Checking out an Avid

33 posts in this topic

Posted

Hi there,

I am interested in an Avid which I found on Internet. I plan to check it out sometime soon. I am mechanically inclined, but I have never built an aircraft, and have never flown an Avid. I plan to bring a pilot friend with me, but he hasn't flown an Avid either, nor is he a builder. The aircraft looks good on photo, and is flying. Is there any particular areas we should pay attention to?

Thanks a lot for your suggestions.

Adam

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Posted

Avids are nice sporty airplanes.  They are light and nimble.  More like a sports car compared to a family sedan when compared to a heavier GA airplane.  They will make you pay attention on the ground, especially on pavement if it's a taildragger.  Obviously look at over all condition.  Look to see if there is any indication of rot on the extended ribs that act as flaperon hangers.  Is it a 2 stroke? What model?   JImChuk

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Posted

Adam, Joey Myers lives near you and knows a ton about these planes. He is out of town right now but I will let him know you are looking at an Avid. He has two. He most likely knows of the bird you're looking at.  I'll have him post here and you guys can take it from there.

Good luck and welcome. 

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Posted (edited)

Please post a link. Beware of pics! You have a lot of homework to do if your seriously considering buying an experimental plane. Unlike their factory built counterparts every single Avid out there is unique and has an unlimited amount of variables. First question. What is it you want to do with the plane and hope to accomplish by buying it? This will set the stage for many other questions. Sorry I'm not trying to make the process too intimidating but your initial post is very very vague. We need to know year built, engine, hours, model, speed or STOL wing, etc in order to help. 

Joey

Edited by C5Engineer
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Posted

Joey, I figured you would respond before I told you....lol. I never know when to text you when you are out of town. 

Adam, Joey is correct. I bought an Avid from California last June. I had another friend do a prebuy inspection on it and it was determined to be in close to flying condition. I hauled it home and set in to cleaning and inspecting. To make a long story short I finally got that plane in the air three weeks ago after four months of fixing little stuff I found. There are a lot of factors to consider when buying what we refer to as a “Barn Find or Hangar Queen”. 

Ill shoot you my email and phone number. If you want to know more send me an email or call me. 

Vance 

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Posted

One thing about a pre buy, especially on an experimental, is everyone sees things differently.  What might seem just fine to one person may not be to another.  I've changed things on every experimental I've owned after I got it home.  They had flown for varying amounts of time the way they were, but I didn't like them that way myself.  JImChuk

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Posted (edited)

Hi Jim, Joey, Vance,

Thanks so much for the feedback. This forum is so helpful.

A bit about myself, I am new to flying. I have taken about 8 hours of flight lesson on a Champ so far. I liked low and slow kind of flying, and the idea of being able to land off-field really appeals to me. So I have set my eyes on Avid and Kitfox, and planned to buy one after I got my light sport license on the Champ. Things does not quite go as planned. The champ I am taking lesson on had an accident and is totaled (on ground accident, and luckily nobody is hurt). So I am facing a choice of continuing my lesson on C172 or I am thinking moving my purchase plan forward.

So here are the aircraft I am considering,

https://www.barnstormers.com/classified_1259058_Avid+MK+IV+Speedwing%2C2008+ELSA.html

Since it is in Southern Cal that's fairly close to San Diego, so I have contacted the seller and got some pictures. I am thinking about come up to take a look. I'd love to get some help from you guys. Am I crazy buying an airplane at this stage of learning to fly, or should I go with the C172 to get my license first (it will have to be a private license on C172 and takes longer)? I am mechanically inclined and consider myself pretty handy (being fixing my car for many years, playing around with lathe, mill, etc., built my own CNC router, 3D printers). But for my work schedule, I probably don't have much time to work on the airplane at this time, so I am definitely looking for something ready to fly.

What I like about this Avid is that it has 4-stroke Jabiru engine, and seems to be in good condition. It is built in 2008, and the seller told me that he is the 3rd owner. 145 hrs is a bit low, but the seller told me that he has another airplane and is looking at getting rid of one. Also, it is close enough that I can trailer it home since I don't have a license to fly it. Your ideas and thoughts are very much appreciated.

