I've been trying to get a spin endorsement for my CFI, but I've been having a problem trying to find an airplane that I can do it in.

I'm 280 built like a linebacker. I'm not that "fat" just heavy. Losing weight for me isn't really a realistic option since I'm on a time crunch.

The closest thing I have found is an Xtreme Decathlon Citabria, but the CFI I go up with needs to weight 110lbs or less, and I'll probably have to stop for fuel in the middle of the flight.

I was told maybe a 172P model might work since it's utility class is 2000lbs, but I've not found one anywhere locally to verify this and see if they would be willing to let me spin the aircraft.

I'm in DFW, but I'd like to keep this question as generic as possible since others may want to know what other aircraft options there are. But if you know of and airplane in the DFW area (or surrounding areas) please let me know.

  • $\begingroup$ If you list your location people may be able to alert you to a local plane that you are unaware of. $\endgroup$ – Dave Feb 13 '17 at 20:09
  • $\begingroup$ I added my location to the message. $\endgroup$ – Brad Feb 13 '17 at 20:44
  • $\begingroup$ This place has an Extra 300 which should have enough UL for you and an instructor and be fine to spin. $\endgroup$ – Dave Feb 13 '17 at 21:15
  • $\begingroup$ AFAIK, all C172s are approved for spins. The N-S models are, and I randomly checked an older H model POH and it is too. Always in the utility category, of course, and subject to what the operator, insurance, club rules etc. allow. Those things are probably a bigger issue than finding a C172, but you also have to find one that you can load and stay in the utility category, of course. Every aircraft is slightly different. $\endgroup$ – Pondlife Feb 13 '17 at 21:22
  • $\begingroup$ I second what @Pondlife said: certainly the C172 M and R models are also spin approved. Just looked up the data for the C172M that I flew most recently and it would be in the utility category with 20 gals of fuel (2.5 hrs), 280 in the left seat, and 130 in the right seat. I'm sure many similar aircraft are out there. $\endgroup$ – J Walters Feb 13 '17 at 23:07

A Cherokee 140 enter image description hereshould do it. Fill to just below the tabs and get an instructor that weigs 180 lbs.

  • $\begingroup$ Anyone know of a Cherokee 140 in the DFW area that I can do the spins in? $\endgroup$ – Brad Feb 20 '17 at 21:28

I'm a large individual myself, like you describe: tall but proportional, and was in a similar situation. In 2017, I found a place in Fullerton, CA that was able to accommodate me.

We used a Waco YMF-5C. With no canopy, my height wasn't a problem and we were well within CG limits and weight capacity (the front seat is designed to hold two "average" people).

Waco YMF-5C

  • $\begingroup$ Awesome, I bet that was fun! $\endgroup$ – Brad Jul 29 '17 at 22:34

Check out Four Winds aviation in McKinney, TX. There deal in aerobatic training and operate Decathalons, S-2Bs and an Extra 300L. Explain your situation to them. I believe it may be possible to do so in the Extra 300 with a light instructor onboard as well.

Off topic, but I'm not sure if any of these places are going to have emergency parachutes designed for a guy your size; that may be a deal breaker as well.

I would really not seek out spin training in a CE-172s, Cherokees and other trainers certified to spin in the Utility category envelope. These airplanes can be tricky to goad into a spin. In addition most IFR-equipped trainers are going to have gyro driven AIs DGs and turn coordinators and spinning will precess them to the point of being unreliable. Makes the FBO management cranky and few friends for you.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Parachutes are not required for spin training; see §91.307(d). Additionally, C172s are routinely used for satisfying the spin training required of CFI applicants. $\endgroup$ – J Walters Feb 13 '17 at 23:00
  • $\begingroup$ I tried Four Winds, we were out of weight and balance in their aircraft. $\endgroup$ – Brad Feb 14 '17 at 21:12

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