Switching between 152 and 172 during training

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by tangopapa, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. tangopapa

    tangopapa Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I'm post-solo and have been out on my own a few times now. This got me thinking... I've done all my training in the 172 so far, primarily because my CFI and I can't both fit in the 152. I'd like to get opinions on whether it would be a good idea to get some time in the 152 as well. I've heard from people who say it is a better primary trainer, and I've also heard people say it's more "fun" to fly the 152, slow(er) speed notwithstanding. To those who have flown both, do you find that to be the case?

    I don't see much of a downside at this stage. I'm only 14.4 hours in, 2.2 of which are PIC. I can see how it would be good to stick with the 172 closer to my checkride, but I'm wondering if I should get some solo time in the 152 now, or wait. Thoughts? I'll also be talking with my instructor about this, but wanted to get some feedback from this fine bunch of folks (YOU!) in the meantime.

    On a practical note, I'm 6'3", 190 lbs. I haven't even sat inside a 152 yet. So I welcome your opinions on the "comfort" factor as well.
     
  2. PBristolJr

    PBristolJr Line Up and Wait

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    We're the same size and I fit fine, the 152 will be cheaper to fly and you'll enjoy it more. It feels like a 172 with power steering on all the control surfaces. I don't see any reason not to get checked out in it and use it for your solo/XC flights and save some coin while having fun. PLUS, it's another tail number in your logbook. :wink2:
     
  3. Silvaire

    Silvaire En-Route

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    I think you'd save some money (especially on your x-country's) and you'd find it enjoyable. The slower speed isn't a factor since at this point you are looking to log time and not distance flown.
     
  4. marcoseddi

    marcoseddi Cleared for Takeoff

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  5. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

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    I recommend strongly against it. You don't have enough experience that you can be really comfortable in even one type, no less two, so you should be getting all the practice you can in the type in which you'll be taking the practical test. Going back and forth now is just asking for negative training transfer issues -- the Law of Exercise would be working against you. Stick with the one until you get your PP.
     
  6. Van Johnston

    Van Johnston Cleared for Takeoff

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    I was your size when I did my training 25+ years ago. I started in 152s, and did all my X-Cs and started prepping for the checkride in them till my training was involuntarily interrupte. When I resumed 9 months later, I transitioned into 172s and prepared for my checkride again. Then I got sent away for 2 months for work. Rather than lay off another 2 months, I went to another FBO to get the checkride done, and they put me back in 152s. So I went back and forth in blocks, but never from one day to the next. I think Ron makes a good point about being too green right now to bounce back and forth.
     
  7. HighFlyingA380

    HighFlyingA380 Cleared for Takeoff

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    I'm with Ron; I wouldn't worry about it now. Really about the only benefit would be saving a couple bucks, but I feel it's outweighed be the negatives which Ron mentioned.

    I started my primary training in a DA-20, but the owner decided to pull his lease-back aircraft and I was forced to transition to the 172. While it only took a few hours of landing practice until I was again signed off for solo, It took much longer to truly become comfortable with the feel of it.

    Again, I'd advise against it. Stick with the 172 and finish up your license. After than, then absolutely get checked out in it and have some fun!
     
  8. MAKG1

    MAKG1 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    There is the additional complication that you need a new solo endorsement for the 152, and your instructor would need to fit in there with you to do that. This may or may not be a W&B issue.

    The transition is not too difficult, but they aren't the same. At your stage, hunting for the tach while in the pattern is a problem (it's in a different place), and the sight picture is somewhat different.

    You have BOTH time and distance requirements for your cross-countries. This can be done with a 152, but it's not going to save you as much as you might think.

    Concentrate on the goal.
     
  9. Tony_Scarpelli

    Tony_Scarpelli Pattern Altitude

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    Capt Levy is probably the single most experienced, professional, CFI I know. While I might have disagreed with him from time to time on some items I never question his advice as it pertains to Training.

    The risk reward doesn't seem to be with you. You got more to loose then you do to gain.
     
  10. tangopapa

    tangopapa Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Thank you all for your input. I'm going to follow Ron's advice and stick with the 172 until I get my ticket, after which I'll promptly get checked out in the 152. I was just jumping the gun a little bit.
     
  11. flav8r

    flav8r Line Up and Wait

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    I think you've made a very wise choice. Once you have your PPL you can then go and get checked out on as many singles as you wish with no adverse risk to your training.
    The 152 is definitely a great little plane to putt around in, but after you have your PPL you're going to find that the 172 is more fun to take your friends out in for that $100 hamburger. :yes:
     
  12. OrangeOkie

    OrangeOkie Pre-Flight

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    Good headwork!:yes:
     
  13. tangopapa

    tangopapa Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Thanks.

