Stepping up to bigger planes without killing the bank

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by ebykowsky, Feb 2, 2021.

  1. ebykowsky

    ebykowsky Cleared for Takeoff

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    Hi PoA friends!

    It's been a good 5 years since my last post... hope y'all are well :)

    I'm in Atlanta and a part of a local flying club (LGE Flying Club) with 2 172's and 2 182RGs. I'll be finishing my instrument rating next month, and want to begin stepping up into slightly more "exciting" aircraft over the course of the next year. My mission hasn't changed much, but I'm simply getting the itch to fly something with more complexity on a more consistent basis. The local clubs I've looked up are either crazy expensive (e.g., $425/hr Cirrus) or require massive amounts of training before flying anything bigger (e.g., 25 hours in make & model to fly a Piper Lance)

    I really would love to get more time doing more diverse flying--whether that's aerobatics, tailwheel, or bigger aircraft, but simply can't find an avenue for this. Any suggestions? Or should I just bum around the airport and look for sympathetic aircraft owners who want a co-pilot?

    Thanks!
     
  2. drummer4468

    drummer4468 Pre-Flight

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    Look for regional aviation FB pages. I was surprised to find a good handful of pages here in the northeast, full of friendly members that often offer stick time in their planes. They also often have meetups, fly-ins, or even zoom meetings that would be great to network with other pilots/owners.

    Good luck! I'll be in the same boat once I finish my CPL. Looking to get into a Bonanza or maybe Mooney at some point in the not-very-distant future.
     
  3. Jim K

    Jim K Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    I wish i could be of help, but I will note this: the 25 hour thing is probably a requirement of their insurance, and you may find it to be very common. When i was shopping insurance for my Lance, the only company with a <25 hour training requirement was avemco, at 10. They gave me a 10% discount when I hit 25hrs, which made them just slightly cheaper than the other quotes.

    I'll second the suggestion of the regional Facebook pages. I posted looking for a club for a friend who lives about an hour away, and got LOTS of responses.
     
  4. BrianNC

    BrianNC En-Route

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    The 182RG doesn't fit the bill for more complexity?

    Out of curiosity, how available are the 182 RGs? Have you ever flown them? I looked at that club quite awhile ago and had forgotten about it. I see they just went up from $500 joining fee to $1000. Pretty decent club?
     
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  5. bflynn

    bflynn Final Approach

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    Some insurance companies are a little weird that way. I’ve seen some who consider every different model as a different type. For example, a SR-20 and SR-22 or Mooney C/E/F are all different to them. So, for insurance purposes, you need checkouts and CFI time in each.
     
  6. ebykowsky

    ebykowsky Cleared for Takeoff

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    The 182's are pretty available, and there's always at least one plane available (unless you're trying to take something for a full weekend). I'd say ~50% of the time the RG is available in the hours I'm trying to fly (the other 182 is not an RG fyi)

    As for complexity, yes it's better than a 172, but basically feels like a bigger 172 with a gear lever and constant speed prop after a few hours in it

    Thanks for the advice from Jim & Drummer. I just signed up to the Georgia pilots facebook page
     
  7. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    welcome back!
     
  8. wayne

    wayne Pattern Altitude

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    What do you need that the 182RG doesn't do? I fly a SR22, but it's not much faster than the 182RG. I would imagine even the RG version has quite a bit more useful load than the SR22. The cabin may be a little bit smaller in the 182RG, but that's about it.

    There is a Decathalon for rent at SkyBound at PDK. They also have a Lance and a Seneca II if you want to get your multi-engine cert.
     
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  9. Clip4

    Clip4 Final Approach

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    As Wayne said, a 182RG is a solid XC plane if it’s model year 1979 or later. 155 KTS on 13.5 gph and 700 lb useful load with 88 gallons usable. The 78 models didn’t have long range tanks.
     
  10. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg Administrator Management Council Member

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    The thing of it is.. if you're going to fly something with more complexity, you need to stay proficient at that thing.. so we're talking dozens of hours a year or more just to stay sharp. So you're looking at a few grand a year regardless.

    425/hr for the cirrus probably isn't nuts. Like a lot of things, you're not paying to fly it, you're paying to walk away from it when you're through. :D

    Can you offer yourself as a safety pilot for some locals?
     
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  11. Larry in TN

    Larry in TN Pattern Altitude

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    You didn't mention what avionics do your club planes have. If none of them have the G1000 then perhaps try a plane with one and really learn how to use it in the IFR environment. Lots of capability in there which will be satisfying to master.

    What is available for multi-engine training? That would be a new, challenging, more complex experience for you. Even if it's just a simple Seminole.

    I also think the Cirrus would give you a lot of different complexities, which you'd enjoy, but that price tag seems high. Either it's a very new upper end Cirrus or, perhaps, they are quoted a price based on tach time instead of Hobbs? Are their any older Cirrus available at lower rates? Maybe even an SR20?
     
  12. WDD

    WDD Pattern Altitude

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    What exactly do you see yourself doing? Acrobatics? Buy a Vans something. Slow moving tail dragger to take to PeachState Saturday breakfast? Get a 152. You can stay with the club and then rent out the C182 or C182 RG when you want to do X Country.
     
  13. WDD

    WDD Pattern Altitude

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    Planes are available for the most part, and they are flying quite a bit. There is a Skyhawk, an up engined 180 HP Skyhawk, a straight leg 182 and a 182 RG. All have GTN 650's, all are kept up well. Good guys in the club, decent planes, decent rental rates, and CFI's if you want a new rating. I got in last June, but I think there is a waiting list now. Seems to be a crush of new folks applying, just like in most other schools, clubs, rental places, etc.
     
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  14. ebykowsky

    ebykowsky Cleared for Takeoff

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    Thanks all for the thoughts! I went by to check out the Cirrus today, fell in love it, but realized spending $400/hr on flying isn't worth it and getting my instrument (and staying proficient with it) is going to be a really good challenge in & of itself

    There's a few multi engines in the area and I've also reached out to a soaring club about joining. I think between IFR, soaring, and spending more time around the airport, my itch should be scratched :)

    Thanks all!
     
  15. Ed Haywood

    Ed Haywood Pre-takeoff checklist

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    182RG has CS prop, retractable gear, cowl flaps, and high performance engine. The only way you are going to get more mechanically complex is to add an engine. Cirrus is actually less complex. Avionics are a different story, but there are numerous options for retrofitting a 182 to glass panel, and it's getting more affordable every day.

    Sounds like you have a fantastic setup with that flying club. I would give my right arm for access to a club like that. If I were you I would fly the heck out of those club planes, and satisfy your jones for strange by renting elsewhere once in a while. If it flies, floats, or flirts ...
     
  16. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 Final Approach

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    sometimes less is more.
     
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  17. Kelvin

    Kelvin En-Route

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    ^^^^THIS^^^^
     
  18. Kelvin

    Kelvin En-Route

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    I'd fly the RG.

    If you want exciting, get a Citabria.
     
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