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Sensation Of Touchdown

Wed Feb 16, 2005 4:40 am

Witch airplane do you think makes the smoothest landings? I think it would have to be the 747. The least would have to be 767.

Also, do you think that where you sit in an Aircraft has to do with how you feel the landing. I'm wondering what a pilot in a 747 is feeling during touchdown.
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Wed Feb 16, 2005 5:34 am

Depends on the landing conditions and the skills of the pilot IMO...

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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Wed Feb 16, 2005 9:24 am

Yes, (mainly) on larger aircraft you'll feel the landing differently in certain places around the cabin.

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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Wed Feb 16, 2005 11:33 am

Gruman Millard-73. Atleast when you land on land. Flew it to FLL with Chalks. Wow what a smooth landing. Did not even noticed we toched.
"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Wed Feb 16, 2005 12:03 pm

you can feel the tire when sitting in the rear on touchdown

you sit in front of the wings, you feel less effect on touchdown of the Future
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Wed Feb 16, 2005 12:20 pm

Why is it that you feel the tuchdown less when your in front. In the 747 I was in the back and it was smooth.
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sun Feb 20, 2005 1:37 am

Smoothest landing by far is on the A330! much better than the 747. Hardest landings and harshest breaking always seems to be on the A320!

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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sun Feb 20, 2005 9:10 pm

Just arrived back on US Airways A330-300, (PHL - LGW), was sitting in the very last row at the back, strong crosswinds etc, but was the smoothest landing ever, hardly felt a bump, think where you sit makes a difference, if you sit close to the undercarriage you feel the landing much more  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Fri Feb 25, 2005 7:44 am

I agree with Thom@s... much of this is subjective to conditions, pilot skill, aircraft condition and the particular passenger's sensitivity.

The three best touchdowns I've been in:
3. An Eastern Airlines L1011 flight from MCO-JFK. Beautiful widebody with one of the earliest flight control systems.
2. A Southwest Airlines 737 flight from LAS-ABQ. We came in over the desert and glided in on the thermals. At that time there wasn't much development on the west mesa so the descent could be made very gradually.
1. The best: a Continental Airlines 737-300 flight from CLE-PHL, late July 2000. The conditions were absolutely horrid that night (severe thunderstorms complete with hail) and my flight to ABE was cancelled (scheduled to be on a Continental Express B1900.) I was rebooked to PHL and we went up into the clouds and bounced around for a while. When we came in for a landing at PHL, the clouds were still very low and as a result I didn't know how close we were to the ground until we were almost over the numbers. The pilot absolutely greased the landing -- I didn't even feel the usual "grab" of the wheels but did feel the brakes. Even so, the landing was smooth as silk.
Up, up and away!
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Fri Feb 25, 2005 9:54 am

I never know when I've landed, I don't wake up until we're at the gate unless it's a truely awful landing. Although, coming into DTW last Sunday, in a bad snow storm, I was awake because I was aware of connections that were going to be a problem. The NWA DC-9 pilot did an absolutely beautiful landing (this was the FNT flight that circled and circled, the one that left FNT at 1:40PM) -- whoever that pilot is deserves a medal -- conditions were bad, he kept the passengers updated constantly, and it was a beautiful touchdown, when he braked, you could feel the slide, then he released -- a very professional job

That was a top pilot, and I'd like to let NWA know (tried thru their web site, and got the 'normal' -- we'll read your message later response), so any NWA crew, ramp, etc on here, please pass this on the the pilot of the 1:38 PM out of FNT, last Sunday, to DTW
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Thu Mar 10, 2005 11:35 pm

I find the A330's have a smooth landing, even in the nastiest conditions. As much as I like the 767, I haven't had a smooth landing in one yet, and I've had many landings in them. The worst (or best 'cause it was so much fun) was last year coming into YVR from AMS with KL. We were landing on 08L with a slight crosswind, we were over the runway as the pilot flared the a/c and he must have really got caught in the ground effect 'cause we were just gliding down the runway, not sinking, not climbing, just gliding and loosing speed. All of a sudden we dropped like a sack of rocks and hit the runway so hard I thought the landing gear struts were gonna pop through the wings!
When we got to the gate, I stuck around a bit to watch and sure enough the flight crew stepped out and took a look at the gear. A couple of weeks later, I flew back to AMS and same thing, but that one I'll blame on the weather and not the 767 'cause it was a NASTY day in AMS, there must have been at least a dozen people throwin' up on the approach. Poor F/A's!
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Fri Mar 11, 2005 12:05 am

