Thinking about giving up on aviation

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Grum.Man, Aug 10, 2018.

  1. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    I posted a rant a while back about the condition of my airport and particularly my hangar. The owner finally got around to look at my hangar and told me today it needed more work than he was willing to invest so I needed to move out. I could rent a smaller hangar for 100 more a month. When I complained about the price increase and general condition of the airport he told me to remove my airplane from the airport by the end of the month. I offered to fix the hangar at my expense and they said no thanks. Before you accuse me of being a jerk, just know that over the past 6 months they have run 20 tenants off the airport. We have gone from having a short waiting list to 31 open hangars.

    I have called every airport within an hour drive and nobody has any hangar space. I refuse to let my airplane sit on a ramp rotting away. If I have to drive more than an hour I’ll never use it so what is the point? I’m to the point now that if nothing becomes available I am going to remove the wings and put in a storage unit and just walk away from aviation.

    Lesson learned, a crappy hangar is better than no hangar so keep your mouths shut!
     
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  2. FormerHangie

    FormerHangie Pattern Altitude

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    Sorry to hear of your troubles, it sounds like the owner is getting ready to close the airport.

    Hangar space has been hard to come by for as long as I've been around aviation, which is pushing 50 years.
     
  3. luvflyin

    luvflyin Final Approach

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    Sounds like something is going on there. Hang out at Council meetings. Check for zoning change requests and stuff like that. You said the owner. Of your hangar or the whole airport? Is it private?
     
  4. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    It’s private public use.
     
  5. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I would try full covers for outside storage ,before giving up on aviation. Full covers can be a pita.
     
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  6. Vaflier

    Vaflier Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Any chance of putting together a group and buying the airport ????.
     
  7. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    I have a feeling it would end up the same as if the airplane was 2 hours away. Too much of a hassle to use.
     
  8. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    People have offered and he want sell.
     
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  9. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Sht grum, sorry bout that. I can get you the name of the woman in charge of the waiting list at JQF. It wasn’t quite as long a wait as I thought it was going to be. You could always go down to Wilgrove and rent one of their shtty shade hangers.
     
  10. Brad Z

    Brad Z En-Route

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    There seems to be more than a few dick heads in the world of general aviation. Sounds like this guy is one of them.

    I blame it on all of the leaded fuel.
     
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  11. N659HB

    N659HB Pattern Altitude

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    That sucks. Any airparks nearby?
     
  12. Clip4

    Clip4 En-Route

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    Privately owned public airports are rapidly becoming a thing of the past. Buildings and runways in bad repair and insufficient revenue for upkeep.
     
  13. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    I appreciate it bud, just too far away to make sense.
     
  14. N3368K

    N3368K Line Up and Wait

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    My former home drome, privately owned, public use, is sitting empty. Ten 40x60 hangars. Empty because the family cannot get along and one of them tried trapping us all by closing airport. It is open again, but no one has come back and there is a pending lawsuit over ownership so neither side can rent it out.

    I have my RV nearby, but my J-3 is an hour fifteen minute drive away.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018
  15. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    The owner lives two hours away. They took the keypad entrance off the FBO and installed cameras because they thought people were stealing toilet paper and coffee.
     
  16. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    Best guess is he is loosing 7k a month in hangar rent now.
     
  17. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    They are all grass which the Venture can’t do.
     
  18. TRocket

    TRocket Line Up and Wait

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    @Grum.Man ....I fly out of wilgrove and they would be more than happy to have you down our way, but I'm guessing that's a pretty good hike for you. Where are you based out of now? Your profile says you are in statesville but pretty sure SVH is not the airport you are referring to in your post.
     
  19. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Part of that problem are owners who have not caught up with the fact that it's not the 70s anymore.
     
  20. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Just need a nice sweetheart deal with Signature to fix it. $40 toilet use fee. ;) They’ll pop in a nice new $10M hangar for the jets... oh wait... you don’t own a jet... :)

    I’m not sure what owners not maintaining hangars for decades and then getting into arguments with aircraft owners over their junk that they didn’t maintain, but happily pocketed cash for decades on, has to do with the 70s.

