For my next plane - Refurb a Certificated or go Exp?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by WannFly, Feb 22, 2021.

  1. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Messages:
    6,201
    Location:
    KFAR
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Priyo
    purely a theoretical debate as of now, but every now and then i think about my next and last plane, i am sure we all do.

    So lets say after another 7 years, I want to gift myself my next and last plane. Based on my current mission (which might very well change), a RV-10 would fit the bill, no doubt. But after peeling the onions in my head I have realized that building something from scratch is just not going to happen, if I do go the Exp route, it would have to be either a pre-built one or get to something like a builder assisted program. i also have not much interest doing the annual, I will most likely hire a APIA to do that as well. Figure they know more than me. As on today, with a builder assisted program and the avionics I like, its about a 300k price tag.

    now lets say, I get in a refurb thing. There are companies out there that do for Dakota, Toga and there may be others. Toga might be close to the speed of a -10. Prices comes close to 300-350 but basically you pretty much get a factory new plane minus the hours on the airframe. They usually try to find a low time airframe, gut it out, zero time engine, new prop and build everything from there.

    MX cost wise - the only benefit i see going Exp in my case is, parts are cheap(er) in the Exp world. Annual and rest will probably be the same.

    What does POA BrainTrust say?
     
  2. SoonerAviator

    SoonerAviator Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2014
    Messages:
    6,287
    Location:
    Broken Arrow, OK
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    SoonerAviator
    I would guess that if you built an RV-10 or similar experimental, the price you paid to buy/build it would stay fairly close to what you could sell it for. If you go refurb certified, you'll never get close to the amount you bought it for, because in the end it's still an airframe with a few thousand hours on it before you did the refurb. Sure, it might command a premium for being "essentially new" but you'll still eat a large chunk of that refurb expense. Guess it just depends on how much value you (or your surviving family) will be able to get out of it when your flying days are over.
     
    WannFly likes this.
  3. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Messages:
    5,105
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    hindsight2020
    EAB.
     
    IK04, TCABM and WannFly like this.
  4. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Messages:
    6,201
    Location:
    KFAR
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Priyo
  5. genna

    genna Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Messages:
    1,532
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    ТУ-104
    @SoonerAviator is probably right, but you will still lose a chunk of money if you go builder route. Even with a very desirable RV10. But i think the main advantage for RV10 would be maintenance(to some degree) and future upgrade paths(many more choices, no STC, etc.). OTOH, a Piper would be much more familiar to most mechanics.

    I'd choose EAB. Certainly RV10. I don't think i would want to build one from scratch(too greenhorn and don't really trust myself), but I would love to do a builder assist if i could afford it.
     
    TCABM and WannFly like this.
  6. NordicDave

    NordicDave Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2015
    Messages:
    2,148
    Location:
    San Jose
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    NordicDave
    Everyone likes the revised cost structure of E/AB.

    More than half kits sold are not completed or will never be completed.Though these numbers are challenged between 30%-50% as not completed.

    Many pilots are not capable of building the kits due to either time and/or skill. Van's kits are awesome, however they are pretty basic as to make them easier to build. Interiors are austere and devoid of many useful simple features of part 23 planes. Example: The RV's kit's I'm familiar with can only adjust seats fore/aft while on the ground. This might not matter to you, but helpful for me adjusting position on long flights.

    Experimental is great, Van's is great; not for everyone and possibly not for most.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2021
    WannFly likes this.
  7. Salty

    Salty Final Approach

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    7,743
    Location:
    FL
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Salty
    We are in much the same place in our aviation adventure, and as you know I started building an RV-10 in December. I thought long and hard about the options and the only thing that made any sense was experimental. So you know my opinion on the matter.
     
    WannFly likes this.
  8. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2007
    Messages:
    10,703
    Location:
    Maryland
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Check_my_Six
    Depends.....both will cost about the same, believe it or not. How much skin do you want to put into this? How handy are you?

    I'd buy a finished RV-10 and be done with it. It's much faster than a Toga...but won't haul as much.
     
    WannFly likes this.
  9. Stewartb

    Stewartb Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    Messages:
    6,842
    Location:
    Wasilla, AK
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    stewartb
    The generalization that E-AB kit planes are less expensive than a similar legacy airplane is usually incorrect.
     
    FancyG, TCABM, WannFly and 1 other person like this.
  10. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Messages:
    6,201
    Location:
    KFAR
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Priyo
    not much, hence no longer looking to build from scratch and i dont have the patience anyway. buying something from a reputed builder is definitely an option, but making it my own would cost a substantial amount, hence the option of builder assist (which aint cheap either). thats probably the calculation i need to do.

    dont need much to haul 80% of the time.
     
