RAF 2000 within driving distance of Tulsa?

gd5362

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I have a sparrowhawk and have flown several RAF's and have never experienced these stability issues mentioned. The sparrowhawk is certainly roomier but it's a lot heavier and not in my opinion as responsive as the RAF but I got it for the room. I might caution you about the weight however if you seriously consider the sparrow, mine was registered at 1500# so you can't fly it with a light sport license. Last time I talked to him Mike Burton was building a sparrow for sale and is an expert on them so maybe someone you could call if interested. For parts, whatever I have needed if I couldn't find it Mike could and the factory still has some parts available. Not to sound like a broke record but call and ask questions, Mike and Ron are both experts in these specific machines.
 

Chopper Reid

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Are you suggesting I stay away from an RAF?
YES !!!! The RAF is a high thrust line gyro, they have killed many good pilots. True, they look a million dollera but they are from the 80 's ....70's era, thankfully, we have moved on to gyros that are now very stable, that are proven long distance machines AND are comfortable to sit in & A joy to fly.

You will hear the old argument, " I have X amount of hours ...blah blah & nothing has happened to me " but with HTL gyros, when they go over, there's no apperent warning otherwise we would have pilots telling about being near the edge or feeling the edge just before it goes over. Yes, we do have pilots with a few hours in RAFS but many are like me that have good " feel" & back off the power & keep that stick with back pressure.

I didnt know the difernce between a " stable" gyro & a HTL machine but I do now & its chalk & cheese & the stable gyro is just so much more fun to fly plus its way way safer so that if I did drop my guard for a milli second, I'm not going to be another fatal !!


Think about it for a second, " do you want to increase the chance of you becoming another fatal?"


Why put your head in the lions mouth cause the bear looked attractive ???
 

GyroRon

Former Gyro know it all
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And as for insurance mine was $1,560.00 for the 1 mill liability only.
And I paid under 500$ a year for a million in liability PLUS full hull coverage for my four seat piper!

I would be less worried about liability in a gyro, I would want hull coverage. I would be scared of the gyro getting damaged on a trailer or in the hangar or me having a tip over or something. especially on a gyro that I have 60-80 thousand dollars into.

Two or three years ago, one of our forum members had storms go through his area and a tornado went right over his hangar. It literally shredded his RAF 2000. I don't remember there being anything at all that was salvageable. So whatever money he had invested in that gyro was more or less completely lost. I would be upset if I lost 5 grand, I would be tore up if I lost 10 grand, but I would be devastated if I lost 80 grand.
 

InsideTrader

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Oct 14, 2014
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YES !!!! The RAF is a high thrust line gyro, they have killed many good pilots. True, they look a million dollera but they are from the 80 's ....70's era, thankfully, we have moved on to gyros that are now very stable, that are proven long distance machines AND are comfortable to sit in & A joy to fly.

You will hear the old argument, " I have X amount of hours ...blah blah & nothing has happened to me " but with HTL gyros, when they go over, there's no apperent warning otherwise we would have pilots telling about being near the edge or feeling the edge just before it goes over. Yes, we do have pilots with a few hours in RAFS but many are like me that have good " feel" & back off the power & keep that stick with back pressure.

I didnt know the difernce between a " stable" gyro & a HTL machine but I do now & its chalk & cheese & the stable gyro is just so much more fun to fly plus its way way safer so that if I did drop my guard for a milli second, I'm not going to be another fatal !!


Think about it for a second, " do you want to increase the chance of you becoming another fatal?"


Why put your head in the lions mouth cause the bear looked attractive ???
Then what gyro(s) are you recommending? What do you fly?
 

MadMuz

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Old pilots have learned that the throttle can be pulled back as necessary,even at my

density altitude I pull power back right after takeoff. the extra power will get you out of

trouble just as easy as it will get you in it.

best regards,eddie.....

