Get the latest news on coronavirus impacts on general aviation, including what AOPA is doing to protect GA, event cancellations, advice for pilots to protect themselves, and more. Not a member? Age belies the instrument panels of the straight PA-30s and the -B models. Standard GE 4500 or Whelen LED Bulbs. Then he talked with Bill Roundtree and Ken Talhelm at Muncie Aviation, and that’s when things took off. The paint, engines, and propellers were already whole at the onset of the 18-month upgrade project undertaken by Muncie Aviation. However, it's difficult to detect water as it flows by. TTAF 5658. Piper Twin Comanche PA-30 / PA-39. Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association Find it free on the store. (It may not be Goodrich - I remember getting a call from the facility doing this but I kept no notes). The Twin Comanche was developed from the single engine Comanche by Ed Swearingen who at the time operated a facility that specialized in the modification of production aircraft. Not a member? In that same year, 100-hour inspections of the aileron spar doublers were also put in effect through an AD, although installation of a Piper modification kit obviates this rule. Piper PA-30,39 Series JW Miller Nose Taxi Lights (12 V) $690.00: JWM3400: LOCID: ELP4030D: Piper PA-30,39 Twin Comanche Series JW Miller Nose Taxi Lights. Such objectives may seem incompatible in the same airplane, but the truth is that from 1963 to 1972 Piper built about 2,200 airplanes with those characteristics. The -C and Turbo C models came out in 1968 and brought with them instrument panels laid out in the modern, standard T-configuration for the flight instruments. The Piper PA-30 Twin Comanche (later PA-39) was designed as a twin-engined variant of the Piper PA-24 Comanche. A good-looking, four- to six-place light twin that goes 170 knots on 17 gph and costs a relatively modest $45,000 to $80,000? You are looking a B55 speeds at 20 gph with those. It's arguably the best light twin available, and its bang for the buck is exceeded only by its classy looks. A membership in the International Comanche Society is a great way to enhance your Comanche ownership experience. PA-30 Twin Comanche MILLER (1) Twin Comanche 200 PIPER PA-30 Turbo Twin Comanche PIPER PA-30 Twin Comanche PIPER PA-39 Twin Comanche CR. Roughly 2,200 PA–30/39s were built, and anecdotal information suggests there are about 100 Miller mod-equipped PA–30s. He began flying in 1975 and has an airline transport pilot and flight instructor certificates. Seems that the Twin Comanche has earned a reputation for lifting off before reaching VMC. The pilot new to the breed should seek out qualified instruction, maintain a high level of proficiency, and be well aware of the airplane's maintenance requirements. (He welcomes fellow pilots to his 2,300-foot strip, but does suggest calling ahead to make sure that the runway is in good shape.). Yes, spending a lot on conversions is compromising short-term liquidity, but on the other hand, you can’t take it with you. Buying an airplane, especially for the first-time buyer, is a big event. (Estimated Install Time 5 Hours) (12 Volt Systems) N88WW A 1972 Piper Comanche Twin sporting two Lycoming IO-320's. It has the Lopresti cowls and spinners; the last of the Miller nose and wing locker mods; Osborne tip tanks; and an upgraded electrical system and avionics, including an electronic horizontal situation indicator, Stormscope, and weather radar. By 1967, 13 fatal training accidents had occurred in Twin Comanches. Kristin On top of this, approach speeds are cut by 15 mph, or 13 knots, a side benefit of the kit's high-lift devices. airwolf remote oil filter kits stc: sa00024ny. The bungees also keep the gear from collapsing after a manual gear extension, so it pays to replace them more often than the mandatory interval. In 2012, Ed Pepper acquired the turbonormalized Miller-conversion Piper Twin Comanche N99AR for $137,000, and heâs invested more than $350,000 since thenâmaking his airplane into what arguably could be called one of the best personal twins in the world. Add the tip tanks and top off the other four wing fuel tanks and payload drops to 650 pounds or so. The Society serves as a vehicle for Comanche-specific training programs offered by instructors completely familiar with