Build one or buy used......Dillema?

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Anymouse

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Pretty much homeless. My location varies from SW A
I'll go one step further....

Do the partnership thing. Then do the plans built Sonex. You only have to purchase the material (and tools!!) as you need them. It's a much more economical way to do it, however it will definitely take longer.

BTW... Make sure the family is on board with your new hobby. If you can get them involved with the build, it will help a lot.
 

Nickathome

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I know what you guys are probably thinking..."man we give this clown advice and...."..... I hear what you are all saying, believe me I do. However, I don't want to go into a partnership, or rent out to a club, etc. My whole reasoning for ownership is so I can avoid scheduling conflicts, damage from uncaring renters, and all the other unpleasantries that go along with that sort of thing. Again, I realize its a way to solve the problems of having money shortages, and allowing your cake and eating it too, but at this point I am coming to grips with the fact that I will be able to do it one way or the other and that's it. I only wanted help to decide whether to go with the Cessna or the Sonex. I've pretty much made up my mind in the last couple days that the Cessna is the way to go for the time being. A homebuilt will just have to go on the back burner for a few more years. Its as simple as that.
 

snaildrake

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Mar 19, 2010
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Albuquerque, NM USA
I've pretty much made up my mind in the last couple days that the Cessna is the way to go for the time being. A homebuilt will just have to go on the back burner for a few more years. Its as simple as that.
As someone whose flame for flying was ignited by the idea of building my own plane (and who hasn't started yet), I will still agree that buying wings that fly is the right move for you; you want ownership and control and that's fine. This forum showed me the sense of the "fly first" argument -- it's how you learn what flying really means to you.

So who is going to do the pre-purchase inspection to make sure the 150 holds no surprises? The incredible buyer's market almost demands you take the smoothest path to ownership. -Dan
 

Dan Thomas

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Sep 17, 2008
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Buying and flying a 150 could cost so much that there's nothing left to build with. Be careful. There are a lot of attractive airplanes out there that have expensive and potentially dangerous issues hidden inside them; i see them all the time. Many "annuals" are really inadequate and some expensive wear/damage/corrosion can develop to scary levels, only to be found by the new owner or his mechanic.

Dan
 

Anymouse

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Pretty much homeless. My location varies from SW A
I've pretty much made up my mind in the last couple days that the Cessna is the way to go for the time being. A homebuilt will just have to go on the back burner for a few more years. Its as simple as that.
If that's what works for you, that's all that matters. As I mentioned earlier, good luck which ever way you go. Starting off with a C-150 ain't necessarily a bad way to go at all.
 

Nickathome

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So who is going to do the pre-purchase inspection to make sure the 150 holds no surprises? The incredible buyer's market almost demands you take the smoothest path to ownership. -Dan
I'm going to have one of the mechanics at the airport do the prebuy. These guys know the airplane and they also know the owner and I've heard from a couple of them that the plane is in decent shape and that the owner was never one to cheap out on repairs, etc. However, I'm going to let the prebuy answer whether this plane is going to work out for me.
 

Nickathome

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Buying and flying a 150 could cost so much that there's nothing left to build with. Be careful. There are a lot of attractive airplanes out there that have expensive and potentially dangerous issues hidden inside them; i see them all the time. Many "annuals" are really inadequate and some expensive wear/damage/corrosion can develop to scary levels, only to be found by the new owner or his mechanic.

Dan
And hopefully this has been noted previously and will be picked up on the prebuy. Anything I am told that I don't like and I halt the buy and bail and cut my losses rather than get stuck.

I'm assuming a prebuy is like a home inspection whereas you get an idea wha tyou're up against and have the opportunity to either continue after you're given the news or bail out. I fully expect there to be some issues, and the owner has already told me that he is going to fix anything major like say a need for a new cylinder, etc. If he balks, then he either lowers price, or I walk away. If the mechanic tells me there are potential major safety factors, then I will run away. I've already ridden in/flown(right seat) the plane and I like it.
 

skier

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Mar 5, 2008
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CT
Good luck with the C-150. Hopefully it all goes well for you and you enjoy flying the plane.
 

