I went back to Wichita, Kansas to check on the progress of our first Citation Mustang. The Airplane has just been painted and the interior components have arrived. Cessna says that the Airplane will be ready for delivery on 22nd of April. I went to visit our chief pilot who lives in the Tampa area. He is now contracted to us and is currently at FlightSafety International Citation Learning Center where he will be doing the Mustang Pilot Initial training.
(Me and the Mustang I flew to Independence, on Cessna tarmac at Wichita)
The Citation Mustang production is located at Cessna's facility in Independence, Kansas and we flew their demonstrator Mustang from Wichita to Independence. The weather has been real nasty in that neck of the woods and as this goes into posting, the weather has worsened and large parts of the US midwest is literally underwater. Heavy rains has caused extensive flooding. When I was in Wichita last week, there was enough indication that the weather was going to get worse. The good thing is that we flew over to Independence when it was still marginal.
(On the way to Independence,taxiing out of the Cessna tarmac)
Our Mustang is painted Sterling silver and Blue on the outside and Sterling interior. It's new Garmin 1000 all glass cockpit suite is a cinch to use. The large panels PFD and MFD makes it easy to use and bring up everything from weather radar to Terrain alert and Traffic Alert system. Moving maps make it easy for navigation. There are several nice features that include airport situational maps that can be used to navigate around an airport easily. A little airplane pictogram on the airport map moves along taxiways and indicates actual airplane position on the airport.
(Our Mustang is serial number 70-at the paint shop they pencilled it on the masking)
(At the paint shop-our Mustang)
The Citation Mustang is a short take off and landing airplane. It's twin Pratt and Whitney jet engines allow good cruising speeds of 340 Knots and the airplane can make a maximum altitude of 41,000 feet. I made friends with a good guy who delivers Mustangs World-wide and also acts as a FlightSafety instructor. Andre' and his lovely wife Sarah are good people to be friends with and it was fun talking about aviation experiences. The day I returned from the Independence trip, Andre' was kind enough to take me to the FlightSafety Simulator for the Mustang and demonstrate the same. My experience with the simulator was a fun one, Andre' simulated single engine failures for me during take off and I had to bring it back in for a single engine landing. The Sim is actually a lot more sensitive that the real airplane. This is supposedly an FAA requirement to ensure that pilots can handle and skiddish situation in the airplane. The Mustang sim at FlightSafety is a new technology full motion three axis facility that operates on screw jacks rather than the hydraulic ones used before in other simulators. This is smoother and more real in feeling when the sim is operated.
(Our new cockpit and unfinished interior)
I'm headed back to Independence sometime towards the delivery date. The delivery of a new airplane comes with it's paperwork and ceremony. Photo sessions and handing over, acceptance flights and other fun stuff becomes a part of the process. Needless to say, yours truly is as excited as a 10 year old with a new airplane toy. I plan on adding more airplane to the fleet this year and the next. Back in Singapore, it's back to business and this week will see me going to Jakarta and Bangkok. There's loads of stuff to do in preparation for the arrival of our new airplane and it's tough to find time to blog. However, I will blog about the delivery of the airplane as it happens and subsequently during the ferry flight. Cheers.