BEECHCRAFT A36/A36TC/B36TC “BONANZA”
STANDARD DATA: (A36) Seats: 6; Gross weight: 3,600 lbs.; Empty weight: 2,195 lbs.; Fuel capacity: 74 gals.; Engine: 285 hp Continental.
The biggest single-engine Bonanza, the Model 36, was introduced in 1968 to compete with Piper’s Cherokee Six and the 200-series haulers from Cessna. It remains the only retractable in the single-engine, six-seat utility class. The A36 was developed by lengthening the fuselage of the Model 33 and using the same durable wing, landing gear and Continental engine of the Bonanza family. Six seats were available, and with club-seating arrangements and a foldout table, it became a flying office. In 1975, the A36 outsold all other Bonanza models for the first time.
With a longer cabin and wide double doors, the Bonanza A36 offers greater utility and convenience without sacrificing performance and economy. In 1977, for the first time, the A36 was offered with factory-installed electric trim, formerly available only on aircraft equipped with an autopilot. The A36 accounted for 50% of the total Bonanza production in 1977, and that percentage increased in 1978. Beech added a turbocharged version of its Bonanza A36 in mid-1979. The aircraft is certified to a maximum operational altitude of 25,000 feet and has approximately the same takeoff distance as the A36. Power is supplied by a 300 hp Continental engine, which conforms to the minimum horsepower concept introduced on the Baron 58P and 58TC in 1977. The A36TC has a gross weight of 3,650 pounds, which is 50 pounds more than the standard A36. A shortened three-blade propeller reduces tip speed, increases ground clearance, and reduces noise.
In 1982, Beechcraft replaced the A36TC with the B36TC. The new design mated the longer Baron wing to the Model 36 fuselage, and fuel capacity was increased from 74 gallons to 102 gallons. Service ceiling for the A36TC and B36TC remained at 25,000 feet. The final year of production for turbocharged Bonanzas was 2001. The B36TC’s production run ended in 2001.
Of all the Bonanza models, only the normally aspirated A36 remains. Beginning in 2005, the six-seat Beech came to market with an all-glass panel.