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N727LJ Learjet 25 strikes both wingtips on landing . . .

Must have been an exciting landing!!!

FlightAware Flight Tracker N727LJ

Regis#: 727LJ Make/Model: LJ25 Description: LEARJET 25
Date: 09/10/2008 Time: 1058

Event Type: Incident Highest Injury: None Mid Air: N Missing: N
Damage: Unknown

City: CHANTILLY State: VA Country: US


INJURY DATA Total Fatal: 0
# Crew: 2 Fat: 0 Ser: 0 Min: 0 Unk:
# Pass: 0 Fat: 0 Ser: 0 Min: 0 Unk:
# Grnd: Fat: 0 Ser: 0 Min: 0 Unk:


Activity: Unknown Phase: Landing Operation: OTHER

FAA FSDO: WASHINGTON IAD, DC (EA27) Entry date: 09/11/2008

It’s sitting behind a hangar at IAD with yellow HAZMAT cans under each wingtip collecting the leakage.

Yes, the gear was apparently down when the strikes occurred.

With fuel (lots of fuel) in the tip tanks Lear’s have been known to have tip tanks hit the runway. BUT a Lear 25 has such a high burn rate, that unless he was doing pattern work I doubt there was any fuel in the tips.

Alas, I’ll make no judgment calls. I do remember that you don’t pull power out or turn the yaw dampener off in a 25 till the very last second.

I landed a Lear 25 about 20kts UNDER ref one time and thought for sure that the tips would hit. They didn’t.

BTW don’t us the call “UN-REF” it sounded like “ON-REF”, a better call would be “REF minus 20.” We exchanged some post flight banter about that stupid phraseology.

First- coodos for still breathing after landing at 20kts under REF. I landed a 35 a few months ago 5kts under REF and it was ugly.

But also the original wing they put on the 25 was VERY unstable at slow speeds. It wasn’t till the advent of the Soft flight III and the other wing (can’t remember what they called it) that the Lear became much more forgiving at slow speeds.
BUT we all know that you shouldn’t land with more then 600lbs in the tips. Add a slow speed and BLAM you are having a very bad day, and have to explain to the FAA why you did what you did.
Also this airplane SUCKS in a crosswind. once you disengage the yaw damper (NOTICE Its called a yaw DAMPER not a yaw DAMPENER, sorry that drives me nuts) its a pig.
But regardless I never wish Ill for my fellow pilots, hope the crew is okay and doesn’t get their hands slapped too hard.


Are you thinking of the Longhorn?

About 15 years ago I saw one tip tank that had been removed, and scrapped, from a 35 in Basel. It was winter, the flight was fairly short. The weather was cloudy but not too bad, as they landed the crew reported they hit what they thought was a small gust of wind. It wasn’t until they taxied up to the hangar and saw the ground crew running around grabbing fire extinguishers they realized something was amiss. Turns out the gust they hit was the wing stalling while they were about a foot off the ground. They had picked up a small amount of ice in the decent but didn’t think much of it. The temperature was below freezing on the ground and they had not activated the anti-ice because they didn’t think it was that bad.

The Learjet maintenance manual requires a flight test by a factory flight test pilot if you remove more than one out of three screws in a row that hold the leading edge on. That is how touchy that wing is.


I think flyboy97222 is refering to the Softflight & Century III wings, they’re different. The Longhorn (28/29, 31, 55 & 60’s) is again different.

I fly the 36 with the Avcon extended tips & Delta fins. We don’t land with any fuel in the tips, even if that means dumping. We aren’t required to have yaw damps for flight, but it will still dutch roll with the fins and yaw damp off.

The dutch roll is so bad that both yaw damps must be working to takeoff in the 25. I doubt if a 25 had tip fuel at landing & if fuel was leaking I would bet the flappers between the tips & wing need replacing.

As Porterjet stated the wing is critical. The longhorn wing uses different screw head types to create the correct airflow at slow speeds & if the stall strips or sharks teeth have been over polished your wing will change stall characteristics. I’ve flown the full stall series in a 31 w/ a Lear Test pilot. EYE OPENER!! & I’m told the 31 is docile compared to the 25

A quick comment about the Lear wings- the Longhorn my look very different, but it is actually the same basic wing, with the up-swept tips as a replacement to tip tanks.