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View Diary: Aeronca L-16-A….or not, that is the question! (34 comments)

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  •  An acquaintance of mine bought a 65 hp Champ. (7+ / 0-)

    He brought it out to where we were flying gliders one afternoon.  He offered me a little stick time in it, so I climbed in.  It was not a particularly hot day, but the grass needed mowing and was six to eight inches high.  The gliders and tow plane, a Piper Pawnee, had no trouble with it.

    We ran that Champ all over the field, but the tallish grass was so draggy we could not get enough airspeed to get it off the ground.  Felt like we were trying to take off in mud. He was a rather smallish guy, but I am not.  The two of us put the plane right at gross.

    That little 65 hp Continental engine chugging for all it was worth, but not enough to get it out of the grass.  If he had the bigger 85 or 90 hp engine, I might have gotten a little Champ stick time that day.  

    The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

    by Otteray Scribe on Mon Feb 04, 2013 at 04:49:20 PM PST

    •  A great story... (7+ / 0-)

      ...in a way, I am GLAD you didn't 'aviate' as that little thing would have been tettering on the edge of a stall all the time!

      'Per Ardua Ad Astra'

      by shortfinals on Mon Feb 04, 2013 at 05:10:02 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Aeronca products (5+ / 0-)

        have some of the most unforgiving stall characteristics of any airplane ever built.  I would like to see the stats on how many spun in because of an uncoordinated turn from base to final.  

        The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

        by Otteray Scribe on Mon Feb 04, 2013 at 06:29:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Ouch! That sounds like a major aerodynamic fix... (5+ / 0-)

          ...which never got done!

          'Per Ardua Ad Astra'

          by shortfinals on Mon Feb 04, 2013 at 09:04:03 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Aeroncas like to spin. (4+ / 0-)

            Easiest airplane to spin I was ever in.  Spin entry was way faster than even a J-3 Cub.  Spin recovery is easy, but they spin with little warning.  

            The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

            by Otteray Scribe on Mon Feb 04, 2013 at 09:52:38 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  I think a lot of pilots are killed or injured (4+ / 0-)

            when they spin in on an approach to landing stall and spin.  As I said, the Champ is really bad about that if you are slow and uncoordinated when you turn from base to final.  Spin recovery is easy if you have enough altitude and spin training, but there is a natural instinct to try and pick up the dropping wing with the ailerons, which exacerbates the situation.

            I was approaching the airfield at Oxford, MS one day.  The runway is 9-27, due east and west.  The airport is on top of a low hill, and it is notorious for the wind blowing in all directions, sometimes all at the same time it seemed.  I was approaching runway 9 on a hot morning with some gusting wind.  I was in my Cessna 177B Cardinal, and had just leveled the wings and was slowing down on final approach.  I was probably going about 75 mph and level descending attitude.  Suddenly I caught about a 15 Knot wind shear gust from directly behind, giving me a relative wind well below stall speed.  The left wing and nose dropped at the same time. Thanks to spin training and a lot of glider experience flying on the ragged edge of a stall, instinct took over.  Instead of trying to pick up the left wing, I stomped the right rudder to the floorboard and pushed the yoke forward.  I regained flying speed and managed to level the thing out about two seconds before the wheels touched down on the numbers.  There are times when one needs an underwear dispenser in the airplane right along with the barf bags.  

            Without experience with spins and slow speed flight, I would have tried to roll the wings level and pull back on the yoke.  Had I done so, impact angle would have been about 85 degrees.  I think it borders on criminal that the FAA no longer requires spin training.  From talking with flight instructors, the FAA even seems to discourage it.  I learned to fly in a different era.

            The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

            by Otteray Scribe on Mon Feb 04, 2013 at 10:08:09 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Absolutely criminal NOT to learn to recover a spin (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Otteray Scribe, RiveroftheWest

              Other than a few 'spinless' aircraft - the Brunswick LF-1 Zaunkönig. for example - it would seem part of basic flight safety to learn WHAT to do, instinctively, when an aircraft 'bites'!

              'Per Ardua Ad Astra'

              by shortfinals on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:50:28 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

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