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Aircraft Review : PA28R Piper Turbo Arrow III / lV by Just Flight - Thranda

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JF_PA28_Turbo Arrow_Header.jpg


Aircraft Review : PA28R Piper Turbo Arrow III / lV by Just Flight - Thranda


In October 2017 Just Flight with partner Thranda released the PA28R Piper Arrow lll. Which by all accounts it is an extraordinary aircraft. The aircraft is also in the company of some of the most competitive competition with both AeroSphere Simulations and vFlyteAir both providing the same Arrow lll versions for choice. All are good, but vFlyteAir's version just updated is also exceptional. In reality the vFlyteAir version of it's Arrow lll should have won my best aircraft of the year for GA aircraft, but the update was released to late to take into consideration, but still the JustFlight/Thranda Arrow lll would still have picked up the top gong because it does lift up the level of immersion and the overall realistic sheer flying feel of the aircraft.


Mostly I thought that was going to be the only JustFlight/Thranda release of 2017, but just days before Christmas on the 22nd December they then released this version of the Arrow in the lV and also threw in a Turbo for good measure.


So if your first thought was "oh that's a bit of a deal in having to now buy another expensive Arrow lll to get the Turbo". Then don't fret that one as if you do already own the original Arrow lll then this Turbo lV can be added to your pleasure for just only $14.99 and you also get the Arrow lll Turbo as part of the package.


The "Turbo lV" is distinctive because it has a T-Tail instead of the lower conventional rear tailplane.


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Which gives the aircraft a more cleaner line. The debate is if it is more effective, because the tailplane is high out of the prop-wash and you need a slightly higher speed (75 kts) to takeoff, but they don't create much drag and that is reflected in the slightly higher speed 153 knts (Arrow lll is 149 ktns).


As noted the Arrow lll in the low tailplane version but now with a Turbo that is also part of this package, so if you want the extra power but with the conventional tail then you have both.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow lll_head 1.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow lll_head 2.jpg

JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow lll_head 3.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow lll_head 4.jpg


Switching between aircraft types is done via the livery menu, change the livery and you change the aircraft type at the same time. So there is only one aircraft (.acf) file and so all set preferences and settings work between both aircraft.



Many users found the Arrow lll interior a bit overwhelming with all that reddness...  personally I loved it, but if you want some relief from the red then the Turbo has a more subdued feel with both Turbo versions having different colour schemes.


The Turbo Arrow lV cabin has a mixture of browns and ochres...


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JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Interior 3.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Interior 4.jpg


...  and the Turbo Arrow lll cabin is more to the full shades of blue.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow lll_Interior 1.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow lll_Interior 2.jpg

JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow lll_Interior 3.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow lll_Interior 4.jpg


They both don't have the drama of all that red, but the interior fit-out is still exceptional. In times of course you still have that funny overwhelming feeling of reddness, but that is not the original colour scheme passed over, but it is the overhead red night light and turn it down and the red mist feeling goes away.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow Red_Interior 5.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow Red_Interior 6.jpg


The only visual differences between the standard Arrow lll and the Turbo aircraft is that the distinctive hump has gone over the engine...


Arrow lll


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1,3 hump 1.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1,3 hump 2.jpg




JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1,3 hump 3.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1,3 hump 4.jpg


The Turbo's nose is slightly different and more aerodynamic, but the differences are minute here in speed.


Version 1.3

These details relate to all three Arrow lll/lV versions. For the original release Arrow lll it has been upgraded to v1.3 and although this package is noted as v1.0 it is in reality the v1.3 version across the board, so all changes noted are relevant to all the Arrow versions from JustFlight/Thranda. The only differences are in performance and aircraft dynamics with the conventional tail and the T-Tail versions.


There are besides the different types and interior colour schemes, the three aircraft are exactly the same in configuration and avionics, so X-PlaneReviews comprehensive review : Aircraft Review : PA28R Piper Arrow III by Just Flight - Thranda is totally relevant for the detail and design of this Turbo lll/lV version.


A few of my gripes have thankfully been covered with the v1.3 update, most are minute small in the full scheme of the aircraft but still the changes here are very welcome.


Click the chocks and the pilot now goes home...  "bye, bye...  Mr Pilot see you tomorrow".


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1.3 1.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1.3 2.jpg


The autopilot panel was non-scalable before and took up a lot of space...  now it is scalable and makes it's use and positioning so much more effective.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1.3 3.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1.3 4.jpg


The sounds panel has had a few tweeks and I like the "Enviro" option to turn down the wind noise (I have another wind noise on the XPRealistic plugin). The average looking menu panel remains, but you get used to it but not the odd native X-Plane X-Plane tiles for : logbook, weight, balance and fuel, Ground handling and the GNS530 popup?


