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  #1  
Old 05-18-2022, 10:12 AM
rockwoodrv9 rockwoodrv9 is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Meridian ID, Aspen CO, Okemos MI
Posts: 3,094
Default How bumpy is too bumpy or too windy?

I am still a student pilot. I have about 40 hours solo and 15 or so instruction in my 9A. I am not a fan of bouncing around when I fly but here in Michigan calm days are rare.

I have limited my flying to less than 10 mph on the ground or a 5-7 knot cross wind. As it heats up here, the different types of land - trees, lakes, farm land, all cause thermals and some pretty bumpy rides.

It still freaks me out a bit when it starts getting bumpy. I have been trying to fly through it thinking I will get used to it. I am better but I do cut some of my flights short because I am not enjoying it.

Any suggestions on how to become more comfortable in the bumps or flying technique that will help?
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  #2  
Old 05-18-2022, 10:32 AM
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Steve Crewdog Steve Crewdog is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: KBVS
Posts: 242
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When I was learning to fly hang gliders another student measured the days by puppy dogs. If it was smooth, it was a zero puppy dog day. The windier it got, the more it was like walking a gaggle of puppy dogs, and her personal limit was 3 puppy dogs pulling her around. Being yanked around by 4 puppy dogs just wasn't fun to her.

You will get used to it, but don't be in a big hurry. The limits you describe are what I used to give all my student pilots, are an excellent wind envelope for a student pilot, and it's even a good envelope for the first hundred hours or so. And just because you get the Private Pilot certificate does not mean you stop learning. I would strongly encourage my students to give me a holler every six months or so to go up and give them a little "personal envelope expansion" into stronger winds, or to make sure they had not grown into bad habits.

Remember, it's a lot easier to get INTO trouble than to get out of it, and the cheapest insurance you have is the credit card in your wallet. If you're on a cross country somewhere and the weather looks bad, a $100 hotel room is cheaper than a broken airplane.


Good luck!!!
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Last edited by Steve Crewdog : 05-18-2022 at 10:45 AM.
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  #3  
Old 05-18-2022, 10:37 AM
wilddog wilddog is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: va.
Posts: 753
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Get some glider instruction and you will come to love the bumps and seek them out.
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  #4  
Old 05-18-2022, 10:44 AM
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Veetail88 Veetail88 is offline
 
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Location: Hales Corners, WI
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I've never gotten "used to it", but rather I'll tolerate it to fly.

Having said that, altitude is your friend. Generally, if you climb high enough you'll find smooth air. If there are scattered clouds they will mark the altitude. Above=smooth. If I remember my aviation weather right, that is the elevation where the rising air gets to the point where the heat and moisture come out of it and it can no longer rise. But even without that tell tale, there is usually a point where it gets smooth, which is where I always go if I can.
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  #5  
Old 05-18-2022, 10:47 AM
rockwoodrv9 rockwoodrv9 is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Meridian ID, Aspen CO, Okemos MI
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wilddog View Post
Get some glider instruction and you will come to love the bumps and seek them out.
That is an interesting idea. I never liked boating in Lake Tahoe pounding across the chop either! Im sure glider training is a real good tool to have in your toolbox.
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  #6  
Old 05-18-2022, 10:49 AM
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jneves jneves is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2021
Location: Livermore, CA
Posts: 201
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Veetail88 View Post
I've never gotten "used to it", but rather I'll tolerate it to fly.

Having said that, altitude is your friend. Generally, if you climb high enough you'll find smooth air. If there are scattered clouds they will mark the altitude. Above=smooth. If I remember my aviation weather right, that is the elevation where the rising air gets to the point where the heat and moisture come out of it and it can no longer rise. But even without that tell tale, there is usually a point where it gets smooth, which is where I always go if I can.
Agreed. Altitude will usually get you out of the bumps, or at least in California. I'll often take trips from the SF Bay Area to Southern California. There are days that 5500 is a great altitude and others that 11.5K is great. Now that I have the RV, I usually fy 8500/9500 for comfort, speed and fuel economy.
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  #7  
Old 05-18-2022, 11:40 AM
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Dan 57 Dan 57 is offline
 
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Location: LSZF
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Quote:
Any suggestions
Fly more!
Seriously, try to fly as much as possible, it will not only hone your skills as a pilot, it will also get you accustomed to turbulence and less sensitive to them.
As when I started flying aeros many moons ago, I was getting nauseous after a short time. Training more often made it go away.
The low wing loading of the -9 does not help, so technically speaking you gotta load it up to the max, fly slower, or change to an RV with a higher wing loading
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  #8  
Old 05-18-2022, 11:48 AM
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MacCool MacCool is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2020
Location: central Minnesota
Posts: 1,091
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For me, it just depends on whether I'm actually "on a mission", or just flying around for fun especially with a passenger. Lot's of thermals/bumps takes the edge off of the fun I'm having because I have to work harder...everything in the cockpit is just a little bit harder. Whereas if I'm actually flying somewhere then I find rough air to be easier to ignore, although I will maybe work a bit harder to get to an altitude where it's smoother.
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  #9  
Old 05-18-2022, 11:48 AM
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koupster koupster is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: SLC, UT (KBTF)
Posts: 345
Default Airliners slow down in turbulence...

and so do I. I may slow to 90 KIAS in rough air in my 6, the equivalent in a 9 might be around 80. I slow for comfort, not because of apprehension of damage to the airplane.

At 80 KIAS, an RV-9 at full gross can experience approximately +2.3 and -2.0 g's, either from pilot maneuvering or turbulence. Notice that the negative g limit can be exceeded at this speed. These numbers were interpolated from a chart published by Van's https://www.vansaircraft.com/wp-cont...1/hp_limts.pdf

Rather than "How bumpy is too bumpy?", perhaps the question might be, "How fast when it's bumpy?"
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  #10  
Old 05-18-2022, 12:13 PM
fixnflyguy fixnflyguy is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Winston-Salem, N.C.
Posts: 1,563
Default Bumps no Bueno, but..

I never liked bumpy days, never will..however, there will be the day soon when you take off on a smooth calm day and it goes ugly bumpy. At some point, you will have to manage it, and land. The RV's can take a pounding and handle winds better than anything I have flown. I have flow my RV-4 on days I wouldn't take a kite out of the closet, not because I wanted too, but because the conditions became that way while I was away from home . I slow to the about 125 if its really bad, and tighten your belt! You want to be prepared , so just start flying in it until your comfort level is up. I have a friend CFI who loves to take his students up and teach high wind, bumpy skills. maybe you can find one where your at.
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