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Thread: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

  1. #1
    Registered User Wanttaja's Avatar
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    Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    These are based on my downloading of the FAA Registration Database around the first of each year.

    Type
    2009
    2010
    2011
    2012
    2013
    2014
    2015
    2016
    Air Command
    138
    138
    128
    121
    72
    67
    58
    58
    Aventura
    109
    110
    107
    104
    96
    95
    90
    90
    Avid
    646
    646
    614
    587
    455
    448
    423
    430
    Baby/Junior Ace
    335
    336
    327
    319
    265
    265
    276
    284
    Bede BD-4
    203
    200
    188
    165
    111
    104
    104
    102
    Bede BD-5
    230
    227
    187
    150
    91
    77
    68
    68
    Benson Gyro
    1222
    1217
    1100
    860
    439
    349
    326
    323
    Bowers Fly Baby
    323
    322
    310
    281
    203
    187
    184
    185
    Challenger
    1405
    1422
    1399
    1365
    1200
    1198
    1179
    1205
    Christen Eagle
    332
    326
    306
    294
    251
    241
    234
    232
    Glasair
    831
    833
    806
    794
    718
    715
    704
    709
    GlaStar/Sportsman
    419
    429
    434
    443
    446
    463
    462
    480
    Harmon Rocket
    154
    157
    162
    163
    166
    164
    166
    94
    Hatz
    128
    128
    128
    129
    122
    123
    125
    128
    Kitfox
    1312
    1324
    1318
    1299
    1130
    1150
    1155
    1167
    Kolb (Ex-AB)
    298
    304
    301
    296
    248
    241
    236
    235
    Lancair (All Models)
    1036
    1044
    1049
    1049
    1016
    1007
    1005
    1030
    Lancair IV
    319
    320
    319
    313
    307
    299
    293
    317
    Midget Mustang
    380
    380
    355
    342
    287
    280
    275
    279
    Murphy
    254
    252
    248
    237
    216
    212
    212
    218
    Pietenpol
    484
    483
    472
    458
    380
    378
    379
    391
    Pitts (EX-AB)
    829
    823
    815
    757
    652
    626
    630
    638
    Pulsar/KIS
    198
    201
    197
    187
    159
    155
    151
    154
    Quickie/Q2/Q200
    456
    454
    398
    369
    208
    182
    171
    178
    Quicksilver EX-AB
    371
    375
    359
    320
    180
    172
    163
    169
    RAF-2000 Gyro
    179
    178
    172
    169
    152
    149
    144
    145
    Rand KR-2
    602
    598
    524
    467
    281
    242
    228
    230
    RANS
    930
    959
    962
    961
    862
    866
    881
    901
    Rotorway
    762
    768
    739
    715
    557
    532
    508
    517
    Rutan Long-EZ
    640
    641
    606
    588
    499
    488
    486
    487
    Rutan Varieze
    593
    587
    543
    486
    364
    332
    317
    319
    SeaRey
    259
    272
    276
    286
    277
    302
    323
    343
    Sonerai
    433
    432
    408
    367
    262
    245
    234
    234
    Sonex
    331
    372
    413
    454
    482
    525
    562
    596
    Steen Skybolt
    396
    389
    371
    351
    297
    288
    287
    288
    Stolp
    632
    628
    590
    545
    470
    460
    458
    459
    Stolp Starduster
    533
    531
    500
    463
    405
    395
    393
    392
    Thorp T-18
    389
    387
    370
    346
    305
    299
    299
    304
    Vans RV-3
    211
    210
    205
    196
    174
    172
    175
    176
    Vans RV-4
    1126
    1128
    1118
    1118
    1066
    1063
    1065
    1072
    Vans RV-6
    1999
    2012
    2006
    2002
    1962
    1965
    1964
    1985
    Vans RV-7
    901
    977
    1040
    1122
    1173
    1229
    1277
    1325
    Vans RV-8
    1036
    1084
    1123
    1165
    1204
    1233
    1272
    1319
    Vans RV-9
    464
    501
    543
    577
    603
    635
    667
    687
    Vans RV-10
    238
    273
    310
    331
    353
    389
    423
    453
    Vans RV-12 (EX-AB)
    0
    8
    19
    28
    36
    49
    53
    63
    Velocity
    323
    327
    317
    317
    286
    290
    288
    291
    Volksplane
    328
    328
    309
    252
    149
    138
    129
    130
    Zenair EX-AB
    653
    730
    795
    846
    864
    922
    967
    1015

    Counts are for total registered examples, EXCEPT where the type is followed by "EX-AB". In these cases, the tally is only those aircraft registered Experimental Amateur-Built.

