Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
#1782589
Hey,

I know those 3 are pretty much uncomparable and still are those 3 airplanes the ones that a friend of mine and I am considering in the future.

My dream was always a Golden Eagle, those 2 big engines, the safety it brings with it, the usefull load and tge big classy cabin in that nice 70s and 80s stile charm. But since one engine costs less than 2 we also looked at the Piper PA46 malibu mirage but the biggest problem with the malibu is usefull load... To make a big trip with wifes and baggage even becomes difficult. So we stayed for a while with the decision of a 421, until we read a few more reviews, calculated and realized that if those statements where to be true, the 421 will eat us alive in running costs. Some folks even claimed that running costs (without considering buying costs) would be close to those of a Pilatus pc12


Therefore we wanted to talk to some owners and peaple who have flown/operated those aircrafts.

In fact the main question is: Is the 421 realy that expensive? And if so is it still worth the more costs or would a malibu be the better value for money even if we would be very limited with the malibu.

Secondary question would be: Is the pilatus pc12 realy that cost effective to operate that it can nearly beat a piston aircraft? what are real operating costs? I am speaking of like 100 houres per year maybe some years even less depending on job situation.


We would primarily use the aircraft for cross country trips, spontanous holidays and some few bigger trips a year. Pressurization is a must since we want to be as unlimited by weather as possible and a club seat configuration with enough room for 4-6 (6 regarding kids will come sooner or later) peaple traveling for more than an houre.

If some of you have other ideas of what planes could suit. We also tought about Piper navajos (but since they have no pressurized cabin...) beechcraft queen airs (to hard to find and to maintain in europe) or even a Mitsubishi Mu2 but on this we found very few information but with a engine tbo of 5000houres and great speeds reducing flight houres it could also be considerable. But we nearly always came back to those 3.

I hope we can get some advise specifcally what those planes (malibu, golden eagle, pc12) cost to maintain in Europe since most of the reviews are for the US.
#1782681
OK. First question has to be, "are you serious?" This isn't intended to be rude, it's a professional observation (but I am usually kept away from customers). Anyone who can seriously consider buying a PC12 is unlikely to be considering a 421. If you are in the PC12 investment bracket and want twin engined security - get a Kingair.
421s are for people who can do their own spannering and have a willingness to spend on running costs rather than capital outlay. And don't mind if the aircraft isn't available.....
Malibus are great but, as you know, a bit small if there are a gang of you. Especially if some like shopping........
Much depends on your intentions and situation.
Far too many questions to list here. If you need help buying something, and your budget is high 6, or 7 figures, PM me. It's something my business does for people in your position; we save much more than we cost and we have happy customers.
Operationally, we have ferried for clients since the early 90s and 421s, Chieftains, Caravans, Kingairs, PC12s feature often in our jobs.
G-BLEW, Flyin'Dutch', AndyR and 1 others liked this
#1782716
Do you know how much the insurance is on a PC12? Its the price of Piper Warrior each year. Be sure it's what you need. I've got some first hand experience of the costs, as my business partner manages the one we imported for a customer.

Cessna 421 wouldn't be my choice. 414A would be much better. My friendly DAR told me lots of 421 stories, enough to put me off. A PA31 with a good mechanic who knows them is remarkable bang for the buck. MU2, Commander, Merlin etc all need further specialist maintenance which you might need to travel for. Early King Airs are cheap to buy and expensive to run.

Maintenance and insurance will dictate alot of these purchases. A very light annual on a PC12 is maybe 12k which would do a hell of lot with a PA31.
#1782885
irishc180 wrote:Do you know how much the insurance is on a PC12? Its the price of Piper Warrior each year. Be sure it's what you need. I've got some first hand experience of the costs, as my business partner manages the one we imported for a customer.

Cessna 421 wouldn't be my choice. 414A would be much better. My friendly DAR told me lots of 421 stories, enough to put me off. A PA31 with a good mechanic who knows them is remarkable bang for the buck. MU2, Commander, Merlin etc all need further specialist maintenance which you might need to travel for. Early King Airs are cheap to buy and expensive to run.

Maintenance and insurance will dictate alot of these purchases. A very light annual on a PC12 is maybe 12k which would do a hell of lot with a PA31.



Thanks for the answer. In fact we went for the 421 because of the lower noise level in the cabin an slightly higher speed. And we were told that the difference in runnw. And there are a lot of bad stories related to engines not reaching TBO but aparently this is related to non adapted engine management since the 421s geared engines need more care like for example to not overboost on takeoff.

As far as I know Navajos are not that much cheaper to operate too and they have no pressurizef cabin as far as I know.

The Aero Commander is also on the list but as fir the MU2 you dont find much information about that.

The thing with the pc12 has only come up because we read about running costs as low as those of the golden eagle but with much more advantages. Only downside --> Price. But it is likely that we will keep the plane for a very long time so if we would calculate that price over 20-30-40 it could bebworth it. (And since we spoke about it, it is the number one choice on the feminal side before the golden eagle and finaly the malibu) King airs are much too expensive to run.

Can you maybe explain more on why you would chose the 414A over the 421C? or is it only because of bad reliability reputation?
#1782886
Flyingfemme wrote:OK. First question has to be, "are you serious?" This isn't intended to be rude, it's a professional observation (but I am usually kept away from customers). Anyone who can seriously consider buying a PC12 is unlikely to be considering a 421. If you are in the PC12 investment bracket and want twin engined security - get a Kingair.
421s are for people who can do their own spannering and have a willingness to spend on running costs rather than capital outlay. And don't mind if the aircraft isn't available.....
Malibus are great but, as you know, a bit small if there are a gang of you. Especially if some like shopping........
Much depends on your intentions and situation.
Far too many questions to list here. If you need help buying something, and your budget is high 6, or 7 figures, PM me. It's something my business does for people in your position; we save much more than we cost and we have happy customers.
Operationally, we have ferried for clients since the early 90s and 421s, Chieftains, Caravans, Kingairs, PC12s feature often in our jobs.



Hey thanks for the reply, I will keep your offer in mind if it gets more serious but at the moment the idea is still very young.

A Pc12 would certainly stretch the budget to it's limits but with a used one it would be possible. The only thing is, is it worth to spend that much more over the 421 and are the pc12s running costs realy as low as those for the 421. King air would be much more expensive to maintain as the pc12 and a cheap early model hasn't got much more comfort than the 421.

The problem is less do we can afford it than do we want to afford it. Pc12 is a limit but especially for the malibu or 421 question we don't know if the 421 is worth the much higher maintenance costs.