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Robin 2160 Alpha Sport

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Robin 2160 Alpha Sport

Old 23rd Apr 2021, 13:00
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: England
Posts: 4
Question Robin 2160 Alpha Sport


I'm about to start flying a Robin 2160 alpha sport and was wondering what speeds and power settings pilots of the R2160 tend to use ?

I know these vary depending on weight, weather, aircraft etc., but approximately what do you aim for during the following:

1) Rotation on take off
2) Climb out
3) Descent
4) Cruise
5) Glide
6) Approach - with flaps up & with flaps down
8) Slow flight

Any advice on the above much appreciated!

Red123 is offline  
Old 23rd Apr 2021, 13:23
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Quick read of this might help?

ETOPS is offline  
Old 23rd Apr 2021, 17:33
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Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Augusta, Georgia, USA (back from Germany again)
Posts: 194
I don't want to sound snarky, because I really like flying that airplane - but I would expect your instructor to give you a good overview on that. Also, those numbers should be easy to find in the airplane's handbook. (I'd share the one I have, but it's in German!)

It's a lovely airplane to fly. Not a great useful load and not super fast. I enjoyed aerobatics in it. Dive to accelerate and add full power. Over the top of the loop bring the power back to avoid over speeding the engine.

I found it very twitchy on the ground. Nice handling in the air. I know someone "who might sell his if I'm patient." There are only a couple here in the US.

Enjoy flying it!
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Old 24th Apr 2021, 03:41
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I'd share the one I have, but it's in German!
ETOPS has kindly provided a flight manual in his link with all the op's questions answered, all in 23 minutes, PPRuNe at its best.
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Old 24th Apr 2021, 08:26
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Join Date: Oct 2017
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Posts: 426
You will note that the manual warns that during spins in excess of three revolutions the engine may stall. Robin et al have no concerns with this as the engine will spontaneously restart following recovery. The UK CAA inspector of such things at the time deemed this unacceptable and the aeroplane was thus limited to a maximum of two revolutions in the UK and placarded with the limitation. Having spun the 2160 in excess of three revolutions for many years I only experienced the engine stalling once and it recovered spontaneously in accordance with the manual.

An interesting thing to note with regard to spin recovery. For a display sequence it was effective, after just two revolutions, to simply shove forward on the stick to recover onto a given heading with accuracy. However be warned that after five revolutions and the spin fully developed things are not the same in the 2160. I did this once by way of an experiment: the stick became as if set in concrete and impossible to move forward (obviously over stressing was of concern). Having recovered my wits and after applying the standard recovery technique using maximum opposite rudder the recovery was then achieved normally.

Last edited by Fl1ingfrog; 24th Apr 2021 at 08:54.
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Old 24th Apr 2021, 10:45
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Join Date: Nov 2019
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Very easy to scrape the tail skid on the ground. That being said, it doesn’t seem to be a significant problem. The skid on the one I flew was well worn down.
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Old 24th Apr 2021, 12:00
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Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Bressuire
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The tail skid is there to protect the Ventral fin. A well worn skid is obviously doing what it should.
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Old 24th Apr 2021, 12:15
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Join Date: Feb 2007
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Originally Posted by Red123 View Post
1) Rotation on take off
2) Climb out
When I'm on an aerobatics sortie, rotate is about 10 knots above the bottom of the green arc. I then level off some 5 meters above the runway, bring up the flaps, let the aircraft accelerate to redline speed (2700 RPM, ~115 knots) and yank it (4G) in a 45 degree upline. If I need to make a turn on climbout I might add 30 degrees bank as well. This zooms the aircraft to about 500 feet, where it nears its stall speed. So I carefully lower the nose (1/2G so the engine doesn't stall), let the aircraft accelerate a bit for a climbout speed of about 80-90 knots. That climbout is not so much a set speed, but more keeping the engine at ~2500 RPM.

But if you're just starting out on the 2160 and don't have any aerobatics experience/rating yet, this might not be the best technique to start out with.

Originally Posted by Red123 View Post
3) Descent
5) Glide
6) Approach - with flaps up & with flaps down
Depending on how I feel, I might use a spin to descend (a one turn spin ending in a vertical downline is 1000 feet, give or take), or I just keep the trim/speed but reduce engine power by about 500 RPM and let the aircraft find its own way down. Normal approach (full flaps) is about 70 reducing to 65 or so over the numbers, flapless maybe 75. Note that on a flapless landing it is very easy to scrape the tail.

Originally Posted by Red123 View Post
8) Slow flight
If you do it right you can perform a slow flight with full power and the stall warner blaring. Haven't checked but that's maybe 50 knots or so. But you need to work your feet to achieve that and not end up inverted. And don't keep at it too long as it could overheat the engine due to a lack of airflow.

Originally Posted by Red123 View Post
4) Cruise
I think officially 75% is 2450 RPM. This will give you about 105-110 knots.

If yours is any like the one I fly, it's an absolute bitch to lean the mixture. There's no instrumentation like an EGT and it's basically impossible to distinguish between "best power" and "best economy". I lean until the engine starts to run rough (which you feel and hear) and then enrich a tad. But that's probably less than a mm travel on the mixture knob. It is extremely sensitive.

Another thing. It is very tempting to grab the edge of the forward canopy (the part that slides forward) on entry and exit. But you should not do that - it's not well supported when it's open. There are grab handles moulded in the coaming, and you can use the edge of the rear canopy for support instead. And at our club it is common practice to lower the flaps when the aircraft is parked, to prevent people from inadvertently stepping on the flaps upon entry/exit. Unlike the PA28, the flaps are not strong enough for that.
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