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Aircraft Review : PZL-104 Wilga 2000 by Thranda Design


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Aircraft Review : PZL-104 Wilga 2000 by Thranda Design

 

Thranda Design is back with another utility aircraft, and this one is aimed at the flying and gliding schools and not the bush pilot ethic. As the Wilga was created for recreational sports, civil aviation, with a strong emphasis on glider-towing and parachute training.

 

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PZL-104 Wilga (Golden Oriole) is a Polish short-takeoff-and-landing (STOL) civil aviation utility aircraft was designed and originally manufactured by PZL Warszawa-Okęcie, and later by the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company (EADS), who had acquired the original manufacturer during 2001. The PZL-104 2000 Wilga ceased in production in 2006 with 1,000+ aircraft built.

 

Let us get something out of the way first... there was a modified version of the PZL-104 called the DRACO. Officially it was called the

"ZL-104 DRACO Turbine Wilga" and it was a highly modified Wilga 2000, created and built by Mike Patey. Patey attached a Pratt & Whitney PT6A-28 turboprop engine, modified the wings, ailerons, flaps, rudder, elevator, landing gear, and named the aircraft DRACO. The aircraft however was destroyed in a takeoff accident in Reno, Nevada on September 16th 2019, when Patey attempted to take off in a gusty cross wind, all the passengers survived the accident. Thranda has created an external DRACO version of their Wilga 2000, but it has also been announced it would not be released. My guess is because of the unusual G3X avionics installed as these custom units are not actually currently available in X-Plane and would have to be completely custom created from the ground up...  too much for one single aircraft variant.

 

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The light all-aluminum aircraft Wilga design is built around the engine, it is more about the pulling power than the outright performance. Installed is a Textron Lycoming IO-540-K1D5 naturally-aspirated rated engine at 290 horsepower at 2,575 RPM, it is one of the most powerful of the powerplants (there was a slightly larger 300 hp version later)....  but it is hard to see here such a big muscular engine set behind such a tight small aerodynamic nose...

 

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...  the forward cabin is almost bubble like, that leads to a Bell helicopter styled long thin tail, note the huge rudder and elevator aerodynamic surfaces for strong rear aerodynamic control. The visual impact is created by the almost insect like wide-spread trailing-link front suspension landing gear, if your visual clues are correct, the Wilga is indeed a tail-dragger aircraft.

 

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Outwardly the PZL-104 looks simplistic, but the devil is of course in the outstanding detail from Thranda. Every minute detail is covered, from the high quality (and animated) links, fuselage strengthening bars, outstanding rear wheel detail, right down to the manufacturer's licence plate upper rear cabin. So the modeling and detail is of the usual Thranda highest quality and workmanship.

 

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"Ah dirty", if you like your glass grubby and filthy, then you will love this glass, it can of course be hidden, but why would you want to "do that"...  lovely stuff isn't it, and it all comes applied to perfect glass.

 

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Cabin

The twin doors both spring upwards to revel a tight cabin (certainly to the thinning rear), a note that the open doors actually hinder the flap operation in flight, so the doors always have to be closed with the flaps extended. You can however remove the doors via small levers situated internally above the doors... In real life this lever would dislodge the pins in the hinges, allowing the pilot and crew to bail out!

 

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In a major context is the "Luxe" deep blue leather seating inside, not very utility, but looks fabulous and gives the aircraft a very different internal feel than what you would have expected...  note the extreme quality seatbelt webbing and the extraordinary chrome latches.

 

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The leather detail and quality is just absolutely superb, very realistic and feels (looks) exactly like the leather seats on my own car (except mine are black and not blue) but I could smell them here as these seats are so realistic...  in the rear there is a small baggage area with the fuselage strength bars around you. Note the lovely floor chrome seatbelt anchors, great detail.

 

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The forward view is dominated by those very odd shaped sticks, an oval padded stick feel a little Spitfire WW2, but far bulkier... different?

 

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The high stance facia has a Beaverish feel with it's pronounced centre avionics extrusion and instrument side panels. The Sticks (?) can be hidden by pressing the bases, and individually as well. Set behind are a lovely set of chrome rudder pedals, and quite big for such a small aircraft... but very bush pilot chunky in design.

 

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There is a very nice "Gust" lock when you remove the key, and a disconnect button on the top of the sticks.

