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Viability of G3 vs G4

Old 3rd Aug 2018, 12:41
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Falcon 2000 series?
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Old 3rd Aug 2018, 12:52
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Originally Posted by 340drvr
Falcon 2000 series?
Little over his budget, no? Plus, does he want to pay for three engines?
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Old 3rd Aug 2018, 13:09
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Originally Posted by flyboyike
Little over his budget, no? Plus, does he want to pay for three engines?
Well it will probably cost him a lot if he wants a third engine installed.
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Old 3rd Aug 2018, 14:27
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Love the Falcon 2000 but less range than a G200 and about $500/hr more expensive to operate than a G200. Although you can get a decent early SN Falcon 2000 with 6-8k hours for like $4M. If the wife objects to the cabin of the G200, the Falcon 2000 will also provide a larger cabin experience as well but still only 2 zones...

G450 you're going to be shelling out ballpark $10M minimum for a decent early SN on programs.
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Old 3rd Aug 2018, 15:19
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Originally Posted by givdrvr
Having personal experience with what you are proposing, I suggest you compare monthly cost with aircraft basing at CRQ vs SNA.
Palomar airport keeps on coming up. People love this place. Why? I have no objection to it, it's a little further but not by much.
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Old 3rd Aug 2018, 15:26
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Originally Posted by Dont worry
@ Catorce14
If I where you, I would try to put a little more money on the table to get a nice GivSP or maybe even a G450. Also a Challenger 605 would do it. The early ones are quiet ok pricewise at the moment.
Concerning the Range, both aircraft will do approximately the same. A decent range to plan for the 605 is around 3800NM depending on the wind.
Go for a european aircraft as most of them comply with the upcoming regulations already and you dont have to spend additional money to upgrade for ADSB-in/out, FANS A-1 and so on.
According to my experience most of the US aircraft need to undergo this refitting and upgrade to comply with the new regs. Maybe a point to push the price. Your choice.
All the aircraft my previous company sold, went to the US and Mexico.
Just my 5 cents.
Enjoy looking for and flying in your new toy.
I have seen the IVSP for sale, occasionally one dips into a range slightly higher but not much more than I want to spend. Nice plane, so is the Challenger......

Excellent point about Euro jets, sometimes I forget these planes can go anywhere so it doesn't matter where they are listed for sale so much....
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Old 3rd Aug 2018, 20:06
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From Experience

Originally Posted by Catorce14
Thanks for the feedback. Truthfully, and I may be dreaming here, I want to buy the plane and spend ~500K per year on keeping and maintaining it. For me, it will be a tax benefit.

Probably chartering or fractional makes more sense, but I can't stomach renting something. I also want to go when I want to go, and to wherever. I will admit it is a bit of a fantasy but that is the mandate of this mission.

As to resale, isn't a 1.x million GIII or 2.x million GIV almost fully depreciated at this point?

Also, I know exactly the square root of jack shyte when it comes to plane maintenance, so my sales / management guy will steer the inspection to make sure I am getting something good.
Having operated a GIII and a G-450, I can tell you that $500K per year will not come close to covering your annual expenses, even at only 100 hours per year. Especially in Europe.
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Old 3rd Aug 2018, 21:21
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Originally Posted by Old Boeing Driver
Having operated a GIII and a G-450, I can tell you that $500K per year will not come close to covering your annual expenses, even at only 100 hours per year. Especially in Europe.
Good to know, I am thankful for the response. The reason I picked 500K is that is where the expense ceases to be worth it to me. I figured I'd do it if I could buy the plane for less than 3M and then pay 500K per year for 100-150 hours.

If in fact I can't do that, then it's not worth it to me.

