July 24, 2009
By Alton K. Marsh
Usually pilots roll their eyes at the poor mileage they get from the airplane they own or rent. The number is usually bad, but that’s not the case with the Continental 125-hp IOF240 engine recently tested by the manufacturer. A recent test in level cruise shows the FADEC computer-controlled engine got 30.7 mpg.
On the return flight there were altitude changes and diversions because of weather, so the mileage dropped to 24.4 mpg. Think of it as “city” mileage. The engine was aboard a Diamond DA20 that was flown from Mobile, Ala., (Continental headquarters) to Jacksonville, Fla. Lest you think the pilot simply pulled the throttle back so the engine would sip gas, instead of chug it, the average speed over the full 678.6 nm course was 119 KTAS. The manufacturer claims 138 KTAS at 75 percent power. The DA20 Continental used was flown at the FADEC best-economy setting, which is 50 percent power.
AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Alton Marsh has been a pilot since 1970 and has an airline transport pilot certificate and instrument and multiengine flight instructor certificates, aerobatic training, and a commercial seaplane certificate.
As the cold weather chills AOPA’s Headquarters in Frederick, many of us are inside generating new resources for flying clubs.
In my house, every Friday night is “Movie Night.” While the movies are rarely educational (I don’t think I learned anything from the Lego Movie), we look forward to the weekly opportunity to spend time together. Why not use the same concept for your Flying Club (with the addition of education, of course)?
AOPA Flying Club Manager Kelby Ferwerda posted the following on the AOPA Flying Club Facebook Page: “Recently I’ve talked with quite a few Flying Clubs about maintaining social activity through the cold winter months. Some clubs host Holliday Parties, others have Potluck Movie Nights. What does your club do to keep members involved during the chilly months?”
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