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Old 11-17-2011, 06:59 PM   #81
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I wish I could do it the first time all over again. Enjoy...Tight
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Old 11-17-2011, 07:56 PM   #82
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Now I just have to wait till December 5 to start, hopefully the weather will be good.
The DAY after I soloed, a front boundary stalled out over our area for over 2 weeks!! This was late Dec. The weather was the crappiest snow/drizzle/rain/fog/blustery I have ever seen. One day, about noon, I was driving home from school and saw, way up north, an absolutely clear blue sky, ever-so-slowly pushing the crap out of the way. I called and got a reservation for a plane and instructor for about 4:00PM. It actually took that long for the cold front to "win" out over the warm front and clean out the clouds and moisture. It was a beautiful thing to behold. Hope you have as good weather and better luck getting it!
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Old 12-07-2011, 01:33 PM   #83
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Well Dec 5 it was too cloudy, so today was my first day. Got a little over a hour in and everything went fine. My instructor was very calm and really just talked me thru everything. I'm looking forward to the next time up.
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Old 12-23-2011, 03:40 PM   #84
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Well Ive gotten to go up a few more times, Ive got a little over 7 hours in so far. The instructor said I'm doing fine. I'm starting to feel more comfortable, still have a way's to go though. So hopefully I'll get to go up a few more time's next week and I'll get 10 hours in this month. Then I'm taking a couple of weeks off, I'm going to florida in the camper, but I'm going to use some of the time to study for my written.

I'm still excited before each lesson and the instructor keeps saying I can come back. So I guess things are good.
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Old 12-27-2011, 06:00 PM   #85
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dm, does your heart still come up in your throat when you land? I got very good at landings and could usually grease my plane onto the runway with nary a bounce or shudder. BUT, I never completely felt relaxed when landing. A lot is going on and that ground coming up sure looks exciting even to someone with over 100 hours and hundreds of landings.

I mostly flew a Cessna 150. On calmer days, I liked to come in a little high, drop the full 40 degrees of flaps on final and then it seemed like the nose was pointing straight down. Always gave me a thrill. The advantage was that I always had plenty of altitude so that I wouldn't need any power if the fan quit on final. If I was too high, I could merely nose the plane into a steeper dive and the barn-door flaps bled off the altitude at an amazing rate while still keeping airspeed quite low (don't exceed 100 mph with 40 deg. of flaps). Flaring to a full-stall landing became a piece of cake if the cross winds were mild. If you try this, just be certain to get the flaps back up to 20 degrees or less as soon as you are rolling. That way, if you need to go around (like if a cow wanders onto the field, heh, heh, or if you're just shooting touch-and-gos) you won't have too much drag to take off again.

Have fun and YMMV.
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Old 12-27-2011, 08:58 PM   #86
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Landings are still kind of exciting. This is the only time Ive ever been in a small plane so I don't have much to compare with. No bounces so far. I had to go around once because I was to high, I thought I could make it, but my instructor said I was to high and the runway to short. And once I didn't get all my flaps down, I landed with 20 degree, I was reaching for more but I was already at the runway so I just landed with what I had. The thing that bugs me is the turning stalls. I don't have any problem getting out of them, just uncomfortable.

It looks like the weather is bad for tommorow, so hopefully I'll get to go up on Friday, then its off to Florida for a couple of weeks. But I'll be looking over my ground school stuff while I'm down there.
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Old 04-30-2012, 07:19 AM   #87
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I thought I would give a little update. I have about 40hrs so far. I still need to do 3 hours of night, and soft, and short field landings and takeoffs, then practice for the checkride.

And to keep me motivated I bought a plane. Its a Beechcraft Debonair, its to be delivered Wednesday. So after I finish my PPL in the 172 I get to take another 25hrs of Dual in the new plane for insurance purposes.
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Old 04-30-2012, 07:22 AM   #88
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Here is a pic.
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Old 04-30-2012, 08:11 AM   #89
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I thought I would give a little update. I have about 40hrs so far. I still need to do 3 hours of night, and soft, and short field landings and takeoffs, then practice for the checkride.

