Aircraft Appraisal

Home 2024 Forums Opening Section Buying a Twin Cessna Aircraft Appraisal

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      I have a C310 that I would like to know the real value of before putting it up for sale. I am also looking at C340 that I want the same information on. I posted a question on the TSIO-520 NB’s and was rewarded with great information regarding same. Being new to TTCF and your forum is a great resource.
      Being a C310 owner with over 1400 hours in the airplane, I only hope I can be of help to someone else along the way.
      Thank You,



      Hi Dave,

      You can do an evaluation on the AOPA website or you can buy the Vref software or aircraft blue book, all of these let you add up the values of the various installed components to determine the value. The ABB and Vref even let you adjust for the condition of components. You could also hire an appraiser but I would guess that it is probably fairly expensive compared to what you would get out of it.

      Since you have more than one airplane i would go with the vef software you can get a 3 month subscription for a few hundred bucks ($150?).


        Hi Tim, I did see that software but wondered if it would be good enough. I think is was actually about $60, I may try it.

        Thank you,



        The one on the AOPA is a ‘light’ version of the full version of Vref. The full version has a much more complete database of avionics and add ons that the AOPA version does not have and it allows for more price corrections for condition of items. I have typically bought the full version when ever i’ve purchased an aircraft….


        After going through the purchase process as recent as last week (and looking for the 2 months prior), I think the Vref calculators are a good tool (both paid and free versions). With that being said, just taking a comparative sample between the usual suspects (barnstormers, controller, and TAP) will yield the best bet. As long as you are not to emotionally attached to your bird, the numbers in the market should be pretty obvious.


        If you are looking for a certified appraisal please contact me I can help or direct you to someone in our organization of appraisers who would be able to help you.


        What is it with 310 drivers wanting to move up the 340!:D I thought I was the only one! I have a great 310 that I have had since 2008 and have it setup just the way I want it but now want the cabin class, turbo and the pressure. I am new to this site, signed up yesterday and have already gotten double my money’s worth in good advice. I am looking in the central Florida area and found a couple of candidates that I am getting serious about. I can tell you that from having bought my 310 with nothing and added the autopilot and new engines, etc. it is good advice to buy one that someone else has had to swallow the cost of those upgrades. Even if the numbers add up, low cost plus after purchase add-on’s equals good deal, you have to consider the downtime and loss of use.
        Everyone is stressing the pre-buy with a good shop, I was going to get the mechanic that did a lot of my 310 work but after reading some posts here I have changed my mind. Someone on another topic recommended Schmidt at FXE, I had them do an emergency tire repair and found them to be most accommodating and reasonable so I will ask them to do the pre-buy if I get that far.
        One of the 340’s that I found has almost everything I am looking for (they never have it all!). The one missing piece is the A/C, I know it is an expensive add-on but even if the price is right should this be a deal breaker? It has the G430, JPI, Avidye, good paint, interior, low engine time, etc. All the toys for me up front but what is my wife going to experience in the back without A/C? What are the alternatives for cooling in the short term? I have seen portable units advertised at Sporty’s and know that lugging the ice is a pain but do they really work?
        With the market what it is, my thought is that working the selling of my 310 with the broker selling the 340 should give me the best price? Has anyone any thoughts on this?
        Any advice would be appreciated, in the end I might just keep the 310, be grateful that I have a nicely equipped ride and fly on!


        You should figure the cost of adding an a/c unit. The ice chest coolers work fine for aircraft down low but once you get in the flight levels the humidity the ice chest cooler is going to put out will have every window in the aircraft frosted over. I have frosting and I use my a/c unit to pull humidity out of the air, and the heater to minimize it, I couldn’t imagine how bad it would be if I was pumping humidity into the cabin.
        I have bought aircraft both ways; cheap and made it the way I want it, and paid for options already installed. It seems to me, that you either fix what’s there or pay for new either way. I can do some of the work myself so it’s not as bad. Good luck hunting, hope this helps a little.


