• Review: Carenado - CT182T Skylane

    CT182T Skylane

    Publisher: Carenado

    Review Author:
    Shawn Weigelt

    Suggested Price:
    $34.95

    Buy Here

    Carenadeo CT182T Skylane     Carenadeo CT182T Skylane

    Introduction

    I was absolutely thrilled when the September 24th announcement of the Carenado Cessna CT182T popped up in my newsfeed. There it was, the gorgeous Turbo Skylane that I had missed during its X-Plane 10 run, being rebuilt for X-Plane 11. I say that I "missed" the XP 10 Skylane, but the truth is that I purposefully didn't purchase it because I knew my, at the time, underpowered iMac wouldn't be able to handle the graphical demands of the HD textures coupled with Carenado's custom G1000 avionics.

    Now that I have a new(er) iMac and X-Plane 11, it is a real pleasure to be able to finally fly the airplanes that Carenado is bringing forward to the next generation.

    Carenadeo CT182T Skylane     Carenadeo CT182T Skylane

    Following the development of the X-Plane 11 Carenado Skylane on Facebook was a combination of excitement for the file tempered by disappointing comments from some within the flight simulation community. The lack of contentment and gratitude that is so pervasive within our instant gratification culture is very troubling to me, and flight simmers are certainly not immune to this. Most of the comments on Facebook concerning the XP 11 Skylane revolved around what airplanes individuals would like to have seen instead, and what features and avionics they think the file should have. This sort of griping is beyond annoying to me and is difficult to ignore. Still, I resolved to maintain a positive attitude and judge the file based on its own merits when it was released.

    The Cessna 182 Skylane is the logical "step up" airplane for pilots who have trained on or owned the smaller, less powerful 172 Skyhawk. The 182 offers significant performance advantages over the 172 in every area while still maintaining that legendary high wing and ease of handling that Cessna pilots are familiar with. The Turbo Skylane, as modeled here by Carnado, offers even more advantages especially when it comes to cruise speed and high-density altitude performance where the six cylinder turbocharged TIO-540 provides all 235 horses up into the flight levels. One of the best features of the Skylane has always been its load carrying flexibility. This trait has somewhat waned over the years, however, and newer airplanes equipped with modern avionics have much lower useful loads than the 182's of yesteryear. The published useful load of a typical 2005 model Cessna T182T is 1,089 pounds. Against 87 gallons/522 pounds of 100LL, that leaves a full fuel payload of 567 pounds. Good, but not great.

    Carenadeo CT182T Skylane     Carenadeo CT182T Skylane

    While the Skylane and Skyhawk share a passing resemblance with their braced high wing and fixed landing gear, the Skylane is noticeably sleeker and has a few other diagnostic differences to help distinguish it from its little brother. The rear passenger windows are a good place to start, which look like right triangles in the Skylane and are trapezoidal in shape on the Skyhawk. The rear window of the Skylane is a flat, single pane piece of glass whereas the Skyhawk's is more rounded off and has a central brace separating two panes of glass. Skylanes have a three blade constant speed prop and have a more nose up posture than a typical Skyhawk when on the ground. The aerodynamic wheel pants and sleeker vertical stabilizer are very evident on the Skylane and it is obvious that Cessna engineers have worked hard to squeeze as many knots out of the airplane that they could. Based on pure aesthetics, the Skylane wins hands down in my book, and is one good looking airplane.

    Carenadeo CT182T Skylane     Carenadeo CT182T Skylane

    Despite the legendary status that the Cessna Skylane in all its iterations enjoys in the real world, it is surprisingly absent from the X-Plane world. Sure, there are some older files out there made for old versions of the sim, but no truly high quality payware Skylane has existed for X-Plane in years with the exception of Carenado's X-Plane 10 (and now 11) model. This is a serious head scratcher for me, and I hope other developers take note and produce their own variations of this truly excellent light airplane.

    The attentive Carenado development team has stepped up to the plate and their Cessna T182T is now available for X-Plane 11. I was very excited to finally be able to get my hands on it for review and was hoping that it would live up to the hype I had built up for it in my mind. No question it looks amazing, but would Carenado's Skylane fly amazing as well? Does it fill the gaping Skylane hole in the X-Plane world or is it just another "meh" airplane that leaves the sim pilot wanting more? Let's find out!

    Carenadeo CT182T Skylane     Carenadeo CT182T Skylane


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