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Old 2nd Mar 2005, 10:12   #1 (permalink)
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Australia
Posts: 15
Best 6 seater single engine aircraft


I would really appreciate other people’s thoughts on what they have found to be the best six seater aircraft they have flown/operated.

From what I have discovered the Cessna 210 or Beech 36 seems to be a favourite for speed, the Cherokee Six or Cessna 206 for space.

I am interested in reading views on what aircraft they believe delivers or has delivered the best balance of speed and payload.

Does the Airvan GA-8 fall into anyone’s favour? The Cessna 185? Piper Saratoga?

Thanks in advance and looking forward to reading your input.
onfinals_34L is offline  
Old 2nd Mar 2005, 13:38   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Scotland
Posts: 96
Can highly recommend the Cherokee 6. Had one for years. 6 up, full fuel and some baggage. Still within limits. Good legs (7 hours), excellent in the cruise and easy enough to get into shorter strips. Fixed gear makes for limited cruise speed (110 kts) but easier/cheaper servicing. Top machine
Beagle-eye is offline  
Old 2nd Mar 2005, 15:43   #3 (permalink)
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: London
Posts: 392
Cessna 206 are excellent aircraft. A friend of mine has one with an engine conversion to the 350hp turbo and that will pull 6 people and all the bags you can fit in it and full fuel out of a 500m strip no problem.

I do a lot of short field stuff, high wing aircraft are designed for the job. Cessna 210's are also very good but you've got rectractable gear which add's to servicing.

Can't say much about Pipers because never flown anything bigger than an Archer. 110kts sounds very slow, my mate with the 206 mentioned above claimes 135kts comfortable cruise. The 210 will do 160+

Operating in the UK? Own an oil well?? they all drink it!!
nouseforaname is offline  
Old 2nd Mar 2005, 16:41   #4 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Beyond the black stump!
Posts: 1,144
Without a doubt, the Cessna Caravan.

Best 6 seater around!
Cyclic Hotline is offline  
Old 2nd Mar 2005, 19:49   #5 (permalink)
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Posts: 54
The 210 is the ultimate of all single engine six seater's. You can put 6 adult's, full fuel ( for 900nm ) , and bag's and still use no more than 500m of the black stuff. I remember seeing the VSI somewhere around the 800fpm mark with the load i stated above.

So what you have a retractable undercarriage isn't it a bonus ? All that drag from a 206. And besides the 210 sound's great.
aerobatic_dude is offline  
Old 3rd Mar 2005, 13:55   #6 (permalink)
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Haywards Heath
Posts: 83
Be sure you are going to regularly carry more than four people before you commit to a six seater. Expect the six cylinder engines to burn at least 16gph of Avgas. A four hour trip becomes a much more costly concern than it would in a four banger like an Archer at 10gph!
Ojuka is offline  
Old 3rd Mar 2005, 21:18   #7 (permalink)
Join Date: Feb 2005
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The 210's book state's 170kts TAS @ 7000ft for 13GPH.

Or if you go for the T210R 207kts @ 75%
aerobatic_dude is offline  
Old 3rd Mar 2005, 21:45   #8 (permalink)
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Garsfontein, Pretoria
Posts: 76
On average I get 165kts with a 15gph burn.

207kts?!?!? Would like to get hold of that 210!
Christo is offline  
Old 4th Mar 2005, 08:57   #9 (permalink)
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: London
Posts: 392
retractable undercarriage on older cessna's req. a good crowd to do all your servicing. If you go for a 210 make sure you avoid the gear doors. Heard some stories about those things, not worth it for the extra performance. I fly a turbo 182 and it burns 15gph + @ 10,000ft so if you are getting 13gph out of a 310hp aircraft then I thing your cooking it mate!
nouseforaname is offline  
Old 4th Mar 2005, 11:31   #10 (permalink)
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Belgium
Posts: 475
I have owned a PA32-300 for 4 years. It is a good aircraft with good payload and 130 KTAS, flies like a truck or a minibus if you like.

Switched to a BE36 after that, 35 Kts faster on less fuel, most excellent handling characteristics, very well built, excellent visibility, excellent access to rear with double door, convertible club seating..

It's like comparing a VW minibus with a Ferrari, each have their own character and uses.

What is your mission profile, your budget?
dirkdj is online now  
Old 4th Mar 2005, 23:55   #11 (permalink)
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Posts: 54
Then you can have a Turbine 210 that does 215kts.
aerobatic_dude is offline  
Old 5th Mar 2005, 02:15   #12 (permalink)
Join Date: May 2004
Location: RPLL
Age: 48
Posts: 30
my 1968 Cessna 206 c-model has 9000total hours, and is just so reliable. Bought it 3 years ago, used it for fish charter for close to 2000 hours, and got an offer for 30percent more than what i paid for it. 15gph at 130knots. you just can't go wrong with a 206.
jonjie is offline  
Old 5th Mar 2005, 10:48   #13 (permalink)
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Kendal, UK
Age: 51
Posts: 248
Got to be...

Got to be a Bonanza A36.

I agonised over the choices for ages. I wanted a reasonably fast (faster than my 182) 6 seater that could carry 6 adults or more often 2 adults and four kids.

I tried a C210 and liked it and it was happy at 160 Kts but I couldnt help feeling it was just a 182 with two seats crammed in the back. I did like it though.

I then tried a 2001 Bonanza but was put off by the cost. I thought they looked dreamy and were fantastic inside. Like a proper modern aeroplane cockpit but didnt seem to have too much baggage room.

I then tried a P210 which I thought would be ideal with a 200Kts cruise speed and pressurization but I realised that they were ridiculously cramped inside and not practical to use as a six seater. Passengers have to climb over each other.

I then decided to have another look at an A36 but a bit older than the first one and started looking around the 1984 onwards models but with low hours. They were all in the U.S. so I was going to organise a trip when somebody showed me a 1993 model with extremely low hours and 2 garmin 430's, Stormscope and loads more and although it was way over my budget I went to see it in Berlin and fell in love. I came back trying to work out how my budget could stretch and tried to haggle with the owner. It ended up with me having to do loads of stretching and a lot of explaining to my good lady but I can safely say it was worth it.

The A36 is a wondeful aeroplane and once you have flown one and appreciated the quality you would not want a Cessna although I acknowledge they are still very good. All A36's from 1984 are essentially the same as that was when they last updated them.

They feel very solid compared to a Cessna (or Piper) and are made out of better materials. The switches clunk and the controls are oh so smooth. The plane lands itself and looks so good on the ground.

Outside of pressurised cabin class planes the A36 has to be king for me.

This is my plane. If you want any more info on Bonanzas or indeed what I know about Cessna 210's just PM me and I will give you my phone number. If you are still interested in a 210 I have a buyers guide.

A36 Beech Bonanza
stuartforrest is offline  
Old 5th Mar 2005, 11:20   #14 (permalink)
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Belgium
Posts: 475
My A36 is a 73 model and have just over 4000 hours since new. Runs like a clock.

My hangarmate has a 1978 model, recently installed the TAT turbonormalizer with Superior IO550. On one of the first test flights we went to FL170 and clocked 211 KTAS on 17 USGPH, lean of peak. Climb averaged 1000 fpm.

If you google for "C-GFLD A36" you will find a very nice sample of the breed.
dirkdj is online now  
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