Grumman AA1B

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Zacc, May 20, 2020.

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  1. Zacc

    Zacc Filing Flight Plan

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    So I am currently looking in to purchasing my first plane and I’ve been looking in to the AA1B. My main question is, would this plane be good for solo travel?
     
  2. FormerHangie

    FormerHangie En-Route

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    Yes, it's a lot of fun to fly, but it doesn't carry much. I trained in these and still remember them fondly. It's a little faster than its 0-200 and O-235 powered competition, and the higher wing loading is more comfortable in bumpy air.
     
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  3. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man En-Route

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    I owned an original AA1 and own a C150 now. If I was going somewhere the AA1 would be my choice. More comfortable in room and turbulence. It’s about 10 knots faster than my c150. For the type of flying I do now the C150 is a better fit. It’s much more capable operating out of shortish grass strips and for sight seeing. The AA1 is much easier and cheaper to maintain. AA1 has more cargo room than my fastback 150 but less than the later omnivision C150’s. Given the ever rising price of 150’s, unless you plan to do a lot of <2000’ grass strips I’d lean towards the Grumman.
     
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  4. Zacc

    Zacc Filing Flight Plan

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    So would you say the AA1 is a good starter?
     
  5. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man En-Route

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    It’s what I learned to fly in. While not hard to fly at all, it’s not as easy as the 150. The only time it’s easier is when the wind picks up. It’s the cheapest way to get into flying short of an ultralight.
     
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  6. GrummanBear

    GrummanBear Ejection Handle Pulled

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    What @Grum.Man said. Love mine. Outstanding in crosswind, and very sporty handling. More challenging and more fun than the traumahawks and high wings. Grumman for pavement, high wing for off road.
     
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  7. FormerHangie

    FormerHangie En-Route

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    I learned in AA1Bs and AA1Cs as well. It's not difficult to fly, but it's not as forgiving as a Cherokee or a Cessna 150. If you let it get slow on final it will sink. The other notable difference is in the flaps, which are not very effective. I once took off with full flaps, neither I nor my instructor noticed until we got leveled off and wondered why were a little slow in cruise.
     
  8. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man En-Route

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    I took my Yankee to plenty of grass strips but I would think twice about anything under 2k in the summer unless it was clear on the ends. The climb rate is very similar to a 150 but you are crossing the ground 10-15 knots faster which makes things larger in the windows quicker.
     
  9. Zacc

    Zacc Filing Flight Plan

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    I’m not planning on doing much grass field takeoffs. My other concern is that I will be doing a lot of traveling back and forth from South Carolina and Texas and I just need something reliable that’s not too crazy expensive
     
  10. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man En-Route

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    They don’t have very long legs but nor do any of the other 2 seater short of something like a C150 with patrol tanks. If you can find one with the 150hp engine and extended range tanks you can pull the power back and get a little more distance.
     
  11. JoeSelch

    JoeSelch Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    Yep, as Grum.Man said, the little Grummans have short legs. For me, the frequent fuel stops and careful fuel planning when visiting more remote locations made it not so much fun for traveling.
    But, with an O-320, mine was a hoot to fly!
     
  12. GrummanBear

    GrummanBear Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Kinda done that trip. (WV to TX). Super fun weekend. This was over West Virginia. One of these days I’ll do the 150 hp STC and take her to the real mountains out west. That said, I’m in the baby steps of a 240hp Bearhawk build for serious mountain flying.

    6A5A440C-F5D3-4BA5-9782-7E0309A8D6F8.jpeg
     
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  13. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    For Texas when the temps start off the day in the 90's and go up from there, you'll quickly come to appreciate something with a 180 horse engine.
     
  14. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    They are fun little airplanes, Landings can be a little tricky until you get used to it.
     
  15. chemgeek

    chemgeek Pattern Altitude

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    I owned an AA-1A, and put about 400 hours on it. It will carry one plus luggage or two and a toothbrush with full fuel. 3 hour legs with minimal reserves. I blocked it at 108 kt which is not shabby for 6 gph. I flew mine all over the eastern US, from Washington to Maine. My current Traveler isn't much faster (115 kt typical cruise) but will carry two plus a ton of baggage and shopping with more endurance.. The A models on had stall strips which make them pussycats in slow flight compared to the original AA-1. Like most 2 seat trainers, climb is anemic fully loaded. For one it is a hoot.
     
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  16. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man En-Route

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    Before this rumor starts again let’s be perfectly clear, the AA1 has a very tame stall. While a 150 will not really stall without doing something to really upset it an AA1 does. The nose drops straight ahead and it starts flying again as soon as it reaches a level flight attitude.
     
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  17. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I have an AA1C with an O-320 and I love it. With the O-320, its an awesome airplane, and I regularly see 850fpm at 85 knots. In the 20-30K range, I would hold out for the higher useful load of the B and C models. You may be able to find an O-320 upgraded AA1 at the top of your budget. I saw a nice one for sale for $29K a couple weeks back (if I remember where I will message you).

    But more important than upgrades, get the best condition plane you can a afford. Even buying a nice example, I have had some small issues with mine. But paying for a plane you can't fly is rather demoralizing.
     
  18. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    It's a sharper stall than a C-150 or a Cherokee (which is more a mush than a stall), but definitely straightforward. I instructed primary students in early AA-1s, including s/n 7, the first Yankee on the West Coast. I preferred it to our Cherokees as a trainer, especially for students intending to move up to higher-performance airplanes.
     
  19. steingar

    steingar Taxi to Parking

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    If the OP wants something cheap and reliable to get him between SC and Tx he should get a Toyota. No airplane will do it, and the car is likely to be faster as well.
     
  20. k9medic

    k9medic Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Travel and AA1 do not belong in the same sentence.

    I ferried an AA1B from Florida to the NE one time years ago. Headwinds had me at highway speeds. Had to keep stopping for fuel.
     
  21. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Compared to a Mooney, Bo or Cirrus, you are correct. But compared to anything else you can buy for less than $35K, fly for less than $100/hour and insure for $1000/yr at 100hours, a Yankee is a strong cross country machine.

    From a travel perspective, the Yankee is out classed by faster LSAs, anything retractable, or high performance. But on a trainer budget, you are hard pressed to find a better XC machine.
     
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  22. Anthony

    Anthony Touchdown! Greaser!

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    It's a great choice for a first airplane.