  11. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man En-Route

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2014
    Messages:
    3,329
    Location:
    Statesville NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Grum.Man
    If you don't plan to take advantage of doing your own maintenance, annuals, and upgrades and have 300k to spend I would probably stick to certified airplanes. 300k would by a pretty fresh Cirrus, 182, etc.. Experimental airplanes have their place when you need an airplane that has certain performance you can't get from other Certified options. For example, the 2 seat RV's fly faster, land slower, and have more room than pretty much any other certified 2 seat option. If you are talking 4 seaters then the gap narrows. An RV10 and SR22 aren't that far apart performance wise and with depreciation the SR22 quickly comes down in price.
     
    WannFly and TCABM like this.
  12. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2007
    Messages:
    10,703
    Location:
    Maryland
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Check_my_Six
    Then buy something with good bones (mid time engine and nice panel)....and have somethings done to it, maybe paint and interior (~$50K)? A total refurb is going to be very costly and likely money down a rabbit hole.
     
    WannFly likes this.
  13. Sinistar

    Sinistar En-Route

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2016
    Messages:
    3,237
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Brad
    @WannFly - this was a recent discussion the other day when we met up. Maybe for the fine poa'ers can you confirm a few things:

    1. I think you like the RV for 2 major reasons - speed increase from the Archer AND More avionics for your money - did I understand that right?
    2. I sensed that you really want to be able to fill 3 seats, some baggage and mostly full fuel to have 500nm flights right around 3hrs (not counting headwinds).
    3. You seem okay with higher fuel burn if it gets you there faster enough to warrant the higher fuel burn.

    ....to me that rules out the Dakota's and fixed gear piper haulers. Same for the 182/180/20x. Just not a big enough of speed boost to warrant the upgrade and $/mile. Although they will all address the load hauling and larger fuel tanks for more W&B options.

    So isn't there a relatively short GA list of SEL planes: 182RG...just barely, 210, Bo, SR22, Columbia 400/TTx, and whatever pipers are fast enough with gear up (Saratoga,Lance?). Then add in your Rv10. The SR22 and TTx are probably out of the price range. But I would think $200K would buy a hell of a nice Bo, 210, piper ??? and even the 182RG might be enough.

    If your range was $250K total that leaves a $50K for some avionics that were missed and a ugly first annual. Since you prefer to not do your own annuals it may as well be certificated from that POV. Maybe the RV10 is the winner because it will not be 50yrs old and looming nasty AD's. Also curious how many from that list can burn auto-gas if 100LL were to go away.
     
    WannFly likes this.
  14. Huckster79

    Huckster79 Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2018
    Messages:
    1,579
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Huckster79
    Check out a bear hawk! $150k or so with brand new lychoming... quick build kit cuts down build time a lot and I hear makes em more valuable afterwards...

    Im planning on doing one in a few years- the darn thing seems to be everything and quite economical for a plane. Rough n rugged and slow landing for off field and pretty darned fast plus lots of load and large doors
     
    WannFly likes this.
  15. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Messages:
    6,201
    Location:
    KFAR
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Priyo
    @Huckster79 - probably wont cut it for my mission

    @Sinistar - yeah its related what we were discussing.

    the most recent upcoming change in my mission is actually filling up 3 seats and making a 500 nm non-stop flight preferably in 3 hrs. I cant do that in archer without a stop and definitely not in 3 hrs. however, I am not ready to spend 300k right now to meet that mission profile, so commercial it is or when i have time take the archer and make it a journey instead of making it to the destination as fast as i can.

    1. I think you like the RV for 2 major reasons - speed increase from the Archer AND More avionics for your money - did I understand that right? -

    yes, precisely. going from my 120 kts to 140 kts doesnt warrant a change, its a major hassle and for not much worth to me. so when i change, min 165 kts is what i am looking for. I under the -10 can make that quite economically.

    2. I sensed that you really want to be able to fill 3 seats, some baggage and mostly full fuel to have 500nm flights right around 3hrs (not counting headwinds).

    Yes. see my comment above, but 7 years down the road that would not be my mission profile, may be something close. I would like to fly high if need be in low teens.

