- Jul 30, 2008
Are there any advantages with the Y tail or is this completely cosmetic?
I think the basic fuselage is the same on both versions but retrofitting a Waiex tail on an already built Sonex would be a big project. It might be easier to take the whole fuselage tail cone off and build a new one.I was really asking if it was feasible to retrofit the Y-Tail...
I think your biggest challenge would be trying to get parts from Sonex....and buy the necessary piece parts from Sonex.
I don't know about the "B-Model conversion kit", but the rest of your idea (Sonex plans and Waiex tail parts) sounds like it would work fine. ...if you can get the parts from sonexJust wondering if someone could buy the Sonex plans and then buy the Waiex Y-Tail kit, B-Model conversion kit and end up with a hydrid of sorts with some kit parts and some scratch built.
I wouldn't hold my breath. The Sonex "model A" with conventional tail can still be scratch built from very detailed plans. Any other model is a kit that comes with "assembly" type instructions. From all I understand, if you want a Waiex you have to buy it as a kit and put it together. The original models are no longer available but AFAIK all the parts from the turtle deck rearward are the same in the earlier and later models.I would like to see if they would consider that option to give builders more choices and maybe have a "short-kit" version available.
I watched The Bonanza arrival several years ago at OSH and every V tail had difficulty with alignment in a moderate crosswind compared to the straight tail version, so personally, I prefer the straight tailI'm most likely a lone wolf here but I do not like the look of the "Y" tail (or "V" tail) on an airplane.
As far as the difference in handling I can't comment from experience as the four Sonex aircraft I have flown all have had the correct standard tail on them. There are Sonex owners that say there is no difference and other owners that are adamant that the "Y" tail does not have as much authority in crosswinds as the standard tail and some note that the "Y" tail tends to hunt a bit in cruise. Others say not. Don't know who to believe.
I do know that the only structural failure of a Sonex aircraft was the tail coming off of a "Y" tail Waiex. But know that the airplane was over stressed by the pilot, poorly built, and the tail was redesigned quickly after that accident. More information here:
As for the control of the "Y"tail ... here is a video that may help you understand the "mixer" set up in the tail:
What Barnie noted above was something I had on a biennial flight review. The Instructor said, "the stick is locked, land the airplane." Power, rudder, and trim works well. He did not make me actually set the airplane on the pavement but it was plain that I had the runway made. Fun!