Spin Training in 172 for CFI endorsement

flyingpreacher

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I am hopefully pursuing CFI later this year and I am aware of the need for a spin endorsement. I am a part owner of a 172M that is not placarded "No Spins." In talking to my fellow club members last night, I came up with a few questions:

1. If I show up with spin training in a 172, will the DPE see that as suspicious? I'd hate to get to my checkride and have something...ANYTHING that raises red flags to the DPE.

2. I know that properly equipped 172's can do crazy stuff (I found that in searching these forums) but is that an acceptable way to get spin training? I know 172's are known for "mushy" spins.

3. What does spin training entail? Just going up and doing some spins? Obviously (hopefully anyway) if I'm pursuing my CFI, I already understand the theory of stall/spin recovery. Are most CFIs ok with issuing a spin endorsement or am I going to have a time finding somebody to do this with me?


P.S. I have searched the forums and haven't come up with anything directly related. If I missed it, please point me in the right direction.
 
IIRC, you need to within the W&B for Utility category to do spins legally.

If the plane is legal for spins and the CFI signs you off, why would the DPE question it?

Yes, a C-172 barely spins compared to other aircraft.

When I did mine, many years ago, it was just go up and do some spins. I did it with the aerobatics instructor at the school. But it was a bit pro forma as I had done aerobatic training with him, so had done a LOT of spins. But needed to to them for the formal CFI sign off.
 
You definitely want spin training before you attempt the checkride. Theory is nice. Theory does not prepare you for reality.

Otherwise, please mention me in your will.
 
I did 2 CFI spin endorsements last month in a C-172M. I have not done a lot of spins in 172's so I can really only report my recent findings and observations from last month in one specific 172M. Would welcome input with anyone with more experience.

We spent about 1.5 hours reviewing the Owners Manual and the C-172 Spin Supplement (it probably has a more formal name, I am to lazy to go look it up). And talking about why pilots still spin, including in the training environment, i.e. with a CFI or under the supervision of a CFI. We also discussed student/pilot apprehension about practicing stalls, some really like it, some don't. One applicant who was pretty confident, then didn't really care for them much, The other applicant was apprehensive about them, then thought they were fun and wants to do more spins.

We did about a 1 hour each of flight time doing different spin entries.

What I learned was in Utility Category in the plane I was flying the best entry was pitch up with power, Stall, kick in full Rudder and as it broke go power to idle and full opposite aileron. I could only get about a 3/4 turn rotation before it would come out of the spin on it's own. Most any other configuration I tried it came out of the spin even sooner.

If you carefully read the manual it sort of eludes to some interesting Spin Characteristics. You will notice the recovery procedure for intentional spins vs Inadvertent spins has some differences. My thought is Why? Best guess is intentional spins would be done in utility category. An Unintentional Spin could likely be done in Normal Category. Some training I have received from other instructors seems to confirm this. A little research seemed to indicate that in the same configuration as I was doing the spin training, but adding full fuel to push it out of the Utility category, doing the same spin entry at about the 3/4 rotation mark instead of it recovering on it's own it the Rotation rate seems to increase, or the spin starts to transition into the "developed" Phase, is my interpretation of that behaviour.

The main take away I think is... We teach what we safely can about stall spins, but inadvertent spins can be way different than what we are able to safely demonstrate.


Brian
CFIIG/ASEL
 
What I learned was in Utility Category in the plane I was flying the best entry was pitch up with power, Stall, kick in full Rudder and as it broke go power to idle and full opposite aileron. I could only get about a 3/4 turn rotation before it would come out of the spin on it's own. Most any other configuration I tried it came out of the spin even sooner.
Why use full opposite aileron in a 172? Especially in the M and subsequent models? The wing's washout and differential aileron and cuffed leading edge already hamper the spin, and opposite aileron in those things won't aggravate it further and will likely reduce the spin itself. I never had any difficulty getting at least a full turn out of a 172M. Opposite aileron in something older like a Champ will definitely get a deeper stall, but not in a 172M+.

They don't even want to spin to the right in a full-power entry. Very forgiving, so that students who take spin training in a 172 come away with a complacent attitude about spins. They need spin training in a Citabria or Champ.

Students need to see stall/spins in at least full-power departure and skidding base-to-final. It will spin better if the departure stall is in a climbing turn to the right. Slip it a bit if it doesn't want to break.
 
My thinking is that if you are going to be teaching people to fly, you should be fully competent in all aspects of aircraft flight regimes, including spins. You owe it to your future students. Doing the minimum in a 172 doesn’t seem to me adequately preparing you.
 