 

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Instrument Panel

If you are familiar with Thranda instrument panels, you will know there is no really standard layout, as the panels can be customised, so the default below is just that being one of the many layouts.

The panel though is still laid out via a certain configuration i.e; Flight Instruments above left panel and below the Switches and Electrical panel. Middle extrusion has the Radios (Avionics), Right top the Engine Gauges and parameters, below right are the Circuit Breakers and middle lower is the Throttle Quadrant with a Throttle, Propeller Speed and Fuel Mixture push-pull knobs.

 

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There are some really nice features and touches here...  Air vents can be turned on/off and manoeuvred in any direction, clicking the Audio Jacks will drop the sound (for headsets), Lower Heating controls can be used, and you can open the Circuit Breaker box with the active Breakers (Fuses) inside. And note the lower left "Tow" Handle release (X-Plane tow cable).

 

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To your left lower side panel there is a very nice "Trim Wheel" (with trim markers) and the Wilga's large wing flaps are mechnically-driven via a handle lever located up and to the left of the pilot. The flaps have three pre-set positions of 0º, 21º, and 44º degrees.

 

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On the floor between the control sticks is a very nice Fuel selector...  Left-Right or centered both tanks.

 

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Super nice top is the custom Signalling and Warning Block (Annunciators) panel, and the metal shielded Whiskey Compass.

 

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Customising

The Thranda Wilga 2000 can be highly customised to suit your taste in a system called the "Dynamic Generation Series". So in reality there is no default instrument setup as noted.

 

There is a "Menu" Tab (arrow) is far left middle of your screen, this will activate the Pop-Out Menu (We will look at the other tab options later).

 

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The sixth "PANEL" Tab option allows you to adjust or change the instruments and dials. Scroll the "Panel Preset" number (arrowed) to see the three preset layouts.

 

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Alpine Avionics Evolution

The highlight is the EFD 1000 which is a self-contained multifunction digital display that is divided into a Primary Flight Display (PFD) in the top half, and an Electric Horizontal Situation Indicator (EHSI) in the lower half. As EDF 1000 systems go it is not highly featured with the GPSS, MAP,  360 and Menu functions are all not simulated. All the lower NAV1/NAV2/GPS selections are however available, as is the TPS (Tapes) see/hide option with the MIN (Minimums) selectable as well. and the PFD can be reversed with the EHSI. The EFD 1000 can be used with the S-TEC 55x. Another highlight is the option of the authentic Collins 614-12 ADF receiver.

 

Customising the panel is easy, just select the "3D EDIT PANEL MODE" that gives you access to all of the 44 individual instruments and avionic units...  There some great options including S-TEC 55x Autopilot,  Angle of Attack gauge...

 

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...   and the option to add in the Reality XP GTN 750...  For those who own the RealityXP GTN 750 addon (this is an optional addon)

 

For those that find instruments are not to their liking in say, "I wish I could move that altitude meter just a bit more to the left", then here you can adjust that, or even swap instruments around to your liking, here above I have swapped over the GNS 430 to the GNS 530...

 

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...  when done I can "ADD" (or Duplicate) in a new "Preset", and then "Save" that new layout Preset (Preset 3/3). So basically you can start off with a completely blank instrument panel and then create your own unique or personal instrument layout...  and you can have up to or save 14 different instrument layouts. And it is however very important to restart X-Plane to lock in the new instrumentation layout.

 

Notably missing though in the "PANEL' tab this time is the different panel backgrounds as on the Thranda PC-6 Turbo Porter, here you only get the default lovely steel metal facia background.

 

This customised panel feature is a very Thranda (Dan Klaue) sort of options galore "I'll give you everything" sort of fun aspect of their aircraft. It is very clever and it will make a lot of users very happy out there.

 

Menu

As noted the "Menu" Tab (arrow) is far left middle of your screen, this will activate the Pop-Out Menu... The Menu has seven menu tabs in; GENERAL, LIVERY, WEIGHT/BAL, CAMERA, AUDIO/SLEW, PANEL and MISC (Miscellaneous)

 

Menu - General

The menu "General" sections covers quite a lot of options, the layout is highly detailed and very comprehensive.

 

General menu selections cover Window and Instrument Panel Reflections on/off, Startup Running on/off, Chocks and Brakes on/off.

