Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 40 of 45

Thread: The 300$ Annual

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    29
    Post Thanks / Like

    The 300$ Annual

    What’s with the 300$ Annual? Are you kidding me. Your doing a disservice to all AP/IA’s. There is no way you can do an inspection for 300$ Yes I’ve seen it, with a receipt. Might have been a few years back but how can anyone afford to try and do a real inspection for that? A customer bought a 172D recently and is having me do a post purchase inspection, it’s a very low time airplane and I think he did ok. I was shocked when going through the logs and paperwork to find many years of getting the 300$ annual. We all know IA’s that walk around an airplane, smoke a cigar and sign of an annual for way less than a contentious mechanic that’s not retired could ever do. It’s hard enough to do a reputable job and make a living competing with people like that. On the 172 it appeared many of the inspection covers had not been off for many years, no current AD list just the typical AD’s checked through this date. It’s no wonder there is less and less people willing to do this line of work with the liability we have. Ive seen similar on cubs and every thing in between. A shop in my state does more annuals in a year than I could possibly do in 3 or more. They sell some great parts and are on this site allot. I have inspected one such cub that came out of there shop. It was an A model cub with a standard fuselage! Old stiff flexible oil hoses to the oil cooler that probably had not been changed in many many years and no STC to do that legally among other things. They had been doing annuals on it for many years. I looked at a friends 206 on the KP in AK he had an annual done and paid to have both outboard gear boxes replaced but they did not install all the rivets! The short flexible fuel hose in the nose gear well was falling apart. The nose gear link has a bolt that the head was missing it the nut was still on it. The through bolt on the nose wheel had stripped threads also. He said the young helpers were doing the work as the former IA had been revoked and another family member was the IA signing off the work. But they were cheep. I guess I’m trying to say you get what you pay for and it’s going to catch up with you or the mechanic eventually. Especially when you go to sell the airplane, if it doesn’t kill you first.
    Last edited by Supercub Works; 06-27-2021 at 07:55 PM.
    Thanks JeffP thanked for this post
    Likes 2cubfamily liked this post

  2. #2
    NoFlaps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2020
    Posts
    110
    Post Thanks / Like
    I paid $300 for my owner assisted annual this year. Feel like I may have done $300 in labor myself. Greatful to have a sharp guy who is teaching me how do it right, by the inspection sheet.

    Sorry to hear about things in AK. Rest assured, the same things are happening in the lower 48. Seen some bizarre stuff helping the IA out on annuals…


    Sent from my iPhone using SuperCub.Org

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    29
    Post Thanks / Like
    I’d better set the record straight, I’m in the lower 48 specifically OR. Been working on aircraft for 30+ years. There is plenty of excellent mechanics in AK and every other state. I get it sometimes you get a bro deal when you help in the shop and are competent to do maintenance yourself. But you would need to do 200 annuals a year at 300$ each to bring in 60K a year. That’s just not enough to live on in this day and age. I’d have to agree that a basic well maintained aircraft would not need a extensive annal. I guess my point is how can you feel good about your time and the work that comes out of your shop when you really don’t do a full inspection as required. It’s getting harder and harder to find a good AP/IA and how many do you know who moved on to something else to support themselves or there family’s? I know several and what about all the ones who got an AP and never used it at all. I think we all know some of them, can’t blame them. Most of the aircraft I work on are older and there is always something that could use attention or needs fixed. Airworthy or not it’s an aging fleet. As long as you feel good about your safety I’m ok with it.
    Thanks TCE thanked for this post

  4. #4
    Paul Persinger Jr.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    56
    Post Thanks / Like
    My annuals are usually about 10 times that much. Annual time is a good time to do mods too.

  5. #5
    RVBottomly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Location
    Asotin County Washington (KLWS)
    Posts
    1,179
    Post Thanks / Like
    FWIW, my last annual was 40 times that! Maybe because the previous owner had decades of the kind of annuals you are talking about.

    (I knew what I was getting into, BTW).
    Thanks CharlieN thanked for this post

  6. #6
    Grant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    At Work.....
    Posts
    1,898
    Post Thanks / Like
    Annuals are all about value, not cost, and are directly proportional....to a point. However, I cant imagine how much value there is in a $300 annual.

    I have done Annuals for friends that were all but free. However, I fly those airplanes at no cost and consider that a "form of payment". When I was doing it for a living, my rates were 10% higher than all but one shop on the field. When I would do work for a discount, regardless of the reason, I ALWAYS listed the standard price and applied a discount; this way it reminded me what I was giving away, and the customer what I was giving. When I do annuals now for some of the same friends I still list the full price of what its worth with the associated discount. What I'm really doing is telling them how much value I place on flying their airplane.