Why use full opposite aileron in a 172?

If I used anything less then full opposite aileron it would usually come out of the spin about about 1/3rd of a rotation.

They need spin training in a Citabria or Champ.

Agree I like doing them in Citabrias, Champs, and Cubs. I two different pilots inadvertently put me into a spin in a Champ while doing Slow Flight, Admittedly that Champ had sort of an odd entry from that configuration. It really didn't break it would just slowly enter a descending left turn, while the pilot had full opposite right Aileron and full back Elevator. Both pilot said the same thing while it was happening, "Brian, what do I do?" the response "Push forward on the stick" and the ailerons and elevator start working again.

Students need to see stall/spins in at least full-power departure and skidding base-to-final. It will spin better if the departure stall is in a climbing turn to the right. Slip it a bit if it doesn't want to break.

We did about every configuration of entry we could think of or imagine that a pilot might inadvertently get themselves into a spin.

The other part of the discussion and training was Flaps, we can't do spins with Flaps since that is not approved, but we could practice Stalls with Different flaps settings. I believe Flaps make it easier to enter a spin.

Brian
CFIIG/ASEL

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There are some obvious glitchs in the airspeed recording....
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Find someone with a 2 seat extra. Full back, stall, full rudder, full opposite aileron, enjoy the view outside, recover.
 
If I used anything less then full opposite aileron it would usually come out of the spin about about 1/3rd of a rotation.

And you were holding full up elevator and full rudder the whole time?
 
And you were holding full up elevator and full rudder the whole time?

Opposite aileron has been a pro-spin but flattening input in every airplane I've ever spun simply due to the increased AOA on the inside wing that's already stalled deeper than the outside. Why would this not apply to the 172 as well?
 
Opposite aileron has been a pro-spin but flattening input in every airplane I've ever spun simply due to the increased AOA on the inside wing that's already stalled deeper than the outside. Why would this not apply to the 172 as well?

In normal category I believe that is exactly what it does. In Utility Category where I was flying this 172M, it would just allow me to get about another 1/3rd to 1/4 turn before it recovered on it's own.

Brian
 
What I learned was in Utility Category in the plane I was flying the best entry was pitch up with power, Stall, kick in full Rudder and as it broke go power to idle and full opposite aileron. I could only get about a 3/4 turn rotation before it would come out of the spin on it's own. Most any other configuration I tried it came out of the spin even sooner.

I took an older straight tail model 172 out for some spin training and it would not break and rotate without a bunch of power and a fairly nose high attitude.

When I finally did get a good spin entry out of it, it rolled over inverted and was happy to spin... That was "exciting" enough for one day and it was a good exercise in spin recovery.
 
I understand that aerobatic aircraft will better demonstrate fully developed stalls, but if you never plan on instructing in a Pitts, Extra, or Citabria, why do your spin training in them?

I agree that it’s good to experience flying aerobatics in a aerobatic aircraft, but show me the data that suggests spin recovery training in a Citabria will lead to better outcomes in recovering from an inadvertent spin in a Cessna, than having done spin training in a Cessna in the first place?
 
Spin recovery is spin recovery. It's kinda like saying don't learn stalls in a Cherokee because a 172 behaves differently. Sorta, but not really. The basics still apply. Aerobatic airplanes are just better for demonstrating the full envelope of spin characteristics, flat, accelerated, etc. in each direction. They also climb back to altitude more quickly so you can get more spins in per hour. Not talking a 7ECA Citabria here of course. More like a Super Decathlon, Pitts, or Extra. An Extra is overkill and excessively expensive for this type of training though.
 
1. If I show up with spin training in a 172, will the DPE see that as suspicious? I'd hate to get to my checkride and have something...ANYTHING that raises red flags to the DPE.

Suspicious? Why? That's like asking if showing up to a checkride with a 51-nm XC flight is suspicious. No, it meets the requirements. So does spin training in a 172.

Also note that the spin endorsement does not indicate what model of airplane it was performed in, so the DPE would have to specifically ask you (or comb through your logbook looking for that flight, hopefully finding it by the remarks).

"I certify that [First name, MI, Last name] has received the required training of § 61.183(i) in [an airplane, a glider]. I have determined that [he or she] is competent and possesses instructional proficiency in stall awareness, spin entry, spins, and spin recovery procedures."

2. I know that properly equipped 172's can do crazy stuff (I found that in searching these forums) but is that an acceptable way to get spin training? I know 172's are known for "mushy" spins.

