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Turn Stall Training - Why don't we do it?

The stall syllabus during my training and also during refreshers or check rides always consisted of three identical situations: low speed stall, approach stall & full power stall. All three situation were initiated with the wings levelled. The exercise is easy and the instructor happy. But when I browse through accident reports involving a stall, I cannot think of one approach or take-off stall that didn’t involve a turn. Surely there are such incidents, but due to the increasing complexity of aerodynamics during a turn it only makes sense that more stall accidents involve turns. Especially when in the pattern and thus at low altitude, slow speed, lots of turns, high stress, a stall during a turn can be very deadly. So why don’t we practice stalls during turns?

EDDH, Germany

Because they occur mostly in the final turn. A stall there is most likely not recoverable (certainly not an asymmetrical stall), thus training does not change the outcome and is therefore not sensible.

Bremen (EDWQ), Germany

You mean not recoverable purely due to the lack of altitude? Then I would still like to practice it and if it’s just for awareness reasons. Or does the C172 suddenly become an uncontrollable monster in a turn stall that would make it dangerous and even grossly negligent to practice such at normal air work altitude?

EDDH, Germany

I don’t know where you do/did your training (guessing Germany) but the stalls checked during initial skills test and revalidation/renewal in the UK are:

Clean stall – recover when instructed.
Full flap stall with some power – recover at first symptom.
Stall in turn with intermediate flap configuration and some power – recover on first symptom.

If the candidate recovers too early, the examiner will reset the scenario and push the symptoms a little further.

In other words, the “turn stall” is most certainly tested in the UK and most SEPs are recoverable well within the 300-500ft one would expect to have between base and final.

Last Edited by Dave_Phillips at 03 Jan 17:20
Fly safely
Various UK. Operate throughout Europe and Middle East, United Kingdom

Andi wrote:

So why don’t we practice stalls during turns?

AFAIK, it is practised in the UK as part of the PPL syllabus and sometimes tested in the skill test (called base to final stall?)

I don’t think if any sort of training will help for a recovery bellow 500ft, I don’t think it has to do with complexity of aerodynamics of the turn or the recovery…

Even low-level aerobatic champions will tend to train > 500ft, others who don’t have nerves of steel will just pull the stick when taken by surprise at 300ft, I think this what explains what you see in the accident reports…after all it is just a matter of pushing the stick forward (unload the wing) to recover from a stalled turn to a normal turn? you don’t need wing level if you have what it takes to push the stick

Last Edited by Ibra at 03 Jan 17:47
EGSX, United Kingdom

Good question. I remember on my first flight review asking to do precisely this, an accelerated stall. I think it’s a good idea to to try at altitude because it illustrates how the stall speed increases with bank. Doing stalls straight and level can give you false confidence a low air speeds.

Tököl LHTL

Ibra wrote:

AFAIK, it is practised in the UK as part of the PPL syllabus and sometimes tested in the skill test (called base to final stall?)

I don’t think if any sort of training will help for a recovery bellow 500ft, I don’t think it has to do with complexity of aerodynamics of the turn or the recovery…

With my examiner’s hat on, it is a mandated element of the UK skills test. From the Flight examiners Handbook

Stalling:
Recovery from:
 Clean, S&L power off, recovering from the stalled condition
 Base Turn using intermediate flap, gear, approach power and 20°-30° AOB recovering at the first sign of the approaching stall
 Final Approach stall, full flap, gear, approach power on a datum heading recovering at the first sign of the approaching stall all with minimum height loss back to the best rate of climb, clean.

I disagree about chance of recovery. I we step aside from the fact that someone has actually managed to get to that scenario, the loss of height during recovery is in the order of 100ft.

Fly safely
Various UK. Operate throughout Europe and Middle East, United Kingdom

Dave_Phillips wrote:

In other words, the “turn stall” is most certainly tested in the UK and most SEPs are recoverable well within the 300-500ft one would expect to have between base and final.

Ibra wrote:

after all it is just a matter of pushing the stick forward (unload the wing) to recover from a stalled turn to a normal turn

If you recover – as the exercise requires – to “recover at the first indication of a stall” (stall warner or buffet), no problem, that works. But if the wing actually stalls, the aircraft will do a flick-roll into a spin, and this can be surprisingly quick.

I lost around 1,000ft when, during exactly that exercise, a student managed to do just that – and a C152 of all things! He wasn’t particularly mishandling the aircraft, either, just a bit slow to react to the stall warner.

There is a reason that exercise typically requires a height sufficient to recover at or above 2,000ft AGL when it goes well, with 3,000ft recommended.

Biggin Hill

Dave_Phillips wrote:

I we step aside from the fact that someone has actually managed to get to that scenario

I think that is what matters most to explain the stats, how you get there? not the lack of of training or emphasis on recognition/recovery in PPL syllabus…

I don’t think people get there due to inadequacy of PPL training but something like a mix of watching SD for noise abatement, looking for traffic, high crosswind on base leg and busy radio may get someone there?

You can argue, this is easily mitigated by experience but I am not sure if any addition to the PPL training will help? say 10 min briefing with instructor on each circuit TEMs?

Cobalt wrote:

There is a reason that exercise typically requires a height sufficient to recover at or above 2,000ft AGL when it goes well, with 3,000ft recommended.

Not just how much height loss, I flew as pax with someone doing aerobatics to 600ft minima on figures and 50ft on low passes, I don’t think there was room to overcome my instincts or doing anything rational that low if flying by myself…

Last Edited by Ibra at 03 Jan 18:41
EGSX, United Kingdom

a_kraut wrote:

Because they occur mostly in the final turn. A stall there is most likely not recoverable (certainly not an asymmetrical stall), thus training does not change the outcome and is therefore not sensible.

but stalling wings level somewhere on final is ?

On my check ride for PPL I had to do a stall while turning. IMO there is only so much you can squeeze into basic training. Maybe it is better to focus on the very basic, do that well, rather than spread out on all and every eventualities. This doesn’t mean there is any particular reason why one thing is thought and other things aren’t. If we had to learn every bit about flying in PPL training, we would never finish.

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