The ease of a turboprop to jet transition
Book manufacturer Chris Kurtzman had thought about trading in his single-engine turboprop for a jet for quite a while. His TBM 700™ served him well for a decade, but he was ready for more range, more speed, more weather-topping capability and more comfort. When Kurtzman saw the Cessna® Citation® M2® “it just felt right,” he said.
More importantly, Kurtzman liked that the aircraft, which is based on the CJ™ platform, required a 525 type rating. If he earned the 525 rating, Kurtzman knew he would be immediately rated for Cessna’s entire CJ series.
“I looked at other aircraft, but I chose the M2 because of the 525 type rating. It goes along with Cessna’s other products and allows me to easily move up to bigger, faster jets in the future,” said Kurtzman, a 20-year pilot with more than 3,000 hours.
He primarily uses the M2 for business travel. With the company’s headquarters in Minnesota; printing operations in Ohio, Maryland and California; offices in Illinois and Maryland; and customers spread out across the country, Kurtzman typically flies weekly to keep up with it all and quickly respond to customers’ needs.
Chris Kurtzman's transition from single-engine turboprop to jet took less than three weeks of training.
For the move from single-engine turboprop to jet, Kurtzman anticipated a learning curve, but he was pleasantly surprised with how well his TBM’s Garmin avionics prepared him for the transition. The TBM also provided experience with pressurization.
“It was a much easier transition to the jet than I expected. The M2 is an easy jet to fly with the Garmin™ (G3000™) avionics platform. The FADEC (full authority digital engine control) handles a lot of the operations for you. It simplifies flying,” said Kurtzman, who also previously operated a Beechcraft® Bonanza® and Baron®.
Kurtzman spent 16 days at FlightSafety and flew dual time with a mentor pilot, making his total training for the jet less than three weeks.
“It took less mentor pilot hours than I expected, and the insurance ended up costing less on a per-haul basis than my TBM. The M2 is a great airplane, and I’m really happy with how the transition went,” he said.