 

Three selections placed right cover group items, but any one item can be also accessed via "Click Spots" and can be individually selected or hidden via the aircraft graphic. "ALL COVERS" will select engine inlet/outlet covers and pitot cover, "ALL TIE-DOWNS" for rear fuselage and wing tie-downs and "ALL DOORS" for both the cockpit doors. All EXT - External Lights can be switched on and off as can ALL INT - Internal lights.

 

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There is an "Electric Tug" that can be used to move the aircraft around on the ground via your joystick (left,right-forward,backwards)

 

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There is the selection of a SIMPLIFIED or REALISTIC tailwheel action. in Simplified mode the tailwheel is the standard X-Plane rudder connected yaw in a range of +- 30 degrees, In Realistic mode it functions as a real tail dragger loose aircraft. There is a section in the manual relating to the steering in the freewheeling mode and rudder pedal steering is also available.

 

A new feature (for Thranda) on the General Menu is the built in "Checklist" (Lower, low right). And very good it is in red, or checked green choices. You can have checklist pop-up or windowed modes

 

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Menu - Liveries

Second Menu option is liveries, there are two options here with the first being "PAINTED LIVERIES". There are altogether 10 liveries or two blank and eight designs, and all are of extremely high quality and creative flare. To note that a couple are very similar except for a different registration.

 

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Two liveries are "Dynamic" in resources (White)...  another New feature is the (Quick) selection of Dirt (Ext) Externally, Scratches and Dirt (Int) Internally. Via three percentage selections you can adjust the amount of Dirt, Scratches and Dirt Int on the aircraft (0%-255%) and apply it instantly.

 

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So you can have either a pristine or a very grubby aircraft with just a twirl of the numbers. This can be applied to any of the liveries.

 

Dynamic Liveries

Not happy with any of those designs, then why not create your own livery!  With their earlier release of their Kodiak and with the PC-6, then Thranda  introduced a clever feature of a way to design your own livery. This is done by switching from PAINTED LIVERIES to DYNAMIC LIVERIES top.

 

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You have a menu to select on the right that can colour a certain part of the aircraft, like the Roof, Wing, Tail or Wing tips. Select which one you want and then adjust the RGB colours for that certain area, it looks hard but you can easily design a very nice livery in about twenty minutes...  the selections of Dirt (Ext), Scratches and Dirt (Int). Metal(ness) and surface Rough(ness) can also be added or adjusted as seen earlier...

 

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.. , when done you can "save" or ADD the livery and then "APPLY" it to the aircraft. The conversion takes a few minutes, but the results are excellent, and in your own design...    of which I like very much.

 

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There are also already 30 Presets to choose from or to adjust, without getting your hands dirty.

 

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Menu - Weight/Bal

The Wilga has a great Weight and Balance menu. Lbs and Kgs which can be selected and changed via the toggle...

 

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Fuel can be added and the amounts are then shown and are adjustable as well in the menu (above). Pilot, passengers and cargo can all be set for individual weights and the CofG (Centre of Gravity) parameters are all shown on a graph, when done you can save the configuration and reload it.

 

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But there is a compromise? If you want a full passenger and baggage load, then you can't have full fuel tanks, as the weight takes you over the weight and the CofG limits. For two passengers (maybe a bag thrown in) then can you have your full tanks and the range.

 

Adding in passengers gives you a pilot (Daniel Klaue) and in the passenger seat his wife, but there are no rear passengers or baggage, and both are nicely body and head animated. Note...  if you turn off the aircraft's electrical power, then they both disappear.

 

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Menu - Camera

There is a camera feature under the menu "Camera" selection. To the right is the default views can be selected via a menu, or press the keypad to select the view. The FOV or Field of View is adjustable via a slider.

 

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The left side of the panel is the "Walkaround" views, just pick the dot viewpoint you want to see to rotate around the aircraft.

 

Menu - Audio/Slew

Sound can be adjusted via the sound menu. There are seven slider selections with: Master, Aircraft External, Aircraft Internal, CoPilot, Radios, Environmental and User Interface. One other sound setting is on the Flap panel...  As noted, on the right and left of the panel you get the audio simulation of an active noise canceling headset, which is seen as wearing a headset. Sound quality is beyond excellent as it is a built in audio mixer, so you can individually control the audio channels in real-time, you can adjust volumes while hearing them play.

