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Tri-Q Warning

The tri gear conversion was not designed to make good pilots out of bad ones, nor good airplanes out of bad ones. It was designed to provide the average pilot a reasonable chance to taxi, take off and land the 02 without the directional problems associated with the tail wheel airplane. It is assumed you will be current in a nose gear airplane before flying your Tri Q.

A few tips and recommendations will aid you in your ground work, take off and landings in the Tri Q.

If the airplane has never flown as a tailwheel A/C, determine accurately the weight and balance and try to make your initial flights at the mid CG location. Set the aileron at about 1/4" trailing edge up until it is determined that the elevators are at the proper trailing edge position (in line with the wing tip fairings) when at cruise speed. Reflexing the ailerons will change the position of the elevators in flight. The more you reflex the ailerons up the more the elevators move up.

Spend some time in the airplane at a mid taxi speed (20 to 30MPH) and get a feel for the ground handling. You will notice that the brakes seem very sensitive. Don't try to make direction changes with the brakes until the rudder has been deflected full stop. 95% of all direction control can be made with rudder alone. It is very important that you keep your feet off the brakes for take off and landing. A slight brake may be needed if x Winds are high but you should venture into x winds only after several hours have been flown without serious x winds.

Once you are sure all is in order its time to go fly. Let me take you through a typical take-off and landing sequence. After the check list has been completed, set the elevator trim so that the trailing edge of the elevators are approx. 3/4" below the tip fillet. Mixture rich and the cowl flap open. Line up with runway centerline, and apply full power smoothly. You should take about 4 seconds from idle to full power. At about 70 MPH the no~e should be rotated to the climb attitude and almost immediately you will be flying. Directional control should be maintained totally with rudder input. Don't try to jab a brake now and then, it just isn't necessary. Establish a climb speed of 100 MPH for best engine cooling and visability and reduce engine speed if necessary to maintain temperatures.

I found it easiest to determine your best approach speeds before you make your 1st landing. Therefore, climb to 4 or 5 thousand feet and ease the power back to idle. Pull the nose up and slowly dissipate speed until you run out of elevator or you get a pitch buck. This should happen at about 65 to 70 MPH depending on your airspeed indicator accuracy and static system location. Now you know the magic number to avoid on short final. You may also want to get about 30 minuites flight time making turns etc. to get use to the handling. Lets go back into the pattern for a landing.

Establish about a 120 MPH downwind leg and reduce power to start your descent to final. I will set up a 100 MPH base and final to keep visability high. On about a 1/4 mile final, reduce power to show 85 to 90 over the fence and then power off. Maintain a nose high attitude, but not necessa~ily a full aft stick, and let the airplane settle onto the runway. It is best to fly it on rather than try to make a full stall landing. Remember, if the airplane starts a pitch buck while still three feet high, the nose will corne down hard.

As soon as the main gear touches, the nose wl11 almost always pitch down enough to kill all the lift on the canard. You can then lower the nose the rest of the way to the runway and let the airplane rollout. Do not attempt any wild short field landings until you have plenty of time in the airplane and are very familiar with those sensitive brakes.

An alternative landing would be using a little power all the way to touch down. This reduces the "pitch down" to a minimum and gives the pilot more time to feel for the runway. Again, don't make your first landing a full stall. I have landed at 100 MPH indicated with plenty of distance between the nose wheel and runway. After a few landings are "under your belt" go ahead and try slower and full stall landing. Stick to the one that feels best after several hours of flying.

If your plane is typical of our prototype, you should have many fun hours flying your Tri Q.

Good luck and may all your landings equal all your take-offs.