View Full Version : Cessna Citaion Bravo experience, known issues...etc
26th May 2012, 06:05
we are looking for some newer suitable Bravo now. We choosed these aircraft after long discussions based on our needs. Does anybody has any experience? I appreciate any kind of advice about known issues, problems or good reviews.
We were thinking about Premier 1A, nice large cabin, good performance, great price but the range is a bit crappy :sad: Yeah, the range is very important, 1200NM leg. The Bravo has 1700NM and we can have newer one for great price. There is a lot of good Bravos on the market.
26th May 2012, 12:24
ISA+ temp, forget F400 or above. Slow speed and you'll be lucky if you can maintain F380 max. Also engine overhaul is pretty expensive for small jet category. It will ruin you when it comes.
26th May 2012, 13:07
Ironically enough, I have flown both of these types in the last few years and I can tell you that you are a bit off with the bravo. I flew the plane for 5 years and I can tell you that unless you put the bravo into long range cruise...(I never did) ... 1200nm is pushing it. There is no way in the world that youll ever see 1700.... Id say with no wind and ISA.... eventually limping up to 450... youll get 1500 at most. The Bravo is a good 1000nm airplane..... We would routinely be flying it 1000nm missions and it never disappointed us. But I can tell you that 1200 is pretty tight running it at max cruise at 410=0.64mach..... I believe long range is 0.58-0.60..... awfully slow. If you could.... Id look at the Encore/Ultra......
The Premier is fun and fast little rocket. The Pilot seats are not very comfortable which shouldnt be a problem as the plane cant stay in the air much more than 2 hours anyway with a VERY light load on board...... You add 6 winter weight males and you are over your max zero fuel weight before you even leave the ground.... The Premier is a great single pilot+2 pax plane.... In canada we run them 2 pilot and that essentially kills the planes utility.... The Premier 2.....hawker 200.... whatever they were gonna call it.... is what the original should have been.
In any case.... the bravo is much better suited for 1000-1100nm missions as the premier wouldnt ever make it. But..... you should be looking at Encore/Ultra......
27th May 2012, 03:56
JPAV8S4U (http://www.pprune.org/members/318625-jpav8s4u) is right. Our company was recently solving similar aircraft purchase but midsize jet. We found out the Learjet 60 is really good one, great performance/operational cost. Try to consider Learjet 40/45. Fast rocket with great range.
27th May 2012, 11:04
there is no comparison with the premier and the bravo... the bravo will give you 1300nm max... premier will give you 450 knots with a nice cabin, only reason we had a bravo was it was cheap and can get into short strips
27th May 2012, 15:56
It's so sad that the Bravo's real range limit for 1200NM leg is on its performance edge. The 1200NM should be our common trip so we have to consider the performence carefully. It also increases hourly cost with long range speed M0.58.
Encore is pretty nice but more expensive than Bravo. For the same Encore budget we can have higher-performance aircraft with better operational cost per hour I guess. Learjet 40XR has really fantastic performance. It can directly jump to F510 with flat engine power up to ISA+28C with cruise speed 465kntos. It's written in a couple reviews at least. I don't know if I can trust these articles. Bravo has also good reviews and personal experience says something else.
28th May 2012, 11:52
wow mate you really need to stop reading the sales brochures...
the lears can go to 51 but i don't know many people who go there all the time... I have flown the encore+ and it goes to 43 no problems at all (says 45 in the book but it sucks up there) but 51 in the lear is a little bit of a push as your has drops off a fair bit....
Have you thought about chartering a couple of the options for the sectors you do a nd see how that goes?
28th May 2012, 12:13
The Bravo was a good airplane, but already dated when it made its debut...in the end, its a Citation II and honestly I fail to see what a CJ2 does not do better than the Bravo apart from more than 6 Pax and probably a few feet more required runway. Ramp appearance, Cabin noise, maintenance and fuel burn, Aircon, Heating,ATC fees, landing fees etcetc. -> all won by the CJ2 in a direct comparison.
I have flown both. (last Bravo flight was in 2005 though)
28th May 2012, 15:58
I flew 2 1998 Bravos between 2001-2007. On both aircraft the Meggit, the standby horizon, had to be exchanged several times. I believe it was 8 or 9 times- per aircraft. This is a no-go item and it is always 25.000 USD or more- in exchange.
I flew a Bravo as a first officer and loved it but do beware the engine costs as they are very high for a small jet!
CJ2 is excellent but you are looking at $3 million minimum?
One aircraft which maybe worth considering if you are budget strapped is the Citation S2. I ferried a late model one to South Africa from Florida and was really impressed with the aircraft.
The normal Citation 2 struggles to climb above FL330 to FL340 heavy and is tight like the Bravo on range.
The Citation 2 carries 4800 ibs of fuel the S2 5800 giving it true long range ability.
It is a bit quicker than the 2 and will happily go to FL390 at grosse takeoff.
It has the 5 wing and is the shortest take off landing Citation.
Downside is the weeping wing deice.
But other than that great aeroplane and great range at low purchase cost!
29th May 2012, 04:05
Currently flying the Bravo, on and off since 2002.
- Getting cheaper to buy (for a reason) good value for the money.
- Very reliable engines (almost bulletproof).
- Docile flying qualities, even a caveman can fly it.
- Good avionics for a small jet.
