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Showing content with the highest reputation on 12/03/2016 in all areas

  1. 10 points
    Sorry but I'm not sure that was unreasonable. I assume you really were not prepared to go buy a tube & tire from ASpruce and you did not have tools to block up the nose gear, remove the wheel, split the rims, lube, inflate and mount the tube.tire, torque the bolts, etc. A business marking up parts from inventory that they have to keep and charging for their time at their shop rate seems reasonable to me. Maybe that A&P was sitting there waiting for you to need emergency service but more likely they pulled him off a job for a regular customer to deal with a transient. Maybe we need a AAA for airplanes. OTOH, I had a flat tire @ KOSH this year. $275 under the circumstances would have been very acceptable. It turns out that KOSH is probably the best possible place to need help. Volunteers towed the plane to their maintenance pen where I was able to tie down over night, I went by A.Spruce hangar and bought a tube and helped Dave Staffeldt install it. We checked out a whole box of tools from the maintenance shop. Dave wouldn't take anything for what I'm sure was more than an hour and there was no charge for the other services. I was more than delighted to put $40 in their tool kitty jar. I think the Michelin Air Stop tube was $80. so it cost me $120. I was still smiling when the Caravan powers to be decreed my handle would be "Breakdown". BICBW
  2. 3 points
    Well, I just finished up my 5th annual since owning my J. I decided to use a new shop since my other annuals were always done in a day and I felt they were not as thorough as they should or coupld be. After some searching and upon the advice of a couple Mooneyspacers I went with Crownair Aviation in San Diego Montgomery Field (KMYF). I scheduled to drop off my plane on Oct 24th but that got delayed just days prior due to an ongoing problem with my dual mag. After getting that repaired I was able to drop it off on Oct 31st. Crownair was very accommodating and agreed to do the annual even though I missed my drop off window by a week. This led to the annual taking over a month and I finally picked it up on Dec 2nd with a Dec 1st sign off (This was something the shop and I agreed to since the plane wasn't going to be ready until Nov 28th anyways). I want to add that I feel like my plane is in very good condition, not perfect, but I am proactive about maintenance and fix issues as they come up. Within the last year I have IRAN'd the mags, OH'd the prop, repaired a faulty dual mag, repaired a cracked upper cowl, replaced the ignition switch and p-leads, among other minor issues. Point being I don't let things stay broke very long so I felt like the plane was in decent shape going into the annual. The basic inspection was quoted around $2,100. This is double what I usually spend in labor alone in my previous annuals (Not including parts). I was thinking the annual would end up being maybe $3,000 but surely no more than $4,000. I was even prepared to stomach $5k if it came to that. After they did the initial inspection was completed they emailed me a list of 65 tasks, which included the discrepancies. Not all of the discrepancies were mandatory or airworthy. Some were "tires worn out." I felt my tires were still fine and probably could have gone at 6-12 more months before needing replacement but I decided to "throw them a bone" so to speak, and let them replace the mains. And since they were replacing the mains I told them to go ahead and replace the nose tire too. Other issues were discussed and I was given approximate costs, over the phone, on how much other discrepancies would cost to be addressed. I gave approval on certain ones such as replacing the cotter pins in the seat rails with the correct size. I finally got the invoice emailed to me yesterday which came out to a whopping $6,006. I was a little shocked to say the least. Most of the costs were reasonable such as an hour to change each tire but some seemed a bit skewed. Such as .5 hours @ $88 hour to change those 4 said seat rail cotter pins. I've done this before and I can say this takes about 2 minutes to change all 4 cotter pins. I was charged 1.5 hours to change the oil. Something I can personally do in about 30 minutes with the cowl removed and change filters and I'm not a professional A&P by any stretch of the word. Personally I feel the hardest part of changing the oil is removing the cowlings by myself but they come off as part of the inspection so the actual oil and filter change should be easy and quick. I also got charged .25 hours (15 minutes) to take an oil sample. Again, something that takes a couple minutes. Another issue I saw was being charged 1 hour of labor to secure the landing light wiring and fire sleeve from chafing on the exhaust. I brought these billing issues up during the pick up. I was told the smallest increment of time they can bill for is 15 minutes. I was also explained why it could take 30 minutes to change the cotter pins because the mechanic "has to go get the cotter pins, put them in and log it." The logbook entry referencing that task was about 6 words. Now I'm not writing this only to complain as they did address and repair some other issues I was not aware of and I'm glad they did that. The costs on some of those seemed reasonable but the costs on tires seemed excessive. I was billed $160 for a nose wheel that costs $99.50 at Spruce. The mains were also more than Spruce. Had I known this before I would have declined the tires and had my local field mechanic do the work at $70 hr and bought the tires myself. Pros about this shop: Very friendly, professional and complete service Cons: Not providing better estimates on costs to fix discrepancies but this could also partially be my fault. All this being said I wish I had a better idea and more information before choosing this shop which is why I'm writing this. I'm happy with the work they did just not so happy with the billing. Before choosing the shop I asked them what the average annual costs on a J like mine. He would not answer or even give me a ballpark. I wasn't trying to nail him down to a number I just wanted to know what the average Joe Shmoe pays for an average annual on a plane like mine. I even told him I wouldn't expect that to be what mine could cost because I'm aware of the variables. Still wouldn't give me an answer. That should have been a sign right there. Anyways, I hope this helps someone in the future. Any questions feel free to ask. Steve
  3. 3 points
    Late entry for 2016 I just found looking through a folder. From back in February. Appropriate as getting ready for the winter here in New England. Love the climb performance in the cool crisp winter air. This was an early morning breakfast run to Nancy's Airfield Cafe at Minute Man Air Field (6B6) with my youngest, Will (10). Great food there and, yes, he finished both plates. (To clarify, the flying pics are departure and landing from home airport (KBVY - Beverly, MA).