    I have done really inexpensive annuals, and annuals that ended up costing over $250K.... Yes $250,000.00. Not on a cub but on an airplane that carried a 1.5 Million dollar camera system. To that customer the value was there, they wanted EVERYTHING perfect. They were happy to pay it. That airplane is now the most reliable airplane in their fleet and has paid for itself in dispatch reliability many times over.


    My point is, that you, as a mechanic, need to be paid for your expertise, skill, and experience and the customer needs to understand what the value is. I always made sure the customer understood what we were doing and understood what it takes to do it properly. Once they understand it then they are able to corolate the cost with a value to them.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Soldotna, Alaska
    Posts
    928
    Post Thanks / Like
    I would think a proper paperwork review would cost more than $300.
    Likes Paul Heinrich liked this post

  8. #8
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Graham, TX
    Posts
    21,080
    Post Thanks / Like
    Like any profession there are hacks and their are the folks who do quality work.

    Quote Originally Posted by Supercub Works View Post
    A shop in my state does more annuals in a year than I could possibly do in 3 or more. They sell some great parts and are on this site allot. I have inspected one such cub that came out of there shop. It was an A model cub with a standard fuselage! Old stiff flexible oil hoses to the oil cooler that probably had not been changed in many many years and no STC to do that legally among other things. They had been doing annuals on it for many years.
    Did you call them and ask them about what you found?
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

  9. #9
    behindpropellers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    NE Ohio
    Posts
    6,933
    Post Thanks / Like



    I just took a prop off of a 170 because there was nothing in the logs about which prop was installed. 30 years of annuals without a propeller AD list....
    Likes RaisedByWolves liked this post

  10. #10
    NoFlaps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2020
    Posts
    110
    Post Thanks / Like
    I should caveat, last year, first annual after purchase was nearly 10K. Years of neglect and pencil whipped annuals…


    Sent from my iPhone using SuperCub.Org

  11. #11

    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Upper Peninsula of Michigan
    Posts
    685
    Post Thanks / Like
    My old IA who was one of the most knowledgeable guys I’ve ever known (also a CFII, ATP, you name it) would do my annuals for $350-$400. He made sure everything was up to par and had been maintaining our aircraft for decades….it wasn’t really a bro deal because he used his hourly rate for all. Granted, my plane was a Tcraft and he knew it intimately. So if you were to see invoices on my logs for this….you may get angry….maybe this was the case with the one you saw too, this man did awesome work and charged what he charged. He’s gone now. I do understand your frustration though ….hard to make a living and very hard to deal with owners who complain.

  12. #12

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    7,564
    Post Thanks / Like
    Before I got my IA, the guy I had signing my logs would drop by my house and sign - for $300. Now I do it myself - takes two weeks (I am slow). But it is cheaper.

    I agree - paperwork can easily take 5 hours. A friend with a pristine 180 wanted an annual - I spent 5 hours researching his ADs and alterations, and determined that I simply couldn't sign it as conforming. I recommended another IA, and it was done in a day. What I found was typical - alterations without approved data.

    Another was a truly beautiful award-winning J3 - it took five field approvals to bring it into conformance, and my time with the ASI was over three hours. It had been out of conformance since the 1980s, and a lot of the ensuing annuals were done by FAA repair shops. Still needs the 1" "NO STEP" decals, but I didn't sign the annual.
    Likes Pete Schoeninger liked this post

  13. #13
    Hardtailjohn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Marion, MT
    Posts
    869
    Post Thanks / Like
    In the same breath.... I've followed a $5000 annual that was absolutely NOT airworthy! They'd worried about all the cosmetics and do-dads, and forgot to look at the corrosion in the main spar carry through.
    John
    Thanks Coondog thanked for this post
    Likes DENNY, hotrod180 liked this post

  14. #14

    Join Date
    May 2021
    Location
    Arizona, USA
    Posts
    227
    Post Thanks / Like
    I'm quite sure that any IA who wanted to run up a nice repair bill could find something wrong with any airplane, including those just delivered by the factory. I do all my own maintenance and repairs (under supervision if required) and I also do my own annual inspection on my PA28. After I have done my inspection and corrected everything I think needs to be corrected I ask my IA to inspect it. I pay for the second set of eyes and a signature.

    There is simply no need to conduct a protracted documentation review for an airplane which had no configuration change since the same IA did the inspection the year before.

