WWYD - looking at a PA28 that's been sitting a year after prop strike

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by k9medic, Apr 5, 2021.

  1. k9medic

    k9medic Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I'm thinking about making on an offer on a PA28 that has been sitting at my airport for the past year after having a prop strike while taxiing.

    Overall the paint is peeling but the interior is in average shape. Obviously out of annual and no idea if it's subject to the AD for the spar inspection.

    At what price would I even start the offer?
     
  2. Huckster79

    Huckster79 Pattern Altitude

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    Take over of the hangar rent?

    You could be looking at an overhaul, these birds just aren’t worth a ton when ya figure what the coast of an overhaul and new prop is going to run ya...
     
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  3. luvflyin

    luvflyin Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Without getting a Pre Buy from a reputable A&P first, what the Huckster said above. Depending on what rent is:D
     
  4. k9medic

    k9medic Pre-takeoff checklist

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    It's on the line so minimal cost there. I figured at a minimum it would need an engine inspection and prop plus paint.
     
  5. bflynn

    bflynn Final Approach

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    What kind of PA-28? There's a wide range and the value might make a difference.

    Example, a 1970 PA-28 in average condition should be around 45-50k, call it 47k. With an engine that needs replacement, it's down to 36k and another 7k for the prop. Paint being in bad condition takes another 10k off. So those known items are a big hit to value and you're around $19,000. You still need an A&P to look at it for other items.

    The spar AD is difficult because it's a low risk/high cost item. Not many airplanes fail it, but those who do incur a big bill, maybe totalling the aircraft. Personally, I'd require that to be complied as part of a deal. If it fails the AD on both spars, it's scrap, on one it's near scrap.

    Bottom line, I'll take on your headache for 19k, but it has to pass the spar AD first. 19K is the buying price, not a starting negotiation price.

    That's a tough one, but at least there is still value left in it.

    Now, apply the same thing to a PA-28-140 and there might be no value left.

    OTOH, when you're done, you have an airplane that's in the 65k range at least. There might actually be money to be made in flipping this if you have the cash to do all that work.
     
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  6. mondtster

    mondtster En-Route

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    If you're unsure of the condition and the value of the airplane it is going to be tough to start negotiations.

    At a minimum, you're looking at the Lycoming prop strike AD compliance, a new or repaired prop, and an annual. A PPI would be able to tell you what else needs compliance (such as the two spar ADs) and the overall condition of the airplane that would help you place a value on it.

    The Lycoming prop strike AD does not require a complete engine disassembly and inspection but most people would probably want one, which will likely turn up other engine problems that need addressing.
     
  7. steingar

    steingar Taxi to Parking

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    Repeat after me: There are no bargains in aviation. There are no bargains in aviation. There are no bargains in aviation.

    My guess is after doing all the stuff that Cherokee needs you'll be financially upside down on it. Piper made a boatload of Cherokees. One would hope you can find one without such major problems.
     
  8. murphey

    murphey Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Sitting outside for a year in Florida. Welcome to salt-water corrosion.

    Engine cost will run between $10K (R&R and inspection) up to $25K (R&R and overhaul) - might make more sense to get a new engine. Add in another $5K or so for a prop.

    I'd look for something else.
     
  9. EdFred

    EdFred Taxi to Parking

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    There are if you find them. Still WAY WAY WAY ahead on the Comanche. Bought it for less than 25% below market, and am still waiting on the "killer annual" after having 12 of them done.
     
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  10. mondtster

    mondtster En-Route

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    I agree. There are no bargains and even if the OP does all the work himself there is a high potential that the project will end up over the originally anticipated budget. Oftentimes that will eat up any cost savings or profit that one would get over buying an airworthy example of the same airplane.
     
  11. 455 Bravo Uniform

    455 Bravo Uniform En-Route

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    Your answer is in the “mathing” above. Figure out your safety factor/cushion, the other party’s intent to negotiate, then make the offer accordingly.

    No risk, no reward. Monetarily speaking of course, not safety-wise.
     
  12. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    The Lycoming teardown for the prop strike is really pulling the accessory case only. However, remember that an engine that's been sitting because the owner is unwilling or unable to put it back into airworthy condition probably indicates that it's likely to have more serious problems than just the need for the sudden stoppage inspection.

    When you're down to the bottom, things like what the radios are and whether the tanks are full figure highly into the estimated value.
     
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  13. k9medic

    k9medic Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I think it’s a mid 90’s 161.

    I have a flying Cherokee 6 so this would just be a little side project or a part out.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  14. Sierra_Hotel

    Sierra_Hotel Line Up and Wait

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    That certainly changes the calculus a little bit. I'd be curious what condition the rest of the plane is in.
     
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  15. bflynn

    bflynn Final Approach

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    My take on value is in the low 30s assuming engine replacement and no other issues.

    A Warrior III in good shape is pretty hot right now. But it depends on having the money to fix it. Personally, if I fixed it up, I'd sell it, buy an early Mooney and pocket the difference.
     
  16. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 En-Route

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    If it is still just sitting outside after a year, I'd assume there is some major legal, financial, or emotional baggage associated with the aircraft. You'd probably never get it free and clear for less than full retail value.
     
  17. k9medic

    k9medic Pre-takeoff checklist

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    You might be right. It was owned by a school so maybe there are some financial and logistics issues there trying
    to get an engine over and such?
     
