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Pilot Reports

“Speed increases as a cube of power, so you’re going to have to add a lot of ponies (read dollars) to see the kinds of gains reducing drag will give you.”

proper positions; all of these elements can make a huge impact on drag. If you’re flying hands/feet free and the ball isn’t centered or the aircraft has a tendency to roll, these are indications of possible speedrobbing rigging issues. Proper sealing of gear doors is also very important. Some Bonanzas have what we call the “Bonanza smile,” where the nose gear doors open

slightly while in flight, caused by out of rig and/or older doors that bend open. There are companies that make a thicker aluminum door that can correct the problem and save big on drag.” I asked Curt about the value of adding horsepower vs. reducing drag, “Speed increases as a cube of power, so you’re going to have to

add a lot of ponies (read dollars) to see the kinds of gains reducing drag will give you.” Corky chimes in to illustrate the point, “The F8F Bearcat and P-51 my dad and I flew are around the same dimensions as the Bonanza, but could achieve over 410 mph, twice that of the Bonanza going full out. However, even though they weighed twice as much (empty), it takes about seven times the horseM AY / J U N E 2 0 1 0

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PilotMag-May/June 2010  

Aviation magazine

PilotMag-May/June 2010  

Aviation magazine

Profile for pilotmag
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