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The Beech 19/23/24 Musketeer/Sierra/Sport/Sundowner

Country of origin  
United States of America


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Photo © David Greene
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A23A - One 125kW (165hp) Lycoming IO346A fuel injected flat four piston engine driving a two blade fixed pitch propeller. B19 - One 112kW (150hp) Lycoming O320E2D. C23 - One 135kW (180hp) Lycoming O360A4K. C23R - One 150kW (200hp) fuel injected Lycoming IO360A1B6 driving a variable pitch propeller.

A23A - Max speed 235km/h (127kt), long range cruising speed 188km/h (102kt). Initial rate of climb 728ft/min. Range with reserves 1252km (676nm). B19 - Max speed 225km/h (121kt), long range cruising speed 182km/h (98kt). Initial rate of climb 700ft/min. Range with reserves 1420km (1064nm). C23 - Max speed 228km/h (123kt), long range cruising speed 182km/h (98kt). Initial rate of climb 700ft/min. Range with reserves 1168km (631nm). C23R - Max speed 262km/h (141kt), long range cruising speed 213km/h (115kt). Initial rate of climb 927ft/min. Range with reserves 1271km (686nm).

A23A - Empty 624kg (1375lb), max takeoff 1089kg (2400lb). B19 - Empty 630kg (1390lb), max takeoff 1020kg (2250lb). C23 - Empty 681kg (1502lb), max takeoff 1111kg (2450lb). C24R - Empty 777kg (1713lb), max takeoff 1250kg (2750lb).

Wing span all versions 10.00m (32ft 9in), height all versions 2.51m (8ft 3in). Wing area all versions 13.6m2 (146sq ft). Length

All versions seat four. Additional seating for two children in Musketeer Super III.

4455 built, including 2390 Musketeers, I/II/III/Custom & Sundowners; 904 Sports; 793 Super R/Sierras; and 369 Supers.

Four seat light aircraft


Beechcraft developed the Musketeer family as a lower cost, lower performance four seater below its Bonanza, which would compete with the Cessna 172 and Piper Cherokee.

The prototype O-320 powered Musketeer flew in October 1961 and Beech added the type to its sales range in 1962. A series of continual product updating followed, resulting in the aircraft in its final Sierra form being very different to the original Musketeer. The first improved model was the A23 Musketeer II with a 125kW (165hp) Continental IO346 engine (later replaced with a Lycoming O360 in the B23).

The A23 was further developed into a three aircraft family (dubbed the Three Musketeers by Beech marketing) - the A23A Musketeer Custom III with greater max takeoff weight, the reduced MTOW A2319 Musketeer Sport III trainer with a 110kW (150hp) Lycoming O320, and the 150kW (200hp) IO360 powered and increased MTOW Musketeer Super III. From 1970 these three introduced a more rounded fuselage and were renamed the Musketeer B19 Sport, C23 Custom and A24 Super respectively.

A retractable undercarriage variant of the Super is the A24R Super R. The Musketeer name was dropped in 1971, with the Custom renamed the Sundowner, and Super R the Sierra, and the Musketeer Sport becoming simply the Sport. The Sierra underwent significant changes for the 1974 model with a new cowling, quieter engine and more efficient prop. Further aerodynamic clean ups were introduced in 1977. Series production ended in 1983.

International Directory of Civil Aircraft

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The backbone of this section is from the The International Directory of Civil Aircraft by Gerard Frawley and used with permission. To get your own copy of the book click here.