But I am interested - please tell me more - what would be a reasonable number?
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Old 3rd Aug 2018, 23:14
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100 hours? I would guess 1.1M minimum annually with no cabin attendant and no charter income. The annual fixed costs alone will exceed 600K before the aircraft ever departs the hangar. The lower your initial acquisition cost the higher this number is likely to be due to increased maintenance on older model/higher hour airframe. The majority of older aircraft present false economy IMHO. Unless you can write a six figure check for unplanned mx events, possibly several times a year, without wincing this game is not for you.
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Old 3rd Aug 2018, 23:26
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Originally Posted by givdrvr
100 hours? I would guess 1.1M minimum annually with no cabin attendant and no charter income. The annual fixed costs alone will exceed 600K before the aircraft ever departs the hangar. The lower your initial acquisition cost the higher this number is likely to be due to increased maintenance on older model/higher hour airframe. The majority of older aircraft present false economy IMHO. Unless you can write a six figure check for unplanned mx events, possibly several times a year, without wincing this game is not for you.
Good enough, so my Aircraft management guy was right. Not really feasible without 25-35 hours of part 135 work every month.......correct?
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Old 4th Aug 2018, 07:55
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Originally Posted by Catorce14
Thanks for the feedback. Truthfully, and I may be dreaming here, I want to buy the plane and spend ~500K per year on keeping and maintaining it. For me, it will be a tax benefit.

Probably chartering or fractional makes more sense, but I can't stomach renting something. I also want to go when I want to go, and to wherever. I will admit it is a bit of a fantasy but that is the mandate of this mission.

As to resale, isn't a 1.x million GIII or 2.x million GIV almost fully depreciated at this point?

Also, I know exactly the square root of jack shyte when it comes to plane maintenance, so my sales / management guy will steer the inspection to make sure I am getting something good.
Originally Posted by Old Boeing Driver [img]images/buttons/viewpost.gif[/img]
Having operated a GIII and a G-450, I can tell you that $500K per year will not come close to covering your annual expenses, even at only 100 hours per year. Especially in Europe.
Good to know, I am thankful for the response. The reason I picked 500K is that is where the expense ceases to be worth it to me. I figured I'd do it if I could buy the plane for less than 3M and then pay 500K per year for 100-150 hours.

If in fact I can't do that, then it's not worth it to me.
Short answer: You can't. Flying 150 hrs per year, you'll spend $400K of your $500K budget just putting fuel in the tanks at current prices, more if you operate between the coastal big cities. Including salaries for minimal (2) crew, owning/operating your own G-III or G-IV 100-150 hrs will run you between $1 to $1.5 million per year. At least $250K per year will be for maintenance, even if your guy finds you one that never gives you any heart-stopping surprises during subsequent inspections.

The "mandate of your mission" as you've laid out (max 500K, 100-150 hours, 1 int'l trip per year, go whenever you want to wherever) is exactly the niche the fractional scheme is aimed-at and has been successful catering to. Same for charter. People have long-tried to operate their own private jets on a shoestring budget tempted by low acquisition cost and it doesn't work for long. In the end, these attempts produce shell-shocked owners (when ALL the operating costs/bills roll in) and the old, barely-serviceable aircraft becomes "always for sale", flown only occasionally by the cheapest, least-qualified and least-current crew one can find until the day they're put on the street. If someone else harboring the same "low-acquisition cost buys a lot of fuel" notion it can potentially be unloaded on, the pre-buy inspection inevitably turns up more issues on the cheaply-maintained aircraft. It's been tried, tried, and tried before in the name of someone wanting to refer to an aircraft as "My Gulfstream" (or whatever other type they over-extended for). Eventually, they give one of the fractional or charter outfits a call, suddenly able to "stomach renting" when it comes to riding in an aircraft one can't actually afford to own, operate, and keep maintained and operational/upgraded by themselves.

Fractional offers 4-10 hour advance time scheduling, but apparently not good enough for you because, as you say, the mandate of your mission is "to go when you want to go, and to wherever", which brings up truckload of crew-related questions you haven't addressed aside from the inferred requirement that the pilots live and hang around the airport on perpetual 24-hour standby, ready to launch at any given moment depending on your whims.

So apart from your max $500K for the aircraft, what's your annual budget for crew salaries, benefits, and training? Will you try and lowball the salaries under the strain of higher-than-expected maintenance/operating costs and join the "pay peanuts/hire monkeys" crowd?

