News: Added Links For Twin Commander and Facebook Pages

Login  |  Register

Author Topic: Mogas  (Read 7466 times)

Dan Lee

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 8
Mogas
« on: January 30, 2016, 03:51:32 pm »
Hi - I live in the UK and am fascinated by the aero commander....I am looking to upgrade to a twin in the future and have some questions regarding the different models....

- Can anyone tell me which models can run Mogas?

- Is it only the 520 model that depends on the left engine for hydraulics? Sounds terrifying in the event of left engine failure on take off when gear and flaps both drop!

Many thanks

Dan

Adam Frisch

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1564
    • Adam Frisch FSF
Re: Mogas
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2016, 03:55:09 pm »
The 520 can do it from factory (but make sure it has no Ethanol in it). I would assume the 560 series could all do it as they also had geared engines (560F's are great performers). Or probably any of the NA GO-480 models. Some of the normally aspirated 500's could probably do it with the Petersen STC, especially with the earlier IO-470.

Yes, the 520 has only one hyd pump. But it does have a manual pump next to pilot. So you could pump that to prevent gear from deploying.  ;)
« Last Edit: January 30, 2016, 04:03:18 pm by Adam Frisch »
Slumming it in the turboprop world - so you don't have to.

SKYFLYER

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 554
Re: Mogas
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2016, 04:08:22 pm »
Hi Dan ...
I do not think the Petersen STC will work for any Twin Commander.. the  following includes all of the engines that can use mogas via STC..
http://www.matronics.com/digest/commander-list/Digest.Commander-List.2004-12-14.txt

You can read thru the text and decide for yourself, but I am not aware of ANY Twin Commander on an approved STC mogas list. And regardless of what you decide, Adam is very correct NEVER EVER put any fuel into a piston Commander that contains Ethanol regardless the percent.

Adam Frisch

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1564
    • Adam Frisch FSF
Re: Mogas
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2016, 04:14:41 pm »
Maybe board members with NA GO-480's could tell us what the Octane RON certification is from the POH? Although the RON standards have changed since, the 520 was certified for 81 Octane RON, which is more or less the equivalent of todays Mogas that's around 89, 91. I'm assuming the low compression GO-480's should be able to do something similar.

Just a note - GO-480's come in both high and low compression models. The high compression ones won't do it.
Slumming it in the turboprop world - so you don't have to.

Dan Lee

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 8
Re: Mogas
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2016, 04:22:05 pm »
Hi Adam

Many thanks for the reply. Also a huge thanks for posting your videos, very inspiring... Seems most new pilots here in the UK wants a Cirrus and it is great to meet someone under the retirement age who also wants to fly these wonderful old planes.

What led you to the Commander in the first place? Was it the safety aspect of the twin engines? I currently fly an F33a and a Zlin 526F but really want the security of a twin to start flying my family around Europe. Key for me is the ability to use shorter grass strips as we have so many fantastic ones in the UK and France and so a twin with a moderate STOL performance is on my shopping list....

Mmmm ethanol free Mogas is not so easy .... <5% readily available






Adam Frisch

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1564
    • Adam Frisch FSF
Re: Mogas
« Reply #5 on: January 30, 2016, 07:50:21 pm »
Hi Dan.

Nice to hear you're interested in Commanders! I lived in UK for many years and flew there quite a bit. Never any twins. But the place would be perfect for them with all those short grass strips. I used to fly into Damyns Hall, Denham and Elstree all the time. All three would be a piece of cake for a light Twin Commander.

What lead me to Commanders was the utility factor. I've always liked the idea of being independent in my flying and being able to get into airfields that are either challenging or short and without ground support. I also like high wings and a good view. And the Commanders are great at all those things. They're equally at home on a bush strip in the Andes, as they are taxiing up to fancy FBO. It's the Cadillac Escalade of the sky.
 
As for why it need to be a twin, well, today, I simply don't feel safe in singles. I know statistically that might not be the case, but in a twin, when one quits, you normally don't end up as a statistic. In a single, you probably do. And especially in the UK where every flight abroad is either over the Channel or the Irish Sea, it's good to have that second one purring out there. Long stretches over water at winter or at night - I don't know how the guys do it in singles. I'd be a nervous wreck.