  4. 2 points
    I hope you're kidding, sometimes I have a hard time reading between the lines.
  5. 2 points
    I have had worse. I took my first J to LASAR for its first Annual. "They are the best." That may be true- but they arnt the most reasonable. Double digits... well into double digits. Similar experience. Great people-know their mooneys... but they charge a HEFTY premium for that knowledge and reputation.
  6. 2 points
    I've given three interested pilots, rides in my Mooney. All three of them now are Mooney owners. Not a bad average
  7. 2 points
    My buddy flies a Citation Sovereign for a living. It is based in Tampa but was at the Cessna Service Center at Orlando International and was ready to be picked up. My Mooney was ready to be picked up from the avionics shop at Orlando-Sanford 21 nm north. So we drove a rental to KSFB to pick up my bird then I dropped him off at KMCO. Here is a picture of 88V in front of the Cessna Service Center and a ramp full of Citation Jets. Interior pics of the Sovereign. Golfing legend and fellow aviator gone west, Arnold Palmers Citation.
  8. 2 points
    Also, thank you for helping out all of my endless questions over at pilotsofamerica.com I hope I can return the favor someday!
  9. 2 points
    There are plenty of quality/solid airframes around that have not been updated much, if at all. So long as you go into such a plane knowing that putting $50k into a $60k plane typically results in an $80k plane when it is time to sell, then you won't be disappointed. However, if you wish to build your dream plane (like Bennett) and own/fly it for a long time, then you'll "get" your money out if it in enjoyment over many years. Starting with an un-upgraded plane in this case is great because paying for newer paint or interior that you want to change is silly. Ditto for one with a 430W if you ultimately want a GTN instead. Just figure out what you ultimately want, and how long you might own it. Personally I think the J (and perhaps K) fit a real sweet spot in terms of useful speed and range, low operating cost, and reasonable purchase price. To go measurably faster or carry a lot more at similar speeds requires s LOT more in purchase and/or operating cost. Point bring you might not "outgrow" a Mooney and thus building a great one might be a great long-term decision. Sent from my VS985 4G using Tapatalk
  10. 2 points
    I bought a 78J in 2014, I bought it for less than 70K BUT... its avionics and interior were dated, it desperately needed an upgrade. Which I did within a year. Its engine had 1600 hrs, I'm currently at 1950 and God willing I plan on going well past TBO. The first annual and first year maintenance cost was 10K which included new landing pucks, muffler, overhauled gear actuator, all new hoses, new spark plugs, overhauled mags, and new LED lights. Only the muffler and hoses was unexpected. ...so would have it been better to pay more upfront? No Js for sale had modern avionics (GTN xxx, JPI 8xx, etc), so I got the what I wanted, how I wanted it. No Js had LED lights... Owners are reluctant to spend money on maintenance when they aren't flying or selling, so most will need some major investment in the first year. Logs will tell you the story. The more hours I put on the engine, the better deal I got. PPIs help, but there are no guarantees. Rule of thumb is you need 10% cash in reserve for 1st year maintenance....I would use 15% if plane is less than 100K.
  11. 2 points
    True to Mooney Speed, this little guy arrived a few weeks early on my birthday. He is doing well.
  12. 2 points
    We don't have a "don't like" button, but that's pretty lame. A guy wants to fly an airplane and be safe as he can and you call him what? Screw this macho crap.
