Tiedown Sense Part 2




Tiedown Sense

Part 2  

Stake-driven tiedowns such as depicted above will almost invariably pull out when the ground becomes soaked from torrential rains which accompany hurricanes and some thunderstorms. Tiedown ropes capable of resisting a pull of approximately 3,000 pounds should he used. Manila ropes should be inspected periodically for mildew and rot. Nylon or dacron tiedown ropes are preferred over manila ropes. The objection to manila rope is that it shrinks when wet, is subject to mildew and rot, and has considerably less tensile strength than either nylon or dacron. Securing aircraft.

Tie only at the tiedown rings provided for that purpose. Never tie to a strut itself. The practice of tying to lift struts has in itself caused frequent damage. Ropes slip to a point when even slight pressure may bend the struts. Allow for about 1 inch of movement, and remember that manila rope shrinks when it gets wet . Too much slack will allow the aircraft to jerk against the ropes. Avoid tightening the ropes too much. Tight tiedown ropes actually put inverted flight stresses on the aircraft, and many of them are not designed to take such loads. A tiedown rope holds no better than the knot. Anti-slip knots such as a bowline or a square knot are quickly tied, and easy to untie.


All flight controls should be locked or tied to prevent their banging against the stops. sane aircraft are equipped with integral gust locks operable from the cock- pit. On others, it may be necessary to use external padded battens (control surface locks) or secure the control wheel and rudder pedals in- side the cockpit. When using external surface locks, it is advisable that red streamers, weights, or a line to the tiedown anchor be fastened to the locks.

This will provide a means of alerting airport service employees and pilots to remember to remove the external locks prior to takeoff . Secure ailerons and rudders in neutral. Tailwheel type aircraft headed into the wind should have their elevators secured in the "up" position by securing the control column or "stick". Tailwheel type aircraft "tailed" into the wind should have their elevators secured in the "down" position by securing the control column or "stick". Set and lock wheel brakes.

Chocks should be placed and secured fore and aft each wheel. Wooden chocks may be secured by nailing a cleat from chock to chock on each side of each wheel. Ropes may be substituted if wood cleats are unavailable. A brick or piece of 2 x 4 are poor excuses for good chocks. On tricycle gear aircraft, secure a tiedown line through the nose-gear tiedown ring. In addition, secure the middle of a length of rope to the tiedown ring in the tail section. Pull. each end of the rope away at a 45° angle and secure to ground anchors at each side of the tail. Elevators should be secured parallel to the ground (neutral position). It is good practice to also secure the flaps, especially if the aircraft is tailed into the wind.
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