Teaching and Learning Flying - Commercial Pilot, Single-Engine Airplane



    A chandelle is a maximum-performance, climbing 180° turn, beginning from SLF at VA and ending in a wings-level nose-high attitude at MCA.


  • Lights on
  • CLEAR area with two 90° turns, left and right
  • Enter above 1,500 feet AGL
  • Entry airspeed at or below VA
  • Mixture rich, prop in high RPM


    Commercial Pilot PTS, VI, B
    • Explain performance factors
    • Altitude above 1,500 feet AGL
    • Entry not to exceed VA
    • Establishes approximately 30° bank
    • Power + pitch in smooth, coordinated climbing turn with constant bank to 90°
    • From 90° to 180°, constant rate of rollout with constant pitch and power
    • Rollout at 180° +/-10°, just above stall, maintain airspeed
    • Resume SLF with minimum loss of altitude


  • To develop the student's coordination, orientation, planning, and feel for maximum-performance flight
  • To develop the student's ability to use positive control techniques at varying airspeeds and attitudes


    • Discuss definition, safety factors, tolerances, and objectives of chandelles
    • Selection of a suitable entry altitude above 1,500 feet AGL
    • Entry airspeed and power setting
      • VA, (N6209T: 105 knots)
      • MP approximately 19"
      • If maximum climb power chandelle is planned, mixture rich and prop to high RPM prior to entry
    • Entry technique
      1. Lights on and CLEAR area with 90° turns, left and right
      2. SLF at VA
      3. Note heading and, especially, outside references
      4. Smooth coordinated 30° bank
      5. Then smoothly adjust pitch up to +15°
      6. If climb power desired, then, as pitch is adjusted, smoothly add climb power, MP 30"
      7. Maintain 30° bank during first 90° of turn
    • Division of attention and planning
    • Coordination of flight controls
        Plan moderate right rudder during right chandelle and during rollout of left chandelle
    • Pitch and bank attitudes at various points during the maneuver
      1. On entry, bank from level to 30°
      2. First 90° of turn: constant 30° bank while increasing pitch to 15°
      3. Last 90°: constant 15° pitch while decreasing bank to level
    • Proper correction for torque effect in right and left turns
      • Relative requirement for right rudder in both directions
      • Right chandelle: relatively firm right rudder during climbing turn; torque will aid rollout to left so little or no left rudder may be needed, then moderate right rudder again as nose-high level attitude attained
      • Left chandelle: torque aids climbing turn; rollout requires considerable right rudder (aileron drag and torque)
    • Achievement of maximum performance Amount of altitude gain is not a criterion of quality
    • Achieve good altitude gain for conditions flying a smooth, coordinated maneuver
  • Completion technique
    1. At the 180° point, maintain heading, coordination, and airspeed just above stall momentarily
    2. Then, hold altitude and gradually lower nose to SLF
  • Demonstrate chandelles
  • Coach student practice
    1. Start with 180° level turns with 30° of bank during the first 90° then smooth constant rate of rollout during the second 90°
    2. Then chandelles with constant power
    3. Then chandelles with climb power, 30"
    Critique student performance


  • Improper pitch, bank, and power coordination during entry or completion
    1. First bank
    2. Then pitch and power
  • Uncoordinated use of flight controls
  • Improper planning and timing of pitch and bank attitude
  • Factors related to failure in achieving maximum performance
      Poor planning, disorientation
  • A stall during the maneuver
  • Excessive deviation from desired heading during completion
      Tendency is for right chandelle to stop short of 180° and left chandelle to exceed 180° (torque)

Greg Gordon MD, CFII