Lesson 6- Piper Intro

I flew a Piper today! My instructor, Bob, and I went up in Cherokee 6462R for an intro flight today, so that I could make a decision on whether to stick with Cessna’s or move to Piper’s. The main differences between a Piper and a Cessna are that Pipers have low wings, manual flaps, no ‘both’ option for the fuel, no toe brakes, it’s movements are a little sluggish, and it has no toe brakes. Yes, I know I said that twice. It was weird. The first time that I had the “oh shoot what did I just get myself in to” thought today was when we were finished with the run up, and I was supposed to go up to the hold short line. I put in a little more power than I should have, and then I was just sitting there pushing down my toes, wondering when the brakes would kick in. My instructor, on the other hand, jumped to the brake lever and stopped us before we crossed the line. Oops. So after that, I was a little more on my game, and managed to do the rest of the flight without messing up too bad. We went out over the Greenwood Lake area and did slow flight, steep turns and stalls, and then headed back to do one straight in touch-and-go, and then went around the pattern to do a full stop landing on 22 (We took off from 28). Bob and I both did the first landing, and then he let me go through the pattern and land, which was smoother than the 172. All in all, the one thing that I absolutely loved, and still can’t get over, is that feeling that I got in the Piper Every time I looked out the side window over the wing, because that actually made me feel like a pilot. Although, as my Instructor put it, I had to be an ‘octapus’ in order to be able to smoothly go about the cockpit in the Cherokee, that feeling definetly made the challenge worth it. What I like about the Cessna is that I don’t need more than 2 arms to control it, and it is a little more forgiving, but I don’t get that same feeling when I look out of the plane. In the end, I decided to stick with the Cessna because when I start renting aircraft after I get my license, Cessna’s will be easier to find, and also because in the Civil Air Patrol, which I am a part of, they have an entire fleet of Cessna’s, so hopefully, if I become a pilot for them, it will be easier, considering that my main training was in a Cessna. Since I still have a few years before I am eligible to get my license, my instructor said that if I wanted to, I could fly the Piper a few times after I become proficient in the Cessna, and that would help me stay current, as well as learn how to properly fly a different kind of aircraft. Thank you for reading, and my next flight should be at the end of July, so ¬†watch out for more blogs!