    People wouldn’t park their airplanes in junk hangars in the 70s any more than they will today.

    Hangar owners have known for a long time it’s not the 70s and pocketed lots of money without doing any upkeep of the hangars or anything at many of these private airports. Just figured some cheap crap hangars would last forever I guess.

    We bought our hangar when the owner we were renting from same row, just kept upping the rent on a 70s vintage Port-A-Port. The market crash opened up a bunch of them and we hit on one at a price we liked. Owner of the rental lives in Florida in retirement and just pockets the cash from whoever is in it.

    Anyway Grum, not totally kidding here... have you considered moving a little closer to one of the better run airports? I’m sure that sounds like a hellish plan right now, but honestly, that could be one way to go if you can get in at one of them eventually.

    Don’t know how far from work and other stuff you need to do any of them are, though. I’d certainly consider it before I’d quit flying, but that’s just me.

    I don’t think the Mayor of Centennial has any plans to bulldoze the place like Daly did, so I think we’re good for a little while longer. :)

    I’m REALLY close to 1CO8 at home, but that’s a crazy story and covered long ago in other threads.
     
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  21. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    In the past, as an airport owner, you could be an ******* to your tenants and transients. As aviation contracts, that works less and less.
     
  22. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Seems like Signature still has that attitude in spades unless you’re a Whale in a jet. Did anything really change? :)

    It’s not like most large FBOs are falling over themselves even today to help out light GA. In truth, I can’t think of a time when they did since I started in 1991. About the only places happy to see light GA customers and actually try to help them out, are little rural public airport FBOs. Most others are “polite” but not exactly falling over themselves to serve light GA.

    Most helpful FBOs in over a decade I’ve been to lately we’re Silverhawk in KLNK (and they weren’t falling over themselves, but they at least left me with the impression they gave a crap) and Green Bay. Anything else has been a follow me to the tie downs and you tie it down, the follow me golf cart is gone before you shut down.

    Some more rural places do care, but bigger cities? You’re just in the way of the jets and their passengers. Park over there somewhere and hike in. Place your fuel order at the desk with a bored clerk and you’ll still have to call them the day before you leave to actually be fueled and ready to go when you told them you’re departing. They’ll forget.

    I don’t think this FBO or owners being asses or at least disinterested with light GA is all that new. Didn’t fly in the 70s so I have no other frame of reference, but it’s been this way as long as I’ve been flying. 1991. 27 years.

    Was there a time they actually gave a crap?
     
  23. Let'sgoflying!

    Let'sgoflying! Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The minute I sold my airplane, the airport would change hands and thrive again.
    There's no chance of such a thing?
     
  24. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    I fly out of 8A7 Twin Lakes.
     
  25. Clip4

    Clip4 En-Route

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    Caught up? All those guys who owned those airports in the 70s are old than dirt or dead.
     
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  26. AKBill

    AKBill Pattern Altitude

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    I feel your pain, and hope you come up with a solution to your dilemma. Wondering what of plane do you own?

    If it of any consolation, I have owned my inexpensive, slow and underpowered Beech Sport of 23 years. It's been parked on the ramp in Juneau, AK for most of that 23 years. I fly year round. Juneau is probably one of the worst environments to park outside (that is if you consider living in a rain forest a bad environment). I'm thankful we don't get hail or tornados here. In the winter I use wing, tail and cabin covers. The rest of the year only a cabin cover.

    It does take a lot more effort by the owner to keep the plane in good order when parked outside. I do a lot more preventive maintenance than folks who hangar their planes. The IA's who sign my annual have commented how well my plane is maintained...:)

    On the plus side the airport is only 7 miles from the house and on a bad day it takes me 15 minutes to get there...:)

    I hope you don't loose your hobby because you are forced to park on the ramp until a hangar becomes available to you.
     