Adam

Edited by AFlyer

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Posted

Adam,

If you have an instructor willing to teach in your plane it makes the most sense to buy your own plane to learn in.  Why pay rental fee that you will never get back.  The instructor probably will require dual brakes and will have to fly your plane solo for XX hours before he can instruct in said plane unless he already has time in that make and model I think.  I could be wrong, but I know that has been an issue for some in the past.  Either way, I think it was 3-5 hrs the instructor needed when I checked into it for a float rating. 

As Jim said each looks at a plane differently.  Some may never consider putting a gorilla tape patch on a plane.. I don't have an issue with it :lol:  There is a difference between safe to fly and being anally perfect.  Growing up flying here in AK I have seen and flown a lot of really tired beat up planes that most lower 48 pilots would never dream of getting into so my views are a bit skewed.  Bottom line is, I would see if there is an EAA guy in the area that would check it out for you if you cant find another Avid driver close.  I know some damn good AP around here that don't want anything to do with the experimentals because they are just too busy to take the time to learn what is acceptable for an EPX versus the certified they have been dealing with for 40 yrs.  Not that they are scared to work on or fly them, they just don't fully understand us being able to do mods etc without a stack of STC's and red tape they are used to having to deal with. 

:BC:

 

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Posted

A speed wing may not be the best choice for off field landings.  Higher stall speed and such.  I've put about 450 hrs on a Jabiru engined equitp Avid Flyer.  Before serial # 450 may be good to stay away from and the early hydraulic lifter engines (somewheres after #1850 or so.  Latest engines seem to be very good. I have a solid lifter engine # 903.  JImChuk

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Posted

That particular airplane has been listed multiple times for sale over the past year. Not sure why but........usually there's a reason. The "good" ones typically sell very quickly.

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Posted

That particular airplane has been listed multiple times for sale over the past year. Not sure why but........usually there's a reason. The "good" ones typically sell very quickly.

Maybe it's because of the short wings and Jab engine - like a nose dragger -  some folks don't want what I might like.  I don't know anything about the plane except what has been written here.  ???  EDMO

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Posted

I have some pictures that the seller sent me, including one with weight and balance sheet. I am not sure if it is fair to share it in public here. But I can send those in private message to people here who can help me checking if there is something of concern.

Thanks,

Adam

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Posted (edited)

I have some pictures that the seller sent me, including one with weight and balance sheet. I am not sure if it is fair to share it in public here. But I can send those in private message to people here who can help me checking if there is something of concern.

Thanks,

Adam

Adam,  Our "Public" is the around 1200 AFF members spread out all over the world.  Posting here probably wont get you any competition on the buy, but might get you some valuable info from guys and a gal who know a lot about these birds.  We don't always agree, but most have their 2 cents worth to add.  EDMO

Edited by EDMO

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Posted

Thanks, Edmo.

I am not concerned about competition. Indeed, if it is on Barnstomer, it is probably seen by everyone who wants to buy anyway.

What I was concerned is that those pictures were sent to me by the seller through private communication. So I take those pictures are private for my personal consideration only. I feel comfortable to share with my friends who help me with my decision, but not sure if it is fair to the seller to post this on a public forum for everyone (including those who has not registered) to see. I am just respecting the seller's privacy.

Sort like a dating game, we can talk and share pictures. I may show those to my friends. But to post it on a public forum is different, which I felt a bit uncomfortable to do though we are not talking about a person here.

Adam

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Posted (edited)

Thanks, Edmo.

I am not concerned about competition. Indeed, if it is on Barnstomer, it is probably seen by everyone who wants to buy anyway.

What I was concerned is that those pictures were sent to me by the seller through private communication. So I take those pictures are private for my personal consideration only. I feel comfortable to share with my friends who help me with my decision, but not sure if it is fair to the seller to post this on a public forum for everyone (including those who has not registered) to see. I am just respecting the seller's privacy.

Sort like a dating game, we can talk and share pictures. I may show those to my friends. But to post it on a public forum is different, which I felt a bit uncomfortable to do though we are not talking about a person here.