One nice landing sensation is when you're in the middle seats in the first rows on a widebody - e.g. in an MD-11 just above the nose wheel. Usually you feel very little of the main landing gear touching down, but all the more when the nose wheel touches the runway...
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sat Mar 12, 2005 8:08 am

Truly, an evaluation of the smoothest landing aircraft would require a statistical design. As Thom@s and others mentioned, conditions will play a huge role. You would have to have had at least something like 10 flights on several types of aircraft in various conditions to draw any inference regarding how they compare. Choosing how to break down the conditions under which these landings were made into categories for direct comparison of the smoothness factor would be a big part of the statistical design. Variations in your body sensitivity (e.g., just waking up vs. being alert) also play a critical role. In short, while some flight control designs may render a certain type more prone to a hard landing than another, this sounds a bit like smoke and mirrors to me.

"The deeper you go, the higher you fly. The higher you fly, the deeper you go."
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sat Mar 12, 2005 9:11 am

Funnily, my smoothest landing ever was on a B767 if AA at JFK - you didn;t feel ANYthing. But it really depends on many factors, including piloting, weather, surface of runway, etc...
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sat Mar 12, 2005 10:49 am

Smoothest landing I ever had was a CO 733 from Belize-IAH.

I've had some soft ones in 767's too.
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Mon Mar 14, 2005 10:28 am

I wonder if passengers on AA plane that landed way short of runway in Denver (not too long ago) did feel the plane tire hitting landing lights and instruments???

Someone mentioned that the crew was NOT aware that they actually hit something while landing! and that the airport ground personnel found it out later... of the Future
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Mon Mar 14, 2005 3:41 pm

Smoothest: UA 763 HNL August '01. Pilot had the engines at idle from 10 miles out on final, if you weren't watching you'd never even know we were down.

Worst: US (express... don't know which operator) Beech 1900 GON September '95. It was a dark and stormy night... only flight on that aircraft, but from what I've heard every landing in those things stinks.
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sun Mar 27, 2005 5:00 am

Best: Landing in a BA 744 JNB-LHR, I didn't even realize we had landed! We just seemed to glide down the runway, and of course no reverse thrust!

Worst: AA 752 PHX-DFW a few weeks ago, whacked the bird on the runway, and the guy next to me was asleep, when we hit the tarmac he woke up with a start! He basically shrieked!

Was very strange indeed!

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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sun Mar 27, 2005 6:08 am

Not quite sure about smooth landings but the tough ones are experienced on A320's

Happy Landings :)
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sun Mar 27, 2005 9:42 am

I've noticed it really dosen't depend on the aircraft as much as it does the weather and flight crew.
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Mon Mar 28, 2005 2:12 pm

Started flying transports 25 years ago.

Smooth landing are a combination of weight, wind, runway condition, approach and luck. A few observations on aircraft types I've flown:

B727-100 the bottom can fall out from underneath you even after a perfect approach. You've got to push just prior to touchdown.
B727-200 same as 727-100
B737-200 lands like a big Piper Cub
B737-300 and 400 lands flat but smooth landings are commonplace
B757-200 same as 737-300 and 400
B767-200 main gear trucks dangle at a nose down attitude requiring you to fly it on flat or you'll plant it.
FK-28 Easy to land well
FK-100 hard to buy a good landing
C-5A Easy and Smooth
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Mon Mar 28, 2005 9:27 pm

I find the 767 the heardest, due to the config of its main gears. I have always really slammed down in the 767s!

Smoothest would have to be the A330,

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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sun Apr 03, 2005 5:53 am

I hate all touchdowns.
You know why?
Because it means you are landing!  weeping 
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RE: Sensation Of Touchdown

Sun Apr 03, 2005 7:51 am

Don't know about the smoothest landings, but the hardest would have to be the Piper PA-28... when I'm flying it! spin 

Long live the A330!

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