Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 50

Thread: New Pilot - Researching Options

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    5

    Default New Pilot - Researching Options

    New private pilot here (student pilot, actually). I got into flying mostly for hobby and am looking into options once I get my PPL. Are there flying clubs around Anchorage? I sent an email to the Alaska Star Flying Club last week. I found the Elmendorf Aero Club but don't have access to base. Any other options? Not looking to buy anything yet and would appreciate the opportunity to chat and fly with other knowledgeable pilots in the area.

  2. #2

    Default

    I never did the flying club thing, it was just easier to finish my ppl at land and sea aviation. Their online scheduler is gold. I can only guess that in a flying club everyone is going to be fighting over who gets to fly the plane on the nice summer days. There are also issues over who pays more for mx activities or other costs associated with the aircraft, what if someone wants some upgrades and the others don't, etc, etc. It can all be managed but from what I could tell of these flying clubs its not like they had a book keeper or a front desk girl to do these things and there are too many cantancorus antagnonistic people in aviation for me to want to have my affairs that tightly wound with others. Plus when you want out its like trying to sell a time share.

    I mean I guess I get it for people that really really want to fly and who will never have anywhere close to enough money to buy a plane in the future but its not without aggravation.

    Quote Originally Posted by DonGillie View Post
    New private pilot here (student pilot, actually). I got into flying mostly for hobby and am looking into options once I get my PPL. Are there flying clubs around Anchorage? I sent an email to the Alaska Star Flying Club last week. I found the Elmendorf Aero Club but don't have access to base. Any other options? Not looking to buy anything yet and would appreciate the opportunity to chat and fly with other knowledgeable pilots in the area.

  3. #3
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    5

    Default

    I'm am working to finish up my PPL at L&SA, just trying to think of what I want to do after. I'm not sure if I will be flying enough to really warrant purchasing my own aircraft, but I don't have a good handle on what that would actually cost.

  4. #4

    Default

    Flying clubs can be a great way to fly for relatively cheap. One can be involved as much or as little as they have time/interest. I was a member of the Knik Flying Club (Birchwood based club) for many years and selling my share was relatively easy. Availability was never an issue as this club had 2 7GCBC's, and I flew whenever I wanted. I actually sold my share there a few years back and bought into a float plane partnership that I have found to be as enjoyable.

    Don't let others scare you away from that option. Everybody has different experiences and opinions. Keep asking questions, researching and explore all possibilities.

    Good luck!

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    FAI
    Posts
    2,294

    Default

    Years ago I used a flying club. I'd be careful about buying block time, but other than that, it worked out well for me. I was willing to fly a lot when others weren't interested. I got caught in buying block time and not using it quickly. When the club closed, I lost quite a few flight hours. My bad for not paying attention, and flying off the time. If I were going to do it again, I'd only buy block time (if available, and cheaper) if I were doing cross country flights that would use it same day or weekend.
    Other than that, find that cheap but solid time builder that can be a hoot to fly for little money. Maintain it, use it, build time, then sell it when you want to "grow" into another airframe.
    ARR

  6. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    northern alaska
    Posts
    1,159

    Default

    First thing you learn on this site is rppearso is pretty down on aviation...not sure why he got involved in it... But don't really care....

    DonGillie, what you get out of aviation is directly proportional to what you put into it. If you get your PPL and never pursue owning an airplane, you will probably be one of the many who have a license but let it lapse for lack of interest. Why are you pursuing this hobby?

  7. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    5

    Default

    I occasionally work out of town and end up taking some little plane out to some little village for a day or two. I've always loved taking those trips and wanted to find a way to be able to do that on my own. I have considered getting my PPL for a long time but had other priorities getting my degree and my professional license (and student loans!). I got my professional license and paid off my student loans and wanted to take a stab at flying. I'm not opposed to buying, there is just so much that I don't right now that it seems that buying a plane and going off on my own might not be the smartest decision.

    There is the option of going in an aircraft with a group of people, but I'd want to know the people I was getting involved with first and I don't know many personally.

  8. #8

    Default

    I suppose the nice thing would be dividing up the mx costs and not having to deal with it. The bad part is not having to deal with it. I want to know every nut and bolt in the plane I am flying in because I have seen too many mechanics screw up and end up with an oil leak or elevator hinges that were not fixed property etc. Just because a mechanic signs it off does not mean its done right or safe. You need to make sure you know all the AD's STC's etc. But that also means someone else is dealing with the logistics of getting it in and done. If you don't need a hangar and its just on a tie down and someone else is dealing with the snow and checking it when there is high wind then it might be a good deal.