 

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Slew mode allows you to manually move the aircraft around in a disconnected X-Plane space. It functions by temporarily overriding the various aerodynamic and physical forces on the X-Plane settings, it is to allow the user to reposition the plane as desired. This feature is however highly touchy and is mostly used with the floats option (not yet on the Wilga, but on the Beaver and PC-6).

 

Menu - PANEL...  as seen above

 

Menu - MISC

The Misc (Miscellaneous) page has four quarters that covers options for; Skis, Tires, Windows and DynaFeel.

 

Skis...  will add on quality skis to all three wheels in the larger two front and the smaller rear tailwheel.

 

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Tyres...  will change the standard tyres to the "Tundra" large balloon tyres.

 

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Windows...  will change the main side windows from a flat window to a bubble window.

 

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DynaFeel... is a brand new feature from Thranda. This panel is to give you a "seats of your pants" feel to your flying.

 

"The DynaFeel system dynamically adjusts the rate at which the controls deflect, based on airspeed and how much the control is deflected. This means the controls will feel light and responsive at low speeds and with small deflections, but will get progressively heavier as the airspeed increases."

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Flying the Wilga 2000

Like any bushy utility aircraft, the PZL-104 is made for simplicity...  unlike the old cranky Beavers, it starts very easily, click the Fuel Pump on, adjust the fuel mixture, touch a bit of throttle and turn the key to start, but the key can be hard to get to, as you have to either hide the stick, or fidget the key through the oval (doable!), and the Wilga will start instantly... so it feels modern more than the usual tired, old and buggered.

 

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On start up the sounds are excellent with high fidelity, multi-track sounds that come with smooth transitions and very good atmospheric effects.

 

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Flaps are set to 21º (Takeoff), and remember this is a STOL (Short Takeoff and Landing) aircraft, so the lift created by the really well done, and the permanent "Leading-edge slot" design on the Wilga is very visible here.

 

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If you liked your Wilga dirty, or worn...  then it really shows on the windshield, it feels and looks very and highly realistic, however the reflections are very strong. Notable also are the cage strength bars that cross down the windshield, and they do hinder the view forwards...  and by quite a bit.

 

Okay i'm cheating in being in the "Simplified" steering mode, but I don't have rudder pedals to toe-brake, so the taxi is quite easy, and you trundle along to the runway... 

 

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...  sounds are really good, 360º feel and aural direction, move your view and the sounds change to the direction and to the source of the sounds (i.e. the engine), or the excellent wind noise in flight. Trim is dead centred for takeoff...  my gut feeling is that you could play with the trim on takeoff to find the best balance position.

 

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Push in the throttle knob and release the brakes and your moving...  the Wilga is very tail-dragger in feel, loose then as more aerodynamic control comes in you steer with only the rear aerodynamic surfaces, and it doesn't take long for the tail to take hold...  50 knts and the tail is already in the air and you are working the rudder with it's directional control.

 

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You feel like you are only driving along the runway, and could do this as long as you wanted to, but a slight pull back of the stick will simply lift you into the air, but don't go aggressive, just a touch rearwards is all that is needed, rotation is only around a smidge above 62 knts

 

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Quickly retract the flap to 0º, this will give you speed and lift to climb-out cleanly, keeping the flap down will actually hinder your forward and upward progress... I will note a slightly annoying looping sound on climb-out, it goes away quickly when trimmed out level and it isn't in the other sound ranges, but the sounds are quite noticeable in that phase. 

 

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Bushies love these aircraft, and you can feel why here. To a point they are all pure stick and rudder control, once the trim has been balanced, you can fly and manoeuvre the slight machine around on a single pivot...  balance of course is everything, get that right and everything else is super easy. But to note that you have to cater for the different fuel and passenger loads, as the Wilga is very sensitive to weight...  more weight in the rear changes the feel considerably and the then required different speeds and climb-out, it is a lightweight aircraft that can carry/pull loads, a typical bush aircraft. Full power (29.2 in.Hg, 2575 RPM) can be used, but keep an eye on the temperature of your oil and cylinder heads, and a typical power setting might be 22 inches MP and 2350 RPM for the cruise phase.

 

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Official Rate of climb is 5.5 m/s (1,082 ft/min), but you would never approach that number, as in reality you wouldn't fly really high, unless dropping crazy parachutists...  the ceiling is only 4,040 m (13,255 ft) anyway.

