daver328

Upgrade from C to K? Should we??

Recommended Posts

I’ve (still) got the faster / farther “bug!”

I know many of you have upgraded from C-Fs to K-Ms ....I am still wondering if we should too?

Our mission is to fly over the Southeast US to various Caribbean Islands about four times a year. I hope to increase that to six or more times a year as I near retirement in ... say 5-9 years. Typical flight days are 850NM with a fuel stop before leaving Florida. Usually two people, my wife and I.

1).    The short body airframe is absolutely packed with two of us: two bags, plus an extra smaller bag for my wife, snorkels and fins, beach mats, misc food items we can’t get there ... a small 6-10 pack cooler, life raft and life vests. We continue to return to places we like ... and to stretch further out to visit new places .... 

2).    It seems we’re zig- zagging our way down the Florida Peninsula at 9000’-10,000’ a lot trying to avoid baby puffy clouds ... and I wonder if we were at 14,000’-18,000’ wouldn’t we just cruise along nicely with far less deviations? And it makes for a fairly long day. I’d love a K to speed it up a little!

We bought a 65C four years ago for $40,500 and have put at least that much into it since. I’m worried that:

  • I’ll really lose my shirt when we sell it ... I know the market won’t bear. $80,000 C
  • I just got the plane how I want it. Maybe we should enjoy it a while? Only things left are SabreMechs Cowl mod and 201 windshield conversion. 
  • I’m not sure I want to go through all that again, (emotionally and financially) with a new plane - getting it where I want it?
  • The C is very budget friendly, the K is an unknown to me?

What can we expect for a K (252 /231) purchase price? (I know some about the LB vs GB engines issues) I know the prices are all over the place depending on hours, avionics and engine monitors etc.)

What can we expect as far as the amount of increased operating cost?

Do we really need a K for our mission? Is this a want or a need? 

What prompted you to upgrade from C/Fs to K/Ms?

Your thoughts? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

*Members that donate $10 or more do not see advertisements*

I find it’s safer to look at TBM’s or PC12’s, out of my price range enough that I won’t pull the trigger on a good deal.  The K’s are a great value and definitely make sense as a steppingstone or the final destination. 

I would think the upgrade price delta should be reasonable and might provide you with other niceties (newer P/I, glass etc)

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I recently made the move from an F to a K (231) because of a couple of things.  I, too, wanted to be able to climb higher, go faster, and get above weather.  But, I wanted to update the avionics and to do that in my F was cost prohibitive rather than just buying a K and adding what it did not have.  I had an F without a IFR certified GPS (handheld only) with old Nav/Coms, old transponder, and without a autopilot.

I found, for what I was able to get out of the F (good paint, good airframe, good engine), that I could add the stuff I wanted into the K and also reap the benefits of a far traveler for a good "value" stepping stone.

My M20K 231 came equipped with the upgraded LB mid-time engine that averages 200+ hrs/year engine. Dual 430s, a KFC 200 autopilot (completely re-serviced), Insight G3 engine monitor, Merlyn Auto Wastegate, Intercooler, Long Range fuel (103 gal) and then all the standard stuff a 1983 K came with with a few upgrades: speed brakes, standby vac, nice paint/interior, and factory O2.  I chose to upgrade to a GTN 750, GTX 345, FlightStream 510 and am waiting to decide on the new G5 HSI + GAD29B when it comes out.

For me, it satisifes my mission.  PM me with any questions that I might be able to further answer.

Edited by Bryan
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very few of us can legitimately justify what we spend on our airplanes.

If you want one and can afford it, do it.

We'll wait on your full report after your transition.  :D

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
28 minutes ago, Mooneymite said:

Very few of us can legitimately justify what we spend on our airplanes.

If you want one and can afford it, do it.

We'll wait on your full report after your transition.  :D

I’m told ramen noodles have a lot of nutrition! We can always trim down the food budget to make room for a K!

and who needs a/c in the summer ... we can just open the windows!!!! And use 58° in the winter and wear sweaters in the house!

ya!

that make-up is so expensive. I’m sure she’ll be on board with giving that up! And she’ll have more time in the mornings now that she won’t need to stand in front of the mirror!

Right?

that generic store brand toothpaste and deodorant is just as good as the name brands!

right on baby!

and eating out is way too costly. I’m sure she won’t mind cooking every single meal with no going out to dinner! 

I think we’ve got this thing figured out Gus!

I cant wait for Tammy to get home from work so I can tell her the great news!

 

  • Like 2
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If your'e retired, what's another hour or two? I believe most K models have less useful load than most C models do... Will your wife leave her second bag at home?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some Big reasons of having an M20C to begin with....

  • budget
  • early in flying career
  • not knowing if GA fits one's lifestyle.
  • Not knowing how well built a Mooney really is.
  • Can you get an IR in it?
  • Timeline might be measured in years.
  • Some Keep their C forever, because it fits....
  • Some move over to an E before loading up the panel...

 

Once past those hurdles...

  • Preference for NA, TC, or TN is already easy to answer.
  • Length of cabin, already well understood.
  • Knowing instruments and other attributes, are easy to define
  • Timeline measured in decades.
  • Personal Finances are pretty well known by then.

 

Ultimate End of line Mooneys are well developed and pretty well finished...

  • Es and Js.
  • Ks up through 252, 262, and Rockets.
  • Long Bodies w/ 310hp, or TN or M.

