Crash at Plett airport (SF25 on 2 Dec 2019)

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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by excolonial » Tue Dec 03, 2019 11:56 am

I have flown with this outfit many years ago, nothing reckless or risky when I went up. I think the gusting wind/wind shear was the culprit.
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by spokes » Tue Dec 03, 2019 11:57 am

The wind was on 30 yesterday. The aircraft came to rest left of the centreline and before the threshold on the eastern side of that little dam.
It is faceing the way it came plus a little bit more. To me it looks like a 270deg left spin on very short finals. That airbrake still comes to mind. Nobody spins on short finals. IMHO. I may have my facts wrong
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by jimdavis » Tue Dec 03, 2019 11:58 am

From previous posts we have two conditions which don't go well together:

1. The pilot often made a habit of landing without power.
2. A strong (30kt) gusty wind came up suddenly. This makes the windspeed 60% of the 50kt approach speed!

From the POH we have a further three that can make matters worse.

3. CAUTION! The electric variable pitch propeller requires about 1 minute to change from feathered glide setting to power pitch.
4. The height loss during restarting is usually about 500 - 600 ft.
5. In rough air the SF 25 C will drop a wing on stalling.


Even the best of pilots can be caught out by the wrong combination of the above.

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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by Ugly Duckling » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:03 pm

Jim I don't believe that this SF25 was fitted with a VP prop.
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by snoopy » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:09 pm

See Bearcat's photo of UUA, dd Jun 04, 2012

viewtopic.php?t=13070&start=11235
Last edited by snoopy on Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by Ugly Duckling » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:12 pm

snoopy wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:09 pm
See Bearcat's photo of ULA, dd Jun 04, 2012

viewtopic.php?t=13070&start=11235
Very much a P-Prop and no reason for a VP
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by snoopy » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:17 pm

Stall speed of Scheibe SF-25 Falke is 35kn
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by jimdavis » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:23 pm

Ugly Duckling wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:12 pm
snoopy wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:09 pm
See Bearcat's photo of ULA, dd Jun 04, 2012

viewtopic.php?t=13070&start=11235
Very much a P-Prop and no reason for a VP
Thanks Snoops and Paulus - indeed this one is solid and fixed! But a feathering prop does make sense on a motor-glider.

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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by Ugly Duckling » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:44 pm

jimdavis wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:23 pm
Ugly Duckling wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:12 pm
snoopy wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:09 pm
See Bearcat's photo of ULA, dd Jun 04, 2012

viewtopic.php?t=13070&start=11235
Very much a P-Prop and no reason for a VP
Thanks Snoops and Paulus - indeed this one is solid and fixed! But a feathering prop does make sense on a motor-glider.

jim
Of the SF25 I have flown, including this one with Stu, they have all had fixed pitch plank props.
Some of the Grobs have a 3 position mechanical prop, feather, climb and cruise.
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by snoopy » Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:59 pm

I would not know if it was variable pitch prop at time of the incident or not, all photos of UUA dont seem to have the same prop - so it may have been upgraded over time or changed.

But the rest you mention jim , kind of sums it up in a nutshell.

He joined the South African Air Force for pilot training in 1970. Flew as Harvard instructor in the SAAF for 6 years. Joined SA Airways in 1976, flew Boeing 727, 737 ,747’s as well as Airbus A300 and A340’s. Retired in 2017 after 36 years of service. Amassed close to 25,000 hours during his career and kept actively flying in Plett. It can happen to anyone...
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by flymonkey » Tue Dec 03, 2019 1:06 pm

Goffel wrote:
Mon Dec 02, 2019 9:54 pm
Funny how time always proves one right.

RIP Pax.

Goffel :x :x :x
Please explain what is "funny" ??
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by Thermalator » Tue Dec 03, 2019 1:41 pm

</off topic> (but bad ideas must be nipped in the bud)
Goffel wrote:
Mon Dec 02, 2019 9:54 pm
Funny how time always proves one right.

RIP Pax.

Goffel :x :x :x
There is a misguided idea in the CAA that they are ALWAYS responsible for ALL for reward flying at ALL times and that ALL flying for reward MUST be as safe as flying a schedule.....this bad thinking needs adjustment !

I do not have any info but I do know this operation was approved as commercial flown by commercial pilots & was not associated with the Soaring Society in any way, I think it was CAA approval not RAASA approval - it was different.

BTW decades ago a soaring pilot did the same operation & had several "VW fuel pump" type issues, landed on Buffalobay beach, & Noetzie beach (only landing in 20km either side) but even he would have baulked at 30kts. I know of pilots who land more challenging aircraft deliberately in 80km/h winds at Worcester in order to fly wave days.
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by Jack Welles » Tue Dec 03, 2019 2:07 pm

Thermalator wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 1:41 pm
Goffel wrote:
Mon Dec 02, 2019 9:54 pm
Funny how time always proves one right. RIP Pax.
Goffel :x :x :x
There is a misguided idea in the CAA that they are ALWAYS responsible for ALL for reward flying at ALL times and that ALL flying for reward MUST be as safe as flying a schedule.....this bad thinking needs adjustment !
Just curious. In your view, on whom should the (aviation clueless) general public rely (for quality issues), when offered aviation services for commercial reward by operators, if not the regulator?
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by John Boucher » Tue Dec 03, 2019 2:13 pm

I do not have any info but I do know this operation was approved as commercial flown by commercial pilots & was not associated with the Soaring Society in any way, I think it was CAA approval not RAASA approval - it was different.
I think I answered that in a previous post. Indeed they are fully compliant with the required ASL, Part 96 approval and yes NOT RAASA but CAA. A legitimate operation all the way after having jumped through all the hoops and requirements - contrary to what is thought!
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Re: Crash at Plett airport.

Unread post by ESTLEC » Tue Dec 03, 2019 2:58 pm

Hell to break those wings like that it hit the ground hard. Sad . Is the crash site before the threshold of 30 ?
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