Aerial Photography Photo Gallery: Taildragger Training

2 June 2013: Taildragger training at North Hampton, NH (7B3): This short turf field has a restaurant, and, useful on a very hot day like this one was, a homemade ice cream stand. Really my second taildragger lesson if you count flying the Pitts Special, but I didn't handle either that takeoff or that landing.

Hampton Airfield the restaurant

Ground school, and then pushing the 1942 L-4 from its tiedown to the fuel pumps. This is the military version of a J-3 Cub. It's not yellow, and it has lots of windows in the back. On this very hot and very windy day, we left the side window completely open, both top and bottom.

ground school pushing the L-4 to the pumps

Getting settled in for my first flight, taxiing on the turf, and taking off in a strong wind for the practice area to the west to practice airwork:

buckling in instructor and student taxiing taking off - the tail is up taking off in the air off to the practice area

My first wheel landing:

wheel landing

Second flight, in even stronger winds:

taxiing back taxiing taking off climbing 1942 L-4

Attempt at a three-point landing, with nasty windshear on final and lots of wind on the ground:

three-point landing

Taxiing back to the hangar since no one else wanted to fly given the strong winds.

taxiing to the hangar

Done for the day. Time for a debriefing - and ice cream!

done for the day

Second lesson: Landing practice, in a 1947 J-3 Cub:


Sometimes you can get someone else to hand-prop.


Slipping; on final:

slipping on final

Full-stall landing:

full-stall landing

Taxiing back:

taxiing back

Wheel landings, without and then later with a stiff crosswind:

wheel landing crosswind wheel landing

Switched to a Citabria at Air Direct in Nashua. I don't get cramps in my knees trying to fold my long legs into this plane, and I can control the rudder pedals and the heel brakes without major contortions.

Citabria taxiing Citabria overhead Citabria taking off Citabria on the ground Citabria taking off Citabria in the air Citabria on the ground with runway markers Citabria on the ground

Switched tactics again, to an Aeronca Champ at Noble Airventures, and back to working with Devan Wiebe. This 1946 airplane, with no electrical system, is the ancestor of the Citabria and is very similar except for its very-small engine. We can use the turf runway at 6B6 unless it is too boggy. Devan handprops it.

Devan hand propping the Champ Charlotte in the cockpit taxiing taking off landing on the turf runway full-stall landing on the turf runway wheel landing on pavement, in a puddle climbing out climbing out Champ in the air Champ landing on 03 Champ approach Champ three-point landing

I finally finished my tailwheel endorsement on April 19, 2014, in the Champ:

Devan hand-propping hand-propping taking off climbing out airborne wheel landing on turf Champ on turf

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Last modified 13 May 2014