    Ron Wanttaja

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    Registered User BBerson's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Looks like in just 7 years the fleet has declined to about half, on average, for older designs.
    And the popular designs are holding even.

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    Registered User Wanttaja's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Quote Originally Posted by BBerson View Post
    Looks like in just 7 years the fleet has declined to about half, on average, for older designs.
    And the popular designs are holding even.
    Keep in mind that the 2010-2013 period was when the FAA instituted its re-registration process. A lot of old airplanes that, in a lot of cases, no longer existed were stricken from the rolls.

    Here's a summary of what happened in that period:
    Year
    EAB
    Net EAB Increase
    EAB Deregistered in that Year
    New EAB Registered
    2009
    31914
    672
    464
    1136
    2010
    32682
    768
    309
    1077
    2011
    33038
    356
    666
    1022
    2012
    32041
    -997
    1951
    954
    2013
    27946
    -4095
    5013
    918
    2014
    27909
    -37
    1084
    1047
    2015
    28078
    169
    781
    950
    2016
    28830
    752
    225
    977

    Ron Wanttaja

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    Registered User cheapracer's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Thanks Ron, appreciated.

    There can be no argument where the trend is going, Vans, Zenith and Sonex are intrinsically the same thing and going forward in strides while everything else is going backwards other than the Searay.

    Certainly supports my research and conclusions for a cheap, easy build, all metal kit.
    Quote Originally Posted by BoKu View Post
    The vast majority of engineering failures are the results of failure of imagination rather than failure of calculation.

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    Registered User fly2kads's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Nice job, as usual, Ron! I appreciate your dives into the data (registration and accidents) and your willingness to share that with everyone.

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    Registered User bmcj's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Just curious... someone made an off-the-cuff remark the other day that homebuilts account for a third of the currently registered (active) general aviation fleet. Do you think that is anywhere close to the truth?

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    Registered User Wanttaja's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Quote Originally Posted by bmcj View Post
    Just curious... someone made an off-the-cuff remark the other day that homebuilts account for a third of the currently registered (active) general aviation fleet. Do you think that is anywhere close to the truth?
    No, it's not that high. EABs are less than 10% of the entire US fleet. Here's a summary:
    Year
    % EAB of Total Fleet
    All New Aircraft
    New EAB
    EAB percentage of New Aircraft
    2009
    8.5%
    5267
    1136
    22%
    2010
    8.7%
    4945
    1077
    22%
    2011
    9.0%
    5185
    1022
    20%
    2012
    9.1%
    5326
    954
    18%
    2013
    8.8%
    5983
    918
    15%
    2014
    8.9%
    7181
    1047
    15%
    2015
    8.9%
    10058
    950
    9%
    2016
    9.0%
    10533
    977
    9%

    Note that the percentage of new aircraft each year that are EAB has actually been dropping, over the last eight years.

    Ron Wanttaja

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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Quote Originally Posted by Wanttaja View Post
    These are based on my downloading of the FAA Registration Database around the first of each year.

    Counts are for total registered examples, EXCEPT where the type is followed by "EX-AB". In these cases, the tally is only those aircraft registered Experimental Amateur-Built.
    There are a fair # of COZY's of all types (I'd guess 200 - 400 registered - haven't checked in a few years) - I don't see those listed here, although I see types with far fewer flying examples. Is this supposed to be the total fleet of EAB, or just a sub-sample of types?

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    Registered User Direct C51's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Ron, any idea why the newly registered airplane numbers in the last 2 years have been almost double what hey have been in the years prior? This seems rather surprising.

