You HAVE an airplane. You use it for...

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by skier, Sep 13, 2016.

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Airplane Owners: What best fits your actual usage? Pick no more than two, please!

  1. I take the plane up when I want to relax. Chasing the sunset after work.

    43 vote(s)
    35.2%
  2. I use my airplane to take friends flying, airshows, camping, $100 burgers. Just fun.

    64 vote(s)
    52.5%
  3. I use mine for mid-range personal travel - beats driving!

    68 vote(s)
    55.7%
  4. I use mine for long-distance personal travel - beats the airlines!

    28 vote(s)
    23.0%
  5. I use it for business travel - trips, commutes, any business use.

    16 vote(s)
    13.1%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. skier

    skier Line Up and Wait

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    This thread is based upon a thread over on the homebuiltairplanes forum where we were discussing inexpensive aircraft which spun off a thread on what people use their planes for. See below for Topaz's question

    Reposting the thread over here to get input from a different group of people in the aviation community.
     
  2. EdFred

    EdFred Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    You have the options limited to one only, so I can't answer as two for them are my primary usage.
     
  3. JCranford

    JCranford Pattern Altitude

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    That's fuuuny..
     
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  4. tawood

    tawood Pattern Altitude

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    That word jumped out at me too...don't usually see "inexpensive" and "aircraft" together.
     
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  5. JustinD

    JustinD Line Up and Wait

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    I would probably clump the first two answer choices together! I use it for personal enjoyment which includes the $100 hamburger and just general fun flying around. I also use it for mid range travel. I fly all over Florida with the thing visiting friends and family and the keys several times a year, my 1h50m flight to the keys sure beats the almost 7 hour drive! I would use for longer travel but fortunately with the airline gig comes some benifits and it's hard for me to justify the flight on longer vacation type trips because of the cost. Of course there are sometimes I fly it to someplace far because I just want the flight to be part of the trip, but I seldom use it for much over the 300nm bracket.
     
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  6. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Why only two choices?
     
  7. Soldier64

    Soldier64 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I'm with the group. I use mine to relax, take friends up, go to airshows, volunteer with PNP, medium range personal travel, long range personal travel, and I take her on business trips...
     
  8. skier

    skier Line Up and Wait

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    That's how the original poll was setup on homebuiltairplanes. I figured I'd try to keep the poll the same such that we could compare the results at each site. Yes it is limiting, but it does also force you to decide what you do most.

    Which is how the threads over on homebuiltairplanes started. Topaz noted that some of the most popular threads there seemed to be the ones talking about inexpensive, predominantly single-seat aircraft. Not exactly what seems too popular in the wild. Another thread there looks at what people consider inexpensive. So far the polls have a fairly good distribution centered between <$20,000 and <$30,000.
     
  9. Indiana_Pilot

    Indiana_Pilot Line Up and Wait

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    Flying "B"
    Not fair.. I use mine for all of the choices...
     
  10. Greenhead

    Greenhead Pre-Flight

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    My 16yr old daughter wants to become an airline pilot. So, I went and purchased a plane to train in to get her certificates.

    It being a childhood dream of mine also made the decision easier.

    Some reason I'm not seeing the poll?
     
  11. Bill Jennings

    Bill Jennings Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Right now all it does is lighten my wallet.
     
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  12. Shawn

    Shawn En-Route

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    I bought mine thinking it would just be $100 Hamburger runs and poking holes in sky...turns out use it way more for personal and business travel than I thought would have been feasible.
     
  13. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Well you were trying to lose weight, weren't you? :D
     
  14. mondtster

    mondtster En-Route

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    This ought to be interesting to watch. All too often I read and hear comments that imply that many recreational pilot owners (that is, ones not flying for a living) feel obligated to go out and fly their airplane not because they want to, but because they are concerned about the plane's deterioration if they don't.

    As for myself, I use my airplanes when I want to relax and blow off a little steam, plus use it for medium distance travel and camping trips. I'm looking forward to putting my new airplane on skis this winter and doing a little ice fishing with it. What I don't do is go out and fly because I feel I have to. I fly often enough as it is, if my plane sits unused for the better portion of the month because I'm busy then so be it.
     
  15. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    I think my use is pretty atypical since the airplane is not mine, it's owned by the non-profit I'm President of. As such, it has a job, which I classified as "business use" since its job is transporting animals. That makes up the vast majority of the hours put on the plane.

    For my personal use, we use it basically for any travel. The 414 is a bad $100 hamburger plane for many reasons and we have other ways that we relax. Although we have talked for some time about adding a little taildragger to the collection that we could use for going up and counting cows or the like.
     
  16. MickYoumans

    MickYoumans Cleared for Takeoff

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    That's what I was thinking.