  27. Clip4

    Clip4 En-Route

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    I have used Signature and many other the "big" FBOs in SEL aircraft both for business and pleasure flights. They have all provided me first class service and were more than "just polite", but when roll up on ramp with a your ripping me off chip on your shoulder I can see where one might think that.
     
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  28. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Uhhh, not all of us.
    yet.

    edit: Oh wait, you said airPORT owners. I wasn't an airport owner in the '70s, so I am still alive and kicking.
     
  29. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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  30. Let'sgoflying!

    Let'sgoflying! Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Hey grum, that is crazy.
    It looks, at first glance, you are surrounded by a couple dozen airports within 25mi.

    so remove all the grass ones
    what is your minimum acceptable paved length?
    you must have ruled out int, svh, hky due to price/availability
    what about ukf, 78a and those N of Charlotte?

    I presume moving from Statesville is not likely to happen.


    E2A8DF8C-9D42-4285-9AB0-71F7836ED7DD.jpeg
     
  31. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 Line Up and Wait

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    It is hard if not impossible for a private GA airport to survive these days. Too much costs in maintaining the infrastructure, and no way to charge enough to cover it. Even of the public owned airports, most need at least some funds from the local taxpayer base to balance the budget. Most of the examples of self-sustaining airports I have seen are larger, busier airports that can make up the cost through volume, or those that have an alternate means of income, such as an thriving industrial park or mineral rights on the airport property.
     
  32. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser!

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    And yet we expect/demand that they offer free/cheap services and accommodations.
     
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  33. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    I don’t really buy that. There are 77 hangars at the airport that were full for years. If you take the average rent price of 250 each that is 19,250 per month of income not counting fuel sales. They exchange hangar rental to a guy for simple maintenance stuff, and pay a kid to keep the grass mowed. Nothing of note has been done to the facilities in the 5 years I’ve been there. The airport has been there for 30+ years.
     
  34. Paulie

    Paulie Line Up and Wait

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    Want to sell your Questair?
     
  35. Skyrys62

    Skyrys62 Pattern Altitude

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    Sorry to hear of the hassles...ain't nobody got time for that.

    You could possibly move it a ways down the road, buy a badass motorcycle and enjoy the trips.
     
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  36. jmp470

    jmp470 Line Up and Wait

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    One thing I’m noticing in Texas, is older parent owns the airport, he/she gets older, wants kids help. Kids are not into dads /moms hobby, so they sell it to developers and walk away with money. Happened to 3 private airports within 20 miles of me within the past three years.
     
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  37. Grum.Man

    Grum.Man Pattern Altitude

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    No lol. I’ll pickle and store it before I sell it in hopes that someday life will take me to a place with a hangar
     
  38. Dav8or

    Dav8or Final Approach

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    Damn! That sectional looks like it was hit by a big shotgun in space loaded with airports! I don't fully understand the OP's problem. The airport he's based at isn't even the closest one to where he lives. There appear to be loads of them near.

    It sounds like to me he should run all over the area and get on a bunch of different waiting lists for hangars starting with the airport right where he lives. Then I would do the minimum necessary repairs to the hangar he's in now to keep it going on his own dime and labor and forget about talking to the airport manager.

    My experience with waiting lists is they don't take as long as people say they do. When I got on the waiting list for my hangar, I was like number 17 or something and people told me it would take 7 years. Two and half months later, I was moving into my new hangar.

    Most of those names on the list aren't serious, or legitimate anymore. In addition, all it takes is an economic downturn and suddenly you move up the list. The other thing that helped me was my airport getting serious about hangar inspections. It threw out a load of cheaters.
     
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  39. James331

    James331 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That sucks man :(

    Is there any level open land you could use/rent/buy and toss up a pole barn?

    Airports are nice, but a second choice from a good off airport solution.
     
  40. wsuffa

    wsuffa Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Interesting.

    I had my last avionics work done at Robbie Greer's shop there. As I recall, that airport was started by a bunch of ex-Piedmont (retired) pilots. When I was there, a few years ago, the runway was in "OK but not great" condition. Some of the buildings were nice, others not so. Seemed like a nice little airport to me.