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  #1  
Unread 10-14-02, 04:56 PM
p25416 p25416 is offline
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Question Would you buy your Skymaster again?

I am looking at getting a small team to own/ use a Skymaster. I find nice ones for sale, but worry about not being able to get parts.

1) In general has this been a problem for you? Do you think it will be a problem in another 5 years?

2) Would you buy an older (60s) one that has been re-done, or a newer one that still needs work assuming pricing is about the same?

3) Is their a cutoff in terms of airframe total time that you would walk away or can these airframes go forever (in general.)

Thanks,

Kevin
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  #2  
Unread 10-14-02, 05:24 PM
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Ernie Martin Ernie Martin is offline
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1) No. No.

2) Hard to say. Depends on various factors.

3) At 5,000 hrs (less if the bird was used for certain applications) there's an AD on wing spars which suggests to me that it's desirable to be under that. But others might disagree.

Ernie
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  #3  
Unread 10-14-02, 07:17 PM
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WebMaster WebMaster is offline
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wing

mine has 7500 hrs. that means it hasn't been sitting around.
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  #4  
Unread 10-14-02, 07:26 PM
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WebMaster WebMaster is offline
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Actually,

The higher time Skymasters, if they have no problem with the wing, actually tend to have lower values. I suppose that's obvious. In the right circumstances you can get a very good plane for a very reasonable price. Do not let price guide you, however. Look at the quality of the aircraft, it's history, it's maintenance schedules and useage. There were some very expensive skymasters advertised not so long ago that hadn't been flown 100 hours total in 3 years. That certainly was a plane that had a potential problem.
Okay?
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  #5  
Unread 10-15-02, 02:14 AM
GMAs GMAs is offline
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Wink Depends on a lot of factors...

No I would not worry about parts for skymasters... or any airplane.. their are some flying still that date back to the wright brothers... smile...

If the plane has been well taken care of and their is little corrosion on the inside skin... of course they are all hangared.. smile... but, some are taken care of better than others.. and it doesn't depend on the age... more on the care... regular flown is better than sitting around.. as the vibration will help to keep the alu shake off the stuff that would otherwise make it go bad... flying is not bad treatment for a plane.. as it will fly thru rain and that will help keep the salts off and clean... and shuck the dirt off inside and between skins...kinda thing...

Have no fear.. just hire a good mechanic who knows what problems the bird can have...to servey it for you... G.M> GMAs..
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  #6  
Unread 10-16-02, 01:24 AM
SkyKing SkyKing is offline
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Lightbulb ...And the original question was?

The original question was, "Would you buy your Skymaster again?" And the answer to that question is YES. This is an airplane meant to last a lifetime. But let me qualify that by saying this: There is no other airplane in the marketplace so well engineered that can do all of the things that the Skymaster does. Of course, if wearing a cannula or a mask doesn't bother you and you need more than 5-seats, I guess a 310, a 401, 402, or higher 400 equipment would be nice, but again, the most bang for the buck and the mission capabilities of the Skymaster can NOT be beaten.

Our's is a 1977 P-Model. We were looking specifically for 1976 through 1980 because of the later refinements in the product, some structural, some cosmetic. BUT, any of the P-models from 1973 through the end of the production run, 1980, would be very fine machines to own. There's a few out there that have been neglected, but not many, as there is a sense of pride in ownership of this particular piece of unique centerline thrust equipment that I have not seen in other airplanes. And once you are bitten by the 337 bug... it never goes away.

SkyKing
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  #7  
Unread 10-16-02, 11:58 AM
p25416 p25416 is offline
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Smile More Detail

Guys,

What a great bunch of guys! Thanks for all the feedback. This aircraft has always appealed to the Engineer in me but Lordy, finding the right one with the right people is a challenge and certain pilots I have talked to steered me away from it...I have always come back though :-)

A couple points..

1) Plane and Pilot (October Issue) picked the 1964-1967 Skymasters as one of their 75 best budget buys under 60K, thus my interest in an older one.

