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Found 2 results

  1. First off, this forum has helped me out tremendously with information about the whole WOFT packet process. I am thankful to the posters on here who have shared there experiences, and I plan to share my own when I ship. I was selected in July as a civilian, and my BCT ship date is Dec 29. I have been looking over the forums to use the months I have to prep as much as I can for flight school, wocs, and bct. From what I gather so far: BCT- not really much to study, just focus on running and keeping apft score up. Prepare to embrace the suck haha WOCS- some talk about getting ahold of the SOP, but also heard that I will have plenty of time to study it at Rucker. Land Nav worries me the most because it is go/no go and I have never done a military Land Nav course. Anything I can do to prep for that besides the futuresoldier online course? Flight School- found this site and blog to be helpful http://www.flightschoolstudyguide.com/blog.aspx Mentions 5&9 should be studied extensively before school begins so I bought an app with those flashcards to get my feet wet and am taking an intro heli flight just so my nickel ride won't be the first time I take the controls. Is there anything that you would suggest adding to the list?
  2. Hi everyone, I thought sharing my story as a PPL student in South Africa on a R22 will emphasize the importance of training and flying with a 'what if' mindset. I did my pre-flight, started the helicopter, did the run-up checks, called the tower for clearance to cross over the one runway on my way to the so called 'grass square'. This is the only spot in the area with no grass at all and was our departure point for circuit flying. It was a small square and the surface was of the dark reddish kind of clay type. There was no slope and no bumps, just a flat and even surface - perfect for someone doing their solo consolidation. My instructor and I flew a circuit or two to make sure I didn't forget what flying a circuit meant... Then he jumped out, walked off to the front and commanded I picked the heli up, so as to see I hover like required... I started lifting the collective slowly but confidently, trying to feel for the moment when I am going to start having control of the cyclic. I concentrated on the balancing as best as possible, because I knew dynamic rollover will not be a good start to my training and career...as well as to the instructor standing close enough for flying debris to have an effect on his health... The 22 started lifting its nose, skids lifting in the front... At this stage I feel it worth mentioning that it was in the raining season and the 'clay heli-pad' was moist enough for the skids to start digging into it...obviously one side more than the other...and obviously the left side more (left skid low in the 22). I was oblivious to all of this, because everything looked normal. I was JUST about to lift off in my imagination when I realized the helicopter felt 'stuck' to the ground a bit (while lifting the collective), so I continued lifting (at this stage it wasn't a conscious decision yet, it was more of an observation WHILE it was happening in the few split seconds it took to happen). Suddenly the right skid broke free from the clay at the back and 'jumped' into the air, left skid still stuck...the helicopter started turning a little bit to the right side (law of least resistance) so I added pressure on the left pedal (instinct off course, because of not knowing what is actually happening in reality). This stuck the left skid even deeper into the clay. At the same time I lifted the collective in a small jerking movement to get myself off the ground (this was a 'safety reaction' that I had built in myself for not staying too close to the ground, but getting away from the ground as to avoid drifting and causing dynamic rollover). The movement was small because I had told myself to NEVER lift the collective in a sudden way more than a LITTLE bit. I guess thinking about it now it would be an inch maybe (at 6000 ft D.A.)...obviously to avoid dynamic rollover. This caused the helicopter to start banking left and aft at the same time while I was fighting the motion as soon as I realized what was happening (because I though about the skids digging into soft surfaces at the back when flying solo before the flight) I wanted to dump the collective and get the aircraft on the ground, but it broke free at that instant and if I didn't start lowering the collective already by that time it would have developed lateral velocity and most probably I would have had a dynamic rollover, because I was very close to the ground. The result was the helicopter just bounced on its skids with the cyclic far to the right to balance the helicopter enough to be able to put it down right side up...like in a 'power failure in the hover' exercise. Before and while I was training I read the book 'Fatal Traps for Helicopter Pilots' by Greg Whyte and it made me think about things a lot more... I started thinking: "What if I had dynamic rollover sneak up on me, how will I recognize it and how long will I have to react? What will be the proper response?" And then I would make up a scenario where I would imagine me hovering and the skid hooked on something obvious and I didn't realize it until the helicopter started rolling more the more I lifted the collective. And I would imagine how I realized 'dynamic rollover is happening' and how I lowered the collective very positively although not OVER controlling but stabilizing with the cyclic to keep the helicopter level... So this would be my though process more or less while playing out the self made scenarios to play the 'what if' game with. If it wasn't for this way of thinking I am pretty confident I would not have realized what was happening and what to do...not in time anyways...because that whole sequence (where the skid got stuck and I wondered why the helicopter was struggling to lift) was in about 1 to 2 seconds from start to finish. I hope this shows someone out there how important thinking ahead and playing 'what if' scenarios really are. That is what prepare you, otherwise it will just be a theory class in your minds eye, instead of a tool to prepare you for the real life situation. In real life, there is usually a very short time to think, thus you have to know what to do already, especially in case where you don't realize what is happening until the last moment. I hope someone benefits from this story.
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