What Kind Of Plane You Fly?

I get asked this question quite often. Usually when I reply with “Cessna 172” most people know what I’m talking about. The next question usually is “how many people does it hold”, to which I reply “A pilot plus three”.

That answer is going to change after Friday. I’m getting checked out in a Piper Archer. The exact model is a PA28-181, which is a four seater like the 172. It has fixed gear and a fixed pitch prop, also like the 172.

The main difference between the 172 and the warrior is that it is a low wing aircraft, whereas the 172 is a high wing. It pretty much uses the same type of engine and horsepower (however the Archer has 20 more horse power than the Warrior).

My FI suggested that I get checked out in the Archer, because you are automatically allowed to fly the Warriors if you’re checked out on the Archer.

The reason why I’m moving from the 172 to the Warrior is because it’s almost impossible to get a 172 without booking almost a month in advance. Plus, most people I’ve talked to say the Pipers are nicer to fly.

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11 thoughts on “What Kind Of Plane You Fly?

  1. Nicer to fly, indeed. Unfortunately a side effect of low wing aircraft is that they destroy sightseeing when you carry pax that want to do that sort of thing.
    Not a big thing for you, but for the sort of flying I do (did?) a good view of the ground was a priority.
    My father owned a Mooney when I was a kid and I always remember looking out of the back window..and seeing such exciting things as the fuel caps. :-)
    You’ll enjoy the Archer though.

  2. I agree with Mark.
    Cherokees are much better planes for pilots, for a number of reasons — more stable in turbulence, not as bouncy on landing (gas struts), wing doesn’t drop and block your wing in a turn, crosswind landings are night-and-day easier (and you can land with a much bigger crosswind), no ladder required for fueling, and you can see whether ice is building up on the top of the wing or the fuel cap is leaking in flight — but they’re not so great for passengers because of the single door and the restricted view from the back seat (though the smoother turbulence handling is nice for them too).

  3. If by variable speed prop you mean a constant speed propellor I doubt your 172 has such a prop unless it is a 172 RG or has some conversion on it giving it a constant speed prop. A standard Archer also does not have a constant speed prop, both aircraft have what is referred to as a Fixed Pitch prop.

  4. Josh,
    I was waiting to see if someone noticed my mistake. Glad someone is paying attention.
    By variable speed prop, I mean, fixed pitch prop. Ie, the speed of the propeller changes with the speed of the engine. The opposite of a constant speed prop (variable pitch).
    Confusing yes. I will update my post to make it more clear.

  5. Hey Blake,
    I’m finding it very hard to book 172’s as well. Alot of people are training on them these days. I use to train at Toronto Airways then moved to Future Air because I was having problems booking planes and instructors. You can check out my blog at http://www.helpmefly.ca

  6. Matt, where is future air? I agree, I fly the 172 and it is a killer to book. Hopefully i’ll have my ppl within the next month and I’m looking for a ‘better’ place to rent a plane.

  7. Jonathan, Future air is located in Holland Landing, Barrie, and Collingwood. I’ve been so close to getting my ppl for over 2 months now but the weather is killing me.. By the looks of it someone needs to invest in some 172’s and rent them out.

  8. Have you considered using the 152’s for your solo flights?
    Yeah, if they’re anything like Oshawa’s they’re not showpieces of technology, but an hour is an hour is an hour when it comes to building time…and they’re signifigantly cheaper, too.
    Oshawa only has two 172’s and they were also hard to book. 152’s were much easier to come across.

  9. Do you know if TAL let any individual to rent his/her aiplane for training purposes. Please advise if you are aware of the TAL policy.

  10. You will have to contact Toronto Airways to answer that question.
    You can get their contact info on their site.

  11. @ Anonymous:

    A LONG time ago, TAL wouldn’t allow any external instruction on their AC – and revoked rental cards of those who were caught.

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