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Uptapplicant2019

Struggled in UPT?

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Currently at Vance about halfway through T-6s and recently hooked two flights in a row resulting in being put on flying CAP (commanders awareness program). Getting off altitude from poor trim and being task saturated in the pattern drove the unsats. 
 

I’m just hoping to hear some stories from guys that got their wings after struggling during UPT and what actions did you take to improve?

I spend hours chair flying every day, but something just hasn’t clicked yet.

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Chair fly with a classmate acting as instructor/atc/distractions/other planes in the pattern where they make conflicts- like they normally occur.

Keep practicing/chairflying, but not at your own pace- have a classmate check/push you around. Wash, rinse, repeat. Distractions and performance challenges happen- you have to recocognize and accomodate without losing a step.

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Like @moosepileit said. Another thing that helped me is I would sit down with a white board and break things down by drawing out each step. This simplified things for me and I would then piece them together. CAP isn’t a bad thing as it lets you fly with the more experienced IPs. However, you don’t want stay there forever. Also, don’t be afraid to speak to your Flt/CC if you’re not meshing with an IP and you learn more from another. I was on CAP in 38s and learned a lot from my designated IPS. 

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had the same problem in T6s, solution for me was to pick an out base that was a bit of a cruise to get to.. gave me time to really just focus on trimming hands off and getting a better feel for the jet. also make sure you’re not using more than a few fingers on the stick

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I heard a story about a dude/dudette that failed every checkride in UPT. (Obviously not the 89 rides.)

Hopefully that is some motivation.

 

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Remember that practice doesn’t make perfect, perfect practice makes perfect. From what you’re telling me, you sound like you haven’t grasped the control and performance concept yet. Really nail those known pitch and power settings and trim the control forces off from there. NEVER lead with trim or you’ll spend all of your time fighting that and making it worse.

And knowing nothing about you other than what you wrote, I’d be willing to bet you spend a lot of time talking while you’re flying. I see so many young guys talking through every action they’re doing because they think it demonstrates superior GK to the IP and that it should help them. STFU! Learning to fly and talk is really an IP level skill in crew airplanes that a lot of people struggle with. If you put your brain bytes toward listening/talking on the radio, looking out the cockpit to build spatial SA, cross-checking your instruments (not stare  at them), and shacking those control and performance concepts I talked about earlier, it will help you.

Last thing is to evaluate your perspective on UPT. What I mean by that is you’re living out your dream here and getting a chance to show what you’ve got. Each sortie is a chance to excel and get better, not a minefield you’ll hopefully survive. CAP is a good thing for the development of confidence. You’ll get focused instruction and help on what you need and will start excelling before you know it. 
 

FWIW, I know guys that are flying basically every MWS in the USAF (myself included) that were on CAP at some point. Don’t sweat it.

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1 hour ago, Orbit said:

I heard a story about a dude/dudette that failed every checkride in UPT. (Obviously not the 89 rides.)

Hopefully that is some motivation.

 

Hey, I passed the last one!

CAP isn't a bad thing. It got to the point in my T-6 flight where all but me and another student were on CAP. We all made it. 

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11 minutes ago, Danger41 said:

Remember that practice doesn’t make perfect, perfect practice makes perfect. From what you’re telling me, you sound like you haven’t grasped the control and performance concept yet. Really nail those known pitch and power settings and trim the control forces off from there. NEVER lead with trim or you’ll spend all of your time fighting that and making it worse.

And knowing nothing about you other than what you wrote, I’d be willing to bet you spend a lot of time talking while you’re flying. I see so many young guys talking through every action they’re doing because they think it demonstrates superior GK to the IP and that it should help them. STFU! Learning to fly and talk is really an IP level skill in crew airplanes that a lot of people struggle with. If you put your brain bytes toward listening/talking on the radio, looking out the cockpit to build spatial SA, cross-checking your instruments (not stare  at them), and shacking those control and performance concepts I talked about earlier, it will help you.

