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The Humpty Bump

A ‘Humpty Bump’ is an aerobatic figure that comprises of two straight lines joined by a looping element. The lines can be either vertical or 45° lines and can start going up or down. Depending on the aerobatic level, there are often plenty of embellishments ensuring the K factor is high. Many Humpty Bumps will have a […]

Centre of Gravity Track (CGT) & Zero Lift Axis (ZLA)

To judge aerobatics we look at the aircraft and measure either the imaginary line it draws (Centre of Gravity Track) or the direction the aircraft is pointing along the aircrafts axis (Zero Lift Axis). We therefore need to understand these two concepts and then understand which to apply and when.     Centre of Gravity Track […]

Slow Roll or Aileron Rolls

In this post I will discuss how to fly an aerobatic slow roll in the horizontal, 45º and vertical plane following the CIVA judging criteria.  Slow rolls are often referred to as aileron rolls to distinguish them from ‘flick’ or ‘snap’ rolls (something I will discuss in a separate post). The main difference being that in […]

Formation Flying with the British Aerobatic Academy by Robert Hunter

We are at 2000 feet, G-EEEK, the British Aerobatic Association’s Extra 200 flying straight and level, buffeted slightly by unseen turbulence.    I am concentrating hard, trying to stay one step ahead of my aircraft.   Limited though my skills are, flying straight and level would not ordinarily be that much of a problem.  But […]

The Stall Turn or Hammerhead

The stall turn is a magnificent aerobatic figure.  It looks graceful and elegant when flown well but is actually very challenging to fly perfectly and the further up the aerobatic ladder you go, the more challenging it becomes with ever more difficult embellishments and energy management issues. The vanilla stall turn has a k factor of […]

Pre CPL and IR Hour Building

Getting your hour building strategy right is a perfect way of to give yourself a fantastic foundation on which to build your entire flying career. If done optimally, it is a great way to  improve your flying skills ready for CPL and IR training. Avoid just hiring the cheapest plane and flying around until you have accumulated the […]

Extra 200 Start Procedure

This is a quick guide to the startup and line up checks for the Extra 200. Learning these checks will help when converting to the Extra. Pre-Start Procedure (cold) Canopy closed and locked Harness tight Headset on Flight Controls – Check Full and Free Movement Fuel to Centre tank (horizontal) Propeller Fully Fine (Pushed in) […]

Navigation – Using Mental Dead Reckoning to Calculate Drift

The Dalton Computer or Whiz Wheel is certainly a very good tool, perhaps better than an electronic calculator because it is visual and allows you to check your answers “by inspection”.  A much easier technique however, is Mental Dead Reckoning.  With practice MDR is easy and quick. In this short blog, I will develop the theory from the […]

Navigation – Intro to MDR

In addition to aerobatic training, we teach other flying skills including Navigation. We even deliver PPL training aiming for the quality end of the market rather than a quick skim through to gain a “boy scout badge” only to lack sufficient confidence to enjoy flying later. As I have a background in navigation, it seems natural to […]

How to Fly a Loop

In aerobatics, all manoeuvres stem from just a few “prime” figures and the loop is probably the most important of these since it is most prevalent. Even a Stall Turn (Hammer Head for our colonial cousins) incorporates a quarter loop at entry and exit. If you are to succeed in aerobatic competitions, it is therefore essential […]