Airplanes With Same Body Style As The Lancair 360

Discussion in 'Home Builders and Sport Pilots' started by easik, Feb 5, 2018.

  1. easik

    easik Pre-Flight

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    I've always admired the looks of and finish of a Lancair 360. I would love to build or own an airplane one day in the future. As much as I desire the Lancair, I probably will not be buying one because of my skill level. Everyone I've talked to tells me how fast the airplane is and how economical it is. But they also tell me it's an airplane that will require some extra effort to fly.
    Anyway, all that said, are there other good experimentals in the market with similar body style that are easier to fly and slower (mainly stall speed)? I've looked at a Pulsar and JBM aircraft. JBM looked promising but the cost is a bit out there for me, and I recently contacted them about some of the spin recovery issues that's been well documented about the airplane. I didn't like the response I got so I had to scratch it off the list.

    Help me out please. What other viable options are out there? can be FG or RG.
     
  2. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Now offering reverse discounts.
    It can be a handful for a Pilot not properly trained to handle it.

    But why not mark ownership down as a goal and then train toward that goal?

    Find out what knowledge and skills you need to operate it safely and work to acquire them.
     
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  3. pilotrick

    pilotrick Filing Flight Plan

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    check out the RV9-A.
     
  4. Dav8or

    Dav8or En-Route

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    Do you mean JMB aircraft? If so, what spin recovery issues? I can't find anything about this issue that is supposedly well documented.

    The worst part of the Lancair 360 is what happens when the motor quits. Even if your flying skills are superb and you have the airplane well in hand, sometimes engines quit and when they do in the 360, your chances of survival narrow. If you can manage to make it to a hard runway (or something like a hard runway) and it's long enough and you don't screw up, you'll be fine. Proponents of the type will tell you how wonderful the glide ratio is, so you will be more likely to make the runway, but if you don't... it gets pretty ugly.

    The type lands very fast with tiny wheels, so gear up, or gear down makes little difference if the ground isn't well prepared. Then consider that fiberglass (layman's term for the "composite" it's made out of) fractures and breaks apart easily on high impact. It doesn't ball up and stay cohesive like metal does. This leaves you with little to no structure to protect you at 80-90 mph when you contact the dirt. You might be strapped in with a 5 point harness, but what is it really attached to?

    Then there is the tip up canopy. There is a very good chance the plane will flip when the nose digs in due to it being short and nose heavy. You'll find yourself upside down and trapped. Same goes for a water ditching. You better have thought of a way to get yourself out and that the gas in the likely broken wings isn't leaking.

    This is why you are much better off in the JMB VL3 than the original Lancair 360. The VL3 lands and much, much, much slower speeds, thus raising your probability of survival AND it has a aircraft parachute.

    There is a reason this type of airplane isn't super common and seen everywhere. I do agree though, it is amazingly beautiful and very efficient.
     
  5. FORANE

    FORANE Pattern Altitude

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    I own a lancair 235 / 320. they are efficient and look great but there is a reason that they require a type rating in some countries. I read the large tail version is more forgiving and came about secondary to the original tail version failing to get approval in Australia.

    on the lancair forum there is one guy building a 360 with fowler flaps. If he's successfull it would likely lower the stall speed.

    I have owned a rv -9a it is definitely easy to fly and has a low stall speed but fails to match your looks qualification.

    The lancair ES might work for you.

    The canard pushers have the composite look and the one I have flown was much easier than my lancair to land.

    For reference i transitioned into my lancair with only 100 hours all of which were in cessna 150, 152, 172, piper tomahawk aircraft. so it is possible with a properly qualified instructor but demands a pilot fly more often than just every couple months to maintain proficiency.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2018
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  6. easik

    easik Pre-Flight

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    Yea sorry I meant the JMB. Here are some accident reports https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/dblist.php?AcType=VL3 a good number of the incidents were the airplane going into a spin and could not recover. I was very excited about the airplane at first until I came across those reports. Generally as a low time pilot, I want an airplane that's more forgiving in the case of an emergency. One report I read on the accidents was a pilot and instructor were practicing power on stalls and the airplane went into a spin, sadly they couldn't recover. There are obviously other factors that could have contributed to a situation like that. Recovering from a spin will also require a good amount of altitude. Some of these reports didn't say precisely which altitude the airplane was flying when a spin occurred. Anyway, when I reached out to a JMB rep, this was the response I got back.
    "There are some inexperienced pilots that don't understand that planes are built differently. Typically school planes are safe to fly and very forgiving. The old VL3 did enter spin if you did a power on stall. The new has a stall strips and totally different behavior. But also here you have to know what you are doing. Many of the accidents in Europe has been due to stall training in low altitude, so when they enter a spin they don't have height enough to recover."
     
