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Piper Cub L4H

Old 7th Jan 2015, 23:29
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Piper Cub L4H

Possibly interested in one, anyone any advice or sagely words of advice or wisdom please? Initial thoughts are great fun, slow, short range, low cockpit weight and hand swung prop. Anything else?

Thanks.
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Old 8th Jan 2015, 05:44
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Great fun.....all you said mske it great.
Dm sent

Last edited by Tupperware Pilot; 8th Jan 2015 at 06:20.
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Old 8th Jan 2015, 07:46
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You've summed them up pretty well but more emphasis needs to be placed on the FUN bit
They slip beautifully and though short ranged can drop into just about any strip or field available so there are always plenty of places to visit. Fun, fun, fun!!!

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Old 8th Jan 2015, 08:03
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FA - You might have to slim down a tad!
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Old 8th Jan 2015, 08:41
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I fitted an 8 gallon wing tank to my L4H and that gave me a bladder bursting 5 hour endurance which gave me a 350 mile range in still air!

The Cub is a lovely aeroplane but with hindsight I would have gone for a Champ which addressed all of the J3 / L4's faults: 10 mph faster on same hp, flown from the front seat, decent undercarriage, easier access. All with the added bonus of being the same cost to run and cheaper to buy!

There are a few Austers and their Taylorcraft cousins out there that significantly out perform the Cub and still retian the 1930's chic.
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Old 8th Jan 2015, 09:08
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For a non-aerobatic aeroplane they are fabulous fun - if you're not in a hurry. Not for strong wind days; you won't get anywhere! I wrote a piece in 'Pilot' a very long time ago that told all about them.
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Old 8th Jan 2015, 17:38
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Is flying from the back seat a downside? I love it! The only downside to a L4/J3 is the cruise speed. Even my Slingsby T31m was faster!

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Old 8th Jan 2015, 19:32
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Flying from the back seat is one of the biggest pluses of the L4 / J3. One of the others is that the whole side of the cockpit can be opened up. the lower half folding down by the fuselage, the upper half latching under the wing. It's like being a bird!

From the back seat most of the aeroplane, and more importantly all of that fabulous view, is in front of you! With a slight xwind from the left, crabbing across the ground to the right, the world unreels before you like a giant IMAX movie, but more so!

No other aeroplane can do this (flexwings are compromised in that respect by having to wear a full face helmet).
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Old 8th Jan 2015, 19:36
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Hi, I do not hold a PPL, but I used regularly fly front seat (once a week, weather permitting) in a 65hp J3, I can confirm all of the above plus points, as for hand swinging, I was taught by a vexperienced taildrager driver and when done correctly and with respect is not a problem. Just remember the guy stood in front of the mincer is in charge, if the driver try's to rush the procedure then tell him to do it, trust me he will only do it to you once.

"Our" J3 did go as far afield as Belgium.

Good luck

PM
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Old 8th Jan 2015, 20:31
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I set out looking for a nice L4 but ended up with a lovely J3 which I cherished for 10 years.

Hand swinging was never a problem and I don't think I can remember a time when I longed for an electric starter.

Flying from the back seat was never an issue either, in fact it was the best seat in the house.

Only criticism I can think of is tank range with standard tank, which is a little limiting necessitating 120 mile still air legs.

The ability to set her down on a tanner and get out of the shortest, roughest of fields was one of her most endearing of attributes. Miss her and want her back.
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Old 8th Jan 2015, 22:14
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One of my best memories in the L4, was flying through the overhead at Edinburgh, the sides down, and getting caught in a large squall. Reckon the headwind was 30kts, and it seemed that I hovered over the airfield, Edinburgh International, lol. I got soaked as the rain poured in, when the drole tones of the controller asked could I expedite my transit. I am trying too came my weak and feeble reply. Eventually, I exited the o/h. Certain there was a round of applause from the tower.

As always, great fun, but learn to fly it well, preferably from an experienced guy. You will love it. Oh, and Flying Anorak, get a decent pre buy on anything you are looking at. Good luck on your search
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Old 9th Jan 2015, 18:49
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I bought a share in one a couple of months ago. I love it. As an ex glider pilot, I felt at home in it very quickly. Only a few instruments, maybe not even a radio. But you fly it by feel and it's very forgiving.

I'm 6'1" - flying from the back is no problem and with the skylight, you have good visibility. But in the front - cramped!. Hand starting is a bit of a knack but all part of the experience.

Getting the speed right on approach and landing is important - I'm over the hedge at 50Knt and rounding out at about 45 - stall speed is around 32Knt.

Easy to fly - but a long journey to learn to fly it like an ace. Plenty of youtube videos of people landing Cubs on moving trucks etc. You learn a lot about energy management.

I've only got a handful of hours in it - but enough to say the if you want to fly for the fun of it, then you won't go wrong with a well maintained bit of history i.e an L4 Cub
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Old 9th Jan 2015, 20:18
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vexperienced taildrager driver
I'll have to remember that term! It does seem to describe the aura of learning taildraggers!
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