What comes after a DA40?

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Chris
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by Chris » Wed Dec 02, 2015 3:36 am

Wow, that looks like a great choice of aircraft. Congratulations on your upgrade! I'm looking forward to reading some EA-400 pireps from you, and I'm glad you'll still be hanging out here as well.
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by CFIDave » Wed Dec 02, 2015 7:48 pm

Antoine:

Congrats on your new plane -- I was very surprised to see another Extra 400 this week parked on the ramp at our local airport, so there are a few also flying around the US.

If I had previous experience flying a DA40 G1000 (with SVT or not), the G500 would be the obvious next best choice for my panel as an HSI. Drive it with a pair of Garmin GTN 750/650 touch-screen navcom units in the center stack and you'll have a "better than G1000" panel.
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by Thomas » Wed Dec 02, 2015 8:01 pm

Hi Antoine,
Also my side .... Congrats to you upgrade. Re you avionics choice, I do fly now often as a Co in a PC12 ... Old fashion avionics ... Modified with GTN 750/650. This is an real improvement ...
About the airframe,have a good look to the gear retraction/extension maintenace, it seems this is an issue sometimes with the Extra.
Greetings from Buochs Airport LSZC, come and visit us once, the first landing fee is free for DAN members friends.
Thomas Bienz DA40-180 40.337 D-ENMA
Home Airport LSZC Buochs Switzerland
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by Erik » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:00 am

Yay for you Antoine. That is a very cool plane. They make a beautiful turboprop version too. A liquid cooled continental six is an especially nice engine since this removes all the cooling issues ascent and descent. That airplane is what the DA50 had aspired to become but never did. A pressurized 6 seater is a beautiful thing. As you know I sold my Da40 about 5 years ago to move to this Mooney rocket and it continues to be a great ride. Maybe someday when I come back to Switzerland I can see that airplane too.

As for new avionics - you are so used to Garmin 1000 - I would think a Garmin 500 is the natural choice from what you are debating.
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by Antoine » Thu Dec 03, 2015 6:55 am

Thank you Chris, Dave, Thomas!!!!
Thomas: promised I will come. What is your rwy length again? (Issue with the E400)
Erik! Good to see you here mate! Our common flight from Lausanne was a great memory and an example of why I like to call people here "friends". So this Rocket is still going strong? We noh have one thing in common: the fuel bill!!!

I am delighted that everyone here seems to like the E400.
I agree the G500 is of course a logical choice stepping "down" from a G1000 . This is especially true regarding the similar PFD screen layout. Aspen is quite different.
I made a beautiful IFR flight yesterday and when setting my VNAV parameters was thinking "how elegant and integrated"... This is maybe one reason NOT to go to a G500 - my EA400 has an STEC 55X autopilot, and I've seen youtube video of the G500 integration (or lack thereof) - disappointing...
On the other hand, the G500 seems to solve a number of issues with the g1000.
Here a couple of questions about panel choices:
1) Cheap solution vs GTN750: WAAS upgrading (2 x $ 4 K) and re-using the GNS530 and 540 and reducing them to a minimal role - moving as much as possible of the FPL to an ipad?
2) If the 530 and 430 have to go, why do I need TWO GTNs? I could use the real estate for a centrally placed engine monitor. Two radios are handy, but also an error/embarassment source (ask me how I know!)
3) Would you move the transponder (330) to a remote location or keep this direct entry capability handy?
4) Who needs TWO transponders???
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by CFIDave » Thu Dec 03, 2015 2:30 pm

1. A GNS430W and 530W will do the job, but are 20+ year-old tech -- they don't even support airways, but require you to add in all the waypoints to your flight plan. The new GTN series are much more legible and easier to use, and will only get better as Garmin comes out with new software updates for them. It's just a matter of money. ;-)
2. You need a backup navigator in case the first one fails, but more importantly, you need two radios that come with these units. I can't realistically see flying IFR without being able to listen to 2 frequencies simultaneously, and especially being able to pre-load multiple frequencies to "stay ahead of the airplane." (You will be flying a much faster plane, right?)
3. With a GTN I'd consider getting the remote "headless" Garmin transponder that can be hidden behind the panel, and controlled through the GTN screen (just like a G1000). This will result in a cleaner panel.
4. You don't need two transponders.
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by carym » Thu Dec 03, 2015 3:00 pm

Antoine,
I am truly jealous. What a gorgeous and useful upgrade. This looks to be the perfect airplane. I am just wondering why there aren't more of them around (or why more of them weren't made). As we are getting closer to settling the law suit with Diamond, I too will be looking for something to replace my DA42. You have now made my choice much more difficult :) . I look forward to your PIREPS as you train and fly with your new baby. Congratulations!!
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by Antoine » Thu Dec 03, 2015 4:45 pm

Hi Cary. I hope you were successful and will be very pleased/relieved to hear that you got yourself off the DA42 maintenance hook.
What will you have after the 42?
One reason why this Extra is not very popular is its complexity and maintenance costs. I am aware of that and have budgeted accordingly. The engine is also very exotic and it has a reputation for needing costly repairs too.