LArzfromarz

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Aug 17, 2009
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Sunny Central FL
As an A&P (me) be careful of using "his" mechanics. I've seen kick backs and the like, rarely, but buyer beware. Picking a mechanic is has hard as picking an airplane.

That said for what you want you are doing the right thing and since this is a "Home Built" arena, I'm sorry that folks may have "bashed" at your decisions. No harm intended I'm sure.
Best of luck and that you'll be flying and doing what YOU want is what counts, and I support that.
Blue Skies!
Larry
 

Nickathome

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As an A&P (me) be careful of using "his" mechanics. I've seen kick backs and the like, rarely, but buyer beware. Picking a mechanic is has hard as picking an airplane.

Larry
I've thought of that. Its not so much "his mechanic" as it is just a mechanic familiar with the plane, but I would hope there is no funny business going on. Then again I could pick a mechanic of my own chosing and wind up with the same thing. I do know that this airport has been in business for a long time, and these mechanics have been there for a long time as well. The airport has a good reputation and I would like to hope that they're all pretty honest. I am kind of friendly with the airport manager and the owner of the flight school there, so I trust their word. At least I've never had any reason not to.
 

Hot Wings

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I\. I do know that this airport has been in business for a long time, and these mechanics have been there for a long time as well. .
I'm probably the first one to "bash" the 150 on this thread. If that's what you want then go for it! It's just not my choice of plane any more. At one time I wanted a 150 Aerobat converted to a 'dragger. Our tastes change and the same plane I wanted 15 years ago just doesn't interest me today.

That is probably one of the best arguments to but the 150 and go fly. After you get some time than you may find that a completely different type of plane better fits what you best like to do with a plane.

I'd not be too concerned about having a pre-buy done by the same mechanic that has been working on the plane in the past, especially if you plan to continue to use his services. If something serious pops up at the next annual he'll have a pretty hard time explaining why he didn't catch it sooner. ;)
 

Nickathome

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I'm probably the first one to "bash" the 150 on this thread. If that's what you want then go for it! It's just not my choice of plane any more. At one time I wanted a 150 Aerobat converted to a 'dragger. Our tastes change and the same plane I wanted 15 years ago just doesn't interest me today.

That is probably one of the best arguments to but the 150 and go fly. After you get some time than you may find that a completely different type of plane better fits what you best like to do with a plane.

I'd not be too concerned about having a pre-buy done by the same mechanic that has been working on the plane in the past, especially if you plan to continue to use his services. If something serious pops up at the next annual he'll have a pretty hard time explaining why he didn't catch it sooner. ;)
Exactly. I plan to keep the plane at this same airport since its only 5 miles from my home. I don't want to start off with any negative vibes from the FBO if suddenly I were to buy the plane and take it elsewhere for mechanical work, etc. Now after the fact is a different story. In that case it would be on the FBO/ mechanics if I decided I'd rather use someone else.

Hey, I'm not that bothered by people bashing my choice. I realize a C-150 is just a basic plane, but since it will be my first "owned" aircraft I figured what better choice to start off with. I'm sure at some point I will grow weary of a little two seater that isn't real fast and will want something else. For the time being however I'm ecstatic just to think that someday real soon I will be able to just go flying whenver I want instead of having to schedule out weeks in advance on a rental, and hope the weather's good and the plane is not stuck in the shop on the day I want to fly.
 

autoreply

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Hey, I'm not that bothered by people bashing my choice. I realize a C-150 is just a basic plane, but since it will be my first "owned" aircraft I figured what better choice to start off with. I'm sure at some point I will grow weary of a little two seater that isn't real fast and will want something else.
Basically your risk is that you're bored with the aircraft pretty quickly, which I doubt, given the "utility" the 150 gives. If you go the route many people take (buy the hottest craft they can afford) you risk killing yourself because you can't handle the ship/circumstances.

Pick either risk, but yours is highly favorable.
 

Nickathome

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Basically your risk is that you're bored with the aircraft pretty quickly, which I doubt, given the "utility" the 150 gives. If you go the route many people take (buy the hottest craft they can afford) you risk killing yourself because you can't handle the ship/circumstances.

