Cessna 414/421 New Job Help

Floyd94

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Hey guys, I need some help as someone I know is about to purchase a cessna 414/421 and wants me to fly it for him. The pay is good (40K), the only problem is I dont have a clue as to how to fly a turbo piston engine aircraft. Will the insurance company require that I go through some type of trainning? All of the flying will be part 91. Also did most of you 421/414 drivers out there go through some sort of formal training before you actually got your jobs? I am currently on furlough with a 121 express carrier and will probably only end up flying for him for about 6 months. This being said would it be worth him to send me through trainning? He knows I will be going back soon but still wants me to help him get things started. Back to the pay, should I negotiate a higher pay with days off as I think he will need me on call 24/7. What are some of the work rules that you 421/414 drivers have? Do you have holidays and weekends off? As you can tell this is a total new experience for me and any advice you might have would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
 
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Floyd94 said:
I think he will need me on call 24/7. What are some of the work rules that you 421/414 drivers have? Do you have holidays and weekends off?

Well if he will want to fly on weekends and Holidays I would venture a guess you will NOT have weekends and Holidays off...

I doubt you had Holidays and weekends off at Eagle... Aviation is not a 9-5 job, never has been and never will be... Airplanes fly 365 days a year and that means somewhere pilots are flying them... fact of life...

Some jobs fly more Holidays and weekends than other do, it all depends on the company and who you are flying... If he is planning on doing mostly personal trips, plan to fly a lot of weekends and holidays... if he is using the plane for 100% business, then I would guess your weekends and holidays will be mostly free...

$40k sounds fairly reasonable for a C-414 capt... Your location in the country could affect that... LA based would demand a higher salary than Podunk, Nebraska...

Training is pretty straight forward... The plane is easy to fly, you just have more levers than a turbo-prop and have to pay the engines more attention... Be careful as this series of Cessna's tend to be very tail heavy and not have a very good useful load... just because it has 6 seats in back does NOT mean you can carry 6 passengers... be careful...

Good Luck!
 

414Flyer

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Yeah I can vouch for the tail heavy part on the 414s...

Anyways it is not that hard a plane to fly really. But its not that fast either. You can usually expect 140-145 kias cruise at whatever altitude. Climb rate is pretty anemic. I fly out of airports that are usually around 6,500ft elevation, and I hope I never lose an engine on departure, when I have a nurse, EMT, patient, equipment and lots of gas.

Flap and gear speeds are high, compared to some other planes, which is nice. Keep an eye on CHT in summer take offs.

You will get more than I am making am in part 135 air ambulance, and probably more days off too. 40k salary for a 414 is not bad at all.
 

Floyd94

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OK let me clarify some things, first off, I don't mind working Holidays and weekends as I did at COEX and I do now as a CFII. However I did have down time 11/13 days off a month. The 24/7 thing seems awfully excessive to me. I just think there should be some kind of clause that allows some down time if in fact this is what he is going to want out of me. He hasn't necessarily said that he wants me available 24/7. It was a retorical question. Another question, do I even have to go to formal trainning? Can't somebody just check me out in it? One more question, How much fuel does it (421) burn per hour?

I know my wife would enjoy this schedule as I would probably be home more. 40k is much more than I was making at COEX and it would help pay the house mortgage and bills.
 
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bigD

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You may need some formal training. I have a good friend that owns a 414 with similar times to what you list, and his insurance company requires him to attend FlightSafety twice a year. But who knows - maybe you can get away with a checkout...
 

flyhi

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The 400 series Cessnas are fun to fly. I would bet the bank that you will have to go to school for initial training due to insurance requirements. This will probably be a five day school. If i were you, i would check with the insurance company to even see if they will insure you! You'd be surprised at what they want these days....a lot depends on how much your owner wants to carry on the policy for liability, etc.

good luck to you!!
 

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Floyd94 said:
Another question, do I even have to go to formal trainning? Can't somebody just check me out in it?

Being that you are really low time my guess is the insurance company is going to want to see formal training for you, probably SimCom or something of that sort...
 

flyhi

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Oh yeah, almost forgot, I think 40K is REALLY good for a 421/414 driver!

