340s and spoilers

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  • #84809

    Ok, I did it today. I landed my 340 with the spoilers out. Yes, by mistake.

    What happened? Nothing, the 340 felt like wanting more power, that is all. The wheels touched smoothly.

    I thought it was going to be something bad if one day it happened, but it is nothing to worry about. Yes with both engines working I know.

    The spoilers out indicator lights are out of view. Bad thing. They should be above in front of you. My 340 have them just above the prop controls. No good.

    #103167
    quote RENRIQUEZ:

    The spoilers out indicator lights are out of view. Bad thing. They should be above in front of you. My 340 have them just above the prop controls. No good.

    This is why I pay attention to how I design my panel and where I place avionics, switches, and lights. Human factors matter.

    Glad to hear it was no big deal, I would figure as such. Can happen to any of us, I’ve certainly done similar before.

    #103178

    I have done it too. The airplane handles fine. The only issue would be if an engine failed on final.

    #103265

    Rodolfo,

    You’re not the first and you won’t be the last. It also happened to me once before and it was almost a non-event – AND – I have the switch and lights right in front of my nose, so don’t feel bad. 😳

    Sticking to checklists and doing things in order has helped me prevent this from happening again.

    #103266
    sworley
    Participant

      Almost did it once when I was behind a Pilatus and S-turns weren’t enough to keep separation. At some point during the approach I was wondering why in the heck I had so much power in to keep airspeed and then I realized. Not getting expected performance is a good time to go through and check configuration, in any airplane.

      #103268

      It is just another variable in the lift/drag equation. I have not had the spoilers on an aircraft, but I imagine with them out you would just need more power to maintain the same rate of descent as with them retracted. Sometimes I could see a situation landing with them out to improve a short field landing, or even deploying them if you find yourself floating longer than you wish. I just bought my first 340 and I a am going to have spoilers put on just for the extra level of control they offer. You should be able to land an aircraft with and without flaps so why not also with or without spoilers?

      Does everybody out there love their spoilers? I sure see them as a useful tool and it will be my first mod to my aircraft. I know it is not necessary if you plan descents correctly, but having that extra control seems very appealing just like having trim for all axis.

      #103269

      I have own two 340s. One without spoilers.

      I say it is a must having the spoilers on your airplane.

      #103270
      quote GPellar1:

      Does everybody out there love their spoilers? I sure see them as a useful tool and it will be my first mod to my aircraft. I know it is not necessary if you plan descents correctly, but having that extra control seems very appealing just like having trim for all axis.

      I not only love them, where we fly, you couldn’t fly without them – they are a must. In Mexico, in the mountains, I’m routinely “cleared to land” while crossing a ridge at 15K and having to drop down to the runway at 6.2K in the next 10-15 miles.

      Spoilers allow you to descend keeping your speed under control and gradually reducing power. By the way, I normally land with 22.5″ of MP and the time I landed with the spoilers deployed, I had about 2″ more of MP and wondered why the plane was somewhat slow for the configuration. After touch down I turn around and… duh!

      #103298

      As for using the spoilers to get the aircraft down if landing long, GO Around! That’s not what they are for on your airplane. Correct me if I am wrong(310 driver) they are to get you down without having to shock the engines, and that is all they are there for. Using for short field the same, you end up going around and know you have flaps, gear and spoilers to deal with, a lot of drag hanging out there.
      Just my 2 cents worth.

      My company I fly for whenever spoilers/speed brakes are extended we have to keep our hand on the handle till they are stowed. If you need to do something else, just bring your hand back to handle/switch. Easy way to help remember that they are extended.

      Garrett

      #103304
      quote JMAGON:

      As for using the spoilers to get the aircraft down if landing long, GO Around! That’s not what they are for on your airplane. Correct me if I am wrong(310 driver) they are to get you down without having to shock the engines, and that is all they are there for. Using for short field the same, you end up going around and know you have flaps, gear and spoilers to deal with, a lot of drag hanging out there.
      Just my 2 cents worth.

      My company I fly for whenever spoilers/speed brakes are extended we have to keep our hand on the handle till they are stowed. If you need to do something else, just bring your hand back to handle/switch. Easy way to help remember that they are extended.

