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-   -   Airplane With The Nicest Handling (https://www.pprune.org/pacific-general-aviation-questions/642970-airplane-nicest-handling.html)

Old Akro 4th Oct 2021 03:05

I'm really surprised the Tiger Moth didn't feature more strongly. Its a delight that rewards gopod airmanship. It teaches rudder control. The J3 cub is best for the pure joy of messing around on a nice day. The Single seat Pitts is the only aeroplane that has ever really felt like an extension of my body. Think it and it does it. Wonderfully benign in the air. Fearful on the ground. The Stearman is great. But its like flying an armchair. Smaller and more responsive is better. The aitourer (150 / 160 Hp) is a greatly under-rated aeroplane. Its the most fun to land. Loved the time I've spent in a Maule on floats, but you need to be somewhere like Florida where you can lake hop.

Worst? I find it hard to find any redeeming qualities in the Auster.

4runner 4th Oct 2021 04:02

I’m surprised to see the 73 getting so much shade. I think the -500 and -700 are great. I much prefer those to the 76. I’m also the only one that feels this way. I second the king air. The -100 especially wirh geared garret power. I also throw some shade at barons and bonanzas. I think they’re overrated.

rjtjrt 4th Oct 2021 04:16


Originally Posted by Old Akro (Post 11120877)
I'm really surprised the Tiger Moth didn't feature more strongly. Its a delight that rewards gopod airmanship. It teaches rudder control. The J3 cub is best for the pure joy of messing around on a nice day. The Single seat Pitts is the only aeroplane that has ever really felt like an extension of my body. Think it and it does it. Wonderfully benign in the air. Fearful on the ground. The Stearman is great. But its like flying an armchair. Smaller and more responsive is better. The aitourer (150 / 160 Hp) is a greatly under-rated aeroplane. Its the most fun to land. Loved the time I've spent in a Maule on floats, but you need to be somewhere like Florida where you can lake hop.

Worst? I find it hard to find any redeeming qualities in the Auster.

I suggest you try a Stampe SV-4. I can't compare it to a Tiger, but it is nice to fly.

P51D 4th Oct 2021 04:33

Beech F33A Bonanza. A Bonzer unit with power and beautifully harmonized controls.

lucille 4th Oct 2021 05:53

Falcon 200. Dassault make nice handling jets. Not flown a 20 but hear they’re pretty good too.

NZFlyingKiwi 4th Oct 2021 06:17

I would add a vote for the Chipmunk - I've never had the good fortune to fly a Spitfire but if the Chipmunk is the 'poor man's Spitfire' then the Spit must be pretty special. ;) I'd also like to suggest the Slingsby T.67 - lacking in roll rate (and power in some versions) but that is another aeroplane that seems to respond almost telepathically. I would suggest the Extra 300 but unlike the aforementioned two that is significantly more likely to bite if you get something a bit wrong...

Eric Janson 4th Oct 2021 07:02


Originally Posted by georgetw (Post 11120446)
Nothing wrong with the DC3, best was the Ceres, then C Agwagan

Another vote for the DC-3 - there's still nothing to replace it.

Bergerie1 4th Oct 2021 07:46

By nicest handling I think we mean that the controls give the right response in roll, pitch and yaw for the deflection and stick forces involved, and to do so throughout the speed range, and with little or no friction in the control circuits. I am not a test pilot, but John Farley wrote, "The boffins used to say that a good starting point for harmonisation was aileron forces increasing with IAS, elevator forces with IAS squared and rudder with IAS cubed".

The Chipmunk may have lacked power but the control response was excellent and, despite what some have said, it was still good on instruments. I was lucky enough to get my PPL on a Tiger Moth, followed by about 150 hrs at Hamble on the Chipmunk. And even its spin characteristics were good, provided one stuck with the correct recovery procedure.

Lazyload 4th Oct 2021 07:55

There’s a few types missing. Does anyone have an opinion of the Rockwell 114? And in biplanes, what’s the Waco and the Stearman like to fly?

Des Dimona 4th Oct 2021 07:56

L1011 Tristar best large aircraft I have flown. Great to fly, and typical Lockheed, built like a tank.

Chipmunk is the standout light aircraft for me.

VORDME2 4th Oct 2021 08:34

767-300er the best handling followed very closely by the 777.
Then of course the 737-200 (not the 300 400 etc), and the DC10🥰.
i didn’t like to fly the 757,bae146

waldopepper42 4th Oct 2021 08:39

And another vote for the Chippie.

For the most fun - Extra 230. Fun aeroplane with no vices (that I could ever find)! In the early days, a mishandled spin recovery (forgot to take off the anti-spin rudder - DOH!) simply resulted in a power-off full rudder side slip with no inclination to flick out. I could almost hear her saying "Really? You'll have to work harder than that"!

stilton 4th Oct 2021 09:12

Best, B727 followed closely by the 767


Worst, MD80, sluggish in roll, way too sensitive in pitch and numerous design deficiencies


Most disappointing, the 757, lots of power and all works well but very sluggish in roll, a nasty dead spot in pitch when lowering the nose after landing that can bite and a terrible ride in turbulence

Fred Gassit 4th Oct 2021 09:35

Commander 114?
IMO: comfortable wide cabin, almost car like and nice trailing link main gear but nothing much to recall about the handling characteristics.
Just another light aircraft

clamchowder 4th Oct 2021 10:01


Originally Posted by stilton (Post 11120975)
Best, B727 followed closely by the 767


Worst, MD80, sluggish in roll, way too sensitive in pitch and numerous design deficiencies


Most disappointing, the 757, lots of power and all works well but very sluggish in roll, a nasty dead spot in pitch when lowering the nose after landing that can bite and a terrible ride in turbulence

Hadn't realised we were such a subjective bunch. I thought the 757-200 was nicer than the 767-300ER. More trim dependant but such a sweet jet. 76 felt a bit too twitchy in roll and pitch, but I am splitting hairs.

For me: 757,767,787,321,320

LOMCEVAK 4th Oct 2021 11:25


Originally Posted by PeterJG (Post 11120539)
The Buccaneer

At low level, 350-550 KIAS, I agree that it was very good. But in the landing pattern it had some of the worst flying qualities I have ever seen! The C2 Greyhound is the only other one that was as bad in the circuit. Also, the directional ‘notching’ above 550 KIAS and the lack of tailplane power at high Mach number left a lot to be desired. Definitely a ‘curate’s egg’.

RandomPerson8008 4th Oct 2021 12:24

American Champion Super Decathlon 8kcab followed by Beech Baron A55. 747/757/767 are wallowing pigs in handling, of course they will climb well though.

Chief Willy 4th Oct 2021 13:05

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.

nickp 4th Oct 2021 13:45

I'd vote for the Dak after the Chippy and I became quite fond of the Trident. Mind you, an hour in a Lightning was a revelation.
I'd sooner auto a Schweizer than an R22!

galaxy flyer 4th Oct 2021 14:07

North American F-100; no thrust, but wonderful handling.


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