*** If your limit of $500K per year to own/operate/manage the aircraft outright and assumes pilot salaries are included, don't waste any more time on this, you're nowhere even close to being in the ballpark even for a much smaller, newer, and more efficient aircraft let alone an old, fuel-guzzling/maintenance-hungry Gulfstream III or IV ****

Salaries: Right now and for the foreseeable future it's a pilot's market, especially for what's considered a larger-cabin aircraft in the Private/Corporate/VIP aviation world that you'll take internationally, and you'll have to budget accordingly, especially for a not-desirable, on-perpetual-call type job. With the G-500 coming this year, G-IIIs are now 4 Gulfstream generations old and type-rated (let alone current) G-III pilots aren't exactly growing on trees ripe for picking anymore. Most have fallen off the tree and retired. You'd have better luck finding rated G-IV pilots, which nowadays are entering the Jurassic Jet category with their own diminishing pool. Most experienced pilots that are rated in this old stuff have moved on to more modern aircraft, and for anyone you would want flying your family and to keep them around it would take a big carrot in terms $$$ and/or lifestyle to move backwards through time as far as equipment. At minimum, the combined salaries for an experienced Captain/FO crew combo in an average cost of living location will run $300k+. For 2 experienced Gulfstream Captains, obviously more. In a high cost of living area for either combo, more still.

"Go whenever you want, wherever you want": For your international or extended out-and-back domestic trips, even though you're operating a private aircraft and not strictly bound by the regulations designed to limit the length of time a pilot spends in the cockpit or on duty doing the work required before and after the actual flying in order to combat fatigue/tiredness, if your pilots advises you in order to follow best practices in terms of duty time/flight time limit recommendations by the NBAA that mirror those regs, will you accept paying for a 3rd pilot to augment the regular crew to make the flight?

"Go whenever you want, wherever you want cont'd": If you only hire 2, will you accept when your pilots can't sustain your sudden, no-lead time schedule you desire as a way of life due to the fact you're asking them to somehow be always be rested and ready condition for any and all pop-up trips you decide must go ASAP no matter the duration? To cover a rolling 24-hour schedule legally crewed by pilots adhering to duty limits & rest requirements air carriers and frac operators need to hire appx. 5 crew per aircraft whether they fly or sit reserve, yet it seems like your fantasy is to operate as cheaply as possible with only 2 crew who are supposed to fly and sit reserve 24 hours a day, going whenever you want like one might see in a movie. After they put the airplane to bed on domestic flights, are you willing to accept a minimum rest requirements of at least 10-12 hours as policy? 24 hours rest minimum after crossing a bagful of time zones on international trips?

"Go whenever you want, whenever you want to" cont'd etc: These sorts of crew work limits and rest requirements designed to operate safely throw a wrench into what you imagine is the "mission mandate" because 1) none of your flights are engaged in warfare where the fate of a nation hangs in the balance, so therefore 2) any pilot worth hiring has and adheres to a primary, regulatory mission mandate to first and foremost operate safely regardless of other wants, needs, desires, comfort, or efficiency concerns including yours even though you pay the bills. The regulations related to this primary mandate for all pilots are written in blood, and the few regs that weren't written specifically to cover private operations are nevertheless adhered to in the form of best practices by any professionally-run outfit's crew, and accident rates for those that do vs. those that don't bear out the wisdom of doing so. Among the many things that go into operating safely, having a rested crew (which means they can operate your entire plan from A to B, then C etc) in the awake condition trumps any of your own whimsical notions or trip-planning that doesn't coincide with the same.

"Go whenever I want, whenever I want to", verdict": <---- With this stated, so-called "mission mandate" (that apparently even the short-ish advance time that a fractional requires doesn't meet), unless you're willing to hire minimum 3 and optimally 4 pilots it will indeed remain a mere fantasy.

Training: If these are your indeed pilots, are you willing to bear the cost for Initial Training if you can't find 2 rated G-III/IV pilots willing to come work for you? Assuming you do find them, will you opt for the minimal, piecemeal expenditure of sending them to recurrent training only once per year instead of twice even though flying 100-150 hrs per year twice should automatically be part of your mandate as well, budgeting for the more expensive, full-service training contracts?

Time off: Will you allow the crew to plan for vacations, days off, etc, and factor-in the cost of hiring a contract pilot to cover any trips while they're gone if it conflicts with you deciding to "go when you want wherever you want"?...or will this be one of those "take-vacations-during-maintenance events/you don't fly much all year so I want you ready and wedded to my airplane at all times" kind of deals? Frankly, the latter is a bottom-feeder, crap job even flying modern equipment let alone long-in-tooth stuff, and in today's market unless you're paying top dollar any pilot you hire will be continually looking for greener pastures that allow some semblance of a life that involves family, friends, and non work-related responsibilities/activities.

