Lazy 8's


Well-Known Member
Lazy 8\'s

Do any CFIs out there have any good tips on doing lazy 8's? Some days they are good and others make me want to pull my hair out.

Re: Lazy 8\'s

I know that having your entry speed, trim and power setting are all very important. The plane should be stabilized at it's target airspeed/altitude and power setting prior to beginning. If not it's almost impossible to complete the manuever at the same speed and altitude.

Sometimes it takes time to let everything stabilize but it's worth it.
Re: Lazy 8\'s

I think the best advice I can give you is to try to do the maneuver as slowly as possible. It's definately not an manuever that you can successfully rush through. Use a very gradual increase in pitch to slowly bleed off the airspeed and also bank as slowly as possible. If you try to do the lazy 8 to quickly it will never come out right.
Re: Lazy 8\'s

I also remember my instructor with a "mantra" during the manuever...Most people tend to bank too much too early so he'd say..."Pitch Pitch bank, Pitch Pitch Bank...."
Re: Lazy 8\'s

Mike's right on with the slow approach. Keep it slow and gradual. Another mistake a lot of people make is to bank too steep and practically make it into a wingover. Most examiners I've seen like a really smooth gradual lazy 8 better than one that's steep in bank.

Re: Lazy 8\'s

All the previous posts offer good advice. Most folks try to (incorrectly) rush the maneuver.

The other thing I typically see is that students think too much during the maneuver. This gets in the way of flying the airplane by feel and looking outside. Once you understand the 45, 90, 135 degree concepts, you need to forget about them and...

Cover up the flight instruments. This is a commercial maneuver. You should be looking outside. You can uncover the instruments later, but not right now.

Think about what a Lazy 8 is supposed to look like, and pick two outside reference points: one in front of you and one behind you. Then fly it smoothly with coordination (after clearing turns of course) and keep your attention outside. Don't worry about the 45, 90, 135 blah blah degree points. Those are just explained so you get the concepts, but must be discarded to do the maneuver correctly. Just go by your two reference points. Don't worry about altitude or airspeed. You're a commercial pilot, so you're not going to stall or overspeed the airplane if you're flying by feel. In short, become a bird and have fun.

After trying this 2-3 times, I think you'll be amazed at the results. Remember, this is a Laaaazy 8... not a wing-over. You're trying for smoothness and finesse. When I demonstrate them, I say laaaaazy 8 really slowly out loud and it slows the maneuver down to the right tempo.

You can uncover the flight instruments now, but after seeing the difference you may never look at them again
Re: Lazy 8\'s

What entry speed do you typically use on a 172RG? At the school I train out of they used to fly into it about 115-120 kias, but they changed it to 100-105 kias and have had better results... and it finishes up much faster.