    Every time you ask a different person to do the inspection the inspector's knowledge of your airplane is reset to zero a new set of pass/fail criteria is invoked. That was one of my motivations for going experimental and getting the repairman certificate.
    Last edited by frequent_flyer; 06-28-2021 at 08:39 PM.

  15. #15
    cubdrvr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    YKN(mother city of the dakotas)
    Posts
    1,259
    Post Thanks / Like
    I think annual inspections have been around forever. I'd like to hear some thoughts as to the relevance of a yearly inspection. Should it remain....which it likely will? Or would some other
    criteria be better that could insure compliance and save the aircraft owner some money? Maybe a combo of flight hours and calendar times?
    If I fly 2000 hours per year in Part 91........or 100 hours per year......or 10 hours .....would there be a better solution to address maintenance requirements.
    2000 hours should require more inspections........10 hours less, but it also would not do to require 100 hrs inspections for the low flight times which would be an annual every 10 years.
    Does anyone do progressives for light GA aircraft........and how does that work out?
    Any workable alternatives to the annual?
    "Sometimes a Cigar is just a Cigar"
    Thanks mixer thanked for this post

  16. #16

    Join Date
    May 2021
    Location
    Arizona, USA
    Posts
    227
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by cubdrvr View Post
    Any workable alternatives to the annual?
    Of course. FAA thinks an aircraft in commercial service needs to be inspected at 100 hours. Aircraft not in commercial service could be inspected only when 100 hours or when 2 years had elapsed which ever comes first. Opening up the airplane for inspection at 25 or 50 hours flight time has no safety benefit but does have some risk of causing damage.

    I gave up taking stuff apart to see why it was working a long time ago. FAA has not yet found out how stupid this is.
    Likes DENNY, Richgj3 liked this post

  17. #17
    wireweinie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Palmer, AK
    Posts
    4,046
    Post Thanks / Like
    I think the annual does fit the bill pretty well. If you fly a lot, you'll need to check wear items mostly. If you don't fly much, do you really want to go more than a year before inspecting for corrosion?

    Also getting someone to look for new ADs at least once a year seems prudent.

    A progressive would seem to be ideal but it's a hassle to set up. And you'll have to get the owner on board with taking it to an A&P every 25 hrs or so.

    Web
    Life's tough . . . wear a cup.
    Likes DENNY, Hardtailjohn liked this post

  18. #18

    Join Date
    May 2021
    Location
    Arizona, USA
    Posts
    227
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by wireweinie View Post
    If you don't fly much, do you really want to go more than a year before inspecting for corrosion?

    Web
    There isn't enough moisture where I live for anything to corrode. No corrosion has ever been found at annual inspection in any aircraft I have owned and maintained in the last 35 years.
    Last edited by frequent_flyer; 06-28-2021 at 08:34 PM.

  19. #19
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Graham, TX
    Posts
    21,080
    Post Thanks / Like
    An annual inspection in the eyes of the FAA is pretty vague in my opinion.

    Dave, I can come up and inspect it for you if you like.


    LII Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (e-CFR) Title 14 - Aeronautics and Space CHAPTER I - FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION SUBCHAPTER C - AIRCRAFT PART 43 - MAINTENANCE, PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE, REBUILDING, AND ALTERATION Appendix D to Part 43 - Scope and Detail of Items (as Applicable to the Particular Aircraft) To Be Included in Annual and 100-Hour Inspections
    14 CFR Appendix D to Part 43 - Scope and Detail of Items (as Applicable to the Particular Aircraft) To Be Included in Annual and 100-Hour Inspections
    CFR
    prev | next
    Appendix D to Part 43 - Scope and Detail of Items (as Applicable to the Particular Aircraft) To Be Included in Annual and 100-Hour Inspections
    (a) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall, before that inspection, remove or open all necessary inspection plates, access doors, fairing, and cowling. He shall thoroughly clean the aircraft and aircraft engine.

    (b) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall inspect (where applicable) the following components of the fuselage and hull group:

    (1) Fabric and skin - for deterioration, distortion, other evidence of failure, and defective or insecure attachment of fittings.

    (2) Systems and components - for improper installation, apparent defects, and unsatisfactory operation.

    (3) Envelope, gas bags, ballast tanks, and related parts - for poor condition.

    (c) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall inspect (where applicable) the following components of the cabin and cockpit group:

    (1) Generally - for uncleanliness and loose equipment that might foul the controls.

    (2) Seats and safety belts - for poor condition and apparent defects.

