Thrust
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The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Sat Nov 27, 2004 5:43 am

For all you pilots out there, what in your opinion is the most difficult plane to pilot?
Fly one thing; Fly it well
 
2H4
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Sat Nov 27, 2004 5:53 am



I've heard the Wright Flyer has this "honor".


2H4

Intentionally Left Blank
 
September11
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Sat Nov 27, 2004 6:21 am

I would imagine that Concorde would be most difficult plane for pilots to fly.
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HaveBlue
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Sat Nov 27, 2004 7:44 am

The XF-85 Goblin would definitely be a contender, which is why it didn't enter service. The test pilots had enough trouble with it that they determined a normal Air Force line pilot would not be able to handle it. Don't feel like linking a picture of it atm, but it was the parasite fighter to be carried under the B-36 mothership. It actually did trials dropping from and reattaching to the B-29.

The Ryan XV-13 Vertijet was quite difficult, at least in landing and take off phase.

The Kestrel and early Harriers (up to the McDonnell Douglas AV-8B) were also known to be very difficult.
Here Here for Severe Clear!
 
767-332ER
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Sun Nov 28, 2004 9:50 pm


From what I've read, the MD-11 is actually not an easy aircraft to land and fly due to the small horizontal stabilizer.
Regards
Twinjets...if one fails, work the other one twice as hard!!!
 
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jumbojim747
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Tue Nov 30, 2004 7:54 pm

767-332ER
I know from pilots who have flown the MD11/DC10 who claim that they are a dream to fly and handle well .
I One heard that a captain compared them to flying a fighter.
I think because they handled so well is because of the tail engine given the aircraft great balance.
On a wing and a prayer
 
Thom@s
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Tue Nov 30, 2004 8:58 pm

I've heared that the F-16 is difficult to land. Never had the honour to find out...

Thom@s
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NWADC9
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Wed Dec 01, 2004 1:13 am

The Cessna 172M is hard for me to fly. Mainly because I only flew it once and I would freak out if the plane made the slightest bank Laugh out loud
I convert Jet A and 100LL into noise.
 
Thrust
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Wed Dec 01, 2004 7:08 am

I've heard that the 747 is among the easiest aircraft fly. pilots have said that the aircraft almost lands itself....I would think that the unusual position of the cockpit would have to make it a little bit unusual to fly at least.
Fly one thing; Fly it well
 
b741
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Wed Dec 01, 2004 9:40 am

I heard the B-26 and F-104 were difficult. Probably most fighters, as you need to keep up the practice.
Being Bilingual, I Speak English And Aviation
 
767-332ER
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Wed Dec 01, 2004 10:10 am


JumboJim,

I didn't include the DC-10 in there. I've heard from reading some old MD books and talking to a couple of Delta pilots about the stability issues when landing...yes, the third engine adds balance, but the MD-11's horizontal stabilizer being so small has been one issue that has plagued the a/c, along with other shortcomings.
Regards
Twinjets...if one fails, work the other one twice as hard!!!
 
Thrust
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Wed Dec 01, 2004 1:18 pm

Actually, I read that the first five 727s in production crashed within months of each other because pilots did not stick religiously to the flight manual. THe 727 is difficult to fly, but among the HARDEST to fly I've ever heard of are the Harrier jets in the military. THose things have crashed so many times it is unbelievable. They have had by far the highest accidental rate of any jet ever built.
Fly one thing; Fly it well
 
CougarAviator
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Thu Dec 02, 2004 1:24 am

I'm told the 727 was a difficult plane to land. I was told this by a 767 Captain, who used to fly 727's.
Failure is not an option.....
 
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Luxair
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Thu Dec 02, 2004 1:35 am

I think that we can add the Mitsubishi MU-2 on that list too!!
 
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jumbojim747
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Thu Dec 02, 2004 5:33 am

767-332ER
My apologies for adding the DC10 i know you didn't mention it .
Thrust
Actually, I read that the first five 727s in production crashed within months of each other because pilots did not stick religiously to the flight manual
I don't think that was the case .
Excuse me if im wrong here but i didn't think pilots flew aircraft primary on the manuals.
Cheers
On a wing and a prayer
 
AdamWright
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Thu Dec 02, 2004 12:46 pm

I've been told by Regional Pilots that the EMB-120 is one of the hardest planes to learn.

-Adam
 
fanofjets
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Thu Dec 02, 2004 1:19 pm

The Convair XV-1 Pogo (and its Lockheed counterpart) was a snap to take off in but landing the thing back on its tail was another matter. The Air Force even added a temporary fixed conventional landing gear, defeating the whole purpose.
The aeroplane has unveiled for us the true face of the earth. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
 
SlamClick
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Sat Dec 04, 2004 3:41 am

One of the problems with the early 727 was that the captains were mostly not experienced with swept-wing aircraft. You simply cannot fly, and especially land, a swept-wing jet like you do a straight-wing recip. For one thing if you get a big sinker going and you pull the nose up, in a swept wing, all you accomplish is to drive the mains into the ground harder. You can change the aircraft attitude but it is not going to do anything about the sink rate.