As far as the schedule, there is no telling, it varies so much in part 91 gigs. i know my schedule months in advance. i have never, ever had a pop-up trip. 5 days notice is the least i've had in 3 years! just have a heart-to-heart talk with the owner.

our 421C cruises at about 200 knots. Be careful when it's hot and high! Also, always, always, always, be prepared for an engine failure on takeoff. You really need to be prepared to do your procedures correctly and efficiently if you are going to continue climbing in that situation!

have fun!
flyhi
 

cvsfly

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Insurance is definetly going to be your stumbling block. These are high-performance, cabin class twins. With any kind of liability (like 5-10 million) they may require at least for open pilots something like 1500 - 2000 total with 300 - 500 twin and 10 - 25 in type. I am guessing trying to think back when I flew for an aircraft dealer delivering/demonstrating aircraft. This was more than 5 yrs ago, probably didn't carry much liability and fairly restrictive in the policy (ie not for personal/pax transport other than the owner/dealer himself) and recognizing the potentially more risky venture of operating many different types of aircraft for limited periods of time. You may want to find someone familar with these aircraft to fly with you on a temporary contract basis until you get the 10 - 25 hr in type to "seal" the deal. You definitely want to get some experienced pointers in operating these aircraft, especially the C-421 due its more tempermental engine maintenace issues. What will the owner be using the airplane for? Business, pleasure or both? That may determine what kind of schedule to expect. Is he a first time aircraft owner? Most owners like this, paying you a salary, will want you available when they want to go and if he is a decent/considerate/organized guy you may know your schedule a week or more in advance. If he is not, be prepared for 24/7 availability even though you most likely will have days and even weeks with no flying. Its just that you can't plan your schedule with any certainty. Sorry - that is small time corporate/personal flying for you. As for vacation benefits, he may offer, but will probably encourage you to take it when the plane is down for maintenance or when he is down from traveling. Make some friends who would be qualified for contract services, but who are not going to scam this job position from you.
 

cvsfly

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Fuel burn if I remember right is in the neighborhood of 40-45 gal total/hr maybe a little less if routinely operating in the low flight levels.
 

low&slow

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I was kinda wondering the same thing... They sound pretty cool though... wish I could fly one...

low&slow
 

tarp

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Yup, last time I checked the 421 out on the ramp had a "turbo charged recip engine". But if you want to start pumping in Jet-A like they did in the old days before they took the word turbo off the side of the plane, be my guest. Ah just watch out for the extremely short cruise range.
 

Floyd94

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Did I write turbine? Oops.

Anyway, wow, thanks for all the advice. I was worried that the insurance co. may not insure me. It will be interesting to see if this works out. I sure hope so, as I am getting tired of eating bread sandwiches on instructor pay...
 

John Hewlett

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Climb Rates

The climb rates on both 421's and 414 is not real great. With twin one would expect the climb rate to be good. well you can write that off with a 421. Not going to happen.

However a 421 is faster then a 414 for sure. When you taxi you may need to ride the brakes. The engines are geared and breaks are alot cheaper to overhaul then the engines.

Have fun with it though.

J.
 

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Re: Climb Rates

John Hewlett said:
When you taxi you may need to ride the brakes. The engines are geared and breaks are alot cheaper to overhaul then the engines.

Not sure what this means??? What other option do you have in a C-421 if you are taxiing too fast? I have yet to see a piston twin with Beta or Reverse...
 

HMR

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C414’s are good planes. They fly great, are stable in turbulence and haul a decent load for a piston twin (1900lbs or so with VG’s). The engines are the weak link. BE GENTLE. You’re asking a lot from those pistons everytime you takeoff and climb to altitude. Red line on the cylinders is 460 degrees F and we normally see temps in the 420’s on our stock 414. During the summer our rate of climb is limited to 500fpm or less due to cylinder head temp. We usually fly between 16-20,000’ but the engines are happier down around 12,000. As far as insurance, my provider (Airsure) wanted 1,000TT, 250 Multi and 25 in type with a qualified 414 instructor. Flight Safety is mandatory.

BTW, 40K is great pay for a low time piston twin pilot.

GOOD LUCK!
HMR
 
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