Last thing is to evaluate your perspective on UPT. What I mean by that is you’re living out your dream here and getting a chance to show what you’ve got. Each sortie is a chance to excel and get better, not a minefield you’ll hopefully survive. CAP is a good thing for the development of confidence. You’ll get focused instruction and help on what you need and will start excelling before you know it. 
 

FWIW, I know guys that are flying basically every MWS in the USAF (myself included) that were on CAP at some point. Don’t sweat it.

You weirdly nailed the talking/trim pieces, I do talk when I fly. I’ll stop doing that and use my minimal brain bits on something useful. 
 

The responses make me feel better about it, I’ve been pretty devastated that I’m not picking it up faster. 

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It's impossible to wash out of UPT these days so you'll probably be fine

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3 hours ago, Uptapplicant2019 said:

Currently at Vance about halfway through T-6s and recently hooked two flights in a row resulting in being put on flying CAP (commanders awareness program). Getting off altitude from poor trim and being task saturated in the pattern drove the unsats. 
 

I’m just hoping to hear some stories from guys that got their wings after struggling during UPT and what actions did you take to improve?

I spend hours chair flying every day, but something just hasn’t clicked yet.

PM sent.

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We had a guy in my class hook all four checkrides in the T-6 and still graduate.  You can do this.  I struggled as well and just chairflew everything with the cockpit printout in front of me (radio calls, where I was turning, what my visual reference was, what pitch and power settings, what switches I was flipping, etc.).  If you have to think in flight, you're going to struggle.  Practice the basics until you can do them from muscle memory.  That's what worked for me.  If you're in UPT, then you're talented enough to graduate.  You can do this.  Don't quit.

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I flew the T-6B not A so different panel but hopefully this will still help.  I really starting getting better and feeling comfortable flying it once I learned a good scan.  For me thats 90% of my time looking at VSI and the angle of bank indicator.  Set an appropriate power setting and then trim for 0VSI/0 AOB.  Keep the rudder trimmed and keep a light touch on the stick.  Occasionally crosscheck airspeed/heading/altitude to see if you need to make any small power or attitude changes.  Once you get stabilized you won't even need to spend much time looking at instruments which now gives you more time to look elsewhere like the HSI or approach plate (or outside the aircraft!).  And by that point you'll have more and more SA and will be able to stay ahead of the plane.  

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6 hours ago, Uptapplicant2019 said:

Currently at Vance about halfway through T-6s and recently hooked two flights in a row resulting in being put on flying CAP (commanders awareness program). Getting off altitude from poor trim and being task saturated in the pattern drove the unsats. 
 

I’m just hoping to hear some stories from guys that got their wings after struggling during UPT and what actions did you take to improve?

I spend hours chair flying every day, but something just hasn’t clicked yet.

Relax.  Had plenty of students go on CAP and plenty of students got off of CAP.  Some of the best students I ever had went on CAP, people have bad days, it happens.  One of my best students had a few bad days and ended up on CAP, and because he was dwelling on it so much he kept messing up and performing poorly.  Eventually I sat him down, told him to chill out, go home and be with his family and to not even think about the T-6 or open a book that night, basically just go relax and have fun.  Next day the kid came back and flew an amazing sortie.  The key is not to dwell on it.  The more you dwell on it and focus on trying to be perfect the worse your performance will be.  Take the lesson, learn from it and move on.  More people than you will ever know have been on CAP, whether in UPT, or IFF, or B-Course.  Good luck and don't get down on yourself, you'll survive.

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4 hours ago, BADFNZ said:

It's impossible to wash out of UPT these days so you'll probably be fine

You’re not wrong!

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I flew the T-6B not A so different panel but hopefully this will still help.  I really starting getting better and feeling comfortable flying it once I learned a good scan.  For me thats 90% of my time looking at VSI and the angle of bank indicator.  Set an appropriate power setting and then trim for 0VSI/0 AOB.  Keep the rudder trimmed and keep a light touch on the stick.  Occasionally crosscheck airspeed/heading/altitude to see if you need to make any small power or attitude changes.  Once you get stabilized you won't even need to spend much time looking at instruments which now gives you more time to look elsewhere like the HSI or approach plate (or outside the aircraft!).  And by that point you'll have more and more SA and will be able to stay ahead of the plane.  

