My take on the 2017 Mooney Ovation Ultra

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by FloridaPilot, Oct 29, 2017.

  1. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Final Approach

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    My initial training, and the lion’s share of instruction given, was in and around an Alert Area NW of Opa Locka, FL. As such, it seemed that when flying, good landing choices abound - and that is still no doubt true for large portions of the country.

    But here’s my view when headed north from my current base in Copperhill, TN:

    [​IMG]

    The arrow is where I’d head if the engine quit. With a 40kt stall speed, in my Sky Arrow I just might have the skill to be able to make it work and walk away uninjured. I breathe a lot easier in another few miles when the “plains” of Tellico Plains come within gliding distance.

    In a Mooney or Cirrus with an engine out where the photo was taken? It’s frankly hard for me to imagine having a chute in that instance and not using it. In that circumstance, data shows a success rate in the very high 90% range.

    The chute played no role in my choosing the Cirrus I flew for about 4 years. But now I really miss having that option.
     
  2. tspear

    tspear Cleared for Takeoff

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    Simple, to change the directions in the manual costs money. Cirrus would have to go through the full program, or at least a significant portion of it with the FAA.
    From multiple postings by people who were involved, Cirrus was going to have the chute. The FAA did not trust the chute and required extensive testing of it.
    Since Cirrus already had to go through the testing of the chute to meet the safety standards, the ELOS on spins was cheaper, easier, and faster to get through than actually adding to the test program to complete the spin testing. The full spin testing program involves a fair amount of engineering, not just spinning the plane around.
    EASA did not grant the full waiver, instead they required Cirrus to demonstrate the spin recover in a shortened program. The full spin program involves multiple stages to document the data that the spin recovery chute and structural reinforcement do not affect the spin recovery performance; then you have to install/test the spin recovery chute.... So beyond actually spinning the plane, there is a very long and detailed process which is required. EASA stated position was the existing chute could be utilized, and 99% of the spin test program could be eliminated and for Cirrus to actually just spin the plane and recover. Which Cirrus did.


    Tim
     
  3. steingar

    steingar Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I guess I'm rather fortunate, in that a disabling medical event is far less likely than a mechanical malfunction due to genetics and lifestyle choices. That said, I've always wanted Mrs. Steingar to take on a pinch hitter course, and figure out how to fly and land the airplane. I think she'd have to belly up the Mooney, since I doubt she could swing the gear. But that would be fine by me, were I incapacitated my main goal would be for her to survive the incident. I haven't yet been able to get her to do this, but there's always tomorrow.

    If I've given the impression that I'm some sort of ace on the stick I apologies profusely. I am probably the worst pilot I know. But I would still trust my own meager skills over a parachute. For better or worse I've little choice in the matter. The parachute I'd need would be golden to allow me that particular choice.
     
  4. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Final Approach

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    Yes, the hubris is strong with this one.
     
  5. steingar

    steingar Touchdown! Greaser!

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    No, I've an advanced degree in Biology and a pretty reasonable understanding of the risk factors. The things that are disabling instantaneously, like infarction and stroke, correlate with genetic, physiological, and lifestyle factors. You guys might make fun of my vegetarian mien, but I do it for a good reason. I miss riding my motorcycle all the time, but I walk to work every day for a reason.

    It is true that anyone can die at any time from just about anything. But the risk of dying from flaming space debris is pretty low, I don't spend a lot of time worrying about it. Similarly, my own infarction risk is not very high. The risk that my 55-year old airplane might break is considerably greater.

    And if that's hubris, well..., nobody's perfect.
     
  6. wayne

    wayne Line Up and Wait

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    Sorry Steingar, but the data doesn't support your position. I know, I know, "Lies, damn lies and statistics", but that data is not from people trying to sell the plane. The chute is helping to make the plane safer.

    In the beginning the SR22 was looking like the "V-tail Doctor killer" part two. People were flying a fast slick plane and getting into trouble. When they did they had the "I'm a real pilot, and real pilots fly the plane to the ground" perspective. And they died. Cirrus had a worse fatality rate than other certified planes. Cirrus got the message and changed the emphasis on the chute. Now Cirrus has a lower fatality rate than other certified planes. The chute is a big part of that.

