Normal Take-off


To transition from a hover to a normal climb over a specified ground track.


  • Complete pre-takeoff procedures (pre-takeoff checks, clearing turns, and radio calls).
  • Transition from hover to takeoff configuration.
  • Estimate where aircraft will gain ETL.
  • Apply proper procedures for crosswind departures..

Instructional aids and pre-requisites


  • With the aircraft in a hover and in position for departure, clear the downwind and final approach paths for traffic
  • Conduct a hover power and pre-takeoff checks
  • Make appropriate radio call prior to initiating maneuver
  • Identify a distant reference point to use to maintain ground track
  • Apply gentle forward cyclic and maintain ground track with ATPs
  • As aircraft accelerates to ETL, maintain 5 ΄ altitude by adding forward cyclic
  • When airspeed reaches 45 kias, initiate climb by leveling the aircraft to a 60 kias attitude
  • Trim the aircraft when >50 ΄ AGL
  • Confirm airspeed increasing to 60 kias, altimeter and VSI showing climb; check need for carb heat
  • During crosswind takeoffs, maintain ground track (slip) below 50 ΄ AGL; above 50 ΄, apply cyclic into the wind and trim aircraft

Common errors

  • Attitude control during transition from hover
    • Initial forward cyclic should be just enough to begin moving the aircraft forward; an excessive nose-down attitude will cause the aircraft to descend
    • Once ETL is attained, the nose tends to pitch up, causing the aircraft to decelerate unless additional forward cyclic is added
  • Heading control
    • Aggressive cyclic inputs will necessitate compensating collective and ATP inputs
    • As airspeed increases, the increasing effectiveness of the tail rotor and fuselage streamlining provide directional stability, reducing the need for left ATP
  • Directional control during departure
    • Provide student with a distant references to prevent drift (eg, into the departure path for parallel runways)
  • Altitude deviations
    • A descent during the initial acceleration may be caused by overly aggressive forward cyclic
    • A climb as the aircraft accelerates through ETL is caused by pitching up of the nose/insufficient forward cyclic

Completion standards

  • Climbout initiated at 45±10 kias
  • Avoids shaded areas of the H/V diagram

Teaching considerations

  • Use a bulleted list here to describe any tips that will help instructors teach the maneuver, help students who are having difficulty mastering the maneuver
  • Safety considerations can be highlighted in red text

Additional practice

  • Estimate the distance to attain ETL–this helps students when learning confined area operations

Additional resources

  • Use a bulleted list here to link out to additional resources (files, diagrams, other pages)

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