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-   -   Not Flown Since 2008 (https://www.pprune.org/private-flying/648220-not-flown-since-2008-a.html)

beenawhile 8th Aug 2022 09:47

Not Flown Since 2008
Hi all,

Long story short - used to be a PPL/NR/IMC holder for around 3 years. Got to circa 100 hours in the book and other commitments took over - demanding job, wife, kids, house etc. The usual really. In fairness, haven't really missed it.

Just turned 35 and visited the air museum with the kids at Elvington, Lovely Dakota being worked on. Called off at Full Sutton (my old club) on the way back.

Sat one of the kids in the 150 I used to rent, he loved it. I loved it. Think the smell gave me the bug again. Shouldn't have done it. Beginnings of the midlife crisis?!

Thing is, no way in hell we can afford a CofA plane with the little disposable cash we have now. So what's the cheapest way to fly? LAA permit mogas machine?

Looking for the absolute cheapest way that would get me (and preferably the 8 year old but not essential) safely in the sky, regular hobby back in our lives (not one-off, trial flights etc). Powered, not powered, engine on my back, microlight, parachute, jumping off hills, really don't care. Has to be cheap as chips and a bit more physical than MSFS (as fun as that is) or flying the drone.

Big ask, I know. Off-chance kind of question, just to see where things and folks are at nowadays, what the options are.

Failing flying, might have to be a motorbike but don't want to inspire the kids with that!


IFMU 8th Aug 2022 14:30

I went 9 years with no flying due to family reasons. But when I wasn't flying, I was building an aircraft with my oldest son, who had the interest. Now I'm back flying and my hourly cost is cheap. Not sure if you have similar experimental - amateur built options in the UK or not.

BillieBob 8th Aug 2022 14:59

'Safe' and 'cheap' suggests gliders or microlights. Many modern microlights will out-perform a C150 and are cheaper to operate. Consider a visit to Rufforth (York Gliding Centre) and/or Sherburn in Elmet (Breeze Aviation) for a start. (Other locations are available)

Maoraigh1 8th Aug 2022 20:03

I went 21:years without flying after getting my PPL at 24. Now been flying for 35 years since getting it back. 3 years after regaining it I bought a Jodel DR1050 share for 1600. Shares were 2,300 by 2016, 60 per tach hour and 50 per month.for 6 members. The Group disbanded in 2020.. I now fly a Bolkow Junior.
First revalidate your PPL.
As you do so look around for a Group operating an LAA permit or microlight aircraft.
Or maybe make contacts first to find what you can afford before retraining.
Beware of aircraft too different from what you train on.

rudestuff 8th Aug 2022 20:07

The cheapest way to get lots of flying? How about fly another 100 hours, get a CPL/IR then change careers?

blind pew 8th Aug 2022 21:35

If you like challenge and have lots of time to spare then gliding.
More expensive but with more freedom is paragliding.
Both are far more intellectually challenging than power flying.
My old uk club just had there first 750km flight..two instructors who have been chasing distance for the last 25 years.
Me I’ve flown three sites over the last three days and flown over 3 hours..have several thousand hours.
photo is from Slieve Gullion looking over Forkhill where my son in law got mortered for any pongos on the thread.

Less Hair 8th Aug 2022 22:08

No big deal. Go to a flight school, tell them what happened and fly with an instructor and see how it goes. A lot has changed concerning flight planning and navigation technology. Fly with an instructor and accept his advice until you are good to go alone if you still like it. Do you have a fresh medical? This should be step one.
You can join a club or share an aircraft with friends to get hours for cheap later on. Or just share rides and fuel costs.

Genghis the Engineer 9th Aug 2022 11:46

I'd suggest buying a small share in something either a 2-seat microlight, or basic but sensible LAA type, and revalidate your licence with a local instructor and then examiner in that. This basically means a couple of thousand up front you'll need to find, but then hopefully your ongoing flying should be very cheap, and in extreme financial straits (or to upgrade later) you can eventually sell the share.

Realistically you're probably looking at 2000 for the cheapest shares, which might be something costing around 75 a month and 75/hr (that is the cheapest, most will be more than that, but starting there for the thinking. A rough guess on the cheapest you'll get back into flying...

12hrs instruction over 3 months, 40/hr to the instructor, and 200 to an examiner plus aircraft use for the test, that'll cost you around 1,800.

So around 3,800 to get you properly back into flying again, after which say you're looking to fly 3hrs/month - you're looking for another 300 / month, - 100/hr in effect.

Yes you *might* get lucky and do it cheaper than that, but as I'm sure you know well, flying's not cheap however you do it.

Just developing the argument - particularly in favour of microlights, have a look at this advert: https://afors.com/aircraftView/52811...United-Kingdom . I've not flown the specific aeroplane, but know the delightful type and airfield well so something like this would be a good choice in my opinion. How do these numbers work:-

Share: 2,750
12 hrs with an instructor at 40/hr over 3 months + examiner = 1,250

- So "kick-off" cost about 4k

After that 3hrs/month would cost you a much cheaper 140 (47/hr), a more honest 170/month / 57/hr if you add in West London Aero Club membership.


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