Picking a Plane

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Doran Jaffas

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Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Messages
428
Picking a Plane has got to be the most difficult decision in the world. Airplanes are like Motorcycles, seems like you need more than 1 to do different things in different Situation.

There also seems to be a standard progression pattern in Aircraft ownership where someone to buys a Certified AC at first. After a $10k annual or 2, they say to hell with this mess, and go light sport or homebuilt experimental. There are those with little financial concerns which this does not apply, but for the average Person, this seems accurate, no?

On top of the high cost of Certified AC, the further challenge one seems to face is Capability vs simply having a flying Toy. While I am sure it’s possible, you’re not going to fly that Trike thing to Alaska, are you?

And what of Fat@$$ Jake? What do you tell him? “Dude…you’re 3 hundo and that exceeds Max Gross takeoff weight without any fuel so…No, I can’t take you flying.” ??

Then there is the cost of even the "Toys." You can spank a buck twenty pretty quickly with a Light Sport Plane. Your new Light Sport to used Certified Airplane cost appears to be close which further muddies the water. Combine all of this with low plane inventory and here I sit. – Perplexed.

Mission: We are a family of 3 with a small fur-demon that may ride on the wife’s lap.

1.We would like to do Sub 200nm trips to visit family and friends and the occasional 700nm trip to remote family and friends.

2. Would like the plane to be somewhat STOL for off airport flying.

3. Would like the Plane to be able to convert to Floats.

4. Fly to Canada and Alaska on floats to fish

5. Would like the wings to fold for storage.

The Glasair Sportsman 2+2 Fits this mission to a T. Although it is still not a perfect plane. To build a new one will cost over $300k. To find a used one (if you can) will cost over $200k. Put either one on floats, and it will be more. Unfortunately, both ways are going to exceed my budget.

It is at this point where I am now forced to compromise. But to what end?

I could build a Zenith Super duty:

  • Wings do not fold
  • it is very slow.
  • I estimate the resale to be very low
I could buy a Maule M-7 235? This seems to be a somewhat viable option. I would lose the folding wings. Maintenance costs would be high. Not sure of insurance or caring for older fabric wings. I bet its also a pretty thirsty plane as well.



But hell… now that I am having to compromise in the first place, should I succumb to buying the “Toy” now?

Aerotrex A220

Kitfox S7

Aeroprakt A32

Ch750 STOL



All of these planes will be cheap to fly. I will lose the 3 place and Fat@$$ Jake still cannot go with me. This first 2 have wings that will fold for storage if desired and all will function as a floatplane for at least 1 person. Although, I am not certain if I can haul 2 people and Dead Fish while on floats. I suspect I cannot.



This is the situation from my lens and is my dilemma.



Thoughts?
Nope...
Picking a wife is . Then the airplane.
 

mquinn

Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2011
Messages
16
Location
Charlotte, NC
Define your mission - choose the plane that suits it in your budget... If one plane does not fit every mission you intend flying... that answer is even easier... get multiple planes! ;-)
 

mquinn

Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2011
Messages
16
Location
Charlotte, NC
Oh, and do not forget to calculate in insurance in your budget! My experimentals are 3x the cost to insure (even just liability) than a certified plane!
 

rv7charlie

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Joined
Nov 17, 2014
Messages
1,439
Location
Jackson
The article is dated on the line under the title; 2008. But the title is certainly misleading, at least for pilots in the USA. Four seats do not an LSA make. AeroNews reported its crash in 2009.

I do like the big cabin idea; if you can live with somewhat limited speeds, it certainly makes the plane more comfortable. I think Barnaby Wainfan is on the right path on designs for 'the rest of us'.
 

Pilot-34

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2020
Messages
875
I understand there is a home built aircraft similar to the republic Seabee , Is anyone here built one or something similar
 

Hephaestus

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Joined
Jun 25, 2014
Messages
2,194
Location
YMM
That article lacks a date... that’s sort of sloppy in a journalistic sense.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t the president of the company that made the Ecoflyer killed in one? I don’t recall the details, but I think it alluded to some problem with the flight characteristics that led to the crash.
SEPTEMBER 4, 2008 BY DAN JOHNSON
Believe they aluded more to get-home-itis and some very turbulent air - nothing conclusive with aircraft/design.
 

Hephaestus

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Joined
Jun 25, 2014
Messages
2,194
Location
YMM
NTSB Probable Cause
The in-flight separation of the left wing due to failure of one of the inboard attachments to the fuselage.
Ooops helps if I look for the final report eh?

Why would he keep flying for home if he knew he had an unexplained rough/difficult to control flight?
 

blane.c

Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
Joined
Jun 27, 2015
Messages
4,586
Location
capital district NY
Bearhawk or Lake or Cessna 185 or Piper Pacer.