It may not be the world's best spinning aircraft, and may not be great experience, but yes, it's acceptable. There is no question about that.
3. What does spin training entail? Just going up and doing some spins? Obviously (hopefully anyway) if I'm pursuing my CFI, I already understand the theory of stall/spin recovery. Are most CFIs ok with issuing a spin endorsement or am I going to have a time finding somebody to do this with me?

Yes, it mostly consists up just going up and doing some spins.

As for "who" to do it with, yes, any CFI can technically do it with you. However, they may not necessarily be willing to. For instance, if you came to me for a spin endorsement, I wouldn't be willing to do it. I haven't spun an aircraft since the 152 I did my endorsement in over 10 years ago. Yes, perhaps this is a a failing on my part, but it is what it is. So I wouldn't feel right trying to teach a prospective CFI to spin - but I DO have some people I would be happy to refer you to instead.
 
Spin recovery is spin recovery. It's kinda like saying don't learn stalls in a Cherokee because a 172 behaves differently. Sorta, but not really. The basics still apply. Aerobatic airplanes are just better for demonstrating the full envelope of spin characteristics, flat, accelerated, etc. in each direction. They also climb back to altitude more quickly so you can get more spins in per hour. Not talking a 7ECA Citabria here of course. More like a Super Decathlon, Pitts, or Extra. An Extra is overkill and excessively expensive for this type of training though.

I disagree. The C-172 recovers before you actually get the recovering controls fully input. Just relaxing the pro-spin controls, and it recovers. That can lead to complacency about spins and recovery.

The absolute best plane for spin training is an original configuration PA-38, Piper Tomahawk. The original configuration had outboard stall strips ONLY. Later, they added inboard ones. The spin entry is very dramatic, basically a half turn snap roll to inverted, then the nose falls through.

I have spun C-150/2, C-172, several flavors of Citabria and Decathlon, J-3 Cub, CAP-10, Pitts S-2 (A and B), Great Lakes, Grob 103 glider, T-34 and T-37.
 
I disagree. The C-172 recovers before you actually get the recovering controls fully input. Just relaxing the pro-spin controls, and it recovers. That can lead to complacency about spins and recovery.

I don't disagree, but I was specifically responding to the previous comment asking why learn spin recovery in an aerobatic airplane when it won't be precisely the same as teaching or encountering spins in a 172. My comment wasn't directed at the reverse situation you describe.

But almost any purpose-built aerobatic airplane will recover any spin mode by simply relaxing or neutralizing all controls. It's actually an important emergency spin recovery technique for aerobatic pilots to know, since unlike the standard PARE method, it doesn't require the pilot to recognize the direction of the spin or whether it's upright or inverted...which for anyone who thinks this is always easy to recognize, has never experienced the full range of situations you can find yourself in while doing acro. Of course this is getting off topic.

For the normal and very rudimentary level CFI spin training, the PARE recovery method is proper and I agree some airplanes don't reinforce the PARE inputs since the spin pops out so quickly.
 
I would also agree that something “more spinnable” than a 172 that won’t stay in spins “should” be used from a practical standpoint…the recoveries that I’ve had to do with students have been from a full-flap snap roll in a 152 (I stopped the rotation when we were nearly inverted) and a couple of full cross-controlled skids at 400 feet or so on final in an Archer that broke into rotation. I don’t know that spin recoveries in a 172 would prepare one for those.

Granted, the requirement is merely a legal one, not a practical one, and it’s akin to the 51-mile cross country that everybody seems to want to do.
 
I did flights of <60NM XC to satisfy the requirements…then promptly flew way longer because I wanted to. I anticipate the same here. Unless my 10 complex hours can incorporate spins. Two birds with one stone? That would be nice!
 
I did flights of <60NM XC to satisfy the requirements…then promptly flew way longer because I wanted to. I anticipate the same here. Unless my 10 complex hours can incorporate spins. Two birds with one stone? That would be nice!
I can’t think of any complex airplanes offhand that are spinnable, although they probably exist. ;)
 
I understand that aerobatic aircraft will better demonstrate fully developed stalls, but if you never plan on instructing in a Pitts, Extra, or Citabria, why do your spin training in them?

I agree that it’s good to experience flying aerobatics in a aerobatic aircraft, but show me the data that suggests spin recovery training in a Citabria will lead to better outcomes in recovering from an inadvertent spin in a Cessna, than having done spin training in a Cessna in the first place?

