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Thread: Beaver question

  1. #1
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    Default Beaver question

    Could someone tell me what an appropriate runway length would be for a beaver with a 1000 lb load ? Looking to land on a lake that has a 2850' straight away and for take off has about 4200' of usable water . Thanks

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    Performance chart for a standard Beaver fully loaded suggests that landing over a 50' obstacle is 1510 feet. Take off over 50' obstacle is 1610. You could land twice and take off two and a half times in the lake you're describing.
    I don't know what you're looking for, but I assume a 206 could do that drop for a lot less money.

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    Yeah maybe but I don't think it can handle the weight and have enough fuel to turn the trip at least from what I see on AOPA.

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    As I am sure some of the Beaver drivers here will tell you, Beavers do get off the water fairly short for as heavy as they are, but they do do really climb all that well right after lift off. What type of hills and humps are surrounding your mystery lake? Are they less than 200-300 feet higher than the lake? Are there escape paths?
    How high is the lake (above sea level) ?
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    Well if we can use the 2850' straight away once above the trees its 3 miles to the nearest bump or hill. You can actually run a river drainage for 10 miles once you are above tree level . Once you hit the hills they go from 400 to 800 feet. The lake is 100 feet above sea level.

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    Gee, that would be a float-pilots dream lake... even an overloaded C-206 would do just fine..

    How large is the equipment you need to have dropped off?
    From how far away does the load have to hauled?
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    2850 with a 1000 lb load is not a problem for a beaver. Look on Google earth and measure Lilly lake in Kodiak. Many a Beaver been off that lake with 1000 lbs and front tank and a splash, pilot and single passenger. I think that lake is only about 2200 feet if my feeble memory is correct. Which lake are you looking at?

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    A buddy and I are planning a moose hunt up north just gear no large objects. The biggest thing is the raft and that packs down to 30"x24". A beaver run would only be about 240 mile round to grab a 206 and do it it would be a 500 mile turn . I know a maule has been in and out of there before not heavy, but thats not a beaver. I think I would be pushing it in a 206 though , it would need all the fuel it could handle to make that turn no? I saw somewhere that max take off weight for a 206 was like 3600 with a tare weight of 2700 and change. That wouldn't leave much room for fuel . Six hours of fuel at 6.4 gph =38.4 gallons plus and hour for safety = 44.8 gallons x 6.02= 297 lbs minimum right?Thats for the 206. We'd be over by like 400 lbs

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    No C-206 that I have ever flown will only burn 6.4 gallons per hour. Maybe while idling. Most run between 14 to 15 gallons an hour as a working average. So about 93 pounds of fuel per hour.

    A Beaver burns between 19gph at 21 inches and 1700 rpm,,, to 27 gallons per hour depending on how hard you push them. So about 140 pounds of fuel per hour if you average 22-24 gallons per hour.

    I flew a Amphib Turbine Otter with a PT6-27 turbine and that darn thing burned almost 300 pounds of fuel per hour dragging those heavy amphib floats around. But it was a little faster than a piston Beaver. 10-15 knots faster in cruise.
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    Ok thank you for that , I was just going by the data I found on AOPA website for the 206 . I stand corrected.

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    I figure my fuel burn in a Beaver @ 26/gph and 16/gph in a 206.

    FloatPilot, can you fly a Beaver with 21" of MP? I'm generally at 28" in cruise unless I'm flaps down.

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    FloatPilot, can you fly a Beaver with 21" of MP? I'm generally at 28" in cruise unless I'm flaps down.
    No, only in a long slow descent, or slowing down in the pattern at 21or 20/1700 with carb heat.. I was only using that as an example of a bottom fuel consumption number, figuring 24-26 gallons per hour being more average in cruise at 28 /1800 or 1900 depending on the air temp, which plane, ect....

    I saw one in Canada once that did not have the regular P&W R-985, it had what they said was a Polish made PZL-3S, 600 HP, with a big four blade prop. I always wondered how their fuel consumption was on that rig? I was just stopping in for gas and never got to see them fire it up..
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    If I were to guess, wildone was a dispatcher at a company I worked for," you have enough gas- tankering cost us too much" famious quote. LOL
    Wildone, give a Airtaxi operator that works in the area you want to go, tell him the load you want to carry and he will tell you what he can do. The guys that do this everyday have the anwser's for you and have operated in and out of the lake you are talking about. I say this because any lake that big is regularly flown, unless its in Russia.

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    Nope not a dispatcher. Given the info the guys poted above it sounds pretty certain it can be done. I have contacted 2 taxis in the area and niether of them have landed there before and they are the only 2 up that way. Thaks for the help guys I appreciate it much.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wildone View Post
    Yeah maybe but I don't think it can handle the weight and have enough fuel to turn the trip at least from what I see on AOPA.
    Yes it can.

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    I dunno - 500 miles in a 206 on floats is 4+ hours at 17 gph plus reserves that is a min of 75 gallons. Which is 450 lbs. Add in a pilot at 180 lbs and you are at 630 before you ever get to the pax and gear. Average useful load of about 1430lbs - so the two pax and gear would have to be under 800lbs.

    Do-able I guess; but tight. We used to advertise 750 lbs to our customers. And that was typically for trips of 150 miles or less one way. As far as getting out of a 2850' lake probably also do-able in a 206 depending on the density altitude. 206's are notorious for their lack of performance at any kind of altitude at all. Also depends on the floats. But any good operator will have Aerocets or Edo 3430s.

    Now the return flight (to get you home) would be a different story. The gas would be lighter (34Gal/204Lb) and the pax would have eaten or drunk most of the food, but that weight change is rapidly overcome by game meat weight. And 2850' is pretty tight for a fully loaded 206 especially if there is any altitude to the lake. Is there a bigger lake close by that one could shuttle too? Coming from the airtaxi base of operations to pick the pax up, the pilot could carry extra gas, drop it in the larger lake, go make a couple of shuttles out of the 2850' lake, then fuel up for the trip home.

    Not sure what the current rates are anymore, but even with the difference in mileage and the shuttle, it still may be a bit cheaper in the 206. We used to charge $575/hour for the Beav and $285/hour for the 206. Figured the Beaver on floats at 90 mph and the 206 on floats at 115 or so. Doing the math then, means a 240 mile trip for the Beaver would be 2+45 hours or $1540. The 500 mile trip in the 206 would be 4+18 or $1240 plus whatever the shuttle costs (if needed).

    Some other things to check - what is the depth of the lake? Translated that means how much of the 2850' is actually usable? The altitude of the lake is important as mentioned before (but much less so with the supercharged Beaver). Trees at the ends has been mentioned once I think. How about width of the lake eg. could you do a step turn to takeoff? Also lilly pads. prevailing wind etc will all be a factor.

    What would concern me most, say as a "new guy" pilot at these airtaxi's is - "why has no one ever gone in there before?" To me that would be a big red flag and I would do lots more research and planning than normal.

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    And is the lake even legal to land on? Since supposedly nobody goes there....
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