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Aug 08, 2009, 02:38 PM
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Any tips for my first flight with a mid-wing plane?


I've been flying a high wing trainer for some time and I want to transition to a mid-wing plane. I have a Great Planes Easy Sport 40 that has a Fox .40 engine. This is the ARF version which has a semi-symmetrical wing. When flying the high wing trainer, I never use the rudder except for nose wheel steering on the ground.

Is there anything important that I need to know before starting to fly this type of plane? All info or suggestions will be appreciated.

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Aug 08, 2009, 03:30 PM
Registered User
I don't think you'll notice a massive difference to be honest, but be aware of the following;

- Stability

Model is likely to be less auto stable, and so will need you to "fly" it a little more. As an example, when entering a bank angle, the model will probably hold that bank angle until you tell it to do something different. In some ways, this actually makes flying easier, as you are not "fighting" the inherant stability to the same extent.

- Agility

I would expect a snappier control response, but not a big enough difference to really worry you, but do start using the rudder, there's no point paying to have a servo in there, if you're not going to use it, it comes in handy for stall turns, flat turns and keeping loops and the like on track, as well as cross wind landings and such.

- Pitch stability and lift

If your previous trainer had a flat bottom section, then it would possibly have had more incidence and a more forward CG, making it more stable in pitch. In practical terms, what this amounts to is that on a trainer, put into a shallow dive, it will usually pull itself out. Less camber, and a more rearward CG reduces that characteristic, so bear that in mind when landing and taking off, where a trainer would probably take off by itself, the Easy Sport might not, so be aware of that.

Other than that, I personally think models like the Easy Sport are actually better trainers than many models designed for the job, they are easier to fly IMHO, but you have the scope to increase the control movements and get into some basic aerobatics.

Have fun, it'll be just fine, as will you!
Aug 09, 2009, 12:16 AM
In Massive Debt
Good Luck, as mentioned, shouldnt be too difficult for you, should just be slightly more responsive, the easy sports are great!
Aug 09, 2009, 06:08 PM
Bombs away! Err...landing
Ira NZ's Avatar
There's going to be, by my calculations, exactly 1.4% of the difference in flight characteristics of the two planes will be due to the wing being 3-4" lower.
Aug 18, 2009, 02:16 AM
Originally Posted by Ira NZ
There's going to be, by my calculations, exactly 1.4% of the difference in flight characteristics of the two planes will be due to the wing being 3-4" lower.
You must have forgot to subdivide the trexler enumerator by the periodic constant. I came up with 1.5% difference. Please do your calculation again and post your answer. We certainly don't want any misleading information to be gleaned from the avionic discussions on this informational diatribunal.
Aug 18, 2009, 07:59 AM
Closed Account
Given how you have described your abilities, my only suggestion would be to have your instructor take it up, trim it out and let you try it out. I won't recommend that you fly it yourself, unless you are confident of your abilities. The fact that you asked this question means you are not confident and that is O.K. If your instructor feels your ready, then go ahead. Asking the question here, where no one knows your capibilities, is almost a fruitless endeavor!
Aug 18, 2009, 09:01 AM
What goes up, will come down
Mulciber126's Avatar
haha I'm almost in the same boat. I dont think I'll be doing any maiden flights anytime soon, but I've been thinking of my second model and probably will get a stick or a low wing trainer. Someone let me fly their stick at the field ( one of my trainers) so apparently he felt confident in my skill enough to let me fly his plane ( I didn't lol so I quickly gave it back after a few minutes of flying) and I find that the other models are more touchy or responsive than trainers. That I think will be the hardest thing for me, although only flying it for a few minutes towards the end my turns and loops became more smoother. I think once you have the basics down the rest just need adjustments on how to fly. It's kinda like a car, some are faster and smoother steering than others, but you probably can drive them all well after a few miles of driving them :-D
Aug 19, 2009, 10:38 AM
Registered User
I transitioned from an Avistar to an Easy Sport quite easily. The Easy Sport is a blast to fly. Enjoy!
Aug 20, 2009, 12:59 PM
Registered User
Well, I had to wait for some decent weather, but I finally got the Easy Sport out to the field yesterday for its first flight. I flew my trainer a couple of times to "loosen up", then it was time to progress to "the next level".

Trying to get it in the air was worse than the flight. First I needed to fill it up, so I connected the fuel hose and proceeded to pump juice into the tank. However, after about three turns of the Six Shooter, fuel started to squirt out of the muffler/overflow line. HUH...??? The tank was supposed to be empty. Turns out that even though I had checked carefully when building, the fuel pickup and muffler pressure lines were reversed! Swapped them and now I could put fuel into the tank.

Choked it to fill the fuel line and get a little fuel into the engine. Connected the glow driver and put the starter on the spinner. The engine would hardly turn over. It turned over by hand just fine, but the starter had serious trouble. Borrowed a starter from another guy and it worked okay. So apparently, between starting the trainer and trying to start the Easy Sport, the batteries in the starter died.

Put the glow driver back on and spun the motor. No joy. Took out the plug and applied the glow driver. The plug barely lit. Put another battery in the glow driver...same thing. Borrowed a glow driver from the same "other guy" and it lit the plug nicely.

About this time, I started getting the feeling that Somebody was trying to tell me something, and I was considering taking the plane home and trying some other day. Luckily, on the way up to the field, I'd been listening to a song by my favorite metal group, Dokken, which was titled "Stick to Your Guns" (...don't give up, stick to your guns!), so I decided not to let circumstances defeat me. I got the motor running, adjusted the carburetor for high speed and idle, and proceeded to taxi out for takeoff. A nice smooth takeoff roll and the plane was in the air! It flew really well, but as mentioned above, I had to concentrate more on flying it than the naturally stable trainer. I had to leave the field after that one flight, but now I'm really fired up to do more flying and progress to another level. Thanks to all of you for the ideas and suggestions, and thanks also to Don Dokken for the encouragement.

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