Anyone with any Cessna 421 Experience?

HMR

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I just got offered a job flying a 421 for a local company. The plane is in great shape and well equipped. Problem is, I don't know a thing about geared engines. I hear they're a maintenance nightmare but fly great when they work. Any words of wisdom would be appreciated. I don't want to be grounded all the time for maintenance.
 

sydeseet

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You might try AOPA, they have a lot of info. about a lot of things. I just flew 414's and 402's so I don't have any time with a geared engine. However, I was always told that you treat it like most other turbo charged engines and avoid ham-fisting them EVER. A guy I used to fly with that had several thousand hours in 421's said he always made it to TBO because he never brought the throttles below 20'' until crossing the numbers. I know FSI offers training for 400 srs Cessna's in Dallas (I think) Have fun
 

Jiminmem

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As the above poster stated they run fine. Just need to go easy on add and reducing power. Keep the MP up until right over the numbers and a good eye on the CHTs. Inside they are quiet and very roomy.

Don't know if you'll be flying a B or a C model, even an A for that matter. The As and Bs fuel system can leave you scratching your head at times, while the C was nice and simple. All were fairly stable and pretty staright forward, just the low flap and gear speed on the earlier models could give you headaches and require plenty of planning ahead.
 

Skywalker

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I got about 400 hours when iI flew charter in them up until May of this year...everything people have said about taking it easy on power control movements are right on...little movements make big changes...you also want to be sure if it's cold out, to properly let the engines warm up because the turbos will compressor stall...you'll love the trailing-link landing gear because they make landings a whole lot smoother...any other specific questions, lemme know...
 

Jiminmem

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Hey Skywalker

You had trail linking gear, lucky bum. Only ones I ever flew were staright legged beasts. Had to really earn a good landing on those, forget about greasers. Can always tell if a plane is tough to land if they add trailing link to it later in life, especially after only a year on the C models. Fly safe
 

TwinTails

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Just treat em with love and tenderness. They are a little fussy but plan your descents and watch the overboost .
 

falcon20

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Plan your descent for no more than 1000 fpm and reduce your power no more than an inch every minute. This will keep you from having to replace cylinders all of the time. This method becomes extremely difficult when operating into/out of busy airports because the controllers thimk that you can jerk the power all around, try to work with them the best you can. I have P-Navajo and 421 exp, both geared.
 

falcon20

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Plan your descent for no more than 1000 fpm and reduce your power no more than an inch every minute. This will keep you from having to replace cylinders all of the time. This method becomes extremely difficult when operating into/out of busy airports because the controllers thimk that you can jerk the power all around, try to work with them the best you can. I have P-Navajo and 421 exp, both geared. Also try to get your boss to send you to school, less expensive than blowing a motor trying to practice single engine work.
 

Humblepilot

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421

What a great airplane, I have ohhhhhhhhhhh 600 hours or so. Got the engines to TBO. PM if you want any information. I think the key is having the right mechanic set the engines up. Also I agree with some of the comments on operating the airplane. I think Simcom/Pan Am is the place to go for insurance training.

Its a great bird, have fun.

Humble
 

Skywalker

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Yeah, trailing link gear is real nice...although it does spoil you if you make even the slightest thud...I flew 310's at the same time and made it hard for me to make greasers in those...
 

TurboS7

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All of the above. Just imagine that you are the engine with all those moving parts, everything nice and slow and easy.
 

B-J-J Fighter

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421

Run it in cruise at 31" MP and 1800 RPM on the props.

Its a VERY slow climber so I never did file higher than FL180 or 190. If you file for higher by the time you get there it will bew time to come down. When ATC gives you an initial descent DONT pull back the power, just point the nose down at about 1000 FPM. Thios will put you at the top of the yellow arc, but thats fine. Slowly reduce power redoce power around an inch ever 2000 ft or so.

