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Deltafox

How much does it cost to buy a used SportCruiser?

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OK, I know this is dangerous territory but I'll start the discussion. When you see that beautiful picture in the trade paper consider this:

I have a 2010 PiperSport. She flies about 100 hours (average) each year. I spend about $1K for my annual (100 hour) inspection.

Also, I've had this work done:

Rubber $5K  
Nose Strut $6.2K  
Main strut $2K  
BRS $1.5K  
ADSB $4 to 5K  

Of all of theses, the Rubber Replacement was the most invasive, most troublesome maintenance I had done (by a major Rotax "Specialist" in central Florida).

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Hi Delta thanks for sharing. Very helpful for me to plan my airplane ownership costs. Quick follow up.  Over what period of time were those expenses incurred.

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1 minute ago, atrosa said:

Hi Delta thanks for sharing. Very helpful for me to plan my airplane ownership costs. Quick follow up.  Over what period of time were those expenses incurred.

Keep in mind that costs vary greatly all over the country. I didn't spend anywhere near those prices as Deltafox did and it has nothing to do with the fact I'm E-LSA. If you ask 10 owners what they spent on the same repairs and maintenance you'll get 10 different answers. It is of course ok to hope for the best but plan for the worst. 

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Ignorance is bliss.  I have never put a pencil to the costs, because to me it doesn't matter.  Its expensive, but most hobbies such as this are.  Plus its not a one time fee its a pay as you go kind of thing. I think proper upkeep will pay off in the long run. I do 25 hour oil changes not 50.

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2 minutes ago, ShawnM said:

Keep in mind that costs vary greatly all over the country. I didn't spend anywhere near those prices as Deltafox did and it has nothing to do with the fact I'm E-LSA. If you ask 10 owners what they spent on the same repairs and maintenance you'll get 10 different answers. It is of course ok to hope for the best but plan for the worst. 

you get those pencil whipped condition inspections.   LOL sorry man I just couldn't resist.  :)

 

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4 minutes ago, ronin5573 said:

you get those pencil whipped condition inspections.   LOL sorry man I just couldn't resist.  :)

I expect these from you now, if you didn't write something funny I'd be disappointed. :D 

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Oh man, I don’t dare write down the all-in expenses, especially where my wife could find them.  First I’d cry, then my wife would make me cry again. 😜

The nose gear was spendy, as was the left (port) fuel tank replacement and fitting of the return fuel hose.  But both of them collectively pale in comparison to annual hangar and insurance costs. 😳. Oooh, I’m feels woozy and better sit down...

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25 minutes ago, atrosa said:

Over what period of time were those expenses incurred.

I went through each version of nose strut. Sooo, actually started in 2012. http://lsaeronaut.blogspot.com/2012/11/at-us-sport-aircraft.html. Rubber was done in 2015.

 

25 minutes ago, ShawnM said:

If you ask 10 owners what they spent on the same repairs and maintenance you'll get 10 different answers.

Yep. ...and then we get back to faith, confidence and trusting the knowledge of the person doing the work. (Start with the cost of the parts from CAI then add the labor rate of your favorite A&P.)

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56 minutes ago, ronin5573 said:

Ignorance is bliss.  I have never put a pencil to the costs, because to me it doesn't matter.  Its expensive, but most hobbies such as this are.  Plus its not a one time fee its a pay as you go kind of thing. I think proper upkeep will pay off in the long run. I do 25 hour oil changes not 50.

This.

When I stress about various costs of maintenance ( floats price etc ) my wife always likes to remind me - “this thing is flying us around , pay for it !” 

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What is the going cost for an A&P in this category.    I gaurantee what the company is charging you we mechanics dont see that.  I would guess the average mechanic makes $15-25hr.  I know some companies charge as high as $80-95

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5 hours ago, rtk said:

Oh man, I don’t dare write down the all-in expenses, especially where my wife could find them.

