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07 Dec 2019, 03:35 [ UTC - 5; DST ]


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 29 Oct 2019, 14:47 
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Nice pic!

I am 6/2 and my head does touch (not hunched over, but I do have to slouch). I removed my second row seat behind the pilot so lots of leg room for me to slouch.

I do think the TOGA and A36 pic though should show your knees in your mouth as both planes the seats are very low to the floor...... :peace:

I would agree that the individuals in the picture have strange proportions. I think that this is generally representative in a relative sense. I thought about buying one so I rented a Saratoga for a while. Never actually got in the back seat to find out for myself.

Does kinda fly like a school bus. I liked it for a kid and stuff mover. The kids loved it. They were sold by the blinds on the windows. Simple things.


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 29 Oct 2019, 15:12 
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I pay $2,500 for 125k hull value and 100,000 per pax. The 210 gear does require maintaining. There special tools made specifically for it and it is what my mechanic and I spend the most time on each annual. If maintained well it works fine....


I pay about $1000 less than that for the same insurance on an A36. This is pretty close to what I paid the first year of ownership (4 years ago). Initially insured as an IFR rated pilot with 500 hours and about 50 hours retract. When I had 100 hours in type, my insurance cost dropped, but it went back up over the last 3 years. I think have a pretty good deal on my insurance, but sounds like it would definitely be higher if I changed to a C210.


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 29 Oct 2019, 15:39 
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As nice as the V-tail is to fly, I don't think the A36 is particularly special in the handling aspect. It's not bad, but it ain't a sports car by any means.

The PA32, kind of depends on which one you're talking about, but they handle about like a station wagon or a Dodge mommy-van.

I think the cabin in the PA32 is a bit more comfortable. I owned a Seneca II for decade (PA34) same fuselage but twin engine form. Definitely more shoulder room and more spacious feeling cabin. Lots of load flexibility in the PA34 with nose and rear baggage. I haven't owned a PA32, but the forward baggage locker does offer some increased loading capability.


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 29 Oct 2019, 18:23 
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Username Protected wrote:
As nice as the V-tail is to fly, I don't think the A36 is particularly special in the handling aspect. It's not bad, but it ain't a sports car by any means.


Hmm. But nobody's calling the A36 a sports car or comparing it to a V-tail. :scratch:

Anyone who has flown both knows they're not the same. But fly them both and comparing them to "like" Porsches or BMWs is an apt comparison.

Go from 3 or 5 series sedan to a 3 or 5 series X and you know you're driving a car from the same company with the same design and performance standards and often built on the same core platform.

One's just a little lighter, sharper, lighter on the controls, easier to flick around vs the other that trades some of that sharpness for a bit more space and loading utility. But there's more in common than different. Just like a V-Tail and an A36.

In both cases, Beech and, let's say BMW, you are a pilot/driver with pilot/driver priorities. And you expect world class handling and quality. And that handling and quality tightly bonds you to the plane like no other. To wit, Beechtalk vs any other manufacturer or aviation forum.

No, the A36's handling is not "special" like a V-tails is. But this much is true. No sane and sober pilot has ever exited an A36 and say "meh, flies just like my 210, and similar build quality too".

Show me such a person and I think we can all picture that person arriving at the airport in a Chevy Suburban. Six weeks of fast food wrappers and soda stains scattered across the interior. :duck:

Now how many picture such a person arriving in an M4 or Macan S? A tad harder to fathom, aye?

Just different people with different priorities. Generally speaking.

BWTHDIK.

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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 29 Oct 2019, 23:08 
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Username Protected wrote:
As nice as the V-tail is to fly, I don't think the A36 is particularly special in the handling aspect. It's not bad, but it ain't a sports car by any means.


Hmm. But nobody's calling the A36 a sports car or comparing it to a V-tail. :scratch:

Anyone who has flown both knows they're not the same. But fly them both and comparing them to "like" Porsches or BMWs is an apt comparison.

Go from 3 or 5 series sedan to a 3 or 5 series X and you know you're driving a car from the same company with the same design and performance standards and often built on the same core platform.

One's just a little lighter, sharper, lighter on the controls, easier to flick around vs the other that trades some of that sharpness for a bit more space and loading utility. But there's more in common than different. Just like a V-Tail and an A36.

In both cases, Beech and, let's say BMW, you are a pilot/driver with pilot/driver priorities. And you expect world class handling and quality. And that handling and quality tightly bonds you to the plane like no other. To wit, Beechtalk vs any other manufacturer or aviation forum.

No, the A36's handling is not "special" like a V-tails is. But this much is true. No sane and sober pilot has ever exited an A36 and say "meh, flies just like my 210, and similar build quality too".

Show me such a person and I think we can all picture that person arriving at the airport in a Chevy Suburban. Six weeks of fast food wrappers and soda stains scattered across the interior. :duck:

Now how many picture such a person arriving in an M4 or Macan S? A tad harder to fathom, aye?