    People dislike me because I like to take care of my stuff and do stuff right BUT I don't want to empty my 401k just to do it. So if you can avoid all that stuff by being only a fractional owner then its great. When you are a full owner you have to deal with all that stuff and if your anal about your plane being hangared THAT is where things in aviation get crappy. There is VERY little hangar space in south central and any of it on a real air strip is EXPENSIVE. You will notice that choice hangar space and even tie downs at convient airports are tight, it is super aggravating.

    I am hoping that the hangar market along with the housing market takes a big hit as these arrogant contractors (some who have hangars at various airports) start feeling the pinch from oil and gas.

    Quote Originally Posted by DonGillie View Post
    I occasionally work out of town and end up taking some little plane out to some little village for a day or two. I've always loved taking those trips and wanted to find a way to be able to do that on my own. I have considered getting my PPL for a long time but had other priorities getting my degree and my professional license (and student loans!). I got my professional license and paid off my student loans and wanted to take a stab at flying. I'm not opposed to buying, there is just so much that I don't right now that it seems that buying a plane and going off on my own might not be the smartest decision.

    There is the option of going in an aircraft with a group of people, but I'd want to know the people I was getting involved with first and I don't know many personally.

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    951

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rppearso View Post
    People dislike me because I like to take care of my stuff and do stuff right
    Umm, no, that's not the reason.

  10. #10
    Member AK-HUNT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Valley
    Posts
    1,029

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by NRick View Post
    Umm, no, that's not the reason.
    Not even on the top 10.

  11. #11

    Default

    Anything you do to ensure dedicated access to aircraft will result in more flying. You will fly more if you are part of a flight club than if you have to rent from L&S. You will fly even more if you own your own aircraft. SO LONG AS...you don't buy so much airplane that you are in debt and can't afford to fly it.

    So...unless you have the income to support an expensive airplane...get an inexpensive airplane and fly the wings off.
    14 Days to Alaska
    Also available on Kindle and Nook

  12. #12

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ak River Rat View Post
    find that cheap but solid time builder that can be a hoot to fly for little money. Maintain it, use it, build time, then sell it when you want to "grow" into another airframe.
    ARR
    I wasn't sure what I really wanted out of aviation, but knew I did not want to by a 180 or Supercub and not be able to fly as often as I wanted due to maintenance and fuel costs or share a plane. I bought a J3 and got my Sport Pilot and it has been great, you learn the plane, it's always available, it burns less than 5 gal an hour (really cheap with an auto gas etc), it can go anywhere you want as a new pilot. Downsides? It's slow and can't carry much, but building time I knew I would be flying alone most of the time. I think its a great way to go. Lots of good planes in $20-$40 range

  13. #13

    Default

    First you're down on other pilots , now "arrogant" contractors.. you are such a ass it is hard to comprehend. You state you are a engineer or something of the sort... Just another over priced necessity in life, but we all deal with it and move on.

    I truly have never come across such a bitter and condescending individual in my life and I hope to heck I never meet you in person.

    I am quite sure the mods will take exception to my post and I could not care less. I am tired of there tolerance of your posts and if they can tolerate you, they sure as heck should tolerate this post.

    Don, welcome to the fun of flying. I wish you the strength to look the other way when you see a post from rppearso.. he is truly the optima of a downer..

    Tom

    Quote Originally Posted by rppearso View Post
    I suppose the nice thing would be dividing up the mx costs and not having to deal with it. The bad part is not having to deal with it. I want to know every nut and bolt in the plane I am flying in because I have seen too many mechanics screw up and end up with an oil leak or elevator hinges that were not fixed property etc. Just because a mechanic signs it off does not mean its done right or safe. You need to make sure you know all the AD's STC's etc. But that also means someone else is dealing with the logistics of getting it in and done. If you don't need a hangar and its just on a tie down and someone else is dealing with the snow and checking it when there is high wind then it might be a good deal.

    People dislike me because I like to take care of my stuff and do stuff right BUT I don't want to empty my 401k just to do it. So if you can avoid all that stuff by being only a fractional owner then its great. When you are a full owner you have to deal with all that stuff and if your anal about your plane being hangared THAT is where things in aviation get crappy. There is VERY little hangar space in south central and any of it on a real air strip is EXPENSIVE. You will notice that choice hangar space and even tie downs at convient airports are tight, it is super aggravating.

    I am hoping that the hangar market along with the housing market takes a big hit as these arrogant contractors (some who have hangars at various airports) start feeling the pinch from oil and gas.

