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About iaw4

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    Jr. Crew Member

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  1. the truth hurts! yes, you are right. SoCal is not Mojave. however, the salt should not be able to move far inland. and, although SoCal is not as dry as Mojave, it is still a lot drier than, say, the NorthEast. my main concern was whether composite was worse then metal, or just equally bad, so that I know what awaits me. I have an idea of how badly metal airplanes deteriorate and that it can be fixed with extra maintenance.
  2. yes, and there are some truly amazing airplanes there, as in however, these are metal airplanes. I have also seen metal airplanes stored outdoors in the Northeast, and despite rain and sun, they actually held up pretty well. I was worried about the composites. But I got the message sofar that, due to the good paint, it should be ok. I am thinking that I will need a new paint job every 5 years or so, and I will be ok. the tarmac is indeed unpleasantly hot. and wrapping and unwrapping bruce condoms in 100 degree weather is not much fun, either. if I can get a sun shade, I would pay for it for sure. I will see whether I can find one, but I am not too hopeful.
  3. can you elaborate a little bit? there must be some reasonable range here. or worst case scenario. this seems like a good rule of thumb for comparing same-age airplane. alas, a new airplane costs around $150,000. A 12-year old costs around $60,000. a 10% rule is probably misleading. I will also need to adjust for sellers that have already replaced the rocket, vs. those who have not. etc. I agree, but $10-15,000/year for a hangar is just too much. Driving 150 miles in SoCal can take you 10 hours ;-). I hope an extra $2k/year will cover the extra restoration.
  4. in SoCal, we are "blessed" with low humidity. in fact, we are so blessed, that it makes the news every couple of years (when we run out of water) ;-). on the negative side, we do have large day-night differences, though. We all agree that outdoor storage is terrible. This applies both to aluminum cans and carbon fiber construction. I have asked around and most people seem to believe that it's no worse for one than the other. Does anyone have any (other) comparative experiences with aluminum vs fiber?
  5. iaw4

    market analysis

    yikes, I had no idea that I was hitting a nerve. I was not trying to knock sports pilots. There are terrible pilots with PPL, and great pilots with a sports license. The only reason why I mentioned that I had a "real" pilot's license is that I was pointing out that I was planning to buy a CT not because of the lower training and medical requirements, but because I think the Flight Design CT* is simply a superior airplane. That is, I could buy any other GA airplane, instead. I will replace it with the phrasing PPL. This is what I meant. I hope this will soothe the nerves. --- I suspect that the sales patterns look pretty similar for other airplanes. After a large initial batch of airplanes (at the LSA init), the volume declined as the initial demand was exhausted and as used airplanes started competing with new airplanes. It is likely similar for other (LSA) airplanes. Warmi---I think FD is the market leader because it is a great airplane. I don't see anything that looks better. I don't think it was first-mover advantage. I suspect that airplane building has good economies of scale. it may be much cheaper to build 50 airplanes (per airplane) than 5 airplanes. I think this is also why new prices have increased so much...and not just for CT* airplanes. This is perhaps a rare case where coordination among buyers could help the seller. I am guessing, but I do not know this, that if FD were to get an order for 50 airplanes, they could probably sell them for two-thirds of what they have to charge now at the trickle-build rate. I am concerned that FD's planned C4 4-seater will compete with used airplanes, not just with new airplanes, at $250k/airplane. /iaw
  6. iaw4

