Small Aircraft Control Surfaces

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Anyone who has held their hand out of a car into the wind to play airplane already has a fundamental impression of control surfaces on the airplane.

When the heel of the palm went down, the airpressure under the hand pushed the hand up. That’s called lift. The airflow over/under the hand changes with the shape of the hand or airfoil. If you had little cut-outs near your wrist, there wouldn’t be as much lift.

The tail section contains control surfaces for keeping the plane stable and controllable.

1) Horizontal: The horizontal, non-moving part is called the stabilizer, and it prevents uncontrolled up-and-down motion of the nose. The small hinged sections on each side are called elevators, which work in unison. It is controlled by the cockpit control wheel/stick and increases or decreases lift. When forward pressure is applied on the wheel, the elevators move downward, which increases the length of the tail causing more lift, which forces the tail upward, causing the nose to drop. There is also a small hinged section in the elevator which is controlled by a small vertical wheel on the cockpit console which is used to finetune the elebator trim....

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