      Garrett

      The spoilers are not intended to be used for landing – anyone that has done it, I believe has done it by mistake (myself included 😳 ). The spoiler switch is a small Staco type switch with two lights on either side – there is no handle. If you had to keep your hand on the switch while they are deployed on a 10K foot descent @ 1-1.5K feet per minute, you’d be keeping your hand out there for what would seem a long time. There are other ways, including checklists, to make sure you retract them.

      Here’s an arrival I occasionally fly where the spoilers are a must. If coming from the south or west, you typically would come in to the terminal area at least at FL200 (the MEA) and start to be cleared down less than 50nm out. This is busy airspace and without spoilers it would be a tough one to handle – but it also means you will keep them out for at least a few minutes.

      Coming from the TEQ VOR on the TEQ1A Arrival, you will be level @Fl200 until the SERDA intersection. From there you have to drop 4000′ in 14.8 nm to IPSOP and an additional 3000′ in 12.6 nm to ALPES which is the IAF at 13K. Then you’ll be vectored for the ILS and the FAF at 10,600′ also in about a 10-15 nm radius due to mountains, and on down to the field at 8,465 feet. If you are traveling at about 225 knots TAS/GS (160-165 indicated) on the descent and slowing down to 140 for the approach, that’s in excess of 3nm x minute which requires a descent rate of at least 1200 fpm. If you get only a little bit behind things or they delay you due to traffic (been there) then it’s 1.5-2K x minute.

      As you can see, speed, engine and descent management during an IFR approach requires careful planning and makes the spoilers an essential item. You will use them on all of the arrival and possibly into the start of the approach to help you get configured for landing. Add weather and traffic to all this excitement, and you can see how it’s not realistic or even possible to think you’ll be able to keep your hand on the switch all the way to the FAF. If you don’t adhere to checklists, on a single pilot IFR approach it is possible you could forget to retract them.


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      #103313

      Generally speaking, I don’t think our airplanes need spoilers. However, that being said, the approaches that have been shown in Mexico would definitely benefit from them and in that case I can certainly see the logic.

      In my flying, would they be something I added to my airplane? Nope. I’d much rather spend the money on avionics or something else. Twin Cessnas descend pretty darned well without needing spoilers. Heck, you can drop the gear at 174 if you really need to get down in a hurry.

      Don’t feel bad about landing with the spoilers – I took off with the speedbrake deployed on the T28 one time. The speedbrake is deployed with a switch on top of the throttle and I had inadvertently clicked it during my run up and didn’t notice it (there is not an indicator light in the stock airplane, nor in ours, but many operators have added them). The plane flew fine, and I didn’t even notice it until someone called from the ground and made fun of me!

      Robert

      #103319
      quote RCJOHNSON:

      Heck, you can drop the gear at 174 if you really need to get down in a hurry.
      Robert

      In the US on 99% of the approaches I probably agree with you Robert. On the 340, unfortunately the gear speed is 140 – not much help there!

      #103320

      Yeah, the gear and full flap speed in the 310 is 160 MPH, 180 MPH for approach flaps. Classic 310s were 130 MPH.

      Do I need speed brakes? No, and like Robert I’d rather spend the money elsewhere. Would I like them? You bet. That said, the other night I was able to do a good 1300-1500 FPM descent near the top of the green to drop through the icing layer fast.

      #103760
      rpinkowski1
      Participant

        I just stumbled upon this, a little late, I know.
        My home airport is 3000′ paved surrounded by trees and hills. I routinely use spoilers on landing once I am flaring. It is quite simple, without looking, to briefly reach up and trigger them with my thumb. I get a little bit of airframe shudder as the airspeed drops below 80KTAS in the flare that I do not get without the spoilers deployed. Using the full length and the spoilers I use less braking in my 340 than I do in my Aztec.

        Due to runway conditions I am committed to a landing once in the flare, a go around is not a good option. I suppose if there was a deer on the runway (hit a deer on landing in my Aztec several years ago) I would reconsider, therefore I am not at all reluctant to hit the spoilers and it does help to save the brakes, especially if I was a bit fast on final.

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