ATR42 handling

From:         Henry Law <hjl@thelaws.demon.co.uk>
Organization: None
Date:         05 Aug 96 23:32:57 
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In the August 1996 issue of the UK magazine "Pilot" an interesting
article on the ATR42 is published over the name of one Andy Foan.  In it
he tells of a successful aeroplane, but expresses the opinion that its
success is pretty much for commercial reasons rather than for the
excellence of the airframe.  For example his opening paragraph:

   "Ghastly!  I've been trying to think of a word that adequately
   describes the handling of this aeroplane and that is undoubtedly it"

   ".. the pitch control is passable but the roll control is awful ..."

   "... the yaw control defies description.  The rudder has such a time
   lag between operation and reaction that you sometimes wonder if you
   are in the same aeroplane."

Can this be so?  My only flights in an ATR have been with Continental
from Newark to Syracuse and back; as I remember on the outbound flight
we broke cloud pretty much overhead the airfield and the approach
consisted of a steep diving turn through about 270 degrees and 5000'
(???  I'm only a passenger) to land - I almost expected to see arrester
gear on the tarmac - and that doesn't seem to square with the
description above.

BTW in fairness to Mr Foan; he does go on to say "This aircraft may have
handling which can fairly be described as 'barely adequate' but in truth
that is all it needs to be. ... this is a very serious little airliner
.. in spite of the poor handling I enjoy flying it."  And it's a very
interesting piece.

--
Henry Law             <><      hjl@thelaws.demon.co.uk
Manchester, England