MU-2 - One Year Report

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by Ted DuPuis, Jan 1, 2019.

  1. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Line Up and Wait

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    Reasonable facsimile
    They have a Falcon 10 as well, they have owned it for at least 15 years now. Sold one long body a few years ago, it stayed in MHT till it was replaced by a Citation. I actually don't remember N302X, that might have been before my time, or I have a bad memory.

    It is going to be interesting to see what the next few years bring for their department, no one working there is getting any younger....
     
  2. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Ahh, KC MU-2s. Now I know who you're talking about. I used to frequent MHT a lot in the Aztec days.
     
  3. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Line Up and Wait

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    What was the n-number on the Aztec?
     
  4. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Good old N6927Y. You would've seen me with a plane full of dogs. Manchester Animal Shelter would take over Wiggins when I showed up.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Line Up and Wait

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    I think that was after I stopped working there, but I do remember hearing about the dog flights.
     
  6. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    It's a funny small aviation world. One of the guys who worked the line there when I was first flying into MHT then got a job flew those KC MU-2s, put about 1k hours on them as I recall. I stopped flying into MHT on dog flights after the relationship between Manchester Animal Shelter and the senders who I was normally working with dried up (that happens).

    Fast forward to a couple months ago when my wife started interviewing at the company that she's now starting to work for flying jets. Danos, who flew the Aztec with me on dog flights regularly (including to MHT) and did a few solo trips himself, said to me "I've got a friend who flies for those guys, I flew with him in the Dash 8." So he puts my wife and this friend of his in touch.

    They have a chat on the phone, the MU-2 comes up, the dog flights come up.

    Turns out this friend was the same line guy who I knew from the early days of flying into MHT. He had started flying the MU-2s by the time Danos started flying into MHT with me, so they never met. They then met flying the Dash 8 at the same regional they were flying for, and now he and my wife are coworkers, although flying different equipment so they'll never fly together unless one of them changes.

    Small world.
     
  7. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Line Up and Wait

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    I know exactly who you are talking about. Very small world indeed.
     
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  8. timwinters

    timwinters Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    That's been my problem too now that I'm single again and dating.

    ummmm...no comment
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2019
  9. N53KL

    N53KL Pre-takeoff checklist

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    To put a time stamp on this, I knew Bill during 1974-75. As for his baby, N302X was a 1968 Mu2B. When the Garrett TPE331-10 came out he hug two on 302X. One of the fastest short bodies flying at the time (before the Solitaire). One day he came back from a trip at around 3PM and another trip popped up. He loved it and asked me if I wanted to go along right seat. Went to Detroit, picked up some folks and flew them back. He was smiling all the time and so was I for the experience of working the radios and being his copilot for that trip. Who knew years later I would be flying a Mits for a company.....
     

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  10. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    I can say that the smile isn't wiped off my face at all. Even with the little -1s I love the thing and it keeps me smiling whenever I'm flying it. I rarely kick on the autopilot, I just enjoy hand flying it too much.
     
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  11. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Meh... I'm an "all the flaps, all the time" guy, and even those small underpowered trainers can do OK because you have power available essentially instantaneously, and you can retract the flaps at least a notch with a negligible effect on stall speed.

    But, with Ted's description, I'd do what he does. A plane that sounds like it's already behind the power curve when you can finally add the last notch, that has gigantic flaps (IIRC) that go to 40º and turbines... And that notch of flaps requires an application of power... Yeah, full flaps there doesn't sound fun.

    She's a good one for sure!

    But what were the limitations of the 310 WRT Kansas? My partner and I are starting to talk about twins, and the 310 seems to meet our desires pretty well (with the exception of no back door) so I'm curious. Thanks!
     
  12. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    The thing to remember is that Mitsubishi designed this plane to be a highly capable aircraft that could do both short field/slow as well as high and fast, while also being efficient. That's why you have the 40 degree fowler flaps (which necessitated spoilers instead of ailerons), etc.

    If you use 40 degree flaps, you can do a couple of things. You can produce a glide ratio that rivals autorotation in a helicopter (or the Aztec). You can also have a stall speed that's very slow, in the 60-70 KIAS range. Lots of capability there. However there's risk that goes with using that capability and if you don't need to use that capability on a particular landing, there's no point in taking the negatives that go with it (other than for training purposes). Hence why I use flaps 40 selectively.

    The man who flew this plane for 25 years for an owner flew it out of a 3200 ft strip. He used flaps 40 for every landing but justifiably so given their choice of runway. For me? Nah.

    The 310 is not limited at all WRT Kansas. It's a fantastic choice for anything east of Denver. However any naturally aspirated plane runs into limitations once you start going around those big rocks, at least if you plan on doing so on any sort of schedule (which, as you know, is exactly what I do). This pushed us towards something pressurized, which meant adding turbos. Additionally, the size of the 310 was really too small for the missions that the groups I work with were asking for, so we needed a cabin upgrade, too.

    A short nose 310 is a good all around choice. Low cost of entry, 470s are economical, etc. However in recent years the value of 310Rs has been going down significantly so there are some good deals there, and that gets you more baggage space and a bigger cabin. I can give you some more tips if you want.
     
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  13. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Yup, makes perfect sense, and thus is a good exception to my "all flaps, all the time" habits.

    I'd love to hear 'em. This is still just something that's far out on the horizon, but I've been perusing the for sale sites recently and the capability/price ratio on the 310 seems very attractive. We would both love something pressurized, but it does seem like the costs become astronomical quickly.
     
  14. N53KL

    N53KL Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I'm Sorry Ted. Didn't mean to hijack your post. I enjoyed my time flying the Mits and I am glad you are enjoying yours!
     
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  15. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    @GRG55 asked for an update on the MU-2 because the Cobra is too boring for him, so I figured I'd tack it on to here. At this point it's more of a 1.5-year report.

    The past 6 months I've decreased flying hours a bit vs. the first year. My wife's new job has her gone 50% of the time effectively (working 8 on 6 off) and we're still trying to figure out what the right level of work/life balance is. Or more like work/work/work/life when you figure that between the two of us we have 3 full-time jobs (the 2 that pay plus Cloud Nine). I've been flying about 1 trip a month and that seems to be work out well, especially as the kids get older and can start going.

    When I did my recurrent we also qualified my wife with her initial on the MU-2, so now we're both qualified to fly it. That's a nice thing as it makes her more involved and while I'm perfectly comfortable and capable of flying it single pilot, the older I get the more I like two-pilot ops.

    A few months ago it came due for the 100/200 hour (annual) inspections and the 3-year/600 hour (flaps) inspection. The latter was due to years not hours. While there I also had them upgrade the 530 to a 530W and replace the GTX 330 with a GTX 345, making the plane ADS-B out compliant with ADS-B In as well. Because the Sandel doesn't have the software update to support LPV approaches, I'm still stuck to LNAV-only on GPS. That's a bit annoying but the plan will be eventually to go glass in the plane.

    When they did the inspection they found so little they didn't even bother to send me a discrepancies list. The only "big" item they found was a nut for the flaps, which was $2000. Yeah, I don't get why it costs that much either, but given that it was the only 4-figure discrepancy (most of the others were in the 2 to low 3-figure range) I really can't complain on this sort of a plane.

    Really my only plans relating to the plane involve avionics, which will be dependent on the budget. Donations haven't been good enough to support any of the panel upgrades that I'd like for improved capability and safety, but since it's ADS-B compliant I have nothing that I need to do for the foreseeable future other than routine inspections and general maintenance. I have no airframe related upgrades I'm planning on, when it comes time to do the props I'll just overhaul/IRAN the ones I have.