Now getting serious about moving forward with this idea.

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Joined
Apr 29, 2010
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5
Location
Cleveland tn
Hello all,
This is something I have been thinking about for years and I am now getting serious about moving forward with this idea. I am gonna need a lot of hand holding so I hope to make friends with some people whom enjoy answering a LOT of questions.

Chuck
 
Joined
Apr 29, 2010
Messages
5
Location
Cleveland tn
I have been looking into getting either a Experimental or Ultralight. I love the thought of flying and as of yet have no formal training. But no matter if I choose to go after a Experimental or Ultralight for my first experience I do plan on pursuing some type of formal lessons. I guess that is why I signed up here was to read as much from you guys as I can so my final decision will be as informed as possible.
I live like 200 maybe 230 miles from my family in Ga and it would be nice to fly down when ever time permits to visit my mom. In my thinking if I get the right Experimental then this could be something I would find with in my reach. What do you people out here think.

Chuck
 

lr27

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Nov 3, 2007
Messages
3,822
If you mostly want to get somewhere, you could probably do it in fewer hours by walking than by building your own plane. Takes a lot of time. (Hmmm... let's say 2,000 hours (wild guess) times 3mph divided by 440 miles round trip, ok, I guess that's only 13 trips on foot, but over 200 car trips.) I suppose buying something is another story. There are used certified airplanes as well, some of which aren't horribly expensive. You're probably not going that far very often in an ultralight! Probably cheaper, tho. FAA is making it tough to get ultralight training right now.
 

Dana

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CT, USA
Some comments in no particular order:

  • For ultralights no training is legally required, but still necessary if you want to survive... glad you're planning on it. For experimental, you will need instruction leading to at least a Sport Pilot certificate.
  • You won't be making routine 200 mile trips in an ultralight, which cruises slower than your car.
  • Unless you have an instrument rating, a small plane isn't the most practical means of transportation. That said, I routinely flew a 100 mile cross country to visit my parents in my Taylorcraft... but only if I could be absolutely certain of good weather through the time of my return trip. Half the time I drove instead, or postponed my trip.
  • There's a common saying: "If you want to fly, buy. If you want to build, build." A used airplane is almost certainly cheaper than building a comparable kit plane... but without the satisfaction of building your own. It's all down to what you want.
  • The best place to start is to take some introductory flying lessons at your local airport, and get a sense of what it's all about. You may find yourself fascinated by flying, even without going anywhere (most of use here are!). OTOH, you may find its not for you.

-Dana

Do YOU trust a government that won't obey it's OWN LAWS?
 
Joined
Apr 29, 2010
Messages
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Location
Cleveland tn
I more than likely will buy a used one than to build one. With my company taking up all of my time that is better for me. I would love to just go out and fly an afternoon away but going to see my family is a nice bonus. People have said driving is faster than flying but (1) Considering that I can fly pretty much a straight line all the way except going around Atlanta. I don't think you can fly over Atlanta airspace with what I am looking at getting and (2) if you can fly why would you want to drive? Even if it does take longer. What are you gonna enjoy more. Being cooped up in the car fight through traffic or just sitting back and enjoying the view and gaining the experience. To me when flying it boils down to getting up there and breathing the air and being one with the wind. I think I would fly even if it took twice as long.

But the input I am getting from you guys is great. Thanks

Chuck
 

bob.shea

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May 24, 2009
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74
Location
wonderlake IL USA
Welcome
Go to your local airport, Take a intro flight. if you like it start taking lessons. you will never regret learning to fly.
 
Joined
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Cleveland tn
First of next week I am trying to leave a window open to go out to the airport and look someone up. Since I plan on taking lessons no matter what I decide to fly. I think even if I fly something that don't even require a licence I will only benefit from taking the lessons and maybe if money works out in a couple of years I can move up from whatever I start with. I know once I start I am only gonna want to do more of it. I am like this with anything I take on.
 

lr27

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On those occasions when it takes longer, it may take a LOT longer if the weather doesn't clear up conveniently.

Although I'm sure training in a regular airplane won't hurt, I'm told that if you want to do ultralights, there should be some specific training in something similar. (slower, draggier) Then there's paragliders and "trikes" (i.e. a hang glider with a go kart under it, sorta).
 

Hot Wings

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I more than likely will buy a used one than to build one.
If you can afford to buy, consider buying - before - you start taking lessons. A decent 150 or 172 with mid time engine can be had fairly reasonably and after you have finished your lessons you might even make a few $'s selling it if the economy improves. Big IF.

Wish I'd done it that way rather than renting. Would have been many $'s ahead, but at the time it was hard enough to scrape together the $110 for the next hour.
 
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Cleveland tn
When I buy something I really don't want to buy something that I have to turn around and sell after I out grow it 1 or 2 years later. I would prefer to get some I can fly with for several years then sell and move up. I am not sure as of yet what that would be but I am looking online and reading everything I can to help inform myself. If I got something before I was ready to fly it would kill me. To have something sitting outside that I can't fly because of my confidence level. I would go nutz.
 