    Why would one pull the chute from 10,000'? Other than incapacitated pilot or the wings broke off or fully iced up I don't know. If the engine totally failed I'd look first to see which airport I could land at. I always have the top 430 on Nearest when flying a SR22. The vast majority of my cruise time is within glide range of a public paved airport. So that's Plan A. In good weather Plan B is to look for a good turf runway, but I think the odds are low on that; between flying IFR, low visibility due to humidity in the southeast and difficulty in spotting many private runways it's a low probability. Ok, assuming A & B are out do I pull the chute at 10,000'? No. I glide to location over open space and get lower, then I pull the chute. That way I can help put it down in a safer place. Even on Plan A I continue to review my glide range to ensure I can still make it, or if I need to change to Plan C.

    My perspective when things go totally sideways is it's my job to make sure everyone on-board the insurance company's plane walks away unharmed. That's why gliding to a paved runway is Plan A. I know how to do that. Plan B is more of a hope. Plan C is perfectly a viable option to me. The heck with the plane. I'm far more concerned about the people in it.

    I'm flying a Baron now, and occasionally a SR22, but flew a SR22 for 4.5 years and am working on setting up a partnership to buy an older SR22. An older SR22 because I can't afford to buy even a share of a new SR22; ok I could buy a brand new SR22 if I cashed out all of our retirement savings, but I wouldn't live to fly it as my wife would shoot me. :eek: Is that because I need the chute? No. It is on the list of benefits, but certainly not the main driver. Two doors is higher than the chute, so are the side sticks (passengers really like not having the yoke in front of them). I recently looked at a partnership in a Mooney Rocket. Unfortunately it's low useful load and high fuel burn rate made the numbers just not work well for me. I really wanted it to work, as 200+ kts would be fun, and the ability to get up into the teens easily would be nice in the southeast. Oh well, back to working on the SR22 partnership.
     
  7. Piloto

    Piloto Line Up and Wait

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    I personally have not seen the corrosion issues on the Baron, Navajo and Mooney. And I don't flush with water after use. The stream coming out of the venturi is narrow and does not spray over the skin. Unlike chlorine urine is not that corrosive.
     
  8. kgruber

    kgruber En-Route

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    Let's just hope that the "new" Mooney engineers work on "control feel." They are the bottom of the list in that category.
     
  9. olasek

    olasek Pattern Altitude

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    Maybe, don’t know. But the point is it is difficult to get in a spin, I just started Cirrus training and is is a very stable platform, you practice stalls and airplane behaves in a very predictable manner, it isn’t Cessna where is is hard to keep wings level while practicing stalls. Is King Air difficult to recover from a spin - apparently very difficult but again you are never even close to a spin in those airplanes.




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  10. teejayevans

    teejayevans Pattern Altitude

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    There was Cirrus salesman who purposely spun a Cirrus to demonstrate it could get out of a spin...you guess it, the classic “watch this” and he couldn’t recover and had to pull the chute.
     
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  11. teejayevans

    teejayevans Pattern Altitude

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    That’s a byproduct of control rod versus lighter cable control...I like the stability especially in IFR...personally I like the heavier feel because most of the time you’re in stable flight anyway. They are at their best doing cross country trips, eating up miles using minimal fuel.
     
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  12. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Final Approach

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    True, up to a point. But right at the edges of the envelope there be dragons, so don't be complacent.

    I recently linked to this video on another forum and it should be required watching for all Cirrus pilots:

     
  13. tspear

    tspear Cleared for Takeoff

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    That does not make sense. The Aerostar has control rods not cables. And the feel was lighter than the Cirrus I flew, or any Bonanza, Mooney or Cessna. Now I admit, I am in the single digits for number of hours on the Bonanza, Mooney and Cessna.
    But there has to be a lot more to it.

    Tim
     
  14. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Final Approach

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    My Sky Arrow uses control rods for ailerons and elevator, yet the feel is very pleasantly light.
     
  15. tspear

    tspear Cleared for Takeoff

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    Why Cirrus pilots? Almost any plane you can do that too.

    Tim
     
  16. Bill Jennings

    Bill Jennings Final Approach

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    Anyone who has pre-flighted a Mooney knows about the STRONG centering springs on the elevator. These springs give a real heavy feel to pitch inputs.
     
  17. tspear

    tspear Cleared for Takeoff

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    Springs I can get. I do not recall that, but then again the preflights I have done on a Mooney were under the direction of the owner :D
    If TJ had attributed the feel to the springs, I would not have replied. He attributed the feel to the control rods, which does not make sense to me.

    Tim
     
  18. Bill Jennings

    Bill Jennings Final Approach

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    Agree, control rods should not add appreciable resistance unless the joints/bearings are bad or in need of lubrication.
     
