Docile handling LSAs

Talk about airplanes! At last count, there are 39 (and growing) FAA certificated S-LSA (special light sport aircraft). These are factory-built ready to fly airplanes. If you can't afford a factory-built LSA, consider buying an E-LSA kit (experimental LSA - up to 99% complete).

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rezaf_2000
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Docile handling LSAs

Postby rezaf_2000 » Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:02 am

Which LSAs' handling is more docile? I was discussing LSAs to a pilot friend of mine who is used to Piper 28, and the discussion veered off to the handling question. The concern is that for pilots who are used to the docile handling of part-23 aircraft like the piper 28, transition into LSAs could be dangerous, as evidenced by a couple of NTSB accident reports.

I'm sure out of the 120+ LSA models available, there should be a few of them whose handling is close enough to a Piper 28? Of course, a 1320 lbs aircraft is a different animal compared to a 2440 lbs aircraft. Having said that, there ought to be LSAs that are more docile than others?

CT? Sportcruiser? Tecnam? Sportstar? Sting? Allegro?
60 hours of flight and counting

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MrMorden
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Re: Docile handling LSAs

Postby MrMorden » Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:29 am

rezaf_2000 wrote:Which LSAs' handling is more docile? I was discussing LSAs to a pilot friend of mine who is used to Piper 28, and the discussion veered off to the handling question. The concern is that for pilots who are used to the docile handling of part-23 aircraft like the piper 28, transition into LSAs could be dangerous, as evidenced by a couple of NTSB accident reports.

I'm sure out of the 120+ LSA models available, there should be a few of them whose handling is close enough to a Piper 28? Of course, a 1320 lbs aircraft is a different animal compared to a 2440 lbs aircraft. Having said that, there ought to be LSAs that are more docile than others?

CT? Sportcruiser? Tecnam? Sportstar? Sting? Allegro?


A Tecnam P-92 is the most honest and predictable airplane I have ever flown.
Andy Walker
Athens, GA
Sport Pilot ASEL, LSRI
2007 Flight Design CTSW E-LSA

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FastEddieB
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Re: Docile handling LSAs

Postby FastEddieB » Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:43 am

I realize the Sky Arrow was not on your short list, but...

I find its handling completely benign. I mean I have not found anything out of the ordinary or "squirrely" about it.

I think the nexus of many of the accidents is pilots not adequately allowing for the increased effect of wind at landing speeds.

A Cirrus or Bonanza pilot may look at a 12G20 crosswind and think "Meh. No problemo". And it probably isn't for a skilled pilot in a 3,000 lb. plane landing at 60-70k.

But that same wind in a 1,320 lb plane (max) landing at 40-50k is a whole 'nother animal.

Just my thoughts.
Fast Eddie B.
Sky Arrow 600 E-LSA • N467SA
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3Dreaming
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Re: Docile handling LSAs

Postby 3Dreaming » Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:46 am

When I first got involved with the Flight Design CT an experienced pilot friend did a test flight and likened it to a Piper Warrior. The CT is a docile airplane to fly, yet it is also more challenging to fly compared to the Warrior. In the Warrior everything happens slowly, and the controls are quite heavy. The CT has much lighter controls and is more responsive, and things seem to happen more quickly. In most respects the CT is a higher performance airplane than the Warrior. The big thing when transitioning to any new aircraft is find an instructor who knows the airplane for training.

3Dreaming
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Re: Docile handling LSAs

Postby 3Dreaming » Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:56 am

This is a pet peeve. People say part 23 aircraft, but many standard category aircraft were certified before part 23 standards were established. For example if you look at the TCDS for the Piper Warrior you will find the primary certification basis is CAR 3, with a touch of part 23 tossed in at a later date.

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drseti
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Re: Docile handling LSAs

Postby drseti » Sun Feb 08, 2015 11:03 am

I think what you're asking is: which is easier to fly, a plane that flies itself, or one that the pilot has to control? The answer is obvious.

A better question would be: which one makes you a better pilot?
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
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rgstubbsjr
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Re: Docile handling LSAs

Postby rgstubbsjr » Sun Feb 08, 2015 5:49 pm

MrMorden wrote:
rezaf_2000 wrote:Which LSAs' handling is more docile? I was discussing LSAs to a pilot friend of mine who is used to Piper 28, and the discussion veered off to the handling question. The concern is that for pilots who are used to the docile handling of part-23 aircraft like the piper 28, transition into LSAs could be dangerous, as evidenced by a couple of NTSB accident reports.

I'm sure out of the 120+ LSA models available, there should be a few of them whose handling is close enough to a Piper 28? Of course, a 1320 lbs aircraft is a different animal compared to a 2440 lbs aircraft. Having said that, there ought to be LSAs that are more docile than others?

CT? Sportcruiser? Tecnam? Sportstar? Sting? Allegro?


A Tecnam P-92 is the most honest and predictable airplane I have ever flown.


Yup. That's a fact. Jack.

Edgefly
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Re: Docile handling LSAs

Postby Edgefly » Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:13 pm

Although this is not a direct answer to your question, I would suggest that you consider this.
There are certainly differences between aircraft in terms of handling. The real answer though is as presented by Fast Eddie. Tell you friend to get instruction from a skilled CFI and not to be able to "just get it on the ground" but learn what conditions he can handle not only on landing but also minimally in unusual conditions/ profiles with whatever LSA he might choose. I know this sounds old hat and yeah I've heard that before. However, the time and money he spends doing this will pay him rewards for all of his flying career and confidence in his own ability to fly. If that day comes when he encounters winds 10 kts. Above what he finally establishes as his personal maximums, he'll also have the smarts to move to a different runway or even airport for that occasion and come back and confidently fly in conditions to his personal maximinia. The PA28 is a forgiving animal and 1320 #'s is a different problem but I doubt that any of the popular LSA aircraft are really squirrly, you just need to know the animals both plane & pilot.

Helen
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Re: Docile handling LSAs

Postby Helen » Thu Feb 12, 2015 8:53 pm

Tecnam P92 has been at the top of our list for some time. We just got an RV-12 though and that may knock it from the top. Time will tell.

Sky Arrow is super docile in the air but can be a handful to taxi in a stiff wind.
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drseti
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Re: Docile handling LSAs

Postby drseti » Thu Feb 12, 2015 9:49 pm

Helen wrote:Sky Arrow is super docile in the air but can be a handful to taxi in a stiff wind.


I found the finger-brakes a little odd, but I suppose I'd get used to them with practice. Kind of like the transition from heel to toe brakes.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof. H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D., CFII, LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC, iRMT
AvSport of Lock Haven
fly@AvSport.org
http://AvSport.org
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