Anybody want to buy a nice 310?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by James_Dean, Jan 3, 2016.

  1. James_Dean

    James_Dean Pattern Altitude

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    I made an offer on a conquest today. :goofy::yes::rofl:

    Haven't decided what I'm going to do with my 310 yet, but if anyone is interested send me a pm for specs.

    I will post updates on the new ride as things go down.


    Eggman
     

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  2. Everskyward

    Everskyward Administrator Management Council Member

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    Very cool! :thumbsup:
     
  3. paflyer

    paflyer Final Approach

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    I love the smell of Jet-A in the morning.
     
  4. Twin_Flyer

    Twin_Flyer Cleared for Takeoff

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    :yikes:Didn't you just redo the panel in your bird? Congrats...:yes: Keep us posted on your progress...
     
  5. James_Dean

    James_Dean Pattern Altitude

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    yeah..... things got...... accelerated. I flew +40 hours in December. That and sending xmas gifts fedex to make weight, the kids sucking oxygen, and the wife feeling cramped with four kids in back. My three year plan got more than cut in half.

    I put over about 330 hours on the plane and got myself comfortable and insurable for this jump to an oil burner.


    I'm starting a new fractional ownership program. As in, you buy it for a fraction of what I've got in it. :dunno:
     
  6. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach

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    Congratulations!

    I have always thought the Conquest is the ultimate propeller ride (insert sound of gasping from TBM owners here). Something for the rest of us personal piston twin drivers to aspire to...after we win a lottery or the rich aunt dies. :lol:
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2016
  7. James_Dean

    James_Dean Pattern Altitude

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    TBM doesn't have the cabin I need. Didn't want to spend $3mm on a pilatus. Inspection programs on the King Airs are a little burdensome for 200 hours a year in my opinion. I thought about the commanders and Mits, but the insurance was quite a bit more onerous. The Cheyennes seem to be tough to find a good one and I don't like the cabin as much as the Cessna. The last factor was the local 135 outfit runs a few conquests and manages another for a local company so the commonality benefit was very strong.
     
  8. Mason

    Mason Pattern Altitude

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    Maybe Henning will make you an offer.

    He knows now where the gear handle is...
     
  9. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    I've flown this 310 and it's an excellent bird for anyone interested in a very nice 310.
     
  10. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Congrats,good luck on the sale of the 310
     
  11. Corpsmaide

    Corpsmaide Cleared for Takeoff

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    Could you give it to me as a gift? Figured I'd ask
     
  12. Sam D

    Sam D Cleared for Takeoff

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    Congratulations!
     
  13. brian]

    brian] Cleared for Takeoff

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    Dang - booted as well...

    I've seen some nice twins sell over the past few months - just wish I was ready ... just not there (skill wise) yet.
     
  14. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    was that a......Bonanza back there?.....whatda want for that? :D
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2016
  15. Challenged

    Challenged Cleared for Takeoff

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    Congrats. I've been looking at twins quite a bit lately, but with my allotted allocation of money for aviation, I'm probably more of a bottom of the barrel twin guy.
     
  16. EppyGA

    EppyGA Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Congratulations!!

    We have a flying club that is 501(c)(3) cough-cough :D
     
  17. Somedudeintn

    Somedudeintn Cleared for Takeoff

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    And if this gets added to the club then sign me up too!!!
     
  18. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

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    Have fun in the new plane!
     
  19. jimmyjack

    jimmyjack Ejection Handle Pulled

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    it's none of my business, but I'm still asking - what do you do for a living?
     
  20. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    :dunno:
     
  21. timwinters

    timwinters Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Yeah, I've been looking for a "that's a lot of f****** eggs" meme all day but have yet to find one that's adequately (in)appropriate!

    :goofy:
     
  22. SkyDog58

    SkyDog58 Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Is raising chickens farming or ranching? :dunno:
     
  23. James_Dean

    James_Dean Pattern Altitude

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    I work for my wife and five kids. :yes: For second job, as Ted said, I'm a 39 year old chicken farmer.;)

    I'm part owner of and work as the COO for a group of companies that produce eggs for retail and industrial purposes. Collectively we are the second or third largest such company in the US and produce about 10% of the national egg supply.

    While I have certainly shoveled **** and carried pails of feed in my career, I don't personally do much of that any more. My main task these days is to find great people, give them a vision, and get the hell out of the way.

    We are a business run by a group of families and certainly didn't start out this big. We've kind of specialized in finding troubled and inefficient operations and turning them around.

    We have operations in several states and customers across the nation which is what was/is driving my travel schedule. I did several years on the airlines earning status one painful segment at a time. Many years doing over 150 segments and it was killing me. About two years ago it dawned on me that I did in fact have a pilots certificate and perhaps it was time to put it to better use. If I was going to get myself from place to place on demand I figured I needed a FIKI twin with a pretty good set of situational awareness tools and some good training. Ted talked me into a 310 16 months and 300+ hours ago. It has been awesome.
     
  24. SmashTime

    SmashTime Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Can you perhaps give us twin hopefuls a peak at the owning/operating costs of your beautiful 310?
     