  19. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Control failure. Some structural failures. Pilot incapacitation. Mid-air collision, the entire reason the chute is on the Cirrus to begin with! None of those are completely "of your own making" but they're all times where not pulling the chute would be foolish.

    And, it'd be useful in other situations too. Engine failure on a moonless night or low IMC, for example.

    And that lack of proficiency in spins that most pilots have nowadays since spin training isn't required any more is likely why Cirrus just has you pull the chute. Unfortunately, at the altitudes where most spins happen, you're gonna be dead anyway.

    Over hostile terrain of nearly any kind, where you can't glide to safety: Steer to the least hostile part (e.g., if you're in the mountains, steer toward a valley, where you're more likely to find water and people) and then pull the chute. Way better option than crashing into the trees with the increased kinetic energy of the forward airspeed necessary to keep the wing flying. If you try to take it into trees in a glide, you will be injured worse and you'll almost certainly be releasing the fuel from its tanks. Bad combo.

    Water: Glide it in and ditch it. No chute. The BRS/CAPS system is designed to absorb energy via the landing gear collapsing to protect you, and that doesn't happen on water. The guy who chuted into the Hudson broke his back.

    City: Point it to the largest open area within glide range, if capable, then pull chute. As others pointed out, the affected area is MUCH smaller coming down under a chute than it is in a glide.

    Probably - They have pretty tiny rudders.

    What do you base that on??? I love the feel of mine, as do most of the folks I let fly it. It's the most "like it's on rails" of any single I've flown.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2017
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  20. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I'd say Slovenia looks like a good candidate:

    [​IMG]

    http://www.panthera-aircraft.com
     
  21. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Final Approach

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  22. Tantalum

    Tantalum Pattern Altitude

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    Never spun it but in transition training we did a bunch of stalls and slow flight, etc. Seemed remarkably stable to me and uneventful to be honest. And I'd heard the rumors so I was ready for some almost-spin-horror-effort

    I still don't get why the hate for the chute. No one forces you to use it, you can still glide it down to a field if able.. but the chute is an awesome tool if you have no suitable place to land. Like over congested LA? I'm pulling
     
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  23. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I don't know about hate but the useful load on the SR-20 and SR-22 isn't so wunnerful. Deleting the chute would help that. The repack cost is also a penalty. The design of the chute installation has been improved in terms of repack but the cost is still high. An unbiased study of chute economics which included all factors might be more interesting than either side of the chute argument wants...
     
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  24. Tantalum

    Tantalum Pattern Altitude

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    RE: useful load

    The SR22 has the best when comparing TTX and Mooney Ovation.. at least based on some quick Googling. I'm sure they can be configured various ways but these planes are pretty even with useful load. To be honest most GA 4 seaters are realistically only 2 person planes...
     
  25. Tantalum

    Tantalum Pattern Altitude

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    Not a Cirrus fanboy, plenty of stuff I don't like about 'em. But given what's out there I do believe it gives the best overall compromise for speed, comfort, safety, etc. Horses for courses though, there will be applications where a Cirrus doesn't make sense, and others where it does
     
  26. MetalCloud

    MetalCloud Line Up and Wait

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    I have 1088 useful on my 22T. FIKI and AC (not a combo on the Ultra) and it's comfortable and safe af. If I need more useful load, then turboprop it is.

    Edits in italics
     
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2017
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  27. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    As I said, the useful load isn't so wunnerful. With 300+ HP the useful should be up around 1,500#.
     
  28. MetalCloud

    MetalCloud Line Up and Wait

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    You can get more if you drop some of the options. But turbo and fiki and ac were must-haves for me.
     
  29. teejayevans

    teejayevans Pattern Altitude

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    My bad, I assume all control rod systems were the same.
     
  30. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    The composite construction is heavy. This becomes particularly visible in the case of the rather underpowered (imo) SR-20. I'd imagine the manufacturing costs required to emulate the aerodynamic form factor of the cirrus in semi-monocoque metal would be prohibitive.
     
  31. Clip4

    Clip4 En-Route

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    The useful load is not good.
     
  32. FloridaPilot

    FloridaPilot Pattern Altitude

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    Well, not true there are quite a few airplanes with better useful, Lancair 4 has 1350 useful, Piper 235 (1973 model and above) 1,450 Useful...etc
     
  33. Tantalum

    Tantalum Pattern Altitude

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    Brings up another good point that newer versions of the same plane have lower usefuls as manufacturers have added weight