Airplane Ownership 2nd Edition

14 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0071459747
ISBN-10: 007145974X
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Frequently Bought Together

Airplane Ownership + Illustrated Buyer's Guide to Used Airplanes + Plane Sense: A Beginner's Guide to Owning and Operating Private Aircraft FAA-H-8083-19A
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Get your first plane!

Here, Ron Wanttaja walks you through the exciting process of shopping for, then acquiring and caring for your first airplane. Featuring lots of new information and photographs, this second edition includes the Light Sport category and Sports Pilot license, and emphasizes how to minimize cost of ownership for a wide range of planes. Aviation journalist Wanttaja, winner of the 1992 Aviation/Space Writers' Association Award of Excellence, guides you through every step -- before and after your purchase.

Expert guidance on:

  • Prices and real-world operating expenses
  • Cutting the costs of plane ownership
  • Sizing up planes, from modern to antiques, used to partially completed homebuilts
  • Privileges and limitations of the Light Sport Aircraft category
  • Renting vs. owning; partnerships and leasebacks
  • Pitfalls to avoid
  • Preownership inspections―avoiding getting burned
  • Paperwork needed to buy and register aircraft
  • Getting financing and the right insurance
  • Updated owner inspection and maintenance procedures―what you can and can't do, illustrated

With real ownership case histories for old and modern aircraft

About the Author

Ronald J. Wanttaja is an award-winning aviation writer and a former systems engineer with Boeing, who worked in satellite orbit/constellation design and analysis, launch vehicle and onboard propulsion system trades, and operations concepts for space systems. He worked on the early design studies for the International Space Station. An Air Force veteran, he was an on-duty operator for the Defense Support Program missile early-warning satellite. As a freelance aviation journalist, he has written for Private Pilot, Flying, Sport Aviation, Flight Line, Kitplanes, and other publications. He is author of the book Kit Airplane Construction, Third Edition, also from McGraw-Hill. His aviation writing has won several prizes, including Flying Magazine's "Bax Seat Trophy" and a journalism award from the Aviation/Space Writer's Association. Mr. Wanttaja has also written and published historical fiction.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 315 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education; 2 edition (December 20, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 007145974X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071459747
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 0.9 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #104,702 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 11, 1998
Format: Paperback
This book helps narrow down the field as you consider buying or owning an airplane. Gives details about cost and offers real world examples of operating expenses (aircraft specification tables were particulary helpful). Covers what to look for, pre-purchase inspections, and paperwork needed to buy and register aircraft. Well worth the money if you're considering buying your first airplane.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By John Matlock on May 2, 2006
Format: Paperback
Simply put, if you're even thinking of buying an airplane you should buy this book first. This book reeks of experience. It's by Ron Wanttaja, who received the 1992 Aviation/Space Writers' Association Award of Excellence. He's an excellent writer and is very knowledgable about owning an airplane. All aspects of owning a plane from deciding what to buy to the real world operating expenses, the new Light Sport Aircraft category, inspections, everything.

The tone of the book is on saving money. He talks for instance about setting a limit of $30K for the purchase of a plane. He talks about the costs of a tie down vs a hanger and gives examples from his local area which is around Seattle. You may not have the financial issues as a primary concern, but many of the same subjects apply without regard to their cost -- what to look for when you inspect a used plane for instance.

I'd list the chapters in the book, but think it's better to just say that every aspect you can think of (and more) is here. And, oh yes, this is the new second edition of the book that updates the information on a lot of areas.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Glen Dresback on January 2, 2004
Format: Paperback
This book is an informative, easy to read, engaging look at buying and owning an aircraft. It walks you right through the different types available, and explains many of the advantages and pitfalls of the different types (antique, classic, homebuilt, modern, etc) of aircraft available. It goes on to explain what you can and can't do in owner maintanance. This book shows how to do what you can do, with photos and illustrations to back up the text in many instances. Overall, of all the airplane ownership books I've got, this is the one that I keep coming back to, it's well done, interesting, and informative!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Pen Name on October 16, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is very informative and a easy read. It goes through a many different ascepts of the buying and owning process. I would highly reccomend this book to get informed before buying n airplane. I thought I had my mind made up on the type airplane I was going to buy. After reading this book I changed my mind.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By T. Little on July 15, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book covers a lot of stuff in just enough depth to answer most questions a first time aircraft buyer might have. I had probably figured out 80% of the content on my own before getting the book; however, it was a great read and confirmed what I already knew and presented a few things I didn't know. It gives me enough to pursue some topics in more depth via other books or web searches. I'm pleased with my choice and feel it was a great value.

I disagree with some remarks about the book being focused on being cheap about flying. There's a lot of people out there that have an interest in aviation and just assume you must be wealthy to own an aircraft - this book shows that's not true, and that there are several ownership options that can get you flying, even on a modest income. The contents of this book are not something you'll hear from your local FBO or CFI in most cases.

I've seen other reviews about the pricing data being overly optimistic or out of date. Get real - this isn't a website being updated real-time. It's a BOOK that was published at a point in time. Buy the latest edition and note the publishing date so you have perspective on the time-relevant content. Even if the values are a bit off, the concepts remain valid. Given the poor ecomony lately, the pricing figures in this 2005 edition are actually not too far off :-D
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By C. Berg on March 17, 2007
Format: Paperback
I picked this book up at the local library while I was looking for my first plane. After using up all my renewals and continually referring to it, I had to buy. It goes into much more detail than other books about what to expect during and after purchase.
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Format: Paperback
I bought this book prior to purchasing an airplane, read it then put it on the shelf and promptly forgot about it. Now, after owning a plane for 2 years have rediscovered the book and upon review can validate the authors thoroughness and careful selection of subject matter to cover. He did a great job. Most topics covered are still accurate today and very relevant to me as an aircraft owner of two years. Where the book could use a refresh is of course in the cost info cited as well as an update related to availability of information on the internet.
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