Today I went up with Tom and since there was a strong crosswind and the pattern was empty we decided to stay at Caldwell and work on crosswind landings. We had a little trouble getting the plane started but after a little primer we got her running. We taxied to runway 22 and Tom reminded me to keep the yoke at the proper attitude even when taxiing (when wind is from the front 180 degrees keep the elevators neutral and point your thumbs toward the wind, when it is coming directly at your nose keep ailerons and elevators neutral, when it is coming from your back point your thumb away from the wind and apply downward elevator and if it is coming from directly behind you keep the ailerons neutral and downward elevators). This is always important but it’s especially so in crosswinds as the plane can get blown over if you’re not careful. We took off, making sure to keep the ailerons pointed into the wind until established in a crab on the departure leg and I used the same visual queues to make my turns, adjusting a bit for the wind with a crab when necessary. On downwind I learned that you should use left rudder when reducing power to start your descent because just as the plane has a left turning tendency when increasing power (corrected with right rudder) it tends to turn to the right a bit when decreasing power. Since it was windy we only used 20 degrees of flaps and flew final a little fast , but I was a little too fast on a few landings and we floated down the runway. Another thing I need to work on is being less jerky with the controls (as Tom says, +2-2=0 but 0+0 also equals 0) and I need to stay at the right attitude (0) instead of going back and forth (+2-2). I tried a landing with his open handed style (instead of keeping a death grip on the yoke), and I have to say, it will take some practice to do it as fluidly as he can. I’m thinking about building a force feedback element into my flight simulator yoke at home (at least some resistance on yoke movement) to practice this style. I am taking another lesson tomorrow and then I’m leaving the city to visit my cousins in Seattle so it might be a couple weeks before the next lesson.
Logbook Entry N811JD (C172)
Crosswind takeoffs + landings