And to keep me motivated I bought a plane. Its a Beechcraft Debonair, its to be delivered Wednesday. So after I finish my PPL in the 172 I get to take another 25hrs of Dual in the new plane for insurance purposes.
Congratulations on your progress, that's great.
I'm thinking of buying, or building, an airplane. It's just about impossible to justify on cost basis for me--unless you fly quite a bit that will always be the case. But, if you want to fly a type of airplane that's not available for rent, then owning you own can be the best answer. And there are ways to cut costs. Do you plan to take any partners with your plane? It can be a big moneysaver when its time to pay the hangar rent or replace the first burned valve. Planes sure don't have the low maintenance costs of today's cars.
Your new plane looks great, I know you'll have a lot of fun. Maybe you can use that 25 hours of dual to get your instrument rating--it's a handy thing to have if you plan to use the airplane for transportation.
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Old 04-30-2012, 08:28 AM   #90
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Congratulations on your progress, that's great.
I'm thinking of buying, or building, an airplane. It's just about impossible to justify on cost basis for me--unless you fly quite a bit that will always be the case. But, if you want to fly a type of airplane that's not available for rent, then owning you own can be the best answer. And there are ways to cut costs. Do you plan to take any partners with your plane? It can be a big moneysaver when its time to pay the hangar rent or replace the first burned valve. Planes sure don't have the low maintenance costs of today's cars.
Your new plane looks great, I know you'll have a lot of fun. Maybe you can use that 25 hours of dual to get your instrument rating--it's a handy thing to have if you plan to use the airplane for transportation.
As far as cost goes, there is no way to justify it. But I like the fact that I will have access to it and maintain and upgrade to my liking. There are lots of things I can't justify, I like to golf, and Ive owned sports cars, boats, and motorcycles in the past. But according to my calculations I should be able to afford it. I don't plan on taking on any partners at this point, but that may change. I'll have to see what the cost are.
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Old 04-30-2012, 08:45 AM   #91
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I'm glad to see you are getting close. Attaining your PPL is a great accomplishment.

Your new toy looks great. I love the paint scheme and it's tough to bet the quality of a Beech. It's truely a complex aircraft and will take a few hours to learn the systems and feel comfortable with the additional knobs, levers and handling of a much heavier aircraft. Give it some time and you'll be happy with your choice, especially for those cross country flights.

I agree with samclem. Use as many hours as possible to get good instrument training. You'll want to take your new plane on cross country flights where weather will become a bigger issue. It's really a safety issue. Good luck on your next few hours and your check ride...HAVE FUN!!!
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:23 AM   #92
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Congrats DM, beautiful airplane.

I sold mine a few years ago and have thought of getting back into GA again. Have been running the numbers with regards to the escalation in 100LL price in recent years. The EPA wants to do away with it but so far the refineries have not come out with a substitute.
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:41 AM   #93
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Congrats DM, beautiful airplane.

I sold mine a few years ago and have thought of getting back into GA again. Have been running the numbers with regards to the escalation in 100LL price in recent years. The EPA wants to do away with it but so far the refineries have not come out with a substitute.
Yep. Getting an airplane that can burn MOGAS (experimental or with an appropriate STC) can save a lot, but even that has become more troublesome with the mandatory introduction of ethanol at most gas stations (it's still possible to get real gasoline at many marinas). The ethanol doesn't play well with some of the fuel lines, pumps, and even tank sealants, the hygroscopic nature of the ethanol accelerates corrosion, and the lower vapor pressure can cause vapor lock/fuel boiling problems at moderate altitudes at typical temperatures under the cowl.

I think 100LL is going to be with us for quite some time, but it'll get more and more costly. A reasonably-priced airplane diesel engine that could run on Jet A would solve a lot of problems and be safer in crashes, but that's a road littered with failed attempts so far.
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:43 AM   #94
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Congrats DM, beautiful airplane.

I sold mine a few years ago and have thought of getting back into GA again. Have been running the numbers with regards to the escalation in 100LL price in recent years. The EPA wants to do away with it but so far the refineries have not come out with a substitute.
One of the reasons I went with the Debonair instead of the V-tail is this one can run on Mogas, if I can find it. There are two airports close by that have it so far.
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Old 04-30-2012, 02:56 PM   #95
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But according to my calculations I should be able to afford it. I don't plan on taking on any partners at this point, but that may change. I'll have to see what the cost are.
So, here are my real world numbers for an A36 Bonanza (close enough to a Debonair) for 2002-2007.

NOTE: THIS WAS WITH A PARTNER. We split all costs, except Avgas was actual, filled the tanks when done. Engine reserve was at $25/hour.

AVERAGE OF $19,608 per year.

Category2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
Airplane:Avgas $ 2,316 $ 2,409 $ 3,502 $ 2,558 $ 4,475 $ 4,880
Airplane Depreciation $ 3,300 $ 3,300 $ 3,300 $ 3,300 $ 3,300 $ 3,300
Airplane:Engine Reserve $ 1,535 $ 1,382 $ 3,191 $ 1,425 $ 3,875 $ -
Airplane:Hangar $ 2,400 $ 1,350 $ 1,458 $ 1,005 $ 1,421 $ 548
Airplane:Instruction $ 6,339 $ 890 $ 125 $ - $ 167 $ 59
Airplane:Insure. $ 2,728 $ 2,100 $ 3,046 $ 2,070 $ 1,980 $ 875
Airplane:Maint $ 4,025 $ 4,950 $ 1,650 $ 5,432 $ 8,559 $ 7,701
Airplane:Maps & Charts $ - $ - $ 113 $ 32 $ 11 $ 36
Airplane:Medical Certification $ 100 $ - $ - $ - $ 100 $ -
Airplane:Misc. $ 1,568 $ 1,177 $ 323 $ 29 $ 140 $ 1,759
OVERALL TOTAL $ 24,311 $ 17,558 $ 16,708 $ 15,851 $ 24,027 $ 19,157
Here are the costs when I owned a Mooney Ovation ON MY OWN:
AVERAGE of over 30K per year...AND I DIDN'T reserve for Engine...which would add 3-4K per year....