Electrics have had some attention and the excellent circuit breaker panel shows now the extent of the electrical detailing...  pull (or click) the "Instrument Panel" breaker and it goes dark, all lighting breakers work as perfection as well. The key switch turns "off" in no power now as well.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1.3 7.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_v1.3 9.jpg


Flying the...  Turbo

The flying characteristics between the Turbo and none Turbo are not significantly different, but you do feel the slightly extra power...  The original 200hp version was not the quickest horse out of the block and with a slight headwind 140 knts was about as fast as you flew. Here the Turbo is noticeable if not in outright power but in the back of your seat power feel, the 153 knt cruise does feel faster as does the takeoff roll.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 1.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 2.jpg


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 3.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 4.jpg


  As with the Arrow lll the trim is crucial for balance, it is still tricky to fly unless you get that trim setting absolutely right, once sorted the aircraft is a masterclass in feel and handling...


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 13 LG.jpg


Like I noted in the original review. This aircraft needs time and time in hours to understand its characteristics and talents, the more you fly the aircraft, the more it comes to you.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 5.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 6.jpg


But no one can waste the time up here with this Arrow, just looking at it will set your heart pumping.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 7.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 8.jpg


One of the most noticeable aspects is the drag on the aircraft in power. So dropping the gear or flaps, but also in the throttle position creates significant drag. Even if you pitch down, if you don't reduce the power the aircraft will not descend in the same parallel. So even if you hold the pitch and increase the power then the aircraft will rise or again fall with a decrease of power, it is that finely tuned an aircraft and makes control as much for the throttle as for the yoke.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 9.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 10.jpg


T-Tails are known for their sudden loss of lift, so remember that in the landing phase you will have no prop-wash to get you out of trouble, and so too high a pitch can hide the tail from the airstream and you can fall into a stall.


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 11.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow_Flying 12.jpg


I still put the mixture to lean to land, but the idle ratio has had some adjustment in v1.3 and that makes it about perfect with not that surge of power when the aircraft is back on the ground....  lovely.



There are two sets of liveries for both the Turbo in : N48427 (USA), D-ERMT (Germany), G-OBAK (UK), HB-PMB (Switzerland), VH-LLA (Australi


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow Turbo_6.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow Turbo_3.jpg

JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow Turbo_4.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow Turbo_5.jpg

JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow Turbo_2.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow Turbo_1.jpg


T-Tail aircraft : D-EAIV (Germany), G-BOGM (UK), OE-KFT (Italy), OK-MAN (Czech Republic), N3023K (USA)


JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow T_4.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow T_5.jpg

JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow T_2.jpgJF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow T_3.jpg

JF_PA28_Turbo_Arrow T_1.jpg


There is blank for the Turbo lll, but both aircraft come with photoshop paintkits included...  and all liveries are of exceptional 4K (4096 x 4096) texture quality.



This package extends out the original Arrow lll aircraft to three versions (if you buy the extended Turbo pack here for the $14.99 offer), and that really opens up your choice between the original, the Arrow lll with a Turbo and the Arrow lV (T-Tail) with again the Turbo, you also get three different custom interiors as well and I am quite sure it is not too hard to create a Turbo with the Red interior. If your finances don't stretch to that, then just buy this Turbo package and still get the two great Arrow Turbo aircraft, as both are a great deal.


All aircraft detailing and quality is top-notch, the cabins alone are worth the investment, and they are some of the best in X-Plane and that is saying something as there is some great interiors out there. Avionics are great but not exceptional, a glass panel Aspen Avionics EFD1000 PFD system would be to die for in this aircraft and no dedicated Weights&Balance menu is a surprise as well.


This package and the original have all been updated to v1.3 and few early kinks have been cleaned up, the JustFlight/Thranda Arrow is even better now than before, but this is an outstanding aircraft, but requires a lot of skill and time to really get the best return for the investment, but what an investment...




X-Plane Store logo sm.jpg


Yes! the PA28R Piper Turbo Arrow III / lV by Just Flight - Thranda is NOW available from the new X-Plane.Org Store here :

PA-28R Turbo Arrow III/lV


Price is US$41.99


Note  - If you have already purchased the Arrow III by JustFlight you can purchase this new Turbo Arrow for only $14.99. Find your coupon code under your Arrow invoice at the store (doesn't apply to Arrows from other designers).