    3. You seem okay with higher fuel burn if it gets you there faster enough to warrant the higher fuel burn.'

    yes. I havent been thinking about RG and would like to keep it simple with fixed gear. that puts me in SR-22/20 , RV-10. Even looked at Sling 4 TSi, I like it, but not sure if it fits all the check boxes. for one, its fairly light and none of my pax likes to bump around in the air. not talking about moderate turn, talking about mechanical light chops under 4k.

    from a budget perspective, 300k is what i am thinking in today's $$. I am fairly certain 7 years from now a decked out RV is not going to happen in 300K. I looked at a build sheet of a local builder, he built that -10 from scratch, his 3rd build, a couple of years back it was right at 260K. it was as decked out as it gets with FADEC and all!!

    another great point that i didnt think about is, even if i get a 3000 hr old certificated one, it would still be some 40 year old airframe and associated AD etc. looks like a -10 or a SR-22 is a clear winner, thought i am not sure if one can get a SR-22 in that price range
     
  16. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Messages:
    6,201
    Location:
    KFAR
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Priyo
    Yeah i am finding that out first hand. not a total refurb, but i am upgrading my archer on a piece meal basis. next is interior and a paint job. I am fully aware i wont get much back from what i am going to put in. by the time I will be done with my planned upgrade and getting close to the next one, pretty sure an engine OH is in order.

    I did buy a mid time engine and a nice panel, but being a sucker for shinny things, the panel wasnt good enough lol
     
    Checkout_my_Six likes this.
  17. Stewartb

    Stewartb Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    Messages:
    6,842
    Location:
    Wasilla, AK
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    stewartb
    The reality of aircraft build budgeting? Establish what the kit manufacturer advertises, then double the money and triple the time.
     
    WannFly likes this.
  18. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Messages:
    6,201
    Location:
    KFAR
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Priyo
    One more thing, might make multiple flights over open waters (read bahamas / key west etc) and a chute would definitely help. these days you can put chute on multiple airframes including the 10. while another engine is an option, but now we are doubling the MX, may be tripling. The lady didnt explicitly say this, but I have a feeling she likes the idea of a chute than no chute over large bodies of water or night flight
     
    TCABM likes this.
  19. Sinistar

    Sinistar En-Route

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2016
    Messages:
    3,237
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Brad
    Sounds more like you need a 1/2 or 1/3 or 1/4 partnership in a SR22. That checks every box (distance, speed, W&B, low wing, cool factor, fancy avionics, 3 passengers + bags, chute, etc). Plus you get to split that crazy Atlanta area hangar fee N ways. I know its not your favorite choice due to potential dispatch conflicts but if you could get beyond that, it gets you everything. Or maybe there is a 1/2 partnership in an already built RV-10?
     
    FancyG and TCABM like this.
  20. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Messages:
    6,201
    Location:
    KFAR
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Priyo
    Yeh thought about that too, but... you know... people generally dont like me and i have same feeling about them :D
     
  21. Tarheelpilot

    Tarheelpilot En-Route

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2010
    Messages:
    4,829
    Location:
    North Carolina once again.
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Tarheelpilot
    My dream last airplane is an RV-8 setup for day/night VFR with an experimental lycoming 390 under the bonnet and a light weight/simple build.

    sliding canopy and conventional gear.
     
    farangutan, GRG55 and WannFly like this.
  22. Bell206

    Bell206 En-Route

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2017
    Messages:
    4,066
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Bell206
    Or you can refurb your existing aircraft in stages and come out with something very close to a store bought aircraft. Have helped several owners perform basically a ground up refurb over a period of years. Now they were involved at the high end which kept their costs down and one even got his A&P out of the project. And since they flew mainly in the spring/summer/fall we allocated the winter months to work on it. Just something else to think about.;)
     
    WannFly likes this.
  23. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Messages:
    6,201
    Location:
    KFAR
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Priyo
    I am already on that journey with the Archer. but my future mission would need something faster...

    panel is almost done, some cosmetic stuff is pending and really would like to get rid of those factory gauges, so may be a EIS is in order, but not the top priority. the EDM 830 gives me everything I need. Paint and interior was already planned for 2021, but that will move to 2022. will probably add the EIS and a new panel cut out at same time. and when the time comes the engine. doesnt matter what i do, she aint getting any faster :p
     
  24. Daleandee

    Daleandee Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2020
    Messages:
    1,101
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Dale Andee
    Might find something here:

     
    WannFly likes this.
  25. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2014
    Messages:
    13,584
    Location:
    high desert NM
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Billy
    My thoughts. Not trying to convince anyone of anything. But since I was asked....

    Experimental is a fancy word folks like to use in place of amateur.

    As I have said before, I have been in some amateur built race cars that I really wish I had stayed out of. And those were supposed to stay on the ground. I can't imagine getting into something built by who knows and then get in the air with it. My personal choice (now that I am older and supposedly wiser) is to stay out of anything amateur built.

    I know some home builts are built by some pretty dependable folks, but it's not worth my life.
     
    Rcmutz, 3393RP and WannFly like this.
  26. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2008
    Messages:
    14,690
    Location:
    mass fla
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    ron keating
    Not having the skills or time to build ,I prefer to refurb. Get the plane the way you want it then sell.
     
