Lessons from “Gear-Up Mishap Was Botched Go-Around”

Hitting the runway on a go-around is not the greatest airmanship, but the Aerostar pilot did one thing right: he didn’t panic and continued flying the airplane.

Aerostar with curled props after ground contact.

It is interesting to see that a plane can fly 80 miles with both prop tips curled back 6″, but then it was a light load.

Most pilots would argue that he should have returned for landing despite not having on-airport repair facilities, but crating the plane up and shipping it back home becomes a pressing factor when you’re the owner.

(When I did my commercial training in Florida, the owner specifically requested that instructors and renters return home for repairs instead of landing at nearby Cape Canaveral, which had a much longer runway. We ignored him, as a matter of safety, of course, but we weren’t paying for potential crating/shipping of broken airplanes.)

“Q-tip” prop design increases efficiency with less span-wise airflow (“air fence”) and reduces noise (smaller blade diameter means lower tip velocity, which approaches speed of sound.) It also increases ground clearance. 🙂

avweb.com: Gear-Up Mishap Was Botched Go-Around
aopa.org: When An Airplane Has A Q-Tip Propeller
W: Propeller

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