Cherokee 6 (260HP) Vs Bonanza A36 Which one is better?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by FloridaPilot, Jun 2, 2017.

  1. cowman

    cowman En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Yeah that's the thing.... if I had a $250-$300k budget and I needed mostly more space not necessarily a lot of useful load it seems like the A36 is clearly better. However if I have a $150k budget it seems like it might be difficult to get a good A36 for that but you could have a Six and accomplish the same thing just slower.
     
  2. BrianNC

    BrianNC En-Route

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    They can definitely get up to 1400 with tip tanks. A few even higher. Just depends on the year and how it's equipped. It's more likely in '70s and maybe early '80s planes.
     
  3. BrianNC

    BrianNC En-Route

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    Here you go. Here's one 1400 lbs. Found a few more over 1300.

    https://www.controller.com/listings/aircraft/for-sale/17356669/1981-beechcraft-a36tc-bonanza
     
  4. Scott Mitchell

    Scott Mitchell Filing Flight Plan

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    Apology for the Necro post, but I’m literally asking myself this exact question.

    I’m looking to buy in the next year or two after I rent for a while and regain my GA feel. I’ve mentally gone the gamut from 172 to 182, to M20J for economical speed, to the reality that I’m big and most of my family and friends are taller than most. Most 4 place a/c will barely be 3 since I’m 6’7” 300lbs. And I have an elderly mother and dogs and like to snowboard and camp etc. Those big doors in the back of both airplanes are appealing and of course the useful load.
    So let me start simple without going down the rabbit hole of all my options. I’m seeing on this thread that the cabin of the Piper 6 is significantly bigger than the A36, but when I look up the cabin width, I see the piper measuring 41”, and the Bo 42”. Another article showed the piper at 43” and plane&pilot shows it at 49” which would be significant.
    Which one is right?
    That tackles the broad shoulders, how about the legs?
     
  5. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

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    for whatever reason, be it the overall shape of the fuselage or the interior finish or the design of the seats the piper feels significantly larger

    But the overall quality and "niceness" of the Bonanza is superior.. and it's faster

    Depends what is important to you.. speed and quality and slight less comfort.. or.. a little slower but more comfort and more overall what feels like rugged durability

    everyone is different though, your best bet would be to try and at least sit in one and if you can fly a couple
     
  6. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Pattern Altitude

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    I have an F33A, and I have flown a Cherokee 6. If front seat room is important to you, get the Cherokee. It is significantly wider and taller than the Beech. I'm 6'3" and barely get by. I have a friend that is 6'7" and he does not have enough headroom in the Bonanza. You will probably have issues with the yoke hitting your thighs unless you get an A36 with the post-1985 panel redesign.

    My advice to you is find someone with either airplane near you, and sit in it. That will make the decision for you pretty quickly, I think.
     
  7. RussR

    RussR Pattern Altitude

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    I don’t think you’re going to have enough legroom in the PA-32. The seat doesn’t go back far enough. I’m 6’2” and have it at the far back position, and would still like another inch or two.
     
  8. Jim K

    Jim K Line Up and Wait PoA Supporter

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    You must have very long legs. I'm 6'4" and if I put the seat all the way back in my Lance, I can't get full rudder travel. I wear 34" inseam.

    @Scott Mitchell this thread is kind of apples and oranges. An A36 costs about 100k more than a comparable pa32, is smaller, and carries less. However it will be faster, more 'robust', and 'sexier'. As big as you are, comfort will be your biggest issue. Sit in both if you can. The bo feels much smaller. Even though high wings are silly looking, you should also look at the cessna 206/210.
     
  9. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Pattern Altitude

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    I wonder if it varies by model year, cause I had to actually pull my seat forward to reach the controls comfortably.
     
  10. Rgbeard

    Rgbeard Pattern Altitude

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  11. RussR

    RussR Pattern Altitude

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    That's interesting, because I don't have long legs. Only 33" inseam.

    I'm not sure how it could vary by model or year much, since it seems the rearward movement of the seat is restricted by the wing spar, which I thought was pretty much the same through the years. Maybe in the seat mounting design? My experience is with 1980's fixed-gear Saratogas and a 2007 retract Saratoga, same fit in both.
     
  12. Jim K

    Jim K Line Up and Wait PoA Supporter

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    Mines a 76 lance with forward facing seats. Ive read that the front seats hit the middle row seat backs in the club seat models. In mine the back of the front seat will literally touch the main spar.
     
  13. RussR

    RussR Pattern Altitude

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    These have all been with the club seats. I do know that with the front seats all the way back, the middle seats are unusable because the front seat backs push the middle seat backs over. Whether the front seat travel is limited because of the spar or because of the middle seats I'm no longer certain about after this conversation...

    I'll be in a 1980's model with club seats on Tuesday, will take a closer look and report back!
     
  14. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I own a share of a 1971 A36 with a IO550 upgrade and luggage extension. Its a sweet flying aircraft with straightforward systems. We have the club seats without the table. It is rare that all the seats are installed as most of the travel is only with 2-4 seats occupied. With the last row out, there is plenty of room for bags. I am 6'3" and the pilot seat is snug. Works better with a in-ear headset than a traditional.

    As for the merits of the various STCs to increase the weight carrying capacity of the aircraft: My prior aircraft was a A36TC with Osborne tips. Yes, through the magic of paperwork shuffling, the plane was legally allowed to carry 400lb more than what god and the Beech engineers intended, but that still doesn't increase the available power beyond the 300hp bolted to the nose. When using that capacity, there are allowances in the AFM supplement that one needs to adhere to. A full gross takeoff in a 300hp aircraft at 4000lbs requires skill, patience and a long runway. The tip-tanks also make the plane far less pleasant to fly, particularly when they are full. So, unless you really really need the additional payload and fuel carrying capacity for things like trips to the Caymans, I would try to stick with a version that doesn't have tips.
     
