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Thread: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

  1. Default DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    Just a question re the DC-3

    When should the Tail wheel be LOCKED and when should it be OFF. ?

    At the moment I lock it just before I am about to take off, and when I land, and I unlock it , when I am Taxing around the airport . Is this how it is done on the real aircraft ?


  2. Default RE: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    Thats how I do it. It seems logical :)

  3. #3

    Default RE: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    Yes, that's how it is supposed to be done according to the real world checklist. Unlocked while taxiing, once lined up on the runway, lock it and takeoff fly around and land. Once you've completed the rollout, unlock it to taxi again.

    "Radial engines don't leak oil....they're just marking their territory"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Norwich, Norfolk, UK.

    Default RE: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    I can't seem to steer the DC3 after landing turning joystick or F11/F12 just turns in circles any ideas or do I need to RTFM again.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

    Default RE: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    To make a right turn, let's say, you need to press F12 to start the turn, tap F12 as necessary to maintain turn (once you get it turning at the right radius you don't need to hold F12), and then use F11 to straighten out, but you probably already know this... :) I dunno how fast you're moving when you make these turns, but it helps if you're going slow (5-7 knots)...

    I believe the only times I've had the DC3 (or any taildragger) do a ground 360 is when I've tried to turn at too high ground speed and just plain lose control.

    Hope this helps. :)

  6. Default RE: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    I'm getting better at taxing with the "differential brakes" but I miss the easy taxing with tailwheel steering such as the DC3 in FS2K2. Has anyone come up with a patch that will allow the same in FS9?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Caracas, Venezuela.

    Default RE: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    There's an easy solution, for the Ford Trimotor your aircraft.cfg, go to the section "contact points", first line, column number 7, it says 180..change that number to 60 and you'll be able to taxi much more easy..hope this helps



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Clearwater, Florida

    Default RE: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    I've found that the only way I can really taxi the DC-3 through controlled turns is to do the following:

    Bring up the wide screen (W) view with the mini-panel. Hit F-4 to bring up the throttle assembly and adjust its size so all levers are clearly visible and accessable to the mouse pointer, but not obstructing your forward view. When trying to turn LEFT, idle the left engine and gently apply power as needed with the mouse to the right engine throttle while simultaneously tapping F-11 (left wheel brake) as required, until the plane approaches the direction you want it to go. Pull power back on the right engine with the mouse. Apply necessary power to both engines (I use F-2 and F-3 keys) while taxing in a straight line.

    To make right turns, reverse the above procedure and use F-12 instead of F-11.

    If you taxi slowly it will be much easier to maintain directional control. Keep in mind that it is similar to backing up your car. The taildragger is steering from the "wrong" end, which can result in rapid swerves off into the bushes if going too fast. A "ground loop".


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Brighton, UK.

    Default RE: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    In addition to the advice above I unnllock the tailwheel only when likely to make tight turns. Small corrections can still be made using differential brakes when the tailwheel is locked and, with practice, the lock only needs to be unlocked for greater than 45 degree turns.


  10. Default RE: DC-3 - Tail Wheel locking/unlocking

    The only small note I would add is it is recommended that you lock the tailwheel, for takeoff, while still rolling forward during line-up. When a taildragger stops there is no guarantee the castering tailwheel is straight and you may be locking it at an angle. Locking while still rolling in the proper direction ensures it's straight.

    Don't know if this can happen in FS9...but "as real as it gets!" ;)

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