Category 2008 2009 2010
Airplane:Avgas $ 6,596 $ 3,776 $ 1,992
Airplane Depreciation $ 8,666 $ 8,666 $ 8,666
Airplane:Engine Reserve $ - $ - $ -
Airplane:Hangar $ 1,789 $ 1,422 $ 2,843
Airplane:Instruction $ - $ 51 $ 125
Airplane:Insure. $ 2,986 $ 2,561 $ 2,307
Airplane:Maint $ 5,970 $ 15,057 $ 7,049
Airplane:Maps & Charts $ 456 $ 404 $ -
Airplane:Medical Certification $ - $ - $ 100
Airplane:Misc. $ 4,887 $ 861 $ 5,199
OVERALL TOTAL $ 31,350 $ 32,799 $ 28,281

YMMV, but the rising cost of Avgas is only one issue with the cost of airplane ownership.

My thought is that you really might want a partner.

In either case, not really a LBYM activity.....

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Old 04-30-2012, 03:17 PM   #96
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I need to make sure the wife doesn't see this thread.
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Old 04-30-2012, 03:26 PM   #97
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So, here are my real world numbers for an A36 Bonanza (close enough to a Debonair) for 2002-2007.

NOTE: THIS WAS WITH A PARTNER. We split all costs, except Avgas was actual, filled the tanks when done. Engine reserve was at $25/hour.

AVERAGE OF $19,608 per year.

Category2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
Airplane:Avgas $ 2,316 $ 2,409 $ 3,502 $ 2,558 $ 4,475 $ 4,880
Airplane Depreciation $ 3,300 $ 3,300 $ 3,300 $ 3,300 $ 3,300 $ 3,300
Airplane:Engine Reserve $ 1,535 $ 1,382 $ 3,191 $ 1,425 $ 3,875 $ -
Airplane:Hangar $ 2,400 $ 1,350 $ 1,458 $ 1,005 $ 1,421 $ 548
Airplane:Instruction $ 6,339 $ 890 $ 125 $ - $ 167 $ 59
Airplane:Insure. $ 2,728 $ 2,100 $ 3,046 $ 2,070 $ 1,980 $ 875
Airplane:Maint $ 4,025 $ 4,950 $ 1,650 $ 5,432 $ 8,559 $ 7,701
Airplane:Maps & Charts $ - $ - $ 113 $ 32 $ 11 $ 36
Airplane:Medical Certification $ 100 $ - $ - $ - $ 100 $ -
Airplane:Misc. $ 1,568 $ 1,177 $ 323 $ 29 $ 140 $ 1,759
OVERALL TOTAL $ 24,311 $ 17,558 $ 16,708 $ 15,851 $ 24,027 $ 19,157
Here are the costs when I owned a Mooney Ovation ON MY OWN:
AVERAGE of over 30K per year...AND I DIDN'T reserve for Engine...which would add 3-4K per year....

Category 2008 2009 2010
Airplane:Avgas $ 6,596 $ 3,776 $ 1,992
Airplane Depreciation $ 8,666 $ 8,666 $ 8,666
Airplane:Engine Reserve $ - $ - $ -
Airplane:Hangar $ 1,789 $ 1,422 $ 2,843
Airplane:Instruction $ - $ 51 $ 125
Airplane:Insure. $ 2,986 $ 2,561 $ 2,307
Airplane:Maint $ 5,970 $ 15,057 $ 7,049
Airplane:Maps & Charts $ 456 $ 404 $ -
Airplane:Medical Certification $ - $ - $ 100
Airplane:Misc. $ 4,887 $ 861 $ 5,199
OVERALL TOTAL $ 31,350 $ 32,799 $ 28,281
YMMV, but the rising cost of Avgas is only one issue with the cost of airplane ownership.

My thought is that you really might want a partner.

In either case, not really a LBYM activity.....

