While chatting with other pilots at the Boundary Bay airshow, discussing my plane, the Expedition E350 by Found aviation, people were interested in the STOL, Short Take-Off and Landing abilities. I was giving them my stories of landings, but today I stumbled onto some photographs to illustrate it.
Two components of STOL, the short landing:
I often land in Squamish BC. Here’s a photo of the runway. It’s 2400 feet long, but it looks short from the air. Whenever I land there, I’m always comfortably using less than half of the runway, and I always make the turn onto the taxiway at the midpoint, toward the apron and fuel pumps. So my Expedition is comfortable on 1200 feet, probably less.
And if you really want to see a short landing, this video shows a landing on Hudson island, BC, scroll to the 1 minute point to see the landing. Hudson Island has about 1600 feet of usable grass runway, and I was stopped in under 900 feet. My speed was 60 Knots over the ocean, and then in the 50s until touchdown.
and the short take-off
The short take-off and being able to clear a 50 foot obstacle at 1500 feet, isn’t quite proved by these videos below, it’s illustrative, since this particular runway had an uphill part at the start, and was grass. I was probably 30 feet above ground at the 1500 foot spot, carrying nearly full fuel and 4 passengers. I wasn’t trying to show a rapid climb, just a smooth experience for my passengers.
I think I should get a video made at the Camrose asphalt runway, with a true 50′ marker placed at 1500 feet. I’d like to get my plane listed on Wikipedia on the list of STOL aircraft.
Take-off in Camrose – 1350 feet
August 12, 2015 update. A take-off today at Camrose CEQ3 airfield, in 1350 feet. 5pm, 0 wind, elevation 2420 feet ASL, temperature 25 degree C.
This distance measurement with Google Earth shows 1348.86 feet, at the moment when the airplane is over 50 feet above ground.
Here’s a longer view of the measurement on Google Earth.
Here’s an animated gif of the take-off. Better video is available here. I will explain the point-of-view (camera location) and the landmarks in the background.
The Photographer was standing at the purple dot.
No wind. The windsock is at yellow arrow.
Another view of Camrose CEQ3 airfield.
Here is climbing, airspeed 60 Knots, not at 50 feet yet, but perpendicular to camera.
And a few frames later in the video, am over 50 feet above ground. You will be noticing the landmarks in the background.
In the background on the Google Images screen-capture, Purple is the camera location, light red lampposts and light blue lampposts in the background.
Here’s the YouTube video of this take-off.
August 12, 2015 landing. Unfortunately, my first landing with a camera recording, was not ideal. I flared too late and had a big bounce, missing a lot of opportunity to apply brakes. I stopped and turned at a landing-light at 1700 feet. So that one is too long to qualify as short landing, but I’m sure I can do better. But anyway, it’s a nice video showing good landing gear handling a bounce.
On Wikipedia, with regard to STOL definitions, they aren’t saying the weight is heaviest at gross weight. My plane on this day had 2 passengers and 50% fuel. If I re-tried in the winter with no passengers and nearly empty gas tanks, performance would be better.