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C-172 and Archer

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Got Beer?
Jan 7, 2002
I work the desk for a flight school and we use mostly brand new C-172s for training. Though you wouldn't know it because they are always down for maintenence( broken spinners, bad nose wheeel shimmy, inop radios and xponder). I have not flown the new archers yet, and just wanted to know if piper makes a good aiplane. So far, i am not at all impressed with Cessna.

Piper and Cessna have about the same attitude toward quality and reliablity. Piper is having a lot of trouble with their Meridians right now. Piper also doen't make anywhere near as many piston singles as cessna does, so you probably won't see new pipers on rental lines very often. If we could just get honda to make airplanes.....

I flew a new Saratoga TC for a guy and have instructed in most of Piper's new stuff. I can't believe a company would sell someone a $400G airlplane knowing that it's going to live at the shop for the first year or so. I won't even go into details but many components of that airplane were replaced in the first year/300 hours of ownership. Riduculous!!!!!! Cessna and Mooney aren't any better. As a matter of fact, Mooney is in litigation as we speak against a man who is demanding his money back for a TLC (?) he bougth. He claimed breach of contract on Mooney's part stating they did not deliver a working aircraft as it spent close to 4 mo.'s of the first year in the shop. It's funny to me how readily accepted this is in this industry. If I built a $400G house with a leaky roof, a "deferred" toilet, an oven that wouldn't go above 200', and peeling paint I'd have my way with the builder in court the next week.

I have a fair amount of time in used Pipers and loved them. I took care of a 1980 Archer II for a guy that was a solid as a rock. The occasional squawk, but nothing like the new models. We rented the @#$@ out of it too.
Cessna v. Piper

You're right about the nosewheel shimmy in Cessna. Other than that, six of one, half a dozen of another, in my .02 opinion.

One possible advantage to Piper, though, might be that from Archers and Warriors on up, the general configuration is essentially the same. So, advanced students have an easier time transitioning from Warriors and Archers to Arrows and Seminoles, etc. On the other hand, 172s, being short-coupled, are more of a challange to land in crosswinds. I always thought Piper was much easier to land in a crosswind.

PS-I just read Sydeseet's post about Mooney. Mooneys provide a "real" stall break and you have to fly them coordinated or stalls are exciting. But, if you're going to go that route, you may as well go Beech. We used A36s at Mesa and they were great trainers, though co$tly.
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