        I fly a 340A which does not have A/C, never did, and I purchased an arctic air unit. I have found that once above 170 that the unit is not needed therefore I have not experienced the humidity issue. Moreover, the manufacturer states that because the circulating air does not come in contact with the ice there is no increase in humidity. It does a very nice job of cooling, better than most installed systems that I have used, but after about 2 hours it is done and there is the inconvenience of handling the ice. I personally don’t find that to be an issue, but to each to his own. I like the not having to carry the extra weight of an installed unit when it is not needed. I live in Colorado and really only need it for a few months during the year.

        I have owned the 340 for about 4 years and I can say that I have enjoyed this aircraft more than another I have owned. I have owned aircraft since 1962. I owned a 1967 320E RAM I prior to my current machine.

        I shopped for about 2 years before I found what I wanted, therefore I have some ideas about this move, I would be willing to discuss those with you, if interested just PM me.


        Thanks Gary, that is what I read about the Arctic Air units. I realize that what Wilson said is true about units that simply blow air over ice, but the Arctic Air units need water as well as ice. The ice chills the water and then water is pumped into a radiator so all the moisture stays in the cooler. I will PM you to get your thoughts about the 340. I know from 5 years of owning a 310 there is a lot that I could pass on to someone starting out, I imagine you are the same with the 340. I am between Florida and Cape Cod and also Virginia just outside of DC so I am concerned about the temps. My 310 gets hot but we can open the doors and that helps a little.

        Thanks – Barry


        I make frequent trips from Michigan to Texas. Prior to my 421 (with A/C) I flew an AeroCommander (no A/C). I used an Arctic type unit in the commander. Even with short ground times, when it was hot, the commander was pretty miserable.

        (Florida may not be quite as hot as Texas, but close) The Arctic unit helped alot, but it was somewhat of a hassle.

        Flipping the switch on the A/C and having cold air is “priceless”.

        John Koziarski


        Welcome to TCF,
        I understand that you live in S. Florida. One of the reasons to move up to a cabin class plane is to have good a/c. Living in Florida you’ll want a good a/c system. Your spending a lot of money on a new plane, so get one with a/c or install it immediately. IMO, I had an older 414 that had a JB system behind the pilot. When I was in Florida or during the warm season, I would die from the heat. If the plane sits 5 minutes outside in the sun the cabin would heat up into the 100s. That a/c system helped but it wasn’t great. I improved it by having my mechanic make special ducts that came around and pointed at my face. Now I have a 421 with the factory system that has large ducts on the pilot and co-pilot’s arm rests. They work great! My point is, since you live in Florida I would highly consider getting a 73 or later 414 with built-in a/c. You will love the A/C and the extra room too.

        One other thing. I like Schmidt Aviation, but if you’re buying a plane from other parts of the country there are some twin Cessna gurus that I would have do my pre-buy.
        Good luck.


        John, Texas does get hot, but even in Virginia 75 degrees heats up my 310 in short order. I would only consider the Arctic Air as a temp solution. Garmin Panel, good A/P and lower time engines on my short list of must haves. Factor in JPI, Weather (XM and/or Radar) and the A/C and you usually don’t get them all. While costly A/C would be one thing that it would be nice to have a newer version of given all the changes with EPA since the 340’s were built.

        Just starting my hunt so I will keep looking and making the trade offs!

        Thanks for the advice – Barry


        SGERBER, I agree, I can only imagine a few minutes in there with it all shut up waiting for a clearance! The 414 would be nice but I am having a hard time trading up to the 340 since it sits a lot. I go between, Florida, Virginia and Cape Cod. It is usually my wife and I and our beagle, so just the extra room in the 340 should do. I am only considering Schmidt as I have a condo in Pompano and the AC is in Sarasota. I would definitely be looking for another shop if the plane was elseware. One post here and I know I will be able to get good recommendations.

        I just found this site and have learned so much, even if I stay with my 310 I know I can learn a lot here.

        Thanks – Barry


        Have you found a specific 340 that you can trade your 310 for? Has that 340 been sitting? If so, a plane sitting around in Florida is a whole other bag of worms. If I am misunderstanding your last post and you are out shopping for a plane the price difference between tip-tank 414s and 340s may be negligible, and the cost to operate are virtually identical.

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