Good Landing Vertical Speed

I’m always wondering on IF when I rewatch my landings in the replay what would class as a bad landing, good landing, and buttering, in terms of vertical speed upon touchdown. I use Live Flight Connect to see the landing VS. Thanks.

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I class a good landing anything under -300 V/S, and anything under -100 V/S as butter, anything over -300 V/S is very hard. I personally aim for -100 - 200.

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Usually a good vertical landing speed is less then 300ft/min but the lowest it is the better the landing will be

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A good landing is one you can walk away from. A great landing is one where you can use the plane again

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Not necessarily though. A FPM of -100 is a good, greasy landing, but tooooo smooth is actually dangerous as you risk damaging the landing gear or overshooting the landing zone.

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How does it damage landing gear?

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Not sure you can walk away from anything in IF 🤣

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Wheel shimmy

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That means?

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Weaker initial contact between wheels and surface means the wheels take longer to spin up. The longer skidding abrades more rubber and on a wet runway the plane may start hydroplaning. So especially on contaminated (wet, icy or snowy) runways, too soft a landing must be avoided.

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Oh ok but in IF that doesn’t matter

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With that logic in IF you could slam down at -2000 and then bounce loads of times till stopping.

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Well, we don’t know if it also applies to IF. The physics in this simulator is amazing!

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Go on YouTube and have a look its hard to explain.

It’s slightly offtopic, but considering IF doesn’t have any rain models it definitely doesn’t have an effect on landing gear wear! Soft touchdowns generally prolong gear life - it’s true that a firm touchdown is generally recommended in contaminated runway conditions but more importantly in IF you want to stay well within the touchdown zone and not float. Also, wheel shimmy doesn’t really correlate to landing smoothness and is more of a problem in smaller aircraft anyway…

In real life, a good landing might not be a ‘smooth’ landing since it really depends on the situation. But in IF, it won’t hurt if you touchdown at 30fpm(0.5ft/sec), since you don’t have to worry about the weather, the tires’ friction with the ground, the compression of the main gear or the landing distance.

If you want to be more realistic, landing at 60-180fpm might be a good range for a firm landing. This is a range I’ve seen many time in several forums.

If you flare too much to ensure you land below 100fpm, you landing distance will increase and for short runways, you might overrun the runway after you have landed. Landing too smooth could also cause a long braking distance especially when you have a tailwind or when the runway is wet or icing, but you don’t really have to consider the weather since is not implemented in IF yet.

For spoilers to be auto-deployed, you’ll have to compress the main gear. If the landing is too smooth, the compression will be slower and the spoilers will take longer time to deploy, it’s not good for your deceleration and there is a chance that your aircraft will be lifted by a sudden increased headwind.

It’s a common view in many communities(not necessarily IFC but also other aviation communities, sim or real life) that a firm landing is better than a smooth landing.

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I normally pull up when GPWS calls 10 to -80 at speed of 140 in 777,787,330 throttle to 0 so keeps it descending, that’s what I do to make a buttered landing.

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Hey there @AdamTchaikovsky05,


Each aircraft uses different vertical landing speed and a lot of factors can affect the descent rate of an aircraft. But in my experience, I have figured out a sweet spot that is realistic and efficient. I recommend that you use -2500 V/S until you reach FL050 and then you can descend to FL030 using -800 V/S. Once you intercept the glideslope you can descend toward the runway accordingly.

Happy descending :)

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Solid post Henry-but in truth-on windy days, 60-100 isn’t quite enough. That 180-350 range is likely better for a windy approach. As you said in your post-you’ve gotta compress those wheels and get the reversers/spoilers unlocked. Some pilot friends of mine have always said that 100% of the time it depends on the conditions-wind down the runway at 3kt-then grease it on, wind across the runway at 15 gusting 25-plant it on there!

Remember too-in jets, it’s not about flaring into a stall-you want to fly the aircraft onto the runway

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I have a rule. On calm days I aim for -80 to -250. On windy days I aim for -150 to -350. Some times you must do a hard touchdown.

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