Is there a "correct" call sign for the PA-28R?

Discussion in 'Change to my Frequency...' started by iamtheari, Nov 16, 2016.

  1. iamtheari

    iamtheari Line Up and Wait

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    I fly an Arrow. I usually call myself Arrow 58J. One time, a controller responded by calling me Cherokee 58J. (She didn't scold me or correct me. She just used that call sign when responding to me.) I have also seen and heard people use the call sign Piper. And of course I could just be November.

    "Say Again Please" (great book, by the way--if you are a student pilot you need to own it and read it often, and if you are a certificated pilot you should at least read it as you will likely find a tip or trick that you were forgetting all these years) refers to an appendix of JO 7110.65 that was later removed and replaced with a reference to another JO, which does not specify this information (it just has the ICAO airplane type codes, as in P28R).

    Controllers or bookworms: Is one of these call signs more correct than the others? Is there an official reference?
     
  2. Brad Z

    Brad Z En-Route

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    Keep doing what you're doing. Since "Cherokee" is the most common of the Piper 28 variants, it's not surprising that the controller used it.
     
  3. James331

    James331 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    My first job was in an arrow 4, always called it arrow.
     
  4. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Either example is fine. Controller's can use either the type, model or the manufacturer for ID.

    On the strip, Arrow just shows up as P28R. A lot of controllers just play it safe and respond with Cherokee. If you respond with Arrow, they really should use that for subsequent transmissions.

    Not all controllers have the types memorized either. Some might see C414 and just say "twin Cessna." Just depends on how much they get into the books. Usually it's the controllers who are experienced or pilots in their spare time that know most types.
     
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  5. luvflyin

    luvflyin En-Route PoA Supporter

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    2−4−20. AIRCRAFT IDENTIFICATION
    Use the full identification in reply to aircraft with
    similar sounding identifications. For other aircraft,
    the same identification may be used in reply that the
    pilot used in his/her initial callup except use the
    correct identification after communications have
    been established. Identify aircraft as follows:
    a. U.S. registry aircraft. State one of the following:
    1. Civil. State the prefix “November” when
    establishing initial communications with U.S.
    registered aircraft followed by the ICAO phonetic
    pronunciation of the numbers/letters of the aircraft
    registration. The controller may state the aircraft
    type, the model, the manufacturer’s name, followed
    by the ICAO phonetic pronunciation of the
    numbers/letters of the aircraft registration if used by
    the pilot on the initial or subsequent call.

    EXAMPLE−
    Air traffic controller’s initiated call:
    “November One Two Three Four Golf.”
    “November One Two Three Four.”
    Responding to pilot’s initial or subsequent call:
    “Jet Commander One Two Three Four Papa.”
    “Bonanza One Two Three Four Tango.”
    “Sikorsky Six Three Eight Mike Foxtrot.”
     
  6. Ryanb

    Ryanb En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Cherokee works for all models of PA-28.
     
  7. mscard88

    mscard88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    This. Most controllers are not pilots and really know very little about flying. I was a controller and pilot and I'd say the places I worked that was less than 1% of the roster. Velocity sums it up well.
     
  8. luvflyin

    luvflyin En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Thats the reference above. Like said above some controllers are more familiar with types and models than others. You can call yourself an Arrow and if it doesn't register with him he's likely to call you cherokee because PA28 and Cherokee do register. There's nothing more correct or less correct about it.
     
  9. eman1200

    eman1200 Final Approach

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    the reason I specify 'arrow' when I fly that as opposed to cherokee is just in case they know it's a retract and just a little faster than a 140. maybe they know, maybe they don't, maybe it doesn't mean a thing, maybe they're not required to know, but in my mind I'VE made the distinction. otherwise I'd feel like I held back information. I'm sure someone will blast that theory, but that's what I'm going with.
     
  10. neilw2

    neilw2 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Whether I flew an Arrow, a Warrior, or an Archer I was almost always called "Cherokee" by ATC.
     
  11. Pilawt

    Pilawt En-Route

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    And PA-32, for that matter, even though Piper dropped the "Cherokee" name for all models after the 1977 model year (except "Cherokee Six", which lasted through 1978). Even when flying a Saratoga, I often heard ATC (usually the ... um ... more "seasoned" controllers) come back with the "Cherokee" name.
     