Commercial, CFI, Flying since 1983.
So the Mooney was actually cheaper than the A36. I'm not going to add depreciation to my cost. And who know's how much maint. will be. And since I don't keep a engine reserve for my cars, I'm pretty much going to ignore that also. The engine has low time and hopefully it will go to TBO, if not the kids will end up with a little less. This is all new to me, I started taking lessons in December, so we will see. If things get away from me I'll either sell, or look into getting a partner.
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Old 04-30-2012, 03:39 PM   #98
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I need to make sure the wife doesn't see this thread.
I need to make sure the wife DOES see this thread. The $12k we spent on the RV last year (including $3k in fuel) looks pretty darn good by comparison.
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Old 04-30-2012, 06:31 PM   #99
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REAttempt,
Thanks for the real-world numbers, I think your experience and costs were typical.

Just so folks don't freak out--committing aviation can be done more cheaply than this. REAttempt and dm have some very nice airplanes.

Perfectly safe but rough-looking airplanes can be purchased for less than $25K. Keeping the airplane tied down outside is cheaper than a hangar (but the plane will get weathered), and smaller aircraft burn less fuel (figure 7 gal/hour vs the 12+ gallons/hour for dm's airplane)

I rent a Cessna 152 for $85 per hour at a nearby airport. That's the total cost--it includes fuel, maintenance, etc, It's not nearly as nice as the airplanes REAttempt and dm are writing about. Theirs will carry 4 people comfortably at about 150 MPH and can safely fly through moderately poor weather. The C-152 I rent cruises at about 105 MPH and carries 2 people--barely. It can't be flown through the clouds due to lack of sufficient instrumentation. It is loud and small inside. But, for about $3000 per year I can go flying about every other week and enjoy the scenery, stay proficient, and have some fun. There are also people who own planes that can be trailered home, which saves on storage costs. If you build your own plane (a hobby in itself) then you are allowed to do all the maintenance on it, which is another big moneysaver.

Flying does not have to be out of reach for most people. It's not cheap, but it's not as expensive as many people believe.
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Old 04-30-2012, 06:31 PM   #100
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So the Mooney was actually cheaper than the A36. I'm not going to add depreciation to my cost. And who know's how much maint. will be. And since I don't keep a engine reserve for my cars, I'm pretty much going to ignore that also. The engine has low time and hopefully it will go to TBO, if not the kids will end up with a little less. This is all new to me, I started taking lessons in December, so we will see. If things get away from me I'll either sell, or look into getting a partner.
A deb is a nice airplane and seems affordable...but, here are my thoughts.

1) The deb's went for $65-80K in 2002. Yours at 55K is middle of the market. Let's say it went for 72k 10 years ago, that's about 2K depreciation per year. Money you won't get back. And, if you are going to finance it will cost you lots more in interest. If you pay cash, it will be less in your coffers growing.
2) Maintenance, if you are going to keep the airplane up (remember, your life and DW/DH life) you will likely spend at a minimum $2500 and more likely 5K/ year. You can get by with less, but you start to compromise safety. And, older Beech parts are getting *REALLY* expensive.
3) Engine reserve. Your plane has 50 SMOH. The overhaul was done in 1999 by Poplar Grove...Good News: Poplar Grove is a good shop....Bad News...that's over 13 years ago. With only 50 hours in 13 years, you likely have a rebuild in a short period of time as a result (reference: Continental's O-470 Series) Overhaul on the 470 will run between 20-24K plus removal and installation labor. I would think about having a reserve, or at least money ready. If the motor goes south, you either eat it in the overhaul, or eat it in the sale price.
4) you will burn about 12.5-13 GPH, so plan on 13x$6/gal=$78/hour in fuel.

Net Net if you fly 50 hours per year (Low End, Scrape By, Engine OK):
Fuel: 50 x $78 = $3900
Hangar: $150 x 12 = $1800 (can you even get a hangar for $150?)
Insurance: $4000 (low time pilot in High Performance Airplane)
Maintenance: $1500 (assuming NO issues/maintenance, Annual Only)
TOTAL: $11,200
Cost/Hour: $224/hour. (How much are your local rentals?)

Net Net if you fly 50 hours per year (Moderate realistic budget):
Fuel 50 x $78 = $3900
Hangar 225 x 12 = $2700
Insurance: $4000
Maintenance $3000
Maps/Charts/toys/Misc. Other = $1000
Depreciation = $2000
Total: $16,600
Cost/Hour: $332/hour

Add an overhaul at another $25K and you are talking real dollars.

Don't get me wrong, I love to fly. The deb is a great airplane and you will have fun. But, I see too many people get into an airplane and don't really understand the costs, the risks associated with scrimping on maintenance or a myriad of other issues and end up losing their shirt, or their life.

My simple suggestion would be to take a year and rent a fixed gear airplane and learn everything you can. At $150/hour, you will spend $7500. You will save at least 4K and likely more like 10K in the first year. You will learn more about airplanes etc and have a better foundation (hours/skill) to make a decision to step up.

YMMV
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