Just different people with different priorities. Generally speaking.

BWTHDIK.


I think you nailed it Russ. I haven't flown a Lance or a Saratoga, but I have Cherokee 6 time. I'm guessing that all PA32s handle in a somewhat similar way. The Cherokee 6 doesn't fly like a truck. It flys like an old school bus. Super stable. Put it in a bank and it just sits there. The one I was flying had a 1500+ lb useful load. Cruised at 137 knots and did what it did just fine, but it's the farthest thing I know from a sporty airplane.

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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 30 Oct 2019, 10:40 
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I'm partial to the A36 for speed, looks, and build quality, but the Saratoga has better useful load, is roomier, and for similar price can get newer plane or better equipped avionics wise. Having no experience in either, I'm trying to understand what people mean by "better handling" on the Beech vs Piper? By contrast, I've read the Saratoga "feels" more stable in IFR weather. Can anyone with experience in both types help me understand this handling issue, and what I would be giving up in upgrading to the Piper? Thank you!


Marty, analogies to cars and trucks are often used to compare the handling of two planes you're considering. Porsche Cayenne (or BMW X5) vs. Chevy Surburban are often used to compare the two. "Drivers" gravitate to the former. "Non drivers" to the latter. The former have that feeling of tightness with throttle, steering and braking inputs being precise, responsive, communicative, connected. The steering feel is slightly "heavier" (i.e., not overly boosted) with no slop in the controls.

The Chevy is none of this. It's big and has a ton of space. Owners care about this and being non drivers don't perceive or even understand just how sloppy and over boosted the steering is ("road feel", what is that? Why would you feel the road?). Everything feels cheap, because it is. It'll be a rattle trap with 50K miles, while the Porsche or BMW will still be tight many years and miles later. The build quality between the two are just night and day.

Haul a bunch of kids spilling juice all over my Cayenne interior? Uh, no. To the Chevy owner, this is called breaking the truck in! Just two different sets of priorities and values. Neither better than the other. Just different.

This analogy fits the A36 vs. Toga. As others have said, fly the two. Just like driving a Cayenne and then stepping into a Suburban, you'll know instantly how they differ and which one is for you.

Regarding the IFR stability, this is not a subjective "feel" thing. Here the two planes are very different re longitudinal stability inherent in their designs. The A36 will not remain straight on its own as easily as the Toga. It will roll more easily and once rolling will keep on rolling unless and until the pilot reacts. The Toga will remain S&L more naturally. Less pilot input needed. The A36 requires the pilot to be proficient hand flying in IMC. The Toga does not demand the same level of proficiency. It's just easier to hand fly in IMC.

While we can say that A36 pilots can use training and technique to fly an A36 just as comfortably as a pilot flying a Toga, and this is absolutely true, the fact of the matter is many IFR pilots don't maintain this level of proficiency because they don't hand fly in IMC often enough. In that sense, the Toga (and its Piper variants, as well as the Cessna's, which share the Toga's longitudinal stability) are often thought of as "safer" IFR platforms for pilots whose IMC hours will fall on the lower end of the time envelope.

Hope this helps.


Russ, thank you for this explanation - particularly flying in IMC - this is what I was trying to understand. I can certainly relate to the car comparison as well. I am a Porshe/BMW driver, but had a GMC Denali in the past as well. All nice vehicles for their mission, just some more fun to drive than the other. I do like the handling of the baby Beech I own, and assume that will translate to an extent into the larger A36.

Now I just need to investigate the W&B issues a bit deeper. The most I would likely fly with is my family of 5 and having all of us together will not be a common occurrence (one son is in college and the next is heading that way next year). Still it would be nice to know I could take the whole family on those occasions when we are all together.

Appreciate everyone's helpful thoughts and comments!

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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 30 Oct 2019, 15:53 
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I knew as soon as I said that the A36 wasn't a high benchmark of handling it would veer off into a defense of the A36. It flies like a 6-seater. I wouldn't call it sporty or spritely, it's OK and it does what it is supposed to.

The PA32 line has had a lot of variations in wing and control authority, as well as fixed and retractable gear, and it depends on which one you're talking about in particular.

The earlier Cherokee Six (fixed gear) is a school bus. The later Saratoga RG more like a minivan.

The PA34 line also had a tremendous shift between the PA34-200 (aka, Seneca or Seneca I, non-turbo) and the PA34-200T (Seneca II, and later). The II introduced a LOT of control surface changes. The earlier Seneca (original non-turbo model) is among the worst handling aircraft I've ever flown. The Seneca II and later models are far improved.


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 30 Oct 2019, 17:03 
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The PA32 is very predictable and swallows people and cargo well. When I hear the chatter about how well the Beech flies I sorta chuckle. 90% of the time the autopilot is on in my plane and no bags or people were left behind. If you want sporty and spritely handling, you probably should not be looking at any six place airframe. If you want to get there in comfort, hard to beat a PA32 without the price point going through the stratosphere.

