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Bellanca Cruisair Split Flap Event

Bill Peppler

10,000 hour Canadian Commercial Pilot


Reprinted by permission for purposes of pilot education



Well, actually, an inadvertent  split flap condition may not be so bad after all.


When flying my 4-place low wing Bellanca 'Cruisair' many years ago, while on final approach and 'close in' to touch-down while maintaining normal approach speed (i.e. 80 mph), I had just selected full  flap (which on that model meant a 40+ degree of flap droop) [when] the spring-loaded flap on one side suddenly flipped up when the cable broke due to undetected  corrosion. But strange as it may seem, I was able to make a normal 3-point landing and keep the wings level in spite of the  flap of one wing being down and the other being in the full "up" position.


It would appear that at least on that particular model, aileron control was more than adequate to compensate for the rolling moment that just one flap being lowered would produce.