Acroduster Crash

Discussion in 'Safety Forum' started by mikkee1, Aug 20, 2018.

Help Support Biplane Forum by donating using the link above.
  1. Aug 23, 2018 #41

    EAABipe40FF

    EAABipe40FF

    EAABipe40FF

    Registered Users Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2009
    Messages:
    5,034
    Likes Received:
    945
    Well I absolutely agree with Jim, a S2 Pitts checkout should do the job unless there is something really wrong with a airplane. At least the Pitts should humble a low time pilot if nothing else. If something really wrong with a certain individual aircraft it might bite even a more experienced person. This airplane seems to have been flown enough to be somewhat proven. If one has the basic ability to use their feet(like keep it straight) there are two basic things to keep you out of trouble. Keep the speed up in the pattern and be up high when you slow it down. My Acroduster 2 is Pitts like in emergency spin recovery, center the controls while pulling the power. But it most likely won't help much @ 500 &%^%$^ feet!

    It also seems we have people of a certain type usually involved in extreme sports who figure they can master anything they set their mind to. Witness the recent ball player with his seaplane too.

    Low time pilots simply don't know what they don't know. I wonder if anyone forcefully told them the dangers?

    The insurance angle still bothers me. The 2 hours "in type" is problematic and if it indeed means of "similar" type(like a Pitts), was that explained to them. And 2 hours in this case is almost criminal IMO. As others have said, for a new PP with fresh TW endorsement 10 hours including a "sign off" seems a min. Indeed I had a kid last fall who wanted to buy 1/2 of the AD2. New PP w/o tail wheel time. My insurance company wanted a TW endorsement plus a 10 hour min. S2 Pitts complete checkout.
    Another angle is did they seek full coverage w/hull or maybe just liability w/o passenger liability? That may be another reason my company only wanted me to get a 2 hours Pitts refresher. I only had liability as a single place and Not in motion hull?

    Jack
     
  2. Aug 23, 2018 #42

    Dave Baxter

    Dave Baxter

    Dave Baxter

    Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    Messages:
    1,636
    Likes Received:
    769
    I usually reserve my comments regarding these types of accidents until enough of the facts are in. As an old guy that has seen my share of accidents and lost more friends over the yrs than I care to admit it deeply saddens me when something so easily avoided could have had a much better ending. It is my goal as many of you know to help others enjoy their airplanes and not get hurt, and have flown with many of you. I am familiar with the airplane N787WM its builder and previous owner. However I would like to remind those interested in the Acroduster Too that it is a more demanding and less forgiving airplane compared to the Starduster Too. It also has a dismal accident record, not because it is a bad airplane, but because it is more demanding, add the differences between amateur built airplanes, fuel systems, weight and balance issues, engine an propeller combinations four cylinder or six cylinder and a new low time TW pilot, hot weather, two people on board minimum fuel I suspect, and aggressive steep turn in the pattern as well as from down wind to base? Hi speed stall? And you are on the 6:00 O: Clock news! Not saying that this is what happened, but everything about this screams accident just my take. Of the 80 or so Acroduster Toos built, well over a dozen have been involved in fatal accidents, and most of these were double fatal's. They, "The new owners" only took possession of the airplane Saturday, I am not sure he or she got much in the way of or any kind of dual or a meaningful check out in that airplane, and the accident occurred Monday morning! It is really sad, Kevin Kimball posted some information about them from face book which pretty much says it all, they were adrenalin junkies, and had a web site titled A Thousand Ways to Die! He the new owner said he wanted to race it at Reno, and she said that she planned to do unlimited airshow aerobatics with the airplane! This is the kind of thing that I am trying to keep from happening for new owners and builders, but some times you cant fix or stop what others might do, let alone the extremely poor judgment involved in this case?

    I have been asked this question on several occasions after things like this happen? Would you try to intervene and talk some sense into, if you thought the person had a high probability of killing himself? Or if he had a trusting non pilot passenger that might also be killed? Not an easy answer is it? Dave
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2018
  3. Aug 23, 2018 #43

    navybipe

    navybipe

    navybipe

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2013
    Messages:
    558
    Likes Received:
    174
    "Would you try to intervene and talk some sense....?" My experience has been that the first time you do it, it is difficult. After that it gets fairly easy. These types usually take an innocent with them. That is all the motivation I need to speak up.
     