 

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Speeds are cruise around 112 knts and a never exceed speed of 131 knts, with a range of a respectable 670 km (416 mi, 361 nmi) on a 100.4 US Gallons usable total (602.4 lbs, 273.2 kg) fuel capacity.

 

The outside wind intensity are heavily affected by slip and AoA.  As the more the surface area of the fuselage is hit by oncoming wind, the louder the sounds are, and the effect is very good as the speed builds... this aircraft is all about feel. And you can exaggerate the effect by using the DynaFeel intensity control, or panel...  The combinations between light and heavy is quite superb, and you can feel it out in real time and find the right balance to suit your flying. Drop everything to 0% and there is practically no feel in the controls, and full sliders can make the controls extremely heavy in contrast...  it takes the X-Plane control settings to a completely different level again, plus it gives you a much more realistic aircraft...  the main bonus is that you can dial in that feel that YOU want and not what is provided...  interesting idea.

 

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Lighting

The lighting is quite basic. Two very nice authentic MaxDim lower left panel lighting knobs adjust the instrument lighting and avionics lighting...  the instruments are also a lovely mixture of back-lighting and indirect lighting...

 

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...  there is a single overhead light, roof mid-cabin that will illuminate the instrument panel and light up the rear, which is very dark with the overhead lighting switched off. Odd is the really bad windscreen reflections (below) in the dark, and they make flying virtually impossible, unless you turn the reflections off in the (General) menu.

 

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Externally you have very nice LED lighting with the landing light in the left wing, and the taxi light in the left gear strut, they look amazing with the pin-dot LED look...  the rest is quite basic, LED Strobes, Navigation lights and a tail-top beacon.

 

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Not that really the Wilga is a night flying aircraft unless you are either Charles Lindbergh, or making a run for home in the twilight.

 

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You know bushy aircraft, are distances with nothing to be seen out of the window, but come with great landscapes...

 

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...  the large side windows give you a great view out, so the cabin is tight, but light and airy. This instrument layout has two VOR instruments for VOR 1 and VOR 2, but no HSI (Horizontal Situation Indicator), not great for being miles away from any VOR stations, so I am using the heading bug (arrowed below left) to give me a direction (quarters) to the angle of the runway, into a creating my own circuit path.

 

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Losing altitude is extremely easy... just pull out the throttle knob, no need for any pitch movements as the Wilga will sink nicely to around 400 fpm, obviously more power will arrest the descent of control your height, but oddly when descending the speed does not change, so to reduce my speed I drop the flaps to 21º, and this does a nice job in slowing down the aircraft to about 55 knts.

 

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The timing of the secondary flap drop 44º degrees as it has to be absolutely perfect...  too fast and the Wilga will float really (really) badly (in either flap down movement) in the change of speed...  you are aiming for the low 50 knts or less before pulling that handle all the way down.

 

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Once there though and it just a control of the throttle to perfect your descent...  you will jiggle about a bit at these low speeds, but dance on the rudder pedals and twitch the stick to have complete control to position the aircraft over the runway, in the sub 50 knts zone.

 

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You can come down and hover over the runway at around a few meters, and stay there as long as you want to in fact, but a slight reduction of power will bring you slowly down to the runway and in your own time, as you have the balance and feel to do that...

 

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....  touch!

 

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Now comes the tricky dicky part, as when you lower the speed the tail starts weaving! I will note that historically taildraggers and me are not the best of companions, a competent tailer my do this aspect far better than me, but once settled the Wilga becomes a nasty handful....  I have tried slowing down very, very slowly, but also slowing down as quick as I can, but I get the same result, a nasty tail swing and loss of control...

 

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...  note the excellent compression in the undercarriage, it is very realistic...  at least I end up facing the (wrong way) and the taxiway I want.

 

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Note to self...  need to practise taildragger landing (again). At least the Wilga maybe the right aircraft to practise taildragger landings in!

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Summary

Thranda Design have created a pattern in their releases...  hard working utility aircraft with a bit of roughness. Already we have had the Kodiak, Pilatus PC-6 and of course the sensational DHC-2 Beaver, the latest to join the fleet is another working aircraft, this time for flying and gliding schools in the Polish PZL-104 Wilga 2000.   Basically it is a Bushy style aircraft, neat, tight but with a powerful Lycoming IO-540-K1D5 290 hp engine.

