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Thread: First-time buyer

  1. #1

    First-time buyer

    There can be a problem with disconnected or deteriorated drainage tubes. It is not too severe unless it has gone on long enough for corrosion damage. It would be a good thing to look for at a prebuy. It will require removing the forward side panels beside the pilot and copilot feet.

    Cold weather starting will not be much different than any other brand of airplane using a Lycoming engine. You can damage it with a cold weather start and pre-heat is advisable when colder than about 40 degrees. Roadside jumping kits address only battery problems and the damage comes from lubrication and clearance problems so a jumping kit will not help the cold start damage problem in a Beech or any other aircraft.

    I live in Texas, so cannot help you with your other questions.

    ----- Original Message ----
    From: Chris Clearfield <>
    Sent: Monday, February 5, 2007 11:44:50 PM
    Subject: [musketeermail] First-time buyer

    Hi Musketeer Mail,
    I'm new to the list; a student pilot hoping to be a first-time buyer,
    ideally, of a Sundowner (or one of its cousins). I've been excited to
    read reviews of the aircraft, and to read through the mailing list
    here. It seems like there is a fine community built around the

    I do have a few questions, and I'd sure appreciate it if anyone had
    any insights.

    1) Water: I've read some stories of water leaking into the cabin (due
    to disconnected drainage tubes?) and other places it is not supposed
    to be in the aircraft. How concerned should I be about this?

    2) Winterization: I live in New York City, and will likely not be
    able to hanger the aircraft, at least for a few months. I've read
    some postings here that make it seem that cold-starting the aircraft
    is a relatively painless operation. Is this true, and, if so, what
    long-term effect does it have on the engine life? Do roadside jumping
    kits work without damaging the aircraft (c.f.,

    3) Does anyone know of any IFR-certified C23's for sale in the North
    East? I live in New York City and fly from CDW.

    4) Does anyone know of any FBOs that rent musketeers in this area? I
    have yet to actually fly in this aircraft.

    Thanks in advance for your help.

    Chris Clearfield

  2. #2

    First-time buyer

    Good morning,
    I can respond to the first two of your questions. As to water leaking in, it
    shouldn't be a problem especially if you make sure the drainage tubes are
    connected. As far as starting, a Lycoming is a Lycoming regardless of what
    aircraft it is in. The fuel injected models are much easier to cold start
    than the carburator versions although they are a bit more difficult to hot
    start. The use of the new flyweight starters make a major difference since
    they spin the engine significantly faster.

  3. #3
    I have posted this in several other Topics, but I am also including it here to widen the potential audience. Fuel injected Lycomings are as easy to start hot as they are cold. There are three key points to a quick hot start:

    - Any start after the first start of the day is a 'hot start', unless ambient temps are under about 45 degrees, AND at least eight to ten hours have passed. In warmer weather, any start within about 18 hours of shut-down is a 'hot start'. These are somewhat arbitrary numbers, but you get the idea. The engine has to be 100% stone-cold, AND have sat there for almost the equivalent of 'overnight', before it becomes a 'cold start'. If in doubt, use the hot-start technique first.

    - You get all the cockpit duties done before the starting attempt, including the 'Clear!' shouted out the window. In other words, no pauses once you begin the start sequence.

    - You leave the Mixture in lean shut-off, crack the Throttle to the idle-start position, and immediately turn the key to Start. There will be sufficient fuel and vapor in the system to make the engine 'fire'. Even though it was shut down on the mixture control at the Servo, the post shut-down heat soak expansion in the fuel lines will have moved a small amount of fuel out of the servo into the lines. Just enough to fire the engine.

    - Just as soon as the engine first fires, you briskly move the Mixture to full rich. If you are not fast enough at this, the engine will starve for fuel and fade out. If it does, don't move anything (leave the Mixture where you moved it to full rich); just immediately re-crank. The engine will quickly re-start.

    All the other approaches to a fuel-injected hot start basically rely on flooding the engine, then using the flooded engine starting procedure. That is the 'Mixture full lean, throttle wide open, sit a few minutes, and crank' technique; then quickly retard the throttle when it fires. This adds to wear and tear, and increases the fire risk from the excess fuel.

    You can easily refine your starting technique (FI or Carbureted) by using an external observer during some of your starts, when it is convenient. They should see virtually no smoke. Crackling sounds and spits prior to starting imply a lean start. Any signs of gray or brown smoke imply a slightly rich start. Puffs of black smoke imply a very rich start.

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