    (3) Windows and windshields - for deterioration and breakage.

    (4) Instruments - for poor condition, mounting, marking, and (where practicable) improper operation.

    (5) Flight and engine controls - for improper installation and improper operation.

    (6) Batteries - for improper installation and improper charge.

    (7) All systems - for improper installation, poor general condition, apparent and obvious defects, and insecurity of attachment.

    (d) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall inspect (where applicable) components of the engine and nacelle group as follows:

    (1) Engine section - for visual evidence of excessive oil, fuel, or hydraulic leaks, and sources of such leaks.

    (2) Studs and nuts - for improper torquing and obvious defects.

    (3) Internal engine - for cylinder compression and for metal particles or foreign matter on screens and sump drain plugs. If there is weak cylinder compression, for improper internal condition and improper internal tolerances.

    (4) Engine mount - for cracks, looseness of mounting, and looseness of engine to mount.

    (5) Flexible vibration dampeners - for poor condition and deterioration.

    (6) Engine controls - for defects, improper travel, and improper safetying.

    (7) Lines, hoses, and clamps - for leaks, improper condition and looseness.

    ( Exhaust stacks - for cracks, defects, and improper attachment.

    (9) Accessories - for apparent defects in security of mounting.

    (10) All systems - for improper installation, poor general condition, defects, and insecure attachment.

    (11) Cowling - for cracks, and defects.

    (e) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall inspect (where applicable) the following components of the landing gear group:

    (1) All units - for poor condition and insecurity of attachment.

    (2) Shock absorbing devices - for improper oleo fluid level.

    (3) Linkages, trusses, and members - for undue or excessive wear fatigue, and distortion.

    (4) Retracting and locking mechanism - for improper operation.

    (5) Hydraulic lines - for leakage.

    (6) Electrical system - for chafing and improper operation of switches.

    (7) Wheels - for cracks, defects, and condition of bearings.

    ( Tires - for wear and cuts.

    (9) Brakes - for improper adjustment.

    (10) Floats and skis - for insecure attachment and obvious or apparent defects.

    (f) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall inspect (where applicable) all components of the wing and center section assembly for poor general condition, fabric or skin deterioration, distortion, evidence of failure, and insecurity of attachment.

    (g) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall inspect (where applicable) all components and systems that make up the complete empennage assembly for poor general condition, fabric or skin deterioration, distortion, evidence of failure, insecure attachment, improper component installation, and improper component operation.

    (h) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall inspect (where applicable) the following components of the propeller group:

    (1) Propeller assembly - for cracks, nicks, binds, and oil leakage.

    (2) Bolts - for improper torquing and lack of safetying.

    (3) Anti-icing devices - for improper operations and obvious defects.

    (4) Control mechanisms - for improper operation, insecure mounting, and restricted travel.

    (i) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall inspect (where applicable) the following components of the radio group:

    (1) Radio and electronic equipment - for improper installation and insecure mounting.

    (2) Wiring and conduits - for improper routing, insecure mounting, and obvious defects.

    (3) Bonding and shielding - for improper installation and poor condition.

    (4) Antenna including trailing antenna - for poor condition, insecure mounting, and improper operation.

    (j) Each person performing an annual or 100-hour inspection shall inspect (where applicable) each installed miscellaneous item that is not otherwise covered by this listing for improper installation and improper operation.
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers
    Likes C130jake, moneyburner liked this post

  20. #20

    Join Date
    Aug 2019
    Location
    ANC
    Posts
    98
    Post Thanks / Like
    As someone else said, the quality of maintenance is all over the place just like the quality of pilots.

    I just dropped off a cessna for a minor squawk (javelin tank not transferring fuel) only to find out that the shop was 2 days into an annual inspection when I followed up. Never mentioned the word annual or anything other than the fuel pump situation when I dropped it off.

    The last entry in the logbook was the annual inspection being signed off last month. Truly frustrating.

