Getting old and depressed...

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Sounds to me like you already have access to the absolute best partner . You and your son learning and building , making decisions together . My friend , it don't get no better than that . Get off that butt . You'll be surprised how it will sooth harsh memories of the past and set the stage for a really interesting and full filling future with your boy . Just get started and the rest will fall in place . I'm 72 with medical issues and don't really care if I finish my project but I'm havin a blast and the time of my life . Been doing this for 45 years and plan on tinkerin with it till the lights go out . Best wishes 🐒
 

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Daleandee

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Good advice! If you have any concerns about your health, stay clear of designs that require a 3rd class physical. Lot's of capable planes for sport pilots, probably even more after MOSAIC comes out.

I went to Sport Pilot as I was flying ultralights and ultralight trainers under the exemption. When Sport Pilot came along I was sad because of the removal of the exemption that allowed me to teach folks to fly very light aircraft. I know the exemption was abused by many but I had the privilege of working with a few guys that played by the rules, registered our trainers, took the classes, passed the FOI test, and all that was required. It was a great program and it's a shame that the big three letter groups at the time couldn't manage it any better than they did.

I don't have medical issues but I like Sport Pilot as it fits what I want to do with my flying, I don't have the medical headache(s) that some have because they did something foolish many years ago and now they are spending a fortune on SI or HIMS or some other goofy program.

My Sport compliant plane cruises at 120 knots, carries two fair sized folks, a bit over two hours fuel with reserve, and space for a bit of baggage. I'm limited to day VFR and have to be able to see the ground at all times. I'm OK with that. I have an endorsement for tail wheel & controlled airspace although finding me at a class C airport while not impossible is quite improbable.

And as Bigshu pointed out ... they may give the Sport Pilots more airplane to fly here in the near future.
 

Klaus Gebert

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Jan 5, 2022
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You have the biggest gift already, a son who wants to share an adventure with you and supports you. You two will be unstoppable and the memories you create together will be pricesless, special when you and your son get r e a l y old. I urge every aspiring pilot to learn first to learn to fly a sailplane. Best decision I did. ( Remember Sully from the Hutson River). Currently 70 old cancer surviver building a Zenith 750.
 

Brünner

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Apr 12, 2020
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336
Location
Beer country
...............

My 17yo son has an interest in Flying of which I'm really happy about. He knows how much I love planes, and he knows that I never really got to live out my passion. I've explained to him that I'm getting older now, and I can no longer build a plane, and because of that I've also lost hope of even getting my license. I've explained to him that I've pretty much given up on planes and that it's just simply too late for me. I've encouraged him to chase his dreams and if it's Flying, then go for it and to not let anything get in the way, as I have done.
............
Do you have any physical impediment that stops you to build a plane? Or is it just an idea in your head?

Please stop complaining and start doing. There are many, many people in much worse shape than you, yet they keep on going. You have a loving wife and family, lots of people don't even have that.
 

Yellowhammer

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Born In Alabama, reside: Louisiana (unfortunately)
2Fitty,

Go for it my friend. Welcome to HBA also. We are glad to have you sir.

NEVER and I mean never give up on your dreams pal. I am 46 and two years ago I got my chance and jumped on it like a chicken on a June bug. I will say that the stars had to line up just perfect for me to do it but the point is that I never gave up. I'm still building that plane and I am just as hungry today as I was when I was ten or eleven years old.

My entire family had been sick of hearing me talk about building my own plane. Sick of it! I didn't care I was determined. The Good Lord recognized and heard my prayers. I am not a monetarily wealthy man but I lead a very full and rich life. I see the glass half full and always have. I grew up hard and we didn't have a whole helluva lot but I chose to be a teacher and coach knowing I would never make any money doing it but it was a calling for me just as was building my own airplane.

I promise you that if you stay the course and never give up it will happen for you. I will be glad to help in any way I can. You have come to the right place for fellowship, and a source of aviation knowledge that is second to none.

