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STEEP TURNS

STEEP TURNS

Description

A maneuver consisting of a turn in either direction using a bank angle between 45 60.

Objective

To develop the smoothness, coordination, orientation, division of attention, and control techniques necessary for the execution of maximum performance turns when the airplane is near its performance limits.

Elements

         Clear the area

         Choose forced landing area

         Configure aircraft: straight-and-level, airspeed less than VA (C172RG: 18 Hg, 2300 RPM, 106 KIAS at MGW), altitude ≥1600 AGL

         Select outside references

         Establish bank between 45 60 and simultaneously apply back elevator pressure and add power (C172RG: trim up 2 half-turns and 23 Hg, 2300 RPM) to maintain altitude 100 (stay above 1500) (50 for commercial maneuvers, 45 for private maneuvers)

         Trim as needed

         Keep ball centered

         Use external references: horizon for bank while also looking for traffic

         Anticipate roll-out by leading approx. 20 (half bank angle) to original heading 10

         Upon completion of 360 turn (usually left), complete a second 360 to the opposite direction (usually right); a perfect turn will end with slight turbulence as you hit your own wake

         Adjust pitch, power, trim as necessary

         Maintain ball centered

         Look for traffic

 

In side-by-side airplanes, pilots on the left seat tend to dive on turns to the left because the nose appears to rise when making a left turn, and vice versa. This is known as parallax error.

Common Errors

         Failure to clear area

         Excessive pitch change during entry or recovery

         Starting recovery prematurely

         Failure to stop the turn on a precise heading

         Excessive rudder during recovery, resulting in skidding

         Inadequate power management

         Poor coordination

         Gaining altitude in right turns or losing altitude in left turns

         Failure to maintain a constant bank angle

         Disorientation

         Attempting to perform maneuver by instrument reference instead of visual

         Failure to scan for traffic during the maneuver

References

FAA-H-8083-3A Airplane Flying Handbook p. 3-7, 9-1


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