    Knight Twister likes this.
  4. Aug 23, 2018 #44

    TexasTailwheel

    TexasTailwheel

    TexasTailwheel

    Member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    1
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    The big thing is to say just enough and not a ton more. Same types of folks often get either fairly defensive or blow you off. Sold a BC-12D Taylorcraft once and offered to basically give the guy a couple of flights of instruction in it - said he was an old timer and had lots of tailwheel time and didn't need it. I was skeptical... he took it into a fence within a month or so and that's not as hard to fly as a biplane by a lot.
     
  5. Aug 23, 2018 #45

    EAABipe40FF

    EAABipe40FF

    EAABipe40FF

    Registered Users Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2009
    Messages:
    5,034
    Likes Received:
    945
    Dave said,

    "...........but some times you cant fix.............."

    Yea!

    We might spin our wheels about it but that pretty much says it all.

    Oh well,

    Jack
     
  6. Aug 23, 2018 #46

    crankyklingon

    crankyklingon

    crankyklingon

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    Messages:
    1,683
    Likes Received:
    702
    Darwin always wins.
    Sad but true. So sorry.
     
    race38 likes this.
  7. Aug 23, 2018 #47

    GaryL

    GaryL

    GaryL

    Registered Users Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2017
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1
    Very sad that impatience and lack of experience probably led to this tragedy. Luckily nobody else on the ground was seriously hurt or killed.
    I work at Southwest Airlines as a ground equipment technician, but our safety and safety of others is always emphasized as our priority here.
    We are always told that there’s no such thing as an accident, but that they are all PREVENTABLE OCCURANCES.
     
  8. Aug 25, 2018 #48

    cactusav8r

    cactusav8r

    cactusav8r

    Cactusav8r Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2014
    Messages:
    853
    Likes Received:
    178
    http://www.kathrynsreport.com/2018/08/stolp-sa-750-acroduster-too-n787wm.html?m=1


    Here’s the Kathryn’s Report link, it may have some more links.


    What seems obvious sometimes isn’t.

    I do find it shocking that someone with such little experience would risk their lives this way...

    Even if it doesn’t end up being the actually cause. It certainly seems to be a weak link if not THE weak link.... Sad Day.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2018
  9. Aug 25, 2018 #49

    Lotahp1

    Lotahp1

    Lotahp1

    Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2012
    Messages:
    3,999
    Likes Received:
    782
    Hmmmm one “comment” mentions engine failure of some sort. Maybe just got it to slow with a engine out for some reason? Who knows at this point. Sad regardless...and another reminder to seek transition help when going from one plane to another...regardless of your Awesomeness.
     
  10. Aug 25, 2018 #50

    jrs14855

    jrs14855

    jrs14855

    Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2011
    Messages:
    1,663
    Likes Received:
    347
    Kathryns report also mentions a fuel spill, you can see some possible indication of that in the pictures. Also in the comments that the loss of control occurred in the base to final turn.
     
  11. Aug 25, 2018 #51

    Lotahp1

    Lotahp1

    Lotahp1

    Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2012
    Messages:
    3,999
    Likes Received:
    782
    I’m curious if they were flying on Center section fuel and exhausted it...causing the engine to stumble or die. From the dash video it looks like they got it slow and it stalled. Early to make assumptions, and guesses I know. Hope they can determine the exact cause.
     
  12. Aug 26, 2018 #52

    saber25

    saber25

    saber25

    Registered Users

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2013
    Messages:
    219
    Likes Received:
    92
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Colorado
    I have more empathy and concern for the sleepless nights the first responders must have after arriving at a scene like this. In the early 90's I had two friends die while in a flat spin in an over gross and way out of rear cg RV4. The front seater punched in at 245# and the rear seater at 230#. I had warned both against entertaining a flight under these conditions and even though the rear seater was an experienced CFI, some how they thought doing some rolls and other maneuvers could be easily and safely accomplished since this -4 was equipped with an 0-360. Again, the scene of the impact was horrific.

