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Airplane With The Nicest Handling

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Airplane With The Nicest Handling

Old 5th Oct 2021, 11:22
  #141 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2021
Location: Southern Hemisphere
Posts: 20
Originally Posted by Chief Willy View Post
Best: 777-200. A delight in any weather. The -300 in turbulence spills too much tea for my liking.
Most fun: Extra 300
Worst: Empty A319 on a windy day. The whole A320 series sucks in handling. The A321 is woefully underpowered and under-winged.
I agree with the empty A319, but I have never enjoyed flying any machine very light. Be it a small helicopter or a A340-600
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 11:50
  #142 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Aus
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TK used to say that if you could fly a Seneca 1, you could fly anything!
Not sure about flying anything, but after a few circuits you would probably develop some nice arm toning and strength. I have a few Seneca hours, from the 1 through to the V, all of them except the 1 are not bad machines, the V being a bit of a spaceship compared the 1. The trick with all the Seneca and most Pipers is to place something heavy down the back if you have only one or two up front. The fact they have a main wheel for a nose wheel gives some suggestion Piper gave up on fixing it's issues.

There are/were a few Seneca 1s converted to spoilers for roll control. I heard this fixed a lot of the mush issues especially at low speed due to the 1 having trim tabs for ailerons. Never got to try one though.
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 12:05
  #143 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: UK
Posts: 1,751
Originally Posted by By George View Post
Interesting to see people nominate FBW aircraft in a handling discussion when so much feel is artificial and no trimming is required. I have recently trained a few ex Airbus pilots onto the 737 and it takes them a while to gain a feel for trim and pitch control..................... I am not an Airbus hater...........Sitting at the holding point over the years I have seen some very exciting crosswind landing attempts, especially on A320's..
Depends what the definition of handling is: not necessarily the most aerobatic, or the most feel etc. One might say a Rolls Royce or Bentley limousine handles very nicely - i.e. smooth and effortless - but you wouldn't take one rallying and expect it to be nimble on the Swedish forest tracks !

Re Airbus, no TRE I ever had could teach how to use the side-stick FBW combination, (I eventually taught myself). So I suspect that those A320s you have seen getting out of shape were flown by poorly-taught pilots. The FBW works just fine if one understands it.

Re trimming, I have always thought that having to manually trim and re-trim is crude and a pain, (for the record, I am type-rated on 6 manual trim types, including 737 Classic). If, owing to a quirk of physics, our cars veered to the right with increasing speed and the left with decreasing speed; we would all get used to compensating without thinking, but it is so much nicer that we don't have to !
Same with Airbus FBW, it is so much nicer and more refined to fly without having to trim all the time ! (and not having to pull back in turns as well ).
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 12:25
  #144 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Tring, UK
Posts: 1,607
Fascinating thread.

I’ve flown a lot of gliders, but the best handling for me was the untipped LS7, which was delicate, responsive and lived and died by AoA. As far as light aircraft, you can do worse than much of what came out of the Robin factory: proper stick, clever wing, feels like an aeroplane rather than a car with wings. RVs are in the same mould.

In terms of transport aircraft, I actually quite liked the “Scud” 737-200, as it had light, powerful controls and could be flown very accurately if you put the effort in. Considering the design constraints, my current steeds of 777-200/300 can be quite fun to fly and are excellent in adverse conditions, like strong crosswinds.
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 13:32
  #145 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2021
Location: UK
Posts: 21
For me, was the B727 100 and 200 series. Pre Valsan modification.
Looked nice, centre line thrust made it easy engine out, a great conventional instrument display and sufficient noise to make you look up and watch.
A proper aeroplane with a Flight Engineer to keep the crew in good order and to complete repairs after the room party got out of hand.
Happy days always.
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 13:56
  #146 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: East Sussex
Age: 83
Posts: 275
It's got to be horses for courses so:

1 Chipmunk (Canadian version)

2 Hunter 6

3 Valiant (before it broke up)
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 13:57
  #147 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: East Sussex
Age: 83
Posts: 275
It's got to be horses for courses so:

1 Chipmunk (Canadian version)

2 Hunter 6

3 Valiant (before it broke up)
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 15:08
  #148 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: BFE
Posts: 2,307
B737-200, very few bells and whistles plus the reverse buckets actually worked as advertised!
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 15:10
  #149 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: London UK
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Originally Posted by slast View Post
... the De Haviland 121 otherwise known as the Trident - also of course the “Ground-gripper”, but this thread IS about handling qualities not performance!

