I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

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Rich
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by Rich » Mon Dec 14, 2015 12:56 am

I think even the 40-gallon units probably won't work for you. The problem is CG. Starting with the G1000 units, the DA-40 shifted from a forward-CG-biased airframe to rearward. Be sure to check any specific candidates you might consider for ACTUAL CG realities with your prospective loading parameters. Be sure to consider stuff you'll want to include in the baggage compartment on various flights.
2002 DA40: MT, PF, 530W/430W, KAP140, ext. baggage, 1090 ES out, 2646 MTOW, 40gal.
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by Noah » Mon Dec 14, 2015 7:29 am

Thank you so much everyone for taking the time to write educational replies.

After reading through everyone's post and looking at every DA40 on the market, it appears none meet the requirements. The 50 gallon tanks are on almost all of them (Charbie, thanks for making this clear) and equipment is missing on the rest.

rwtucker, I'd love a copy of the excel sheet you have so I can see if ANY is possible (and if so, watch the market). If I do find one I will want to run through weight and balance on it for sure!

Antoine: Your new plane looks awesome. I've only been reading this forum for a week, and I can see you add incredible value to this community.

I also haven't eliminated a DA42 from my list, so I'll be reading other threads on that one :)

Thank you everyone!
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by Antoine » Wed Dec 16, 2015 4:37 pm

Noah: thank you very much for the compliment.

Do you have friends in Zimbabwe? They have lots of DA40's there. That's because the ZAA is very cool about certain things. For example, if you own a 50 gallon tank DA40 and don't fill beyond 30 gallons, (because your plane is carrying 4 PAX), it is OK to use the full CG range of the DA40 with 40 gallon tanks.
The ZAA's reasoning is that the restrictive CG limit was only set because during certification, the 50 gallon DA40 took half a turn too much to exit a spin.
So, instead of enforcing a rule that crippled the aircraft, they took a yellow marker and highlighted the wording in the POH and on the instrument panel that said "spins are prohibited." No spins, no problems...
Unfortunately nobody outside Zimbabwe is allowed to do that. That's why you NEVER see 4 adults on board a newer DA40, as 90% of them have the 50 gallon tanks and this would almost certainly bust the aft CG limit. 8)
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Si_Zim
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by Si_Zim » Wed Dec 16, 2015 5:47 pm

haha - I am actually from Zimbabwe (hence the username). But I don't think I would fly GA there - or the national carrier for that matter. I don't believe there is a single working radar installation at Harare International.

Noah: If you can do without G1000 then you can get what you want in an older DA40 like we did. 43SE is a 2003 model with GNS 530W/430W - 40 Gal tanks. We added the Garmin ADS-B and FlightStream so it has many of modern avionic niceties even without the G1000 cost/weight. And we can take 4 FAA adults and full gas thanks to the MLG update. Your scenario is easily handled.
Prices should be pretty good compared to 2005 and newer ones if you are able to get a thorough pre-buy inspection and have budgeted for the inevitable expensive first annual. And possibly impending engine OH.
PM me if you need more details - I can break down our experience and costs
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by rwtucker » Wed Dec 16, 2015 6:41 pm

Per discussion, here is one W&B spreadsheet developed by Mark Anastas (zipped to prevent possible corruption). I have a couple of others that produce more less the same results but with different visuals. It would be good to see if others have a different take on this.
DA40XL_W&B.zip
(32.78 KiB) Downloaded 187 times
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Chris B
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by Chris B » Thu Dec 17, 2015 2:29 am

Si_Zim wrote:If you can do without G1000 then you can get what you want in an older DA40 like we did.
IMO, this is a great approach, although I would add the "bubble" canopy to the list of things that you need to do without (or without spending a lot).

If you upgrade an older aircraft you deal directly with the avionics manufacturer for updates. And - for example - can get ADS-B today. :roll:

Imagine if sanity ever prevails and modern "experimental" avionics become available for older certified aircraft. The G3x is essentially a modern implementation of the G1000 at a fraction of the cost.

Chris
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agmolnar
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by agmolnar » Fri Dec 18, 2015 7:40 pm

Quick clarification on this thread. It's not the G1000 platforms per se that made the CG go aft. This was instead driven by other (TAS, other) upgrades that came out with the XL and XLS models. Put another way, there are plenty of 2004 to 2006 DA40s out there with G1000s that have forward CGs (closer to 96.0 than 97.0+). In fact, there are two in our flight club (a 2005 and 2006 model), both with 40g tanks, that fly around with 40 lb weights in the rear luggage compartment. With two heavier folks up front (think student + instructor) and without the added rear weight, they risk having a too forward CG. Those variations can take 4 adults quite easily, but with less range...

A related note on this here:
http://da-40.blogspot.com/2013/06/40-gallons-or-50.html

Best,
Arpad
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Bob C
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by Bob C » Sun Dec 20, 2015 7:56 pm

Another vintage you should look at is the 2005-2006. I have a 2006. My useful load is 890 lbs. with the two blade Hartzel prop. It has 40 gallons of fuel, so the full fuel useful load is a very respectful 650 lb. I fly it regularly between Wisconsin and Florida and usually can make it with two fuel stops, which would be the same if I had the long range 50 gallon tanks. The 50 gallon tanks also shorten up the fore/aft CG envelope significantly. The planes with the standard tanks are almost impossible to get out of CG in any normal configuration. PM me if you would like to talk.
Bob C.
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Lance Murray
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by Lance Murray » Sat Jan 02, 2016 8:34 pm

Take a look at the WIKI on this site for weights of some airplanes. My DA40 (2002 model) has a great useful load and no issues with the rearward CG.

If you want a DA40 with useful load that you can actually use then the steam gage airplanes are good. It is my opinion that these airplanes are actually better then the newer ones. You can add avionics much easier than the G1000 models. My WAAS upgrade only cost me $1,500. The cost to add WAAS to a 2007 is HUGE. I have the TAWS, TCAS, weather etc. and I can take 4 adults and full fuel. Also my airplane is within 5kts of the new airplanes. The bonus is you save $50K and get all of these added bonuses.
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Steven M
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Re: I'd love a DA40, but is there one with enough useful load?

Post by Steven M » Fri Jun 08, 2018 2:33 pm

I have a DA40-180 (2006) and Diamond had a modification available that increased the useful load from 605 lbs to 905 lbs. The modification was to the elevator and while I don't recall what the cost was, I do recall that I thought it was very reasonable. I have the 50 gal. extended range tanks and when I fly with 4 adults I don't carry more than 25 gals. I flew to Alaska about 5 years ago and at 11,500 ft I was getting 122 kts TAS and burning just 6.9 gal/hr. Great plane!
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