    Between Feb 2012 and April 2015 I used my plane to commute back and forth each week to a consulting job that was 130 miles from home. Since then I have just been using it to visit family, take friends flying and fly-ins. I went to Triple Tree last Friday and Sun N Fun for fours days back in the spring. I wanted to fly to Oshkosh but my wife had to have a test performed at the hospital on her back the Wednesday of Oshkosh. My last Uncle passed away that same morning and his funeral was the Saturday of Oshkosh. So, Oshkosh didn't work out for me this year.

    The bottom line for me, I like any excuse to go flying. About the only thing on the list that does not apply for me is long distance travel for work where I have to meet a schedule and can't afford to risk the weather flying GA.
     
  17. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    Yeah my airplane's use has been variable/hybrid with the years. it started out as a way to fly with the baby since the warrior was too slow and climb-anemic for our increased load. Then the kid's demand and the wife's schooling slowed everything down on the leisure and budget and it sat for a while. Then some long TDYs enabled me to make it a weekly commuter, and it really shined in that role. Then another lull. Then some frequent 400NM non stops to family. Nowadays it's back to low use. The future seems to hint at another batch of work commute in the next two years, in which it will probably shine once again.

    What I've found is that life changes pace, but getting rid of it just because of lulls in use doesn't seem like a good economy. I can't find this capability on the market for what I paid for it in 2013, and the transaction costs of re-buying the airplane every time my mission dictated a surge in use would have made my long term ownership costs much more expensive and cumbersome. So at least for me, it pays for the airplane to sit when it does. It doesn't bother me to go and fly it out for 45 minutes every other weekend in order to keep the engine and rubber components from deteriorating. And yes, I do find excuses to make an out of town errand a flying trip.

    Is this my forever airplane? Nah. My next airplane will have longer legs for my 5% mission, and it will be a 250HP+ Lyco. Hopefully my income supports that in a decade's time.
     
  18. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    For young Eagles,transport between mass and Fla twice a year, tour the country.
     
  19. lancie00

    lancie00 Line Up and Wait

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    I try to make a fishing trip every year (350 miles). Then I also fly for work occasionally (150± miles). Wish I could fly more but money is tight with 2 kids in high school.
     
  20. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    If I had to list them in order (too bad a poll couldn't do that) I'd choose 3, 5, 2, 4, 1.
     
  21. pburger

    pburger Pre-takeoff checklist

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    All of the above.
     
  22. Acrodustertoo

    Acrodustertoo Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Those are all wrong answer choices. You missed this one:

    <> To meet chicks
     
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  23. Bill Jennings

    Bill Jennings Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    [​IMG]
     
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  24. Lowflynjack

    Lowflynjack Pattern Altitude

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    I primarily use my 140 for fun trips, camping, photography, etc.

    It's amazing that even my lowly plane can save so much time. My plane is about a 100mph plane. I recently flew from Austin, TX to Blakesburg, IA. Google Maps says this is a 14 hour drive and that doesn't count stops for fuel, food, etc. It's about a 7 hour flight, so I can fly there and back in the time it would take to drive... and it's a lot more fun!
     
  25. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    You don't need an actual airplane for that. You just need your pilot card. In fact you don't want them to see your plane if you have one. Just tell them you're a 777 captain.
     
  26. jaymark6655

    jaymark6655 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I don't own a plane, but curious as to what should be considered long distance. Currently renting my non-training time is split between fun (every time I fly, its fun) and business travel. Renting and doing business travel is hard since there is the pesky 3 hr/day min, so they have to be overnight trips, most of my business related travel is weeks long. Last trip I wish I had a personal plane for was to Fredericksburg, VA; would have only been a 3 to 4 hour trip the day I was required to be there, instead I had to leave the say prior, on my wife's birthday, and ended of traveling for roughly 14 hours due to layovers and malfunctions.

    People think I was exaggerating in another post describing how much I hate commercial so here is the break down of my last business trip:

    Left my house to drive to the closest commercial airport (would like to point I leave next to an airport) 09:30
    Arrived at the airport 2 hours before planned departure 11:15 (Total 1.8 hrs)

    13:20 (after plane was supposed to depart and we still had not boarded) announcement made that plane was delayed until 17:45 due to an emergency on previous flight requiring slide deployment and parts for repair need to be flown in from parts unknown, managed to run to another gate and get switched to that flight (the only other plane going to Atlanta were my connection was) before everyone else, new flight left at 17:00 which got me there just in time to not miss the last flight going to Virginia that day. Arrived at 18:37 (Total 9.1 hrs)

    After lay over and another delay (trim malfunction, about 40 minutes to fix) plane left at 19:40 and arrived in Richmond at 21:50 (Total 12.3 hrs)

    Delayed getting luggage till 23:00 due to compartment door being jammed. (Total 13.5 hrs)

    Drove to Fredericksburg, VA and arrived at midnight (Total 14.5 hrs, Due to rules were I work I was only paid for 10.7 hrs)
    The return flight had a layover in Detroit and only took 3.5 hrs, plus the 2 hour prior thing, and driving: Total about 8.3 hrs

    I had to spend a week there, otherwise I would have rented.
     
