Just did the first test flight of the first XCub ordered on 29” Alaska Bush Wheels. After flying that aircraft (S/N 16 - N75XC) today, I do believe the 29” ABW’s will be a very popular tire choice for XCub. Here’s what I noted:
- Better 3-point attitude/AOA.
- Takeoff felt shorter (especially with the 3-point & two notch method), meaning the aircraft lifted into ground effect sooner on its own, but I didn’t have to raise the tail to get it off the ground like the with 35” ABWs previously tested.
- Minimum landing distance was noticeably shorter. Aircraft AOA was perfect for a 3-point landing at minimum airspeed in ground effect (the aircraft wants to land tail first at minimum airspeed in ground effect with 26" or 850 tires).
- Slips are significantly better, with these tires the XCub slips much more like a Carbon Cub.
- Crosswind landings and takeoffs were well behaved (about 80° from the right at 15 gusting to 19 KTS).
- Airspeed loss in cruise was less than expected, roughly 140 TAS at 5,500’ and power at 2400/24" (pretty rough air so 125 MPH IAS was a bit of an estimate).
- Flown at full forward and full aft CG at both 35 MPH IAS and 167 MPH IAS. No adverse conditions noted.
- Also, it looks sharp!