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Mooney Transition Training - any recommendations?


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Greetings Everyone!

A couple of friends of mine and I are buying a 1991 Mooney M20J. We've all just recently completed our PPL and are very much looking forward to owning our first aircraft.

We've been advised that the Mooney is a far more complex aircraft that the 172s we trained in, and that we should take our transition training very seriously!

To this end, I was wondering if there are any European based Mooney instructors, who could support us with that? We're going to be basing the aircraft in lovely Croatia where the weather is pretty much great all year round.

Any recommendations you have, would be much appreciated.

Kind regards,



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I can't help with instructors for you, but I bought my M20-C with 62 hours in my logbook, all in C-172s. The J will be larger, faster and more refined.

Approach the transition training just like you did as a Student Pilot. It is serious, like all flying.

  • memorize the important speeds--takeoff, stall clean, stall in landing configuration, best glide, flap extension, gear extension, etc.
  • make a good checklist, and use it every time
  • make three GUMPS checks for every landing:
    • watch for the light when you lower the gear on downwind
    • check the gear light again on base leg
    • check the mechanical indicator in the floor on short final
  • always trim for hands-off flying:
    • climbing from the airport, adjust the trim to keep the same climb if you let go
    • in cruise, adjust the trim to maintain level flight
    • when descending, adjust the trim to keep the same descent rate if you let go, verified by the VSI
  • learn how to slow down! You cannot fly a Mooney over the field at cruise speed and execute a 270º descending turn and enter the downwind leg at the proper speed! I began by planning my descent to pattern altitude 2-3 miles from the airport, and using that distance to slow the Mooney down. With a couple of years' experience, you can adjust this to be closer if you want to.

Most any good CFI can doe this for you, but one with significant Mooney experience will be able to show you better ways to do many things in your Mooney.

Welcome aboard, and prepare to enjoy yourself after you become a proficient Mooney pilot!

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On 11/30/2023 at 4:53 PM, MichaelSchw said:

We're going to be basing the aircraft in lovely Croatia where the weather is pretty much great all year round.

Congrats for the PPL !

Sounds like you have picked the right place to base it?

I fly in France (Normandie) and UK (Essex), I am happy to help with M20J transition if your aircraft is registered in EASA or UKCAA

Edited by Ibra
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Westflug in EDKA/Aachen

They used to have two M20J for charter (and hopefully still have) plus competent Mooney instructors. 

I did my transition training there (when the runway had a length of 520m) and it’s still the homebase for my M20R. 
 Meanwhile the runway is way longer..

Best, Matthias 

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