Airplane Price gaps

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by FelipeNJ32, May 25, 2021.

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  1. FelipeNJ32

    FelipeNJ32 Filing Flight Plan

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    I often see for example Cessna 172 same year (e.g. 1976) priced at $30K, $80, $200K or $400K. This makes little sense to me, b\c I see all planes have 6 pack avionics and similar interior. I am a pilot in-training so perhaps there is something I don't understand. These situations everything seems the same but hours are much lower. Is low hours that important ? If you were purchasing a plane would you choose the plane that was cheapest, double, or triple the cost of cheapest knowing only difference was lower hours ?

    Here is a random example of what I see every so often these past few weeks:

    https://www.trade-a-plane.com/searc...2N+SKYHAWK&listing_id=2394277&s-type=aircraft

    https://www.trade-a-plane.com/searc...2M+SKYHAWK&listing_id=2394170&s-type=aircraft
     
  2. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

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    the pricier one has mid time engine, less total hours and better avionics than the other one with 18K hours on the airframe, some 3300 hours on the engine and old GPS/nav/com. i am not sure if the first one is worth 143K but definitely makes me feels better considering the amount of money i put in shinny new things in my piper
     
  3. FelipeNJ32

    FelipeNJ32 Filing Flight Plan

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    I hear you saying it has less engine time and total hours, and slightly better avionics. The old NAV aka VOR and COM aka Radios will work the same in both planes. I don't see difference other than lower hours. Is low hours that important ? Or am I misunderstanding the value of the avionics? or NAV/COM differences and value?
     
  4. MBDiagMan

    MBDiagMan En-Route

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    The difference is time, condition, center stack and steam guages vs glass.
     
  5. OneCharlieTango

    OneCharlieTango Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Not long ago, the first one would’ve listed in the 60’s and the second one in the teens. Strange times we live in.
     
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  6. mondtster

    mondtster En-Route

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    Assuming everything works, the capability of the avionics is largely the same. I don't see ADS-B out mentioned on the 172N, which would be a detractor if you ask me. Especially at the asking price. The newer avionics have some additional value for reasons that may not be immediately obvious, that being the ability to interface with other equipment that you may wish to install at a later time and factory support for a longer period of time. The GNS430 has been around for a long time now and is getting to the end of its road.

    Another thing that isn't mentioned but I'd be investigating what engine is in the 172N. If it has the H2AD it is potentially more burdensome to own/maintain than the more traditional Lycomings. I wouldn't consider it a deal breaker but it will affect valuation.

    High time and low time airframes both have their own unique problems. High time can often equate to "used up" the same way high mileage often equates to "used up" with cars.
     
  7. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

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    Other factors to consider. The 18k hrs plane was probably a trainer at some point , this abused. Also the engine probably needs a OH tomorrow. I don’t know how many pilots will buy that 3300 hrs SMOH and run it until it quits.
     
  8. Marshall Alexander

    Marshall Alexander Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I wouldn't want the first one because it's in Florida.........corrosion?
     
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  9. Clip4

    Clip4 Final Approach

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    Some of the upper end is the wife told me to sell it price.
     
  10. Ed Haywood

    Ed Haywood Line Up and Wait

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    18K is the most hours I have ever personally seen listed on an aircraft ad. Used to be back in the day, there was a general belief that a GA airframe had a maximum service life of somewhere around 10K hours, due to the nature of aluminum having a finite number of flex cycles before cracking. That was back in the day, and maybe the thinking has changed. But 18 thousand hours. Damn. I'd be a little nervous every time I flew that one.
     
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  11. bflynn

    bflynn Final Approach

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    Also age. The 172 can range from 1956 up to today. A new 172 is 500k+. Obviously a 2021 model will be much more than a 1956 one.
     
  12. bflynn

    bflynn Final Approach

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    I can attest that 10k is nothing. I have flown a PA28 that had 16k hours. If someone had not run it off a narrow runway, it would be well over 20 by now.