New to the Highlander

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Includes: Highlander, Escapade, Summit and SuperSTOL.

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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby MarkZ » Sun Mar 02, 2014 9:41 am

If ever a longer layover look to visiting Granbury. I'm @ 0TX0 plan on coming to visit our hi stress environment. :wink:
3516 Carla
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby MarkZ » Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:21 pm

I joined the ranks of those who have Highlander time today. I really like it and look forward to honing my skills in it. However, I will bring it home to do it on the grass.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby MarkZ » Sun Jun 01, 2014 10:34 am

For the first time I feel really good about this airplane. I brought it home and turned it every way but loose. A friend (also a very good tail dragging stick) and myself went off our grass strip and stalled it in every form and fashion. We are new to the 912 but fell in love with its capability. We flew it off from a 3 point 2 point and crosswind 1point. Landings with 21" tires suck on asphalt but do ok on the grass. However I'll be instructing the owner into a sport ticket so with much blasphemy we'll convert it to a nose wheel in the next weeks. I find that it climbs well around 50. On approach I find 55 to 60 work well. We had a direct crosswind above the field diminishing at ground level. With these conditions ground speed is high and I couldn't get enough power out. I have an interference problem with the flap handle bolt contacting the seat frame and am unable the last notch of flaps. Bottom line: I really like this airplane but there are hardware issues and the simple things like door and window latches need attention. I've not even looked at the plans but will. Any ideas or examples would be appreciated.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby User GDS » Sun Jun 01, 2014 11:06 am

With these conditions ground speed is high and I couldn't get enough power out.
Try power setting below 3000RPM and speed around 50 before turning base. Makes for a nice slow approach and don't have issue like you described.


Flap mechanism should look about like this:
https://picasaweb.google.com/117395836098651740243/HighlanderFlapAndTrimControls#5602674985833090514



Make sure the bolt that moves when you push the flap button is not too tight. You might be able to remove it and re-install 180 degrees and eliminate the interference.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby HS-JAT » Sun Jun 01, 2014 5:59 pm

There is a thread on the Flap issues (Last detent setting) too many people seem have.

I chose to physically enlarge the the locking detents.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby ScottieB » Sun Jun 01, 2014 7:21 pm

Hey MarkZ, Before you try turning base at 50 mph - a little tailwind while slightly uncoordinated could ruin your day at that speed-, check your idle speed and see if it is consistantly around 1800. (On the ground.) I've flown a couple of these Highlanders that had the idle speed set just a little too high (2100-2200) and they absolutely didn't want to come down out of the sky. It makes a difference. Scott.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby rmullins » Sun Jun 01, 2014 8:01 pm

I have a couple friends that have the idle set pretty low (1400/1500). It really does help to get the plane down and while in the air the engine speed never gets below 2000 even with it pulled all the way back., you just have to be aware and keep the engine above 1800 on the ground.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby MarkZ » Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:00 am

I'm fairly happy with the idle rpm it occasionly will drop below 1400 so I'm good with that. 50 indicated will work well for an experienced pilot for I find that is well over 1.3 Vso, we constantly got it to stall around 35 indicated. I'm seriously considering a vernier throttle from McFarlane. I flew it a lot yesterday with a good headwind and can get in and out in short order. What is the consensus on using flaps on t/o? I'm a big guy and flew with another big guy and this airplane just doesn't care. It amazes me how this little plane just claws its way into the sky. Now that I'm not intimidated on the landing I'm really doing some serious experimenting. I'd like to see more video of these guys using asphalt; I'll bet it gets pretty "interesting".
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby gkremers » Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:26 am

Mark,
The vernier throttle from McFarlane is really nice. You can use it like a friction throttle or vernier, it is very smooth. It was pricey but it works as advertised.

As far as landing on hard surface I really don't have a choice. The Airpark I live at only has hard surface. There are many grass strips around that I can practice at but when when it's time to come home there's only one choice. I guess I could land on my neighbors back lawns " :)

My plane has the 6 x 8.5 Tires with the Rage gear, hope that helps.

