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HeliTorque :: View topic - Is it worth buying a helicopter?
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HeliTorque Forum Index » Student Pilots & Hour Builders

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Is it worth buying a helicopter?
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siamkidd
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 9:46 am    Post subject: Is it worth buying a helicopter? Reply with quote

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Hi there, may be a bit of a stupid question, but is it worth buying an R22 to offset the costs of hour building? Would any school be willing to lease it from me, so that way they'd take care of all the maintenance etc and then i'd only have to pay for fuel whenever i wanted to fly...has anyone else dipped their fingers in this area before?
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veeany
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did this years ago.

Don't work under the misconception that if you lease it out the maintenance bills are no longer your problem, I am sure one must exist but I have never seen a school that hires an aircraft and pays for the maintenance.

You end up buying, insuring, maintaining (or paying the costs of) and sometimes fuelling the machine it just depends on the deal you have with them.

Most schools want to pay a fixed cost to hire in so they know they can make a theoretical profit on selling hours, why do you think most schools use someone elses helicopters, if they or their students hurt it you end up paying the bill unless it becomes an insurance claim, and even then some schools have written into their contracts that you claim on your hull insurance for anything they do.

I did ok out of it because I used my machine to get into flying instruction and I came with the machine usually so no worries if I broke it, I paid for it.

Some will treat like they are doing you a favour by putting hours on it for you.

If you do it make sure you tie up the financials very well beforehand.

GS
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siamkidd
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 11:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your input Gary, much appreciated...it's something i'm definitely going to think long and hard about!
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siamkidd
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 11:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, what helo did you buy? And what were the costs? No worries if this is too personal a question...
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veeany
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I bought two R22s

One in 1999 cost 55K with about 1000hrs left I think, one in 2001 cost 20K with about 200hrs left.

I sold the 55K one to a good guy up north who had just had his R22 rolled over by the school that I learnt at. I sold it the month the component lives were extended and it got about 200hrs added to its life so the value went up.

The 20K one needed blades which cost 8K but where saleable at the end of its short life before rebuild. Flew all the hours off it, sold it for 18K with the old spindles on and sold the blades for about 6.5K.

Cost 3.5K + 100hr + 2 * 50hr inspections to have 200hrs of flight time, + fuel + insurance of course.

That said I was lucky each time, I nearly hired the 2nd one to a school that had had a rollover accident, the CFI of the school I worked at questioned whether it was sensible and at the same time found some work for it and I. A few weeks later the other school rolled their replacement over, I guess he was right.

If you get lucky and don't get ripped off, and don't have any unexpected maintenance bills then you can break even or make a bit, but like I said the companies tend to see the owners coming and will set themselves up for a money earning deal which is usually in their favour, if you own it get the deal you want or don't rent it out if you cannot.

GS
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TJ
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 1:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would be very interested in leasing or block buying some hours on a R44 ClipperII/RavenII - I am thinking of anything in the range 25 - 200 hrs per year, and ideally based at Denham......If there are any owners out there that this appeals to please PM with details.

TJ
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siamkidd
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would also be interested in leasing an R22 or R44. East Anglia and Gloucestershire area...
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WhirlyGirl
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 30, 2010 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you are going to buy an R22 to lease back to a school let me know as we're always looking for R22s at Helicentre. We do somewhere between 400 and 600 hours per year per machine, sometimes more.

Sarah
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