Maintenance staffing: An old G-III/G-IV isn't an old Cessna 172/Piper Tri-Pacer. They're complicated, maintenance-hungry aircraft with pricey parts and expensive fixes that require a high level of managing to efficiently control costs while keeping the aircraft as available as possible. Are you going to expect one of the pilots to manage this aspect as a de facto Dir. of Maintenance trying to shepherd it himself through as-needed fixes and maintenance events while remaining on your "mission mandated" schedule, or are you going to hire an actual Maintenance professional with Gulfstream experience who can devote all his time and attention to taking care of your asset the way it should be through the manufacturer, service providers, and his own ability to wrench on the aircraft? If you don't hire a dedicated maintenance professional to fill that role are you going to compensate the pilot(s) above and beyond their pilot salary because it requires a substantial amount of time and effort, and will you be willing to eat with a smile any increased mx costs due to less than optimal decision-making by a pilot attempting to do a Maintenance pros job that could have been avoided by hiring a maintenance pro in the first place?

If an outside entity manages all your aircraft maintenance for you you'll just have to trust them when they present the bills, grin and bear it while writing the checks because, after all, you didn't want to wait around 4 hours for a fractional to show up and couldn't stomach renting. When stuff breaks, when inspections turn up unfortunate surprises, or mandated upgrades on equipment happen on frac or charter aircraft, you're robbed of that check-writing pleasure that comes with keeping it airworthy and serviceable. Also, unlike fractional or charter, if your airplane breaks while on a trip nobody will send you a replacement aircraft for nothing so you'll get to not only pay the bills to fix your own but write another check to whichever charter outfit or airline gets you home while your airplane sits broken at some outstation and crew settles into a local hotel.

Crew duties: Since you won't be doing a lot of flying per year, are you going to create one of those jobs where you expect your pilots to assume other, non-aviation related roles because you believe they're just sitting around? You mentioned a dog. Will walking during tech stops and cleaning-up after it when it has accidents on the airplane itself become part of pilot duties? Are you going to hire a full-time or arrange for a contract Flight Attendant as needed for long trips and/or with family and friends, or will you go cheap and expect one of the pilots to not only arrange meals/catering but also be tasked with sort of service inflight, cook things that need cooking and serve them when you or your wife or family or friends want things served? Just so you know, that's bottom-feeder territory as well.

On the Road: While the flight hours may only be 100-150 hrs per year, that doesn't indicate how many days the crew will be on the road where you'll be expected to pay for their hotels, meals, rental cars, etc. Will it be 30 or 40 days during a year or will your mission mandate 200+? Owning an aircraft at or exceeding the limit of one's ability/desire to fund it usually means pressure on the crew to cut costs on things like hotel expenses, and the more days in hotels the more pressure is applied to live more cheaply and uncomfortably. This is exactly the opposite of what should be happening the more one lives out a suitcase during a year.

No offense, but it sounds to me your idea for owning and operating your own stand-up cabin, Europe-range Gulfstream based on acquiring one for Citation Mustang/Embraer Phenom/Eclipse 500 money adds up to being a purely short-term experiment that's doomed to fail as many have before. There's a reason old G-IIIs and G-IVs have low acquisition costs and why charter and fractional companies successfully exist. If it were that easy to cheaply own and operate old G-IIIs and IVs everybody would be doing it, and that's not even factoring-in the requirement to invest $$$ into any crew you hire in an inversely proportional way to what you've outlined shoe-stringing the actual aircraft along with yet having pilots ready to go at all times. Unless you do, they will be short-term as well.