  25. James_Dean

    James_Dean Pattern Altitude

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  26. Seanaldinho

    Seanaldinho Pattern Altitude

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    Upgrading airplanes is always a good problem to have!
     
  27. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach

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    My reasons for biting the bullet and moving up to a FIKI twin are somewhat similar. My expectation was that I could actually use it as serious transportation to get places, and that has proved to be the case - it is more versatile and flies far more hours annually than any of the singles I owned before. I can't remember how many times I judged the single marginal for forecast conditions and found myself on an airline while my expensive airplane(s) remained warm and dry back in the hangar. I despise the airlines and will do just about anything that is not unsafe to avoid them, unless I have to cross an ocean.

    For anyone thinking about a twin the economics aren't as bad as they might seem at first blush - light twins sell for a measurable discount to comparable (vintage, equipment and engine time) high performance singles - one can buy a lot of avgas for the difference. I don't use the boots to look for trouble but they can sure help get you out with less blood pressure rise. And I most often load the airplane like its a single, keeping what I judge a prudent safety margin below gross (mine doesn't fly as fast as a 310 but can lift a lot and go a long way between stops - sometimes more than I am capable of at my advanced age). :rolleyes: And yes, I am doing the Controller-porn thing looking at pressurized Cessnas now. The Finance Minister (the wife I work for) is doing her best to curb my enthusiasm...:dunno:
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2016
  28. James_Dean

    James_Dean Pattern Altitude

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    I agree with this. My 310 has nearly 2000 lb useful load. I can take my family of seven and 150 lbs of bags to go 500 miles with one hour of reserves and still depart 500 lbs under gross. I really love departing solo with partial fuel on a cold winter day. +2000fpm and the deck angle is nuts.
     
  29. Scott@KTYR

    Scott@KTYR Pattern Altitude

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    Congrats on the Upgrade.
     
  30. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Glad to have been of service. :)
     
  31. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    If you want I'd be glad to talk to you about pressurized Twin Cessnas. Coming from an Aztec, you'll like the extra speed, and a cabin class is easier to get in and out of. However there is a ssignificant increase in $/mile.
     
  32. brian]

    brian] Cleared for Takeoff

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    Yea, sounds like Ted is a twin pusher ... talked to him at Gastons last year and restarted thoughts of getting a twin ...

    I'm well over 100 segments on the airlines each year. Just too afraid to add it up. (Marriott likes to send me a statement at the end of they year showing how many nights I've stayed with them - usually measured in months :( )


    Question: realistically what was your dispatch rate like. (Ok, I might be getting the words wrong.) That is: how often did you say -eew - too much for my skill level? Or did you have to cancel very much for maintenance reasons (even if it was something that just didn't "sound right")?
     
  33. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    I've spent most of the past 2000 hours operating non-pressurized piston twins from 100-500 hours per year.

    My dispatch rate is overall better than 90%. And if you figure delays of 1 day or 1 reschedule, better than 95%. More often there's a no-go due to concerns of not being able to get in at the destination, and a diversion being impractical. For example, diverting with a dog flight is a real hassle, much better to reschedule. So it's usually economic/practical.

    Looking back on my early days, there were some trips that I was being "overly cautious" on when I chose a no-go that today I would've done no question.

    If you have on-board radar, WX download (XM or ADS-B), and de-ice, you can usually get where you're going.
     
  34. Jim Rosenow

    Jim Rosenow Line Up and Wait

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    Is that a I or a II? My wife flew a corporate II till they bought the Citation in '99, and she absolutely adored it.

    Jim
     
  35. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach

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    I don't make my living from aviation and the primary reason I fly is because I really enjoy it. That means I am lucky to be in the situation where making a flight never feels like an obligation or burden.

    I use the plane about 50/50 for business and personal trips, and have a high degree of flexibility for go/no-go as the business trips are mostly visiting my remote operating locations, all of which have small airports nearby but no scheduled service, so the alternative is lots of driving. Re-scheduling because of weather isn't usually a problem; having said that, in the last 2 years I have only had to cancel two flights, and both were because of severe convective weather across a wide front blocking the route home. I will freely admit the plane is more capable than I am - it has an older weather radar and a stormscope, but too many cells makes it easy to decide to book a hotel and take my operating staff & the wives out for a beer and supper.

    I am fastidious about maintenance, but that is no different from the singles I used to own. Anything that needs attention gets it - I want the airplane to be available, ready to go and safe to fly as much as possible. I am also very hands-on with my mechanic so I know the systems & mechanicals in detail (he prefers that kind of owner, to my good fortune). It also means that most of the maintenance items are brought to his attention by me instead of the other way around, as he knows I am looking over the plane regularly and carefully, instead of letting things pile up for him to find at annual.

    The one thing that has changed with owning a twin, and has added to the cost over a single, is that I tend to "do both sides". Had an ignition harness problem on one engine and had to replace it with a new one. The other engine harness tested fine, but as it is the same age as the one that failed the other engine is going to get a new harness at annual. Some say "don't fix it if it ain't broke", but I won't risk being stranded because I failed to deal pre-emptively with a potential wear item.

