Why do CFIs discourage midfield crosswind?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by hish747, Apr 11, 2019.

  1. FlySince9

    FlySince9 En-Route

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    I thought I was gonna see we were on page 900 from one of the previous ones.... But I’ll bite...

    For the OP: IMHO there is nothing wrong with a mid-field cross. It’s no more dangerous than any other. I think it’s more common than any other cross-wind entry, and I would argue that it is safer than others. No matter where/how you enter, some nutcase barreling NORDO into the pattern can spoil your day, regardless. That said, when I call CWMF I actually cross almost at the departure threshold. That gives me a view of anything on the runway and more closely conforms to the traditional cross wind entry. Plus, unlike the traditional cross wind, this method keeps you clear of departures as very few aircraft are gonna be at pattern altitude by that point. But always clear upwind as you pass over and turn to downwind.
     
  2. timwinters

    timwinters Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    There ya go!
     
  3. Bill Jennings

    Bill Jennings Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Synthetic or dyno? N2 or air? .45ACP or 9mm? Mayo or Miracle Whip? Ginger or Mary Ann? Jeannie or Samantha? Emacs or Vi? High wing or low wing? Breast or chicken wing? Concealed carry or open carry?
     
  4. timwinters

    timwinters Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Why do you assume anything said here is meant to be taken seriously? :eek:
     
  5. timwinters

    timwinters Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Oberle Sausage or...

    well, there is nothing else that compares. That's one non-arguable!
     
  6. Clip4

    Clip4 En-Route

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    Show them the new AC and tell them as a CFI they are supposed to be current.
     
  7. Dave S.

    Dave S. Pre-takeoff checklist

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    As a controller I am always, ALWAYS trying to keep everything as close to the same as possible. At any given moment, the same pattern, same flow, same turnouts, etc. this changes from moment to moment but the idea is that it is usually when someone does something different from everybody else that problems arise. It is always when someone does something different that we have to really be alert. There are several good reasons not to be different in the pattern...

    1. You are essentially entering the downwind at a 90 degree angle in the middle of the leg. There is a recommended 45 degree entry we are all familiar with.
    2. You are climbing up not the downwind which is not where the other guy is typically looking for other aircraft
    3, the most dangerous place to drive is through an intersection because of converging traffic. By making an early turnout and intersecting downwind you unnecessarily create a crossing scenario.
    4. Your instructor is there to teach you his best knowledge. As a student you follow these techniques until you get your own ticket.
    5. I’d be a lot more precise as a CFII. I’d tell you do not turn out early and stay with the flow, period. I’d try to explain and if my student didn’t agree...oh well.

    Why do you want to turn out early anyway? To save a little time? To get more touch and gos in?

    It is not as safe and you should not do it as a rule. In flying, if you have a choice between one thing and another always choose the safer of the two

    tex
     
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  8. Dave Theisen

    Dave Theisen En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Everyone is eligible for a ten mile straight in, but that’s another conversation. :)
     
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  9. WannFly

    WannFly En-Route

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    That’s what I was taught
     
  10. timwinters

    timwinters Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    As an aside, most midair collisions in the airport environment occur on final. This is why I always fly my finals at a 45* angle. Don't have to worry about hitting anyone that way.
     
  11. gdwindowpane

    gdwindowpane Pre-takeoff checklist PoA Supporter

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    I think mid-field cross wind entries would be fine as long as it is preceded by ATITAPA. ;)
     
  12. Hank S

    Hank S En-Route

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    It's a recommended pattern entry, published by the FAA. You should start expecting it.

    I was taught the midfield crossover entry as a Student Pilot in 2006, and use it regularly. At busy fields, I may well do a midfield upwind on a 45, whatever it takes to join in as seamlessly as possible.

    The point is, regardless of method, look outside, listen, communicate and don't barge into the pattern.
     
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  13. sarangan

    sarangan Line Up and Wait

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    On advantage of the midfield entry is you can look down at the field as you pass over. Might give you a better picture of anything unusual on the runway. I learned to fly in Canada, so I like the midfield entry.
     
  14. LDJones

    LDJones Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Not sure when this nonsense started but I continue to teach it’s a valid entry method and do so at pattern altitude to better see traffic and avoid descending onto someone. That said, I also teach if the pattern is exceptionally busy, there may be better alternatives. And straight-ins also have their place. I think we’ve had a dumbing down of flight instruction in the last forty years.
     