- You can get full fuel, 4 passengers 1,400NM @<hidden> normal cruise (Flight time around 3:55) ESAD with no problem whatsoever landing with a good - 1,000 pounds reserve, same for 7 pax, can do 1,100 NM (Flight time around 3:10). We artificially limit the range to 1200 NM, we can do that with almost al adverse wind conditions.
- ISA+10 will get you to initial TOC FL390.
- Better than average landing and takeoff distances.
Simple, sound systems, rarely will leave you stranded with an AOG.
Wide coverage for maintenance and service, very good support from Cessna.
- Comfortable enough for 4 pax in a long flight.
- A lot of cargo space, rarely we have to carry any luggage in the cabin.
- Slow, both in normal cruise, worse in long range!
- Engines are very, very expensive to overhaul, more than 400,000 green ones each. to make it worse, the Bravo is the only aircraft who got fit with PW530A engines.
- Depending on your area of operations, (if hot and humid) PFD's are prone to die.
- Parts from Cessna and suppliers expensive, get ProParts or JSSI to try to cope with parts costs.
- Gets cramped with 5 or more people in the back for flights of more than 2:30 (all light jets do).
- Did I mention slow?
This is what i can get from the top of my head writing past midnight, ask if you need more info, also, i have perf statistics documented for all my sectors and actual fuel burns somewhere around, if you need them, just ask.
I you end up seriously looking for a Bravo:
- Get one with the lowest time available (AF and engines).
- Be sure (a must) is on Proparts or JSSI, highly recommend ESP for the engines, but if not, prepare to save money in a big piggy-bank for the overhaul when its due.
- Make the pre-buy as in a Phase I-V, check for corrosion everywhere, specially in the belly and wing root sections (expensive to repair!) and try to make it on MSG-3 to save some downtime and money if you are planning to fly it more than 300-400 hours a year.
Hope it helps.
29th May 2012, 16:25
Thank you to everybody for posting great opinions and suggestions. Esp thank you to supermoix (http://www.pprune.org/members/70070-supermoix)for his Bravo review.
It really helps me with making the decision which aircraft will be the best for us. There is a problem with 1200NM leg limitation and max 10 years old aircraft. We also have a limited budget 3M+. It's hard to find appropriate good jet on the aviation market.
In this saturated business aviation market it's hard to make the big time with a regular jet I guess. It's imortant to offer a little bit more than others. Exactly when you are new in the business and you have to find new clients.
Hopefully this thread stays open and may be it also helps to others with a decision or just like new interesting information.
I really appreciate if you keep posting next interesting information about the Bravo or other comparable jets.
If range is what you are after I would seriously consider the S2. It is like a Citation 2 on steroids with an extra 1000 ibs of fuel.
Fuel burn at 39000 is down to 400 per side and fitted with the 5 wing it is a very underrated aircraft.
The later ones (late 90s) may not be new generation but they will get the job done for what you want.
If not cough up the $3.6 million and buy a CJ2
30th May 2012, 07:51
Late 90s? Wasn´t the last build 1989-90ish?
Don`t know where you are, but IMO the market in that class is so saturrated that with your budget and age requirement there is nothing you could buy to 'stand out'.
The CJ2 is a very good airplane and with haggling you might get a decent one within your price range. The used A/C market does not move much IMO, so there might a nice one for you....
I think you are correct! My wishful thinking but you can still get an early nineties S2 for very little money and it is a very underrated long distance Citation which is low purchase cost, reliable and has a very good range! Speed is about Bravo levels and she is quite a good climber and the shortest takeoff landing citation of its size / weight!
I totally agree on the CJ2 although for a low engine hours example 3.6 mill is the norm.
Cheaper possible but usually a reason.
31st May 2012, 13:50
Just and idea. Contact Sierra Industries and inquire if they will bring an engine conversion for the Bravo to Williams FJ44-x. They have done it already for the older C500 and SII and seem to have great specs (speed, range and economics) at least on paper.
Then if you want a conversion after the original engines reach TBO you can calculate now many hour until TBO would suit you the most in the jet you are buying now.
31st May 2012, 21:05
Cheaper possible but usually a reason.
Not sure if I agree old chap. The market is simply flat, not much moving, albeit a tad better than 2009/10. If there is an owner fed up and wants to sell, he has to go via the price. Too much offers around.
The TO wants an airplane 10 years or younger, the Sierra mods are very interesting, but no 1, 2 or S2 is young enough to make it a 10 year old aeroplane, unless you think a Sierra mod males it a new airplane. (which it essentially does, but...) and I doubt that they will take on the costs for a Bravo mod. Question is, how much would they be able to gain speed and range wise compared to the newer Pratts of the Bravo. But a call won´t hurt I guess...
They offer something, but no engines:
CITATION 550 BRAVO UPGRADES (http://www.sijet.com/citation-550-bravo)
2nd Jun 2012, 00:40
It's a wind up/troll thread...these usually are.
That said, when guys star talking about not getting more then 1200 nm out of a Bravo and dropping 400k a side on overhauls...pretty funny...and not a big surprise why outfits like NetJets keep getting ex-corporate aircraft owners signing up because their plane was managed and flown by buddies, golf pals,or their son's best friend.
It all costs money folks...that's ok...you'll learn...they all do...the hard way.