  14. #14
    Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Wasilla, Alaska
    Posts
    33

    Default

    I just got my PPL this year and am now around 95hrs and we bought a '46 Aeronca Champ. It has been the perfect cheap to fly, reliable, time builder. Ours had the Buzz Wagner STC so its got the O-235 in it. Yes, I am already looking at something that can carry a little more weight but for being a solid time builder right now, we couldn't be happier with our bird. If you do look at your own plane, don't buy a cheaper one that is a little rough around the edges unless you really have an interest in rebuilding it with an A&P and access to an A&P. We spend around 25 on ours and it was in good/great shape. I can say we have certainly spent less than we would've in a flying club, other than the initial cost of the plane, which we have on a loan right now. (Cars are all owned outright so we can afford to do that) Personally I prefer it as I know exactly what happens with my plane, and I have every flight notated in a log book. Additionally, there has never been a scheduling issue when I want to use it. 😉 Good luck with your PPL and feel free to PM with any questions as you're going through the process since like I said, I just went through the whole process.

  15. #15
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Los Anchorage
    Posts
    314

    Default

    Ok: Full Disclosure and some comments;

    - I work for an Oil E&P Company (based in Texas, not AK); I want to get a home built in Anchorage, so I hope the real estate and construction prices go down; I want my stock to be worth something so I hope oil prices go back up.
    - Born & raised in AK, so even with the present sojourn to TX, have more AK time (and interests) than many recent transplants; Lived in AK long enough to know that: a) It ain't the state I grew up in; b) the state currently lives (rightly or wrongly) on oil $$; and c) While AK shouldn't live on oil $$, I don't know if we have the stones to hold on for a correction.
    - I own a hangar in Los Anchorage; paid cash for it 'cause I worked my butt off for the nasty oil company and was paid accordingly....someone can sue me if they want; I also own something over 150 acres scattered around the state that was paid in cash because I worked by butt off as a contractor and employee of the oil company(ies) and was paid accordingly....someone can sue me if they want.
    - I first got my PPL in '84. Had experience with straight rental, block time rental, "timeshare", and a flying club.
    - None of the above comes close to the experience of owning your own bird. Period.
    - You don't need a Valdez winner or a lodge support aircraft for your first (or only) plane. I suspect, don't know, but suspect that a good number of the non-professional pilots can't fly as good as their aircraft can. I know I fall into that boat and always have. Perhaps in another 8 - 15 months when I pull the plug for good, I can work on reversing that.
    - A quick look through various sources reveals that there's lots of bargains out there to be had. FWIW, although some time back, I bought the -12 for just over $20k, and that was with half the cost of an annual. Rough around the edges, colder than you-know-what in the winter, no flaps, but airworthy and an absolute joy to fly and the darn near perfect timebuilder. Worked for me for several years until it underwent a thorough rebuild...thanks again to the nasty oil company!
    - For Alaska, an -18 with the right mods (but not too many of them) is the holy grail....so an -18 (even less than perfect) carries a premium. Look at -12's (yes I'm partial), Aeronca's, Citabria's, 170's, 172's...much beyond that and it's the wrong spot on the cheap-to-by; cheap-to-own scale.
    - As mentioned a time or two above, get something that is airworthy and flyable NOW...don't plan on working on it right away;
    - Above all, don't get something that requires too many $$ or too much work to get out frequently and enjoy. Alaska is littered with folks that (for whatever valid reasons) have had to give up flying....don't let your first A/C purchase become a reason for that.
    - Leaving aside family, there is nothing (IMNSHO) that is quite as value-adding to life as flying in AK; don't let any bad attitudes infringe on your pursuit of your PPL and a plane.

  16. #16

    Default

    Because they buy up a bunch of real estate and strain the market for the rest of pilots. Cruz construction built a giant monstrosity on palmer airport, I called them up about rental space and they "weren't interested". You get people throwing around money and the local muni airports think geez maybe we can get 7 cents a sq ft now that we are on the gravy train, heck lets set up a one, two, three acre minimum (or Merrils 375k minimum investment). I started off like the OP until I realized it was nearly impossible to get hangar space without selling a kidney. The pilot community is kind of like I got mine and F everyone else but they want hopefuls on the side lines trying to get in.

    I was reading what some of the lease holders at birchwood did to the ultra light community, they treat govt property like its their own private club.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cresent Hills View Post
    First you're down on other pilots , now "arrogant" contractors.. you are such a ass it is hard to comprehend. You state you are a engineer or something of the sort... Just another over priced necessity in life, but we all deal with it and move on.

    I truly have never come across such a bitter and condescending individual in my life and I hope to heck I never meet you in person.

