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Thread: Tailwheel endorsement

  1. #1

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    Tailwheel endorsement

    My son and I were discussing tailwheel endorsement for an aircraft such as a Tiger Moth.
    I say yes it's needed, but he shows me FAR 61.31 which says tailwheel, and doesn't mention tailskid.
    Am I right, because a Tiger Moth is not a tricycle gear, or does he have a valid point in his interpretation of the the FAR?

    (i) Additional training required for operating tailwheel airplanes. (1) Except as provided in paragraph (i)(2) of this section, no person may act as pilot in command of a tailwheel airplane unless that person has received and logged flight training from an authorized instructor in a tailwheel airplane and received an endorsement in the personís logbook from an authorized instructor who found the person proficient in the operation of a tailwheel airplane. The flight training must include at least the following maneuvers and procedures: (i) Normal and crosswind takeoffs and landings; (ii) Wheel landings (unless the manufacturer has recommended against such landings); and (iii) Go-around procedures. (2) The training and endorsement required by paragraph (i)(1) of this section is not required if the person logged pilot-in-command time in a tailwheel airplane before April 15, 1991.

  2. #2
    lnuss's Avatar
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    or does he have a valid point in his interpretation of the the FAR?
    I don't think so. I think that's just looking for a loophole and can get you in trouble, both legally and operationally.

    While I haven't seen an official FAA "opinion" on this, I'd be very surprised if a tail skid were not categorized under the tailwheel requirements, since the reason for having a tailwheel endorsement in the first place is to learn the behavior of an aircraft with the CG behind the main wheels, as opposed to the trigear location of the CG in front of the main wheels. It's to keep people out of trouble. There really IS a big difference.

    Larry N.

  3. #3
    melann's Avatar
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    There are still a few places where "logic" is required.
    Mel, DAR since the Last Century, Specializing in Light-Sport and Experimental Aircraft. Certificated over 1,000 Light-Sport & Experimental aircraft.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by lnuss View Post
    I don't think so. I think that's just looking for a loophole and can get you in trouble, both legally and operationally.

    While I haven't seen an official FAA "opinion" on this, I'd be very surprised if a tail skid were not categorized under the tailwheel requirements, since the reason for having a tailwheel endorsement in the first place is to learn the behavior of an aircraft with the CG behind the main wheels, as opposed to the trigear location of the CG in front of the main wheels. It's to keep people out of trouble. There really IS a big difference.
    That's my thinking also.

  5. #5
    Dana's Avatar
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    Legally, I think you could make a good argument that a tailskid aircraft is not a "tailwheel airplane" per 61.31. But that probably wouldn't stop the FAA from taking action against you if you groundloop it and don't have the required endorsement, and it wouldn't be smart to fly one without the appropriate training.

    The Tiger Moth I flew, and most I've seen, have tailwheels.

  6. #6

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    Look up:
    AC 61-65H

  7. #7
    lnuss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Berson View Post
    Look up:
    AC 61-65H
    That just refers you to 61.31, but FAR or not, there is PHYSICAL trouble you get into without adequate training when the CG is behind the main gear. I've transitioned a lot of people to tailwheels, so this is experience speaking -- it's a problem, and not worth trying to find a "legal" loophole, which just shows poor judgement, one of the biggest pilot killers.
    Last edited by lnuss; 07-28-2022 at 12:27 PM.

    Larry N.

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