Chapter 4—Slow Flight, Stalls, and Spins

Table of Contents
Slow Flight
    Flight at Less than Cruise Airspeeds
    Flight at Minimum Controllable Airspeed
    Recognition of Stalls
    Fundamentals of Stall Recovery
    Use of Ailerons/Rudder in Stall Recovery
    Stall Characteristics
    Approaches to Stalls (Imminent Stalls)—Power-On or Power-Off
    Full Stalls Power-Off
    Full Stalls Power-On
    Secondary Stall
    Accelerated Stalls
    Cross-Control Stall
    Elevator Trim Stall
    Spin Procedures
        Entry Phase
        Incipient Phase
        Developed Phase
        Recovery Phase
Intentional Spins
    Weight and Balance Requirements


An imminent stall is one in which the airplane is approaching a stall but is not allowed to completely stall. This stall maneuver is primarily for practice in retaining (or regaining) full control of the airplane immediately upon recognizing that it is almost in a stall or that a stall is likely to occur if timely preventive action is not taken.

The practice of these stalls is of particular value in developing the pilot’s sense of feel for executing maneuvers in which maximum airplane performance is required. These maneuvers require flight with the airplane approaching a stall, and recovery initiated before a stall occurs. As in all maneuvers that involve significant changes in altitude or direction, the pilot must ensure that the area is clear of other air traffic before executing the maneuver.

These stalls may be entered and performed in the attitudes and with the same configuration of the basic full stalls or other maneuvers described in this chapter. However, instead of allowing a complete stall, when the first buffeting or decay of control effectiveness is noted, the angle of attack must be reduced immediately by releasing the back-elevator pressure and applying whatever additional power is necessary. Since the airplane will not be completely stalled, the pitch attitude needs to be decreased only to a point where minimum controllable airspeed is attained or until adequate control effectiveness is regained.

The pilot must promptly recognize the indication of a stall and take timely, positive control action to prevent a full stall. Performance is unsatisfactory if a full stall occurs, if an excessively low pitch attitude is attained, or if the pilot fails to take timely action to avoid excessive airspeed, excessive loss of altitude, or a spin.

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Copyright 2012
PED Publication