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Lesson 2g - Visual Signals

Lesson Objective

The candidate must know all of the ground signals used by the line crew, for different circumstances, such as take up slack, open and close the tow hook, hold, begin takeoff, stop, release towline, and emergency stop.

The candidate must also know all of the SSA standard signals used between the glider and towplane.

Regulatory Requirement

Student Pilot: 14 CFR §61.87(i)(11)
Private Pilot Test Candidate: PTS Area of Operation IIE


The student/candidate will know: The following hand signals:

  • Check controls (although not used in our club)
  • Open Towhook
  • Close Towhook
  • Raise Wingtip
  • Take up Slack
  • Hold
  • Begin Takeoff
  • Stop Operation Immediately!
  • Stop
  • Release Towrope
  • Stop Engine Now

The following in-flight visual signals:

  • Towplane to glider:
    • Towplane is ready for takeoff
    • Something wrong with glider (Close Airbrakes!)
    • Release immediately!
    • The towplane can not release!
  • Glider to towplane:
    • please turn left
    • please turn right
    • increase tow airspeed
    • decrease tow airspeed
    • the glider can not release!

Completion Standards

When complete, the student will know and be able to demonstrate all of the signals listed above.

Prerequisite Study

Additional Study


Next Lesson: 2h -- Normal Takeoff
Previous Lesson: 2f -- Aerotow Release
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