As someone else mentioned, your actual mission profile (if you still wanted to pursue direct ownership)...domestic flying with 1 trip a year to Europe where you don't mind a tech stop to let the dog out... is matched by equipment like a Falcon 2000, which also meets your desire for a larger cabin. That's actually what that particular aircraft, (and others) was was designed for since the U.S. is by far most bizjet manufacturer's largest market; nonstop, coast-to-coast range with reserves combined with good operating efficiencies at decent speeds in a comfortable cabin. Classic versions of the 2000 can be had in the neighborhood of $4 million and with 1/2 the fuel cost and 1/3 the maintenance costs compared to the G-III or IV, flying 150 hours the yearly savings on those 2 items alone will pay for both pilots' combined annual salary of $300K.
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Old 4th Aug 2018, 07:55
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14,
The Challenger 300 may be a good alternative. Its the cheapest airplane with a flat floor. G3 is definitely not possible out of John Wayne and in Europe due to noise. But your aviation manager surely mentioned that?
How many hours do you currently charter a year?
And yes, rule-of-thumb, the first hour on a less-than-10y-old super midsize jet will cost you 1m, and each subsequent hour is 3000$, plus landing fees, catering, crew overnight. The 1m is your fix cost, whether the airplane flies 1h or 500h. And be cautious about things breaking down, just to give you a few examples, a flight display is 75k (and your typical jet has 4 of those), the coffee maker, DVD player, microwave is 7k, a hydraulic distribution vale is 35k.
Your aviation manager should be able to produce tables of comparison between each of the airplanes mentioned in this thread, and he should be able to guide you through the market and identify the good deals for you.
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Old 4th Aug 2018, 15:45
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Originally Posted by PukinDog

The "mandate of your mission" as you've laid out (max 500K, 100-150 hours, 1 int'l trip per year, go whenever you want to wherever) is exactly the niche the fractional scheme is aimed-at and has been successful catering to.
Preach the truth, Brother!
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Old 5th Aug 2018, 00:29
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PukinDog - excellent, accurate, informative post. Good job!
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Old 5th Aug 2018, 08:56
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Originally Posted by josephfeatherweight
PukinDog - excellent, accurate, informative post. Good job!
I concur.
Some additional comments:
1 Who wants a pilot job where you don't fly much and are on standby all the time?
2 Who will assess the competence of the pilots who will have your life, and your wife's life, in their hands? Are you competent enough for that? Same question for the quality of maintenance and actual safety of your aircraft. There are so many crooks in aviation, waiting for the rich guys who are ready to get ripped. You will pay a 50k bill where 1k should have been enough, and, even worse, you will pay 50k where you should have spent 500k when you will want to save money.
3 With one aircraft flying not much, your not an important client for anyone in the business. You will pay more for crew, maintenance, fuel, FBO, everything, and get poor quality of service. When an urgent repair needs to be done for several clients at the same time, you won't be the first served, and you'll have to charter a plane.

If you are a pilot and want to fly a jet for pleasure, the only way to do it is to purchase one.
If you are not a pilot, don't purchase any sort of aircraft: you will loose money, and get a poor quality of service.
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Old 6th Aug 2018, 02:58
  #36 (permalink)  
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Pukin dog, you make some good points and I thank you for your feedback . Sorry to take so long to respond, I am currently in Aruba on vacation.

I do take umbrage, however, to your supposition that when it comes to hiring and keeping staff, my main motivation is parsimony .

I don't like to talk much about myself really, but this one hits close to home . You see, I too am a captain, only of the military variety .I'm in the reserves now and about a year out from making Major .you see, the United States army taught me everything I will ever need to know about the topic you are speaking of....we call it soldier care. I am currently the company commander of my unit, and I have to look after the care and feeding of my troops .this involves morale, discipline, and helping them achieve their goals as well as mine. My unit cannot achieve it's goals without the morale being sufficiently high, and thanks to the army, I am an expert in keeping my people happy while achieving my mission .

I know, it's weird, but some of us multimillionaires have a penchant for serving our country. I am also proud of treating my employees like I want to be treated, which is why I am where I am.

Next, another poster made mention of mechanical skills and aptitude. It is assumed that someone on my position is a check writing administrator with enough mechanical skills to work a ballpoint pen . In fact, although I did not make my money this way, I am a 25 year master Porsche engine rebuilder. I am the only one in the world who makes replacement legacy engine cases. Not even Porsche makes these. Oh, and mine are better and I have earned three patents for air cooled engines and am widely considered an expert in internal combustion performance engines .

Which means jack when it comes to airplane motors, but even so, it will be very, very hard for someone to pull the wool over my eyes when it comes to repairs. Thanks to the army, I can read and interpret government regulations
Think airplane maintenance regs are bad, try the ucmj . Lastly, I can hire mechanics, obtain wholesale accounts and buy parts and figure it out. I'm not worried.

However, all the valuable info on this thread has taught me a humbling fact: I cannot afford this proposition at this time. Yes, even me. I make 2m per year, live in a 5.3m house and have 17 cars. Buy you know what? Based on the data you have all given me, this airplane ownership thing makes no financial sense.