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  15. Racerx

    Racerx Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The pa-28 is 42" wide. The pa-32 is 49. Absolutely love shoulder room. My one gripe on the seats is at 5'11 Im not quite at the rear most detent I'm the seat, but the next one up is a little too close. I thought I remember reading somewhere that the 6 had the fuselage extension for the aft row of seats and baggage after the middle row. So picture 7" wider than a Pa-28 Cherokee with the middle row of seats exactly where they'd be in a 160 or 180. It'd be cruel and unusual punishment to have an adult in the middle row of seats if you're anything taller than 5'6. My sister who's 5'2 was in the right seat and I was in the middle row showing her foreflight in the air. I'm 5'11 and was happy it was a short flight.

    Now with that said, it's usually just me and dad flying so the rest is just space. The forward facing seats works out well in that scenario as opposed to club seating just because the seats are a nice place to leave stuff you might need in flight.
     
  16. N1120A

    N1120A Pattern Altitude

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    My partner on the Bonanza is 6'4" and has plenty of room.
     
  17. k9medic

    k9medic Pre-takeoff checklist

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    With very few exceptions, I have never flown my 6/260 at less than MGW on initial departure. 6 hours of fuel and an additional 996lbs of load is enough to convince me to lose 20 kts.
     
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  18. Racerx

    Racerx Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Most bladders can't last that long. But the useful sure is nice!
     
  19. k9medic

    k9medic Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Yep. I have a 2 hour butt or a 2hour bladder.

    I need the fuel reserves though so I can fly to the Bahamas without refueling


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  20. John Collins

    John Collins Pattern Altitude

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    The A36 is a great 4 adult airplane. If you need to haul more, go with the six. If flying quality and speed is important to you, go with the A36. The six is a truck, the A36 is a Mercedes. I disagree with the comment on construction, the A36 is much better construction than the six and will last.
     
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  21. N1120A

    N1120A Pattern Altitude

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    This is a great comparison. The Six is like a Tahoe - performance is OK, but the key is utility. The A36 is an S Class or 7 Series.

    One thing I'll say about the A36, or really any Bonanza, is their ability to operate economically is often pretty underrated. People mention Mooney all the time, but Bonanzas of all varieties really hold their own in the cost/speed equation. The big fuel tanks on most of them also makes a huge difference for those of us who can handle longer flights.
     
  22. tspear

    tspear Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    Having flown an Aerostar for about 300 hours, I always laugh at the expression that Bo is a sports car.
    Part of what makes the Bo so nice to fly, is how sloppy the and forgiving the airfoils are. Not as sloppy or forgiving as a Cessna 172, but still so sloppy it makes pilots "look good".
    If you want an auto analogy, the Bo flies closest to a big American sedan from the 70s, like a Chrysler Cordoba.

    Tim
     
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  23. N1120A

    N1120A Pattern Altitude

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    I don't agree with that. I own both a Tiger, which most who have flown them agree is pretty much the best handling light single ever, and a Bonanza (a 33, which most honest Bonanza pilots agree is the best handling of the 3 main types). The Tiger handles like a car designed by Colin Chapman. Direct, maneuverable, but still stable in the hands of someone who understands it. A Bonanza is like a solid German sedan, in part because of just how easy the airplane is to fly well.
     
  24. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Pattern Altitude

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    My F33A is the nicest flying airplane I've ever flown.
     
  25. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Well.....the 35 hasta be better. o_O
     
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  26. tspear

    tspear Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    Fine, a 1975 240D Benz.

    Tim

    Sent from my HD1907 using Tapatalk
     
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  27. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Much better than German crap. I have an M5 that we’ve spent more time under than in.
     
  28. OneCharlieTango

    OneCharlieTango Pre-takeoff checklist

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    If I were 6'7" and 300#, I'd be looking for two front doors, which neither the Cherokee 6 or the A36 has.
     
  29. CharlieD3

    CharlieD3 Cleared for Takeoff

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    What about a Sierra? Not as wide as the 6, but wider than the A36...I think. Cheaper to run than either. Slower. Runway hog. But an interesting option for some
     
  30. Tusayan

    Tusayan Pre-takeoff checklist

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    That reminds me of a 16 year kid boasting about his Ford Mustang. Try any of the following and reevaluate.

    Any RV
    Marchetti SF260
    Falco
    BO 209
    Chipmunk
    Pup & Bulldog
    Any Zlin
    Any Bücker
    And so on.

    Of those I think the RVs are most Chapman-esque.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2020 at 8:59 AM
  31. Jim K

    Jim K Line Up and Wait PoA Supporter

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    Were talking about 6 passenger traveling airplanes....you're straight and level 99% of the time, and the most extreme maneuver you make is the base to final turn. Cost, speed, comfort, payload, & efficiency.

    You guys are arguing extra vs pitts when the discussion is 737 vs a320.
     
  32. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    Yeah, but I've heard 121 guys wax poetic when talking about the handling of a B-757 ... :D
     
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  33. Jim K

    Jim K Line Up and Wait PoA Supporter

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    Or as Juan brown calls it: the muscle jet
     
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  34. Stephen Shore

    Stephen Shore Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Bonanza was designed for the official FAA pilot (and typical 1940's man) - 5'10" @ 150 lbs.

    I don't know if people were really that much smaller back in 1946 when the Bonanza was designed, but I can assure you that if for some reason Textron designed a new single engine piston in 2020 it would not be as narrow and low ceiling as the Bonanza.

    But nothing sounds better I can tell you that.