  27. Acrodustertoo

    Acrodustertoo Ejection Handle Pulled

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    FTFY
     
  28. EvilEagle

    EvilEagle Cleared for Takeoff

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    What constitutes long distance travel? Mileage? Time?
     
  29. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    Probably depends on the individual's definition.
     
  30. TopazHBA

    TopazHBA Filing Flight Plan

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    Hello!

    I'm Topaz over at the HomebuiltAirplanes forum, and I'm the one who started this madness of polls about "inexpensive" aircraft, which Skier thoughtfully repeated here. He let me know about this iteration of the poll, so I thought I'd sign up here and answer a few of your questions, as at least some form of thanks for participating in this little exercise of mine. I really do appreciate your time in answering these questions, and giving your comments.

    First, some background. As I'm sure you do here, we cover a lot of ground over at HBA, and the notion of "inexpensive" aircraft has developed into a recurring theme on our forum. Those threads tend to be some of the longest-running, highest participation, threads we have. It occurred to me to ask why that was so, and I've set up a series of polls on our forum to explore those questions. This poll about usage is part of that exercise. While I was originally limiting my survey pool to people interested in homebuilding aircraft, Skier's posting here has raised some interesting data. I'll share more on that in a minute. But first, your questions.

    "Inexpensive Aircraft. That's funny!" Yeah, it is pretty funny, but in the homebuilding world we have some more options than you do in the type-certificated world, and whatever "inexpensive" means to an individual, it has become clear that there's quite a strong interest in such a concept.

    "Why only two choices?" Because if I didn't, a lot of people would check all the boxes because, sometimes, once in a while, they do all those things with their airplane. I recognize that people use their airplanes for a multitude of reasons, but I'm looking for the core, most-frequent, usage. Limiting you to two answers forces that. I'm sorry if it was frustrating. Being able to list all of them in order of priority would be great, but our forum software, at least, doesn't allow that.

    "To meet chicks" Duh. Why belabor the obvious. ;) Bill Jenning's response was hysterical. I'm still chuckling.

    "What is 'Long-distance?" As noted, it's an individual definition. I constrained it broadly, in terms of "beats driving" or "beats the airlines", meaning, "distance you'd otherwise drive a car", and "distance you'd otherwise take an airline flight." A precise definition isn't needed for my purposes here.

    So again, thank you for participating. It's been very interesting seeing how (and that) the results vary between the two groups mostly flying different kinds of aircraft: homebuilts and type-certificated aircraft. In the poll here, the answers have clustered largely around "airshows/$100 burgers" and "mid-range personal travel" (nearly tied) whereas, on HBA, the answers from the homebuilders have largely clustered around "Chasing sunsets after work" (currently the top named usage) and "airshows/$100 burgers". That's really interesting data, at least to me.

    As a new member here, the forum software won't allow me to link to the polls on HBA but, if there's interest, maybe Skier can do that.

    If I can answer any other questions, please let me know. I'm checking this thread roughly daily.
     
  31. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Long distance travel (coast to coast) but unfortunately it's been used mostly for local flights.
     

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  32. OkieFlyer

    OkieFlyer En-Route

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    I'm a fair weather pilot, and I use the 182 mostly for cruising around locally for my enjoyment, and mostly within 100 miles of home. Secondarily, I use it to haul the family to visit the grandparents, each about 110 nm away. Flew to Oshkosh from Oklahoma this year, and will likely do so in future years. We'll likely be using it for the occasional vacation to various places, but those will be few and far between.
     
  33. RyanShort1

    RyanShort1 En-Route

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    My most common usage is missing... flying it with students (for tailwheel).
     
  34. Twin_Flyer

    Twin_Flyer Cleared for Takeoff

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    Welcome to POA... Hope you enjoy your stay... Interesting group of fliers here....:goofy::goofy::goofy:
     
  35. cowman

    cowman En-Route PoA Supporter

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    I got it for medium - long range travel because I hate the airlines and I'm tired of driving.

    However if I haven't done that in a while... or just because I also do $100 hamburger type stuff.
     
  36. StinkBug

    StinkBug Cleared for Takeoff

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    You didn't list my usage. Training and time building. That second part usually involves mid-range travel and having fun though, so that's where I voted.
     
  37. skier

    skier Line Up and Wait

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  38. TopazHBA

    TopazHBA Filing Flight Plan

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    Yes, thank you all for participating! I appreciate the welcome.
     
  39. N747JB

    N747JB Final Approach

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    With a twin you almost always have a destination, no real just out flying around for fun. I will fly myself to just about any destination east of the Mississippi except New York. :D This week I flew from Atlanta to Pinehurst NC to pick up my in laws and fly them to Destin. My travel time was 3.2 hours, it would have taken them 11-12 hours to drive and they probably wouldn't have made the drive.