Break break!

Thanks for your insightful reply Dave. The following is meant as a continuation of the debate re 530W or not :
CFIDave wrote:1. A GNS430W and 530W will do the job, but are 20+ year-old tech -- they don't even support airways, but require you to add in all the waypoints to your flight plan. The new GTN series are much more legible and easier to use, and will only get better as Garmin comes out with new software updates for them. It's just a matter of money. ;-)
2. You need a backup navigator in case the first one fails, but more importantly, you need two radios that come with these units. I can't realistically see flying IFR without being able to listen to 2 frequencies simultaneously, and especially being able to pre-load multiple frequencies to "stay ahead of the airplane." (You will be flying a much faster plane, right?)
Of course it's primarily a matter of money but also real estate.
I made 2 IFR flights and was watching the way I use radios - can only fully agree with your point re 2 radios so let's call this issue "closed". I need two NAVCOMS.

The huge price ticket of getting a 750/650 combo (or even two 650s) makes me challenge WHY I need them, since I already have a beautiful and bigger G500 MFD to display on.
If there were a way of loading flight plans from an iPad into the 530/430 I would basically never use the 530/430 screens apart from entering frequencies, selecting approaches , essentially textual data...
The WAAS upgrade of both existing devices would cost $ 8000.
A pair of GTN650's would cost $20'000.
See my dilemna?
More input welcome.
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by CFIDave » Thu Dec 03, 2015 5:16 pm

I can't see sinking $8000 into a pair of 20 year old GNS 530/430 units if you can afford to pay $20K for new GTN650s. There's also a nice resale market for used 530/430 units, so you should be able to make some money back by selling those.

Garmin's ability to load flight plan data from an iPad into your panel will work with a GNS 430W/530W, but it requires adding a $1000 Flightstream 210 gateway receiver. So now you're up to $9000 to keep the old 430/530 Navcom units. (The new GTN units are so much easier to use that you probably wouldn't bother to load flight plans from your iPad.)
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Re: What comes after a DA40?

Post by Erik » Thu Dec 03, 2015 5:58 pm

Antoine wrote:Thank you Chris, Dave, Thomas!!!!
Thomas: promised I will come. What is your rwy length again? (Issue with the E400)
Erik! Good to see you here mate! Our common flight from Lausanne was a great memory and an example of why I like to call people here "friends". So this Rocket is still going strong? We noh have one thing in common: the fuel bill!!!
Hi Antoine, Indeed - that was the most amazing flight we took that day. Was it 3 years ago? Did i ever send you the pictures? I hope so or I must - they are without a doubt the most amazing pictures I ever took in an airplane. One in particular I framed. I should post here when I figure out how.

Yup my tks'ed Rocket is still going strong. I even successfully trained for and did my commercial test ride in last year. I have about 700 hrs in it now. I am scheduled for the paint shop in March - which is sort of an affirmation that I am planning on keeping her quite a bit longer. I got a 4 blade MT prop for it this last year, with the leading nickel edge.

A word of experience with the continentals. The workmanship on valves from the factory is poor. A lot of continentals from that era needed tops because exhaust gases leak past poorly closing valves. If yours needs a top, I would suggest taking the opportunity to get the exhaust valves honed by a specialist. A lot of folks even have brand new continental cylinders "overhauled" before installing into a newly built engine for this reason.

Yes we burn more fuel, but we go faster. On a per trip basis I am not burning much more fuel at all. On a per hour basis, I am burning much more fuel. So when I am just going out to fly for sake of flying....

I keep my ipad on the yoke with a ram mount. A classic steering wheel yoke is actually very conducive to this vs a stick yoke.

I really like that EA400 - I have never been in one but it reminds me in concept of the Cessna P210, but quite a bit faster, probably because it is a slicker, smoother carbon fiber modern design.
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