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Wannabe airline pilots at it again. Maybe XJT will furlough these two.

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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Joisey?WTF?!?
Posts: 786

Captain Toolbox (WARNING! LONG RANT!)
On my last pairing, a four day, I had Captain Snap-on himself, a squat, pretentious FFDO who wore his weapon at every opportunity and rotated in his seat, hand on handgun, each time I opened the cockpit door to go take a leak. Not in and of itself improper behavior, but certainly indicative of the personality I was dealing with. He wasn't to bad at first- good conversation, a few laughs, etc.

All was well until we got a mainline jumpseater in the cockpit, when all of a sudden his hero-complex went into high gear. He starts flight instructing, nit-picking, micromanaging. It was, to my great displeasure, my leg. A tricky gusting crosswind to a short runway, IMC, 600ft ceilings. I rode the autopilot till we broke out, disconnected it once we had visual, dipped below glideslope once the field was assured to make the most of the runway, and carried about 5 extra knots to account for the gusts and the fact that he had set my target speed just under the top of the white arc. "You're 5 knots fast!" he says. "Yup" I said. I crab-and-kick, on centerline, and have a completely normal, albeit gusty and wobbly, flare and touchdown. Then, as the nosewheel is coming down, HE GRABS THE CONTROLS AND YANKS THEM BACK FULL AFT AS THOUGH HE'S "SAVING MY LANDING". I was furious. It was clear to the jumpseater that things had just become 'uncomfortable'. On his way out of the cockpit, the guy shook my hand and said sympathetically, "Good luck!"

Later, after the jumpseater had left, it was plain as rain that I was no longer in an amicable mood. Captain Toolbox tries to justify his actions by telling me that I "was too fast" and "went below glideslope without telling him" and "should enter the slip-to-land at 500 ft." but, he says, "It's the training centers fault, they don't teach you properly, with more experience you'll get it right..." I look at him flatly and say, "Is that all?"

I knew damn good and well the reason for every decision I made on every second of my approach, but there was no point in arguing- his ego was the problem, not my flying, and there was clearly no way that he would be willing to discuss it. In the back of my mind, however, I was thinking: "Mother F'r, you better not make one mistake on the flight back!" Needless to say there was no more conversation.

Justice was sweet!

On the approach in, he has much the same conditions as I did, but it was clear that he was way, WAYYYY behind the aircraft. Like dangerously far behind. Like full-scale glideslope deflection. Like too fast to ever get full flaps in. Like break out with the runway at our 1 o'clock. Does he ever call for a go-around, like he should have? Nope. Did he ever call for the landing checklist? Nope. I actually had to interrupt his non-stop stream of blather to tell the poor flight attendant to be seated for landing, or else it wouldn't have been done. I'll give him this much at least: After we exited the runway, he says to me "Man. And I gave you crap about your flying!" Well, thanks Captain Obvious! I just laughed and said "Yup!"

In retrospect, my ego got in the way too. I should have radioed the tower and announced a go-around, nullifying our landing clearance and our dangerous condition. I'll know better next time. And when I upgrade, I'll also know the extent that CRM directly affects saftey of flight.

I'm open to comments, so please, blast away. What would you have done? What could I have done better? How do you handle guys like that when you fly with them?
CA's will be furloughed? And why should I respond if this is from another site?

I can't resist. How about sterile cockpit below 10 and improper change of controls on landing. IF you fly 5 fast ask 'em to bug the speed.
Don't know if it is this way at all companies. But at mine you fly Vref+5 on final anyways.
Stable approach is defined amoung other things as Target speed +15 /-5 kts (as per XJts CFM)

We use a target of Vref+5. Some times if its gusty or bumpy down low I will just fly a little fast (5 kts).No harm no fowl well within any ones standards. The Capts a tool.
Someone show me where it says that a Jet Aircraft can officially "dip below" the glideslope. At what point is that legal?
UEJ500 said:
Someone show me where it says that a Jet Aircraft can officially "dip below" the glideslope. At what point is that legal?

As long as he's visual, land it in the touchdown zone. How legal is slightly above vs below glideslope? I don't know where that is spelled out.
I'd like to like to see that FO duct-taped to a wall in a crew room somewhere.

I'd also like to see that CA get hired at Atlas and throw his 747 into a slip at 500' AGL. See how well that goes over.
psysix, I believe there is an FAR that clearly states at no time will a jet be operated below glideslope. Your company's performance allows for short runways and - unless you are overweight, you'll make the runway. Would you duck in low at LAX? You might find find a surprise waiting for you down there (wake turbulance).

As for the tool you flew with, I can't help you there. It's unfortunate he chose to be that way regardless of whether or not someone else was there. Some guys are just control freaks. But by trying to fly SOP as much as possible, you don't give the jerk any ammunition for his gun. Small pun intended.
UEJ500 said:
Someone show me where it says that a Jet Aircraft can officially "dip below" the glideslope. At what point is that legal?

91.129 (e)(2)(3) This deals with operation in Class D airspace (which carries over to Class C and B as well) when flying a large or turbine powered airplane. (e)(2) says that while operating a turbine powered airplane to a runway served by an ILS, you must remain on the glideslope between the OM and MM. (e)(3) says if using a VASI you must remain on the glideslope until a lower altitude is necessary for a safe landing.

To be on the conservative side, if I'm about to try and touch down before the 1000' markers, I remain on the glideslope until about 200' AGL (which roughly coincides with the MM) and go lower accordingly from that point. Of course you must consider other factors before doing this, such as wake turbulence, visibility, etc. I am not aware of any opspecs that prohibit this.

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