    I am quite sure the mods will take exception to my post and I could not care less. I am tired of there tolerance of your posts and if they can tolerate you, they sure as heck should tolerate this post.

    Don, welcome to the fun of flying. I wish you the strength to look the other way when you see a post from rppearso.. he is truly the optima of a downer..

    Tom

  17. #17

    Default

    I would have to sell arms to foreign nations to buy a hangar at Merrill and that much acreage around the state at todays rates. Good for you, you got in when the getting was good and there was raw lease land and you were not compelled to hire contractors that wanted 5 figures to dig a hole because the munis are now requiring licensing and bonding. A lot of us were not born when there were good jobs at the same time property was relatively cheap. BTW I love oil companies I hate the contractors that try to fleece to the nth degree and create conditions for massive lay offs and wild price swings for everything in Alaska. I am just waiting for places like Cruz to fold so that the little guys can experience what you did, to actually be able to have a hangar and some land by working hard and not have to be a multi millionaire to do it.

    I am sorry I come off as an ass but the situation is truly frustrating but the market is correcting so that's something to look forward too. But I am also not going to be nice about it because a lot of these contract companies and lease holders are antagonistic to new pilots and aircraft owners. They have already proven that most of them are not willing to help so why should I feel bad if I roast a marshmallow over their business when its in flames.

    Quote Originally Posted by pa12drvr View Post
    Ok: Full Disclosure and some comments;

    - I work for an Oil E&P Company (based in Texas, not AK); I want to get a home built in Anchorage, so I hope the real estate and construction prices go down; I want my stock to be worth something so I hope oil prices go back up.
    - Born & raised in AK, so even with the present sojourn to TX, have more AK time (and interests) than many recent transplants; Lived in AK long enough to know that: a) It ain't the state I grew up in; b) the state currently lives (rightly or wrongly) on oil $$; and c) While AK shouldn't live on oil $$, I don't know if we have the stones to hold on for a correction.
    - I own a hangar in Los Anchorage; paid cash for it 'cause I worked my butt off for the nasty oil company and was paid accordingly....someone can sue me if they want; I also own something over 150 acres scattered around the state that was paid in cash because I worked by butt off as a contractor and employee of the oil company(ies) and was paid accordingly....someone can sue me if they want.
    - I first got my PPL in '84. Had experience with straight rental, block time rental, "timeshare", and a flying club.
    - None of the above comes close to the experience of owning your own bird. Period.
    - You don't need a Valdez winner or a lodge support aircraft for your first (or only) plane. I suspect, don't know, but suspect that a good number of the non-professional pilots can't fly as good as their aircraft can. I know I fall into that boat and always have. Perhaps in another 8 - 15 months when I pull the plug for good, I can work on reversing that.
    - A quick look through various sources reveals that there's lots of bargains out there to be had. FWIW, although some time back, I bought the -12 for just over $20k, and that was with half the cost of an annual. Rough around the edges, colder than you-know-what in the winter, no flaps, but airworthy and an absolute joy to fly and the darn near perfect timebuilder. Worked for me for several years until it underwent a thorough rebuild...thanks again to the nasty oil company!
    - For Alaska, an -18 with the right mods (but not too many of them) is the holy grail....so an -18 (even less than perfect) carries a premium. Look at -12's (yes I'm partial), Aeronca's, Citabria's, 170's, 172's...much beyond that and it's the wrong spot on the cheap-to-by; cheap-to-own scale.
    - As mentioned a time or two above, get something that is airworthy and flyable NOW...don't plan on working on it right away;
    - Above all, don't get something that requires too many $$ or too much work to get out frequently and enjoy. Alaska is littered with folks that (for whatever valid reasons) have had to give up flying....don't let your first A/C purchase become a reason for that.
    - Leaving aside family, there is nothing (IMNSHO) that is quite as value-adding to life as flying in AK; don't let any bad attitudes infringe on your pursuit of your PPL and a plane.

  18. #18

    Default

    We can always count on the cheerfull observations of rppearso

  19. #19

    Default

    they are public service announcemnts. I have done ALOT of homework so new pilots can know the real deal. Sorry I don't sugar coat it. Or pour over the proper words to make a pile of dung situation sound better.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bearsnack View Post
    We can always count on the cheerfull observations of rppearso

  20. #20
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Los Anchorage
    Posts
    314

    Default

    To the OP: I bought my -12 (as mentioned above) when I had two kids and a mortgage and my old man living with the wife and I. Send a PM if you would like more thoughts on pursuing a/c ownership....and some more insights on owning a plane in Southcentral without a hangar; as I did for 10+ years and as many people do now without grousing.

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •