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IFR Lesson Guides - Constant Airspeed

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Three phases of an instrument rating

1. Climbs - Entry from Normal Cruise Airspeed 

a. Enter constant airspeed climb from normal cruise airspeed. 
b. As the climb power and climb pitch attitude are established, the attitude indicator becomes primary for pitch at the approximate climb attitude. At this time, the manifold pressure (or tachometer) is primary for power. The vertical-speed indicator will show an immediate upward trend and will stop on a rate appropriate to the stabilized airspeed and attitude. The airspeed indicator becomes primary for pitch when the airspeed stabilizes on a constant value. 
c. Emphasize trim as power and pitch are changed. 
d. Demonstrate the use of the vertical-speed indicator as an aid in maintaining a desired airspeed by adjusting the pitch attitude on the attitude indicator to change the vertical-speed 200 feet per minute to gain or lose 5 knots in airspeed. 
e. In climbs as well as in level flight, the vertical-speed indicator is used as an aid in pitch control. 
2. Level-off from Climbs at Cruise Airspeed 
a. Lead the altitude by approximately ten percent of the vertical speed shown, i.e., for 500 feet per minute, use a 50-foot lead. 
b. As the level-off is started, the altimeter becomes primary for pitch. 
c. Cross-check the attitude indicator, the altimeter, and vertical-speed indicator. 
d. Leave the power at climbing power until the airspeed approaches normal cruise airspeed, adjusting pitch as necessary to maintain altitude. 
e. Emphasize trim. 
3. Student Practice - Enter climbs from normal cruise airspeed and level-off at normal cruise airspeed: 
a. With all available instruments. 
b. Without the attitude indicator and heading indicator. 
4. Climbs - Entry from Climb Airspeed 
a. As the power is increased to climb power, the airspeed indicator immediately becomes primary for pitch. 
b. As power is increased, adjust the pitch attitude on the attitude indicator to maintain a constant airspeed. 
c. Use the relationship between the airspeed and the vertical-speed for pitch control. 
5. Level-Off from Climbs at Climb Airspeed 
a. Lead the altitude by approximately ten percent of the vertical speed. 
b. As the level-off is started, the altimeter becomes primary for pitch. 
c. Simultaneously lower pitch attitude and reduce power to maintain altitude and airspeed. 
d. Trim. 
6. Student Practice - Enter climbs from climb airspeed and level off at climb airspeed: 
a. With all available instruments. 
b. Without the attitude indicator and heading indicator. 
7. Descents - Entry 
a. Reduce power to descending power setting. Maintain altitude until the airspeed approaches descending airspeed. 
b. When the airspeed approaches that desired, the airspeed indicator becomes primary for pitch and remains so throughout the descent. Adjust pitch attitude to maintain airspeed. This establishes the descent. 
c. Demonstrate the use of the vertical-speed indicator as an aid in maintaining the desired airspeed by adjusting the pitch attitude on the attitude indicator to change the vertical speed 200 feet per minute to gain or lose 5 knots in airspeed. 
8. Level-Off from Descents at Cruise Airspeed 
a. At approximately 150 feet above the desired altitude, advance power to cruise power setting. 
b. The vertical-speed indicator is primary for pitch until the normal lead for level-off is reached. At this time, the altimeter becomes primary for pitch. Properly executed, cruise airspeed should be reached as the level off is completed. 
c. Trim is particularly important, since the nose tends to rise when the power is applied. 
9. Level-Off from Descents at Descent Airspeed 
a. At approximately 50 feet above the desired altitude, advance the power to a setting which will hold the airspeed constant. Simultaneously adjust pitch attitude to maintain airspeed. 
b. As the level-off is started, the altimeter becomes primary for pitch and the airspeed indicator becomes primary for power. 
c. Trim. 
10. Student Practice - Enter descents and execute level-off from descents at cruising and descending airspeed: 
a. With all available instruments. 
b. Without the attitude indicator and heading indicator.

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