    Another issue that the quality of maintenance doesn't necessarily correlate with price. Just because I paid 10k for an annual doesn't mean it was necessarily a good one. I know from experience, sadly.
    Likes Hardtailjohn liked this post

  21. #21
    Gordon Misch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Toledo, Wa (KTDO)
    Posts
    3,873
    Post Thanks / Like
    I'm fortunate to have an IA who will come inspect after I have inspected my -12 per the Piper Inspection Report and have corrected any issues (which I explain to him in detail).
    Gordon

    N4328M KTDO
    My SPOT: tinyurl.com/N4328M (case sensitive)
    Thanks mixer thanked for this post
    Likes Hardtailjohn liked this post

  22. #22

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    2,457
    Post Thanks / Like
    Soooooooo are you paying for the inspection or to fix problems found????? I fly year round try hard not to push off problems until the Annual time. I pay for a no BS inspection of my plane. That really only takes 3-4 hours depending on if it is a cub or 180. The rest of the time is spent adjusting and lubing stuff while you are looking at it. I can usually get a cable or other issue replaced in a 8 hour day. I do my own oil/bearing/cleaning so the IA does not have to worry about it. Any issues not covered in the first day at a rate of 100.00$ an hour I expect to pay for!!! I have seen both sides of the coin. Shops that charge 5-10 grand a year for 3 years and the plane is a wreck. Pilots that bring in a total wreck and expect a 500 dollar annual with problems that will take weeks to fix!!! From a paperwork aspect I would expect to pay for 3 or more hours on the first visit on a good day.
    DENNY
    Thanks mixer thanked for this post
    Likes hotrod180, Crash, Jr. liked this post

  23. #23
    Gordon Misch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Toledo, Wa (KTDO)
    Posts
    3,873
    Post Thanks / Like
    Denny, if your first sentence was directed to me, I pay for the inspection, AD review, and signature. I do the work, including anything the IA finds that I may have missed. I like it that way cuz two sets of eyes, and I don't have to worry about the cost of time, so can be plenty fussy about the work.
    Gordon

    N4328M KTDO
    My SPOT: tinyurl.com/N4328M (case sensitive)
    Thanks mixer thanked for this post

  24. #24
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Graham, TX
    Posts
    21,080
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Pierce View Post
    Did you call them and ask them about what you found?
    Since the original poster hasn't answered my question I will assume he did not. Just did a lot of work on a J3 rebuilt by a big name shop and found some issues. I talked to them multiple times. They were receptive and hopefully the feedback will help them in the future. If someone finds something I missed I want to know about it, how else will I learn. Owner found something I missed on a J3 recently and I flew over to his airport to fix. That is the stuff that keeps me up at night.

    For what it is worth I cannot inspect a Cub in 3-4 hours. It takes me at least a day to do a thorough inspection of everything. Also, those owners that go to those guys for a $300 annual, I do not want to work for. One thing I have learned over the last 24 years from running my own shop is that there are certain people that I do not want to work for. They will cost me money. Most of my customers I call friends. There is a trust built there. I feel like their airplanes are my airplanes and when something happens to one of them it bothers me. They trust me to inspect and repair and be fair with the cost and I trust them to treat the airplane right and let me know when and if there is an issue. Same goes with other mechanics. I have had to call many. Some are receptive and some get defensive. Over the years I have made a lot of friends and built respect with many fellow mechanics over such confrontations. They are not easy but in my opinion the right thing to do.
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers
    Thanks FdxLou, tamarack thanked for this post
    Likes cubscout, mam90, flynlow, moneyburner, mixer and 3 others liked this post

  25. #25
    Crash, Jr.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Anchorage, AK
    Posts
    666
    Post Thanks / Like
    I think a lot of the price difference between annuals can depend a lot on how many times the plane is seen by a mechanic every year. If it's just a once a year thing for an owner than seldom does maintenance and only flies a few hours a year then certainly you (as a mechanic) want to really go over it with a fine tooth comb and make sure it's squared away.

    On the other hand for someone like myself who has used the same mechanic for pre-buy, first service, regular maintenance, and annuals...that mechanic knows my plane inside and out and knows generally what things are needing to be checked based on an extensive service history. The plane goes into the shop a few times a year outside of annual inspection just for little squawks so the mechanic gets plenty of time outside of annual to check on things. Even beyond that, the mechanic I use knows my habits for routine maintenance and knowledge level to identify possible issues and can have confidence that I as an owner am staying on top of the maintenance items before they become big issues. In that way I don't expect to have a huge annual inspection that costs over a thousand dollars and possibly as few as $300 since the maintenance and logbooks are well known so it's a fairly brief inspection and a few little maintenance things like wheel bearings/spark plugs/compression test.
    Likes moneyburner, DENNY, supercrow liked this post

  26. #26

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    2,457
    Post Thanks / Like
    My comment was not directed at anyone in particular. Just trying to point out that people complain of the price of an annual inspection without noting how much repair work or maintenance was also done at the time.
    DENNY
    Likes hotrod180 liked this post

  27. #27
    behindpropellers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    NE Ohio
    Posts
    6,933
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by Crash, Jr. View Post
    I think a lot of the price difference between annuals can depend a lot on how many times the plane is seen by a mechanic every year. If it's just a once a year thing for an owner than seldom does maintenance and only flies a few hours a year then certainly you (as a mechanic) want to really go over it with a fine tooth comb and make sure it's squared away.

