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Old 12-20-2013, 09:05 PM
videobobk's Avatar
videobobk videobobk is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Near Scipio, in Southern Indiana
Posts: 1,779

I have something over 300 hours in my 9A, and time in about 30 other makes/models. As for as economy, it came in second. A sailplane beats it. Speed? Faster than the retracts I have flown. Handling is just right, don't know how else to put it. I have about 30 hours in an RV-12, and it is about the same, but the 9A rides a little better. The 12 is a little cheaper to fly, also, so maybe the 9A is third on hourly costs, but still second on XC.

Get a ride in one and you will be hooked. I'd bet on it.

Bob Kelly, Scipio, Indiana
Tech Counselor
Founder, Eagle's Nest Projects
President, AviationNation, Inc
RV-9A N908BL, Flying
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Old 12-20-2013, 09:52 PM
kholsinger kholsinger is offline
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 18
Default 9A

I seriously considered the Da40, but the 9A is exceptional. I have about 500 terrific hours in mine. Hard to beat!
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Old 12-21-2013, 12:18 PM
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GeneL GeneL is offline
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Daytona Beach, Florida
Posts: 121
Default Transition

Tom, My first plane, with a grand total of 65 hours in my logbook was a Tiger. Great plane, fast, and great handling, 200 hours later time for an RV. This was the easiest transition I can imagine. The constant speed prop was the biggest change, and that was mastered in no time. I did get a 7A, but I have time in 9As and the 9A is slightly closer to the Tiger. If you have Tiger time your only question will be "why didn't I do this sooner!!". Enjoy the grin.
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Old 12-21-2013, 05:25 PM
qtrmiledan qtrmiledan is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Baton Rouge,La.
Posts: 152
Default Transition

I've about 690 hrs- most in cherokee180, but about 40 in a tiger, now I have 32 hrs in my RV9A. Chartis insurance considered 40hrs in the tiger time-in-type and required no transition training. After flying the 9A for 32 hrs so far I now know why- It's very docile.
Danny B
RV9A #91137 Flying!!
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Old 12-22-2013, 12:33 PM
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RONSIM RONSIM is offline
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Largo, FL
Posts: 1,049
Default I have owned a Tiger

and loved the airplane ----at the time (1978) it was about as close to a sports car (compared to Cessna/Cherokee) as you could get. I have flown a DA-40 a bit, when I lived in Albuquerque -- and the DA-20. I am flying a -6A now.

In my opinion, the -9A is a "funner" airplane than the Diamond or the Tiger -- no comparison in handling and overall performance. However, you are giving up a couple of seats and some baggage room. Every airplane is a compromise, of some kind.
RV-10 Co-built, maintained, flown (sold)
RV-8A Maintained and flown (Sold)
RV-6A Bought and Flying (N177RV), upgrades $$$
IO360, 180HP/CS, AFS 5600T, D10A, G650, G430, G327, ADS-B, VIZ385 AP
Very Happy Contributor
Based at KCLW (Clearwater, FL)
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Old 12-22-2013, 12:55 PM
Rupester Rupester is offline
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Mahomet, Illinois
Posts: 2,195
Default 9A ... The alternative love-of-my-life?

I'm incredibly pleased with all the performance characteristics of the 9A. At the end of the first year of flying the all-in cost (fuel, oil, maintenance, parts, hangar, insurance, etc) was $84/hr. (no engine rebuild contribution) Since much of the the total are fixed costs, more flying would bring the hourly rate down even more. The average fuel consumption over 100 hrs was 6.1gph; that reflects more than normal pattern work and the fact I run LOP in the low 6's on all x-countries. It flies and handles better than anything I've ever flown - cold weather climb rates are >2000fpm at 90kias. My normal cruise is 145ktas at 8000 PA and 6.1 to 6.3gph. Easiest plane to land I've ever flown. The ONLY thing I would wish for would be a little more room ... On long trips it gets pretty tight with two people. But all in all, I couldn't be more pleased.
Terry Ruprecht
RV-9A Tip-up; IO-320 D2A
S. James cowl/plenum
(Dues paid thru Nov '18)
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Old 12-22-2013, 04:45 PM
Mark C. Mark C. is offline
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Schaumburg
Posts: 119

Terry, great numbers, on the IO320 what RPM and what prop are you using?? The lunch offer is still on for Schaumburg Pilot Pete's... still have not been up in a 9... Presently working on my panel. In the plans to have a start on my 9A summer of 2014.. Mark C. 119RV
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Old 12-22-2013, 06:31 PM
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FORANE FORANE is offline
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: East TN
Posts: 580

Like Terry stated the 9A is also close to if not the easiest plane I have ever landed. We have a 150hp O-320 9A and our numbers are similar to Terrys at about 145 kts at around 6.5 gph. We have fixed pitch Sensenich metal prop. We climb at over 1000 fpm with 2 onboard. My Lancair also has an O-320 and will cruise at 180 kts on the same fuel burn but is a whole lot harder to land and requires a whole lot more runway.
For the OP, you need a ride. Plenty of good folks likely to offer if you ask. The 9A is a great plane for a new pilot.
Lancair 235/340
RV-9A (2013 - 2016)

