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Thread: Experemental aircraft

  1. #1

    Default Experemental aircraft

    Is it possible to get a certified plane downgraded to experemental so that the owner can do their own overhauls and other major maintence without an A&P cert?

  2. #2

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    It used to be somewhat possible, in that if you completely took and airplane apart, modified it in the rebuild process, documented it appropriately, and jumped through the proper hoops along the way, you could get an experimental airplane that was constructed largely of certified parts or modified certified parts. The FAA has clamped down on that approach, and now will not issue an airworthiness certificate for airplanes that fit that description. I was sorry to see this get more restricted, as it seems like we get continually more restrictions, often with little benefit to anybody. However, I am starting to see how they might be forced into being restrictive when people do things like this not because they are trying to make a better aircraft, but primarily because they think they can do things cheaper. I suspect that line of reasoning has led to some interesting accident investigations.

    In any case, it has never been possible to get an airframe 'downgraded' to experimental. In order to get an experimental airworthiness certificate for an airplane, it has always required a complete and extensive build process, but people used to be able to use parts of certified airframes in that process.

    If you are focused on the cost of ownership, it starts with the amount you pay for the airframe and engine in equivalent (or as near equivalent as possible) condition. The least expensive is usually the older airframes. The most expensive is a factory new airframe. Building your own aircraft is somewhat less expensive than buying factory new, but much more expensive than a quality older airframe. And it takes a lot of time.

  3. #3
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    No, you cannot do what you want to do. There are other options, but they'd cost far more than just using an A&P to do the work.
    Bunny Boots and Bearcats: Utility Sled Mayhem

  4. #4

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    Yea, I am going to talk to an advisor about starting an A&P program but will probably buy a pitts before I finish the program since I will just be doing it one or 2 courses at a time while I work full time. My fear is the risk of being exposed to having annuals done without having the cert and being exploited. Oh well theres this and this that should be done (even though it does not absolutly need to be done) and I wont sign you off until you do this bigilliion dollars worth of work. If I could just fly and do my 1000$ annual once a year until I finish my A&P that would be great but it would suck to be grounded paying hangar rent for a plane I cant fly because I cant get the airworthyness cert. That would be aweful. I might be looking for a nice grass strip that I could land a pitts at so that way I could fly without an air worthieness cert from a private air field and put up no tresspassing signs.

    Of course there are probably alot of AI's so I could just shop around until I found one that would be reasonable. Sorry its just frutrating when the gov forces someone to do buissness that they would not ordinarily do. Kinda like we are all going to be doing with health care pretty soon here.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Troy Hamon View Post
    It used to be somewhat possible, in that if you completely took and airplane apart, modified it in the rebuild process, documented it appropriately, and jumped through the proper hoops along the way, you could get an experimental airplane that was constructed largely of certified parts or modified certified parts. The FAA has clamped down on that approach, and now will not issue an airworthiness certificate for airplanes that fit that description. I was sorry to see this get more restricted, as it seems like we get continually more restrictions, often with little benefit to anybody. However, I am starting to see how they might be forced into being restrictive when people do things like this not because they are trying to make a better aircraft, but primarily because they think they can do things cheaper. I suspect that line of reasoning has led to some interesting accident investigations.

    In any case, it has never been possible to get an airframe 'downgraded' to experimental. In order to get an experimental airworthiness certificate for an airplane, it has always required a complete and extensive build process, but people used to be able to use parts of certified airframes in that process.

    If you are focused on the cost of ownership, it starts with the amount you pay for the airframe and engine in equivalent (or as near equivalent as possible) condition. The least expensive is usually the older airframes. The most expensive is a factory new airframe. Building your own aircraft is somewhat less expensive than buying factory new, but much more expensive than a quality older airframe. And it takes a lot of time.
    Cost is king, I know plenty of people that are tired of the inflated costs of aviation, im sure they would not have had those accidents if they simply allowed them to down grade their status without a complete rebuild of the airframe, because serioulsy they "time" these things out WAY before they actually need to be fixed and they should not be imposing A&P requirements to do ANY work if you are flying for recreation and not carrying passengers for hire. The whole thing is a cash grab and thats the problems people have. You have to have a pilots licence, A&P and an AI just to fly a super cub and do your own work on it so your not reliant to being forced to hire someone that you really dont want to just to stay legal.

    I will probably call around to alot of places and see what a typical annual costs and go from there, may wait to buy the plane until I have my A&P/AI if the costs are going to be out of control. Or I may need a new hobbie lol.

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    There are a whole bunch of pilot/A&P/IA's out there, they all managed to somehow get all these ratings and licenses and buy an airplane.....so what is wrong with you rppearso? You're not up to the task? You need to quit talking and start doing....come back here when you know something....when you can say something that is at least spoken from experience....In the mean time just go away and quit wasting our time.....thank you and good riddance........