Sincerely,
Yellowhammer
 

Yellowhammer

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Born In Alabama, reside: Louisiana (unfortunately)
Sounds to me like you already have access to the absolute best partner . You and your son learning and building , making decisions together . My friend , it don't get no better than that . Get off that butt . You'll be surprised how it will sooth harsh memories of the past and set the stage for a really interesting and full filling future with your boy . Just get started and the rest will fall in place . I'm 72 with medical issues and don't really care if I finish my project but I'm havin a blast and the time of my life . Been doing this for 45 years and plan on tinkerin with it till the lights go out . Best wishes 🐒



Well said sir, well said!
 

Tiger Tim

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Apr 26, 2013
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If you can plunk down the cash in one spot, I know of a partially completed GP-4 for sale. It’s being listed by an internet acquaintance so I can’t vouch for the workmanship but perhaps if you choose to view it you can bring along someone versed in wooden airplane construction for guidance.
 

saki2fifty

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May 13, 2022
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Tx
Well, it's Sunday and it's a new morning! I got my coffee, logged in, casually started browsing a few sites including hba... eventually came back to my original post to see the replies. Man, I had no real plans on getting emotional on my sunny Sunday morning. But... well, <cough> I did. You guys are awesome.

I wish you well on your journey. Determination can overcome depression, but it sounds like what used to be called 'middle-aged crazy', to me.

I think you hit the nail on the head. It is so funny that you said this because I've literally found myself googling this exact thing for weeks now, trying to figure out why all of the sudden @ 50 / 51 I'm feeling this way. It's bad, real bad. So much so that my wife is already tired of hearing about it. I think the problem is in my head... I've realized that all it took was blinking my eyes, and the next thing I know, 30 years have passed and have accomplished nothing but work, wife and kids. "Middle-Aged-Crazy" for sure! :) Hopefully, it's a fleeting moment.

Well, this ain't no mental health session, nor do I want to go down that path so I'll keep it positive as each of you have done!! :)

Welcome to the board.
In many ways, dreams can sustain us. They offer hope and even excitement where daily life may be bleak or mundane. It's amazing, really, that we can see a picture of a KR2 speeding through the clouds and our mind can imagine we are actually doing it. For a moment we can enjoy the idea, getting all the excitement of the real thing (or better than the real thing) without spending the money or years of work to do the real thing. There's nothing wrong with dreams.
If you build a plane of the type you are describing, you'll need have a license to fly it. Have you taken a lesson yet, or a "discovery flight"? Just an introductory lesson or two will give you something to chew on, to think about.
I've seen myself flying a KR2 / 1 through the clouds many, many times. And yes, when I was 18 I did take the discovery flight along with taking lessons, so I know for sure I'd love it.

From where I'm sitting you're still a young man. I was 53 when I started the build on the airplane I'm flying now.

Build a light sport compliant airplane and go get a light sport certificate. No medical needed and they are fairly fast (120 knots), take two people, and if you build it you can do all the maintenance and condition inspection.

You've had a rough road but you can believe that everyone here has true stories of being brought through difficult times. They don't like us talking about religion here but I know where my strength is found. Having said that I was in the mountains last week with the wife and spotted a sign that said, "What does not kill you makes you stronger ... except for bears, bears will kill you!"

Where are you located? Might be someone near you that can assist you with your journey.

Welcome to the forum!

PS: Stay away from the bears ... ;)
Haha... I'll keep that in mind. Bears; bears will kill you.
I've looked at many lsa's, but most are expensive kits with very few being plans built. For me, i'm all about scratchbuilding. I'm in the Houston area.

First off, you have plenty of time.

Choices of plane is tough. On the one hand, build your dream. If a GP4 is what you want, then go for it. That will win the shop war. This is really a two hobby hobby. One is building and one is flying, and in reality they have nothing to do with each other except airplanes in general. What would you do with a GP4 right out of the garage? Unless you know how to fly a high performance plane, which is really lots of practice in a high performance plane, it’s going to sit and look pretty.

You have a pilot path and an airplane path, and they need to meet. You really want to build an airplane that’s not too far above the flying skill of the day you finish. Why? Because you want to fly it. You don’t want someone else to be only able to fly it. Add to it, will the wife get into a plane like this? Most won’t. If they do, it takes years. Don’t bank on this being a travel solution. It needs to be a you solution. I would change the type a plane back to those early dreams. My personal pick would be a parasol. Pietenpol, Baking Duce, and my personal pick Acey Ducey. Sporty but tame.