And I owe you all for showing me that. And I appreciate it . Just be real careful about the assumptions you make when gauging motivations; your enemy may not be as two dimensional as you think......military axiom .

Thank you .

The Captain
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Old 6th Aug 2018, 15:16
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Catorce14:

PukinDog gave an excellent appraisal of your ideas.

I would add just one more thing: pilot handling skills are perishable, and if people do not get enough flying, their skills degrade. How much is enough? Certainly 100-150 hr per year is not enough for people to be always at the top of their game. Actually, the number of sectors is more important than hours - the demanding bits are take-off and departure, descent, approach, and landing. The level cruise bit does not add a whole lot to skills.

I suggest a sensible minimum for a crew is around 5-10 sectors per month to maintain a good skill level. Your planned utilisation seems to be well below that.

Think about this: you and your family are on board, your pilots have flown twice in the last month, and tonight you are heading into a difficult field, short runway, poor weather, crosswind near the limit.

Is that where you really want to be?
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 00:23
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The Captain,

No doubt why you are where you are, you listen to all and work out what’s perfect for you.

Now if only I had a classic Porsche and wanted a new engine....

Enjoy some chartering.

Also you seem to certainly like aviation, a trip to Oshkosh is always worth a look into the world of aviation.


GA.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 06:39
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Perfect timing. I was just thinking to myself this past weekend we have not had a "new member" post about wanting a large cabin jet on the cheap for awhile.
Kinda of ironic how it is always the same scenario.
1. I want to OWN a large cabin jet - not charter
2. I will fly in the 99% in the US with ONE trip to Europe each year... so I need the big jet to do that ONE trip.
3. Always GIV or GIII in question.
4. Always why can I not make a GIII work..they are so cheap. Buy a lot of fuel for a million dollars.........
5. Forum always explaining why it does not make $$$$ sense.
6. New member never to be heard from again.

Still love reading the post though.

Good luck.
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Old 7th Aug 2018, 13:04
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Originally Posted by Catorce14
Pukin dog, you make some good points and I thank you for your feedback . Sorry to take so long to respond, I am currently in Aruba on vacation.

I do take umbrage, however, to your supposition that when it comes to hiring and keeping staff, my main motivation is parsimony .

I don't like to talk much about myself really, but this one hits close to home . You see, I too am a captain, only of the military variety .I'm in the reserves now and about a year out from making Major .you see, the United States army taught me everything I will ever need to know about the topic you are speaking of....we call it soldier care. I am currently the company commander of my unit, and I have to look after the care and feeding of my troops .this involves morale, discipline, and helping them achieve their goals as well as mine. My unit cannot achieve it's goals without the morale being sufficiently high, and thanks to the army, I am an expert in keeping my people happy while achieving my mission .

I know, it's weird, but some of us multimillionaires have a penchant for serving our country. I am also proud of treating my employees like I want to be treated, which is why I am where I am.

Next, another poster made mention of mechanical skills and aptitude. It is assumed that someone on my position is a check writing administrator with enough mechanical skills to work a ballpoint pen . In fact, although I did not make my money this way, I am a 25 year master Porsche engine rebuilder. I am the only one in the world who makes replacement legacy engine cases. Not even Porsche makes these. Oh, and mine are better and I have earned three patents for air cooled engines and am widely considered an expert in internal combustion performance engines .

Which means jack when it comes to airplane motors, but even so, it will be very, very hard for someone to pull the wool over my eyes when it comes to repairs. Thanks to the army, I can read and interpret government regulations
Think airplane maintenance regs are bad, try the ucmj . Lastly, I can hire mechanics, obtain wholesale accounts and buy parts and figure it out. I'm not worried.

However, all the valuable info on this thread has taught me a humbling fact: I cannot afford this proposition at this time. Yes, even me. I make 2m per year, live in a 5.3m house and have 17 cars. Buy you know what? Based on the data you have all given me, this airplane ownership thing makes no financial sense.

And I owe you all for showing me that. And I appreciate it . Just be real careful about the assumptions you make when gauging motivations; your enemy may not be as two dimensional as you think......military axiom .

Thank you .

The Captain
25-year Porsche mechanic...that would make you around my age (I'm 43). And you're only an O-3 in the reserves?
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