The most important thing when piloting a twin is to fly your airplane smoothly. Make your throttle adjustments gradually and never slam the controls or the throttle stick. As long as both engines are online, flying is no different than piloting a single engine aircraft. If one engine does go silent, throttle back just slightly and quickly figure out which engine is dead-stick. (This is where a good caller comes in handy.) Then make any required rudder trim adjustments to compensate for the offset engine thrust and the unwanted yaw conditions. Now would be a good time to land your plane. Don’t turn sharply into the dead engine. Concentrate on maintaining proper airspeed while setting up your approach and emergency landing. Most twins usually have higher wing loadings than similar size singles so never allow your plane to slow too much; it will stall and spiral in. Twin-tail airplanes such as B-25s, B-24s, P-38s etc., usually fly better than single-tail twin engine designs. This is because dual rudders located in the engine’s prop wash are more effective. If you want to fly a single-tail twin, pick one that has a large fin and rudder like a DC-3. Flying twins is always fun. Set up your engines properly and operate your twin smoothly while paying attention to throttle response and airspeed and you’ll successfully experience that multi-engine excitement. Regardless of their size, twins are very hard to beat!
Don’t miss the complete feature article, Flying Twins, in the April 2012 issue of Model Airplane News!