Being a pro pilot, you know Aviation pretty well. Stepping up to the next level in one's private life has got to be less daunting.

Or continue on with keeping a wonderful C...

My C had to go.  It was fully worn and ill equipped.  I was looking at Js and missiles when the O popped up on the market...

Ramen noodles and old cars have financed many Moonies...

Timing is everything.

Best regards,

-a- 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
26 minutes ago, daver328 said:

I think we’ve got this thing figured out Gus!

I cant wait for Tammy to get home from work so I can tell her the great news!

To show my encouragement and good will, I'll make an obscenely low-ball offer on your C just to help you along your well-deserved up-grade.  Call All American and find out what's available. 

:D

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We live in a very modest house, on a small lot in town... no big overhead expenses ... hanger rent is the worst and it’s not bad. 

We’re practically debt free, nearing retirement, retirement mostly saved ...

We can afford it, except I’m a CB  ... err ... miserly ... ... thrifty ... economically minded ... 

and we did way too much to our C, to just sell it now 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
32 minutes ago, Heloman said:

If your'e retired, what's another hour or two? I believe most K models have less useful load than most C models do... Will your wife leave her second bag at home?

It’s not so much the weight, we’re still comfortably below max ... we “cube out” the room. It’s the space .... I’m wondering is the K baggage area bigger or just the back seat leg-room? 

It's not so much the time either ... or range ... we need to land for bathroom breaks more than for fuel, it’s getting above the baby cumulus layers ... or mostly above ... instead if zig-zagging the entire length of Florida. I know we won’t top the big stuff, and I usually go around the big ones anyway - even if I can top them ..

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, daver328 said:

It’s not so much the weight, we’re still comfortably below max ... we “cube out” the room. It’s the space .... I’m wondering is the K baggage area bigger or just the back seat leg-room? 

Just imagine the size of the cube with those back seats folded down!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes. 

But I'm a turbo snob.

If you're flying out east, I'm not certain it's worth it. Take the back seats out and you have lots of room. I carry me, the wife, a cooler, two bags, a propane grill, and 2 folding chairs with ease. And 100 gal of fuel. I flew 900nm to the coast yesterday pushing the wind nonstop in 5 hours, but had to pull back to 65 percent to save gas 

 

It'll cost you more to own and operate but it might be worth it to you, or it might not. I can't answer that. It absolutely is to me but I fly in the rocks.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Can you visit AAA?

It is great to see the various body lengths side by side...

Folding back seat is pretty cool.

Folding back seat of a long body is cavernous.

idea...

1) visit with AAA

2) put together a plausible deal...

3) identify the base numbers... cost of new to you plane.  Value of the trade in of old plane.

4) You can always do better buying and selling on your own.

5) AAA just adds the pro touch to all the transactions.

PP ideas only, not a machine salesman...

Best regards,

-a-

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Turbo snob is one thing, turbo rocket owner knows what he wants...

An IO550 is pretty good at climbing out of some shorter runways.

Best regards,

-a-

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, carusoam said:

Turbo snob is one thing, turbo rocket owner knows what he wants...

An IO550 is pretty good at climbing out of some shorter runways.

Best regards,

-a-

We had a Merlin/turbo plus 231 before the rocket.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mid body fuselages got additional ~5" in rear seat leg room and ~5" in baggage room over the shorter versions. If you get an '82+ K you'll get the removable/folding rear seats that will greatly enhance your cargo carrying ability.

Several FL pilots here will extol the value of a turbo to get above the heat, bumps, and clouds easily. I don't think any one of them regrets the choice!

Sent from my LG-US996 using Tapatalk

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I'd spent coin sorting out my aircraft I'd keep it.  The only real reason for a big back seat is pax.  I doubt the time difference is going to be all that much, and your C should get up to the low teens as it is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I went from a C to a 231 and have loved the improved performance!  Yes, you'll lose your shirt on the sale of the C, but 231s are a bargain.  Direct costs between C and K on the same trips; Around 300nm, C burns 1-2 gallons more, 600 + nm, the K is much cheaper, no fuel stop and much faster.

Much roomier, much faster, more standard equipment, etc. 

Get a K!  You'll love it!

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My C had a UL of #995 and my K is at #985.  The K carries 24 more gallons so my full fuel payload is around #150 less.  The MPG will be nearly identical (K should win by a touch) so by offloading fuel payload is similar.

The extra 10" (5" and 5" as KSMooniac pointed out, same for all mid-body) is very noticeable, with the rear seat removed even my wife would have a hard time filling it up.  Although our C worked great for the 2 of us.

I'm enjoying having a turbo (only about 40hrs so far).  It nice being able to climb at will when in the mid to upper teens.  

The question is Turbo or not Turbo.  It's a personal choice with no right answer.  I personally would like the turbo for flying the Caribbean.

Cheers,

Dan 

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I love my 231. It is really nice to be able to fly high, especially for weather. But that being said, the cost of changing planes is a pretty bitter pill to have to swallow, when any Mooney will work well for most of our flying. 

As someone else said, if you can justify it to yourself and the wife; go for it.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, jkhirsch said:

Just imagine the size of the cube with those back seats folded down!

Here is a pic with the back seats out and folded in my 231:

IMG_20170901_182609.jpg

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks to all for the great comments, information and photos. I’m learning a lot. Keep it coming. I have to make a case to the boss - she LOVES our C!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

*Members that donate $10 or more do not see advertisements*