FLIGHTCHECK

Hawker 4000: $21 mil, Mach .84, FL450, 3280 nm, 8–10 seats

Recently certified with deliveries accumulating, 4000 boasts Primus Epic, 2 PW308As, 1600-lb payload with full fuel.


Five 10 x 8-in Honeywell Epic LCD panels maximize flightdeck functionality. Standard configuration includes dual IRS/FMS/GPS and single HF.

I found the flightdeck spacious, the pedestal easy to step over and both the seats and armrests comfortable.

Avionics and controls are well laid out, the five 10 x 8 in Honeywell Epic LCD displays are highly readable and efficiently organized and I liked the location and operation of the cursor control device (CCD).

Hawker Beechcraft plans to offer a jumpseat option and this will be a nice feature so that the boss can come up, set down and talk for a while. My only complaint with the flightdeck is a window post that’s right in your side field of vision, between the windshield and side window, but this is something pilots will adapt to.

Engine start was simple with a one-button push to activate APU. With Mills in the right seat we taxied out for takeoff on SMO’s Runway 21. I really like the steer-by-wire nose wheel steering of the Hawker 4000—they’ve got that working great and turn radius is exceptionally good on the ground.

I was also extremely impressed with the brake-by-wire systems. They’re not at all grabby and you can feel the pressure that you’re applying—a nice feature.

Flying the Hawker 4000

Departing SMO IFR at 32,000 lbs (81% of MTOW), with 8000 lbs of fuel and 2 passengers, we were initially cleared to 3000 ft. The Hawker 4000 climbs so fast you have to be careful initially and be prepared to level off well in advance.

A product of HBC’s LIT (Little Rock AR) completion facility, the Hawker 4000 cabin provides high end finishings and a spacious walk-around cabin.

After reaching 16,000 ft we cancelled IFR for steep turns and 2 approaches to stall. In clean configuration shaker came on at 121 kts and with gear down and flaps 20 shaker was exactly where it was supposed to be at 111 kts.

Speed brakes on the Hawker 4000 are infinitely adjustable, with no detents, and can be deployed with flaps out to 20°. Ground spoilers are activated on wheel spin-up. Takeoff flap settings are zero, 12 and 20 with landing flaps 35.

Gear can be extended at 230 kts and flaps to 35° at 180 kts. Approaching BFL (Bakersfield CA) I did a quasi-emergency descent with full spoilers at 250 kts which had us coming down better than 5000 fpm.

In typical emergency descent—with full spoilers at redline of 350 kts—we’d have come down real fast. First landing at BFL was a touch and go with flaps 20 and Vref 120 kts.

After our second landing—this time a full stop—we taxied back for takeoff and Mills pulled an engine after takeoff. I left gear down a few seconds longer than usual to check climb with gear down.

The 4000 climbed like crazy at our gross weight on one engine. Leaving the BFL area we step climbed, due to traffic, and leveled off twice on our way to FL 380. Fuel burn at FL 380 and Mach 0.82 was right on book numbers at 950 lbs per side and we had cabin pressure of 4200 ft at 9.62 psi.

APU access—through large clam shell doors at the rear of the fuselage—is straightforward with a large aft hatch and integrated ladder.

I tried the autopilot for the first time and the system is obviously well tuned as the 4000 flew so smoothly. Autothrottles, standard with the Hawker 4000, are as smooth or smoother than any aircraft I’ve ever flown and they don’t hunt—which is something I like! Autothrottles are a nice feature for longer flights when you’re trying to make constant Mach.

The flightdeck was very quiet with virtually no aerodynamic noise from the wraparound windshield. Moving back to the cabin I found it very quiet. We let down VFR to SMO Rwy 21 flying on autopilot until 3000 ft AGL.

Speed bleeds off slowly at full flaps and with power back we came down nicely. I was 5–10 kts over Vref on landing but idle reversers and light braking made the 4973-ft runway seem very adequate.

Systems

The Hawker 4000 features an all-composite fuselage with excellent immunity to fatigue and corrosion and has no life limitation. Aluminum wings are aft-loaded for optimum high-speed characteristics, superior cruise and range performance as well as outstanding low speed capabilities.

PW308As produce 6900 lbs thrust per side up to ISA+22 and feature full FADEC, a 3000-hr hot section and 6000-hr overhaul. Standard APU is inflight capable. A well-equipped flightdeck configuration offers full overwater capability with dual IRS/FMS/GPS and single HF standard.

Pratt & Whitney Canada PW308A engines provide 6900 lbs thrust per side at ISA+22 with full FADEC.

Standard dual air cycle machines can maintain FL 450 on a single pack. All flight controls are operated manually.

Spoilers—3 on each wing—are electrically signaled and hydraulically driven and double-slotted flaps—2 panels per side—are electronically controlled and electrically powered.

Hydraulically actuated nose wheel steering incorporates digital steer-by-wire operated by a normal hand wheel which allows for a great ±70° steering angle. My only complaint with Hawker 4000 flight controls is angle of trim switch on the wheel but this is something every Hawker pilot gets used to.

 

2


1 | 2| 3 next