Draco down

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Broadbandboer
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by Broadbandboer » Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:09 am

Chalkie wrote:
Wed Sep 18, 2019 8:21 pm
frikie wrote:
Wed Sep 18, 2019 7:56 pm
I have flown turbine tail draggers in winds similar as posted earlier in the thread (Probably even worse).
It is easily conceivable to me that it could be possible that there was a fluke wind that caused this accident.
Sorry folks, in my books I don’t believe he thought that it might or might not work. I’m convinced that he was comfortable with the decision.

Hindsight is 20/20.
OK, we will agree to disagree.

When I looked at the video the left wing was higher than the right, standing still. When the takeoff run started there was no correction to this condition and no yawing into wind. The prevailing wind caused an early lift off and a roll to the right. There after it was game over.

Perhaps the technique used for a crosswind takeoff needs to be looked at. He said that, not me. Full aileron into the wind, just might be part of that brief.

Again. He was sure lucky there was no fire.
Very lucky that there was no fire.

Does the fact that it's a turbine make the chance of a fire less?
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by jimdavis » Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:31 am

Broadbandboer wrote:
Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:09 am
Does the fact that it's a turbine make the chance of a fire less?
Indeed it does BBB.

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Re: Draco down

Unread post by Dragon » Thu Sep 19, 2019 11:48 am

John.com wrote:
Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:19 am
homebuilt wrote:
Wed Sep 18, 2019 3:27 pm
When there is doubt there is no doubt. Don't do it. By Mikes own admission "I should have used the other runway". What more is there to say. His brain told him something was wrong and he still went ahead and paid the price. You are normally quite an intelligent human being otherwise you would not be flying. Why then do you not listen to your brain when it says don't do it.
I am greatly intrigued that mature, experienced and skilled pilots are even having this discussion, wondering why he did something so foolish, particularly when, in Mike's own words, the wind was so strong, he could barely taxi his aircraft!

Besides attempting to takeoff and fly in extreme weather conditions, it is patently evident that he was taking off on the WRONG runway and directly in front of the tower and terminal building in order to have the most impact on his 'audience' by conducting one of his signature Draco near-vertical takeoffs. Taking off on the correct yet more distant runway would have meant losing the 'crowd appeal' of his dramatic takeoff in Draco.

So, simply put, his desire to be a showman overrode his good, safe piloting skills and extensive experience, along with his obligation, as the PIC, to ensure the safety of all on board, above everything, and without exception.

Any pilot who can't relate to this is not being truthful to themselves! I am the FIRST to put my hand up. Sadly, the odds were stacked too high against Mike on this day.

So, THIS is the lesson I take away from this accident: SAFETY BEFORE SHOWMANSHIP - ALWAYS. NO EXCEPTIONS

PS: Please don't get me wrong. I am one of Mike's biggest fans!
I agree with you completely, go back to the top of page 2 and see what I said: Complacency, and Overconfidence is what got him at the end of the day, and they are ready to bite all of us if we let them.

Of far lesser significance but also containing lessons is his lack of crosswind technique employed on the occasion and I’m surprised this hasn’t been explored further here. I guess everyone is still too shocked that their hero is human and made some basic bad decisions.
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by Kortbroek » Thu Sep 19, 2019 1:32 pm

Some more info on the Wx

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Re: Draco down

Unread post by Dragon » Thu Sep 19, 2019 5:17 pm

So apparently 3 occupants? Could this be the 3! How many seats did he have and I wonder what their weight distribution on that day was? I know which side I would’ve wanted the bulk of the load.
DB83D161-E1FF-429A-94CB-07B808BD1E7E.png
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by Ugly Duckling » Thu Sep 19, 2019 5:21 pm

Dragon wrote:
Thu Sep 19, 2019 5:17 pm
So apparently 3 occupants? Could this be the 3! How many seats did he have and I wonder what their weight distribution on that day was? I know which side I would’ve wanted the bulk of the load. DB83D161-E1FF-429A-94CB-07B808BD1E7E.png
In one of his videos Mike says his buddy was in the back seat. A solid gent in comparison to Mike :D
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by ddevos » Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:25 pm

Dragon wrote:
Thu Sep 19, 2019 5:17 pm
So apparently 3 occupants? Could this be the 3! How many seats did he have and I wonder what their weight distribution on that day was? I know which side I would’ve wanted the bulk of the load. DB83D161-E1FF-429A-94CB-07B808BD1E7E.png
Being a four-seater it would have been fine with three up.
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by eddy » Fri Sep 20, 2019 9:40 am

Chalkie wrote:
Wed Sep 18, 2019 8:21 pm
frikie wrote:
Wed Sep 18, 2019 7:56 pm
I have flown turbine tail draggers in winds similar as posted earlier in the thread (Probably even worse).
It is easily conceivable to me that it could be possible that there was a fluke wind that caused this accident.