If you are going to dive into pilot lessons and complete licenses and fly a bunch while you build, go for the travel planes. That’s not how it usually goes. Most end up concentrating on one or the other. I recommend getting the pilots license if you have to pick one or the other. First, the fun. Second, once you can fly, you can take people for rides and see if they like it. That can change the choice of what plane you really should build. One that does many things or one just for you.
I love building things, and love the "idea" of building a plane. What would I do out the gate when i've finished building my GP4? Upon completion I'd hopefully have 100+ hours by that time, jump into my beautiful streamlined beauty, attempt to fly it and die. So yes, I would not go that route. But boy, how much I'd love that 3 minutes flying it.

After talking to my wife yesterday and realistically, it would more than likely go as you've said. Lessons, license... and then, 152/172. Oh well, at least I'll be in the air!

Did you say 51 yeas old. My socks are older that you :) I'm 81 and will be 82 on 8/22/22. My youngest child of 3 is 57 years old. You are just as old as you think, quit thinking old. That's an order :)
When you stop dreaming you have died. NEVER stop dreaming. Work toward that dream with all of your might. Do something towards your dream everyday, even if that something is dreaming more. The only thing that can stop you is you.
I had to memorize this poem when I was in the 8th grade and will never forget it.

It Couldn’t Be Done by Edgar Albert Guest | Poetry Foundation
Haha.. yes, I did say i'm 51. You got it, will do! Thanks for the smile. You are absolutely right.



-------------------
Well, my goal this morning was to go to Costco with my wife, but before I did that, I was going to attempt replying to each and every one of you but simply cannot. My wife is now tugging on my ear telling me airplanes can wait.

You guys are awesome. I seriously had the biggest boost this morning after reading these replies, more than I've had in a long time. I've taken each reply on here to heart, and hopefully I'll be joining you all soon.
 

saki2fifty

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May 13, 2022
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Tx
As a quick note... I've also been looking at the CX7, which is an LSA. But a quick question to you official pilots; can an LSA really be a practical cross-country plane? with the speed caps and all?

(Just noticed that my response earlier from this morning is pending moderator approval. So I didn't just reply to y'alls awesome posts with just an LSA question!)

Ok, now heading off to Costco with wife...
 

Vigilant1

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As a quick note... I've also been looking at the CX7, which is an LSA. But a quick question to you official pilots; can an LSA really be a practical cross-country plane? with the speed caps and all?
It's obviously a subjective issue but I'd say an LSA can be used for practical and very enjoyable trips. The 600 lb useful load is considerable, and 120mph cruise is still faster than a car. Like all planes with low wing loadings, it will be a bumpy ride when the air is choppy. 20 gallons of fuel isn't a lot for travelling, but burning about 5 gph in cruise will still give you about 3 hour legs with comfortable reserves.

(Just noticed that my response earlier from this morning is pending moderator approval. So I didn't just reply to y'alls awesome posts with just an LSA question!)
As a new member, the forum spam protections may be in place. If so, they'll come off eventually.
 

ljpung

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Feb 5, 2022
Messages
2
Right now. Get your FAA 3rd class and convert that to a basic med. Fail to do that now by putting that off and you're posting more bad news. Put your dreams on hold for a second and do this now.

Flying a plane is the most wonderful thing in the world. But in your mind you have to be thinking as though that machine is waiting to kill you as soon as you let your guard down. Life is exactly the same way. Get your guard up get your third class medical so you can fly well into retirement with basic med. It is something you can do right now. Putting this off is the exact same thing as CFIT.

Sincerely,
Late in Life New Pilot
 

Tom DM

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EBGB Grimbergen airfield (N of Brussels, Belgium)
As a quick note... I've also been looking at the CX7, which is an LSA. But a quick question to you official pilots; can an LSA really be a practical cross-country plane? with the speed caps and all?

(Just noticed that my response earlier from this morning is pending moderator approval. So I didn't just reply to y'alls awesome posts with just an LSA question!)

Ok, now heading off to Costco with wife...