Adam

Maybe one of the more knowledgeable Avid guys will take time to do that with you.  I mostly know Kitfox, and I am a Maverick designer / builder anyway.  EDMO

Edited by EDMO

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Posted

Edmo,

Marverick? Do you mean Murphy Marverick? That's a cool airplane too. Much respect. Maybe you can at least spare a few minutes to take a peek and help me with some ideas.

Thanks,

Adam

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Posted

Edmo,

Marverick? Do you mean Murphy Marverick? That's a cool airplane too. Much respect. Maybe you can at least spare a few minutes to take a peek and help me with some ideas.

Thanks,

Adam

I am usually very accommodating, but my situation and Avid knowledge is not good.  Got to pass on this one.  Sorry.  There are some Avid guys on here who know about Jab engines too - I don't.  No, not Murphy - just Maverick according to some!  ;<)  EDMO

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Posted

Hi Adam,  you can send the pics to me in a private email, and I'll give you my opinion.   That and 75 cents will get you a senior coffee at McDonalds.  :lmao:  Do you have the engine serial # as well?  JImChuk

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Posted

Thanks a lot, Jim. I guess I will have to hold on to it for a while before I can get that price. :) I will check on the serial number with the seller.

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Posted

A big factor is the useful load, which is of course the difference between the empty weight and the max gross weight. Many car engine Avids have very high empty weight, which limits the useful load. For a typical C model with a 2 stroke Rotax 582,  the useful load might be about 450 to 480 lbs, for a Mark 4 it might be around 580 to 600 lbs. That means two 180 pounders and lots of gas is permitted. There are some auto engined Avids with 350 lbs useful load or even less, which makes it practically a one person airplane..

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Posted

New student pilot training in an E-AB taildragger WILL be very costly from an insurance viewpoint. Maybe even impossible, as the aviation insurance co's only agree from time to time when they need to add risk to their insured pools to meet required minimums.  The ins. co. WILL require your instructor to have hours in type (10hrs min. in my case, IIRC). I succeeded with a KF3 TD , and then also got reasonable ins. for a KF4 TD before a CFI w/ 10,000hrs bent my Grove gear... which came out of my pocket after the CFI suddenly disappeared. Both EAA and NAFI provide flight insurance to CFI's training in experimental aircraft, I believe that includes their own as well as your aircraft. I recommend you ask if they provide their own ins. that takes precedence over your owner policy in the event of damage when they are PIC. Like many auto ins. co's, one aviation claim can follow you for years and cause higher premiums.

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Posted

feel free to shoot me the pics as well and I will look them over.

:BC:

 

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Posted

New student pilot training in an E-AB taildragger WILL be very costly from an insurance viewpoint. Maybe even impossible, as the aviation insurance co's only agree from time to time when they need to add risk to their insured pools to meet required minimums.  The ins. co. WILL require your instructor to have hours in type (10hrs min. in my case, IIRC). I succeeded with a KF3 TD , and then also got reasonable ins. for a KF4 TD before a CFI w/ 10,000hrs bent my Grove gear... which came out of my pocket after the CFI suddenly disappeared. Both EAA and NAFI provide flight insurance to CFI's training in experimental aircraft, I believe that includes their own as well as your aircraft. I recommend you ask if they provide their own ins. that takes precedence over your owner policy in the event of damage when they are PIC. Like many auto ins. co's, one aviation claim can follow you for years and cause higher premiums.

insurance?  oh yeah, I forgot, you folks down south can actually afford it.  The premiums I was quoted made me shit my pants then I laughed.  I am not going to pay for a new plane every 5 yrs in premiums..

:BC:

 

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Posted

Lol, who said I could afford it? As a business owner I wanted/needed the liability coverage, didn't care so much about the hull. Pretty glad I had hull coverage though when I bent the KF3, the ins. co actually made me buy it. I bot the salvage and walked away making money on that one. I would still recommend a new student or very low time pilot insure for both hull and liability until they get some time with their plane. 

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Posted

Good point about the insurance! I need to check that out to see if it makes that much sense financially. 

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