View Full Version : lock TailWheel?

09-15-2003, 02:04 PM
Ok.. I give up..

Anyone care to tell me the benifits of, and when to lock the tailwheel?

I've never seemed to bother, and I'd like to know what it is supposed to achieve (other than the obvious!).


09-15-2003, 02:04 PM
Ok.. I give up..

Anyone care to tell me the benifits of, and when to lock the tailwheel?

I've never seemed to bother, and I'd like to know what it is supposed to achieve (other than the obvious!).


09-15-2003, 02:07 PM
I read in a BOB book how the Hurri pilots would lock their tail wheel in flight for better performance, so I do /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif . Although I have no idea what it does in flight or if it`s even modelled in the sim.

On the ground I sometimes do it to keep steady on take off. Again I`m not sure if it actually works!

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09-15-2003, 02:07 PM
it seems that it would help one slow the A/C when landing, its funny now that you've mentioned this cause i've never given any thought to it, i've seen the option but never really used it. i'll have to give it a try. /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif


09-15-2003, 02:11 PM
Glad to hear it's not just me then! /i/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif )

09-15-2003, 02:16 PM
I do on takeoff. It seems to help me w/ taxi.If I'm not mistaken it locks it in straight position so the plane doesnt yaw so bad from the torque.

"We make war that we may live in peace."


09-15-2003, 02:27 PM
It also kept the tail wheel in the same direction as the air flow thereby reducing turbulence at the tail surfaces. Another benefit about it is that it kept the tail wheel from castoring on take off and landing if it did it may cause the tail to "fish tail" on the rumway. In RL this can lead to a ground loop on landing and a disaster. On planes that had the wheel linked mechanicly to the rudder it was a slightly smaller problem.


Lead Whiner for the P-47-30 and Hvars

09-15-2003, 02:50 PM
According to a few "educational movies" for fighter- and bomberpilots I saw online at a site somewhere, they all lock the tailwheel when taking off, so I guess that is the major point, making the take-offs more secure.


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09-15-2003, 11:20 PM
erm i think manual says itll lock wheel straight, or to rudder, depending on hte plane

09-15-2003, 11:45 PM
It seemed to have a more noticeable effect in IL2 than in FB. In IL2, I remember needing to use it on takeoff. Not anymore.

The F4U Corsair won the war!!!


09-16-2003, 12:02 AM
I lock it prior to touchdown.
Of course it doesn't do anything until your tail has touched the ground and if you have botched the landing by then it won't help you really.
After that it seems to help slow me down.
I never did take the time to figure out if it does indeed help or not.
I just lock it on final aproach anyway.


09-16-2003, 12:49 AM
I usually lock it on take off, and leave it locked until after landing. The only thing is that the few times i've forgotten to lock it, i didn't really notice a difference. Also, if you lock it and then try to turn there doesn't seem to be much of a difference. If it's locked the wheel doesn't actually turn, so it might work and just have very little effect, i'm not sure.

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248th VFS

09-16-2003, 12:52 AM
It makes a difference in IL2. Fb it dont matter.

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09-16-2003, 01:03 AM
In RL, tailwheel should be locked while taking-off and landing, in order to keep a/c direction as straight as possible.
Also while flying the tailwheel should be locked since in an a/c where it is not rectractable it would start to vibrate like a flag, and in those with retractable tailwheel it would make problems while entering in the fuselage.
On the other hand, during taxiing the tailwheel should be unlocked to let the plane make sharp turns.
However, the tailwheel doesn't seem to be modelled in FB: you can see on ext. view when it's locked or unlocked, but that does not seem to affect a/c behavior...

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09-16-2003, 01:08 AM
oh dear ..

locking the tail wheel does just that .. the little wheel under the tail is locked so that it does not "caster" any more but points straight ahead at all times making turns while taxi-ing harder.

The reason for this is to prevent the tail moving around from prop wash and wind gusts.

In the game it makes some difference on normal takeoff ... helping you stay straight ... but not a lot.

Wher it does help in game is taking off in thunderstorms.

Locking the tail wheel makes thunderstorm takeoff justludicrously hard rather than suicidally impossible http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

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09-16-2003, 02:24 AM
Deathsledge wrote:
- it seems that it would help one slow the A/C when
- landing,

Um, the wheel continues to roll. Otherwise you would blow out the tire!


"We will welcome them with bullets and shoes."

09-16-2003, 06:16 AM
Actually, the only purpose of locking the tailwheelin the real world is to allow it to retract properly into the gear doors. It serves no function to prevent a ground loop or help keep the aircraft aligned with the runway (as soon as you get into the power the tail is light enough to drift even with it locked, and it comes up quicikly). Aircraft that do not have retractable tailwheels do not have locking tailwheels. In this sim where no damage occurs no matter what the orientation of the wheel is, there is no need to worry about locking the tailwheel.

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Pattuglia Acrobatica Virtuale