  15. Sonoran

    Sonoran Filing Flight Plan

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    As I understand the recommendation for the preferred midfield entry it's to descend to pattern altitude on the 2mi outleg before making the 270 deg turn to the 45. There's no recommendation for a descending turn: "When well clear of the pattern—approximately 2 miles—scan carefully for traffic, descend to pattern altitude, then turn right to enter at 45° to the downwind leg at midfield."
     
  16. John221us

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    I have been nearly hit before by a plane descending down on me on downwind. Fortunately my passenger (also a pilot) saw his shadow and we were able to take evasive action (he came within 5 feet of contact). We were talking, but he was not.
     
  17. Walboy

    Walboy Line Up and Wait

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    This is what the FAA recommends which is what I think you're saying.

    Midfield Pattern Entries.JPG
     
  18. brcase

    brcase Pattern Altitude

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    I agree, it seems many of the pilots doing the mid-field crossing to the 45 seem to miss the 2 mile recommendation the FAA recommends.

    Brian
     
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  19. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    The last thing I want to see or hear is someone entering the pattern on the crosswind when I am taking off. I'm in a nose high, slow regime, trying to gain altitude, then I am most likely turning, again, nose high (relative to cruise) with my wing blocking the path someone entering crosswind would be flying. No thanks, I'll fly cross wind mid field if I'm coming in and hear no interfering traffic on the radio nor see any problem when I get close enough. If there is an issue, I'll over fly at altitude then descend and turn a mile or two from the airport and do a normal 45 entry when it's safe.
     
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  20. SkyHog

    SkyHog Touchdown! Greaser!

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    How in the world did this almost create 2 midair collisions? The only way I can see the midfield crosswind being even kind of dangerous is if the pilot insists on doing it 500ft above pattern altitude instead of just turning directly onto downwind. You can see the pattern the whole time....

    /Headscratch
     
  21. Witmo

    Witmo Pattern Altitude

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    I have seen many aircraft able to get to pattern altitude by the end of a 4000' runway. Heck, the towplane I fly can do it when there's no glider behind me.
     
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  22. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    What are you flying that you are at pattern altitude 2500' down the runway from where you start your take off roll?

    Also, I can see you even if I fly crosswind crossing the numbers.
     
  23. MacFlier

    MacFlier Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I've been taught the first option and I've done it a couple of times.
    But the DPE that did my checkride, said basically that the tear drop entry might put you in the path of turboprop or other faster aircraft with wider patterns. The DPE mentioned that it would be better to do the 2nd option or, even better, join the pattern on the x-wind leg as you can see departure traffic and people are expecting aircraft to be on xwind leg more than midfield.

    I haven't had a chance to do that entry yet but I'll run that by my CFI to see what he says.
     
  24. Witmo

    Witmo Pattern Altitude

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    Any entry can experience a midair if you don't see the traffic. I know, you have perfect eyesight and will see every airplane withing a five mile radius of the airfield every single time ...I used to think the same way until I didn't see the cub off my wing less than 100 feet away. I often join on a midfield xwind but I am especially vigilant for traffic entering on the 45 or already established on the downwind 'cuz i'm heading to possibly the same point in space on the downwind. My head is on a swivel and I'll be talkin' on the radio to ensure I have everybody who might be a conflict in sight. If someone made a radio call and he's a potential conflict I'll turn away from the pattern until I'm sure he's no factor. Oftentimes someone calls in and he's actually much farther out than he says. Recently I was established on downwind when someone announced a two mile straight in. I extended, and extended, and extended, and finally saw him come into sight four miles out.
     
  25. IK04

    IK04 Line Up and Wait

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  26. tspear

    tspear Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    What about an overhead break when coming in opposite? I actually like it, burn off speed, sets you up perfectly on downwind....

    You need to fly to larger airports. Where I did my initial training around DC there are a lot of 4+K runways. That Cessna 172/182 is at TPA by the end of the runway; or close enough to not matter. Crossing by the departure end of the runway is significantly more dangerous than most people think.

    Tim
     
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  27. IK04

    IK04 Line Up and Wait

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    That is how I taught it and only used it to overfly the field to observe the wind direction indicator (sock, tee or tet) and then fly away from the pattern and do all the descending and turning outside the downwind leg. If I knew the landing direction from hearing traffic or an advisory from UNICOM, then I would maneuver into the 45 degree entry to midfield downwind while inbound and not overfly the field at all...