these airplanes and sponsors regular fly-ins of the Comanche faithful. Today the cost of acquiring a new general aviation aircraft is prohibitively high for most pilots. Add to all of this a new panel with Garmin avionics, digital radar, Century 4000 autopilot, JPI 960, all magneto and operational switches moved to a new console above the windshield, and more. No more so than any other light twin. Takeoff and landing distances over the FAA's mythical 50-foot obstacle are slashed by half, compared to an unmodified airplane. Though certain legal problems may prevail, the Baileys' company — Palm Beach Roamer (407/966-4277) — is more than willing to build you a Bullet of your own. Loaded with mods. That aside, the Twin Comanche will serve you as no other light twin can. Pepper’s Twin Comanche is truly a one-of-a-kind airplane whose utility and performance exceed those of newer airplanes with higher price tags. Short Delivery flight of a rare 1966 Twin-Comanche with 200HP turbo-charged engines, Robertson STOL and an updated Glass Cockpit. Alas, Snow sold his Twin Comanche shortly after the photographs were taken. Pepper’s Twin Comanche is a manifestation of Pepper’s perfectionism, experience, and vision. Instructors routinely pulled an engine just after takeoff. Lose the left engine and that extra thrust can make the airplane yaw uncontrollably and, if the airspeed is low enough, cause the airplane to roll inverted. A new overhead panel is one of Muncie Aviationâs custom touches. A place for owners, pilots, and enthusiasts of the Piper Comanche and Twin Comanche series of aircraft to share experiences and exchange information to enhance the airworthiness and enjoyment of these fine aircraft. Why would anyone invest so much in a 46-year-old airplane? Landings are another source of conversational fodder. These include a 1/4-inch-thick, one-piece windshield (add 1 to 4 mph to cruise): a windshield cowl (worth an extra 1 to 3 mph); dorsal fin (2 to 4 mph); vertical fin cap (1 to 2 mph); wing root fairings (1 to 2 mph); rudder gap seal (1 to 2 mph); aileron and flap gap seals (6 to 7 mph); gear lobe fairings (5 to 9 mph); and nacelle exhaust fairings (3 to 6 mph). One airplane I adored, but try finding one, is a Miller Twin Comanche. Pepper’s fond memory of his efficient Twin Comanche, coupled with the costs of flying the big cabin-class Cessna, led to his decision in 2012 to find a Twin Comanche that would perform similarly to his Chancellor. Cost of highly modified and "loaded" airplane, which started out as a used 1964 airframe, was significantly less than a new twin. The Piper Twin Comanche is powered by two Lycoming IO-320-B1A engine. The ICS is an invaluable source of information about any and everything having to do with Comanche singles or twins. Also, human factors was still an infant science in those days, and old Twin Comanches show it. He’s flown everything from ultralights to Gulfstreams and ferried numerous piston airplanes across the Atlantic. A good-looking, four- to six-place light twin that goes 170 knots on 17 gph and costs a relatively modest $45,000 to $80,000? In 1966, the PA-30B step-up model was offered which included a third side windows and six seats. dual 50amp inter-av alternators stc: sa334sw. AOPA Pilot Editor at Large Tom Horne has worked at AOPA since the early 1980s. ©2020 Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, 2 Lycoming IO-320-C1A, 160 hp @ 2,700 rpm, Payload with full fuel (basic aircraft) with tip tanks, Fuel capacity, standard/usable with tip tanks, Single-engine rate of climb (gross weight), Cruise speed, ff, std range/range w/ tip tanks, Turbo cruise speed, ff, range w/ no reserve, Economy cruise speed, ff, range w/ no reserve, VSO (Stall speed with gear and flaps down), VMC (Minimum control speed with critical engine inop), VYSE (Best single-engine rate-of-climb speed), VLE (Maximum landing-gear-extended speed). Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association Find it free on the store. Supplemental type certificates originally owned by J.W. dorsal fin stc: sa1112sw. The big improvement here was the introduction of counter-rotating propellers. Already a member? N99AR is a turbonormalized 1969 C model, with 200-horsepower engines, hot props, windshield deice plate, baggage compartment in the nose, nacelle lockers, and eight fuel tanks for 140 gallons (134 usable). Couple this with the regulatory requirement for multiengine rating applicants to demonstrate competence in flying at VMC (the minimum control airspeed with the critical engine inoperative) and you have the makings of a safety problem. Because the fuel drains away from the pilot's view, it can be difficult to detect any water or contaminants. These valves are exchange only on like-kind rebuildable cores; available separately. The airplane's age should be a warning flag to prospective buyers. As part of its sales pitch, Piper claimed that a Twin Comanche could be operated for $17 an hour. For example, all the electrical switches were identical toggle switches, making them easy to misidentify, and circuit breakers were kept beneath a trap door below the power quadrant. Flown properly by adequately-trained and current pilots, the airplane behaves quite predictably. If it is a stock, see if you can get copies of the 337 and any other information on parts, etc. The airplane's laminar flow airfoils shed lift quickly and are more suited for high-speed cruising than exploring the slowest end of the flight envelope. Miller conversion in a nutshell. Muncie Aviation transformed Ed Pepper’s Twin Comanche with extensive upgrades and additions: • Two Garmin GTN 750s The whole idea was to let pilots sump their tanks without having to wreck their suits by crawling beneath the wings. Get the latest news on coronavirus impacts on general aviation, including what AOPA is doing to protect GA, event cancellations, advice for pilots to protect themselves, and more. Another AD mandates inspection of the turbines at 100-hour intervals. Was this a Miller Twin or a stock 160hp Twinkie? Already a member? The drill was to make an initial power setting with the throttles, then screw in the wastegate controls to close the wastegates and raise the manifold pressures to a desired level. I have a flow a good number of twins and I will say this is one impressive little bird. Magneto and starter switches were moved to a side panel, electrical switches were converted to internally-lighted rocker switches, and the circuit breakers were moved to the lower right subpanel. Even so, Snow is pleased with his airplane's performance and says the STOL kit has lived up to every promise. A J.P. Instruments EDM 960 lights up the panel with engine data. If you installed all the speed mods, it appears the added speed benefit would give you an airplane with 300- knot cruise speeds — if the claims are to be believed. We are accepting pre-orders at Oshkosh EAA Airventure at reduced "show prices" for the following aircraft models: PA30/PA39, PA-24-250, M20E/M20F, LA-4-200. A 1977 AD calls for inspection or replacement of the aileron hinge brackets every 100 hours. These cowls also allow easier access to the starters and alternator belt. LE 985 SMOH with millennium cylinders and 30hrs STOH, RE 685 SMOH. Osage County Guns, Pepper proudly claims, is the only fly-in gun shop in the nation. But as it turned out, many unlucky — or unwise — students and instructors learned that Twin Comanches could bite back. A jazzy, super-sleek cowl, festooned with NACA induction air scoops and slit-like air intakes, is also available. Airworthy Comanche Forum - Want to buy Deiced turbo PA30/39 - Yes - and some facility is finishing up a Twin Comanche installation as we speak. The ICS sells a great book on Comanche maintenance, and Taylor also stars in a videotape about Comanche technical tips. PA-39 C/Rs (for counter-rotating), as they were called, had the advantage of vastly reducing the adverse effects of asymmetric thrust in engine-out situations where the critical engine failed. • JP Instruments EDM 960 primary engine data monitoring system Devotees are organized in groups according to geographic region as well as specific airplane types. We're talking about the Twin Comanches, possibly the best-looking, best- performing light twins ever built — and certainly one of the best airplanes for the money. The PA30/39 is covered by an STC for boots - so this is available whether you go with a Miller Conversion or an unmodified PA30/39. • Garmin GTX 33ES ADS-B transponder Is the Twin Comanche a dangerous airplane? The Twin Comanche is a reliable, easy to maintain aircraft with minimal system