 

This is one of the most horrible things I’ve ever read.

 

~Bendy

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Baseops Network mobile app

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4 hours ago, MIDN said:

I flew the T-6B not A so different panel but hopefully this will still help.  I really starting getting better and feeling comfortable flying it once I learned a good scan.  For me thats 90% of my time looking at VSI and the angle of bank indicator.  Set an appropriate power setting and then trim for 0VSI/0 AOB.  Keep the rudder trimmed and keep a light touch on the stick.  Occasionally crosscheck airspeed/heading/altitude to see if you need to make any small power or attitude changes.  Once you get stabilized you won't even need to spend much time looking at instruments which now gives you more time to look elsewhere like the HSI or approach plate (or outside the aircraft!).  And by that point you'll have more and more SA and will be able to stay ahead of the plane.  

That whole part about control and performance concept I mentioned is basically the opposite of this.

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I think 2/3 of my flight was on CAP at one point.  I hooked a boatload of rides pre-solo.  Got to the serious praying stage for a bit.  It worked out.  I eventually "got it" enough to do decently on daily rides, 2nd best in checkrides, and got my first choice at track select.  

Exercise and eat decently.  Get enough sleep! I realized I need about 6hrs for academics, but 7 or more to fly decently (part of my pre-solo issue).  

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I flew the T-6B not A so different panel but hopefully this will still help.  I really starting getting better and feeling comfortable flying it once I learned a good scan.  For me thats 90% of my time looking at VSI and the angle of bank indicator.  Set an appropriate power setting and then trim for 0VSI/0 AOB.  Keep the rudder trimmed and keep a light touch on the stick.  Occasionally crosscheck airspeed/heading/altitude to see if you need to make any small power or attitude changes.  Once you get stabilized you won't even need to spend much time looking at instruments which now gives you more time to look elsewhere like the HSI or approach plate (or outside the aircraft!).  And by that point you'll have more and more SA and will be able to stay ahead of the plane.  


Is this how they teach navy folks how to fly? 90% at the VSI and occasionally at everything else? Perhaps the T6B and it’s fancy HUD requires a different flying technique.


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19 hours ago, Uptapplicant2019 said:

Currently at Vance about halfway through T-6s and recently hooked two flights in a row resulting in being put on flying CAP (commanders awareness program). Getting off altitude from poor trim and being task saturated in the pattern drove the unsats. 
 

I’m just hoping to hear some stories from guys that got their wings after struggling during UPT and what actions did you take to improve?

I spend hours chair flying every day, but something just hasn’t clicked yet.

I hooked my first T-6 checkride, up to that point in my short aviation career that was the first thing I hooked. Next ride went fine, and so did the next phase. Come end of block I got so nervous about my next check ride, and after my first hook I was sweating bullets, and not my normal relaxed self, mentally it messed with me, and sure enough I hooked the next one. 3rd checkride I flew with a great IP, who was a total bro in the brief and not asshole like the previous two I had. It got me to relax, which paid off, once we got in the air the  airport I was going to for my instrument checkride had shut down, I heard ATC tell this to someone a couple minutes ahead of me and made the decision to go to my back up plan. Worked out fine. For awhile I always got super nervous for a checkride, more than most people, especially considering I’m pretty laid back most of the time. That mostly is gone now many years later, but to get over that anxiety I realized the biggest thing is just to relax and have fun. Fly it like you stole it everyday, find some good pump up songs or airplane porn videos and take a 5 minute pump up session before each flight, get stoked to go fly, and don’t sweat it. As said above, if you are struggling a bit CAP isn’t a bad thing for you. Hopefully they get you with some great IPs that can get you the tools you need for success. 
 

