Beater Cherokee

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dodgeram2500
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Beater Cherokee

Post by dodgeram2500 »

Looked at a beater in the pouring rain the other day. When I pulled the backseat and looked at the spar, i noticed about 1/16" of water. The insulation in the spar looked dry. Is this normal on a Cherokee? I know some can have corrosion issues behind the fuel tanks. Also noticed a small amount of corrosion on the firewall and one spot where the paint flaked off on the wing skin. I don't have access to a hanger, so I don't want to buy something cosmetically nice right now. It would be a shame to let a nice plane sit outside. Are these issues deal breakers in your opinion on a budget aircraft? Thanks for all replies.

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lownslow
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by lownslow »

After Embry Riddle's recent spar failure, I'm not sure now is the best time to be buying a low wing Piper.
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J31
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by J31 »

dodgeram2500 wrote:
Mon Apr 30, 2018 11:29 am
Looked at a beater in the pouring rain the other day. When I pulled the backseat and looked at the spar, i noticed about 1/16" of water. The insulation in the spar looked dry. Is this normal on a Cherokee? I know some can have corrosion issues behind the fuel tanks. Also noticed a small amount of corrosion on the firewall and one spot where the paint flaked off on the wing skin. I don't have access to a hanger, so I don't want to buy something cosmetically nice right now. It would be a shame to let a nice plane sit outside. Are these issues deal breakers in your opinion on a budget aircraft? Thanks for all replies.
Water sitting in the structure is not a good sign. Corrosion on the firewall is not good. By your picture with the paint flecking off is really bad. There appears to be a lot of corrosion under the paint.

-How old?
-where is it sitting? Florida or Phoenix?
-have the SB's been done....how long ago?
-Engine times and corroision

No "Beater" airplane is a good idea unless you know exactly what to look for and get a REALLY good price. Even then honorable people would expect to spend a lot of cash to bring it up to a safe standard.

If that aircraft has as much corrosion as your three pictures indicate it could be worth nothing. I fact fixing and maintaining a beater could be more expensive than a well maintained aircraft.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-D5vCoWKgII

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7WHNw289csE
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lhalliday
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by lhalliday »

Make sure your pre-purchase inspection includes Service Bulletin 1006 (at least), inspection for spar corrosion. I'm surprised it's not an AD. This may not be the cause of the recent Embry-Riddle incident, but it's the same part of the plane.

My Beechcraft has an AD (73-20-07R2) for the brackets that attach the wing to the plane. Having those fail in flight could really ruin your day...

...laura who learned to fly in Cherokees
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dodgeram2500
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by dodgeram2500 »

Thanks for all the feedback. I did look at the logs but did not think to check for SBs/ADs. The seller said he has not had the tanks out of it in the 10+ years that he owned it. The plane has been in Quebec for as far back as I can tell. About 10,000 on the airframe, but roughly 100 on the prop and engine which were overhauled in 2004. Bird has been sitting since summer of 2017 when the annual expired. Basic Avionics, actually a nice interior. He wants $23k which is probably what he paid for the overhaul, lol. I'm trying to determine if it is worth spending the cash on a pre buy or just skip this one. He has a quote of just over 2k to annual it but I can't get a hold of the AME to ask him about the plane. Ideally my budget is 30k all in.

What is a pre buy worth these days??
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fish4life
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by fish4life »

dodgeram2500 wrote:
Mon Apr 30, 2018 4:41 pm
Thanks for all the feedback. I did look at the logs but did not think to check for SBs/ADs. The seller said he has not had the tanks out of it in the 10+ years that he owned it. The plane has been in Quebec for as far back as I can tell. About 10,000 on the airframe, but roughly 100 on the prop and engine which were overhauled in 2004. Bird has been sitting since summer of 2017 when the annual expired. Basic Avionics, actually a nice interior. He wants $23k which is probably what he paid for the overhaul, lol. I'm trying to determine if it is worth spending the cash on a pre buy or just skip this one. He has a quote of just over 2k to annual it but I can't get a hold of the AME to ask him about the plane. Ideally my budget is 30k all in.