2) Do you necessarily believe that just because an aircraft has only flown 100 hrs in three years it has problems? I have found nice ones in that category that the pilot(s) just don't have time to fly.....that is the whole reason they are selling.

3) I hate to categorize, but I'm almost to the point I won't buy from a dealer. I seem to get more sincere responses from owner/ sellers and I seem to know more (thanks to this website and other info) than they do about them...they just don't sell that many.

4) FYI - I found a web site that tries to hook up pilots trying to partner, it looks legit and is free right now..

http://www.aircraftpartnership.com/About.asp

5) What are you guys getting charged for overhauls? I am finding aircraft at about 1500 hrs per engine and feel obliged to calculate in an overall in the purchase price although I know that they can go longer than this.

6) Finally, do you know of any owners looking for partners or heck just owners that love and can talk about the breed here in Arizona?

6) Nice work on the web site Mr. Mckenzie. Thanks again for the help gang, you have been great.

Kevin R.
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  #8  
Unread 10-16-02, 02:37 PM
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Ernie Martin Ernie Martin is offline
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A plane with low hours requires MUCH CLOSER attention regarding pre-purchase audit (www.skymaster.org.uk has a whole section on pre-purchase; just click on "Archive Specials #1 Purchasing Info").

I agree with Skyking that there is a "sense of pride in ownership of this particular piece of unique centerline thrust equipment" which leads many owners to super-care for their planes. BUT, for those who chose it because it's the cheapest twin around, you often find that the owner also skimped on maintenance, so many Skymasters are in very poor shape, with bad maintenance and worse records. So be very selective. I've bought from BOTH extremes: first a super-beat-up-with-no-records aircraft (which I picked up for a song after exhaustive research to re-create the lost records, and then spent lots of money fixing) and recently a cream-puff.

Engine overhauls range between $10K and $20K. Before others jump in to say my $10K figure is way too low, let me add some caveats. If an engine has had most of its accesories (alternator, starter, fuel pump, etc.) overhauled within the past few years (and some like magnetos probably needed overhaul to meet ADs) and you can find a shop to do the bare engine and it doesn't need a VAR crankshaft, then it can be done (I've done it -- for even less than $10K).

Good luck.
Ernie
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  #9  
Unread 10-16-02, 03:23 PM
Keven
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Not another Kevin!!!

At least I spell my name oddly enough to be distinguished!

Seriously, great to have you. I got a 1966 337A model for an extremely reasonable price about a year and a half ago. But it wasn't without doing a number of exhaustive searches, and having the patience and discipline not to buy one which didn't pass an A&P's prepurchase inspection threshold minimums. I spent about $700 in prepurchase inspections (with 3 different A&Ps in different parts of the country) and it was probably the best $700 I spent in my search. If the mechanic says it has a bunch of problems and hints of corrosion, he's probably not kidding Listen to him!

I tried to go through the "broker" route, but found that they priced the birds out of the market once they put their mark up on the price. So I ended up doing the leg work myself, which is probably a good exercise anyway.

My plane also had only flown 100 hours in the past 5 years, which was one of my biggest concerns (seller lost his medical and kept trying to get another one). However, the maintenance records were so meticulous and the prepurchase inspection came back so strong that I took a chance and it has paid off pretty well. The first annual was only a few months after my purchase, and I made sure it was pretty detailed. Be cautious of recent low time use, but don't let it be the final decision criterion.

Concerning partners, I considered it at first, but couldn't get anyone really interested in my neck of the woods because it is not a well-liked bird around here. People wanted to buy into a "real twin" not an ugly, slow, gas guzzling twin. Like I said, they're not real popular around here. Now, I'm happy it has worked out that way because I use it enough that having a partner would probably cause a conflict.

Anyway . . . if you get a 337, I'm sure you'll love it as much as most of the folks on this board. Especially if you've ever had an engine go out on you in a single or other twin. That event was my deciding factor on this brand of bird.

Keven
________
DAKOTA

Last edited by Keven : 04-23-11 at 05:54 PM.
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