A 414 to Not Buy

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    My friend found a 414 on Barnstormers that, on the surface, looked like it might be worth considering as a flip opportunity. Out of annual, but stored in a heated hangar. One prop was known bad. So I gave the broker a call.

    The plane hasn’t been annualed since 1987, when the current owner bought it. He’s an “eccentric individual” with no use for the FAA and very anti-authority (the broker’s words, not mine). So he sees no point in annuals, but flies the plane anyway. That means no ADs (exhaust and wing spar come to mind) have been complied with. Gear hasn’t been rigged. Pretty much from what I could tell, no maintenance for the past 27 years unless it broke and needed replacement immediately. AP inop, dual KX155s and no GPS in a short body 414. Both engines about timed out. Left prop overhauled in 1991. No idea how well the pressurization works, if at all.

    Sadly, this plane is effectively worthless other than scrap and some parts of high value like windows. We didn’t even make an offer on it. I said we’d take it as a donation to Cloud Nine, but I think it’d cost too much to get legal to make it worthwhile. Be far cheaper to get a beaten up 421.

    It’s sad to see what otherwise could be a good airplane go to waste. Obviously few people are interested in a short body 414 these days anyway, but this owner spent a lot of money on heated hangar that, if put into keeping the plane current, would make it sellable today.


    Yikes…. you’d have to kidnap an A&P/IA, lock him inside your hanger, feed him food and parts through the window in exchange for paperwork and log book entries… then in about 10 years the plane would be finished, the mechanic gone crazy and nobody would believe his story!

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