Aviat Husky - Is This Taildragger Really Worth Buying?
If you are looking for a taildragger airplane you have probably realized that there are a lot of very old models out there and not a lot of newer ones made with new technology. That is the great thing about the Husky Aviat... It is made with modern technology and it is an awesome airplane that you should really consider having a look at.
IMPORTANT - Make sure you realize that the Husky has evolved over the years and there are a few different versions of this aircraft. A few of the Husky's have 180 horsepower engines, there is also the Husky A-1C-200 which has 200 horsepower and then there is the Husky A-1B-160 Pup which has 160 horsepower. Just make sure you pay attention to the model your looking at as your going to want to get the one with the right horsepower and modifications.
2 Compelling Reasons Why EVERY PILOT Should Be Looking At The
Reason #1 - They've Modernized The Taildragger (Here's why this is important)
The great thing about this airplane is that it has really taken off where other taildraggers that were build in the previous decades have left off. Sure you can get a really good taildragger from the 1970's or older, but if you want something that is from the 2000's your only going to have a few different options to choose from.
Due to the popularity of the LSA (Light Sport Aircraft) market, many manufactures have turned their production to this market. And that has left a big gap in the market that only a few manufactures like Aviat Aircraft have been filling.
There is still a good demand for people looking for high powered, modernized taildraggers and Aviat Aircraft has done a great job with the Husky.
A LOT Of Pilots Don't Think About This One Thing
Sure you can get an old taildragger that was made decades ago, but you are going to have to deal with the issues that come along with having an airplane that is really old.
One of which is getting it fixed a lot. The bottom line is that if your flying a 40 year old airplane, it is going to need a lot of love! And the downside of getting it fixed more often is the fact that it will be sitting in the shop more. And when your taildragger is in the shop - your not flying it.
And you know how it works --- it's going to be in the shop on the nicest flying days of the year and it will be in flying shape when the weather is so cold you can't fly! (-: So that is one of the nice things about getting a taildragger that is new. You should not have to worry about excessive upkeep and overwhelming repairs.
Reason #2 - You Should Like The Performance
Most people don't buy a taildragger 2 seater because they want to fly at 25,000 feet in IFR conditions at 250 knots of cruise speed. But if you a taildragger that has a lot of power - the Aviat Husky has it... As mentioned, they have manufactured planes with the 160 hp engine, 180 hp engine & the 200 hp engine.
That is a pretty good size engine (all of them) for a plane that small... The great thing about the Aviat Husky is the fact that it has been designed with modern engineering and has been able to take advantage of a lot of the advancements in design over the last number of years.
You Like Speed? Check This Out
As far as speed goes, that all depends on your situation. But the Husky A-1C has a cruise speed of about 140 mph at 75% power.(1) That is very good for a small airplane - so if you are looking for a balance of massive power and great speed, this might just be the airplane for you!
Your not going to break any sound barrier records with this kind of speed, but when you think about the fact that your flying a taildragger - that is a pretty good cruise speed. But what is more important then the speed is the power.
It is one thing to go fast, but if you are using all your power to do it - then the airplane is going to seem underpowered. But with the size of engines that these airplanes have, not only do you have a good speed to work with, you have some really good power as well.
So if you want to cut your fuel burn you can easily cut the power back to 65% and you still should have a good cruise speed as well as lots of torque behind you.
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References: #1 - Sourced 01/19/2012 http://www.aviataircraft.com/hspecs.html
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