  7. easik

    easik Pre-Flight

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    Wow okay thanks. I have a little over 140 hours currently.
     
  8. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    The Lightning LS-1 looks similar. One of the few LSAs that I like. Never buy one though because you can fly a Glasair 1 for a fraction of the cost and go 50 kts faster.
     
  9. James331

    James331 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    [​IMG]

    Lots of the commie and socialist countries have a crap aviation scene and don't teach proper stick and rudder.


    But to the OP, find a glasair RG with the short wings and the largest engine you can shoehorn into it.

    If you you can find one, but legit I'm impressed when someone invokes the Lightning in conversation

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2018
  10. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    That’s a White Lightning. Different aircraft but they are hard to find. I’ve seen an average of 215 kts GS on only 210 hp in one.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2018
  11. Dav8or

    Dav8or En-Route

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    I would only consider the accidents of the JMB aircraft because the original Aveko VL3 they bought the rights to has been modified by them, I think to improve spin recovery. I remember their sales rep telling me they had redesigned the tail. How much and what exactly I really don't know. They also added a BRS system similar to Cirrus, but how well it works I don't know. I'm not even sure how much it's actually been tested.

    The one of two accidents you cited that actually occurred in the JMB version of the VL3 was described as an entry into a power on stall that developed into a spin at only 1700 feet. IMO, that is way too low to be practicing stalls. Just an FYI there are lots of certified airplanes that won't recover in that little altitude either. The Mooney I fly is one example. It needs at least 3000 feet to recover from a fully developed spin and even then you pretty much have to catch it fast and know exactly what you are doing to have a hope of recovery.
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2018
  12. Dav8or

    Dav8or En-Route

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    How would this help the OP who is worried about his piloting skills and perhaps buying a plane that is beyond his skill?? o_O
     
  13. FormerHangie

    FormerHangie Pattern Altitude

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    "A man's go to know his limitations" - Clint Eastwood as "Dirty" Harry Callhan

    Not everyone needs to fly the hot ship, some of us are busy and won't have time to maintain the level of proficiency needed for such an airplane. After reading @Dav8or 's description of the Lancair 360, it sounds like something no one should fly.

    In hang gliding, the higher performance gliders are harder to fly. They're harder to turn and require more precise glide path control on approach. We would occasionally see someone buy a glider that was a little out of their skill range, and quite often they'd wind up scaring themselves out of the sport. Me, I flew a Falcon, which is the 172 of hang gliders, easy to set up, easy to launch, fly and land. I never once felt uncomfortable flying my Falcon. Maybe the OP wants a similar experience with his airplane.
     
  14. UngaWunga

    UngaWunga Cleared for Takeoff

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    God hates a coward! Go for it. I'd love a 360, but my local runway is a little short. As are my skills, probably. :biggrin:
     
  15. James331

    James331 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Find a proper CFI
     
  16. ktup-flyer

    ktup-flyer Pattern Altitude

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    The Panthera when it comes out, I guess. It looks like a lancair ****ed a DA-40. Not sure when that will be though
     
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  17. easik

    easik Pre-Flight

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    Lovely airplane. Been following the Panthera for years. Disappointed that it never made the launch date of 2017. Delayed due to engine certification issues. It's likely gonna end up an experimental aircraft anyway the way things are going. Not sure why Pipistrel is taking long.
     
  18. ktup-flyer

    ktup-flyer Pattern Altitude

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    I would argue that that is a good thing
     
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  19. Gmonnig

    Gmonnig Pre-Flight

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    Give the Saberwing a look! Might be my "second" aircraft to go along with my Comanche 250. By time I wrap up other projects, I hope there will be a dozen or so flying
    [​IMG]
     
  20. easik

    easik Pre-Flight

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    Def been intrigued by the Saberwing but honestly it seems so tiny that I see it more like a toy than a cross country vehicle.
     
  21. FORANE

    FORANE Pattern Altitude

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    Not sure how the saberwing size compares to a lancair 235/320/360 but they look similar. While I am perfectly comfortable for hours in the reclined seat of the lancair, it is tight. Have you noticed me standing behind the cowling on my avitar?

    lancair.JPG
     
  22. Gmonnig

    Gmonnig Pre-Flight

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    It’s bigger than the Lancair 360. Just because the Saberwing sits close to the ground, doesn’t mean it’s cramped. It’s wider than the Lancair, RV 7, Cessna 182, and Bonanza. You can put adjustable peddles in and someone 6’7” can easily fit. I’m 6’2” (all torso) and do not fit in a Lancair 360:-(
     
  23. easik

    easik Pre-Flight

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    I might go check out the Saberwing in person. It's only a few hundred miles from me. I'll get some cool footage hopefully.