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Thread: Which tailwheel aircraft that are most/least prone to groundloop?

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    northern alaska


    Quote Originally Posted by algonquin View Post
    Oh boy here we go,LOL, my guess would be a early PA20, with the early narrow gear and upgraded engine, O-320-150 or 160hp.
    Agree, along with the early Maules, I'll never forget the guy who worked all winter with Glenn Wyatt, rebuilding his Colt. He wrecked it again in the Spring on the first test flight! Never got it airborne off the big runway at Fairbanks International!!!

  2. #22


    I will give this a shot, others feel free to correct me or add comments as needed.
    Answers to questions.

    1. It is a inertia/lever arm thing. Once you get the weight moving to right or left the more weight the harder to correct.

    2. Yes, and yes (if you added weight that far back)

    3. Yes, however, the sideway inertia of the big motor still comes into play once a swerve is started for whatever reason.

    4. Yes, however, one of the reasons to run large tires/longer gear is increased AOA for takeoff and prop clearance. The problem with this is a visual issue, wheel landings remove this issue(until you set the tail down). A taller tailwheel/spring will decrease AOA, not a huge issue to most but a issue for some pilots. Also now you have more weight way back at the tail. A larger tail will most always help with control issues.

    5. Cessna spring gear is fast and fine if flown properly, however, it tends to tuck under more than say cub gear with a side load. Soft sidewall tires tend to make it worse. Cessna 185/180 from a handling perspective on landing, I would say it is not so much the engine power but the weight of the plane, I think later Cessna 180/185 have the same gear (I could be wrong) Cessna 170 even with a smaller tail and spring gear handle nice.

    Like I posted it is the pilot not the plane that is usually the issue. The key is to keep the plane going straight!! Be it on one, two, or all three wheels. Proper use of rudder, aileron, throttle, and brake sometimes all at the same time. I think many ground loops can be prevented with proper brake use, use them early and often. Just the tap of a brake has saved this slow reflex pilot many the time.

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