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Old 02-10-2005, 06:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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1980's Mooney vs Commander

I'm new to this forum and I apologize up front if this is an ignorant request, BUT I'd be interested in hearing your comparisons of 1980's Mooneys (say 20J) vs same vintage Commander (114?). I'd be interested in differences in quality of aircraft, flight characteristics, performance, operating / maintenance costs, how well they hold their value, etc. To my untrained eye, they both appear to be beautiful airplanes. Thanks.
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Old 02-11-2005, 04:06 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I've never flown the 114, personally I don't really like the way it looks either, but that's just me. I have however flown the M20J, it's a very nice flying plane. The M20 has a good cruise speed for it's power, it'll do around 150kts burning about 11gph. For some reason some people find the M20 difficult to land, however I find it one of the easiest planes to make greasers in. The M20 is going to have a much smaller interior than the 114, but I like to relate it to being like a sports car, small, but still quite comfortable. The Mooney is very responsive again the sports car analogy works here. Somewhere along the line the Mooneys got a bad rap for having a nasty stall, this however is an urban legend, I find it to have a docile stall similar to that of a Cherokee but alittle cleaner break. Overal I can't say anything bad about the Mooney's I think it's a great plane with very nice qualities. That's one reason they've got such a great resale value.
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Old 02-11-2005, 04:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Old 02-12-2005, 08:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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What's a "greaser"?

It doesn't have anything to do with trans-fats and the McDonald's Corporation does it...
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Old 02-13-2005, 09:36 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Strange,

Just my take on it. Like Redguy, I haven't flown the 114 (although if I was to buy a low wing SE airplane I would probably go with a Commander), but I have flown a Mooney.

The Mooney is compared to a porsche. Looks good, goes fast, is cramped, has no backseat (yes I know there is one, but with that little bit of room, it may as well not have one) and costs a lot. I did all of my CFII work in a Mooney 20J at ERAU and hated every minute of it. The cockpit layout looks like the engineer was on drugs. The gear handle was at the top of the dashboard, the flap handle was this little tiny 1/4" wide by 1/2" switch with no detents at the bottom of the dash and without electrim trim it was a nightmare. Without slats, slowing down was a major headache. You needed to plan ahead quite far because if you have to descend and slow down, it is really a workload, especially with no electric trim. The struts are not OLEOs. They are a combination spring/dampner system and if you don't put the aircraft down nice and easy, you will tend to bounce because they don't give much. In fact one of our students stalled the aircraft (on his checkride) doing short field landings (he pulled the power off at about 35') and put the strut through the wing and the instructor's seat came off the rails.

Not to belittle the aircraft completely, it is fast and looks that way. Also, I will have to say that it is a very stable IFR platform.

Like I said, I haven't flown the 114, but I have looked at them and talked to numerous people that have and they love them. I would suggest trying to find someone who owns a 112/114 and see what they have to say. There is probably an owners association that might have some info.

Hope this helps.

VB06
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Old 02-13-2005, 11:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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"Greaser"...?

Anyone...?
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Old 02-14-2005, 05:39 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Smooth landing, Wild blue.
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Old 02-14-2005, 12:06 PM   #8 (permalink)
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A greaser is a landing so smooth, you'd think you were landing on greese!
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Old 02-14-2005, 02:33 PM   #9 (permalink)
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ok, makes sense.
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Old 02-14-2005, 07:14 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I flown both..I'd say I'd take Mooney.
Mooney is a great airplane. It lands really good - with full flaps you can dive in that thing like in JU-87 Stuka during WWII It's pretty fast and easy to control. The version I flown (M20C) though had power control feature which I hate the most since you have to press the button every time you want to disengage it. Other ugly thing is fuel tank selector location - between legs..Yak! Other then that it flies great!

Commander is probably good and comfortable to take passanger with, but not as nearly as good in handling and landing like Mooney..

As somebody said here Mooeny is like a small fast car, and I totally agree with that . I'd prefer Mooney
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Old 02-15-2005, 02:06 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Other ugly thing is fuel tank selector location - between legs..Yak!

Ohh, it's accually kinda nice when you let the pretty lady site on the left side! Um excuse me but I have to swich the fuel.
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Old 02-15-2005, 02:07 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by WildBlue
"Greaser"...?

Anyone...?

Know what a slider is?
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Old 02-15-2005, 02:20 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Redguy
Ohh, it's accually kinda nice when you let the pretty lady site on the left side! Um excuse me but I have to swich the fuel.
I wish I could but in Mooney you sit kind of pulling your chest into attitude indicator
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Old 02-15-2005, 02:22 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Yeah, that's true. That was one thing that did bother me alittle at first, you do sit REAL close to the panel. But after a while it didn't really bother me.
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Old 12-19-2005, 08:19 PM   #15 (permalink)
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The Mooney fuel selector is a pain..but one guy I know made a small tool out of ABS pipe to reach it.
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