When I looked at the video the left wing was higher than the right, standing still. When the takeoff run started there was no correction to this condition and no yawing into wind. The prevailing wind caused an early lift off and a roll to the right. There after it was game over.

Perhaps the technique used for a crosswind takeoff needs to be looked at. He said that, not me. Full aileron into the wind, just might be part of that brief.

Having followed the build and the subsequent further modifications to the wing and suspension, this plane was built uncompromisingly to get airborne in as little time as possible.

To that end, a wing generating massive lift at slow speeds was added and I am sure that this capability had a significant role to play once the asymmetric airflow over the wing due to the cross wind came into play.

A second design feature that played into the crash was the long travel trailing link suspension that allowed MP to land in the back country (also added in his last mod) allowed the undercarriage on the right to compress excessively, further raising the left wing into the wind.

By making his plane "better", Patey made it uncontrollable in these circumstances.

Tryig to get airborne before the storm front hit made it worse.
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by Dragon » Fri Sep 20, 2019 1:27 pm

ddevos wrote:
Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:25 pm
Dragon wrote:
Thu Sep 19, 2019 5:17 pm
So apparently 3 occupants? Could this be the 3! How many seats did he have and I wonder what their weight distribution on that day was? I know which side I would’ve wanted the bulk of the load. DB83D161-E1FF-429A-94CB-07B808BD1E7E.png
Being a four-seater it would have been fine with three up.
True from a normal fore-aft weight and balance perspective but under those extreme circumstances it would make a difference which side the extremely large pax was sitting.
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by ddevos » Fri Sep 20, 2019 2:11 pm

Dragon wrote:
Fri Sep 20, 2019 1:27 pm
ddevos wrote:
Thu Sep 19, 2019 7:25 pm
Dragon wrote:
Thu Sep 19, 2019 5:17 pm
So apparently 3 occupants? Could this be the 3! How many seats did he have and I wonder what their weight distribution on that day was? I know which side I would’ve wanted the bulk of the load. DB83D161-E1FF-429A-94CB-07B808BD1E7E.png
Being a four-seater it would have been fine with three up.
True from a normal fore-aft weight and balance perspective but under those extreme circumstances it would make a difference which side the extremely large pax was sitting.
Looking at the fuselage shape of the Wilga, I don't thing there could be too much space for the rear passengers, so, looking at the size of that passenger I suspect he would have been using both rear seats... :wink:
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by hatman » Fri Sep 20, 2019 2:39 pm

wilga.docx
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by ddevos » Fri Sep 20, 2019 3:48 pm

hatman wrote:
Fri Sep 20, 2019 2:39 pm
wilga.docx
Wow, that's a cross-wind component of only 11.7 knots! I wonder how much, and in what way, the extensive modifications in Draco would have had an effect on this.
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by lampiesJR » Fri Sep 20, 2019 6:23 pm

hatman wrote:
Fri Sep 20, 2019 2:39 pm
wilga.docx
I see this is for the Wilga 35, not the 2000. Anyone know if there were any structural improvements between the two?(Not Draco of course)
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by Rab » Sun Sep 22, 2019 12:10 am

Experimental is what experimental means. Mike built this beast and reached out to the limits. I battle to see any anbiguity

PS watch his space
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Re: Draco down

Unread post by Wingnutter » Sun Sep 22, 2019 1:02 am

A couple of contributing factors that I can see here: Firstly and most obviously the strong crosswind. Secondly, as mentioned previously, the modified gear allowing the aircraft to roll excessively downwind, presenting a larger surface to the crosswind. Thirdly the increased area and extreme STOL capability of the wing, allowing the wing to fly at very low speeds at which aileron effectiveness would still be minimal.

However I think one of the main factors was the fact that he attempted the standard Draco party trick of performing an extremely short take-off roll - at this low airspeed case the ailerons were not effective enough to control the roll and as soon as the aircraft started to get light on the wheels, the righting moment provided by the starboard undercarriage leg was no longer there, causing more roll, presenting more surface area to the crosswind until the wingtip touched and it was game over. I’m sure if he had held the tail up and allowed the airspeed to build sufficiently the accident wouldn’t have happened.

Such a pity, awesome aircraft. These guys do push the limits, though.
If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.

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