Pick either risk, but yours is highly favorable.
Oh Yeah. I don't have a death wish, that's for sure, and I have two kids that expect dad home for dinner. I know that for at least 5 years I should be very at home with the little cessna. For me part of the reason to own a vehicle(aside from aircraft) is finding replacement parts and doing cosmetic upgrades such as new interiors, exterior upgrades like new wingtips that aren't cracked, and the like. This little plane is a little rough around the edges, but with a little work (and some coin) it will look prety nice when I get my hands on it. Its got a few interior panels that are busted, and both wingtips have age cracking that the previous owner didn't seem to have time or the caring to fix. That all adds up to more enjoyment for me if I get to tinker with things. PLus, if I want to take a little hop over to Millville or Cape may for an enjoyable afternoon, I can, whenever I want. That thought alone is what is appealing to me most right now.
 

Dana

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...PLus, if I want to take a little hop over to Millville or Cape may for an enjoyable afternoon, I can, whenever I want. That thought alone is what is appealing to me most right now.
Two other suggestions in the area: Ocean City, NJ, a short walk to the beach, and Jenkins Airport in Wyoming DE, which has (or had) an airplane junkyard... you might find the parts for your plane cheap. I used to fly to both places when I lived in NJ and had the T-Craft.

-Dana

When authorities warn you of the sinfulness of sex, there is an important lesson to be learned. Do not have sex with the authorities.
 

Dan Thomas

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Make sure this AD has been done:
http://rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_Library/rgAD.nsf/0/0e07725eea5d00368625766600560f0e/$FILE/2009-10-09%20R1.pdf

Don't buy used plastic wingtip or tail fairings. They're made of ABS that suffers in the UV and cold weather. Don't even buy new plastic parts from Cessna; they're still plastic and super-expensive. Buy tip fairings (as well as gear and strut fairings) from Stene Aviation in Montana; they're made of fiberglass and are far stronger, no heavier, much easier to repair, and much cheaper. Interior trim stuff comes from Vantage Plane Plastics. Again, sturdier and cheaper than Cessna. Google them both.

Dan
 

crazycanuck

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Aug 11, 2010
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Toronto, Canada
If you don't like building for the sake of building you are better to buy a plane. Even buy a finished homebuilt. It is really hard to finish such a long project without a passion for the actually process. Plus homebuilt aircraft rarely sell for much more than the cost of materials.
 

Nickathome

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Sep 29, 2009
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S.E. PA
Make sure this AD has been done:
http://rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_Library/rgAD.nsf/0/0e07725eea5d00368625766600560f0e/$FILE/2009-10-09 R1.pdf

Don't buy used plastic wingtip or tail fairings. They're made of ABS that suffers in the UV and cold weather. Don't even buy new plastic parts from Cessna; they're still plastic and super-expensive. Buy tip fairings (as well as gear and strut fairings) from Stene Aviation in Montana; they're made of fiberglass and are far stronger, no heavier, much easier to repair, and much cheaper. Interior trim stuff comes from Vantage Plane Plastics. Again, sturdier and cheaper than Cessna. Google them both.

Dan
Dan;

Thanks for the tip on the parts. I'll make note of both these places. I'll have to check into the AD you listed.
 

Nickathome

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S.E. PA
If you don't like building for the sake of building you are better to buy a plane. Even buy a finished homebuilt. It is really hard to finish such a long project without a passion for the actually process. Plus homebuilt aircraft rarely sell for much more than the cost of materials.
I love building things, I'm just afraid of it taking a long time and I become discouraged. This is why I decided to go with the Cessna for now. I think I'd be able to sell a Cessna quicker and would make more off the deal than a partially completed kit.
 

Edleg

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Apr 2, 2008
Messages
15
Join a club. I read somewhere that the average annual flight time for all private pilots averaged together is less than 24 hours (per year). That is 2 hours or less per month. Also I read somewhere that in a group of 8 co-owners or club members only like one or two pilots fly regularly. Scheduling is not a problem if you find the right group. And the maintenance burden is spread out across many wallets.
 
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