The following will always be true, regardless of the airplane's attitude in relation to the earth:
1. When back pressure is applied to the
elevator control, the airplane's nose rises in relation to the pilot.
2. When forward pressure is applied to the elevator control, the airplane's nose lowers in relation to the pilot.
3. When right pressure is applied to the aileron control, the airplane's right wing lowers in relation to the pilot.
4. When left pressure is applied to the aileron control, the airplane's left wing lowers in relation to the pilot.
5. When pressure is applied to the right rudder pedal, the airplane's nose moves to the right in relation to the pilot.
6. When pressure is applied to the left rudder pedal, the airplane's nose moves to the left in relation to the pilot.
The preceding explanations should prevent the beginning pilot from thinking in terms of "up" or "down" in respect to the earth, which is only a relative state to the pilot. It will also make understanding of the functions of the controls much easier, particularly when performing steep banked turns and the more advanced maneuvers. Consequently, the pilot must be able to properly determine the control application required to place the airplane in any attitude or flight condition that is desired.
Coordinated use of ALL controls is extremely important in any turn. Applying aileron pressure is necessary to place the airplane in the desired angle of bank, while simultaneous application of rudder pressure is required to counteract the resultant adverse yaw. During a turn, the angle of attack must be increased by application of elevator pressure because more lift is required than when in straight and level flight. The steeper the turn, the more back elevator pressure is needed.
After the bank and turn are established, the airplane may continue in a constant turn when all pressure on the ailerons and rudder is released, or it may require some opposite aileron to prevent the bank angle from increasing. It may also require continued aileron pressure in the direction of turn to prevent returning to the wings level attitude. This will be discussed in more detail in the chapter on Basic Flight Maneuvers.
After learning how the airplane will react when the flight
controls are used, the pilot must learn how to use them properly. Rough
and erratic usage of all or any one of the controls will cause the airplane
to react accordingly; therefore, the pilot must form the habit of applying
pressures smoothly and evenly.
The amount of force the airflow exerts on a control surface is governed by the airspeed and the degree that the surface is moved out of its neutral or streamlined position. Since the airspeed will not be the same in all maneuvers, the actual amount the control surfaces are moved is of little importance; but it is important that the pilot maneuver the airplane by applying sufficient control pressures to obtain a desired result, regardless of how far the control surfaces are actually moved.
The pilot's feet should rest comfortably against the rudder pedals. Both heels should support the weight of the feet on the cockpit floor with the ball of each foot touching the individual rudder pedals The legs and feet should not be tense; they must be relaxed just as when driving an automobile.
When using the rudder pedals, pressure should be applied smoothly and evenly by pressing with the ball of one foot just as when using the brakes of an automobile. Since the rudder pedals are interconnected and act in opposite directions, when pressure is applied to one pedal, pressure on the other must be relaxed proportionally. When the rudder pedal must be moved significantly, heavy pressure changes should be made by applying the pressure with the ball of the foot while the heels slide along the cockpit floor. Remember, the ball of each foot must rest comfortably on the rudder pedals so that even slight pressure changes can be felt.
During flight, it is the pressure the pilot exerts on the control stick or wheel and rudder pedals that causes the airplane to move about its axes. When a control surface is moved out of its streamlined position (even slightly ), the air flowing past it will exert a force against it and will try to return it to its streamlined position. It is this force that the pilot feels as pressure on the control stick or wheel and the rudder pedals.