  13. 2 points
    +1, and also: -you like working on it -you have friends at your airport and like helping them work on their airplanes -you have a fridge at your hangar and you like just relaxing on a nice evening with a beer There are a lot of things to enjoy about being an airplane owner, but financially justifying the expense isn't one of them. (24 year airplane owner)
  14. 2 points
    As one that has owned 14 airplanes in my flying career and had a $25k annual on an airplane that had an extensive ($10k) pre-buy by the guru of that aircraft type and had the annual done by the same individual - listen to Andy. I see a lot of fantasy and justification by the OP that will be quite eye opening once the reality and expense of aircraft ownership sets in. Ownership is more expensive than renting in 99% of cases and the OP is not the 1% exception. You own for pride of ownership, immediate and absolute availability of the airplane, known maintenance and condition or to fly an airplane that isn't readily available on the rental line. YOU DO NOT OWN AN AIRPLANE TO SAVE MONEY OVER RENTING !!!
  15. 2 points
    In the Mooney, there would have been plenty of time to leisurely fly a normal pattern as you would have easily outrun the storm at a normal cruise speed
  16. 1 point
    So, long time Mooneyspacer but first time posting, here goes… I only came to flying about 6 years ago but confess I have become bitten with the bug.… I consider my self fortunate to fly regularly (about 250 hours a year) and just passed my latest IPC. However, I recognize that I sometimes suffer from a lack of confidence mostly in bumpy or harder IMC where, despite keeping on top of hand flying skills, I know that I worry about the “what if I had an emergency right now” scenarios too much. Honestly, some of the stories I read here and on other GA sites of folks flying to IFR approach minimums in single pilot, single engine piston planes in hard IMC conditions simply highlight flying situations that (I think) are always going to be beyond my personal minimums. Still, I fly an amazingly capable aircraft and want use as much of its potential as I feel comfortable with so I started thinking about / talking to other pilots and especially my CFI gurus (thanks Chris, Dave and Ed!) about how I might improve my real world flying skills and in so doing try to increase my IMC proficiency / confidence another few steps at the same time. I mulled over taking the CPL course at first and then maybe doing the multi engine IFR thing as well. But I don't have a real need for either of those ratings and work / the rest of life calls too so the time commitments would have been challenge (not to mention the cost). Anyway, this post is to share my decision to take Upset Prevention & Recovery Training. Next week will see me in Texas with the folks at APS based at KGKY where I will be doing a course that includes a section specificity on IMC upset recovery techniques. The cherry on the top of this whole deal (other than flying away from the start of our Canadian winter for a few days) is getting to experience first hand what an Extra 300L can do as well! The more I read and learn about UPRT the more I’m thinking I made the right call…we shall see. Best of the season to all. Cheers.
  17. 1 point
    So Oct 1 this year I bought a '77 J with 1915 total hours on the air frame. 530 on an overhauled engine. But just as TeeJay says, it has out dated electronics, interior is original so is the paint. Just went through first Annual for less than 2K. I bought it for less than 60K. I think if you look around there are J's in the 50K to 60K for a starter plane.
  18. 1 point
    I'm never giving up my turbo BMW but the high-speed trains in Europe really are cool and compared to driving in the states I think even better
  19. 1 point
    It will be nice to tell stec to go pound sand with their prices.
  20. 1 point
    Two reasons. 1) Landing gear doesn't pass certification at higher weights. It's a weak link. Hard landing overweight you can do damage or worse. 2) wing design is supposedly maxed out. At high weights, the wing exceeds the stall speed certification requirements for a single. But yes I love that I still can climb at 1000fpm at max gross in the R Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  21. 1 point
    Hello FL Pilot and welcome to MS. A typical mission for my "F" model is Ocala FL to Dayton OH. Somewhere around 660 NM. Full fuel and 500 lbs straight through 4.5 hours. Leaves me around 17 gallons in the tanks. Where are you based in FL?
  22. 1 point
    I don't know how much my Ovation can carry. Legally, it may carry 952 pounds of "stuff" such as pilots, passengers, fuel, baggage, TKS fluid and etc.. It will depart below legal gross, fly two people and bags for 5 hours at 170 knots and arrive with an hour of reserve.
  23. 1 point
    As noted previously, there are some negatives, but it seems "priced right" as presented. However, corrosion in the airframe or camshaft would make it way over-priced. The non-W 430 is still a very capable box. The KX 170B is a dinosaur, but they are generally good strong radios...if it works, it probably works well. The transponder will have to be up-graded to comply with ADS-B.
  24. 1 point
    The bottom of my plane gets cleaned once a year at annual whether it needs it or not! In between annual?? Fahgedaboutit!! Just the way I am. There are better things in life than scrubbing that crap off!
  25. 1 point
    I have had my 231 for 16 years and never been above 18,000. I do not have the ES transponder. If I should decide to sell my plane, it would cost the new owner about the same amount it would cost me now, to switch transponders. So I opted not to do it now.

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