  18. mondtster

    mondtster En-Route

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    When you said what it was, I assumed it was owned by a school. I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a legal or insurance dispute over who is paying for the damage that has it sitting idle. Add COVID to the list of things causing trouble and it is easy to imagine why it hasn’t been fixed yet.
     
  19. WDD

    WDD Pattern Altitude

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    Never owned an airplane guy here - can a person get title insurance for an airplane, similar to what you get when you buy a house?
     
  20. Lindberg

    Lindberg En-Route

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    Yes.
     
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  21. Jim K

    Jim K Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    It can be done. A guy on the piper forum rescued a warrior that had been abandoned on the ramp for a few years. After going through it with a fine tooth comb, he stuck some radios in it and flew it 1500 miles home. Difference being it was in Arizona, obviously a far friendlier environment than Florida if you're an airplane.

    Being that "new", if the paint is shot, then it's probably lived outside its whole life. In Florida....

    First place I'd look is where the steel bracket is riveted to the rear spar under the flap.
     
  22. murphey

    murphey Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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  23. mondtster

    mondtster En-Route

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    I agree. The good news is that I'm fairly certain that all the Pipers from that era will be undercoated which should help but won't necessarily solve all the concerns.
     
  24. codeeno

    codeeno Pre-takeoff checklist

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    On other thing that you didn't mention and would need to be considered - what are the avionics like? Is the plane ADSB compliant? You can drop a boat load of money in a panel. So knowing what you are looking at, what you must have and what you want - in terms of panel updates should be factored into your overall "investment".

    Dean
     
  25. Racerx

    Racerx Line Up and Wait

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  26. Rebel

    Rebel Filing Flight Plan

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    IMHO, there are too many unknowns about this aircraft. It's a project aircraft, fit only for those with the skills to do a lot of work on it. The market has plenty of alternatives with a lot lower risk.
     
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  27. Wagondriver

    Wagondriver Pre-takeoff checklist

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    buy it cheap, if it needs too much, part it out!
     
  28. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 Final Approach

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    what's the intended use? flipping?
     
  29. k9medic

    k9medic Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I thought about that or even teaching my son to fly in it (I'm not going to teach him in my Cherokee 6) and then selling it or putting it into a rental.
     
  30. WDD

    WDD Pattern Altitude

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    I’d pick a plane that has a better background for my son to learn and solo in.
     
  31. DaleB

    DaleB En-Route

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    Are you looking for an airplane, or a really, really expensive airplane restoration hobby?

    In my experience, buying something "cheap" and getting it back into serviceable condition can work... IF you can and want to do the work yourself. If you're going to have to pay others to do it, then the seller has already done that math and decided to walk away.

    With cars and houses, you can do most of the work yourself even if you're not professional, and it's up to you to figure out whether or not you should. With airplanes, it's a little different unless you have an A&P certificate.

    It's "only" a 25 or so year old airplane. But, it's a former flight school plane, and it's sitting outside in FL... this airplane owes the world nothing. I would not expect a good outcome.
     
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  32. RyanB

    RyanB Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    Sat for one year? I wouldn’t discount it yet.

    To put things into perspective, I was up at a maintenance shop yesterday afternoon and a couple of the A&P’s were just about ready to fly a Cardinal that had sat on the ramp, out of annual for six years. Someone was interested in buying it, so they did an annual on it, couldn’t find anything wrong with it and flew it yesterday for the first time in six years. Other than a few minor glitches, it was a success!
     
  33. Snowmass

    Snowmass Line Up and Wait

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    Prop strike? A long time ago all that was required was a check to see if the crank was bent using a dial gauge on the prop flange. I would like to see hard data as to how much damage is actually found upon tear down if the crank passes a dial gauge test.
     
  34. JAWS

    JAWS Cleared for Takeoff

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  35. Initial Fix

    Initial Fix Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I was wondering about this too. Was the pilot who did the prop strike flying without insurance? If they were that cash strapped, what other maintenance decisions were made?
     
  36. k9medic

    k9medic Pre-takeoff checklist

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    It is owned by a larger flight school. Not sure what is up
     
  37. Jim K

    Jim K Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    Maybe the insurance company totalled it and just hasn't gotten around to dealing with it?
     
  38. TrueCourse

    TrueCourse Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I would approach this example of an airplane with much caution. This engine, having sat for six years, is one I’d expect to have some corrosion issues that may some day (well before TBO) will have problems. It’s a gamble.
     
  39. MarkH

    MarkH Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I would not pay more than the core value of a prop strike engine. During a year when aircraft rentals were up compared to previous years, while installed in a rather popular and in demand airframe. Someone made the business decision that it was not worth the time to deal with.

    Offering $1 for the aircraft means taking the bet that:
    1) They don't know something that you don't.
    2) They did their math wrong on the value of addressing this rather than paying the tie down cost every month to ignore it.
    3) Your time is worth significantly enough less to change the math on if this is worthwhile to deal with.
    or 4) They are just bad at estimating value.

    There is a non-zero chance that one of these 4 is true, but make sure you understand what you are betting on before you put your money on the line.
     
  40. bflynn

    bflynn Final Approach

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    In average condition, a Warrior III is at least a 90k airplane. Discounting it by $89,999 is a non starter. Even buying it for the core won't fly.

    This one you have to do the maths on, then add a buffer for unknowns. It's restorable. The question is, what is the value of the airplane after it's restored? My fear is structural damage on the firewall that requires skin replacement...I think that would be totaled.