Hard landing rut.

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Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby capermania » Tue Jul 23, 2013 5:31 pm

A couple of weeks ago while abroad I could only manage hard landings. Thought it might be faster internet speed. Back home and find that I seem to have lost the ability to do better than the hard landing. Close to giving up! Any suggestions?
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Re: Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby Walle2815 » Tue Jul 23, 2013 7:26 pm

It has nothing to do with internet speed. Internet is only required to record your score on the leaderboards, that's all. You must fly very smoothly on the pitch axis. Try to memorize the pitch-up speed commanded by the glideslope's diamond at pre-flare. Ideally, all your moves regarding pitch and roll (leaving the rudder to the autopilot) should be something of that speed, not faster. Nothing rough or violent, everything nice and slow.

Practice on final approaches at KSC. If you stick your guidance vector aligned on the beginning of the nominal touchdown zone — which is precisely where the glideslope's diamonds leads you — and do nothing, your landing will indeed be very hard, something like 10 ft/s or more. You've got to smooth this down by pitching the nose up and make a nice flare.

Try pitching up when you pass the altitude of approximately 50 ft, and don't worry if you regain altitude at first instead of getting down. Flatten your move, you've got to feel her, feel her weight, her span and her latency because of her inertia. Keep in mind that if your move is abrupt, she'll respond to the command in a much greater way and much later than what you expected. Try again and again until you feel what is just needed to make a nice flare. Then you'll find the great joy of being able to get her only one or two feet above the ground and hold her in that position for a few dozen meters.

Once you master the exercise, you'll have to apply it more precisely to just the right place on the runway, and you'll make not only good, but also perfect landings! :)
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Re: Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby Sascha » Wed Jul 24, 2013 7:34 am

Sometimes when I fly, the shuttle comes in just a little bit too high, and when trying to force it to hit the perfect-landing spot, make a hard landing.
So I guess it’s probably not uncommon that while getting better overall, the hard landings increase, simply by trying to hit that touch down zone exactly.
My advice would be: if you’re too high (a few feet are enough), better land long than hard :)
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Re: Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby Walle2815 » Thu Jul 25, 2013 12:22 pm

Sascha, do you ever happen to have the feeling of coming in too fast at flare, even though you haven't change anything to your way of piloting? It happens to me sometimes and I can't explain why. On a given flight, several times in a row, I'll come pitching up at flare, heading for the nominal touchdown zone on a reasonable descent plane, and yet I can't hit the runway slower than 206 or 203 kts. It doesn't happen very often, but it is pretty annoying. I know it can be due to rear wind, but I have never thought of checking this.
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Re: Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby Sascha » Thu Jul 25, 2013 1:00 pm

I’ve improved the speedbrake logic at some point (the autopilot sets it at 3,000ft), but it’s not perfect. There might be some combinations of temperature, pressure, and wind that causes sub-optimal settings. I’ll look into this when I have time. In the mean time, you can of course always set the speed brake value manually ;-)
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Re: Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby capermania » Thu Jul 25, 2013 4:15 pm

Thanks for replies chaps. I'm not very technical, a bit long in the tooth (have problems with my varifocal spectacles), and operate largely by instinct. I often get the impression that this thing is sometimes in "Fierce" mode, sometimes friendlier, and that its variations are greater than those within myself as affecting performance. As for speedbrakes, I rely on auto.
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Re: Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby capermania » Thu Jul 25, 2013 4:55 pm

Right after my previous post I had a go on the sim - first in over 24 hours - and straightaway made a perfect landing (839443). First in over a month; followed by a hard. Hoo boy!
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Re: Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby frankynov » Thu Jul 25, 2013 5:57 pm

That's also how I got my first perfect landing :)
After days and days of unsuccessful try, first flight was a perfect !

Congratulations ! :)
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Re: Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby Spoonboy » Fri Jul 26, 2013 3:07 pm

Heh, works that way for me too.
The first one's great and it's downhill from there :)
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Re: Hard landing rut.

UNREAD_POSTby Walle2815 » Mon Jul 29, 2013 5:28 pm

Sascha wrote:I’ve improved the speedbrake logic at some point (the autopilot sets it at 3,000ft), but it’s not perfect. There might be some combinations of temperature, pressure, and wind that causes sub-optimal settings. I’ll look into this when I have time. In the mean time, you can of course always set the speed brake value manually ;-)

Ok, thanks! ;)
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