I know what you've been through, I hope you dont write this stuff down anywhere she could find it. :o If you do show it to her make sure it's after my visit at the end of the month. I dont want to visit you in the hospital. :D

It's funny, I'll spend whatever it takes to replace parts on my plane without hesitation but spending it anywhere else I have a hard time letting go of a penny. I just hemmed and hawed for a week just to buy new CV axles for my SUV. Sad part is I NEED them also. It's just easier when it come to my plane.

 

1 hour ago, Necco said:

What is the going cost for an A&P in this category.    I gaurantee what the company is charging you we mechanics dont see that.  I would guess the average mechanic makes $15-25hr.  I know some companies charge as high as $80-95

That's the point Necco, LSRM rates (and A&P I assume) are all over the map depending on your geographic location. I know 3 really good INDEPENDENT mechanics, all less than a 40 minute flight away, that are very affordable and won't break the bank. Some owners here do go to the larger shops and pay the premium prices. Everyone has their favorite and will pay whatever it costs for peace of mind.   

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If it flies, floats or fornicates it's cheaper to rent.  There is little "business" case to be made in ownership at 100 hrs per year which I plan to shoot for.  But I did it anyway because, well it's worth it to me.  You can't rent one here and even if you could the scheduling restrictions would get unpleasant,   I just bought my 2010 PS so the previous guy did the nose leg debacles, SBs and agreed to reduce price for upcoming BRS repack and ADS-B and the annual was just done.  I fully expect a surprise any day now.  Add in hanger (biggest yearly expense), deposit for hanger, insurance, fuel, doo-dads for the hanger, my plane needs new carpet, tires in 75 hrs, iPad mini, Foreflight, Lightspeed Zulu 3s, fuel for the year, annuals, oil changes, logistics of repositioning the airplane for LSRM, I just stop counting. The annual expenses are about $10K per year...about $100/hr.  They rent for about $125.  And you have depreciating asset.  Take what you think it costs and multiply by 1.5 and you're pretty close.  But who cares...Fly and have fun.  And hey, the hanger will serve a dual function as a man cave.

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15 hours ago, FlyAgain said:

If it flies, floats or fornicates it's cheaper to rent.  There is little "business" case to be made in ownership at 100 hrs per year which I plan to shoot for.  But I did it anyway because, well it's worth it to me.  You can't rent one here and even if you could the scheduling restrictions would get unpleasant,   I just bought my 2010 PS so the previous guy did the nose leg debacles, SBs and agreed to reduce price for upcoming BRS repack and ADS-B and the annual was just done.  I fully expect a surprise any day now.  Add in hanger (biggest yearly expense), deposit for hanger, insurance, fuel, doo-dads for the hanger, my plane needs new carpet, tires in 75 hrs, iPad mini, Foreflight, Lightspeed Zulu 3s, fuel for the year, annuals, oil changes, logistics of repositioning the airplane for LSRM, I just stop counting. The annual expenses are about $10K per year...about $100/hr.  They rent for about $125.  And you have depreciating asset.  Take what you think it costs and multiply by 1.5 and you're pretty close.  But who cares...Fly and have fun.  And hey, the hanger will serve a dual function as a man cave.

What about figuring out unquantifiable plane ownership costs.  Such as knowing always the state of your aircraft.  Knowing how much gas is in it what kind and what quality.  Knowing its maintained correctly without having to dig though logs .  Knowing the last guy to fly it was you and knowing how it was flown and more importantly how it was landed. Not seeing a single INOP sticker in my cockpit. You cant put a price on piece of mind, and me knowing my plane and its state before opening my hanger door its priceless to me. 

 

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1 hour ago, ronin5573 said:

What about figuring out unquantifiable plane ownership costs.  Such as knowing always the state of your aircraft.  Knowing how much gas is in it what kind and what quality.  Knowing its maintained correctly without having to dig though logs .  Knowing the last guy to fly it was you and knowing how it was flown and more importantly how it was landed. Not seeing a single INOP sticker in my cockpit. You cant put a price on piece of mind, and me knowing my plane and its state before opening my hanger door its priceless to me. 

