Glider going to Powered Aerobatics

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kudo

Member
Joined
Apr 10, 2013
Messages
14
Location
Missouri
Hey guys,

I have a lot of time doing Glider Aerobatics (Spins and essentially Sportsman) but have never really flow in a competition. I have had my PPL for two years and was interested in switching over to aerobatics in powered and competing. I have a couple questions.

How much time will it take to transition to tailwheel? I have 150+ hours in gliders and ~100 hours powered.

How different is powered aerobatics than gliders? I wouldn't think it would be too hard you just have to account for P-Factor?
How much time do you think it would take to learn Sportsman and possibly Intermediate level acro?

Speaking of going to actual Comps (down the road) would it be easier(or cheaper long term) to go in Powered or Rent and trailer a glider?

Figured I'd put the Thread in this forum because Glider guys are more likely to have both than powered dudes.
 

TFF

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 28, 2010
Messages
13,055
Location
Memphis, TN
You probably have a leg up on the average person going that way with the glider experience. Doing the actual competition depends on how compeditive you want to be. Pretty much relitive to how much money you have to practice with and fly with. Depends on aircraft. Renting something like a Citabria is about as good as it will be when it comes to renting; your not going to rent an Extra. That of course is if they would rent it to you. I would think buying a Pitts S1C would be the cheapest way to go and have some fun; they are not real expensive in the market. Intermediate starts the need for good equipment. Sportsman does not require top equipment. Intermediant is about it for biplanes; move up and epxensive monoplanes are only good enough. Energy management is key and your glider experience helps with that. Just like the glider, you fly the aircraft, and you do what you have to do to make it work.
 

BJC

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HBA Supporter
Joined
Oct 7, 2013
Messages
11,254
Location
97FL, Florida, USA
Hey guys,

I have a lot of time doing Glider Aerobatics (Spins and essentially Sportsman) but have never really flow in a competition. I have had my PPL for two years and was interested in switching over to aerobatics in powered and competing. I have a couple questions.

How much time will it take to transition to tailwheel? I have 150+ hours in gliders and ~100 hours powered.
That depends on the training you have had and the way you currently fly. Do you use the rudder properly and make a full stall landing and keep weight off the nosewheel? If you do, transitioning to TW will be straight forward. If you have to unlearn sloppy habits (as taught by many of today's instructors) it will take a little longer.

How different is powered aerobatics than gliders? I wouldn't think it would be too hard you just have to account for P-Factor?
Never flown gliders (except for that 7 ECA that just wouldn't run inverted) but your powered flying will make dealing with P-factor natural. What will be new, depending on the airplane, will be dealing with gyroscopic forces. Still not a biggie, but most people find having to use left rudder to go straight when applying back stick to be different.

How much time do you think it would take to learn Sportsman and possibly Intermediate level acro?
There is no one answer to this question. It varies tremendously with the pilot. The very first thing to do, though, is to learn to fly the airplane in all attitudes and maneuvers. You should be proficient at inverted spins before doing hammerheads in anything, and flat spin recognition and recovery (stick forward and aft) in anything that will flat spin. Check out the Beggs spin recovery technique.

Speaking of going to actual Comps (down the road) would it be easier(or cheaper long term) to go in Powered or Rent and trailer a glider?
Don't know. I don't like to fly aerobatics in a rented airplane. Way too many unknowns. As suggested above, there are some very capable airplanes for relatively little cost that are competitive in Intermediate, and will will fly (with a performance handicap) the Advanced routines. If you are serious, I recommend that you get you own airplane.

Figured I'd put the Thread in this forum because Glider guys are more likely to have both than powered dudes.
Go to the IAC web site - part of the EAA web fiasco. Find a list of qualified aerobatics instructors, one of which is my friend Steve Wolf. WingOver Aerobatics, offering aerobatic flight training at Leesburg, Florida

Good luck.


BJC
"Aerobatics is flying, everything else is just riding."
 

Monty

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Joined
Jul 15, 2010
Messages
1,294
Location
Fayetteville, AR / USA
I learned to fly in gliders, many moons ago. You know how to use a rudder. A tailwheel airplane is just like a glider. There are two landing types. The glider analogy is high/low energy. Tailwheel: wheel/3 point. You already know how to fly a tailwheel. The big difference is the lack of inertia from the big wings, and the lack of visibility if in a biplane or other blind tailwheel. Go fly a citabria/champ/cub. You shouldn't have any problem.

The big difference between gliders and power is DRAG. Just pretend the power lever is the spoilers/auto thermal. You'll see what I mean.
 
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