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Author Topic: wheel pants or not?  (Read 4066 times)

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Papa Chuck

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wheel pants or not?
« on: August 04, 2009, 10:22:32 AM »
I just stepped down from a Skylane to a Sparrowhawk. Every pound counts, now. Any thoughts on the tradeoffs in performance (cruise) vs. the increase in payload with or without the wheel pants? I'm for sure taking off the nose pant, since the darn thing shimmy's like a belly dancer at the slightest provocation...even after having the dampner overhauled...ugh! Sure appreciate your thoughts.

MRC
Mark Ceccarelli
1978 Cessna 172N
N724WG

davidh

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2009, 12:19:21 PM »
How big of a hurry are you really in anyway, if you're flying a 150?  ::)

I say that as a 150 owner myself, of course.  No wheel pants on mine.

I think they (wheel pants) aren't worth the downsides (the weight, opportunities for getting mud/grass/crud in there, etc.).

Maybe I just I like being able to look out the window and see the tires....
David Herman
N6170T - 1965 Cessna 150E
Boeing Field, Seattle, WA

faintfuzzy

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2009, 12:26:23 PM »
It's a bit easier to do a thorough preflight without the spats in the way, and as Dave said, easier to operate off of grass...That said, sure wish I had a pair to dress up the Vag.

Rodg (are we going formal tonight?) Petersen
Cessna 140
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Fall City 1WA6

Les

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2009, 02:36:38 PM »
So ........

Your new handle - Sparrowhawkguy?
- Les
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wjfyfe

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2009, 03:41:12 PM »
My wife like the wheel pants. And my thoughts when we owned the 100HP 150? If conditions are such where 18 pounds is going to make a difference whether the airplane safely flies or not, it probably is best that one just stays on the ground.

With the 150/150 the pants do make a noticeable difference in cruise speed. Before pants it would show 120-125MPH cruise. With the pants we see 130MPH quite consistently. So you too might see more benefit from the pants with your Sparrowhawk over the standard 152.

About that shimmy? Go through and add washers and asuch as needed to the torque links to tighten them up some. Also try running lower tire pressure in the nose tire.

You also may want to be careful about just pulling off the nose pant and leaving the main pants installed. It can be argued that this is not legal............

Bill
Grants Pass, Oregon
« Last Edit: August 04, 2009, 03:47:48 PM by wjfyfe »

Dave B

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2009, 04:39:03 PM »
I LOVE MY WHEEL PANTS!!  And am willing to remove/reinstall them as necessary to air up the tires.

They look much nicer than JUST tires.  Speed?? I dunno, nor care, much.  ;D
Dave B.,   OLM
STOL Cherokee 160
Challenger II  ('lil bird)  My LSA
Loehle P-5151 Mustang- in progress
Mitchell Wing U-2- in progress
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JohnH

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2009, 04:42:49 PM »
On the Cherokee I gained a few knots by removing the pants. Yes I know it's a completly different animal than the C-152.

I gained back the knots I lost by shelling out a lot of $$$ for wheel pant fairings, IMHO all planes look better with pants on.   Too bad retractables have to sit there with the pants off.
John Hubbard
Plane-less in
CYCD

Dave B

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2009, 05:05:54 PM »
I could just imagine John without pants on.

On second thot, NO I COULDN'T!!!   ::)
Dave B.,   OLM
STOL Cherokee 160
Challenger II  ('lil bird)  My LSA
Loehle P-5151 Mustang- in progress
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JohnH

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2009, 05:35:49 PM »
LOL
 ;D
 :o
John Hubbard
Plane-less in
CYCD

Al Gilson

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2009, 05:56:50 PM »
I could just imagine John without pants on.

On second thot, NO I COULDN'T!!!   ::)

Yikes!  This is scary!

Al (I'll just close my eyes) Gilson
Al (insert witty statement here) Gilson
1964 Skyhawk-N3082U  "The Rocket"
KSFF Spokane, WA
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Les

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2009, 08:13:56 PM »
Too bad retractables have to sit there with the pants off.

Three Charlie Mike likes her pants off.
- Les
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Klaus

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2009, 10:06:47 PM »
I'm for sure taking off the nose pant, since the darn thing shimmy's like a belly dancer at the slightest provocation...even after having the dampner overhauled...ugh! Sure appreciate your thoughts.

    Wheel pants are a great discussion, lots of pros and cons.

    The real issue is the nose shimmy.....

    Over the many years of trying to solve the wheel shimmy dilemma, I finally can help you end and prevent the shimmy.
     Tires are made of rubber and lots of cord. When the cord and the rubber are broke free of each other the tread then becomes soft and loose. This loose outer tread then starts to wonder and the tire searches for a direction and shimmies. Replacing the tire will end the shimmy.
    The cause of most shimmies has been found to be excessive nose pressure at high speeds. Other words "wheelbarrow". It only takes once, but if the plane is allowed to land on it's nose tire first or hit hard while landing the outer tread and the cord bond will be broken. Maybe the situation was unpreventable like a hard crosswind landing with lots of rudder applied when the nose wheel makes contact, sideways.

    The damage done to an Amphibious float landing gear is huge when a nose wheel shimmy is allowed to persist. We had to solve and understand exactly what caused shimming. This holds true to tail wheel shimmy also......


   Hope this works for you, If it doesn't..... there maybe another problem which we'll need to discuss....  :'( :(

     Klaus(Maintenance Tip of the Day)Marx
Klaus Marx
        N6802B
1956 Tailwheel Piper Pacer PA-22/20-150
Juneau, AK (PAJN) & East Wenatchee, WA (KEAT)

hotrod150

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2009, 11:06:25 AM »
I just stepped down from a Skylane to a Sparrowhawk. ....

  Exactly what is a Sparrowhawk? My impression is that it is a C152 with the 125-horse Sensenich prop mod.   ???
  IMHO most airplanes look better without the wheel panties, esp taildraggers, so unmless they really add to the spped or climb rate I don't care for them. I like a slightly oversized tire which doesn't usually work out with panties, so it's a moot point for me anyway.
  What really looks goofy to me is wheel panties on the mains & a bare nosewheel, or vice versa. No offense if your airplane's set up that way. I have seen an old M4-145 Maule a couple times in the Portland area which had only one wheel "spat", as Maule calls the teardrop-shaped behind-the-wheel speed fairing. I figured the guy just lost one, but when I saw it again years later still with only one spat I figured maybe that's how he got it to fly straight.    :D

Eric

 
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Papa Chuck

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2009, 05:51:03 PM »
Wow! Thanks for all the great feedback, everybody. Think I'm gonna keep 'em and try some of the other stuff to mitigate the shimmy (It doesn't happen all that often). Handle change to Sparrowhawkguy? Probably not. The mod is composed of a Sensenich Prop and different spinner, in addition to high compression pistons and cylinders with re-baffling. Got 125mph cruise down to Eugene this past weekend with marginal winds aloft on about 7gph. I was pretty happy with that...and it spins!
Mark Ceccarelli
1978 Cessna 172N
N724WG

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Re: wheel pants or not?
« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2009, 06:26:28 PM »
I used to suffer with shimmy on my 172. Everything was checked out and everything was ok. I then fitted a Lord Steering Damper and haven't suffered with a shimmy since. It is STC'd, just bolts straight on, requires no maintenance but does cost $500+. I have never regretted spending the money on it.

As for the question of pants on or off, I have always had them on. I have operated from many grass strips and still do today and have never experienced a problem using them. They do make maintenance and pre-flights slightly more complicated but it's a price I'm prepared to pay for the increased cruise speed and the prevention of throwing stones up when operating from the rougher runways.
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