    On the other hand for someone like myself who has used the same mechanic for pre-buy, first service, regular maintenance, and annuals...that mechanic knows my plane inside and out and knows generally what things are needing to be checked based on an extensive service history. The plane goes into the shop a few times a year outside of annual inspection just for little squawks so the mechanic gets plenty of time outside of annual to check on things. Even beyond that, the mechanic I use knows my habits for routine maintenance and knowledge level to identify possible issues and can have confidence that I as an owner am staying on top of the maintenance items before they become big issues. In that way I don't expect to have a huge annual inspection that costs over a thousand dollars and possibly as few as $300 since the maintenance and logbooks are well known so it's a fairly brief inspection and a few little maintenance things like wheel bearings/spark plugs/compression test.

    That's a good point. It seems like many people buy airplanes thinking they are like a new car. Drive it and just change the oil. Also, there are people that cut corners on repairs. Often times cutting corners on a repair will compound the cost to properly fix an issue down the road.

    Tim
    Likes DENNY liked this post

  28. #28

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    7,564
    Post Thanks / Like
    It really does take a day on a Cub, unless it is an 18 with that muffler AD, which takes me a half day all by itself. I cannot even get the cowling off and on in less than 90 minutes. The Cub is dirtbag simple. You do have to clean it, which takes some time, in addition to all the other things.

    I have heard that in order to inspect wheel bearings you need to clean and repack them. Yearly. Not going to argue with that except to say that losing a wheel bearing in a car on the freeway would be a lot more catastrophic.

    Again, it is the paperwork that drives the cost up. Get all the ADs lined up in one spot with dates and page numbers, and get all major alterations documented in one spot with source of data (Field Approval, STC, 43-13) right next to the date on the 337. Then you reduce the thousand dollar paperwork cost by an order of magnitude. You might expect last year's IA to remember all that, but if he didn't make an easily understood list, he won't remember, and will have to repeat the exercise. My lists get transcribed into the most recent logbooks. They are not on loose printouts.

  29. #29
    RaisedByWolves's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    4,497
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by bob turner View Post
    It really does take a day on a Cub, unless it is an 18 with that muffler AD, which takes me a half day all by itself. I cannot even get the cowling off and on in less than 90 minutes. The Cub is dirtbag simple. You do have to clean it, which takes some time, in addition to all the other things.

    I have heard that in order to inspect wheel bearings you need to clean and repack them. Yearly. Not going to argue with that except to say that losing a wheel bearing in a car on the freeway would be a lot more catastrophic.

    Again, it is the paperwork that drives the cost up. Get all the ADs lined up in one spot with dates and page numbers, and get all major alterations documented in one spot with source of data (Field Approval, STC, 43-13) right next to the date on the 337. Then you reduce the thousand dollar paperwork cost by an order of magnitude. You might expect last year's IA to remember all that, but if he didn't make an easily understood list, he won't remember, and will have to repeat the exercise. My lists get transcribed into the most recent logbooks. They are not on loose printouts.
    If i have a competent owner/ helper and it's a cub i have annualed before we can get it done in a day. Most of the owners grease the bearings when they change from skis to wheels so that saves time. It works out good when they can take the cowl off and covers, i can inspect and move on while they put the covers on. Like you said the muffler AD is a PITA. Swing the engine, and usually find something cracked. I've even had some owners lubricate the airplane during the year and it was just an INSPECTION. That was kind of nice.
    Likes Hardtailjohn, WWhunter liked this post

  30. #30

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    7,564
    Post Thanks / Like
    I lubricate at 25 hours. Did two last week. Partner hates it - oil streaks. Still, I am the guy who has the bushing pushing kit, and I am hoping not to use it again.
    Likes RaisedByWolves liked this post

  31. #31
    windy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    777
    Post Thanks / Like
    I had a mechanic recently say, after he signed off my Cub’s annual… “gee, there’s not much to look at on a Cub…”. And that’s coming from the most competent mechanic in the area.
    I suggested he take a look at Steve Pierce’s videos.