complexities. โฆ Additionally, after painstaking research, Muncie Aviation obtained the certification needed to install deicing boots, a rare Twin Comanche mod. Early model Twin Comanches, designated PA-30s, came out between 1963 and 1965. The fuel system's woes center mainly on corrosion and contamination of the fuel drains and filters, which have to be checked every 50 hours according to the terms of a 1982 AD. One recommended the installation of wing leading edge stall strips, a rudder gap seal, and an aileron/rudder interconnect system. This highly modified Miller Converted Twin Comanche is equipped with De-Ice Boots, Heated Props and Windscreen Hot Plate. Once out of high school, he worked for a telephone company. My Twin Comanche was the AOPA 2004 win-a-twin sweepstakes airplane. Many of them involved stall/spin situations, and crash investigations indicated that the airplane had an unusually strong inclination to enter an unrecoverable flat spin after slowing below VMC with an inoperative engine. Pepper also had a fascination for guns, an interest that led to a home-based, part-time gun business. • L-3 Avionics ESI-2000 Trilogy electronic standby instrument Yawing moments in engine-out situations are reduced, and low speed handling is greatly improved. The first Twin Comanche PA-30 was delivered in 1963. These units have been converted to the -7 & -8 configuration [o-ring seats]; aka P/N 492-136 and 492-137. The turbo models' empty weight is almost 200 pounds more than their standard-equipped, normally aspirated brethren, so all-engine and single- engine rates of climb are lower (but single-engine service ceiling rises to 8,800 feet), and the useful load of an average-equipped airplane — at 1,341 pounds — is some 50 pounds lighter. One tries to hold on to fiscal discipline while being torn by emotions. Hangared at Madison MS this one is ready for immediate delivery. Another is to install Harlan Associates' 15-inch diameter nosewheel. Nice thought, but nothing beats an up-close inspection of the drained fuel, even if it means getting down on all fours. "But with the way that thing eats gas, I sure wish I had my Twin Comanche back," he said in a recent conversation. Multiengine students in the 1960s usually followed a curriculum that would scare the daylights out of today's multiengine instructors. That's because both propellers rotate to the right, and the right propeller develops more thrust than the left, owing to its comparative surplus of thrust at an arm farther from the center of gravity than the left engine's. A 1982 airworthiness directive (AD) requires that the Rajays' turbine housings be inspected or replaced, if necessary, every 200 hours. Perhaps the highest expression of a modified Twin Comanche is the Bailey Bullet. Lopresti Speed Merchants (800/859-4757) sells its low-drag Wow Cowls (add 8 mph) for the Twin Comanche, along with its pointy Winner Spinners. For a top-of- the-line "Professional" Twin Comanche, you paid about $41,200. All this plane needs is a new home. Die-hard Twin Comanche aficionados will tell you that the secret to a good landing is maintaining the proper airspeed at the runway threshold (about 90 mph/78 knots). They have the Lyc 200hp engines, nose baggage nacelle baggage (looks similar to C310 nacelle baggage. • True Blue Power TA102 USB charging ports. These Miller modifications took the highly rated and sot after Twin Comanche, and made them faster, more capable and added much needed storage. The C models also earned a few knots' worth of extra cruise speed, thanks to engine beef-ups that included better valves and valve guides, and sturdier and better- lubricated crankshafts and camshafts. Armed with fresh A&P and private pilot certificates, Pepper settled in northern Illinois and returned to the phone company. The overhead trim crank remains as a nod to the airplaneâs history. Ham-fist a manually controlled wastegate and you're asking for an early engine overhaul at best, and a catastrophic failure if you're unlucky. The Twin Comanche is an excellent airplane, and its value in the used market continues to rise. And in any event, many pilots let those tubes grow old and discolored (even though they're inexpensive and easy to replace), preventing a view of anything in the fuel. Other service items of concern focus on the