My company is in the market for an airplane. Does anybody here fly a pressurized piston twin? Which make and model? I’m trying to compare and contrast at this point to narrow the field. Your input is appreciated.
Is your company hiring a pilot to fly the aircraft? What company is it?
Never flown these but I would say a C421 or a Piper Navajo Cheiftian.
They are nice aircraft
Piper Chieftain’s are not pressurized, I own N59798 (TK Aviation) leased to Midwest Air Transport.
King Air’s are pressurized and are fantastic aircraft.
Well, luckily, I’ll be the pilot. We can’t afford a turboprop at this time, although a King Air would be our next step. We’re looking into Cessna 340’s, but still unsure.
Navajo has a pressurized aircraft, we flew one for years, but engines are expensive for overhauls and such thoughts to think about. Piper aerostar i believe has pressurized, but personal experience isnt high on my list.
Of course Cessna 421, i believe a 340 is also pressurized. Also for note many of these planes will likely be older planes and require a little more upkeep, plus often some of these plane have ceretain required AD and such that can make a plane not worth buying when dealing with resale or upgrading. There are some, in my opinion some decent king airs like C90 that can be bought at decent prices. Also can check into Cheyennes which are decent planes. really check with mechanics about which planes you consider so you dont buy a hangar queen. Lol
I know there were a few pressurized Chieftain’s but not many. With the Cessna’s remember the wing spar A. D. I would guess that most Cessna’s have had it done by now.
When it comes to buying a cessna, better check carefully if price is cheap. Many going cheap have not had the ad done. I would have to do more reading on theAD’s for those aircraft (I am an IA) to really say much on the subject. Navajo’s are a good aircraft and I do reccommend it, put when checking into the cost of a navajo with a some C90 the prices are not always a big difference. If another company is interested in a plane also buy a plane as a seperate corp then it hires itself to your business. Just an option Keeps it part 91 (study the details first lol)
I have flown two in my career that I liked. The first was the Cessna 421 (Golden Eagle), big and smooth, but you must be very careful in descents. It has geared engines, and maintenance can be a killer if you cowboy it. Go arounds take early decision time, also for the geared engines which do not make power changes as rapidly. The 340 and other 300 series Cessnas do not have the cabin space demanded for corporate work.
Better than that is the Aero Commander 500U (Shrike). This aircraft is a dream to fly, still has good support, and does not have the geared engines that the larger 600 series does. Its toughness is legendary (Bob Hoover flew one in airshows for years.) The performance is sterling even in hot and high conditions, and its a pussycat with one engine out. The suits like the low door that eliminates the need for an air stair.
Good Luck with your search.
anyone Hiring pilots…I’m looking for a job!!
Suggest that you utilize the services of Conklin deDecker and get some help from a knowledgable Broker. Conklin is at www.conklindd.com. They maintain databases on over 300 aircraft and their info is very accurate. Be sure consider ALL of your needs when selecting a make & model. Dig into the specific performance abilities of the AC - don’t just look at basic stats. Also, be sure to check with an insurance broker prior to making a final decision. Make sure that you can get the needed coverage levels for your level of experience.
You don’t have a lot of M&M choices, but the Cessna 340, 414A and 421C are all great airplanes and give a lot of bang-for-the-buck.
I operate a Cessna 340A with Ram series 7 upgrade. The 340 series is NOT part of the 400 series wing spar AD. The only recurring AD is an exhaust inspection. This is not a big deal. The aircraft is fast (210kts FL200 at 38gph, faster if you want to burn more gas) and very functional for it’s mission. Any pressurized piston twin should be researched and bought with a complete pre-buy inspection. If the useable load and range fit your needs, you will find it an excellent choice.
We have owned over 15 Chieftains over the years, a 421 and a Ram VII 414, and a Duke. All are great aircraft, the Chieftain will give you the best value in performance and size while keeping costs manageable. 300 and 400 series are great to fly but a little higher cost to keep up. The Duke is also a great value if the engines are taken care of, can carry as much as a 421 220kts 40gph. P-navajo’s are outrageously expensive nearly impossible to find parts for, especially the engines. If you are looking to upgrade to a turboprop in the future you should seriously consider a Merlin IIB, one of the best value’s in the aircraft market today for $300,000 you can have a cabin larger than a King Air 200, quieter that does 235kts 65gph for 1300nm. We have owned 5 or 6 Merlins over the years and they will blow a King Air’s doors off 100% of the time.
Hope this helps,
If you would like to know about Merlin IIB’s and III’s contact me at:
I’d like to know who’s hiring some pilots
I’d go with a 421C. They are quite, smooth, roomy, carry a good load, nice flying airplane. The 340’s are just a little tight for me (6’ 230lbs). Have one pilot that’s not a cowboy fly it and you’ll be fine. I’ve ran out one set of engines, never had a problem outside of regular maintance (421C’s do not have the ad’s of other 400 series, the engine beams, exhaust systems, wings are built different). If you can afford the turbine…might be the way to go, just watch cost.
Suggest that you look at all things (MX is the biggest on any turbocharged engine). Turbos themselves can go for $13,000 and most engines have two per engine. You need to be very careful on the letdowns and even the shutdowns.
A large safety factor for a lot of people is a turboprop. Whether you get a much older King Air (they turned 40, I think this year) or Turbo Commander, Conquest or the like. Word of caution, only the King Air is still in production. And trust me, you can probably hop into any King Air made and manage it (every panel is identical, with the exception of the newest glass cockpits). But you did mention that cost was a factor.
Conklin deDecker is going to be a must, as on reply already mentioned.
A lot of people out there are going to rag on this next one, but I have serveral hundred hours in single-engine turboprops and they are statistically safer than any piston twin engine. A turbine engine can take MCP to the numbers and be shut down minutes later without any worry to internal parts. My opinion is that the PC-12 is the next King Air for corporate travel. Super roomy, cruises at 250-270 kts (faster than most King Airs with half the fuel burn). I have test flown these aircraft, and they are very pilot friendly.
If you are considering a C340, the JetProp/Meridians have similar room, easily 50kts faster and less worry on engine(s). Less scheduled MX on the Jetprops. Meridians have a inspections every 30days (takes about 2 hours, battery strength, and other miniscule things).
Look at the Aerostar. You can get a 600P or a 601P Shooting Star for less than 300K. 265 Kts TAS at 75%.
I am not going to “rag” on you Brianamy, but you can talk stats all day long…the fact is, an engine lost on a single-engine airplane is…well, you know.
But don’t forget that a twin engine aircraft has TWICE the possibility of an engine out compared to a single engined aircraft. A four engined aircraft has FOUR times the possibility!
But if I lose ONE engine, I have the other to get me where I WANT to go…not where I HAVE to go. I will take a twin over a single anyday.
In theory. However, if x% of engine failures in twin-engine aircraft result in an accident and you’re exposed to that risk twice as much, it’s often times less safe.