    Sent from my iPhone using SuperCub.Org

  32. #32
    WWhunter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Laporte, Minnesota and the white sandy beaches of NW Florida
    Posts
    1,528
    Post Thanks / Like
    Time for me to put in a kind word for those shops/mechanics that do these 'cheap' annuals, with a caveat. I see nothing wrong with them as long as they have done a proper inspection. For the shop/mechanic that will do an owner assist annual, I can easily see a lot of valuable time being saved if the owner does most of the work. Under the mechanics guidance of course.

    I doubt I am an anomaly, but the type of owner that tries his best to maintain and keep up on any issues that arise, can save his mechanic from devoting his time to the fix/repair. There are many of us owners that wouldn't be flying if we weren't able to cut costs on maintenance bills by doing the work ourselves. This all being done under the watchful eye of your A/P of course.

    I'm fairly confident in fixing most any mechanical issue that arises and have an IA that trusts and knows my abilities. I will explain to him exactly what I have done and how I accomplished it. He looks at my work and will suggest any corrections if needed. He has mentioned that I should just go take the tests for my A/P (he will vouch for my experience).

    To reiterate, if it weren't for these shops that help out some of us, there would be a lot less owners out there.
    Don't take life too seriously ... no one gets out alive!
    Thanks cubdriver2 thanked for this post

  33. #33

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Soldotna, Alaska
    Posts
    928
    Post Thanks / Like
    This discussion references a subject that is as old as dirt. When guys started “mobile repair services” out of their trucks in Alaska I remember the shops that had higher overhead trying to get them kicked off the airport. Some did good work, some were pencil whippers. Some shops do good work, some are pencil whippers. I paid $110 per hour shop rate for my car the other day, so I won’t bitch about paying a competent mechanic a living wage. That said, it is free enterprise and if 2 people agree on a price and the parameters, it’s between them. When I was meeting with potential air taxi customers years ago that would tell me our competitor was cheaper, I’d always say that they knew what their product was worth, and were likely overcharging at that....
    Last edited by mam90; 06-30-2021 at 08:45 AM.
    Likes BC12D-4-85, Hardtailjohn, skukum12 liked this post

  34. #34
    hotrod180's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Port Townsend, WA
    Posts
    3,616
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by DENNY View Post
    My comment was not directed at anyone in particular. Just trying to point out that people complain of the price of an annual inspection without noting how much repair work or maintenance was also done at the time.
    DENNY
    I had a friend who used to bitch that the annual on his clipper always took a month and cost 2 or 3 thousand bucks.
    I pointed out to him how many times during the year a squawk came up,
    and he'd said "we'll take care of that at the annual".
    OTOH I take care of squawks on my airplane as they come up,
    do most all the maintenance items myself, and assist the mechanic during the inspection,
    and my annuals have always gone pretty quick & been pretty cheap.
    Cessna Skywagon-- accept no substitute!
    Thanks WWhunter thanked for this post

  35. #35

    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    29
    Post Thanks / Like
    Steve I did not call or talk to the shop that was inspecting the A model cub with the standard fuselage. I did a pre buy inspection and recommend they look further. It sold and was wrecked not long after. May be it will will rebuilt correctly this time around. It’s a small world in aviation, my experience is most mechanics don’t take criticism very well. I couldn’t agree more that we all look at things differently and can find something we don’t like or consider un airworthy. It’s up to the owner and the mechanic to decide this. To many people who think they know what there doing is ok but if your doing things that need to be directly supervised by the AP/IA you should not be doing that without supervision. Let’s say there is 3 FBO’s on your airport. You do a per purchase inspection on a plane the other guy has been inspecting for years. You find some things that need addressed. Most of the time this doesn’t go well. I never say it’s un airworthy but should be taken care of. If you say it’s un airworthy and call the mechanic or the FAA it starts a conflict. Thank you all for your comments even if I don’t agree with everyone. A 300$ annual is just not a living wage and when all the old guys like myself are gone your gonna pay one way or another. I think a 100hr or every 2 years would be sufficient for inspection criteria for non commercial aircraft. But I count on the yearly income from the inspections I do to stay in business. The other repairs and things that brake I count on as well. You have to like all the opinions and advice on this web site, it’s invaluable! I knew this would stir things up and I liked that! I hope all the AP/IA’s realize we need to get the younger people involved in aviation. I cut my teeth pumping fuel and started working for a mechanic at my airport. It changed my life for the better and I think I have shared that with a few but not enough. Do you recall the guy who let you take your friends up in a 206 just asked you put fuel back in it. Or the Luscombe that needed work and you volunteered your time so you could fly it. The IA got paid but I had to crawl down the tail and buck the rivets on the new horizontal stabilizer bracket. My good old friend paid for the parts, exhaust system and more so a few stupid kids could fly it. The owner eventually took it apart and took it home because he would come out to fly and his plane was gone because someone else was flying it. He didn’t maintain it and had let it go until it got flyable again. You supercub.org guys are a hoot to say the least. Hope to meet up and hang out sometime. Life is good but even better in a good old or new supercub. Keep up the good work dudes!

