Picking a Plane


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Well-Known Member
Nov 17, 2014
With some careful thought while planning the a/c systems, the vast majority of circuit protections don't need to be within reach (parse the regs carefully).

I have two circuit breakers in my RV7's panel; one to control each alternator. And they do double duty as switches. Everything else is on one of two fuse buses, which are hidden below/behind the panel.

BTW, six buses in a single engine piston a/c is pretty insane, by any standard. How is a single pilot supposed to manage that if there's an electrical issue?




Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
Log Member
May 25, 2015
Don't forget to also be prepared for the 'perfect' aircraft to be introduced soon after you become committed to your first choice of aircraft. Went through all this years ago and settled on the 750 STOL. I like STOL capability, but it wasn't a major requirement by any means. I wanted a bit higher cruise than what the STOL offered, but as others have amply mentioned, almost any choice will be a compromise of sorts. Sure enough, not very long after my STOL kit purchase, they introduced the 750 Cruzer, which was pretty much just what I had been looking for. Finances weren't healthy enough at the time to absorb the loss from selling the STOL kit, and then switching to the Cruzer, so I stuck with what I had. It doesn't bother me much anymore. I've always been a low and slow, enjoy the scenery type of guy anyway. I don't really anticipate much cross country, but it will still be better than a road trip as long as I pack light. So now I'm happy with my choice again. Just be prepared for something better to come out after you've committed to another aircraft. An unfortunate axiom is that there will always be something better coming out when it isn't convenient.

I will note though, before I began to fear flunking a third class medical and losing my flying privileges permanently, the Bearhawk was my hands down first choice. It still would be if I was confident in passing a medical. Wasn't looking forward to doing fabric work, but the capabilities of that aircraft were just too good to pass up.
Fabric work isn't too hard and now there's basic med. Ok I'm an instigator


Well-Known Member
Feb 20, 2019
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.

Well, you could take up Chinese checkers. They can be "entertaining" and the price is right. Otherwise, spend the big bucks and at least have some fun, if you disregard the wallet. You only go around once, and the kiddos will blow the inheritance in a New York minute without giving it a thought. Growing too old and having the big $$$$'s and wishing you had done it ain't as satisfying as being poor and doing it. Ya makes your bed and then ya gotta sleep in it.


Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Apr 8, 2004
Fabric work isn't too hard and now there's basic med. Ok I'm an instigator
True, but my concern was you were permanently prohibited from using either Basic Med or Sport Pilot if you ever flunked a third class physical. Back then I was on a medication that was mostly used to treat a disqualifying condition. Even though I didn't have that condition and was taking it for a different reason, people in the medical community repeatedly kept assuming I had that disqualifying condition. It didn't take much imagination for me to realize that mistake only had to happen once in the 3rd class physical process to permanently prevent me from ever flying anything above an ultralight. A bit paranoid maybe, but I'd experienced first hand how often that mistaken assumption occurred, and I just wasn't willing to risk it.

And now I've taken us way off topic. My apologies.

EDIT: And I could do fabric. Took one of those EAA classes they offer. I just didn't like it.