 

With the weather that we are currently having, it is possible that you cannot fly for weeks at a time.  The first break in the weather and you KNOW that everyone is going to want to be airborne.  Whether it is a club or rental aircraft, there will never be enough for those high demand times.   Forget about taking a last minute trip over the 4th of July weekend or Labor Day, or name your favorite holiday.  Those are the times that you need to have a plane of your own.  

I have not retired and getting an airplane should open up the possibilities of where we can go on long weekends.  Let us get away more often and to places outside of the comfortable car driving range for a weekend trip.

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21 hours ago, ronin5573 said:

What about figuring out unquantifiable plane ownership costs.  Such as knowing always the state of your aircraft.  Knowing how much gas is in it what kind and what quality.  Knowing its maintained correctly without having to dig though logs .  Knowing the last guy to fly it was you and knowing how it was flown and more importantly how it was landed. Not seeing a single INOP sticker in my cockpit. You cant put a price on piece of mind, and me knowing my plane and its state before opening my hanger door its priceless to me. 

These are the things that give me peace of mind and as Ronin5573 stated, I know the EXACT condition of my plane BEFORE I open the hangar door to go flying. The ability to decide on a whim, "hey, I wanna go flying RIGHT NOW" and know that I can is priceless. Knowing the maintenance status and that all work was done properly is also a very big deal. It's rewarding to me to be a pilot AND own my own plane. I feel very fortunate to be an owner of a beautiful SportCruiser and that I can also operate and fly within my budget.

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Thats great to hear shawnM and ronnin5573, sounds like you two are on top of things, lately i have ran across sellers who just dont know, or their pockets are that deep.  

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if you enjoy doing mechanical work like a hobby and get the training and tools to do maintenance on yr plane; this is a huge argument for buying and owning yr own plane. you get twice the fun in flying and working on it and of course saving lots of money.

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 the cost of owning and amount of enjoyment of plane ownership are the two things to consider before a purchase.  doing yr own maintenance reduces the cost  and increases yr fun of owning a plane. argument against purchase then is greatly reduced

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Still have to buy tooling to do your own maintenance.   Jacks. Torque wrenches.  Spring scales ( that should be calibrated) extra cost.  Protractor for control deflection. Grease and gun. Oil filter wrench and cutter.  Safety wire and pliers.  Screw gun, light , inspection mirror,place to put your greasy oily rags and gloves. Special tooling from rotax.  Computer or printer or ipad because you have to have documentation while doing the work. Compression tester.  Purge fixtures for oil. Maybe even a solvent tank.  A 10x magnify glass.  Magnet for oil filter particles. Torque stripe. A contraption for the fuel tightness check. (Regulated).    Sounds like a smal fbo in the long run. And those are just off the top of my head.  

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8 hours ago, Necco said:

Still have to buy tooling to do your own maintenance.   Jacks. Torque wrenches.  Spring scales ( that should be calibrated) extra cost.  Protractor for control deflection. Grease and gun. Oil filter wrench and cutter.  Safety wire and pliers.  Screw gun, light , inspection mirror,place to put your greasy oily rags and gloves. Special tooling from rotax.  Computer or printer or ipad because you have to have documentation while doing the work. Compression tester.  Purge fixtures for oil. Maybe even a solvent tank.  A 10x magnify glass.  Magnet for oil filter particles. Torque stripe. A contraption for the fuel tightness check. (Regulated).    Sounds like a smal fbo in the long run. And those are just off the top of my head.  

I don’t have any of those tools, is that bad?:o I've been doing all my maintenance with a screwdriver and a pair of pliers and getting by, I need more? :D

As mikeomaha mentions, I get great joy in working on my own plane and it is “twice the fun” for me personally. Yes, it does save me a lot of money and again, I know things were done properly and thoroughly. This adds to the “priceless” column for me. 

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2 minutes ago, Necco said:

Just wait till you do your first blown annual.  

Just kidding, I have everything on your list except for the compression tester. 

You forgot about the carb sync tool. I’ll be buying both for my first annual in November. 

Did I also mention that you’ll be there to oversee everything? :D

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