    I have detailed listings of the costs, and if I find some time later I will try to do a similar post to some of the other pilots here of what it has cost me to own and maintain the plane for the past couple of years. The 310 is a bit more expensive, but also more capable than my bird.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2016
  36. James_Dean

    James_Dean Pattern Altitude

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    I can't recall that I ever had to scrub a flight for maintenance and was never AOG away from base. I did lose a vac pump on the way to a destination. I ended up finding a flying home on the day I had originally scheduled, but the weather was cavu. Now, having said that, I was somewhat fanatical about getting the plane in to address squawks. For example, I had a mag pulled to send for overhaul every other oil change so that I had the peace of mind that they were in good shape and that they were spaced apart by roughly 50 hours.
    I'd say that I had the plane in the shop every fourth flight to have something addressed. Almost all of it was proactive or preventive. It's also why my annual was "only" $4k. I just had them pull the fuel spiders for overhaul because I was starting to see some indications that there was a problem developing. That's going to be a $600 expense, but might save a precautionary shut down or cause a flight to be scrubbed in the future. I think the point here is that these planes require an active manager to keep things going in the right direction. You let little things turn into big things and you're hurting your wallet and jeopardizing your safety.

    As far as mission planning and scrubbing flights is a little different story. I've done a departure with @ 200 and 1/2 but I knew that the tops were very low. I've tackled light/moderate icing, but have scrubbed flights when I didn't see "outs". I've picked my way through t-storms, but again relied heavily on having outs and "failsafe" conditions that if they weren't met by a certain point in the flight I knew I was diverting to my alternate. I have certainly had to cancel flights, but it hasn't been many. I won't do IMC with embedded. I won't do forecast moderate or severe icing. I very cautious about any icing when there are limited escapes or the weather is low.

    I guess the best measure of the overall performance is that in the time I've owned her I've only had to buy two "last minute" airline tickets to get me where I had to be. Certainly 95%+.
     
  37. paflyer

    paflyer Final Approach

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    Symptoms? Are these only in injected engines?
     
  38. MotoFlier

    MotoFlier Line Up and Wait

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    I would appreciate you taking the time to do that write-up. I'm very actively shopping for Aztec/310's. The Aztec seems to be the best fit for my budget and mission.
    Ted (iflytwins) has been an absolutely invaluable resource through every step of this for me and I'm extremely grateful for all the time he has taken helping me:yes:.
    yes I did use this post as an excuse to tell everyone how awesome Ted is:rofl:
     
  39. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Having owned/operated both an Aztec and 310, I'd disagree that the 310 is more capable. It is faster, but the Aztec hauls more and does short fields better, plus handles ice way better. $/mile comes out to pretty much the same as the speed improvement offsets the extra hourly cost.
     
  40. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach

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    I am glad you posted this...perhaps I should have said the 310 is more capable in certain respects...maybe I was trying to be overly polite? :dunno: And thank you for your offer to talk to me about pressurized twins (more on that below) - the generous info exchange on this forum is incredible.

    Seems the Aztec is a seriously "underloved" airplane in the market. Maybe it's because it looks bulbous compared to the sexy, sleek Cessnas? Or maybe because its considered "old technology" with its visible steel tube frame?

    Regardless the Aztec has been an outstanding first twin for me; I can't say enough good things about it.

    I spent a lot of time researching various light twins and the Aztec repeatedly kept moving to the top of my assessment spreadsheet for capability (useful load, interior space, range), flying characteristics including single engine, durability/reliability (as one example, every second Seneca I checked out had a nose gear collapse in its history it seemed) and you can buy a lot of airplane for the $ in an Aztec. Note Ted's comment about ice - I heard the same from many other experienced professional pilots when I was researching and although the first couple of times I encountered modest icing in IMC the senses were tingling, the Aztec wing gives so much confidence I remain respectful of ice, but no longer overly concerned.

    I am 6'-4", 235 lbs and love the high useful load and generous interior, as do my passengers (1200 nm to OSH, or a last minute weekend flight to Reno for the air races, are now comfortable annual treks for the gang). I typically fly 9k to 12k ASL, using portable O2, higher when westbound to the coast. The comfort trade off for speed seems reasonable.

    Ted, I live east of the Continental Divide, but my wife and I both grew up on the west coast and we have a lot of family out there. The Aztec is a solid, reasonably well equipped IFR platform, but is naturally aspirated and the one shortfall that has me thinking of upgrading is single engine service ceiling over the rocks. Going west I always fly it light and pick my days and routing so I always have an out well above minimums. But I am now considering stepping up to a turbocharged twin. Pressurized would be nice, and the Finance Minister would prefer it when she is a passenger with me, but I am wary of the added cost of maintaining the pressure hull. :yikes: I note that you've been happy staying with unpressurized twins. I am probably going to shortly fire up the spreadsheet again to do some analysis in preparation for a possible decision later this year, and appreciate any advice and the future opportunity to ask questions.