I lost an engine in one in Ft Meyers right after rotation. The a/c would hardly climb at all. The left one was out. Made it back around for an uneventful lading. Fun truck top fly.
 

jetdriven

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use the gear and flaps (drag) to bring the airplane down instead of reducing power. The high gear and flaps 15 speed (182 kts?) on the later models are good for this. Also, bring the power and props back as soon as possible after takeoff, those big continentals run at 3300 RPM full power. its a beautiful quiet airplane
 

AWACoff

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I have never heard of turbos compressor stalling due to the engine being too cold. Exhaust gasses are always hot and the only thing that needs warming up is the oil for the center cartridge. Please explain what a cold engine has to do with the turbo.
Steve "a puzzled turbo car owner"
 

TurboS7

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The waste gate can be sluggish with cold oil which will cause the engine to be slow to spool up, as for a compressor stall that is a new one.
 

jetdriven

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new one for me too. I know that if you have cold oil in the wastegate it will cause the engine to surge and overboost.. Do a good warmup and slowly advance the power to avoid this. besides why would you bring the engines up to 3300 RPM when cold anyhow? 375 hp from only 520 cubes is asking a lot to begin with. There are several people out there who get TBO out of the GTSIO-520 engines no problem.
 

AWACoff

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On automotive applications such as the Mitsubishi eclipse turbo and mazda turbos, the wastegate is actuated by vacuum. Are aircraft turbos drastically different? I can't see how engine oil would have any business being near the wastegate with that area being hot enough to ignite the oil. Help! I've never flown a turbocharged airplane.
 

Kaman

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Hi Guys,
I've not flown the C-421, but have about 400 or so hours in the Turbo C-206. I've never heard of a "compressor stall" in a turbocharger, but reckon he is refering to surges when you open/close the throttle too quickly. I had to more or less learn myself how to treat a turbocharged engine, because my instruction/checkout consisted of a lift to 10000' with 4 jumpers and then a couple of laps in the pattern to a full-stop. Touch-and-goes were a BIG No-No at the airfield we flew out of. Just a beat-up 2500' foot dirt/rock strip tucked into the mountains.
Best advice with the turbo is to watch your CHT's, plan ahead and be as gentle as possible on the powerplant. If flown correctly it will make it to TBO no sweat. We had one guy that was 20-years old and didn't want to listen and cracked the case by overboosting on take-off. Now he flies for UAL! Not a dig on UAL pilots, just that this kid was a knucklehead at that time in his career!

Happy Holidays,
 

TurboS7

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On a TSIO or GTSIO the wastgate is controlled by oil pressure and an oil pressure servo. Using vacuum wouldn't work on aircraft applications due to the altitude and possibility of a leak. As for oil near the turbo's it has fire retardant hose on the out-side, but an many an oil leak has caused the potential for fire.
 

Mr Freeze

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Have fun in the 421. I flew 404s and 421s. Be very careful with engine cooling. I have always pulled the throttles back one inch every ( TWO ) minuits for cooling. Plan your decents at least 3 to1 out of altitude for decent because the 421 just wont slow down.

Leaning the mixtures: If your airplane has a GEM, ( Graphic Engine Monitor ) use it on the hottest (egt) cylinder setting. For climb, lean it to 50 degrees below peak and 75 for cruise however; never cruise above 1590 degrees or below 1520. On the take off roll the fuel flow indicators should be at least 210 lbs / bottom of the white arc for takeoff with the boost pumps on low. At a safe altitude (500' agl) turn your boost pumps off and pull throttles and props to the top of the green arc and lean to 150 to 170 lbs for climb pitching for 130 kias. The AFM states 120kts but by doing this will help keep your cylinders cool especially in summer. Always plan a hot start if less than 30 minuits on your stop.

Winter opps: Watch that tail in icing conditions especially in 402 414 and 421. That tail will stall. The 404 can handle about 30% more ice than the others. Just try to stay out of it. I hope I didnt get to carried away. P.S. you will notice oil leaks. Chances are its a Tac Generator at the back of the engine. Merry Christmas.
 
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