Gary
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby MarkZ » Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:54 am

I guess it's the 21" tires that give me fits or maybe just the lack of practice in this airplane. I'll admit it's no Champ but it really is nice to fly.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby User GDS » Mon Jun 02, 2014 3:30 pm

If you horse the plane into the air with full flaps, you'll end up flying in ground effect real close to a stall. When I was training I put in 1 notch of flaps at the run-up and didn't retract them until I got to a comfortable flying speed.

something that I find helpful for getting the feel of the slow speeds is to do power off stalls. Every time I fly, on the way to the fun zone I pull power and pull back. Hold the AC right at the stall and then with a light touch, buffet-recover, buffet-recover about 6 times or until I've lost enough altitude. The pitch only changes a couple degrees for the whole maneuver. (maybe I'll try to make a 1 minute video, anybody know the name of that maneuver?)

No help for improving asphalt ops, Gil T told me to take my time and always do full stop landings during training phase and that helped a lot. But I still have my dentist on speed dial.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby av8rps » Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:22 pm

Mark,

If I recall correctly, you put a Maule tailwheel on your Highlander. If so, did you try taking the cam plate off the back of that Maule tailwheel to see if that makes things any easier on your Highlander? Doing so will not allow you to swivel the tailwheel 360 degrees (for pushing it backwards into hangar typically), but it is likely to handle much better if there are any issues associated with how it is set up.

As I've explained before, Maule tailwheels on homebuilts have caused a lot of wrecked airplanes. It's not that there is anything wrong with how Maule built or designed them, but they seem to be extra sensitive to how they are set up (proper pivot angle, exact throw distances for both left and right, etc.) And what makes this so difficult to explain to people is that some homebuilts with Maule tailwheels work perfect, while others are so difficult to handle that even a super high time tailwheel guy can't handle the plane. I know all that from experiences with a bunch of Avids and Kitfoxes, and a Highlander that all had Maule tailwheels. In my opinion, for every one that works perfect there are probably two that don't.

So if you do have a Maule tailwheel, just try removing that bolt and plate on the back of the tailwheel that stops it from full swiveling, and you'll know immediately if it handles better that it isn't set up properly.

Oh, and on using flaps; I use one notch for all takeoffs, and usually two for landing. If you want to take off really short leave the flaps off until you have enough airspeed, and then pull 2 notches on at the same time you rotate. Fun, fun, fun :D

Paul
Last edited by av8rps on Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:42 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby av8rps » Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:38 pm

User GDS wrote:Snip.....

Hold the AC right at the stall and then with a light touch, buffet-recover, buffet-recover about 6 times or until I've lost enough altitude. The pitch only changes a couple degrees for the whole maneuver. (maybe I'll try to make a 1 minute video, anybody know the name of that maneuver?) .....Snip


I demonstrated that to a flight instructor friend in my Avid way back when, and he called that a "falling leaf". But maybe what you are describing was different because on the Avid at right around 22 mph the buffeting would start, followed by a ever so slight wing drop, and then the other wing would drop, and that would just keep repeating, all the while you were losing a lot of altitude with very little pitch change.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby danerazz » Tue Jun 03, 2014 8:40 am

I thought the "falling leaf" involved stalling the plane and applying rudder until a wing starts to drop as it just begins the incipient spin stage, but you then stop it with opposite rudder and when it starts to go that way you reverse and repeat. Really a rudder/spin avoidance maneuver.
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Re: New to the Highlander

Postby MarkZ » Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:33 am

I did notice that the Maule broke loose fairly easily but really wasn't an issue. I think that modifying the way you describe would be a good deal because the airplane turns around in short order anyway. However it looks as if Troy has a completely new gear set for the nose dragger that we'll be getting this week. I'll see about posting some pics. He says to mount the new mains before we take the others off. It will be pretty interesting to see an airplane set up with 4 mains :D. The way you describe the approach on the ragged edge of the stall I think would work well. This airplane never feels like it is trying to depart even at very low speeds.
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