But if you gotta have that Beech swagger-stagger walking off the ramp, rock on witcha bad self. :cheers:


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 30 Oct 2019, 18:15 
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I own a 1980 NA fixed gear Toga. Beyond TBO IO540. Run LOP 14.5gph @145 knots. No speed demon but extremely stable. UL 1400 lbs. Extremely roomy. Have carried 5-6 (1-2 being kids) many times and it's never been cramped. I own / operate this Toga for no more than 1.5x the cost of my PA-28 Cherokee. Most flight are in the 300-400 NM range with the once a year 600+. I can fly 3 hours to the beach and leave with 6 hours of fuel (much cheaper at home) and be loaded with luggage, wife and 3 kids (8, 11, 14).

Toga and A36 are both fantastic planes. The Toga fits my mission and desired budget perfectly.


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 30 Oct 2019, 19:46 
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The most significant difference between the two for me was the sight picture. The nose of the Toga is very long and really gets in the way, as opposed to the Bo which has a really nose-low attitude in addition to its shorter cowling. For me this makes the Bo a way more enjoyable aircraft to fly. I don't care so much about the handling, although the Bo is obviously tighter in that regard.

That said, the cabin room and storage behind the engine in the Toga are huge advantages. If you're carrying people and luggage, this should be a major consideration.


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 31 Oct 2019, 13:17 
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Username Protected wrote:
...but, Jim, your's "holds" less than a Toga. That forward baggage compartment in the Toga is the cat's meow.

Rick,

I’ve carried 5 adults plus overnight luggage for 5 (and full fuel) with no problems.

Our ‘76 has the newer A36 style aft baggage bay (available from BDS a long time ago as an STC) as well as a surprisingly large luggage area between the cockpit and the aft facing middle seats (I can easily get a set of golf clubs in there along with a half dozen or so soft sided nylon travel bags).

It’s unclear (to me) what folks are hauling that makes this level of room insufficient. We’ve had this aircraft for 29+ years. We’ve hauled 4 men plus golf clubs plus weekend trip luggage, we’ve hauled 3 adults + 2 children plus snow skis, boots, poles and luggage, etc.

:shrug:

Personally I’d rather have the speed, build quality and efficiency (I can run LOP all day and go surprisingly fast on not that much fuel) of the Bonanza.

Obviously others have different needs and that’s fine. But my TAT TN 550 A36, with a 1,638 lb. useful load, *is* the cat’s meow as far as I’m concerned.

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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 04 Nov 2019, 22:41 
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I fly a 2006 Saratoga II TC. Cruises at 170kts true at 10,000ft and 180kts true at 16,000ft at 29in. & 2300rpm. Burns about 18 gallons at that setting.
Useful load not great at 1040. The turbo is great, especially out here in The West.
Hope this helps.


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 09 Nov 2019, 11:43 
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Just going to throw this bomb into the mix. If you have your instrument rating, and want to have a more capable aircraft - look at an early Malibu. My journey went from SR22 to Saratoga to A36 to Malibu to Meridian to Mustang. The Malibu is a great airplane if you're looking for a 6 pax piston single. And you get faster, farther, pressurization, known ice, airstair, etc etc etc...

The price delta between a nice A36 and a nice PA46 isn't that great. And if you can manage the financials, it's a lot more airplane if you're doing cross country (300nm or more) trips...

Let the haters ignite, but just my .02...


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 09 Nov 2019, 15:29 
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Username Protected wrote:
Just going to throw this bomb into the mix. If you have your instrument rating, and want to have a more capable aircraft - look at an early Malibu. My journey went from SR22 to Saratoga to A36 to Malibu to Meridian to Mustang. The Malibu is a great airplane if you're looking for a 6 pax piston single. And you get faster, farther, pressurization, known ice, airstair, etc etc etc...

The price delta between a nice A36 and a nice PA46 isn't that great. And if you can manage the financials, it's a lot more airplane if you're doing cross country (300nm or more) trips...

Let the haters ignite, but just my .02...



The 'bu is great on paper and the airstair gets lots of wife-approval-factor. But I found it just didn't fit me, my knees literally jammed into the bottom of the panel the whole time and it isn't easy to get in and out of the cockpit. If ya fit it, great stuff. Just couldn't imagine living in it myself, much as I wished I could.


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 Post subject: Re: Saratoga vs A36 - Handling Characteristics
PostPosted: 12 Nov 2019, 22:35 
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Aircraft: 1982 58P
My father has a Toga II TC and I’ve had a few bo’s. The biggest thing I hate about flying his Toga isn’t the cruise speed, his will do as well as a bo, but the gear and flap speeds are atrocious for a plane that capable. It drives me crazy to try and get down from turbo altitudes in that thing every time I fly it. I think the gear is 132kt and flaps are like 120. Just ridiculous. It is super comfortable, quiet, smooth and roomy but it likes to drink fuel and has a low useful load. Piper really should have bumped it to 3800 like Beech did the B36TC.


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