transition to a mooney

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Would a pilot with about 100hrs in a cessna 172 and working on IR who
wants to buy a mooney bravo have problems transitioning?
Say if he got 40hrs dual with a mooney instructor after buying the
plane? Insurance companies allow it with about 25hrs dual.
Dont plane to be in IMC after reading the killing zone and know that
is the most common problem for low time pilots but you never know.

-- Craig Jaces, January 10, 2008


The Mooney is famously tricky to land (porpoising). So if you spend 25 hours doing touch and goes, steep turns, and other stick-and-rudder stuff, you should be in great shape.

-- Philip Greenspun, January 10, 2008

Sorry, had to chime in on this one even though I'm probably a bit late. I love the Mooney planes, especially the new long bodies. What makes the Mooney difficult is not so much the aircraft's handling characteristics as much as it is the pilot's inability to recognize the need to go around from a botched landing attempt. When you attempt to salvage a bad landing in a Mooney, that's when the airplane bites back. The simple rule is, if you bounce it, go around. Don't try to fix it. That's a bad habit we get into with trainers because they are so incredibly forgiving and that kind of punishment is generally expected.

-- Jason Hackney, May 27, 2008

My friend and I bought a Mooney Bravo after only thirty hours of instruction in a Cherokee. We've been training in the Mooney since and have no regrets. Mr. Hackney is quite right, don't try to save a botched landing--go around. The amazing thing about this plane is the speed; we typically practice landings at several different airports in several different states. In a slow plane it would simply take too long.

-- Thom Reilly, May 30, 2008

I don't recommend touch in goes in any of the long bodied mooneys.

Do a complete landing each time, taxi back, and take off. A stop and go would work if you have a really long runway.

Once you have the hang of it, they are not hard to land, but runway loss of control is statistically more likely in a Mooney than in the competitors, even though the overall ratings are comparable. Safety is more about judgement than skill. If it's not right, go around.

Also, gear ups on the newer mooneys are almost exclusively due to go arounds, so double triple check your gear on those. (The reason is because on a straight-in the speed and descent will be hard to achieve without using the gear as a brake at some point). The gear up horn is really only needed for pattern landings.

-- Eric Warren, July 15, 2008

The more compelling reason not to do touch-and-goes in a Mooney is that the elevator trim settings for takeoff and landing are completely different, at least in my 1998 Encore. Takeoff trim is fairly neutral, but landing trim is extremely nose high, especially with full flaps. If you gun it at that trim setting you might end up with a departure stall before you can correct it because the trim motor is slow and even using the wheel takes some time.

-- Joe Zuffoletto, August 8, 2011