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Instrument Flying Handbook
Airplane Basic Flight Maneuvers Using Analog Instrumentation

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Instrument Flying


Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Human Factors
Chapter 2. Aerodynamic Factors
Chapter 3. Flight Instruments
Chapter 4. Section I
Airplane Attitude Instrument
Using Analog Instrumentation
Chapter 4. Section II
Airplane Attitude Instrument
Using an Electronic Flight

Chapter 5. Section I
Airplane Basic
Flight Maneuvers
Using Analog Instrumentation
Chapter 5. Section II
Airplane Basic
Flight Maneuvers
Using an Electronic Flight

Chapter 6. Helicopter
Attitude Instrument Flying

Chapter 7. Navigation Systems
Chapter 8. The National
Airspace System

Chapter 9. The Air Traffic
Control System

Chapter 10. IFR Flight
Chapter 11. Emergency

8. Failure to maintain established pitch corrections, a
common error associated with cross-check and trim
errors. For example, having established a pitch change
to correct an altitude error, there is a tendency to
slow down the cross-check, waiting for the airplane
to stabilize in the new pitch attitude. To maintain
the attitude, continue to cross-check and trim off the

9. Fixations during cross-check after initiating a
heading correction, for example, there is a tendency
to become preoccupied with bank control and miss
errors in pitch attitude. Likewise, during an airspeed
change, unnecessary gazing at the power instrument
is common. A small error in power setting is of less
consequence than large altitude and heading errors.
The airplane will not decelerate any faster by staring
at the manifold pressure gauge.

Heading errors usually result from the following faults:

1. Failure to cross-check the heading indicator, especially
during changes in power or pitch attitude.

2. Misinterpretation of changes in heading, with resulting
corrections in the wrong direction.

3. Failure to note and remember a preselected heading.

4. Failure to observe the rate of heading change and its
relation to bank attitude.

5. Overcontrolling in response to heading changes,
especially during changes in power settings.

6. Anticipating heading changes with premature
application of rudder control.

7. Failure to correct small heading deviations. Unless
zero error in heading is the goal, a pilot will tolerate
larger and larger deviations. Correction of a 1° error
takes a lot less time and concentration than correction
of a 20° error.

8. Correcting with improper bank attitude. [f correcting
a 10° heading error with 20° of bank, the airplane
will roll past the desired heading before the hank
is established, requiring another correction in the
opposite direction. Do not multiply existing errors
with errors in corrective technique.

9. Failure to note the cause of a previous heading error
and thus repeating the same error. For example, the
airplane is out of trim, with a left wing low tendency.
Repeated corrections for a slight left torn are made,
yet trim is ignored.

10. Failure to set the heading indicator properly or failure
to uncage it.

Power errors usually result from the following faults:

1. Failure to know the power settings and pitch attitudes
appropriate to various airspeeds and airplane

2. Abrupt use of throttle.

3. Failure to lead the airspeed when making power
changes. For example, during airspeed reduction in
level flight, especially with gear and flaps extended,
adjust the throttle to maintain the slower speed before
the airspeed actually reaches the desired speed.
Otherwise, the airplane will decelerate to a speed
lower than that desired, resulting in additional power
adjustments. The amount of lead depends upon how
last the airplane responds to power changes.

4. Fixation on airspeed or manifold pressure instruments
during airspeed changes, resulting in erratic control
of both airspeed and power.

Trim errors usually result from the following faults:

1. Improper adjustment of seat or rudder pedals for
comfortable position of legs and feet. Tension in the
ankles make it difficult to relax rudder pressures.

2. Confusion about the operation of trim devices, which
differ among various airplane types. Some trim wheels
are aligned appropriately with the airplane's axes;
others are not. Sonic rotate in a direction contrary to
what is expected.

3. Faulty sequence in trim technique. Trim should be
used not as a substitute for control with the wheel
(stick) and rudders, but to relieve pressures already
held to stabilize attitude. As proficiency is gained,
little conscious effort will be required to trim off the
pressures as they occur.

4. Excessive trim control. This induces control pressures
that must be held until the airplane is trimmed
properly. Use trim frequently and in small amounts.

5. Failure to understand the cause of trim changes. Lack
of understanding the basic aerodynamics related to
basic instrument skills will cause a pilot to continually
lag behind the airplane.