You know, the Beechcraft Baron is a plane that reminds George Clooney. Even 50 years later, this icon is still seen as a celebrity, and now I mean the Baron. The plane started its activities in the mid-1960s, and has a lot of historical baggage, and it is full of strategic updates that have made it one of the most winged aircraft of all time. Looking at it it is hard to think that at his launch, John F. Kennedy would be becoming president, 101 Dalmatians would be being launched and other things. His story began in 1961 with the B55. The shortest, lightest and least powerful model was certified the time. It was the right model, for the right time, since the fuel was pretty cheap (and he was pretty much gaston), and he had the popular advantages of a twin engine compared to his brother, the Bonanza. The model was produced until the mid-80s, as the current version, the 58, began to be produced in 1970. The model had until then two Continental of 285 hp.
The current fifty, the 58, was based on the A36, which already had a longer fuselage, and a larger rear entrance door, in addition to an update on the engines that gave it a few more hps. He was faster, sleeker, comfortable, and in some way, substantially more handsome than the 55, or 56 (which lasted little in this story). In the mid-’76, new, more vivid versions began to appear. It was then that the iconic 58P, also known as ‘the Cougars’ were born. This is a conversion of the model, with two beautiful P & W PT6A. Beech also produced within 76-86 about 500 pressurized Barons, with a pair of Continental TSIO-520, with 325 hps each, however at any time you could have 1000shp (check production … if you accelerate too much, the engine leaves the cradle !?) power adapting its model to the PT6s.
In the mid-’84 all were adapted to industry standards, then with the new power quadrants and losing their signature of two unique bar tacks, typical of the Beech models. A leap up to 2005 takes us to a model almost reinvented. The current G58 was born as the first bi-engine with integrated avionics, that is, those navigation pendants that make the flight more assisted, backed by glasscockpit technologies. Amongst fantastic paintings and commemorative editions, the model has even a considerable safety record.
The Baron tends to respond very predictably to specific power settings, attitude and flaps, as well as the landing gear. So it’s a model where you fly ‘by the numbers’, which reduces the workload and allows managerial flight with greater situational awareness and focus. Soon, the pilot who flies in the attitude, following the guidebook, will be happy. Some riders have experienced bad times with crashes in IMC and stall, most common accident conditions of the model.
A few things should be noted about the G58, such as the not being a turbocharged model, and not having a model of the type available (which I particularly think is a shot in the foot). Therefore, this puts you in a complicated situation with the market alternatives, in addition to making it slightly less versatile than other models in the category. In addition, a brief comparison between categories, the G58 with its robust 600 hps of power, does not take the plane to be more veils than the SR-22 or Corvalis. Therefore, in a country like Brazil, where aviation fuel is frighteningly expensive, this makes the model a financial and operational weight for short stages and low payload, since the extra fuel is almost doubled.
Despite this, the model offers a good climb rate (1700 fpm), especially when you lose an engine, that of course, compared to the Cirrus and Cessnas mono engines mentioned above. 😉 This model still carries about 640 kg of payload, which allows even the airplane with 6 passengers of 90 kg each (another low blow for the hurries above), still has approximately 100 kg of free load. The power adjusted for maximum speed takes the model to 202 kt, however only configured for maximum autonomy takes the model to about 1500 nm away.
The George Clooney of the bi motors still had a series of interesting updates in the last versions. Starting with the conversion to glass cockpit, which produces a considerable increase in situational awareness. In addition, the new models feature more durable and light-emitting led lamps, windshield heater, a completely redesigned interior, and digital air conditioning.
In addition the model has some versatility, which in the humble opinion of the Aeroblog, make it as unique as a Grumman. Between additional options like winglets or the quadri-spade option, the model has a distinctive sound, which makes fans of aeronautical religion shiver with their passing.
Fly Safe, Folks.