[Ref Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge, FAA-H-8083-25B Page 6-8]
What’s V-tail design?
two slanted tail surfaces (fixed surface) + ruddervators (movable surfaces)
V-tail design utilizes two slanted tail surfaces to perform the same functions as the surfaces of a conventional elevator and rudder configuration.
The fixed surfaces act as both horizontal and vertical stabilizers;
The movable surfaces, known as ruddervators, are connected through a special linkage to the control column.
The control wheel move both surfaces simultaneously;
The rudder pedals moves the surfaces differentially, thereby providing directional control.
When the pilot moves both controls – both control wheel (elevator control) and rudder pedals (rudder control), a mixing mechanism moves each surface at appropriate amount.
- control system for the V-tail is more complex than the control system for a conventional tail
- more susceptible to Dutch roll tendencies than a conventional tail
- total reduction in drag is minimal