Last edited by FORANE : 12-22-2013 at 06:34 PM.
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Old 12-23-2013, 12:19 AM
Canadian_JOY Canadian_JOY is offline
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,372

OK, so no Tiger time but a handful or two of hours in a 150hp Cheetah, and an hour or three bombing around in a friend's 160hp 9A... My comments below apply to the Cheetah, but in almost all matters the Cheetah and Tiger are pretty much the same, save for the Tiger's better speed and better climb rate, thanks to its 180hp engine.

Some impressions of both:
- Grumman is far easier to get into and out of, hands down - the sliding seats and larger canopy opening are chiefly responsible for this difference
- Grumman has far more cargo space and more useful load to carry it
- Grumman gives you 4 seats for those times when you want to take along more than one friend
- Grumman allows you to feel like the cockpit is wider by having your right-seater slide the seat all the way aft, giving you both some extra shoulder room
- Grumman has a more robust nose gear setup
- Grumman is constrained in equipment you can install, and the price of that equipment
- Grumman is slower on equal power and quite a bit slower in the climb
- Grumman has lots of elevator authority which has resulted in PIO landing incidents, often negating the effect of the more robust nose gear
- 9A has a stick, Grumman has a yoke - personal preference rules here
- 9A has similar feel in roll axis but feels lighter in pitch once you get very far out of trim; you wont get a sore arm flaring the 9A
- 9A gives you a greater choice of installed equipment, ranging from avionics to powerplants to props
- 9A is stable enough to be an IFR platform, as is the Grumman
- for IFR work, the fuel range of the 9A may leave you wishing for more if flying in an area where alternates are a fair distance away
- unless you have the "tip up slider" mod, accessing the baggage area (equivalent of Grumman rear seat area) of the 9A is considerably more difficult than the Grumman, particularly for larger objects
- Grumman runs bigger tires - a double-edged sword; more flotation on soft ground, more drag in the air
- Grumman offers a much wider wing-walk surface for those of us with big, clumsy feet
- 9A doesn't have any rudder return springs to break
- diving under the instrument panel appears to be an equally painful experience in both aircraft
- 9A offers better visibility in all directions
- conversely, the Grumman doesn't require a sunshade in the canopy to keep from toasting ones noggin
- 9A's seem to command a fair price premium over Tigers... one would expect this, given most AA5B's are 35 or more years of age and one can hardly stand up after seeing the price point on the AG5B's
- 9A is physically smaller and easier to ground-handle
- paint stripping on the 9A doesn't require the brand-specific knowledge required of Grumman painters
- the Grumman has, through many years of service, proven itself to be a very robust aircraft; unfortunately those many years of service mean there are some very tired ones out in the market
- the Grumman engine cowl is an absolute dream for routine maintenance, allowing access to all spark plugs etc
- for non-routine maintenance like changing an alternator, having to remove the prop and nosebowl is a real pain in the keester
- the Grumman offers a lot more room behind the engine to access accessories and change oil filters
- the 9A doesn't have a silly "mail slot" aft baggage door, but then again, it also doesn't have an aft baggage compartment or a fold-flat rear seat
- 9A takeoff performance is, by comparison... (well, there really is no comparison)

If I were looking at buying into the airplane market right now, I'd be looking hard at experimentals, if only for the freedom of choice of installed equipment and reduced maintenance/ownership costs they offer. These freedoms must be balanced by a willingness to take on more responsibility for maintenance and systems engineering.

OK, that's about all I can think of for the moment.
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Old 12-31-2013, 07:06 PM
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Sunriver Ken Sunriver Ken is offline
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Sunriver, Oregon/Surprise, Arizona
Posts: 128
Default The Tiger is Good but....

I've got 350-400 hours in the Tiger and love it (my third favorite plane). I love the solid feel of the 5B and the fast aileron response. I only flew with two people and a limited amount of baggage in the plane even on cross-countrys.

Except for the Tiger's rear seat and the fold down feature of the seat I believe the 9 I now own is an all-around easier to fly, more forgiving and a more adaptable airplane. Part of the reason for this is my 9 has an 0-360 and constant speed prop. While this hurts the useful load (if you stay within Van's recommended max gross) these two features make the airplane a dream to fly no matter what the temperature or density altitude. Why someone would put anything less than the 180HP in the 9 is not understandable to me. I understand there are reasons but pull the power back, save fuel and still cruise at a nice TAS.

The only negative I have with the 9 is the low wing loading. It does not handle in-flight turbulence as well as the Tiger and Cheetah did. They are about equal for instrument work.

Hope this helps,
Fly safe,
Ken Day
Independence, OR
RV-9A O-360/CS - SOLD
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