Monday, September 12, 2011

Tested gross weight and aft most CG limits. To test the aft limit I flew off the fuel to only 6 gallons and then loaded the baggage compartment with 40lbs shoved to the far back. This is as close to the aft limit as I could get given the baggage hold limits.

Handling at rear CG was slightly lighter. Power-off and powered stall attempts, takeoffs and landings were about the same as solo/no gear.

Next I added 200lbs of sand bags and fueled up to 16 gallons. Starting DA was 2000'. This was also the most forward CG I could obtain according to the numbers.

Takeoff roll was about 300' and climb out was ~700~750FPM. Power-off stall attempts resulted in a lower nose attitude when the elevator lost authority. Poweron stall attempts also resulted in a lower nose attitude.

Landings were very different. The added mass gave the plane much more momentum and was harder to slow. With my standard final approach speed of 60 MPH, the sink rate was higher and the plane felt "faster".

On Sunday I found an issue with the control system. The baggage area was loaded, but in a slightly different way. This caused the piece of nylon I installed underneath the baggage area to shift. The end result was a snag that I felt in the controls check. It took about 30 minutes to locate it and then a few more minutes to fix it.

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