 

Thranda Design are also about features, and more features in their "Dynamic Generation Series"...  but not in additions (yet their are loads of them anyway), but in personalised configurations including an innovative menu system to create your own instrument panel layout or layouts as up to 14 different layouts of 44 instruments and avionics can be saved with 3 default layouts including a Aspen EFD 1000 with S-Tec 55x autopilot, a huge selection of 10 liveries and 20 "Dynamic" presets is still complimented with a feature to create your own colour scheme and livery, then you can save them as well. Advanced FMOD-based sound system is of course recorded from a real Wilga 2000, with a full audio-mixing desk gives you total control with detailed cockpit sounds... and here is another new innovation with the DynaFeel intensity control depth from light to heavy controls...   in other words it is all pretty damn good.

 

Modeling and aircraft detail is also and as usually totally excellent, and you can (again) dynamically change the Dirt, Grunge, scratches and nicks externally and internally on the fly. So this lovely aircraft can be as clean or as dirty as you want...  Skis, Tundra Tyres and Balloon windows can also be added/changed as you wish.

 

Another bush style pilot's aircraft to fly and love, the Wilga 2000 is extremely responsive to your inputs, but that is why you love this aircraft, skills are required to get the very best out of the machine as it is a powerful but a small taildragger.

 

Flexible, huge feature list, detailed and personalised all in one aircraft...  and a real pilot's aircraft to boot, another huge winner from Thranda Design!

_______________________________

 

Yes! the PZL-104 Wilga 2000 by Thranda Design is NOW available from the X-Plane.Org Store here : 

 

Wilga PZL 104 Dynamic Generation Series

Price is US$39.95 Release sale only US$32.95

 

Special features:
  • NEW: DynaFeel - Advanced custom flight dynamics, affecting control input effects at different airspeeds. Adjust the heaviness of the controls in real-time via sliders in pop-up window.  
  • Regular Tires, Tundra Tires, Skis
  • FULLY configurable 3D instrument panel.
  • Over 50 instruments to choose from! (Including Aspen EFD 1000, and support for RealityXP GTN750)
  • Move any instrument to any location on the panel, or even between pilot and copilot's panel!
  • Comes with 3 panel presets, but can easily be expanded by moving instruments around, using a simple and intuitive interface.
  • Save your own presets, and even share them with the community!
  • Instruments can be moved in 3D directly, on a 2D pop-up preview window, or by numerical entry for precise placement.
  • GNS430 and 530 can be swapped out, but a restart of the plane is required, as 430s and 530s are mutually exclusive in terms of compatibility in X-Plane
  • Dynamic livery editor (like in the Kodiak, the Pilatus PC-6, and the Beaver)
  • Full PBR control! Create stunning metallic liveries, or matte, sand-blasted look in mere seconds!
  • Additional control over dirt/grime, scratches/nicks, adjustable in real-time to dial in the exact desired amount of wear and tear.  Affects airspeed. Clean plane will fly 2-3 MPH faster.
  • Control over interior dirt, grime, scratches, nicks, also adjustable in real-time.
  • Create "virtual" liveries, based on one common design layout, and assign any colour to any available paint segment.
  • Quickly create preview of livery in real-time, using intuitive controls.  Previews now include visualization of metallic materials and dirt overlays. 
  • Apply selected livery in real-time, right in the sim, without the need to even touch a 3rd party image editor or load extra software.
  • Option to change the tail number in real-time, or disable it altogether. (Enter a "space" instead of a callsign number to create a blank tail number.)
  • Easily and quickly create dozens of unique color schemes in-sim!
  • Also supports 12 traditionally painted liveries, all visible in a convenient pre-selection preview window.
  • Uses SkunkCrafts Updater.  Option to participate in Beta program, via check box in SkunkCrafts Updater. 
  • Excellent hi-res PBR realistic materials, featuring true-to-life plate deformation and to-the-rivet precision.
Feature-rich elegant fly-out menu with the following features:
  • Realism settings for engine and tail wheel (simplified vs. realistic modes)
  • Checklist pop-up controls
  • Innovative electric tug, with in-panel controls to move forward/backward at the desired speed, and steer proportionally
  • Control over chocks, individual tie-downs, covers, internal lights, external lights, etc.
  • Option to start up running (all systems ready), or cold-and-dark, for realistic startup procedures.
  • Control landing lights, strobes, beacon, and nav lights via pop-up window
  • Detailed weight and balance manager with visual chart, individual passenger seat weight control, Lbs/KG unit toggle, CG control, and the option to save and load configuration.
  • Multiple camera snap points, above and beyond what's available by default in X-Plane, so you can perform your walk around checks.
  • Adjust your camera's Field of View without having to go to an X-plane menu, allowing for real-time adjustments.
  • Audio mixer: individually control audio channels in real-time, so you can adjust volumes while hearing them play.
  • Slew control: move your plane around the world, temporarily bypassing flight physics.  Includes ground mode and air mode.
  • Dynamic panel control page, with a separate view for the entire panel layout preview, or a per-instrument view, allowing for fine-tuning of instrument position, as well as copy-paste function to quickly replace instruments.
  • The "Misc" page in the fly-out window contains options to customize the plane, such as:
    •    skis
    •    tundra tires
    •    bubble windows
    •    DynaFeel intensity
Flight dynamics and systems:
  • DynaFeel: an increase in airspeed doesn't just limit the control surface deflections, as normally done in flight sims... but control deflections feel increasingly heavy. Tiny deflections still feel nimble, even at higher speeds.
  • The Wilga's trailing link front suspension provides ultra-plush damping and shock absorption, but also has some unique quirks during taxiing that are also simulated.
  • The Wilga also has permanent leading edge slats, contributing greatly to its docile flight and stall characteristics.
  • This model of the Wilga has the most powerful engine of the series, making it excellent for STOL operations and bush flying.
  • Tie-downs and chocks actually keep the plane from moving, even in high winds.
  • Doors can be jettisoned.
Advanced FMOD-based sound system:
  • High fidelity, multi-track sounds with smooth transitions and amazing atmospheric effects.
  • Individual volume control over different aspects of the sound experience, adjustable in real-time (while listening to the sounds)
  • Different sounds for front of plane than for back of plane
  • Panning around the plane in exterior view yields awesome 3D audio effects, including "blade slapping" sound when view is perpendicular to prop
  • Individual buttons and switches in the cockpit each have their own unique sound.
  • Sound of engine cooling off after flight realistically implemented (based on temperature)
  • Outside wind intensity is affected by slip and AoA. (The more the surface area of the fuselage is hit by oncoming wind, the louder the sounds).