With all due respect, that is a very broad statement Eddie, and not something that beginner pilots should take to heart in my opinion. Obviously it depends on the type of gyro, the performance for the weight it is carrying and the existence of obsticals the machine needs to clear.... I have always used the system of using your normal power for takeoff (usually full power in my stick frame type gyro) and once obsticals are cleared and am established in the appropriate climb out speed and angle, power can be backed off to a degree suitable..... if a new pilot were to do as you say and once off the ground pull the power back a lot.... they may well end up wallowing into something they really didn't want to hit. A experienced pilot in a very high performance machine may well adopt the technique you mention, but new or low hour pilots should follow what their instructor taught them or that they find works best in their machine.... but as to pulling the power right back after takeoff, I doubt any instructor would instill this into students?

Just saying:yo:
 

InsideTrader

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It seems pretty consistent on here that the RAF dislikers seem to dislike them for stability reasons. I have heard no other reasons why an RAF will kill me. People seem to agree that the Magnis are pretty stable. They have their trust line a little above the vertical center of gravity but I'm told they are stable because they have ample horizontal stabilizers and that horizontal stabilizer is in the prop wash. Well I'm no engineer but...

The RAFs can have their engines lowered. I don't know how that's done but I'm told it's doable. A LOT of people seem to be putting horizontal stabilizers on them and some of those stabilizers seem to get pretty high praise. So my question is... Why can't a keel be designed to raise an existing horizontal stabilizer so it sits in the prop wash? I would think these things combined compensate for and prevent a PPO. Is the tail already as high as it will go without hitting the rotor? And if it is, why not design a horizontal and vertical stabilizer combination that mounts the horizontal stabilizer at the top of the vertical stabilizer similar to aircraft like the Piaggio P-180 and many other aircraft?
 

eddie

RAF, turbo subaru 230hp
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MADMUZ. I swing a 5 bladed prop 5,100 on take off my engine produces 230hp,the

torque effect is very uncomfortable at full power,I pull power back to 4,600 and still

climb 700fpm @ 80 mph,I left full power in and leveled off and went past 120 mph in less

than 1,000ft.with this much power available there is never a time that I am behind the

power curve.I was talking about my RAF which is a one of a kind,only a idiot would pull

power right after lift off in a lesser powered machine.


best regards,eddie.....
 

Chopper Reid

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Then what gyro(s) are you recommending? What do you fly?
I dont recommend one brand over another but most of the European...MTO, ELA . Magni & of course, you have the sportcopter which I believe is another " stable" gyro" & there's probably other's that I have forgotten to mention.

I fly a gyro thats is built by Peter Green, not sure how many gyros he has built but to my knowledge, none of his gyros have graced the accident / fatal reports. They one I have seems to be very stable in all conditions, now the gyro I flew before is a HTL gyro and having done approx 5,000 hours in it working I do have a very personal relationship with this gyro & I know that if I push the envelope it can bite eg, in a thermal/ whirly whirly its necessary to back of the power because it develops a nose down attitude & " feels" uncomfortable so I back of power, keep a firm pressure backstick & all is well where as this gyro doesnt care if I blast through a whirly full rip...just gives a bit of a twitch going through & thats it plus at straight & level on a very calm day, the HTL gyro gets nose low as power is increased where as this gyro stays straight & level all the way to WOT & does not feel airy fairy at any time.

I have flown in a ELA & a MTO and they flew very nicely, fairly heavy on the controls but despite being put in awkward situations, they did not exhibit any bad manners & felt really solid through the entire flight. We have a number of the European gyros out here for some time & the owners are flying very long distances in varied weather conditions having an absolute blast doing lots of hours, that reinforces my mind that says they are a lovely safe stable gyro. Now, the same cannot be said for the RAF unfortuantely despite the fact it looks so inviting. Yes, I know, put a stab on it and do this and that etc etc & you have a gyro...well, thats not all the problem, out here we have seen many other problems that just make them yesterdays gyro & worse than that just plain dangerous !!

