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Looking for info on Planemasters at KDPA

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Well-known member
Apr 23, 2002
I have an interview at Planemasters this coming Wednesday. Any info on pay, routes, schedules, etc. would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!

yeah i'll help you out. I had a friend worked for them in kansas flying the caravan as a UPS feed. heres his deal

30 grand salary flying a caravan from hays ks to wichita. 1.7 hrs per day, 5 days a week. that equals a whole 35-40 hrs per month.

he would leave hays at 6pm, stay in wichita all night, leaving wichita at 7am back to hays. great bend and salina were less time than that, averaging 1.2 hrs per day. No multi time, and no future prospects of getting any. Single engine turbine doenst count for a whole lot to move on with. Of course they told him that they had kingairs and he would fly those in 6 months, but soon after he was hired they sold the kingairs.

he finally was fired when he refused to fly that caravan when it was 200-1/2 and severe icing, no ILS at his departure airport.

try to get a job flying multi pistons if you can. thats what I did, the caravan pilots are still flying caravans 2 years later. I got my 500 multi PIC and work for mesa. good luck
i dont know how much of what you said is true or not. my friend currently works there. he to went out to kansas to fly the caravan, did that for 4 months, and now is back up at dupage in the kingair. not to bad for some multi time???? the pay is excellant as well for someone going there instead of a regional. my friend loves it there, hes going to have a possibility to be in the jet soon. if you need any info about planemasters PM ILLINI . hes the one that works there. hopefully hell post a reply to your message.
its all true. they had several kingairs, i was under the idea they sold all of them. my friend who this happened to replaced the guy in the paragraph above. nayway, no chance to go from caravans to kingairs

Hello all,

I've been operating about 4 hangars down from Planemasters at DPA for almost 2 years - and I can tell you, the King Airs are still there. If you want N-numbers, if memory serves, N992C and N387GA. I see them flying almost every day.

Take care,
Hey what's up antney!

jetdriven, your information is slightly incorrect. I think I know the friend you are talking about that flew out of Hays, and he was not fired - he quit because he was actually living in Wichita and driving to Hays to start his run and that was wearing on him which I can understand. I don't know how he did it as long as he did. And unless it was down (which I don't think it was around the time he quit) Hays does have an ILS. If i'm thinking of a different pilot, I appologize. I didn't replace the Hays pilot, I flew the Great Bend route for four months before being brought back to DPA to start flying the King Airs (which we have 5 of). If you make it clear that you want to move into the charter side of the business, they are pretty good about keeping to their word as long as you do a good job in the van. Plan on flying the van for around 6 months first though - maybe less, I only did it for 4. I was never pushed into flying into unsafe conditions once while I was there. I even cancelled three times due to icing and freezing rain with no compaints. You are expected to get the job done if at all possible, but at the same time do not put yourself or the plane in any danger. The owner/president of the company actually told one of our pilots not to fly because there was freezing rain in the forcast and that it was only a few boxes and wasn't worth it. That says alot right there.

The info. you gave on the salary and flight times are correct. No, that's not alot of time and some may argue that single engine turbine time isn't worth that much, but this is the way I saw it: Did I wan't to fly the Caravan for a living... no, but if it meant that I would move into the King Air in a few months and then the jets a few months after that, then so be it. I wasn't flying the Caravan for the flight time, I was flying it because I wanted to get into some bigger and better equipment down the road. My work week started Monday night and ended Friday morning, so I almost had a four day weekend. Don't work on the major holidays, and we even had an apartment and car in Wichita that was paid for by Planemasters/UPS. The pay is pretty good considering what you do, and if that's not enough for you, you have the entire day to work a part time job or flight instruct at your base if you want to - Planemasters doesn't care as long as it doesn't interfere with getting the job done.

I've only been with the company since last November, and already i'm flying right seat in a King Air logging multi, turbine time with about 40% of it being PIC and I should be in the jet by the end of this year. I really can't complain and don't regret my decision to come to work for Planemasters at all. It's a great company, great moral, great equipment, great maintenance, no pressure to fly, and decent pay.

By the way, we are probably going to be needing a couple more pilots pretty soon due to new routes. PM me if you have any questions.

I hope this answered some of the questions about Planemasters for some people!
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the pilot quit because he refused to fly the caravan in severe icing. Its really moot, he quit because they wouldnt back down on making him fly it that day. "Cleared for the option: you could call it, they would have fired him anyway.
A mutual friend just landed a kingair C90 a few minuted before he was supposed to depart and he asked the kingair pilot how the icing was. he replied he was not going to fly in that stuff again! The C90 had about 3" of ice on it after he landed, and we all know a caravan does way worse in icing than a C90.
hays does have an ILS, but the glideslope was out of service as they were building a crosswind runway. No way to return to HYS if it got to be too much icing. I was flying a 1900D out of there at the time, so I can verify that.
also, i agree he was commuting and perhaps his heart wasnt in it.
their caravan was pretty well equipped and well maintained, and if you can still cross over to the Kingair after a few months, then go for it. the guy I knew there was telling me it was a dead-end job. good luck
I talked to the chief pilot and ops director at Planemasters about flying contract work on their Hawker 700. Pre 9/11. They seemed like good people. They offered 400 a day. With my job at NJA I wasn't very interested in flying right seat part 135. After 9/11 I didn't follow up on the job, because there were so many guys on the streets and I figured someone was gonna walk though their doors looking for work. Everyone that I talked to over there seemed pretty cool. I'm hoping that some furloughed pilot got in there and took that gig.
Also there is nothing wrong with part 135 freighter ops in a Cessna Caravan. Its a good stepping stone and quite frankly I would rather make 30 grand a year flying a caravan then flying a piston twin making 17grand. Besides Planemasters does have Kingairs and Jet Aircraft. There is room for growth.
Planemaster is a good company.

Hello All.
I have worked for Plamemasters for a little over a year and I could tell you from experience that its a great company to work for.
Jet driven with all due respect most of your information is incorrect.
to begin with flying the caravan. its a great airplane to fly and you do learn alot flying cargo single pilot no matter if its single or multi-engine, and also the Caravan does handle ice well as long as you don't abuse it and that is true with any other airplane out there.
talking about being forced to fly in bad weather or else(like so many freight companys out there) planemasters president is very safety oriented person and will never force you to fly into unsafe conditions,I have delayed several flights and cancelled few due to weather conditions and I have never got in trouble for doing so.
now regarding advancment in the company, ILLINI's info is more updated but in my case I got hired on the Caravan and six weeks later I started my training on the KingAirs,and right before I left for the airline I was about to upgrade to the jets.
The company has about 30-40 pilots and they are a great group of pilots they do make feel at ease.and menagement is not bad at all.
So skyKing1976 good luck on your interview and let us know how it goes.

if you have any Questions don't hesitate.
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to begin with flying the caravan. its a great airplane to fly and you do learn alot flying cargo single pilot no matter if its single or multi-engine, and also the Caravan does handle ice well as long as you don't abuse it and that is true with any other airplane out there.

I urge you to check the NTSB Acident briefs about that. The Cessna Caravan has one of the worst accident records involving ice. they have several AD's which include VG's on the horizontal Stab and Ice boots for the front of the pod. Too much unprotected area and not enough power... Try flying a PA31-350 in ice and then try it in a Caravan. Not likely!

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