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    Registered User Wanttaja's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Zeitlin View Post
    There are a fair # of COZY's of all types (I'd guess 200 - 400 registered - haven't checked in a few years) - I don't see those listed here, although I see types with far fewer flying examples. Is this supposed to be the total fleet of EAB, or just a sub-sample of types?
    My overall process does include the COZY, but don't recall why I didn't include it in the sample above. IIRC, the numbers were in the lower part of your range.

    Quote Originally Posted by Direct C51 View Post
    Ron, any idea why the newly registered airplane numbers in the last 2 years have been almost double what hey have been in the years prior? This seems rather surprising.
    Yes, that's curious, and I'll take a closer look over the next couple of days. It's certainly a spike, but the previous years were ramping up.

    It may be related to the method I use to determine the fleet size increase. I use the net increase, and add the number of airplanes that were deregistered that year. If my method of tallying the number of deregistered aircraft is wonky, that will affect the computation of new aircraft. Yet I use the same process for the Amateur-Built aircraft, and they don't show a spike.....

    Ron Wanttaja

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    Registered User Wanttaja's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Zeitlin View Post
    Is this supposed to be the total fleet of EAB, or just a sub-sample of types?
    Just a sampling of specific types. I have a lot of filters I use to extract the numbers for various types, but there's no way get all the potential types. Also, if a builder goes way out of the norm for the aircraft make/model ("Joes #7 Special" instead of "Joes RV-7"), my filters don't catch it. While folks tend to standardize on the terminology for the very common homebuilts, I still have to spread a fairly wide net for the filters ("RV-7", "RV7", "RV 7", "Vans 7", "Vans Seven," etc.). The older types tend to have a much broader range of names.

    Haven't actually counted them, but I believe I have filters for ~100 homebuilt types (some overlap, though, such as the "All Zenith" and "Zenith CH-701") filters. Believe they catch about two-thirds of the fleet.

    Ron Wanttaja

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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    There are no Tailwinds on your list; major scientific flaw . I do notice the legacy designs look to be trending up a couple a year. Must be builders or restorers keeping it going. The Harmon Rocket numbers seem odd. Exported a bunch? Vans with 150 some odd completions a year is strong.

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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    For Cozy, used the following filter:

    Like "*Cozy*" Or Like "*Co-Z*" Or Like "*Co z*" Or Like "*puffer*"

    There were 196 in 2009, and 192 in 2016.

    Searching for Tailwinds is more difficult. Lots of other airplanes use the "W8" or "W10" designation variations.

    Found about 245 in 2009, 205 in 2016.

    Ron Wanttaja

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    Registered User Wanttaja's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Quote Originally Posted by Wanttaja View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Direct C51 View Post
    Ron, any idea why the newly registered airplane numbers in the last 2 years have been almost double what hey have been in the years prior? This seems rather surprising.
    Yes, that's curious, and I'll take a closer look over the next couple of days. It's certainly a spike, but the previous years were ramping up.
    Well, that's cool. It appears to be mostly drones!

    I'm digging for a definitive flag in the registration data. But there are almost 3500 electric-motored aircraft in the registry, and I'm betting all but a few are drones.

    Will re-do the numbers once I find a consistent way of eliminating them.

    Ron Wanttaja

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    Registered User Wanttaja's Avatar
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    Re: Homebuilt Fleet Sizes

    Quote Originally Posted by Wanttaja View Post
    Well, that's cool. It appears to be mostly drones!
    And I reiterate, with feeling: Cooooooooool.

    The FAA doesn't have any sort of flag (that I found) that designates when a registered aircraft is a drone. For my analysis, I assumed that a plane listed as having zero seats and NOT lighter than air was a drone (many balloons seem to be "zero-seaters"). I know there are a few drone blimps, but figured it wouldn't mess up my numbers too much.


    The red line is the new aircraft each year without caring if it's a drone, and the blue line is my attempt to count the number of non-drones added in the year. Suspect the little gap between 2012 and 2014 just reflects little errors in my process.

    Ron Wanttaja

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