    I always thought it took more work and patience, but then all good things do. :D
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2019
  28. Larry in TN

    Larry in TN Cleared for Takeoff

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    I didn't read through this whole thread, but...

    The reason many CFIs discourage midfield crosswinds is that THEIR instructor(s) discouraged midfield crosswinds.
     
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  29. IK04

    IK04 Line Up and Wait

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    While established on a midfield downwind at pattern altitude, the last hing I would expect would be an airplane at my nine o'clock and same altitude. Especially when that "pilot" called three miles North to enter on the downwind...

    I guess since it is only done at "pilot controlled airports," and people get away with it, it is rationalized as "safe."

    Whatever... I'm not going to do it and now I'll be looking for traffic where I thing they should be and where they shouldn't be.

    Life was so much simpler in helicopters...
     
  30. FlySince9

    FlySince9 En-Route

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    I need to fly at larger airports? Gee... do they make airports with 4K runways... Wow! who'd-a known?
     
  31. Somedudeintn

    Somedudeintn Cleared for Takeoff

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    I think that is the big problem. I missed this early in my flying. If the pattern is busy I think this is a good entry IF flown correctly.
     
  32. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

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    It's interesting. I first noticed the FAA's change of heart at a WINGS seminar at which a scenario was presented to show how "bad" the teardrop entry was incomparison to the crosswind to downwind - a scenario involving three aircraft that sounded a lot like your DPE's comment to you.

    I was about to mention that the "bad" entry was exactly the one the FAA wanted but decided to check the AFH first. Lo! and Behold! The cross-wind-to-downwind was offially sanctioned in the most recent edition.

    I wonder how it came about but suspect it was points just like the scenarios I saw and your DPE gave you which "pressured" the FAA into it although, as we can see, it was kind of halfheartedly done. Interestingly similar to the FAA finally sanctioning "control/performance" as a legitimate paradigm for instrument interpretation along with its beloved primary/supporting one.
     
  33. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    I was in a SR 22 today, and was pretty close to pattern altitude at the end of a 5,000 foot runway, at least it felt that way. I didn't pay attention to the exact number, but I would not be happy climbing seeing an airplane on an intersecting course even if we miss by a few hundred feet. Most of the runways around here are at least 4,000 feet. Yes there are shorter ones, but most of my landings are at the longer ones.
     
  34. IK04

    IK04 Line Up and Wait

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    I won a bet once that I could be at 3,000 feet at the departure end of the runway.

    Any STOL airplane can do that easy...
     
  35. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    2nd reply to a legitimate question, and you are already calling him stupid.
    The only reason that bothers me is I have other stupid questions that I am now afraid to ask.
     
  36. DaleB

    DaleB En-Route

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    It's interesting to see this argument -- err, discussion. Crossing midfield at pattern altitude is absolutely the norm at my home field, and pretty much everywhere else I've been around here. Every CFI I have flown with has done it and taught it. Maybe it's a regional thing to some degree. That said, I am learning the overhead.
     
  37. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Not going to be an issue because I'm going to see you and be above you and/or behind you. And if I think you're really skittish I just won't say anything on the radio. :eek: :D
     
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  38. dtuuri

    dtuuri En-Route

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    Paul, if airplanes didn't enter on a crosswind at all, but entered an upwind on a 45° or like this, wouldn't you be able to see them and wait until they clear?

    aim0403_Auto16.png
     
  39. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    If you don't have your transponder on and no adsb, then you are right, I won't see you. If you see me and avoid then I am probably none the wiser. ;)


    I think that happens to more of us more often then we think (not in the pattern but flying around). Had a few "close" encounters yesterday flying around, nothing close to dangerous, but with the closest we crossed paths, he was 500 feet above and I'm sure never saw us. We were doing flight following, the controller pointed him out, wasn't talking to him. We saw him, went lower, then he turned over us. Times like that is why I am absolutely not a believer in the "big sky" theory.
     
  40. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    I look around the pattern before I take off. Generally final gets the most attention, then ahead of me during the take off roll. Not sure I would notice someone on the upwind unless they were talking. My experience, which is not as much as many of you, is that someone flying upwind will be talking and turn mid field if someone is taking off, unless someone is on down wind. But when it happens every one is cooperative. I've be flying out of a controlled field for the last year with most of flights talking to ATC while I got my instrument rating. I'm out of training mode for a little while now and need to start thinking more about this stuff as I'll be going into more uncontrolled fields.