Also, what Danger said about the pitch and power, makes life hella of a lot easier, once you get it down you can look like boss and shack your perimeters everytime. I do not recommend the VSI/roll indicator thing, never had heard of that before, not sure if he is serious or trolling. Only time I ever look at VSI is during a decent to gauge if I want to increase or decrease my rate to make a point, also helpful for a nice stable non precision step down. Other than that a pretty much forget it’s there 95% of the time 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, viper154 said:

I hooked my first T-6 checkride, up to that point in my short aviation career that was the first thing I hooked. Next ride went fine, and so did the next phase. Come end of block I got so nervous about my next check ride, and after my first hook I was sweating bullets, and not my normal relaxed self, mentally it messed with me, and sure enough I hooked the next one. 3rd checkride I flew with a great IP, who was a total bro in the brief and not asshole like the previous two I had. It got me to relax, which paid off, once we got in the air the  airport I was going to for my instrument checkride had shut down, I heard ATC tell this to someone a couple minutes ahead of me and made the decision to go to my back up plan. Worked out fine. For awhile I always got super nervous for a checkride, more than most people, especially considering I’m pretty laid back most of the time. That mostly is gone now many years later, but to get over that anxiety I realized the biggest thing is just to relax and have fun. Fly it like you stole it everyday, find some good pump up songs or airplane porn videos and take a 5 minute pump up session before each flight, get stoked to go fly, and don’t sweat it. As said above, if you are struggling a bit CAP isn’t a bad thing for you. Hopefully they get you with some great IPs that can get you the tools you need for success. 
 

Also, what Danger said about the pitch and power, makes life hella of a lot easier, once you get it down you can look like boss and shack your perimeters everytime. I do not recommend the VSI/roll indicator thing, never had heard of that before, not sure if he is serious or trolling. Only time I ever look at VSI is during a decent to gauge if I want to increase or decrease my rate to make a point, also helpful for a nice stable non precision step down. Other than that a pretty much forget it’s there 95% of the time 

I've noticed a few REALLY old guys are big on VSI and roll indicator when they teach instruments. However I've never met an instructor that didn't teach attitude indicator 90% of the time. (Or visual references if you're vfr) 

Edited by FLEA
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Known pitch power settings is where you want to start (memorize them for whatever airspeeds you fly around at, for cruise / pattern etc... I don't really remember for the T-6).  Look outside at the horizon and freeze the picture of level flight in your head (cross checking the altimeter / VSI).  Just like you freeze your aimpoint on final in the canopy, same concept.  Then trim it all out.  Repeat.  Eventually you'll have a flight path marker in your HUD / fancy autopilot help / better avionics to help out...  same sitting height every time will help as well.  Once you hit instruments you'll freeze the sight picture that gives you level flight on the ADI, which is harder.

Chairflying will help reduce brain bytes used on other admin.

Good luck!!

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I absolutely will not contradict the "stop talking while flying" advice.  But when chairflying, I found it helped me to verbalize every detail of what I was doing at each phase of flight.  Doing so forced me to recognize where my knowledge of pitch/power settings, local pattern rules, etc was lacking.

Example: once I hit 1300' I will turn left to Wizard.  (bad.)  Better: At 1300' or 1.3 DME, whichever is first, I will turn left to 160 to intercept the KDLF R-170.  I will maintain 10 deg NH and 100% power until 2250' - I will start my power reduction and level off at 2250' to have 0 deg NH and 55% power set, 200 KIAS at 2500'.   Etc.

If it doesn't sound good to you, forget it.  I found that if I could remember (and visualize!) doing all that at groundspeed zero that my muscle memory and habit patterns would help compensate for my helmet fire in the plane.

Any yeah, keep looking outside, because in the long run that will be the least brain cells way to maintain altitude, airspeed and heading.

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Look outside. Listen to the engine. Keep the ball in the middle until you can feel yaw in the seat. Trim until you can control with minute inputs. Be deliberate but smooth.  Learn all the intellectual stuff the IPs say.  Most of all, fly the airplane first. 
 

You'll be fine. 

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