot, but I think that if one is proactive rather than responding to what the airplane is doing (that is waiting for visual cues in DCS), then the movement is almost inherently closer to real life--no need for abrupt movements. But this is just my perception of how things stand; like I said, I have no real life experience.

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What we need is FFB rudder pedals, sometime i think it is more crucial when flying warbirds than FFB Stick.

 


Edited by grafspee

I7 8700k 4.9GHz, Gigabyte Z390 Aorus PRO, Ram 32 GB G.skill, Palit Gamerock OC 3090,Hotas Warthog, T.Flight Rudder Pedals

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