Marketing Mix

Admittedly, I know nothing about push and pull strategies when it comes to marketing. In my mind, I had the same picture of what it could mean as Chuck and Julio do in the last panel. If I had to guess, I’d say Stefan came up with this one.

However, I used to know quite a bit about “push and pull airplanes”, mainly the Cessna 337 Skymaster. While pilots love them, mechanics hate them. Julio’s hate for Skymasters came as a direct reflection of me hating them. They are great planes, but man, are they hard to work on. Being a skinny short mechanic, I was the obvious choice for the Cessna dealership to work on the Skymaster though, especially for the rear pusher motor. You had to be triple-jointed to reach most of the components on that one.
Working on the pressurized turbocharged airconditioned retractable gear Skymasters ranks near the top among my worst aviation experiences, lol. It just was too much stuff crammed in too little of a space. To change the vacuum pump on the rear motor, you pretty much had to remove the entire motor first. Otherwise, you just wouldn’t be able to get to it.
My Skymaster nightmare even followed me around after earning a reputation for being “The Skymaster Guy” on the field. So, even switching companies didn’t help, since all the owners just followed me to the next shop I started working for. And since Cessna didn’t make a bunch of them, parts were hard to get as well. I built a lot of baffles for these things from scratch…

Does anybody in the coop here have any Skymaster experience by any chance?
Or push and pull marketing experience?


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5 comments on “Marketing Mix
  1. Franck Mée says:

    The last Skymaster I saw was actually hanging below an Écureuil (for american readers: it’s called Astar out there 😉). She had had a failure on initial climb and, not being sure to get over the trees, the pilot had chosen to land her in a wheat field, a few hundred meters from the airport. A sturdy little aircraft she was: she made her own runway through the crops like it was nothing to worry about and stopped in 100 m with no more damage.
    Then they realized it was impossible to get her off the field to the nearest roads without taking the wings off, so they opted for an airlift. They made the Skymaster as light as they could, taking off both propellers, all seats and easily removable parts, and all the fuel of course, and estimated she was around 1200 kg.
    There was an Écureuil working in the vicinity, they called her owner and her pilot, and they agreed to give it a go. So in the evening, the Écureuil went to try and sling up the Skymaster.
    Another sturdy little aircraft she was: she took that heavier-than-herself load off the ground, turned into the wind and 10 min later they were both back on the apron.

    It took the owner a few days to put everything they took off the Skymaster back on and repair whatever had broken, then she took off to her destination. For good, this time.

    I took a few pictures while I was there, so here’s the link!

  2. Rwill says:

    Just before the FBO I was working at closed, a guy on the field bought a Skymaster. I never really had to work on it. I think all I did was a oil change, but I did get to run it up and taxi it around the airport. It was a neat plane, kinda fun to play with, on the ground anyways. Just before that he had a Barron, which was always my favorite plane, so I was a little disappointed.

  3. L says:

    Some Skymaster experience here. Waddya need, Mike? And yes, starting the rear engine first is SOP. 🙂

    Francks, that’s a great story. The pictures are awesome, never seen a Mixmaster hanging under a small chopper like that, would expect something bigger. Did the story get onto the evening news? Or in the local newspaper?

  4. rwill says:

    I meant to type Bonazza not Barron, I don’t know how that happened. Though we did have a Barron on field that I worked on.

    Yes, if you started the front engine first it was pretty hard to tell what was going on in the rear when you tried to star it second.

    I’ve heard that that was one of the biggest problems with it, a rear engine out on takeoff. Because the pilot wouldn’t realize that the rear engine was out.

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