    market analysis

    My day job is as an economics professor. so, I spent some fun time analyzing the annual and used FD CT* market. I thought I would share it for those interested. https://www.dropbox.com/s/17e150agb4z1bpa/flightdesign.pdf?dl=0 Let me add that I very much like both the company and the airplanes, so I plan to buy one. but I have not done so yet. I have no other conflicts of interest.
  7. I am planning to purchase a 10-13 year old CT** in the next 12 months. I have no mechanical talents. I plan to ask Roger to do the annuals, although I also need a local solution for the unforeseen. (I am in SoCal). unfortunately, I will also need to store the airplane outdoors. Airport hangars near me cost $800-$1,200/month, while outdoor tie-downs cost $100/month. I will need to wrap the airplane in a Bruce condom, ask Roger to seal it once a year as good as possible, and hope for the best. could someone help me put together a to-be-expected cost schedule? every 6 years: parachute. (installed) cost: every 12 years: parachute and rocket. (installed) cost: every 5 years: rotax rubber replacement, incl engine mounts. (installed) cost: every 1 year: annual. (completed) cost with average issues: (seal for outdoor storage?) what else? plus standard stuff, from gas to filters to oil to ... sincerely, /iaw
  8. thanks. I will probably follow the advice---yes, to reasonable flight training in non-IMC; and no IFR flying in IMC. I believe the GNC 255 provides the NAV radio, if installed. presumably, it is coupled to the dynon. but I would want to get away from VORs anyway, and learn good GPS approaches. after all, it is 2018. interestingly, tim busch's ct is listed on the website as having a GNS430. does anyone have a photograph of the cockpit? is it legal/easy to push one into the panel? I am thinking buying a used 430 non-WAAS, because I will only be flying pretend-IFR, anyway. then again, probably not worth it once installation cost is figured in, either. PS: Don't the Canadians have something that allows punching through clouds on takeoff with an extra endorsement? Or was I completely wrong here, too?
  9. "be careful about purposefully flying into IMC" --- IFR flying would be very rarely my intent. I am thinking "like 10 seconds through a low cloud layer: on takeoff. the Canadians call it VFR-OTT. but in the US, this is only allowed with a full IFR license, so this is what I would need to get. and, then again, learning new skills is fun in itself, but this I can do in non-IMC, anyway. on the Rotax engine, here is one quote I found: "An example of operating instructions is a SLSA equipped with a Rotax engine. Rotax's operating instructions prohibit the use of a Rotax engine at night or in IFR conditions unless it is the FAA type certificated engine (14 CFR part 33)." I am not too worried about redundancy in IMC. the new Dynon glass equipment is far less dangerous than the old steam gauges (please try to figure out when you have a slow vacuum failure while trying to navigate at the sam time....ugggh...this is a lot harder than the instructor covering one steam instrument on purpose) moreover, I know I can fly and navigate perfectly fine with just one [non-IFR] aviation GPS *and* find my way to an airport and around mountains. I don't want to do this (it's not legal either), but if push-comes-to-shove, as a backup, this is not going to get me killed. but, back to the original question---feasible? anyone done it?
  10. Dear FD pilots---I plan to purchase a used (probably <2010) FD with dual Dynons in fall. I would not mind getting an IFR certification, mostly for fun. I already have a valid PPL and 3rd class medical. I understand IFR in non-IMC is allowed. It would be twice as nice if I could punch through a low cloud-layer on takeoff with this. Never hard IFR for me. Has someone converted the FD from LSA to ELSA for this purpose? (yes, transponder and pitot check needed.) I would always get it maintained by someone professional, so maintenance cost is not a concern. Has anyone gotten their training *and* checkride in their FD? If yes, the FD does not have an IFR GPS built in. So, what approaches can one legally fly IFR, given ELSA, checks, etc? /iaw
  11. iaw4

    Parachute Recommendation

    it does not have to be finite and can be by pilot, because it is not an FAA legal issue anyway. but think about why there is a good reason for the existence of an IFR decision altitude: you have time to decide until you get there *before* you need to decide. especially when the engine quits and I am still high, I want to know *when* I have a decision to make. I want to know a good decision altitude (envelope) in my mind. can I delay it down to 400'? 200'? 100'?
  12. iaw4

    Parachute Recommendation

    Good information. [1] where does the 40% death chance come from? if the 60% is mostly from bad terrain below, and I am not in this situation, then pulling may not be ideal. (frankly, I don't 100% trust it, either.) . if the 60% applies even for seemingly good terrain (golf course? sports field? empty road? road with low traffic and lots of spacing?), then I better pull sooner rather than later. [2] we do need to get a good estimate of the (graphical) envelope for a good pull. I presume that if I am in a good flight attitude at 50 knots, 200' altitude, but I realize that it is not good ahead of me, a pull would still work. if I am in a spin at 120 knots, 200' altitude, I can kiss my butt goodbye. this is a bad guess, BUT knowing this is *very* important, because it will help me to decide when to pull and when not to pull. this is especially relevant with respect to [1]. if I have good control of the airplane and the engine went out, I am still at 1000' AGL, and I am not in bad terrain (mountains) but I see a nice golf course below me (yes, I understand a golf balls could hit me), then my choice (descend first, decide later; vs pull immediately) will depend on the viable envelope. I need the equivalent of an IFR decision point. /iaw
  13. [new owner, N86FT] I believe (but I am not certain) that there was only one parachute pull in a Flight Design so far. (This comes from looking at old messages on this board.) . Please correct me if I am wrong. Cirrus changed it's training methods to suggest "if in doubt, immediately pull the parachute"---pull early and often. It's almost "if the engine goes out and you are not over an airport, just pull." https://www.aopa.org/news-and-media/all-news/2016/july/24/how-cirrus-reduced-accidents there are some obvious scenarios for a pull (hostile territory and the engine goes out, etc.) and some obvious scenarios for landing (you are high in the pattern and were practicing engine-out landings anyways). unlike the Cirrus, we do not have much evidence for outcomes with parachute pulls, either, so there is an extra uncertainty factor for FDs. has FD offered some more guidance on when to pull? should I follow the old or the new Cirrus approach. /iaw