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The Socata TB-family wikipage lists the TB-9 and TB-10 as having "spatted undercarriage". What does that mean? From the pictures it appears to be a normal tricycle-gear-setup so I assume it's not referring to the layout of the landing gear.

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

If i'm not mistaken, a spat is a fairing for the gear to make it more aerodynamic.


An aircraft wheel fairing, commonly called a wheel pant or spat or, by some manufacturers, a speed fairing. Wikipedia

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Thanks! I visited that page, but somehow I missed that. I always thought they were simply called "wheel fairings", you learn something new everyday :) – falstro Mar 9 '14 at 17:07
@roe it doesn't seem like a very common term, more informal and less used in literature. might be limited to the united states as well. – Thunderstrike Mar 9 '14 at 17:20

"Spatted undercarriage" refers to streamlined fairings on fixed landing gear. They're also known as "wheel pants", although when it comes to comparisons with clothing "spats" is certainly more accurate, as they only cover the top of the wheel, not the entire gear leg.

The term is semi-common in the US, but I've mostly heard (and used) "wheel pants" when talking about landing gear fairings.

Spats / wheel pants / fairings on an AA-1's landing gear:

spats on an airplane

Spats on shoes on Charles Sumner:

spats on sumner

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