The contrast with its replacement B757 was remarkable ... But it did go up fast on a LHR-MAN shuttle on a cold day!
I rebut this "Gripper" comment about the Trident. On a T3 on the MAN-LHR Shuttle I had one of those rearward-facing seats, and directly across from me facing forward was my rather glum client. On rotation it went up like a rocket, and I really felt were it not for my seatbelt I would have been deposited in said glum client's lap.

No gripper !
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 18:43
  #150 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: UK
Posts: 743
There has been very little mention of WWII warbirds - yet! In that category, of the ones that I have flown definitely the Grumman F6F Hellcat. It is a fantastic flying machine.
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 21:43
  #151 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: not where I want to be
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Originally Posted by Grumpy retiree View Post
Yup. Same.

VH-MEP

What a dog.

Everything after that was easy.
Huh, I thought that registration was familiar.

It seems I first flew VH-MEP when it arrived in UnZud January 2009 - there's a comment in my log 'ailerons stiff'. There was another flight later that month, then it went to have the requisite work done in order to enter the NZ register as ZK-NFS.

I flew it again directly after that work had been done, and recall that flight well! It was early evening and after all the extra pre-checks I usually did following such extensive work we took off, only to find the trim control had not been properly (re)fitted and I had to push on the yoke very hard very quickly early in the sequence . Even with the trim fully aft it required considerable constant push on the controls to maintain level flight.

That was sorted a couple of days later and we used it for a few months as a multi trainer. As it's the only Seneca I I've flown I can't compare but it didn't seem too bad to me, albeit I went to considerable trouble to keep that nose wheel up. FWIW it also had a complete re-trim inside and was in very tidy condition. I believe it later languished in a hangar at AS for some years.

Oh dear, also recollect it had a door come open in flight. I suspect the (pilot) passenger hadn't properly closed/locked it, despite being specifically asked and checked on. Hardly the aircraft's fault though.

As to the nicest handling 'plane I've flown; compared to some I expect my experience is limited (to about 30 types), but for the most part I'd have to say Cub or C-47, with (oddly I know) an honourable mention to an AA5 I once flew. Perhaps it was just 'cos it was one of those balmy stress-free days we occasionally have, but it did seem to fly well, castoring nose wheel notwithstanding.

From what I read here it does seem regretable I've never flown a Chipmunk, and thus have missed out on the gold standard by which to judge everything else by...

FP.

Last edited by First_Principal; 5th Oct 2021 at 22:22. Reason: grammar/clarification
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 22:18
  #152 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Aus
Posts: 1,207
That was sorted a couple of days later and we used it for a few months as a multi trainer. As it's the only Seneca I I've flown I can't compare but it didn't seem too bad to me, albeit I went to considerable trouble to keep that nose wheel up. FWIW it also had a complete re-trim inside and was in very tidy condition. I believe it later languished in a hangar at AS for some years.
The Senecas really only problem is that horrible antics in the landing sequence. Once in flight they are generally a nice stable smooth ride, good for touring, training, whatever. Also much cheaper than most other light twins to operate. Just don't use the red lights on the 2-4 as maximum power lights, or you will be changing cylinders and turbochargers more regularly.

I did prefer the 2 blade installations to the 3 blade, gave them a few more knots in the cruise at the sacrifice of a little bit of field performance and noise, who's flying pistons without ANR these days anyway. You could easily get to non-turbo baron speeds even in the 2 if you climbed up and used those turbos at considerably less fuel burn and airframe cost.
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 23:51
  #153 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: terra firma
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Light single...the Tomahawk (PA-38)....sensitive and responsive, you just wore the aircraft. Good in aeros, although frowned upon.

Twin..the Seminole (PA-44)...straightforward and controllable unlike the awful Senecas 2 and 3. (PA-44)

Light jets..the Citation 2. So simple (and slow)

Bigger jets...the A330-300. Flew properly, nice in pitch and roll, landed nicely on one engine as well as two. Also slow.

Worst...the F-27 in a high crosswind, on the roll-out. Massive rudder and aileron inputs required. The older A321's were pretty shabby as well, poor in roll and yaw, and useless in decel after touchdown. The other 330 (Shed) was a wobbly thing too, in any sort of turbulence or crosswind.

But being paid to fly most of the above renders criticism/praise irrelevant.
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Old 5th Oct 2021, 23:59
  #154 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Aus
Posts: 1,207
Oh dear, also recollect it had a door come open in flight. I suspect the (pilot) passenger hadn't properly closed/locked it, despite being specifically asked and checked on. Hardly the aircraft's fault though.
I had this problem occur a few times on D95 Travelairs. Seems every time it was commencing descent from cruise and pitch forward slightly and the door would pop open with a bit of a loud sound scaring the passengers. This seemed to be a problem with both aircraft I flew, so I thought it might be a type thing. I wrote it up at least once in case it was a latching issue, engineers I assume looked at it and found no fault or fixed.