    WannFly likes this.
  27. kyleb

    kyleb Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2008
    Messages:
    5,908
    Location:
    Marietta, GA
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Drake the Outlaw
    You did see the thread on the corroded away Cherokee?
     
  28. kyleb

    kyleb Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2008
    Messages:
    5,908
    Location:
    Marietta, GA
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Drake the Outlaw
    We have a member in this forum who is in an SR-22 club/partnership in the Atlanta area. We have another member who's about to finish an RV-10 and *might* consider a partner.
     
    WannFly likes this.
  29. MooneyDriver78

    MooneyDriver78 En-Route

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2013
    Messages:
    3,353
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Tom
    Why sell? You get the plane the way you want it and fly the plane and enjoy it.
     
    Checkout_my_Six likes this.
  30. Dana

    Dana Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2016
    Messages:
    1,987
    Location:
    CT & NY
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Dana
    For most E-AB kit planes, there are no similar legacy planes.

    Your choice. The record shows that once past the initial test period (or past a new owner's first few hours in a used experimental), the safety record is similar. My take is that a used experimental with a few hundred hours on it is just as safe as a factory built airplane, provide it's maintained properly (I know mine is maintained properly, because I do it myself).

    upload_2021-2-22_20-15-44.png
     
  31. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2014
    Messages:
    13,584
    Location:
    high desert NM
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Billy
    Like I said, not trying or even wanting to try to change anyone's mind. Some folks get into those home built race cars with roll cages built with black iron pipe and stick welded together.

    All builders are not equal in talents. I learned that lesson the hard way. Thank God for Simpson protective wear.
     
  32. GRG55

    GRG55 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2015
    Messages:
    9,206
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Aztec Flyer
    That one wasn't built by amateurs; just maintained by amateurs.
     
  33. kyleb

    kyleb Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2008
    Messages:
    5,908
    Location:
    Marietta, GA
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Drake the Outlaw
    The point was, Factory built or Garage built, you can find yourself in deep kimchee.
     
    Zeldman likes this.
  34. Stewartb

    Stewartb Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2014
    Messages:
    6,842
    Location:
    Wasilla, AK
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    stewartb
    My exp Cub is an improvement over a Piper Cub in every way. Strength, performance, utility... and it’s brand new. A friend sold his 185 and built a Murphy Moose because flying a 45 year old plane wasn’t as good as flying a brand new one. These new kit planes are the real deal.
     
    FancyG, farangutan and aterry1067 like this.
  35. aterry1067

    aterry1067 Pre-Flight

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2020
    Messages:
    95
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Alpha_Delta_Tango


    And many of the kit makers have engineered out mistakes that builders can make. Although you "can" buy just the plans, most kits are pre-cut, pre-drilled, and partially assembled airplanes that require very little, if any, actual fabrication and only require assembly of the parts. It's not much more difficult than an erector set. It would be the same if Cessna would sell you all the parts and build manual for a 172 and let you put it together under E/AB rules. I wish they would; they would probably sell more of those than certificated/assembled aircraft. If they would sell me the plans and parts to a new 177 I'd be all over that.
     
    FancyG likes this.
  36. Daleandee

    Daleandee Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2020
    Messages:
    1,101
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Dale Andee
    Indeed many of the kits are now totally pre-punched but up-drilling & deburring still need to be done. On mine we had the factory assembled wing spars. Not that the builder's can't assemble them but just makes me feel better to know that the spar assemblies were done by the manufacturer.
     
    AKBill and aterry1067 like this.
  37. WannFly

    WannFly Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Messages:
    6,201
    Location:
    KFAR
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Priyo
    I hear the new vans kit they made it even simpler and cuts down a lot of time since those holes doesn’t need to be up-drilled anymore
     
  38. Daleandee

    Daleandee Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2020
    Messages:
    1,101
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Dale Andee
    I've heard that but depending on how the holes are put in the aluminum it still may require deburring ... but that's quick work.

    I'd love to build myself an RV-9 but the funds and the place to build one haven't arrived yet. :)
     
  39. kyleb

    kyleb Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2008
    Messages:
    5,908
    Location:
    Marietta, GA
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Drake the Outlaw
    Some of the newer kits do have the holes punched to size. But you're still gonna need to deburr and dimple them for the most part. That said, the amount of time you spend deburring, dimpling, and actually riveting things is trivial in the overall scheme of building an airplane.
     
    aterry1067 likes this.
  40. MBDiagMan

    MBDiagMan En-Route

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    Messages:
    4,215
    Location:
    NorthEast Texas
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Doc
    Makes sense, but why would that matter to the OP? He said it would be the last plane of his life. He won’t be selling it in this life time.