How to Fly A Chandelle (Wing-Over)

Adrian Willis
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The Chandelle or Wing Over, is a glider aerobatic figure and often features in the BAeA Club Known sequence for Powered aircraft as well. Sometimes it appears in Sports unknown sequences and when it does, causes great problems as it is not easy. It is a non-Aresti figure and therefore is not in the CIVA Aresti catalog for powered aerobatics. It is essentially a 45° up line followed by a wing-over and a 45°down line. It is important to fly it properly if you are to do well in Club level competitions.

Judging Criteria

(from BAeA website)
This is not strictly an ‘Aresti’ figure, but demands skill and accurate in-balance flying.

Look for:

  1. A smooth pull to 45°.
  2. A straight wings-level line at 45° while the speed decays.
  3. A smoothly co-ordinated roll and pull to the left or the right so that as the aircraft reaches a horizontal flight path with the wings between vertical (90° and a 135° angle of bank – less or more than this is a downgrade at 1 point per 5°.
  4. The pull continues but with the roll direction reversed so that the aircraft reaches a 45° downwards line parallel to the entry line with the wings level, the second half of the pull/roll segment being a mirror of the first. A 45° down-line.
  5. A smooth pull to exit wings-level at an altitude that may be higher or lower than the entry line.

How to Fly a Chandelle or Wing-Over

In this example we will assume that the HASELL checks have been completed and height and speed is sufficient and it is trimmed to 1/2 a G.

    • Looking at the wing sight, pull to 45° up

    • At 70kts,  smoothly roll on 90° of bank
    • Reduce back pressure to ensure a high angle of attack but below critical angle of attack (don’t stall)
    • At 90 degrees of turn the nose should be cutting through the horizon.
    • At very low airspeed it is likely to feel as if you are pushing the stick forward slightly.
    • Continue the turn to complete the 180 degrees required.
    • Continue to lower the nose to 45° Nosedown. You won’t be able to see the wing sight until your wings are level so looking forward you have to judge the angle looking forward.
    • As soon as your wings are level, look at the wing sight and draw a precise 45° down line
    • Once a 45° down line has been drawn and your speed is sufficient for the next figure, pull to the horizontal

Common Mistakes

  • 45° lines being too shallow or too steep
  • Pulling too hard during the wing-over element and hitting the buffet
  • Under or over banking
  • Rolling out off axis
  • Forgetting to draw the 45° down line

Flying a good Chandelle to these judging criterea takes practice and certainly teaches you a lot about flying at high angles of attack at very low airspeed, learning the correct technique will save you hours of fruitless practice. Any questions, please ask below.

To book aerobatic training, contact Adrian at Adrian.Willis@BritishAerobaticAcademy.com or call or message him at 07712864413.

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