I know cost is sometimes a factor but what is your life worth ? I used to think a Rotax 912 / 914 were way way overpriced but after doing a couple of hundred hours with a 912 rotax, I reckon they are worth every cent !!

Thats just my thoughts for free !!!
 

GyroRon

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A magni is also considered " stable " because it has Unusually constructed and shaped rotorblades that make for a very heavy stick, its slow to respond to inputs and makes it harder to get into PIO or to get into a low G situation, which is where having a high thrustline can cause problems.
 

GyroRon

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There isn't really any enclosed gyros out there made here in the USA other than RAF ( which was really made in canada ) and sparrowhawk. There are very rare and hard to find birds like the rare RF-170, and a handful of other one off's, but in the realm of affordable enclosed two place gyros there isn't much to chose from other than RAF and sparrowhawk.

If you want a standard category machine, there is the J-2, and they are reasonably priced, but they are pricey to service and keep flying, and you will need a full private gyro rating to fly.

Short of that, your choices will be mostly open framed or open framed with pods, mostly tandem two seat gyros such as Dominators, Aircommands, Snowbirds, Parsons, Golden Butterflys, etc... Which are all great machines but your out in the elements and you got no cabin heat for sure!

Other choices are going to be the new crop of euro gyros and also the new Sportcopter II which looks great but is also priced inline with the euro gyros.

What alot of people do, is buy a two seat airplane for giving your friends and family rides and then get a nice single seat gyro for your own thrills and fun. You can buy a decent Cessna 150 for under 20 grand, and they barely use any gas, are dirt cheap to insure and can be tied down outside and annuals and maintenance cost little... Then for another 8-15 grand you can get a really nice single seat gyro.
 

MadMuz

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I think what Chopper is meaning, is that the RAF is now an old design, high thrustline and have proven over time to be a somewhat ...... less than safe design.... in their original state they have proven to be quite dangerous. They can have modifications made to make them 'quite safe' but the high thrust line leaves the inherent danger present. 57 Chev cars were awesome in their day, but they are old school now, they have been superseded.... RAF's were ok in their day (although unstable) and they (their design has become superseded. Some people (me included) love 57 chevs, they fit them with modern brakes, modern suspension, more modern engines and running gear so they can enjoy their 57 but it has been made safer with better components and running gear.

I bet some of the RAF guys on here have beautiful machines that fly well, but they would likely (hopefully) have been modernised and upgraded with better components and a decent horizontal stabilizer to mask the known instability, but I am guessing that upgraded RAF machine owners would probably not recommend an RAF, especially one that may not have all of the upgrades, to a novice pilot? Nor would I, but I say again, I am not knocking or diminishing the beautiful examples of upgraded RAFs still flying well.

If someone buys a 57 chev and spends huge amounts of money upgrading it, when selling it, it is just a 57 chev, unless it is immaculate, most of the money and work will not be able to be recouped. If someone buys an RAF and spends thousands of dollars upgrading it, when it comes to selling it, it is still an RAF and has the stigma to go along with it (bad rep) so large amounts of money spent on it in upgrading, will largely be at risk of getting lost....

What has made you interested in the RAF? You have obviously got your heart set on one? For what reason? What started your interest? Hopefully you will find someone with one near you and you can go for a test flight, at least you will have more knowledge now to help you make up your own mind.... as long as you keep in mind if you do get one, should you ever want to sell it, you will likely encounter all of the issues of the bad reputation that have been mentioned in this and other threads on RAF's and their issues....

Good luck with your endeavors tho :yo:
 

drtomcor

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Springfield, mo
I have trained with Ron Menzie in his RAF with tall tail, and I would never want one!

The 90 degree seat is a back killer, and it just seemed heavy and slow. I hope most of the others are a lot more responsive. If I end up flying, it will be my Gyrobee or a Dominator.

If I had 100K in a machine, I would get an airplane, for the reasons Gyro Ron said.
 
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