Personal hardest to fly was the Hiller OH-23B.

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Photo © Tom Turner


It had 200 HP at sea level. I never had the privilege of flying it at sea level. It used control paddles on the main rotor head (check out the paddle angle at top center) which used aerodynamics instead of gyroscopic rigidity like you would get with the Bell helicopter stabilizer bars. So above about eight to ten thousand density altitude the control paddles were starting to approach stall angle. It got very sloppy and, frankly, scared me when it got like that. A tip of my hat to those who flew more powerful Hillers at higher elevations.




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caboclo
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Tue Dec 14, 2004 8:25 am

I expect the SR-71 and U2 would be in the running. Also the AN-2 has been credited with "training an entire generation of Russian weightlifters." Can't remember what book I read that in. Depending on your definition of "airplane", the Osprey tiltrotor certainly doesn't seem forgiving. You wouldn't think a freighter would be that difficult, but the AN-225 has no fewer than six cockpit crewmember stations. And I'll second the motion for the F-104; forget the "engine with wings" analogy, that was just an engine with control surfaces!
Freight dogs have more fun
 
dl021
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Tue Dec 14, 2004 11:31 am

The flight envelope of the U-2 is so limited that a variance of a few knots either way of cruise would cause a stall or the wings to fall off. Pilots land the things on bicycle landing gear with wings longer than the fuselage and are unable to see the ground once they are below 50 feet (they have to use a high speed chase car with another pilot at the wheel radioing position information). Because they fly at ultra high altitude they have to do all of this wearing a very bulky pressure suit, and they do this all for 12 to 16 hour flights.

I think that probably qualifies this as the most difficult aircraft in regular service to fly.
Is my Pan Am ticket to the moon still good?
 
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TupolevTu154
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Sat Dec 18, 2004 8:41 pm

Here is the XF-85 Goblin you were talkiing about HaveBlue


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Photo © AirNikon


Weird! Nuts

Tom
 
ArmitageShanks
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Sun Dec 19, 2004 2:01 am

I don't know about the most difficult plane to fly, but I have great respect for tailwheel pilots. They are very hard to get used to landing.
 
Thrust
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Wed Dec 22, 2004 6:02 am

Jumbojim747, actually, it is the case. Pilots discovered they had to use the flight manual to avoid 727 crashes like the first five accidents. It is quoted in one of my airplane books. BTW, wasn't the first five 727s in production that crashed...but five 727s in the early stages of production did crash within months of each other. they were the first five 727 accidents. BTW, why is the Harrier so hard to fly? i have read over 50% of their accidents have been attributed to pilot error.
Fly one thing; Fly it well
 
roseflyer
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Wed Dec 22, 2004 7:17 am

The harrier is an inherently unstable airplane to fly. It was designed that way. The way that it redirects air flow downwards is a hassle for pilots to deal with. On the early versions, computer systems were not sophisticated enough to handle all of the difficulty associated with learning. This is compounded by the fact that very few pilots get the necessary hours on the plane. In the early years there were so many failures and problems that less experienced pilots started to get less and less time on the plane. Some pilots got something like 4-6 hours of time in the plane per month on a plane that deserves 5 times that much for just minimal practice. The harrier is an unforgiving plane. Small mistakes can lead to full losses. It is a plane that requires a lot of practice, and unfortunately in budget controlled militaries, there aren't enough resources to properly train and fly all of them at top condition.

The new joint strike fighter will hopefully alleviate these problems with the addition of the lift fan in addition to directing airflow downwards. It is a much more stable design and also will have sophisticated computer systems to help control it.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
 
aa777jr
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Wed Dec 22, 2004 7:38 am

My CFI flys for AA on 757/767 and is scared of the Bus AA use!  Smile
A liberal is a man who is right most of the time, but he's right too soon.
 
BA380
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Thu Dec 23, 2004 6:59 pm

i agree with September 11 that Concorde would be the most difficult to fly. First you would have to subtely attach some working engines, then secretly drive a refuelling tanker into a museum, and then hope that there was some juice left in the battery and that the brickwork is not to solid in the walls, before barging through the walls and taking off on a local road....  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
cabin crew: doors to automatic and cross-check...
 
aa777jr
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RE: The Most Difficult Plane To Fly

Sat Dec 25, 2004 6:52 pm

above post is lame

i've accutally read reports online of former BA and AF Concorde pilots, now flying 747 or A340, that say, the Concorde was a joy to fly.
A liberal is a man who is right most of the time, but he's right too soon.

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