Annual Expense of Flying an ELSA (Good News & Bad News)

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by FastEddieB, Jan 1, 2018.

  1. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Final Approach

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    I just took a few moments to go over my 2017 expenses related to my ELSA Sky Arrow.

    Good news: Total for the year was about $5,500.

    More good news: It only cost me about $35/hour to fly the plane, excluding fixed costs.

    Bad news: factor in those fixed costs, and it works out to just over $200/hr.(!)

    The whole story:

    [​IMG]

    Some notes and observations:

    1) I think this was the fewest hours I've ever flown in a year. Over 10 years I've accrued 500 hours in the Sky Arrow, so you do the math. No real reason for the low hours this year, just other priorities getting in the way and no long trips at all this year - we generally do at least one.

    2) I assigned no value to my time - several days spent on the Annual Condition Inspection plus other minor maintenance over the year.

    3) I did not factor in "Opportunity Cost". Sure, $75k could have been invested and earned a return, but those funds were always flagged for fun, not investment.

    4) I also did not factor in depreciation. Hard to know exactly what my plane is worth, but it may not be much less than I paid for it, with new ones going for about double that now.

    5) Nothing in there for overhaul reserve. Plus every fifth year there's added expense for rubber parts replacement for the ROTAX.

    6) Our hangar serves double duty as a storage unit. If we did not have it for the plane, we would certainly need to rent a storage facility, so there would be some expense regardless.


    So, lots of other things that could have been factored in and weren't. Still, being an airplane owner for about what some people make in car payments makes it worthwhile. For me, anyway.

    Hope someone finds the above useful.
     
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  2. Hank S

    Hank S En-Route

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    This is why I think Fixed Expenses shouldn't be lumped into Operating Expenses. If you flew twice as many hours, it would work out to $118/hour. If your hours were cut by half, it would be $368/hour.

    The way I see it, it cost you $4500 to own, and $35/hour to fly. If your hours doubled or halved, the $4500 stays unchanged and the hourly cost would vary only by fuel prices and required maintenance and would not vary by a factor of more than three times.

    But congratulations for accurately keeping up with your expenses, for keeping them so very reasonable, and especially for being brave enough to post them here!
     
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  3. Cluemeister

    Cluemeister Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I calculated mine and then burned the evidence.
     
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  4. Dana

    Dana Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Having YOUR plane available any time YOU want it... priceless.
     
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  5. Ravioli

    Ravioli En-Route

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    Another hangar cost I envy.
     
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  6. timwinters

    timwinters Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    LTD--Little Timmy D*ckhead
    Hell, Eddie, your hangar was over $100/hr...that's what sucks about flying so few hours.

    But, $250/mo for a hangar for a LS? glad I don't live in your neck-of-the-woods!

    You're jealous???? Damn, guys!! I pay $125/mo for a spot in a community heated hangar at PCD. Over at H88 I paid $125/mo for a brand new T with a power bi-fold. Up at Moberly, Mo I paid $150 for a brand new T...and I thought I was getting robbed! ;)
     
  7. GRG55

    GRG55 En-Route

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    Ferget the hangar. Look at that fuel bill. I'll bet I burned through more than that just taxiiing last year. :eek:
     
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  8. Ravioli

    Ravioli En-Route

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    Yup. I pay significantly more for my hangar. candyland.jpg
     
  9. N659HB

    N659HB Pattern Altitude

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    That's no hangar. That's a cavern!
     
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  10. rtk11

    rtk11 Line Up and Wait

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    My hangarage in The OC is a minimum of $438 a month for a T Hangar, and more likely $600 a month for a box Hangar. In Florida, I’m paying $250/mo for a shared hangar space. (Temporary hangar for now.). I would jump at the chance for a $250 a month hangar!

    In fact, I would jump at the chance to have your insurance cost also! I pay about 2.5 times what the OP is paying!
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2018
  11. Hank S

    Hank S En-Route

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    My community hangar osts a little less, and unlike @rtk11 , insurance cost is the same as Eddie.
     
  12. NealRomeoGolf

    NealRomeoGolf Line Up and Wait

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    Small(er) town Midwest hangar rates are pretty sweet. Just over $150/mo for my t-hangar and that includes utilities. I hope my company never makes me move to Chicago. That would hurt.
     
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  13. Lachlan

    Lachlan Pattern Altitude

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    Actually, there are lots of different exact prices for that, it just depends on the airplane you buy. C152 price: $20,000. Falcon jet: $millions. Super Cub? $100,000. ;)
     
  14. AWACSEng

    AWACSEng Cleared for Takeoff

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    Hey! Didn't you read the other thread where it was determined that if you track/calculate your expenses, you can't afford to own? Guess it's time to get that financial elephant off your back. I'll take one for the team and offer the first bid. $1.
     
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  15. zaitcev

    zaitcev En-Route

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    He didn't include the cost of building the polebarn, see the "Karen and Eddie fine adventure" thread. Still, $3k/y is cheap. I am paying $6,600/y in hangar costs. Granted, I have 2 airplanes, but they could've easily fit into a square hangar if I owned one.
     
  16. Shepherd

    Shepherd En-Route

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    Please do me a favor:
    When you die, please have someone record your last words.
    I want to know if "Gee, I wish I had spent that $75,000.00 more responsibly." ever get said.
     
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  17. NealRomeoGolf

    NealRomeoGolf Line Up and Wait

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    Exactly why my last words to my wife were “screw it, I’m buying a plane.”

    Ok I kid, we’re still married. But I have a plane.
     
  18. GRG55

    GRG55 En-Route

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    Guy across the hall from me has a sign over his desk: "I've spent half of everything I ever earned on aviation. The rest I just wasted."
     
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