landing gear, fuel system, and ailerons. Among them was a 200-hp conversion that used Lycoming IO-360 engines, deice boots, wing locker tanks, and a stretched nose. He flies a Bonanza A36 based at Dulles International. This economic reality adds value to legacy aircraft, especially when they are enhanced by innovative mod shops, STCs, and owners who dare to defy the status quo. The Turbo Twin Comanche B also made its debut in 1965. It is a complex light twin, with retractable landing gear, seating 4 (in original models) to 6 (in later models), and has cruising speeds ranging from 160-210 mph from two 4-cylinder 160 hp (120 kW) Lycoming IO-320-B1A fuel injected engines, but 200 hp (150 kW) engines were available as a modification by Miller Aviation. Narco Mark 12s were de rigueur in the early 1960s, so don't expect too much in the way of avionics sophistication from a standard-issue early Twin Comanche. ©2020 Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. Muncie Aviation also worked closely with MJ Aircraft Interiors in Anderson, Indiana, for the design and installation of a new interior. Creation of the Twin Comanche stopped in 1972 - by which time just the PA-39 was accessible - because of the flooding of Piper's Lock Haven plant. We adapt to your schedule and availability. One quirk has to do with takeoffs. For this reason, many flight schools in the 1960s bought Twin Comanches for use as multiengine trainers. Why would anyone invest so much in a 46-year-old airplane? Some of them are shared with its single-engine counterparts, the PA-24 Comanches, which antedate the twins by six years. Such objectives may seem incompatible in the same airplane, but the truth is that from 1963 to 1972 Piper built about 2,200 airplanes with those characteristics. You can tell a B model by its six seats and third side windows. Many are early PA–30 or –30Bs, and not all of them have the same level of modifications. The options list was expanded to include wingtip fuel tanks, a heated windshield, propeller anti-ice, and an oxygen system. It has the Lopresti cowls, spinners, gap seals, spats, and splitters, plus the Miller nose and a Robertson STOL kit. Miller had an STC for their conversions, but the engine is different, so the mounting, etc, is different. The beveled washers referenced are not used on the 260C, 400, and twin Comanche; those are non-beveled and a different part number. Speed Spinners, Set of Two. He used some of the proceeds of the partial sale to buy a new Mooney 201. From 1970 the Twin Comanche C emphasized a somewhat higher cruising rate and inner part upgrades, while the PA-39 Twin Comanche C/R was fitted with counter turning motors. Membership in the ICS is $40 per year, and this includes a subscription to the monthly Comanche Flyer, a magazine that does a great job of filling you in on routine maintenance topics, as well as techniques for coping with various ADs and service bulletins, and also providing stories about members' flying experiences. In conventional American light twins, the critical engine is the left engine. STC applications for vortex generators and a TKS weeping wing ice protection system are now on hold. • Century 4000 autopilot In 1965, the PA-30B was introduced. The Twin Comanche Miller conversion in flight. One accepted technique for coping with this eagerness to fly is to lift off anyway, then fly in ground effect until airspeed rises above the customary VMC-plus-five target. They include the stainless steel bowls [kit 757-187]; fresh cadmium plating, and look as new. PIPER PA-30B Turbo Twin Comanche (1966 - 1968) Typical Price: $73,377.00 Total Cost of Ownership: $20,346.52 • L-3 Avionics WX-500 Stormscope Currently there is only one Bailey Bullet in existence, and last word was that the Baileys were asking $450,000 for this beauty. Miller Aviation of Texas enable modifications to the Twin Comanche such as an extended nose with a baggage compartment, nacelle lockers, and a 40-horsepower increase per engine utilizing Lycoming’s 200-horsepower IO-360. The groups, called "tribes," come together annually to share information and just plain have a good time. By having the left propeller turn to the right and the right propeller turn to the left, the C/R models eliminate the critical engine. 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