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Piloting, Owning and Operating a Beech Bonanza A36 - www.gotoair.com

This is the story of owning and operating a 1993 Beech Bonanza A36 in the UK and some of its adventures and flights. I have owned this plane for over six years now.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016


G-FOZZ, my beautiful Beech Bonanza A36 has been sold

G-FOZZ was unfortunately sold to a buyer in Austria in August 2016. I hadnt been able to fly very much at all due to an illness to one of my family members and because of the Brexit nonsense and the change in our currency, the asking price had been cheaper for a German buyer (who lives in Austria). A deal was duly agreed and I delivered the plane to it's new home at Zell-Am-See. An amazing flight that I will treasure forever. It was my longest and most interesting flight and unfortunately my last one. I am not giving up flying, just me and flying are taking a time out until I can find another plane and sort out my family issues. I am going to post a blog of my last flight in G-FOZZ soon.

Thursday, July 17, 2014


Latest 50 hour Check

Here is the bill for our latest 50 hour check.

16 JULY 2014                                                                                   16071401           

To 50 Hour Check and defect rectification
On A36 Bonanza G-FOZZ

Standard 50 Hour check Single Engine Retractable            350.00

1 x Filter CH48109                                                                 26.00

12 Qts AD 80 Oil                                                                    86.00

1 x Sealed Beam Taxi Light   GE4591                                   37.87         

Remove and service brake callipers and fit new seals.

                                                                       Seals                 8.00

Call out and repairs to nose wheel puncture.    

Additional Labour   6 Hours @ 45.00                                   270.00   

                                                   SUBTOTAL.                       777.87
                                                                VAT.                      155.58

                                                              TOTAL                  £933.45           

Wednesday, June 11, 2014


My longest flight this year and for some time to Stornoway in the Western Isles

Yesterday I undertook a flight that really shows off the utility of a Beech Bonanza.  I flew at 11am from Blackpool to arrive for a meeting in Stornoway Isle of Lewis in the most North Western tip of Scotland with one passenger. The arrival time was 1pm.

Here are the details of the flight:

Flight time was 1.59 minutes on the way out for 334 Nautical Miles
I intended to fly low at 1000ft all the way but was beaten by daft danger zones that made me have to pass too close to Lake District mountains that were shrouded in cloud.  I quickly climbed to 4500ft to pass over the Lake District and ended up staying at that level all the way.  We were in and out of clouds along the way.
The average ground speed was 166 knots.
Power settings were 2200rpm and 22 inches of manifold pressure.

The return journey today was in better weather but with a slight headwind.
We did 318 miles this way on a more direct route and flight time was 1 hour 58 minutes.
I flew at 8000ft to get on top of a broken layer of cloud until I had to descend to 5000ft to pass under an airway at Stranraer.  I then remained at 4000ft until Walney Island.
The average ground speed this way was 161 knots.
Power settings were 2200rpm and 22 inches of manifold pressure. We were flying ROP. We could have saved fuel for a slight increase in flight time by flying LOP.

We burned a total of 61.5 US gallons of fuel on the trip or 233 litres at a rough cost of £447.00.

We couldnt get fuel on the Isle of Lewis as the refueller had gone home early.  On our return to Blackpool we had 12.5 gallons of usable fuel in the tanks or roughly 45 minutes at the same speed.

The left tank was showing 1/8th of a tank of fuel and the right tank was showing nearly 3/4 of a tank.  DONT EVER TRUST THE FUEL GAUGES ON THE BONANZA A36 AND ESPECIALLY NOT G-FOZZ!  I always like to check the fuel burn on flights so I can calculate what I could have used out of the fuel available at the start.

For reference the guy I was meeting in Stornoway flew from Glasgow and his flight on FlyBE cost £375 for one person.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014


New EASA licence

Well I have finally made the plunge and instead of a crusty old 19 year old CAA licence I have a shiny new EASA licence.  I hope there is some point to this. Maybe one day they will do the new improved Instrument Rating and then I will be a happy bunny.

Anyway for now I am now part of EASA land!

Monday, March 03, 2014


Renewal of SEP and IMC rating

I managed to fly G-FOZZ on Friday and renew my single engine piston and IMC rating and the last day before expiry.  The weather was magnificent and I really enjoyed the flights and a bit of refresher training.  Hopefully now I can get some great flights in this summer with the Forrest family.


New bill for the annual.

Today I got the bill for this years annual which took about 6 weeks due to waiting for parts and also waiting for a surveyor to come and "survey" the aircraft.  Clearly the cost of bureaucracy in this case is around £800 here or about 15% of the bill.

There is a fee for someone to check the work of the mechanic who has always superbly maintained my plane.  Now it needs signing off by someone else.

There is a fee for the CAA to issue the paperwork and there is a fee to "check" the radios.

It really angers me that aviation is crippled by such stupid charges.  I dont need to get my mobile phone checked each year. If it stops working I use my spare and buy a new one!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013


Hidden cost of plane ownership

I got a bill today for some maintenance items that relate to compulsory replacement for some things and wear and tear for others.  It is a very large mid term bill.

To 50 Hour Check and Lifed Component replacement
On A36 Bonanza G-FOZZ

Standard 50 Hour check Single Engine Retractable            350.00

1 x Filter CH48109                                                                 22.00

12 Qts AD 80 Oil                                                                    86.00

8 x Wing bolts and 8 x Nuts (NDT)
Mag particle Inspection.                                                       180.00          

8 x New Wing nuts DHN35-12                                              970.80

Postage.                                                                                 30.00

R.H. & L.H Exhaust Tailpipes                                             1280.22

1 X Fuel Selector Valve assembly.                                     1731.72

1 x Airframe Log Book                                                            20.00

Additional Labour   24 Hours @ 45.00                                1080.00   

                                                   SUBTOTAL.                     5775.74
                                                                VAT.                     1125.15

                                                              TOTAL                 £6900.89

Monday, September 02, 2013


Compass Swing

Today we had to complete the compass swing on G-FOZZ. The cost was £180.00


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