  • Accurately modelled PA-28R-201T Turbo Arrow III and PA-28RT-201T Turbo Arrow IV, built using real-world aircraft plans
  • Numerous animations including multi-animation passenger door that, when open, responds to G-forces and air resistance, baggage door, cockpit window, sun visors and oil cover
  • Ground equipment including chocks and tie-downs
  • 4096 x 4096 textures are used to produce the highest possible texture clarity
  • PBR (Physically Based Rendering) materials with real-time environment reflections for superb quality and realism
  • Detailed normal mapping for down-to-the-rivet precision of aircraft features.
  • Ability to use the in-flight livery switcher to switch between the Turbo Arrow III and IV variants in real-time without needing to use the aircraft menu.
  • A truly 3D virtual cockpit right down to accurately modelled seat belts and screw heads - every instrument is constructed fully in 3D with smooth animations
  • Cockpit textures feature wear and tear based on reference photos taken in the real aircraft to produce an authentic environment
  • Interactive engine start checklist that responds to user inputs and sim variables
  • Interactive checklists for every stage of flight
  • Aircraft configuration system that will allow you to choose between 'cold & dark' or 'ready for take-off' (if aircraft is stationary on the ground)
  • Fully functional and comprehensive IFR-capable avionics fit including:
    •  - KMA 20 audio selector unit
    •  - Fully featured X-Plane-native GNS530 (supports procedures out of the box,  and supports Navigraph and Aerosoft custom nav databases)
    •  - KX 175B COM 2 / NAV 2 radio
    •  - KN 62 DME unit which can display information from NAV 1 or NAV 2
    •  - Piper Autocontrol IIIB autopilot unit with navigation, heading and roll hold (hidden autopilot altitude hold system included for convenience)
    •  - KT 76A transponder unit
    •  - KR 85 ADF unit
    •  - Support for RealityXP GTN750 (sold separately, Windows only)
  • Custom-coded fuel system, including the option of automatic fuel tank switching for use on those long distance cross-country flights (this option is remembered for future flights)
  • Custom-coded electrical system with functional circuit breakers. Circuit breaker logic is linked to X-Plane's internal failure logic, so if the plane is set to fail a certain electrical component after a certain number of hours, the circuit breaker for that element will pop out.
  • Realistic landing gear system with intricate retraction animation, slow/fast tyre rotation animation (blurry when rotating fast), precise shock absorber animation with multiple linkages animated accurately, and wheel chocks and tie-downs
  • Functioning alternate air and static source controls
  • Fully implemented back-up landing gear system
  • Dedicated interactive engine pop-up window displaying values such as fuel tank weights and imbalance, fuel pressure, oil pressure, oil temperature, battery charge (with quick charge option), and information about spark plug fouling and vapour lock condition
  • Simulated vapour lock condition, with warning pop-up and suggested actions
  • Simulated spark plug fouling condition, with indication of percentage of fouling
  • Lighting system includes separate lighting control for gauges (via rheostat) and realistic implementation of navigation light / radio light rheostat
  • Functional electric trim control on yoke (requires electric trim button to be pushed)
  • Functional ELT which is automatically triggered above 4.6 G
  • Simulated fan and vent system with realistic blower sounds (linked to circuit breaker logic and electrical system for realism)
  • Custom external light logic with custom strobe light pattern and custom light halos for added realism


X-Plane 11
CPU: Intel Core i5 6600K at 3.5GHz or faster
Video card:  4GB VRAM (GeForce GTX 1070 or better or similar from AMD)
Windows 10 / 7 / Vista / XP, MAC OS 10.10 (or higher) or Linux
2.5GB hard drive space

Current version: 1.0 (Dec 22nd 2017)


Download of the Turbo Arrow III/lV is a huge 2,21gb and it is installed in your General Aviation Folder as a 2.48gb folder.
It is a fair size in gb's is this aircraft package and the question will be what of the framerates? Overall I found it very good, but it does take a fair time to load up in X-Plane depending on the size of scenery you are loading up with it. A fairly good graphics card is highly recommended and not less than a 4gb is required.
Documentation is excellent with two manuals included:
  • PA-28R Turbo Arrow III-IV manual A4 X-Plane 150.pdf
  • PA-28R Turbo Arrow III-IV ODM manual A4 X-Plane 150.pdf
The main aircraft manual covers everything including aircraft install, data with a fully detailed instrument locations and feature points and aircraft procedures (80 pages)
ODM covers aircraft performance and associated graphs (32 Pages)


Review by Stephen Dutton
8th January 2018
Copyright©2018: X-PlaneReviews
(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)

Review System Specifications:

Computer System: Windows  - Intel Core i7 6700K CPU 4.00GHz / 64bit - 16 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8Gb - Samsung Evo 512gb SSD 

Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.05

Addons: Saitek x56 Rhino Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose  Soundlink Mini

Plugins: Environment Engine by xEnviro v1.07 US$69.90 : XPRealistic Pro v1.0.9  effects US$19.95

Scenery or Aircraft

- KHAF - Half Moon Bay by Rising Dawn Studios (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$19.00


v1.3 Changelog (the same as the v1.0 notes for this Turbo lll/lV)


  • Improved prop disc visualization effects
  • Brightened landing spill light
  • Hiding pilot when static elements are enabled
  • Tweaked internal lit texture (text)
  • Improved electrical system
  • Fixed “Avionics Off” item in checklist
  • Added “Ground Roll” mixer to co-pilot volume knob.
  • Fixed flap deflection time
  • Revised gyro sound
  • Fixed halo artefacts
  • Adjusted idle ratio
  • Fixed NAV1/2 flip switch to be entered when in GPS mode.
  • Made starter key set to “Off” when starting from cold and dark
  • Upgraded SASL to 3.12
  • Added change log


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