Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Yep, that's the one

Flew a 1966 182 yesterday. Airframe was nearly as old as I am.  Owner was a friend of my latest CFII.

I LIKE it.

Pretty sure that's what I am gonna buy. Still looking, but.....

Decent load, decent fuel consumption, fast enough (who doesn't want a faster airplane?) but also pretty decently low approach speeds. Feel was not too heavy (Much lighter than the Arrow) and yet the heavier airframe made it feel smoother too.

Cruise was about 137 (at ~5000 ft), approach at final with 20 degrees of flaps was 70 knots. (And, I think, with practice and more flaps, that could could be a LOT lower). Feel at cruise was really smooth.

I flew it for a while, just getting the feel for it, then went an airport that has very little traffic...Normally. ...
5 planes in the pattern when we arrived!..... I entered at the end of the downwind after circling a bit to let one plane land and leave some space in the pattern for me, then followed the other four planes in and did a low pass just to get the feel of it at approach speeds. Back around the pattern and then I did a really nice landing (wind was variable at 4 so it was fairly easy) and then a taxi-back and takeoff.

Stayed in the pattern and did a second landing just like the first. Was gonna do a crosswind landing, but there wasn't enough wind to make it worthwhile, so we went back to the home airport, where the wind was 220 at 5 so I landed on 18, with another greaser (hard not to with that airplane in those wind conditions).
Put the plane away and the owner, who is 85, wouldn't let me pay for gas or anything....("do this for some other "kid" when you buy a plane") so I took him to lunch. He does want a towbar  and a bracket for it for his small tractor, so I might just weld one up for him....

All in all, I liked the 182. Decent speeds, decent approach, and (with trim) I did not find the nose to be too heavy on final or flare. Yes, you need more trim than a 172 or even an Arrow, but very, very doable. More flaps might have helped, but I was following the advice of the owner, who was sitting next to me.

And, guess what? My latest issue of Trad-A-Plane just arrived last night!