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Old 05-18-2004, 03:29 PM   #1
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Join Date: May 2004
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A question for Pilots and Mechanics

I would describe my self a season business traveler and I've experienced my share of "oh crap" moments while flying (compressor failure, hit by lightening etc).

I was on a Northwest flight last night on an Airbus 319-200 and we experienced an inflight "problem" to which the pilot referred to as a "indicator showing overheat in the brake system". Now we were at cuisiing altitute and it required the pilot to lower the landing gear a few times (which makes a lot of noise and freaks people out obviously).

Does this mean basicaly a "fire" in the landing gears? Or is this standard practice? Of course we were met by DCA fire engines etc.

Any insights by the pilots and crew out there?

By the way, AirTran is one of my favorite airlines, clean quiet new planes, always on time from BWI to BOS and BWI to FortLauderadle.


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Old 05-18-2004, 04:12 PM   #2
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: ATL
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No this doesn't mean a fire. It means exactly what the capt told you. The 717 has a brake overheat detection system. All that happened was the plane probably had a brake that was dragging on takeoff roll. It will buildup alot of heat, as the gear was being raised the brakes are apllied again to stop the wheels from turning before the enter the wheel well, which applied more heat. The overheat warning is somewhere around 300 degrees Celsius very hot yes but fire no. He was raising and lowering the gear to get cool air flowing over the brakes. Since you were at cruise altitude it might have been a indication problem and lowered and raised the gear for precaution. He called for the trucks to be on the safe side in case the brakes heated up to much on landing.

Hope this helps

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Old 05-18-2004, 04:50 PM   #3
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very nicely stated b717mech......sure as you said chances are that the remp sensor on the brake was bad, but in the air there is no way to check, so the handbook requires the pilots to lower the gear (for cooling just as B717mech stated). If they noticed that the temp didnt change than it is obviously a sensor problem because that much air would in fact blow a fire out or cool the brakes. No reasons to be scared though there have been many flights flown with the landing gear down, the flight is usually a little longer and as samwc said "its pretty noisy in the cabin"
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Old 05-19-2004, 11:47 AM   #4
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Thanks for your reply!!! Makes me feel a lot bettert!!
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