Definitions

A left stuck pedal is a condition where too much nose-left thrust is being produced by the tail rotor, causing uncontrollable leftward yaw.

Objective(s)

Recognize the signs of a left stuck pedal and understand the recovery procedure.

Description

  • Recognition of stuck left pedal
  • Recovery procedure

Instructional aids

  • Lucky Left – Rotten Right

Recognition

  • A stuck left pedal is most likely to be recognized during high-power configurations (eg, during departure or transitioning from a maximum performance take-off)
  • As power is reduced, an uncommanded left yaw will develop (cannot be corrected with right pedal)

Avoidance and recovery

  • Procedure 1–Landing without enough power to hover
    • The power setting during the departure phase produces a no-yaw condition–the goal is to match this power setting during the landing
    • This may be enough power to establish a hover, or to keep the aircraft aligned with the ground track for a run-on landing
    • Maintain airspeed (eg, 60 KIAS) and fly a low pattern; the nose will be yawed left
    • Decelerate during the approach using aft cyclic
    • Apply collective to decelerate, maintain altitude, and alignment with the ground track
    • With the nose aligned, allow the aircraft to make ground contact

    Procedure 2–Landing with enough power to hover

    • If the helicopter is completely decelerated and at 2-5′ AGL, landing can be accomplished by slowly lowering the collective
    • Throttle can be adjusted to maintain alignment (reducing engine RPMs will decrease the TR thrust)
    • Landing with a right crosswind can help counteract the excessive left yaw

Real-life advice and experience

  • None specified

Additional resources

Note that this looks like a Eurocopter, which uses a clockwise-rotating MR. The left yaw at the termination of the landing may indicate that he had the equivalent of a stuck right pedal.

Enstrom-Screenshot