Joe Fisher

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Feb 10, 2007
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Location
Galesburg, KS South east Kansas
First of all you need to take some lessons before you commit to anything else. I would recommend you get your self a log book and it is your log book not instructors or the flight schools. ASA STANDARD PILOT LOG 30 from Aircraft Spruce
You will not learn develop a lot of skill in the first few lessons so take lessons at more than one school and learn about learning to fly. Get impressions about the different airplanes find what you like don't just take the first thing that comes along. Don't make any decisions about buying an airplane until you have soloed. These things will save you a lot of grief.
 

lr27

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Nov 3, 2007
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There's some sort of big promotion coming up, a learn to fly day. May 15 I think. At a nearby airport they're doing intro rides for $40. (And they even have a Terra Fugia visiting, for those with too much cash.) I think there are going to be some trikes there too, but I don't know the charge in that case. Maybe there's such an event near you. I think it's supposed to be a national promotion. Or maybe I'm pessimistic and $40 is the going rate for an intro flight??
 

snaildrake

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Joined
Mar 19, 2010
Messages
247
Location
Albuquerque, NM USA
There's some sort of big promotion coming up, a learn to fly day. May 15 I think. At a nearby airport they're doing intro rides for $40. (And they even have a Terra Fugia visiting, for those with too much cash.) I think there are going to be some trikes there too, but I don't know the charge in that case. Maybe there's such an event near you. I think it's supposed to be a national promotion. Or maybe I'm pessimistic and $40 is the going rate for an intro flight??
So glad you mentioned this, lr27! ILTFD is sponsored by EAA and AOPA, also has its own web site:

International Learn to Fly Day

There's a search page to find out what is happening near you - the closest for me was 100 miles, but you may be luckier.
 

lr27

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Nov 3, 2007
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10 and 16 miles or so for me, but I've got something else going on. You might check your local airports. I looked at that list a while ago and didn't find anything nearby. Perhaps an airport near you has been dragging their feet.
 

Nickathome

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Sep 29, 2009
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758
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S.E. PA
My advice, definitely learn to fly first. Better to hold off on buying that plane, or kit aircraft until after you get your ticket. From what I was told, if you build first you'll never get your license. If I were you, get the license, or at least enough training to be confident in your solo(if an ultralight is your passion)first.

That said, as to a flying school, check the school out thoroughly. Find out who the instructors are. The latter is very important. If you walk in to the FBO or wherever and find that all the instructors are 22 year old kids fresh out of flight school themselves.....immediately walk out. The place I learned to fly had nothing but kid instructors and all were there for one reason and one reason only, and that was to build their hours, so they could then apply for jobs with the airlines. Once they got picked for an airline job, away they went and the students were left with their joystick in their hands and had to find another instructor. I went through 5 or 6 instructors before I got my license. Only reason I stayed with this outfit was because I had the bulk of my time with them, and was used to their planes, so I figured I stick with them until the end. Would I do the same now, HELL NO! Looking back I made that place rich by my redundant lessons getting the new instructors caught up to my speed. Do yourself a favor, find a good school with well maintained aircraft staffed with instructors who are there to teach, not to get their hours built up so they can go apply for a right seat job in a UPS 757.......

And as for buying, you might want to think about that too. Sure, you can get a used C-150 or 172 for a fairly decent price these days, but consider what upkeep will cost, not to mention the annuals, and if the engine is up there and close to overhaul, what that may cost. In the end you just may be better off building a kit. But, do like I said and learn to fly first. It may just save your life someday.
 
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fly_boy_bc

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Aug 20, 2008
Messages
236
Location
Agssiz BC
My advice, definitely learn to fly first. Better to hold off on buying that plane, or kit aircraft until after you get your
ticket. From what I was told, if you build first you'll never get your license.................do like I said and learn to fly first. It may just save your life someday.
I most wholehartedly DISagree! I bought a 90% done 90% to go Fisher Super Koala for training puropses. Actually this plane has a few hours on it but has had a new engine installed. This plane will allow me to finish up my flght training and build time. When I have done that I can sell and trade up as desired.

I still have not spent as much as it would cost to learn to fly in the conventional manner but I will soon have my license AND a plane! Just make sure you get something you can handle and that a flight instructor will feel comfortable with.

NOT a Sonerai or a Murphy Renegade but perhaps a Kitfox or a Super Koala like mine. Do NOT get a Belchfire 2000 because you love them. Get a TRAINER preferably a taildragger (you might as well learn to be a pilot right-off instead of a plane driver who needs retraining to fly conventionally geared aircraft). My aircraft came with conventional gear AND floats for about the normal cost of training. Would I do it this way again YOU BET!

Gary (Fly_boy_bc)

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