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Thread: Considering buying a Sierra. What to look for and to look o

  1. #1

    Considering buying a Sierra. What to look for and to look o

    Sean,

    I just bought a B24R Sierra, and I have had my Musketeer (200Hp) for
    about 5 years. Yep, right now I own two machines, so if you want a
    200Hp Musketeer I am your guy

    The Sierra and the Musketeer are basically the same machine in my case.
    The engine is the same, the airframe is the same, heck, the POH is the
    same. My Sierra has 2 doors and a large baggage door (Musketeer has 1
    door and small baggage door), the Sierra has a CS Prop, (Fixed on Mouse)
    and the Sierra has the retract.

    Costs, well, at this point, I anticipate about same operating costs as
    to the Mouse, a little LOWER at annual is what we are expecting. (Lower
    is due to the fact that I can remove the cowling and interior in the
    Sierra in about 20 mins, it takes 2 hrs on the Mouse. Swinging the gear
    takes about 30 mins, and access points in the Sierra are a little easier
    than the Mouse, so far we are about 90 mins less at annual)

    Mods, not too much that I am aware of. There is a company offering
    Vortex generators for about $1500, and I have heard great things about
    these, although neither bird has one installed.

    As you can see, I am a big Beech fan. I am not a small guy, 6'1". 230,
    so the interior room is important to me. The speed is secondary, but on
    Wed, I took the Mouse for a 1 hr flight to do some work on it. I was
    124kts going out and 133Kts coming back. That is fine by me!

    If you have any questions at all, send me an email and I will help you
    out the best I can.
    --
    Braden Messenger,
    Director - International Region
    Beech Aero Club

    -----Original Message-----
    I have a Cessna 152 that I fly and keep on leaseback. Being in
    Daytona Beach with Embry Riddle, the leaseback actually is making me
    money.

    I'm looking for a complex single that won't kill me on costs per/hr.
    I've narrowed it down to three, The Cessna 172RG, Piper Arrow, and
    Beech C24R Sierra.
    I'm really leaning toward the Sierra mainly for the interior room. And
    I prefer low wings... Of the three I've only flown the 172RG.

    Can anyone tell me about the operational costs, maintenance gotchas,
    any available speed mods, and items to make sure are covered on the
    pre-purchase inspection?

    Thanks,
    Sean

  2. #2

    Considering buying a Sierra. What to look for and to look o

    >I'm looking for a complex single that won't kill me on costs per/hr.
    >I've narrowed it down to three, The Cessna 172RG, Piper Arrow, and
    >Beech C24R Sierra. I'm really leaning toward the Sierra mainly for the
    >interior room.

    >Can anyone tell me about the operational costs, maintenance gotchas,
    >any available speed mods, and items to make sure are covered on the
    >pre-purchase inspection?

    Operational costs: 12 gph, about twice what you are used to on the
    C-152. At today's gas prices (and the expected prices this summer) one has
    to consider how much flying budget is shot on fuel, as opposed to other
    costs of ownership.

    C/S props are more expensive to maintain and OH. There are ADs that have
    to be done, some on calendar basis, even if you don't fly it.

    Insurance isn't an "operational cost", but it sure can be a factor. Most
    underwriters are going to have a problem with someone stepping out of a
    C-152 into a complex single. Expect what seem like Draconian requirements
    for Time in Type, and possibly even an Instrument Rating, before they will
    turn you loose and give you a rate that isn't 5 times what you pay in the
    C-152.

    Retract gear is widely known to be problematic from a maintenance and
    operation standpoint. Retracts on a 30-40 year old plane are even MORE so.
    I'll bet the proverbial Steak Dinner that the randomly selected retract
    single has improperly rigged gear and/or at least 1 gear-up/prop-strike
    incident in its history. Choose VERY wisely, and have a specialty shop
    inspect and adjust the gear. The fact that some shade-tree mechanic gets
    it up on jacks and manages to swing the gear successfully does NOT mean it
    is working as the manufacturer intended.

    I can't speak to all the models out there, but I've worked on retract
    Cessna singles, Arrows and Sierras, and they ALL have their share of
    gottchas in the LG department. Again, much of it from improper or lacking
    maintenance, some of it from damage history.

    A pre-purchase inspection is for the purpose of confirming the plane is in
    the stated condition that was used as the basis for price negotiation. It
    should be among the most exhaustive inspections done to the plane. You can
    look at my Bondline article about PPI and see some tips about purchasing an
    aircraft.

    www.bondline.org It is a Grumman owners site, but the basic inspection
    information is generic. Look under Maintenance > Servicing > Inspection

    As for "Speed Mods", when used in the same sentence as Sierra, that doesn't
    make any sense. The Sierra is the slowest of the 200 HP singles. Its good
    qualities are its spacious cabin and nice flying characteristics, NOT in
    speed. So if you have desires for speed, you can choose something else, as
    there is NO mod available that will bring a Sierra's stately 130 knot
    performance in line with the other 200 HP singles.

    If you want speed, you want a Mooney. Even 180 HP Mooneys outrun Sierras.

    Of course you want to buy a jar of Vaseline to ease getting in and out of
    the Mooney. <G>

    Bob Steward, A&P IA
    Birmingham, AL



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  3. #3

    Considering buying a Sierra. What to look for and to look o

    Sean,

    Here are some other numbers:

    My FBO has a Sierra on the line which you can rent for
    $ 120.00 per hour wet. Basic IFR, all old avionics.
    They need a retract because they are PAR 141.

    I am still to find anybody in Northern California who
    can make money from a lease back agreement IF you as
    the owner keep and hold the appropriate insurance
    coverage ( about 6K dollars per year if you put the
    a/c on the line here in California) , you pay the
    property tax and you take care of all the maintenance
    as you should be.

    1/ The weather is preventing us from flying all year
    around ( unbelievable but true)
    2/ Maintenance costs an arm oh yes AND a leg - count
    80+ bucks per hour.
    3/ Fuel is now about 4.40 per gallon.
    4/ Then of course - should you make money - you are
    paying Uncle Sam on your profit.
    5/ Tie down is about 120 bucks per month here in the
    Bay.
    For your information : if you upgrade your avionics -
    ie you make your aircraft safer etc etc you get some
    more thanks from the taxman as they will now increase
    your property tax as the value of the a/c has
    increased. Talking about rip-off.

    I am seeing FBO's buy old clapped out 172's for 30K or
    less and put them back together perhaps with a refab
    engine if needed and run those on 100 hr maintenance
    cycle..

    Happy to hear you can make money in Florida.

    Cheers

    HarryR

    --- "Sean C." <stogiec@gmail.com> wrote:

    > I have a Cessna 152 that I fly and keep on
    > leaseback. Being in
    > Daytona Beach with Embry Riddle, the leaseback
    > actually is making me
    > money.
    >
    > I'm looking for a complex single that won't kill me
    > on costs per/hr.
    > I've narrowed it down to three, The Cessna 172RG,
    > Piper Arrow, and
    > Beech C24R Sierra.
    > I'm really leaning toward the Sierra mainly for the
    > interior room. And
    > I prefer low wings... Of the three I've only flown
    > the 172RG.
    >
    > Can anyone tell me about the operational costs,
    > maintenance gotchas,
    > any available speed mods, and items to make sure are
    > covered on the
    > pre-purchase inspection?
    >
    > Thanks,
    >
    > Sean
    >
    >


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