    I really think it helps to stay focused when you have a goal, not just in this case, but life in general. I'm the type of person who likes to juggle lots of different things at the same time, so it's a little difficult to narrow focus sometimes, but I really think I'll finish sooner and learn more if I stick in the same aircraft. I don't mean to discount any of the folks who were on the "pro" 152 side of the argument...I definitely will take those comments to heart, but there will be plenty of time to get endorsed in the 152. Most likely, immediately after my checkride. :D

    As an aside, I think I'll be doing tailwheel training in a few months. My FBO has a Cub that is hibernating for the winter. :)
     
  14. rcpilot

    rcpilot Pre-Flight

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    I did this, I'm also 6'3" and have no trouble fitting in it, but climbing in is a bit of an endeavor.

    They fly very similar. In general, if you knew nothing about the 152 and subtracted 5 from all the recommended speeds of the 172 (takeoff, glide, landing, rotate, etc) you'd be pretty damn close. The 152 is more sensitive to wind (obviously), suffers less from differential thrust on takeoff, and flies easier without trimming (a lot of people who fly exclusively a 152 end up not trimming properly and trying to fight it once they get in a bigger plane).

    I switched because I'm not heavy and figured it would perform fine on my solos. I climb as fast as my buddy in the 172, (~600FPM from 5000), but the characteristics change a lot if flying dual (it drops to like 380 whereas the 172 will still do 480-500). It saves me $35/hr but mine only has one NAV/COM and no ADB. It's definitely more workload on the radio side, but if you're ready for it I don't think it's going to make you a worse pilot, having the extra equipment is easier.
     
  15. yakdriver

    yakdriver Cleared for Takeoff

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    I flew both, actually all three 150, 152 and 172 in training and switched back and forth between them with no problem at all. I did my checkride at exactly 35 hrs so it didn't hold me back at all. Don
     
  16. marcoseddi

    marcoseddi Cleared for Takeoff

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    That sounds good.
     
  17. Silvaire

    Silvaire En-Route

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    You might be blowing this a bit out of proportion. I disagree with Ron, the 172 is easier to fly than the 150, it's not as good a trainer. Might be more comfortable for the instructor but it's just not as challenging for the student, nor is it as much fun. Solo in a 150 is down right fun.
     
  18. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I did almost all my training in a 152 (at 6000' field elevation even). I did a couple of dual XC's in the 172 (ok one we did so we could take the flight school secretary along with us, but hey). Frankly, while the switch isn't much, it's easier not to switch, and the 152 is so much easier to put where you want it. I had one of my instructors challenge me to a spot landing contest during a BFR once a few years back after I had been flying 172's we were in his 152 sparrow hawk. I beat him no problem.
     
  19. tangopapa

    tangopapa Pre-takeoff checklist

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    That's possible.
     
  20. CBeaulieu

    CBeaulieu Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Is that a 150hp C152?
     
  21. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Yeah, that thing is a hoot. Not much additional top end speed but boy it climbs like a bat out of hell. This coupled with the fact that the 152 (much maligned) isn't a bad performer to begin with. A 152 at gross will out climb a 172 at gross.
     
  22. CBeaulieu

    CBeaulieu Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Those do sound like fun!
     
  23. texasag93

    texasag93 Line Up and Wait

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    During training for my PPL, I moved from a Piper 140 to a Cessna 172 and it was not a problem.
     
  24. Shepherd

    Shepherd En-Route

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    Just my opinion (and my instructors opinion, all those years ago).
    If you don't have a passion for flying, find something else to do with your time.
    Fly some different airplanes. Fly a Tecnam, a C152, a C172, and a low wing Piper. Get a feel for the differences in airplanes, for the layouts in different airplanes. The whole point of learning to fly is learning and gaining experience. Every experience you learn from is good experience. Be bold, live the dream.
     
  25. skynewbie

    skynewbie Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I started out on the 152 but as a big guy 200lbs, it was a week bit small for me. So I went to the 172N/M then to 172SP which was a lot nicer and more comfortable for cross country. Not difficult to switch either. However, I do have to trim on the 172 a lot more than on the smaller 152.
     
  26. tinerj

    tinerj Cleared for Takeoff

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    The C150 and C172 are so much alike there is really no difference in them. I flew a C150 at first and then switched to C172 for instrument training.

    The C150 had speeds marked in statute miles, and the C172 in knots. But the *numbers* for rotate, Vx, Vy, stall, etc., were the same.
     
  27. skypark

    skypark Filing Flight Plan

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    I did exactly what you are talking about. Worked out really well for me. The 152 is a lot less sensitive on the controls as it is a slower aircraft and that let me learn things I might not have in the 172 Heavy. Conversely the 180hp 172 gave me a healthy does of respect for how fast things occur in a faster more powerful airplane. I think my training was better having switched planes.

    Just my 2 cents.