What is a pre buy worth these days??
100 hours on an engine in 14 years = run away, judging by the overall condition on everything else I highly doubt that engine was stored correctly and probably has engine corrosion ad well.
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edmanster
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by edmanster »

All items discussed up are valid issues .. but they will not be the 'ones that kill' you. The rusty screws, flaking paint, & surface corrosion - all bad, but remember this is a non pressurized overbuilt aircraft.
The critical issues will be the cracked rubber fuel lines behind the tank inside the wing, cracked & chaffed electrical insulation, crud at the bottom of the fuel tanks, ... mouse piss corroding away some major fitting. Also do not forget magnetos impulse couplings falling apart & the seals & rubber firewall forward. Flight control hinges, seized pulleys, and corroded cables as well. Most electrical switches will be 'intermittent' from long periods of inactivity. Do i even have to mention about corroded cylinder walls & sticky valves .. After 10 years of inactivity .. I would revisit everything. Unless u know who completed the last check & signed of the Log book entries - revisit everything. BTW .. Nice home built project !
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PilotDAR
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by PilotDAR »

PM sent.
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JasonE
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by JasonE »

lhalliday wrote:
Mon Apr 30, 2018 1:21 pm
Make sure your pre-purchase inspection includes Service Bulletin 1006 (at least), inspection for spar corrosion. I'm surprised it's not an AD. This may not be the cause of the recent Embry-Riddle incident, but it's the same part of the plane.

My Beechcraft has an AD (73-20-07R2) for the brackets that attach the wing to the plane. Having those fail in flight could really ruin your day...

...laura who learned to fly in Cherokees
No corrosion was noted in the prelim report for that Embry incident. They did find similar cracks on the opposite side, the jury is still out on that plane. Could be awhile before we see the final report, but I don't believe it will be corrosion.

Loved my Cherokee, just sold it. Also learned to fly in it. We had the tanks pulled and spar checked last year. At min, I would stick a camera up inside the wing and look around. There is a proposed AD with the FAA already for installing inspection panels in the wings. Looking at those pictures you sent, I'd walk away unless the seller wants to do SB1006 & SB1304. I'd offer to pay more for the plane with those done.
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ScottS
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by ScottS »

dodgeram2500 wrote:
Mon Apr 30, 2018 4:41 pm
Thanks for all the feedback. I did look at the logs but did not think to check for SBs/ADs. The seller said he has not had the tanks out of it in the 10+ years that he owned it. The plane has been in Quebec for as far back as I can tell. About 10,000 on the airframe, but roughly 100 on the prop and engine which were overhauled in 2004. Bird has been sitting since summer of 2017 when the annual expired. Basic Avionics, actually a nice interior. He wants $23k which is probably what he paid for the overhaul, lol. I'm trying to determine if it is worth spending the cash on a pre buy or just skip this one. He has a quote of just over 2k to annual it but I can't get a hold of the AME to ask him about the plane. Ideally my budget is 30k all in.

What is a pre buy worth these days??
Skip, just based on price alone. $23K on a Cherokee 140 with that history is not a steal of a deal. To put it in perspective, my buddy sold his 140 with only 3500 hours, rough paint (but not as rough as that!), overhauled instruments, new prop and flown 60-80 hours a year for $30K. Tanks had been pulled too. 1200 on the engine, but it had been torn down for a prop strike recently and everything inspected.

There is no such thing as a cheap boat or airplane.
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Bede
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Re: Beater Cherokee

Post by Bede »

Set a price for a plane that you can afford. Then buy the nicest airplane at that price. Don't go and try to find the cheapest plane of a type that you like. It will be worthless.

For example, I know of a C180 on float for sale. $50k. Steal of a deal. Except it needs a new engine and prop. Now you're at $100k. And you still have a plane with very poor paint, interior, and avionics.
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