Bigger jets...the A330-300. Flew properly, nice in pitch and roll, landed nicely on one engine as well as two. Also slow.
I'd be very worried if an aircraft that was flown by the computer and you just pointed it where to go didn't fly right. I mean you are not really controlling these large beasts, the computers and hydraulics do that. The pilot is meant to feel like its easy as that's the whole intention, then they can put you in the seat for longer and pay less crew, the engineers build the feel into the machine feedback. In a non-power assisted controls the design really has to be right or you work hard. Doesn't mean that the big stuff ain't a dream to fly, but that's more the computer making it seem that way, I mean you wouldn't chose to fly in alternate law, or worse direct law, all day would you.
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Old 6th Oct 2021, 00:15
  #155 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 107
Fascinating that so many vote for the Chippy. I had the chance to fly one from the back seat about a year ago. It was a Canadian bubble canopy version. I had never met the owner before this flight. I just happened to be there watching with interest as he pre-flighted and he offered me a ride. He let me taxi and seemed surprised that I didn't find it difficult. I was a passenger for the takeoff and landing but had the chance to play with it in the air. Yes, it had a nice feel to the controls and it did what ever I suggested it should do, but it was a bit disconcerting that the owner had to keep correcting the power setting if I let it deviate by 10 rpm from the only rpm he thought it should operate at. (Is the Gipsy Major really that fussy?)

Sweetest handling aircraft I owned was an ASW-19B. Sweetest one I didn't own was the SHK. No powered aircraft came close but I am having a lot of fun in an FX-3 Carbon Cub. (Rudder feel too light to qualify for best handling award but it sure likes to kiss the ground goodbye.)
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Old 6th Oct 2021, 01:52
  #156 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: N/A
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Is the Gipsy Major really that fussy
No. Only trouble personally had was getting the thing to start on one memorable cold morning. Young teenager at the time hand swinging a Tiger Moth, thought the arm was going to drop off.
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Old 6th Oct 2021, 04:21
  #157 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 8
Dove

Originally Posted by Brookmans Park View Post
Singles the Chipmunk,multi the Dove
Totally agree on both , but Sea Devon, as we called it.
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Old 6th Oct 2021, 04:45
  #158 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: NSW
Posts: 99
Originally Posted by LOMCEVAK View Post
There has been very little mention of WWII warbirds - yet! In that category, of the ones that I have flown definitely the Grumman F6F Hellcat. It is a fantastic flying machine.

Me, I've flown the Sea Fury and the big Caddy, the B-25...both awesome [oh and my A-26]
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Old 6th Oct 2021, 05:54
  #159 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: by the seaside
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Have to agree on LS gliders

Not the 7 but the 6 followed by the 4. The fox and pilatus B4 AF were great aerobatic machines.
Condor followed by the Cub especially flying 100ft circuits. My chipmunk time was mired as my instructor was frightened of aerobatics. Tiger moth like flying a blancmange.
Beechcraft Baron..fabulous in spite of having one flick and ended up inverted.
DC9 34 ..the long range one best of the six versions and a great versatile aircraft.
Super VC10..Still dream about it.
Fokker 100 whilst it flew like a light aircraft was an embarrassment on the Airways and had the feeling of landing a wheel barrow with a dodgy wheel.
Dodged the classic after a simulator session as so easy it was boring.
Stretched DC 6..missed out by one place on the seniority list but the most difficult simulator I flew; the AirFrance 737 guy I was paired with crashed it.
Trident 2 would have been OK if we were allowed to fly it as designed.
DC10ER..boring.
Tugging at a mountain site in a Raylle was the most demanding..high speed descent in turbulence, drop cable below 50ft, climbing turn until slats opened (below 200ft) reverse turn lowering flaps, constant bank descending turn with full side slip, close throttle, ease off sideslip and heave; wind off trim to keep nose wheel off the runway as it shimmied partly due to landing downwind. (Was a pig in reality).
Carbon Nimbus 2 C (decent roll response) for mountain flying after LS6.
Phoebus C for long legs and a challange as so wrong but for staying up on a fart.
Some great model aircraft that flew like the real thing too.

Last edited by blind pew; 6th Oct 2021 at 06:12.
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Old 6th Oct 2021, 10:56
  #160 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: 04°11′30″N 073°31′45″E
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Beechcraft Baron 55
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