N2501A is a Thorp T211 with 0-200 // N667JS is a Indus Thorp(edo) T211 LSA with Jabiru 3300. The latter flies about 10 kts faster for the similar fuel burn. It runs a bit hotter and there is less to do in the cockpit (height compensating carbs). With the O-200 I am quite attentive to EGT. I like the O200 better and flew it quite some cross-country. The extra speed of the Jabiru 3300 seems not that liked from the airframe.

So the answer to your question is a resounding YES but... build in margins. The planes are not fast so flightplanning on longer flights is a bit tricky especially if you've got a headwind/ changing weather. I fly "with nature": on a headwind I hug terrain at 1000 ft AGL , with a tailwind I go high and enjoy the extra speed.

This is "recreational" aviation: do not look for practically and certainly not for economics. When you go on a journey, you might semi-know when you depart, but not when you arrive and even less when you get back. There are always surprises, some you will like, some a bit less. Keep an open mind, some extra cash and don't mind a stay-over if time, weather or clouds get against you. You are having fun, do not get stressed into a situation.

Refuse time contraints / strict agenda when (LSA) flying. If you have those: get your car. It will be faster and quite more reliable. Pay bloody attention to the weather: when you are driving your car withnessing a windmill near the highway which blades go into the clouds , that is far nicer than being there with your plane. Of course you won't be there with your plane, but if you were: confess your sorry ass to ATC, they won't like you but will save your bacon. Getting into IMC with an LSA is a bit dangerous. Makes one less cocky though.

To resume: when you go on cross-country on a LSA (or slower plane), you are going on an adventure. Like that or if not: get a fast plane (> 120 kts) so you can outrun weather.

Just my 2 eurocents and oh: have fun, enjoy the ride.
 

Tiger Tim

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^what he said. If you have realistic expectations of ‘fast’ and ‘practical’ an LSA-type airplane can get you around. In my neck of the woods a Cub can get me somewhere in half the time it takes to drive, but a car gets me there reliably in the rain or high winds. A slow airplane can still be fast.

I used to fly what was considered a very fast airplane for its class. We knew how our cruise figures stacked up against our competitors and we’d often visibly pass them in cruise and tease their pilots about it later. The job stroked the ego pretty well because we felt like we were at the top of the food chain. The thing is, on a six hundred mile flight our speed advantage equated to us taking off right after them and getting there maybe fifteen minutes before the other guys. Our typical hundred and fifty mile flights were basically a draw, all speed advantage could be lost in a runway change or ATC sequencing. Point is if you can write pride out of the equation (and very few pilots can), any airplane is pretty fast.
 

Vigilant1

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For various practical reasons described here, if I have a particular day that I need to arrive at my destination, then 500 miles is about as far as I can plan on taking my plane. And it wouldn't matter if my plane cruised at 200 knots or 100 knots.
Basically, driving is always my backup plan, and 500-600 miles is about as far as I like to drive in a day.
 

Tom DM

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For the Thorp T-18 you need to be a skilled pilot.


Obviously I have a soft for anything Thorp related.

Yet my instructor - then God- told me: if you make/ buy/fly/ have it, you will land it... or not. Thy shall not go around, thy shall find a way.
So if you buy/fly/ land a T18, you will learn, you will become a skilled pilot... or not.

Had similar told me in the army, the exact words would not fit into a this "political correct" forum and would get me some "teaching" from the administrator, so I will not say ;)

See: even I learn!

Blue skies!
 

Daleandee

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Some don't realize that the 120 knot cruise allowed for sport planes is at continuous cruise at sea level. Sonex states that at 8000' with 120 hp that their plane will cruise at 148 knots (170 mph). All this to say that 120 knots for light sport isn't a shabby number as that is faster than many training aircraft (and others) such as a Cessna 150 & 172, Piper Cherokee, Rockwell 112 Commander, etc..

The ability to do my own work, sign it off, not have to deal with the AME folks, burn auto fuel, yada, yada, yada, just makes Light Sport a good fit for my intentions. At one time I considered getting my PPL so I could get a larger plane but I have another seat in the one I'm flying and many times that one is empty as it is ...
 
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