Modified copies of the Piper Pacer with lengthened fuselage and larger engines like the 180hp Lyc and the 220hp Franklin have been built from scratch as EAB. They generally have names like Bushmaster or similar. Nice thing is there are factory parts for critical areas. Cub like performance with four seats. A nice thing to know is the Super Cub horizontal stabilizer is nearly two feet wider than the Pacer's and is a good option when building EAB.
 

Moosedude

Member
Joined
Apr 30, 2020
Messages
6
The way I see it, you have already named the number 1 choice, the glastar. The bear hawk is a good idea, or have a look at the Murphy Moose
 

WWhunter

Active Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2011
Messages
34
Location
Virginia/Minnesota
Murphy is NOT out of business!
You can consider a Rebel also, as it has been made as a 3-seater. But a used Super Rebel or Moose is the heavy hauler. Always wanted one but fuel burn is out of what I am comfortable with since I mainly fly solo.

As much as you 'think' you will be flying with your family, that number is generally much much lower. I had similar dreams as you when I started flying 34+ years ago. My 172 has taken me all over the lower 48 but most of the time, I was solo. Can't beat a 172 for reliability, cheapness to own and fly. I also have a Small STOL type for my 'fun' flying, it's a RANS S7. Working on finishing a Murphy Rebel also. When it is flying, I will be selling and gong to owning one airplane.

As someone mentioned about insurance, it's generally 3 times the cost of a similar certified plane. My liability and hull for the 172 is $500, The Rans is exactly 3 times that! I've checked on maule insurance in the past. WIth little to no Maule time, but with nearly 400TW time it was still extremely high. Same for anything on floats. I have 300+/- float hours and if you want to get a shock, check floatplane insurance.
 
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flienlow

Active Member
Joined
May 13, 2011
Messages
30
Location
Somewhere,CA
Murphy is NOT out of business!
You can consider a Rebel also, as it has been made as a 3-seater. But a used Super Rebel or Moose is the heavy hauler. Always wanted one but fuel burn is out of what I am comfortable with since I mainly fly solo.

As much as you 'think' you will be flying with your family, that number is generally much much lower. I had similar dreams as you when I started flying 34+ years ago. My 172 has taken me all over the lower 48 but most of the time, I was solo. Can't beat a 172 for reliability, cheapness to own and fly. I also have a Small STOL type for my 'fun' flying, it's a RANS S7. Working on finishing a Murphy Rebel also. When it is flying, I will be selling and gong to owning one airplane.

As someone mentioned about insurance, it's generally 3 times the cost of a similar certified plane. My liability and hull for the 172 is $500, The Rans is exactly 3 times that! I've checked on maule insurance in the past. WIth little to no Maule time, but with nearly 400TW time it was still extremely high. Same for anything on floats. I have 300+/- float hours and if you want to get a shock, check floatplane insurance.

Murphy- No answers to call/Emails/and their facebook is dead. I thought they went out of business.

I just got quoted $11,800 for a Maule. That shuts that game down. Now, I don't know what to get. Nothing seems to make sense right now. Nothing is available, or if it is, it is not really what I want.
 

blane.c

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HBA Supporter
Joined
Jun 27, 2015
Messages
4,586
Location
capital district NY
I guess nobody thinks of a Lake as a first choice which makes sense they are a compromise. 4 cylinders, 4 seats, Hull is tuff, reasonable performance land and sea. They got one for $60k in barnstormers, of course a good inspection is required and salt history needs to be known and yada yada but if it passes a good ownership inspection it would be a bargain.

 

Pilot-34

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2020
Messages
875
As a regular land plane a lake is not bad ,short takeoff ,Stout gear great payload ability.
Compare that to anything else on the water it is outstanding
 

Wind&Water

Member
Joined
Oct 4, 2020
Messages
5
Location
97FL- Weirsdale, FL
Owned a Lake 180 for four years. Bought it for $45,000. Had to have 25 hours of instruction from a Lake instructor for insurance at $100 per hour.(well worth it and not just for insurance). Insurance then cost me $2300/yr for full hull coverage in motion. Very nice well built airplane with great visibility and good performance. Could carry three adults on/off water. Only sold it to pay for an engine for my homebuilt. Seems like a bargain to me for a seaplane.
 

CBHurricane

Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2020
Messages
19
Location
Olds, Alberta, Canada
Similar to the Murphy Rebel SD/Yukon/Moose, have you looked at the Dream Tundra? Can build it as a tricycle gear or tailwheel which should help with insurance, built with hard points for floats as well I believe. DreamAircraft Tundra
Their email response and website does have something to be desired though.
 
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