  12. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 Pattern Altitude

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    Well, find some solace in the fact at least you're not the clownshoe RV driver trying to use a vanity call sign from their military days. :rolleyes: Right up there with parachuting cirri and "Mooney flight of X" in the flying cliché department. :D

    As to the distinction between my arrow and a 140, lol I don't kid myself, I'm still slow. I always call myself cherokee.
     
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  13. Pilawt

    Pilawt En-Route

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    Yes and no. "P28R" for a low-tail Arrow with a normally-aspirated engine; "P28S" for a low-tail Turbo Arrow; "P28T" for a normally-aspirated T-tail Arrow; and "P28U" for a T-tail Turbo Arrow. https://www.faa.gov/documentLibrary/media/Order/Order_7360.1_.pdf

    For the Lances and retractable Saratogas, it's not so complicated. "P32R" for all the low-tail versions regardless of engine; and P32T for the T-tail Lance II.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2016
  14. AWACSEng

    AWACSEng Line Up and Wait

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    This makes sense and is a great way to distinguish yourself also to other traffic in the area. It can be helpful to others on frequency to know what kind of airplane to be looking for, or to help plan spacing if ATC hasn't done so (i.e. "follow the Cessna on 3 mile final"). It's good to know if the Cessna is a 172 identified as "Skyhawk 1234" or a Citation identified as "Citation 1234" instead of just calling oneself Cessna 1234. On initial check in with ATC, I've always used Model and N-number as callsign. I don't ever recall being taught or using just the full N-Number, as in the reference posted above, though.
     
  15. bradg33

    bradg33 Line Up and Wait

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    I gave up a long time ago on arguing with ATC over my "type." So long as it's generally close, I just call it whatever ATC wants to call it that particular day. Arrow = Cherokee? Sure. Debonair = Bonanza? Sure.
     
  16. Ravioli

    Ravioli En-Route PoA Supporter

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    I say RV for the Vans and assume they are aware of the "experimental nature" of my plane. I say Cherokee for all PA28 variants AND the PA32s. I say Cesnna for all them 150, 152, 172, 177. That's fine for the bulk of the radio work.

    EXCEPT: When requesting the Flight Following and they ask for the plane type. Then they'll get "Cardinal 12345 is a C177RG/___"
     
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  17. eman1200

    eman1200 Final Approach

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    I would never 'argue', but on one trip I took in a piper lance they were trying to contact me as 'skyhawk 96C....' and I didn't respond. after a while they came back with the full tail # (still skyhawk) and 'how do u read' which at that point I put 2 and 2 together. I apologized, corrected the type and went on my merry way. but my ears perk up if I hear 'cherokee' while flying an arrow.
     
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  18. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Try flying something more exotic than a PA28. The Navion used to have an identifier of N145. Nobody knew what that was. Even now when the identifier is NAVI, I still get called "NAVY" from time to time and asked for a type.
     
  19. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Yes, there are many versions of PA28. I was replying to the OP's case (P28R). That listing shows "Cherokee Arrow." Some controllers will use Cherokee and some Arrow. Really, if they're unsure, they should stick with "November" until they hear the pilot's version of type aircraft (2-4-20).
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2016
  20. bradg33

    bradg33 Line Up and Wait

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    I use the term "argue" in the very broad sense. Of course, "Lance" and "Skyhawk" are drastically different and I don't think I'd have apologized in your situation, that's 100% on the controller.
     
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  21. iamtheari

    iamtheari Line Up and Wait

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    Especially since he was flying a kite shaped like an F-111 at the time.
     
  22. kgruber

    kgruber En-Route

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    It drove ATC crazy when I ID'd my Cessna 150 as "Commuter!"
     
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  23. Jay Honeck

    Jay Honeck Touchdown! Greaser!

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    During a tower tour 15 years ago, I asked the controller if my identifying myself as "Pathfinder 56993" helped, hurt, or didn't matter.

    The one guy we regularly spoke with answered that it was helpful when things were busy, because he knew we were a 140 knot plane, not a 105 knot Cherokee 140. This helped with his mental picture and spacing.

