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Thread: Does it matter that Icon receives spin resistant certification?

  1. #1

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    Does it matter that Icon receives spin resistant certification?

    I'm sort of new to this whole aviation thing and am curious about spin resistant aircraft. I've thought about building, more likely buying, a canard because I like the safety aspect. But also saw the Icon at Oshkosh last year and was impressed. Then today I see this:

    http://www.wired.com/autopia/2012/02...l-of-approval/

    Does this actually mean that the airplane will be as safe as an airplane that has a canard?

    -JMW

  2. #2
    EAA Staff / Moderator Zack Baughman's Avatar
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    In a somewhat related question and just out of curiosity, for the folks with more knowledge about this than I, is an airplane that is spin resistant THAT much harder to get out of a spin IF a person somehow ends up in one?

    Zack

  3. #3

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    Zack, an excellent question because to use the analogy- water resistant does not mean waterproof. JMW, from my experience with Icon, they will personally take the time to answer questions and concerns if you ask them. When Icon made the decision last year to eliminate flaps for safety and ease of operation reasons, I took them to task with an email. They followed up with a phone call to me to fully explain their reasoning. I didn't and still don't agree with them but their professional and personal touch impressed me.

    Icon is marketing to a much wider marketplace that includes a whole new(for GA) consumer leisure product user segment-- those that don't fly but would like to if they could do it in an appealing jet-ski of the skys. Hence they're doing the unconventional to create the safest possible aircraft for the uninitiated. I applaud them for being the first to meet those FAA spin-resitant standards, quite the accomplishment.
    Last edited by Floatsflyer; 02-16-2012 at 02:20 PM.

  4. #4
    Flyfalcons's Avatar
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    I don't think it would be any safer than any airplane that is flown properly by its pilot.
    Ryan Winslow
    EAA 525529
    Stinson 108-1 "Big Red", RV-7 under construction

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zack Baughman View Post
    In a somewhat related question and just out of curiosity, for the folks with more knowledge about this than I, is an airplane that is spin resistant THAT much harder to get out of a spin IF a person somehow ends up in one?

    Zack
    It depends on the design. This is addressed in the ASTM Standard for spin testing.
    My interpretation of the standard is as follows:
    1)The company can choose to placard "no intentional spins". In that case, if the aircraft is not spin resistant, then the company must prove that "It must be impossible to obtain uncontrollable spins with any use of the controls".

    or

    2)The company can choose to placard "no intentional spins". And if the aircraft IS proven to be "spin resistant", then the company is not required to prove that the aircraft will recover from a spin. In this case a parachute may be provided (as stated in the article).

    So, to answer Zack's question:
    Yes, an aircraft that is stated as "spin resistant" could be harder (or impossible) to recover from a spin.
    This is something a buyer or operator would want to ask about, in my opinion.
    Last edited by Bill Berson; 02-16-2012 at 05:26 PM.

  6. #6

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    An aircraft that has less resistance to entering a spin can still end up a smoldering heap short of the runway just as easily as an aircraft that readily winds up. Good training, practice and awareness will possibly keep you alive better than an aircraft that is spin resistant. Get out their and practice your stalls and recovery procedures and you will never get into that situation were a spin may occur. Remember most of the stall/spin related fatalities occur at a unrecoverable altitude, like base to final.
    Ozzie

  7. #7

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    So here's a question:

    What is Icon doing differently that makes their wing "spin resistant"? And what does that actually mean?

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by FloridaJohn View Post
    So here's a question:

    What is Icon doing differently that makes their wing "spin resistant"? And what does that actually mean?
    This page from avweb has more information about the wing and a link to the part 23 regs that deal with the spin resistance requirements.
    http://www.avweb.com/avwebflash/news...ml?CMP=OTC-RSS

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by mbond View Post
    This page from avweb has more information about the wing and a link to the part 23 regs that deal with the spin resistance requirements. http://www.avweb.com/avwebflash/news...ml?CMP=OTC-RSS
    Thanks for the link, that was quite interesting reading. Icon has some really good information on their website, too, including a description on what makes a wing spin resistant. The basic idea is to design a wing that allows the outer edge of the wing to still create lift while the wing root is stalled. That's the reason for the cuff on the leading edge of the wing.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Flyfalcons View Post
    I don't think it would be any safer than any airplane that is flown properly by its pilot.
    Then we should get rid of those damn seat belts and shoulder harnesses, too. An airplane that is flown properly by its pilot doesn't need them.

    Ron Wanttaja

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