You should go and have a look a G-AWOE at Elstree. I believe it's still for sale. It's a 680E with the geared engines. They're supercharged, so won't be able to do Mogas in them and it's high time. It's been sitting for quite some time since the owner died (he used to own Elstree Airfield), so might be too far gone by now, but at least you could get a feel for it. The geared Commanders will always have shorter takeoff than then non-geared. They just have more torque and will get going quicker. My 520 was insane in that regard, as you can see in some of my videos. But a 560F will do almost as well, and it's a bigger plane with greater range. But geared engines will cost more at overhaul and to keep running, so it's a balance one has to make.

Otherwise, the safest bet is to buy a 500A or B model. They're great planes with straightforward systems. They won't takeoff quite as short as the geared ones, but they're still pretty good. A 500B is just bulletproof and a gold standard in Commanders. And in Europe, you'd want a model like that that's easily worked on, rather than perhaps a geared engine that very few can overhaul or support.

Let us know how it goes.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2016, 07:53:41 pm by Adam Frisch »
Slumming it in the turboprop world - so you don't have to.

Dan Lee

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 8
Re: Mogas
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2016, 06:23:43 am »
I know Elstree well ... it seems G-AWOE has been deregistered ... I think it's a bit large for my needs and that must drink Avgas like nothing I have ever seen!

This has been for sale for a while http://n222le.weebly.com not sure if anyone knows about it here? Are speed and fuel consumption claims realistic?

I know exactly what you mean about the single engine dilemma. I'm very happy in the F33A over fields but mountains / forest / sea give me sleepless nights ! As I said before most people seem to go the Cirrus route to mitigate the single engine risk but then you have to stick to the large paved runways and hope the chute works if you need it! And you have a plane with all the character of a Ford Taurus.

I am still in the "romantic" versus "practical" camp with regards aircraft ownership. I don't have to fly, I want to fly and so I want a plane that makes me smile when I see it on the ramp.

The Baron is the more obvious choice here I suppose as there are lots in the UK at bargain basement prices and with VG's they land pretty short. They're in and out of Elstree all of the time which is sub 2000 feet.

I probably need to have a fly in a commander when I am over in the USA next....

I am happy to buy and fly on N-reg here in Europe...the trip home could be fun !

Dan

donv

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2908
Re: Mogas
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2016, 01:32:09 pm »
I think a friend of mine owned N222LE for most of the 1990s... she didn't get 15,000+ hours from being a pampered, personal airplane! I believe he used her for freight in the winter and BLM work in Alaska in the summers.

That said, if I were in the market for a 500, N222LE looks to be a great choice. I wouldn't be concerned about the total time, especially since so much stuff has been done, upgraded, or replaced in recent years.

Won't run on mogas, though.

ghancock

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1152
Re: Mogas
« Reply #8 on: January 31, 2016, 10:06:20 pm »
Just a question:  Do that many airports over there actually have MOGas?  Here in the states it is nice to have a small plane that can run on it but these big planes that you normally use to travel greater distances wouldn't matter as no airports I've visited would even have it to buy.  Not to mention I don't think I'd use it in any twin engine high performance air plane that my family was riding in.


Thanks,

Glenn
--glenn
You can't win an argument with an ignorant person,  they'll just drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.

Adam Frisch

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1564
    • Adam Frisch FSF
Re: Mogas
« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2016, 12:05:17 am »
That bird is overpriced with missing logs and high time airframe in my opinion, Dan. That should be less than half the price. You can do better.

One thing with the Commanders is you have to take top speed with grain of salt. They're roomy, great bush planes, stable etc, but they're not fast for their horsepower. I had Aerostar before (awesome airplane), and it'll go a lot faster on the same engines. But, it's not as roomy and needs tons of runway. They're all compromises.
Slumming it in the turboprop world - so you don't have to.

Dan Lee

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 8
Re: Mogas
« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2016, 07:57:24 am »
Hi Glenn

There are more and more airports with it becoming available but you're right that it is not everywhere.... I also fly a Flight Design CT and it runs a Rotax which I always fill with Mogas. I flew it down to Spain in November last year and we managed to get Mogas in all but one airfield that we visited. In Spain Mogas is literally 60% of the cost of Avgas because of the taxes they have put on General Aviation....

Mogas is not essential for me - it was just interesting to know if other models of the Commander did have an STC as it gives you options....

Dan

donv

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2908
Re: Mogas
« Reply #11 on: February 01, 2016, 04:52:51 pm »
It's funny, I didn't notice the "complete logs and records for last 14 years"-- that would coincide with the end of my friend's ownership. I imagine those records could be reconstructed pretty easily if you really wanted them, since the ownership is known.