    Two years later another fellow in an RV4 were giving a joy ride to the rear seater who was in the final stages of completing his RV4. Neither had aerobatic experience and proceeded to do a high speed low level run on a private airstrip followed by a vertical pull up. The carburetor on the RV4 in a vertical climb runs out of fuel, the engine quits and not being familiar with a standard tail slide recovery the airplane finally nosed over to enter two spins to the left and one to the right before impact. They were too were blobs of protoplasm for the recovery crews.

    So while the victims of these occurrences don't live with their actions, the first responders most likely do for some time into the future. The pictures of what's left of the Starduster indicates a grim task ahead.
     
    marquartflyer and TexasTailwheel like this.
  13. Aug 26, 2018 #53

    EAABipe40FF

    EAABipe40FF

    EAABipe40FF

    Registered Users Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2009
    Messages:
    5,034
    Likes Received:
    945
    I'll quote myself from reply #15,

    "....As we so often have said, keep the speed up. Of coarse we don't know exactly what happened? An engine failure in the pattern will be a challenge for many experienced pilots including myself although with my personal experience I suspect I have learned and will fly it all the way to the crash......"

    It seems to me that others factors like an engine failure as bad as that might be are secondary. The fact is they spun in which is an almost sure way to die. And the last I heard fuel mismanagement is also considered pilot error....

    Anyone who thinks they should have been in that airplane should look in the mirror and ask hard questions about their own judgment.

    Jack (who often looks in the mirror)
     
    TexasTailwheel likes this.
  14. Aug 26, 2018 #54

    TexasTailwheel

    TexasTailwheel

    TexasTailwheel

    Member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    1
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    Yup. This.
    I still think with an Experimental that some one else built, no matter if you have time in a Pitts or whatever, you need to get REALLY familiar with the cockpit and make sure you've drilled everything and have as much information about what to do in an emergency as possible.

    Literally the week I started flight training for my Private Cert. a 172 that my first instructor had flown a day or two before went down in front of me and my family - stall spin on takeoff from maybe 300 feet. It seemed like the right thing to do to run and see if we could help. There were three 17-year-olds on board and two were dead on impact - never to be forgotten. Thankfully the guy in the back seat survived, but I'll never forget his femur sticking out of his thigh, and that was a nice injury compared to the guys in the front. I think you are right.
     
  15. Aug 26, 2018 #55

    ioneater

    ioneater

    ioneater

    Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2017
    Messages:
    306
    Likes Received:
    158
    I get the intent of what you're saying. However, at least in the greater metro areas, 1st responders are pretty desensitized to the gore.........unless it involves someone they know personally, children, leo or a mass casualty event. My crews are so used to dealing with horrific injuries, insane drug related stuff and random acts of stupidity that it really takes a lot to get to them. The kind of humor they use to blow off steam is very similar to daily life in an active combat zone. Disgusting and shocking to outsiders but totally normal within the community if that makes any sense.

    I hope we can all learn something useful from this accident when more information is available.
     
    bonanzadrv and Larry Lyons like this.
  16. Aug 27, 2018 #56

    Airplanebarn

    Airplanebarn

    Airplanebarn

    Slow building a Starduster Too . Love Tailwheel Fl

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2014
    Messages:
    109
    Likes Received:
    21
    Long Story , Short ...
    I was looking at a Starduster when I had NO Tailwheel time . Experienced Aviators warned me against it . I skipped the purchase . the later Buyer , low TW Time did EXACTLY what I was told Could happen . It's better to slow down and Listen when advice is given , and get More instruction / time in aircraft before venturing forth and harming yourself or others . Don't rush into an accident !
     
  17. Aug 28, 2018 #57

    pittss1flyer

    pittss1flyer

    pittss1flyer

    Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    26
    Aircraft engine sounds, to someone on the ground when the aircraft is in a spin, can sound very erratic. Will have to wait for the final analysis to know for sure, or maybe it will never be known for sure...
     

Share This Page