Cost expectations

z987k

Well-Known Member
@z987k ehhhhh I just replaced my generator, it was $350. True, not $2k but it is also the same from a tractor, $40 in parts to rebuild it.
On the Cessna 180 right? Had to replace any door latches lately? Got a price on those?! :bounce:
 

Boris Badenov

Someone should definitely do *something*, Captain!
To be honest I'm not sure how you do airplane ownership without crazy deep pockets if you're not going to be pretty dang familiar with the entire mx side of it.
As above, I'm not (contrary to popular opinion) an idiot. I understand how engines work, and can field-expediently diagnose and crappily repair them. I just lack the patience and skill to do a proper job. It's something to do with temperament, big 5 personality traits, and all of that rot. Like, I'm fairly confident that confronted with an engine which isn't working the way it should, I can tell you that it seems to have a fuel problem or a spark problem, etc etc. I just cannot be arsed to sit around for 60 hours getting every little thing *just so*. And yeah, I'm pricing in the huge uptick in cost for someone who likes or at least is willing to do that sort of thing, or at least I think I am. Hence the questions.
 

milleR

Well-Known Member
As above, I'm not (contrary to popular opinion) an idiot. I understand how engines work, and can field-expediently diagnose and crappily repair them. I just lack the patience and skill to do a proper job. It's something to do with temperament, big 5 personality traits, and all of that rot. Like, I'm fairly confident that confronted with an engine which isn't working the way it should, I can tell you that it seems to have a fuel problem or a spark problem, etc etc. I just cannot be arsed to sit around for 60 hours getting every little thing *just so*. And yeah, I'm pricing in the huge uptick in cost for someone who likes or at least is willing to do that sort of thing, or at least I think I am. Hence the questions.
In that case plan on $150/hour (labor) for everything from a nav light to a cylinder replacement with a minimum of 4 hours for the shop to troubleshoot the problem. That’s a budgetary number. The longer you own, the cheaper it gets.
 
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drunkenbeagle

Gang Member
As above, I'm not (contrary to popular opinion) an idiot. I understand how engines work, and can field-expediently diagnose and crappily repair them. I just lack the patience and skill to do a proper job.
From my experience in a flying club over the last 10 years - you make some friends, who happen to be mechanics - things are suddenly much cheaper. I personally would find the club, and friends first - then buy the airplane.

The only reason I do not own an airplane is that they are still so easy to rent. The day that isn't true, I'll be an airplane owner.
 

z987k

Well-Known Member
The only reason I do not own an airplane is that they are still so easy to rent. The day that isn't true, I'll be an airplane owner.
That's only true if you're doing some really mundane things with them. The second you want to land off pavement or go upside down, the doors slam closed.
 

inigo88

Composite-lover
The Skybolt is experimental, so that should reduce the cost of ownership pretty significantly. That $2000 alternator Nark has to put on will cost you $40 from ACDelco. It's also the same thing, part numbers and all. Some things, you do have to buy the airplane version of though. Most places have an experimental version that is the same thing without paperwork for 25-50% less. The annual labor might cost less since any A&P can do it. Especially if you know an A&P, do the whole annual yourself(meaning everything is fixed and perfect when you present it) and all they have to do is shine a flashlight on stuff to ensure you did in fact do it all correct.
You'll be able to do 100% of the Mx and change anything you want without blessings from the FFA. Just can't sign the annual unless you built it.

That said, buying someone else's home built requires an even more in depth pre-buy than a certified. You really need to know the airplane well.
Agree 1000%. I was going to post something similar but you said it much more eloquently.

I would emphasize that buying someone else’s experimental really is the Wild West of airplane ownership. The quality can be immaculate or terrible and completely unsafe. Fortunately with a Skybolt the construction methods are fairly conventional and inspectable (4130 steel tube, fabric and wood), but don’t underestimate the power of a senile old man to leave out a critical piece of structure because he either forgot or decided he knew better than those damn engineers. You either need to be willing to become intimately familiar with the drawings to make sure everything is all as it should be, or you need to hire an expert who can do it for you. There are checks and balances in the home built process but a DAR isn’t going to catch everything, and not all homebuilts are created equal to begin with (does the engineering comply with FAR part 23 certification standards? The skybolt is likely overbuilt for what it does but other less common experimentals could be a crapshoot here). Fortunately Skybolts are pretty common, are built with the same conventional 1920s-30s design and construction techniques as other aerobatic biplanes like the Pitts/Great Lakes, and there are a good number of them flying so there’s some precedent that it’s a proven design.
 

chipdumper

Member
I apologize for creeping off-topic but checkout Mike Busch’s latest: Savvy Maintenance
He discusses the FAA’s Coleal interpretation (2009). It green-lighted “simple and minor preservation tasks” that are not specially stated in Part 43 Owner Maintenance. So changing the bulb in your compass is legit so long that it is simple; mine takes 5 seconds. This is outside of what I learned which was that Part 43 was a finite list of what tasks we could complete. So you can unchain your hangar fairies to a reasonable level; just document the work and be able to articulate the “simple and minor preservation task”.
Somebody mentioned hoses here — it is specifically stated in Part 43 that the owner can replace hoses with prefabricated ones. New fire-sleeved Aeroquip hoses aren’t that bad.


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drunkenbeagle

Gang Member
That's only true if you're doing some really mundane things with them. The second you want to land off pavement or go upside down, the doors slam closed.
I might actually have more takeoffs from turf than pavement at this point. Not something I log, so no way to really know.
 

Roger Roger

Paid to sleep, fly for fun
I apologize for creeping off-topic but checkout Mike Busch’s latest: Savvy Maintenance
He discusses the FAA’s Coleal interpretation (2009). It green-lighted “simple and minor preservation tasks” that are not specially stated in Part 43 Owner Maintenance. So changing the bulb in your compass is legit so long that it is simple; mine takes 5 seconds. This is outside of what I learned which was that Part 43 was a finite list of what tasks we could complete. So you can unchain your hangar fairies to a reasonable level; just document the work and be able to articulate the “simple and minor preservation task”.
Somebody mentioned hoses here — it is specifically stated in Part 43 that the owner can replace hoses with prefabricated ones. New fire-sleeved Aeroquip hoses aren’t that bad.


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Mike Busch is a dingdong and I’d take anything from him with not just a grain but the whole shaker of salt.
 
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