Transitioning to DA42 questions

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CFIDave
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby CFIDave » Mon Jul 31, 2017 2:05 pm

A couple more tips on what to expect when coming from a DA40:

1. Single-engine work will provide quite a workout of your thigh muscles to hold the aircraft straight to counter yaw. Yes, you can add rudder trim, but in practice where you're only doing this for a few minutes, rudder trim is generally not used. There's also not widespread agreement on what power setting to use to simulate a feathered engine; if you have an instructor/examiner that lets you get away with using as much as 20% power, it's a whole lot easier on your legs than if they use less.

2. Be careful on practicing short-field landings. The DA42 main gear tires are the same as those of the DA40, and with nearly twice the aircraft weight, it's VERY easy to lock up the brakes and flat-spot (or even blow -- don't ask how I know!) the tires. Don't apply as much pedal pressure as you did on a DA40 to try and make the next taxiway turn-off; instead, apply brakes smoothly and gently. The short-field landing is really a precision spot-landing and landing speed control exercise.

3. Steep turns (especially to Commercial 50 degrees of bank) are harder to master in a DA42. You're supposed to look out the window, maintaining the horizon's intersection with the glare shield to hold bank and altitude. However if your DA42 is equipped with SVT, a way to "cheat" is to hold the (green circle) flight path marker on the horizon line to hold altitude.

4. The nice thing is that the DA42 trailing-link landing gear generally "absorbs" rather than "bounces," making you a hero to your passengers on every landing. :)
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby carym » Mon Jul 31, 2017 2:31 pm

I agree with everything that Dave said, and I note that he has said it much more elegantly than I could.
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby BlueYonder » Sat Sep 23, 2017 4:13 am

Great discussion. We took our DA40 on our first long XC last month (Seattle to Oklahoma and back) -- and by the return trip, my husband was already talking about how maybe we need a DA42, like Colin's.

I did not expect this to be such an easy sell. But, OK, big guy -- you wanna buy your girl a twin, she's not going to say no.

He's hoping to get a lot more payload. (With the two of us and 80% full tanks, we're at just about 100lbs of baggage. Another 200lbs would change our experience completely.) We'd also like a little more speed. But most of all -- he's craving more cockpit room. At 250# and a 50" chest, he's finding it pretty darn tight on the right side of the plane.

So here's the question: Are the front seats in the 42 really any roomier? Our 40 is a 2007, made before they re-shaped the canopy, so we're dealing with very small spaces indeed now. But I'm given to understand that the 42's overall cabin width is about the same as the 40.

We took a look at Colin's, and are now wished we'd actually sat in the seats to get a feel for this. Any guidance welcome.
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby Guest » Sun Sep 24, 2017 6:01 am

The cabin width is indeed the same. However, as of the introduction of the -NG, the DA42 have a 'tall canopy'. Plus, you may find one with adjustable back rests, comes standard here in Europe with the 'Platinum edition'. These two things make life definitively more comfortable..

I have the platinum, but don't have the -NG but managed to negotiate this tall canopy in in 2007 when I bought her. They may even sell that canopy separately to you. For a few thousand that would in my opinion be worth it, room wise, and getting a new and pristine windshield!
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby Colin » Sun Sep 24, 2017 6:21 pm

You can add the TallBoy canopy to your DA40 for $5k + labor. I did it. I *think* I got it back out at the sale, since if I hadn't replaced the canopy I am pretty sure it would have been dinged for more than that.

I'll be back in the PNW in mid-October and you can come sit in the plane, or it will come to you. The reclining seats are actually what made the biggest difference for comfort on long flights. Huge difference.
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby carym » Sun Sep 24, 2017 7:54 pm

I have said this before. I did not have reclining seats in my DA42, but the angle of the seats made them the most comfortable seats in any plane I have flown. On long flights in either my C310 or in my SR22, the seats were not very comfortable causing either back or neck pains. However, flying the DA42 all over the country I never felt uncomfortable. I believe the angle of the seats in the DA42 are different than in the DA40. Don't rule out a DA42 without reclining seats until you have sat (and flown) in the plane.
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby ncrcurious » Sun Oct 22, 2017 9:00 pm

Hi Dave;
Coming from Seminole, I usually pitch slightly nose up +/ 5 degree during the flare. However, I bounced using the same technique at 80-ish KIAS (short final) on that DA42.
Any tip?
How much pitch do I flare?
Thank you so much.

CFIDave wrote:................
4. The nice thing is that the DA42 trailing-link landing gear generally "absorbs" rather than "bounces," making you a hero to your passengers on every landing. :)
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby CFIDave » Sun Oct 22, 2017 10:36 pm

ncrcurious wrote:Hi Dave;
Coming from Seminole, I usually pitch slightly nose up +/ 5 degree during the flare. However, I bounced using the same technique at 80-ish KIAS (short final) on that DA42.
Any tip?
How much pitch do I flare?
Thank you so much.

You land a DA42 about the same as a Seminole (or DA40), in that you still flare. (It's not like a Cirrus that's landed with a nearly flat attitude.) But leaving some power in helps ensure a smooth arrival.
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby Tommy » Mon Oct 23, 2017 8:39 am

You will never find an easier landing airplane than a DA 42.
If you can't land a 42 you shouldn't be flying airplanes.
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Re: Transitioning to DA42 questions

Postby ncrcurious » Mon Oct 23, 2017 2:15 pm

Thank you, Dave.
I noticed that DA42 floated longer before touch down when using the same technique as a Seminole although no bounce this time around.
Is this normal? I am so afraid of tail strike events.

CFIDave wrote:You land a DA42 about the same as a Seminole (or DA40), in that you still flare. (It's not like a Cirrus that's landed with a nearly flat attitude.) But leaving some power in helps ensure a smooth arrival.

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