B737-400 CHECK FLIGHT SEQUENCE
Last Updated: 6 April
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In late 2013 I was contracted
by an African Airline to test fly an African registered B737-400
following completion of the aircraft's 'C' check. The aircraft
me with a copy of a 'Check Flight Sequence' (i.e. test flight
procedure) produced by the United Kingdom (UK) CAA titled 'CFS 254
Careful reading of 'CFS 254 issue 1' revealed a number of anomalies
which are listed below. For my own safety and that of my crew I
elected to rewrite the document in order to clarify the anomalies I
believe exist within the document and reformat it to make it easier to
read whilst carrying out the Check Flight Sequence.
For understandable reasons associated with legal liability, the UK CAA
refused to engage in any correspondance regarding alleged mistakes
'CFS 254 issue 1', although I did speak by telephone with an officer
from the relevant section within the CAA who was polite but unable to
make any official comment pertaining to the same.
ANOMALIES AND SHORTCOMINGS ASSOCIATED WITH 'CFS 254 ISSUE 1'
- 'CFS 254 issue 1' contains no Index.
- Source of the information associated with 'CFS 254 issue 1' 'GA
Thrust Setting For Acceleration Check' graphs (Figures 1A and 1B) is
- Source of the information in Stall Speed table (Table 1) is not
listed and there is a discrepancy between the speeds listed in 'CFS 254
issue 1' and those obtained from Boeing 'B737-400 Airplane Flight
Manual Revision 10 to D6-8734.4362 dated 05-16-11. ' Thus for
- Speeds for Flap 5° are 6 knots lower than Boeing's AFM figures.
- Speeds for Flap 30° are 3 knots lower than Boeing's AFM figures.
- NOTE: Interestingly enough, 'CFS 254 issue 1' speeds seem to be more
accurate than Boeing figures as stall buffet and stick shaker occurred
exactly as per 'CFS 254 issue 1' speed schedule in the limited number
of approach to stalls carried out by the author.
- There are no instructions, nor provision, in 'CFS 254 issue 1' to record engine parameters during full power takeoff.
- There are no instructions in 'CFS 254 issue 1' to shutdown
engines in accordance with QRH 'Engine Shutdown Procedure'. Same
goes for 'Engine re-lights'.
- There are no instructions, nor reminder, in 'CFS 254 issue 1' to
carryout a 'Performance Climb' after each engine shutdown, even though
Performance Climb data is required to be recorded on the 'Test Flight
- With regard to 'Performance Climb' there are no references, nor information in 'CFS 254 issue 1' with regard to:
- 'Best Enroute Climb Speed',
- 'Scheduled Climb Gradient',
- 'Climb Gradient Converted to Rate of Climb (ROC) feet/minute'
- There is no specific reminder in 'CFS 254 issue 1' to re-check
the correct functioning of crew oxygen masks prior to exceeding 10,000'
cabin altitude during Pressurisation Check.
- There is an instruction in 'CFS 254 issue 1' to "record Cabin
Altitude when stabilised (7750 to 8250 feet)" whilst aircraft is below
FL200. This instruction is meaningless as normal cabin altitude
below FL200 is less than 1000 feet. This check needs to be
carried out at max flight altitude of FL370. (see point 10 below)
- High altitude checks in 'CFS 254 issue 1' are all performed at
FL350. Aircraft needs to be climbed to max altitude FL370 in
order to conduct the max cabin altitude check. (7750 to 8250 feet)
- 'CFS 254 issue 1' Flap 30° Stall Warning Check is conducted with
No. 1 Stall Warning CB tripped, but the check is not repeated with No.
2 Stall Warning CB tripped. It seems illogical that No. 2 Stall Warning
System is checked whereas No. 1 Stall Warning System is not
checked. Stall Warning System No. 1 is powered by the STBY
electrical power busses and is therefore the more important system to
CHECK FLIGHT SEQUENCE written by Alex Paterson
All the above anomalies have been addressed in the re-write of the document carried out by myself.
are reminded that the 'Check Flight Sequence' written by myself has not
been checked, nor approved, by any civil aviation regulatory authority
and therefore should only be used as an information resource in
conjunction with an official 'Check Flight Sequence' (CFS) document.
The author accepts no responsibility for any mistakes that may be contained within the document.
Readers are asked to advise Alex Paterson of any mistakes, or discrepancies within the document.
Link to B737-400 'Check Flight Sequence' by Alex Paterson as a PDF document (2.3mb)
Alex Paterson (2014)
Climb Gradient Table by Alex Paterson
Alex PATERSON is an Australian airline pilot. He writes articles and advises on
issues pertaining to aviation, politics, sociology, the environment,
sustainable farming, history, computers, natural health therapies and spirituality.
He can be contacted at:
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There is no copyright claimed by the author with regard to the document 'B737-400 Check Flight Sequence'
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Procedure, Test Flight Sequence, B737-400 Test Flight Procedure,
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