    He also said that when it wasn't busy, it didn't matter at all. Given how dead the GA airspace is nowadays, I'm guessing that "Cherokee" works just fine for ATC.
     
  24. Pilawt

    Pilawt En-Route

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    Back around 1979 Piper published a "Controller Information Guide". Note that the identifiers were different then; this was before FAA and ICAO got together to standardize the system. PCIG-01.jpg PCIG-02.jpg
     
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  25. Rykymus

    Rykymus Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I use "Archer", mostly because it's easier to say than Cherokee. I'd say that 30% of the time ATC calls me Cherokee. I don't really care, and just keep using "Archer". If I'm VFR, they got my full type with my request for FF. If I'm IFR, it was on the flight plan. I did my bit to properly inform them. If the strip doesn't have the required info, that's on the system. If they ask me to do something my plane cannot do, or that I'm not comfortable with, they get "unable to comply".

    I'm still thinking of ID'g my plane with something else. Just can't think of a good one.
     
  26. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    All looks the same from the air.
     
  27. iamtheari

    iamtheari Line Up and Wait

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    One pilot I know was flying on a slow night and asked ATC for a call sign change to something funny. Maybe that's the solution.

    Me: Center, Arrow 58J, request.
    Center: Cherokee 58J, say request.
    Me: Change call sign, Arrow 58J is now Bugsmasher 58J.
     
  28. bobmrg

    bobmrg Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    There is no "correct" phraseology for anything. There are several mandatory reports, but not a word as to how those reports are to be phrased. Controllers have a book of mandatory phraseology...nothing similar exists for pilots.

    And thanks for the kind words.

    Bob Gardner
     
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  29. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Personally, I only get offended when ATC calls me a Bonanza when I'm flying the Beech 18.
     
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  30. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Now that would be an egregious error. Not even close in comparison.
     
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  31. TheGolfPilot

    TheGolfPilot Line Up and Wait

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    In the 182RG I have been called a whole slew of things. I can recall: skyhawk, Cessna, skylane, skywagon, centurion.
    I always respond with Skylane and my callsign because that is what I am.

    It's the callsign that is really important. The first word just catches your attention. If they kept calling citation 61X or even piper 61X it would take a few tries before I figured out it was me
     
  32. ircphoenix

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    You're the dude with the true Beech 18, right?
     
  33. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    If by true, you mean tailwheel, radial engine powered Twin Beech, then yes.
     
  34. Pilawt

    Pilawt En-Route

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    Agreed. If the controller answers with the wrong type I usually, in the immortal words of Sam Goldwyn, let it roll off my back like a duck. I'll just enunciate better in my next transmission.

    But where it can make a difference is if the controller answers me as, for example, "Stationair 7YQ" (instead of Skyhawk), then proceeds to tell another nearby airplane that he has "traffic at three o'clock and two miles, a Stationair" ... That's when I'll jump in and correct him.

    On the other hand, you can't always assume that the controller is wrong. More than once I've heard my abbreviated callsign with a different type, and there really was another airplane on frequency with the same abbreviated callsign. If there's any doubt at all, I'll ask, "Was that for Skyhawk 7YQ?"
     
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  35. mscard88

    mscard88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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  36. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Cherokee is a generic term,I used Arrow when calling atc,gives them a better idea of the airplanes performance.
     
  37. ircphoenix

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    That is fantastic. I'd be annoyed too if anyone got that twisted.
     
  38. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    Is an Arrow really that much faster than a Cherokee?:D
     
  39. iamtheari

    iamtheari Line Up and Wait

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    Yes. Cherokee 180 I did half my training in was good for 105 KTAS. Arrow 180 I fly now does 130 KTAS. It's 25% faster which is significant. Not earth shattering, but in 2 minutes I'll gain a mile on a Cherokee 180 which is probably enough for ATC to care when sequencing us to land. Maybe I'm wrong but based on this thread I'll keep saying Arrow and listening for everything short of Executive One.
     
  40. Aaronk25

    Aaronk25 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Just call it a Cherokee. If ya wanna sound cool just replace the word Cherokee with MOONEY. :)


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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