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    Quote Originally Posted by pipercub View Post
    There are a whole bunch of pilot/A&P/IA's out there, they all managed to somehow get all these ratings and licenses and buy an airplane.....so what is wrong with you rppearso? You're not up to the task? You need to quit talking and start doing....come back here when you know something....when you can say something that is at least spoken from experience....In the mean time just go away and quit wasting our time.....thank you and good riddance........
    He just continues his "behavior" that he has shown in the past. Ask a question.........be given the answer several times and then just re ask the question over and over again. Also has a excuse for any fault/problem pointed out.....a disaster waiting to happen.

    +1

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    Go to the right side of the upper heading and select "settings". In the left margin find and select "edit ignore list". Type rppearso in the box and hit okay. Problem solved.

  9. #9

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    What planet is this guy from? He is hilarious.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by pipercub View Post
    There are a whole bunch of pilot/A&P/IA's out there, they all managed to somehow get all these ratings and licenses and buy an airplane.....so what is wrong with you rppearso? You're not up to the task? You need to quit talking and start doing....come back here when you know something....when you can say something that is at least spoken from experience....In the mean time just go away and quit wasting our time.....thank you and good riddance........
    I would have actually respected this post up until the good ridance part. I am going in today to talk to an advisor about the A&P program, will come back when I have the A&P in hand.

  11. #11
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    And old FAA inspector friend of mine told me that the FAR's as they were at the time 1976 told me when I asked the question as why they were the way the were and are at the time. I was taking my first 6mo check after my initial 135 IFR ride, about how you needed to be almost a lawyer to understand the regs. He told me that all you have to know about why the regs are there is because they are written in blood. Accidents made the regulations we have . Then he went on to explain how FAR-135 The Air Taxi rules came about. Airplanes are not cheap, they never were, nor are they cheap to operate , or cheap to just let sit, more so in Alaska. Operating costs depends on were you live, while I would not keep an airplane out side, Its not an option for many. There are things you can do with out and A+P and then there are stuff you can do under supervision. Finding a good A+P and Shop to have work done is just one of those things. Sort of like finding a good Gunsmith, few and far between. So many different kinds of aircraft around it can be a hard task. Its doable. A guy that is aces with fabric my not be the guy to work on metal skin. A top guy on piston engines may not be the guy for that turbine. Or when it comes to radio's that is a whole area of expertise. Prices are what they are due to the fact that is a really small industry when you get right down to it, here in CT they are billing 105 and hour to work on a car. The automotive industry is huge is size and scope. In economics its called economics of scale. Becoming an A+P then an AI take a good bit of time and effort, like flying for a living,its a tough road. And then there is the making a living part of it. You are really paying for expertise, like anything else in life, the good ones bill for there time. Just like a good eye surgeon. You forget about what that might have cost, when the doctor restores you eye sight to better than good and you can keep flying for a living. I know about that too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by goosepilot View Post
    What planet is this guy from? He is hilarious.
    Don't know, but wherever it is, he can see the road to Pt. Barrow from there . . . . .

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by BH206L3 View Post
    And old FAA inspector friend of mine told me that the FAR's as they were at the time 1976 told me when I asked the question as why they were the way the were and are at the time. I was taking my first 6mo check after my initial 135 IFR ride, about how you needed to be almost a lawyer to understand the regs. He told me that all you have to know about why the regs are there is because they are written in blood. Accidents made the regulations we have . Then he went on to explain how FAR-135 The Air Taxi rules came about. Airplanes are not cheap, they never were, nor are they cheap to operate , or cheap to just let sit, more so in Alaska. Operating costs depends on were you live, while I would not keep an airplane out side, Its not an option for many. There are things you can do with out and A+P and then there are stuff you can do under supervision. Finding a good A+P and Shop to have work done is just one of those things. Sort of like finding a good Gunsmith, few and far between. So many different kinds of aircraft around it can be a hard task. Its doable. A guy that is aces with fabric my not be the guy to work on metal skin. A top guy on piston engines may not be the guy for that turbine. Or when it comes to radio's that is a whole area of expertise. Prices are what they are due to the fact that is a really small industry when you get right down to it, here in CT they are billing 105 and hour to work on a car. The automotive industry is huge is size and scope. In economics its called economics of scale. Becoming an A+P then an AI take a good bit of time and effort, like flying for a living,its a tough road. And then there is the making a living part of it. You are really paying for expertise, like anything else in life, the good ones bill for there time. Just like a good eye surgeon. You forget about what that might have cost, when the doctor restores you eye sight to better than good and you can keep flying for a living. I know about that too.
    The thing is I can buy a manual and work on my own car if I REALLY REALLY wanted to without special licnecing. With the AI the gov is mandating that I do buisness with a particular set of individuals, its basicly like a gov created monopoly market. Same thing with medical services, insurance companies prevent fair pricing of medical services. If medical insurance did not exist there would not be enough rich people to keep all the doctors bill rates out into space so the prices would change.

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