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If Cessna/Piper/Beech released the plans for X, would you build one?

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pfarber

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Since most of us trained in the 'standard' trainers, if given the opportunity to build one, would you?

Yes, there are 'cheap' certified airplanes, but staying in the certified world means bearing costs that are, well, unbearable.

Are their E/ABs that mimic the 172 and Archer etc/al in size/speed?
 

BJC

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if given the opportunity to build one, would you?
No.
Are their E/ABs that mimic the 172 and Archer etc/al in size/speed?
There was a scratch built versions of the 172 (or 182, not sure which), built by a now-deceased homebuilder in our EAA chapter. There was a kit out of Canada for a 185, IIRC. There is / was a kit for a Comanche. There was one kit for a PA-18.


BJC
 

TFF

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Big project way more expensive than just buying a 172. I believe there have been C170 and C180 reverse engineered and made experimental. They would be very popular if you could make money with them. Alaska would be full of them. It’s one time experimental hurts value and usage. A Lycoming 540 in a C180 would have fights to get one.
 

pfarber

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That doesn't look affordable at all. I'm thinking all up for $30k build. Problem with these $100k+ kits is that you could fly a certified AC for less. Take a 172. Buy for $45k, that's $65k of flying before you get to the cost of an E/AB.

To me the allure of the E/AB is the lower cost.

Take a Wittman or Bede, you can get it done for less than $20k.. but they are not as docile as the 172.
 

fly2kads

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I've always thought that an E/AB version of the Cessna 120/140 could be fun.
 

mcrae0104

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A CH 640 is not that different from an Arrow on paper. Of course it's been discontinued, so that may say something about the EAB market's desire for a plane similar to a standard airworthiness certificate trainer.
 

Turd Ferguson

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Since most of us trained in the 'standard' trainers, if given the opportunity to build one, would you?
No. If you had every part to a 172, you could not build it at home without extensive jigs and other fixtures. It's not "builder friendly" for other than a production line.
There have been some reverse engineered versions but they have many of the complexities removed.
 

Mark Z

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It’s going to be a hard find to beat any flavor of Van’s aircraft. Even at that, it’s less expensive to buy rather than build, unfortunately for us DIY types. At my age/condition, I’m looking for comfort and ease of access. It gets harder and harder for me to mount a Van’s airplane. It’s also a nice day when you can call it done; just park it and drive it.
 

rv7charlie

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That doesn't look affordable at all. I'm thinking all up for $30k build. Problem with these $100k+ kits is that you could fly a certified AC for less. Take a 172. Buy for $45k, that's $65k of flying before you get to the cost of an E/AB.

To me the allure of the E/AB is the lower cost.

Take a Wittman or Bede, you can get it done for less than $20k.. but they are not as docile as the 172.
My response was to name one of the actual kits that TFF referred to in the previous post. A C180/185 is not a trainer anyway, and if $100K seems expensive, price a 50 year old flying C185.

You could probably build a C180 clone for $20K worth of raw aluminum (and stick 'trike' gear under it to make it a 182), but you're not going to get a *kit* of prefabricated parts for that. In fact, there are very few, if any, metal kits that are that cheap. An RV3 kit is not much more than the address of the bauxite mine, and it's currently over $22K. I have serious doubts that you could finish a Tailwind from raw stock for $20K, and there's no way to do it with a BD4B without, at minimum, their spar, which was a custom extrusion. And neither of those are trainers, either.

If wishes were horses.....

Charlie
 

BJC

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Take a Wittman or Bede, you can get it done for less than $20k.. but they are not as docile as the 172.
It has been over 50 years since I flew an 85 HP Tailwind, but I recall docile handling. Don’t have any experience with the higher HP versions.


BJC
 

TFF

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The differences in Tailwinds are weight. No electrical Tailwind with a Continental 4 ends up 200-300 lbs less at gross than the modern version. Same wing but the tips. Different expectations.
 

pfarber

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My response was to name one of the actual kits that TFF referred to in the previous post. A C180/185 is not a trainer anyway, and if $100K seems expensive, price a 50 year old flying C185.

You could probably build a C180 clone for $20K worth of raw aluminum (and stick 'trike' gear under it to make it a 182), but you're not going to get a *kit* of prefabricated parts for that. In fact, there are very few, if any, metal kits that are that cheap. An RV3 kit is not much more than the address of the bauxite mine, and it's currently over $22K. I have serious doubts that you could finish a Tailwind from raw stock for $20K, and there's no way to do it with a BD4B without, at minimum, their spar, which was a custom extrusion. And neither of those are trainers, either.

If wishes were horses.....

Charlie
I specifically stated PLANS. Kits up the cost significantly for a few hundred hours saved. E/ABs are about the money, not at about the time. You can always buy a used E/AB and get started on day 1.

Age is not really an issue. Yes, the GA fleet is old, but save for one or two notable exceptions they are not falling apart (there is a Piper with a spar issue IIRC).

I don't think a 172 close would be significantly complex to built. It would need some ingenuity to reduce the complexity... but people have made semi-monoque E/ABs in the past.
 

pfarber

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The Bear Hawk does quite well for a kit
I specifically stated PLANS. And a completed Bear is $100k. Again, cheaper to buy used GA and fly it. Would you get 'BearHawk' performance? No. But the Bear is a pretty niche AC.
 

rv7charlie

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I specifically stated PLANS.
No, you didn't. I quote:

Since most of us trained in the 'standard' trainers, if given the opportunity to build one, would you?

Yes, there are 'cheap' certified airplanes, but staying in the certified world means bearing costs that are, well, unbearable.

Are their E/ABs that mimic the 172 and Archer etc/al in size/speed?

EAA 1299xxx
EAA Chapter 122

I got a Coonhound, a Mountain Cur and a BD-4B

unquote.
 

TFF

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I have Bearhawk plans. It’s too big a project for me. I would scratch build. Plans or kit is unimportant if talking the actual building of something. At least a Bearhawk will not have funky machined parts like a Cessna. Not hard but a long road.
 

Pops

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I have plans for the Cessna factory wing jig used on the one hundred series of Cessna aircraft from the engineer that designed it.
Got it many years ago.
 

Doran Jaffas

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It has been over 50 years since I flew an 85 HP Tailwind, but I recall docile handling. Don’t have any experience with the higher HP versions.


BJC
My Tailwind W8 is 0-200 powered. Not the power house 0-320 but it works very well. Though sensitive in handling the stall, on mine anyway, is nicer than the 172 but comparing these two aircraft is apples and oranges.
 
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