  36. #36
    NoFlaps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2020
    Posts
    110
    Post Thanks / Like
    Your comments above mention the exact things I am very blest to do now. That is, do grunt work for an aging AP/IA year round in return for an annual that allows me to be able to afford to fly my Supercub.


    Sent from my iPhone using SuperCub.Org
    Likes Supercub Works liked this post

  37. #37

    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    29
    Post Thanks / Like
    That’s how I learn best, hands on, make a mistake and figure out how to make it right! I learned and was taught on the job. An AP school gives you a broader spectrum but I learned working and recovering aircraft that I work on now. I have to admit a do work with a few people who are more than capable to work on there own aircraft and oversee and inspect there work. I do trades and discounts as I see fit. As for a regular customer I do list my flat rate and show a discount if appropriate as another person has said in previous response to this post. Some people just respect and understand what it takes to be a AMT and they make the best customers weather or not they are charged full shop/flat rate or not. I just will never understand why people have no problem paying for there high end or exotic car to get fixed or serviced but the AMT charges less and has much more liability. It just doesn’t make sense. You will never be asked or able to help or be in the shop at a dealership or high end FBO. It’s a tough business and the big time FBO’s are more of a production environment not a personal relationship. You see and hear the planes you work on and it means allot when your respected by your customers. When one doesn’t come home you feel it, you know them you have to know you did your best and care about the job you did.

  38. #38

    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Down low in the hills of Vermont USA
    Posts
    1,738
    Post Thanks / Like
    We have a 172 owner on the field, he is proud that he has a powerplant cert, yet no airframe cert. Each time he has a sticking valve he needs to borrow tools from me.
    He flies the plane out for it's annual each year and proudly says he uses a different IA each year. "So it has fresh eyes on it" Yet he and the plane are not gone more than a handful of hours, never an overnight.
    The plane also sits the full winter season which is rather long here.
    He has offered that I can fly his plane when I want to, I have never wanted too. I will not even ride with him.
    I doubt he pays much over $300.

  39. #39

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Soldotna, Alaska
    Posts
    928
    Post Thanks / Like
    A couple of years ago I went to a small service station near my home to get a state inspection on my truck. Their sign said “State Inspection Stickers $40”. They told me it would be a few minutes before they could get to it. I went across the street for a coffee, and a few minutes later I watched a man go out, open the door and place the sticker on the inside of the windshield. Done. It occurred to me that their sign was literal, and I got what I paid for.

  40. #40
    texmex's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Hanging Rock, Australia.
    Posts
    366
    Post Thanks / Like
    This thread reminds me of my extensive reading of BeechTalk.

    There was the camp who vented over the quality of maintenance/repairs or were absolutely indignant if say a screwdriver got left in the engine bay. (Yes FOD can be fatal but the mechanic is human)

    And the other group who were enraged at the expense of maintaining a Bonanza.

    I often wondered how many were in both camps.

    This reminds me of the story Steve Piece told sometime back. When he started in the warbird scene airline pilots were among some of the owners. When he left it was only the 1 percenters. (correct me if my memory is wrong there Steve)

    I can see similar price pressure on GA aircraft in the current era. The older they get the more man-hours or dollars they consume. The only way I can partake is have that airline pilot job AND pour a heap of my own time into it also. I went and got my airframe license to give me some knowledge. But I wouldn't do it unless I truely enjoyed it.

    I do employ engineers and I guess the workload between them and myself on my current referb is 50/50. I'm truely amazed at how much money these things can consume. As a kid my Dad had several aircraft and I never gave the expense of it a second thought.

Similar Threads

  1. Things you see doing an annual
    By evroosevelt in forum Cafe Supercub
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 02-12-2017, 07:02 PM
  2. I need an annual on my Cub
    By RandyZ in forum Super Cub Repair Facilities
    Replies: 31
    Last Post: 07-10-2016, 07:17 PM
  3. 1st Annual Fly-in
    By sherylvanslyke in forum Cafe Supercub
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 07-16-2009, 05:39 AM
  4. Annual turned up bad 0-320 150 hp.
    By marinelubricants in forum Cafe Supercub
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 03-17-2005, 10:00 PM

Bookmarks

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
  •