I agree, I think this one the FAA has got right. Stall Spin Prevention is what we need to be focusing on. The problem with Inadvertent Spins is they usually happen at Low altitude, and unless the pilot is expecting it, it is unlikely the pilot will recover once the wing breaks into the Spin Entry. Every Airplane I have flown will easily recover in the 1st 1/2 rotation by just moving the sitck/yoke forward. Don't need to know much about spin recovery other than move the yoke/stick forward and it will recover unless you let the spin develop. But if do that spin entry to low to recover, it really doesn't matter how much you know about Spin recoveries. Which comes back to the FAA stance, rather than have a lot of Skill in Spin Recovery, Have the knowledge and experience to recognize the potential for an Inadvertent stall spin to begin with and avoid it.

Brian
CFIIG/ASEL
 
I agree that it’s good to experience flying aerobatics in a aerobatic aircraft, but show me the data that suggests spin recovery training in a Citabria will lead to better outcomes in recovering from an inadvertent spin in a Cessna, than having done spin training in a Cessna in the first place?

That's fine, if you only plan on flying Cessnas for the rest of your life.

I agree, I think this one the FAA has got right. Stall Spin Prevention is what we need to be focusing on...rather than have a lot of Skill in Spin Recovery, Have the knowledge and experience to recognize the potential for an Inadvertent stall spin to begin with and avoid it.

Yes and no. Yes, the goal is to prevent inadvertent spins. But the student who's experienced the full sequence, from a skidding turn or whatever into a fully developed spin, will understand it much better than the one who only practices stalls and recovers at the first hint of a buffet with the admonition "don't do that."
 
That's fine, if you only plan on flying Cessnas for the rest of your life......Yes and no. Yes, the goal is to prevent inadvertent spins. But the student who's experienced the full sequence, from a skidding turn or whatever into a fully developed spin, will understand it much better than the one who only practices stalls and recovers at the first hint of a buffet with the admonition "don't do that."
Exactly. The 172 is far too forgiving to show a student what can happen in a skidding base-to-final turn, for example. The Citabria (or even better, an old Champ) will not let the student get away with it. When doing the taildragger checkouts in the Citabria, sometimes a student would try to tighten the base-to-final turn using rudder and holding the inside wing up so the bank wouldn't steepen. As soon as I saw that ball off-center, I took control and we'd go up to altitude and do exactly that, but with three thousand feet below us. The airplane would roll promptly into the spin, and we'd recover. It shocked the student and he/she never skidded that turn again.

I had an inclinometer attached to the front spar carrythrough where we instructors could see it from the back seat. Can't see the TC from back there.

Intensity: one of the Seven Learning factors.
 
The 172 is far too forgiving to show a student what can happen in a skidding base-to-final turn, for example.
Kind of what happened to me in the Archer…students had gotten just proficient enough in slips to pass their Private checkrides. They came to me to try and finish up their instrument training before the end of the school year. I had them take their hoods off at MDA, and neither one started descending to the runway until their touchdown point would have been beyond halfway down the runway. I suggested a slip, and both of them kicked rudder to the floor, then tried to pick the wing up with full aileron, and pulled the nose up. We were almost 90 degrees bank when by the time I stopped it.

Of course, even with “intensity”, I’m a slow learner…it happened twice before I quit taking students who learned to fly at the school they came from. :rolleyes:
 
You are literally the WORST! Now I’m going to be SO disappointed in my pitiful piston spin training!

:lol::lol:

What makes it the worst is I have flown into Santa Fe several times and haven't done anything like that myself.!!
 
I took an older straight tail model 172 out for some spin training and it would not break and rotate without a bunch of power and a fairly nose high attitude.

When I finally did get a good spin entry out of it, it rolled over inverted and was happy to spin... That was "exciting" enough for one day and it was a good exercise in spin recovery.

I have access to a Square tail, I should go try it for comparison.

"Happy to spin", how much rotation did you get out of it before you or it recovered?

Brian
 
That's fine, if you only plan on flying Cessnas for the rest of your life.

If I plan on instructing in a Citabria, I'm going to get checked out to teach in a citabria, which as an aerobatic aircraft, that would include stall recovery, correct?
 
If I plan on instructing in a Citabria, I'm going to get checked out to teach in a citabria, which as an aerobatic aircraft, that would include stall recovery, correct?
IF you get an actual checkout, stall recovery could/should be included.
 
I can’t think of any complex airplanes offhand that are spinnable, although they probably exist. ;)

Thera are High Performance aircraft that are spinnable though. And even tailwheel.

Knock off three things. HP, TW, and CFI Spin. And some aerobatics to fill things out.
 
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