Ultralight Trike for experience pilot?

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Skywardbound172

New Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2013
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3
Location
Norfolk VA / Appleton WI
Hello all!!

I have been looking at Ultralight Trikes for a few weeks now and I have some general questions for anyone who has flown a Trike and also flow other aircraft.

Im an experienced pilot with over 4,000 hrs of flying a current airline pilot and experienced GA pilot. I have flown a quicksilver, variety of sport aircraft and every Cessna and Piper product imaginable, I have several hundred hours of tailwheel experience along with racing motorcycles and a background in welding and metal fabrication. Not trying to brag just give some history.

I have never flow a weight shift control aircraft or been hang gliding, and I know that an superior pilot uses his superior experience and superior judgement to never have to demonstrate his superior skills SOOOO is there anyone with trike experience that could shed some light on performance and or flight characteristics on an ultralight trike (single seat, beginner wing 35 HP engine).

Could anyone suggest good reading training materials for weight shift control?

Thanks for the consideration, looking forward to being part of the community!

CT
 

oriol

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Dec 31, 2009
Messages
773
Location
Barcelona, Spain.
One of my pendular instructors told me that he once offered a ride to a fighter pilot, the thing is that the military guy had no flying experience in other than his military jet or as a passenger in an airliner.

As from what my instructor said the guy went crazy laughing and gesticulating since they took off. The instructor improvised a landing on a track that crossed some orchards, to prove the stol capabilities of the trike, he then asked his passenger what was so funny?

The army guy told him that he was totally shocked by taking off without experiencing any big accelerations, it was unimaginable to him to fly that slow and simple (no closed cockpit): he was delighted.



I don´t think that with your experience you need to read books to learn about pendular flying procedures, it is the same approach than flying with light 3 axis airplanes but much more intuitive with less procedure: you don´t need to use an anemometer, turn and balance indicator or flaps.

It goes almost without saying that taking off and landing with a pendular aircraft is much less demanding (both mentally and physsically) than doing so with a hanglider.


In those days you sure can find modern pendulars with dual controls close to where you live, having some experience in them would be of great use to you prior to start flying solo on a trike or a minitrike.



Oriol
 

ARP

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Nov 24, 2009
Messages
317
Location
Darenth, Kent / England
CT, The control inputs for weight shift trikes are the reverse to the conventional controls you are so used to. Having converted a number of conventional pilots I found most had difficulty in adapting and there was an ever present danger that in a stress full situation they would revert to their original ingrained control input. The younger you are the better you will probably be at adapting. Some of the pilots were so ingrained they never went solo. When you can fly the trike without thinking what you are doing and your reactions become instinctive then the instructor will let you fly solo. The fact you have flown different types of aircraft shows you can adapt but they were controlled in the same way so it will not be a walk in the park. Do not attempt to go it alone even if your licence permits it. Have a check flight with an instructor and see how it feels and then take a good few lessons with an instructor in the back. Tony
 

ARP

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Nov 24, 2009
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317
Location
Darenth, Kent / England
No , but they will stall just like any other aircraft that flies too slow. The stall is benign and the aircraft will drop the nose and regain flying speed very quickly without pilot input. If a whip stall is conducted the resulting tail slide could cause the aircraft to tuck and tumble but that is taking the aircraft beyond it's designed flight envelope.Tony
 

Doggzilla

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Jun 2, 2013
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Everywhere USA
Doesn't trikes have a tendency to tumble over when flying too slow?
They are prone to wing gusts, I was nearly flipped on the ground and had to shift my whole body to keep it from flipping. Im 230lbs and 6'2", and I had some serious problems keeping it stable. I was concentrating on my own glider so much, I didnt realize that all the other gliders had been flipped, even though some of them had multiple people holding them and people strapped in, including experienced instructors. I got lucky because I was the largest person by about 20lbs.

I was using a 160, and it was just a bit too small for unassisted flight, but would probably have been great with any kind of motor. Just small enough for my size, and still big enough to support a motor. For most people, I think a 130 might be good, to get a little higher wing loading.
 
S

Skysurfer

1st - take lessons from a qualified instructor. ARP is right about 3 axis pilots "in a stress full situation they would revert to their original ingrained control input" - so, for example, coming in to land and you want to add a bit of speed and push forward - that will actually slow you up and maybe cause you to stall right where you don't want to.
 

ARP

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Nov 24, 2009
Messages
317
Location
Darenth, Kent / England
CT, Please do give it a try and let us know how you get on. The basic control can be learnt within a few minutes and I often have first timers able to take the controls and fly unaided as it is fairly intuitive. For experienced conventional pilots their ability can work against them. A simple test is to pat your head with one hand and rub your stomach with the other then reverse the action and see how you adapt. Modern trikes have good short field capability and will surprise GA pilots with their performance. Cruise speeds are typically 70-80mph with top speed around 100mph+ and stall at 38mph. Tony:- see video of youngsters that get to have a go for the first time and experience flight= http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6tlCmrXKac
 
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