 

Requirements

X-Plane 11 
Windows, Mac or Linux
4 GB VRAM Minimum. 8 GB+ VRAM Recommended
Download Size: 988 MB
Current and Review version : 1.0 (September 21st 2021)
The plane comes with an auto-updater

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Installation and documents: Download is 1.45gb and the aircraft is deposited in the "General Aviation" X-Plane folder.

Installation key is required on start up and is supplied with the purchased download file. Note updates are available via the "Skunkcrafts Updater" application.

 

Documents supplied are:

  • Thranda Wilga PZL-104 Graphics Settings XP11.pdf
  • X-Plane G430 Manual.pdf
  • X-Plane G530 Manual.pdf
  • Thranda Wilga-PZL-104 Documentation.pdf
  • IUL_104M.pdf*
  •  

*The IUL_104M manual is the original Polish manual for the Wilga (in Polish)

_____________________

 

Aircraft Review by Stephen Dutton

23rd September 2021

Copyright©2021: X-Plane Reviews

 

Review System Specifications: 

Computer System: Windows  - Intel Core i7 6700K CPU 4.00GHz / 64bit -32 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8Gb - Samsung Evo 1TB SSD - Sound : Yamaha Speakers YST-M200SP

Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.55

Plugins: Global SFD plugin US$30.00 : Environment Engine by xEnviro US$69.90 : RK Apps XPRealistic v2 - US$34.99

Scenery or Aircraft

- PAEN - Kenai Municipal Airport, Alaska by NorthernSkyStudios (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$14.95

 

(Disclaimer. All images and text in this review are the work and property of X-PlaneReviews, no sharing or copy of the content is allowed without consent from the author as per copyright conditions) All Rights Reserved

 

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  • Stephen changed the title to Aircraft Review : PZL-104 Wilga 2000 by Thranda Design

Nice comprehensive review - Thranda is on a roll.  Bought it yesterday - happy to have saved seven bucks and it works perfectly right out of the box.  Back in the seventies or eighties, one showed up in Anchorage but local pilots were mostly underwhelmed - it had a round engine and was way too pretty for a bush plane.

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