DA42 Fuel & Oil

As a gentle reminder,

  • Fuel: If an FBO asks you if you want Jet-A Negative or Positive, it should always be Negative.
    • Positive means that anti-freeze is added to to the fuel, which is totally unnecessary in a light twin, unless you fly at -40°C or even colder flight levels – which is extremely unlikely, even in the deepest winter
  • Oil: When you measure oil, before the necessary second oil dip for the reading you must screw the oil dip all the way back in (and of course wipe the dip stick!)
    • Yes, it’ll cost you valuable milliseconds – but you will get a correct reading. Not screwing it back in will show too low an oil level, which typically results in subsequently overfilling the oil tank, which is not economical and can easily lead to unnecessary MX to figure out where oil drippings are coming from

Thank you for your business!

Twin churn…

By mid October we will likely have onboarded a beautiful, new-to-us DA42 with WAAS (LPVs here we come..!) and GFC700 with yaw damper and a flight director supporting constant airspeed climbs and vertical navigation!

No more constant altitude disARM surprises, and no more intercept overshoots and AP-initiated Dutch rolls on the localizer 🙂

Synthetic Vision will continue to be available and come in very handy on night and IFR flights as well as XM Satellite WX and Radio and USB charging ports (even in the luggage area for passengers in the back!).

It will also feature upgraded brakes (Beringer) to help avoid producing flat spots or even flat tires (braking gently above 50 KTS is still a good idea!), and reclining seats (please handle gently!).

At that point our current two twins (or at least one of them) may have moved on from BFI – we will see.

Stay tuned...!

PS Please please please treat this plane like it was your own, and like it was new. Some DA42 features are notoriously fragile and can be easily broken if not handled with care, e.g. all of the locks on canopy doors and aux tank lids or the seat recliner.

Twin Star: New Taxi / Landing lights

Both Twin Stars have just received new Taxi and Landing light bulbs which are significantly brighter than the ones that were worn out and probably just about half as bright as when they were new.

To help preserve the (not exactly cheap) bulbs, please generally turn off those lights as part of the cruise checks until approach/landing, except for local training flights / practicing maneuvers or to temporarily alert nearby traffic to your presence where using the Taxi light is recommended.

Twin Star gearbox oil level inspection

The gearbox oil level of the CD-135 engines of our Twin Stars is inspected through a small round glass at the prop end of the engine.
We have newer gearboxes on both DA42s: the oil level does not need to be at the top of the glass, but the level is correct when the oil covers (at least) half of the inspection window:

So if you see it at just about half, you’re good to fly!

OIL TEMP on departure

All engine instruments need to be in the green prior to departure. On cooler days – or on the first flight of a day – in can take several minutes all the way into the runup phase before the oil temperature is in the green.

Please be patient, and wait that extra minute or so before taking off so you have a safe flight – treat any aircraft engine life your life depends on it.


3WF is equipped with Garmin’s Electronic Stability and Protection safety system which is activated by default every time you turn on the avionics.

For any and all training flights with the intention to practice flight maneuvers please make sure to deactivate ESP (see the Pre-/Postflight section at the top of the Before You Fly 3WF… page) so as to avoid ending up in a fight with the Autopilot.
The feature will turn itself back on for the next flight, so don’t worry if you forget to re-activate it.

If you intend to fly X/C without maneuver practice there is no action item; ESP will simply be automatically ready to assist should the need arise.

For more information about ESP see chapter 8.10 in the G3X Touch Pilot’s Guide.