Curious to get the benefit of others' experiences...
Here is my dream: I have wanted to fly for 50 years (currently 56) ever since my dad used to take me to the playground and fly is rubber-powered monsters and his dizzy control-line buzz bombs. I've tried RC a couple of times and its just too torturous, not seeing space come at you from the front. To me, LSA is a godsend... I actually have a gleam of hope that this could possibly happen. If I could fly into Oshkosh once and pitch a tent under the wing, I think I'd babble like a blubbering idiot.
I'm not a wealthy guy... I don't even have a 401K anymore (it tanked) and I'm totally OK with working until the end. Retirement would be boring anyway. But, I can skim off enough of my paycheck to afford something like the cost of a Toyota Camry. My '06 Honda Element is almost paid off, and it will run forever in the land of no rust. (TX.)
I've read Rinker Buck about 10 times, Stick and Rudder, and just finished America By Air. I bought a glider flight for my wife 13 years ago, and I'll never forget that beautiful, simple yellow cub dragging that glider up into the sky. I look at some of these cub kits, and it just amazes me that something that was so cheap and reliable 75 years ago can cost so much now... and, that's just the boxes of parts. I wonder who the heck would even bother. The Texas Cub for example: 40K, FWB, not including anything extra, like fabric and paint. I realize we all gotta make a profit, but holy cow!! Maybe they only sell 2 or 3 a year?
So, I'm looking at Zenith STOL CH750. Looks like its around 14K for the basic kit, 4K for the "finishing kit", and then whatever the FWF costs are. I am currently 70% complete with a William Wynne Corvair conversion, using all new jugs, new forged pistons, nitrided crank, new cam, etc. etc. so there's another 3-4K. I figure that will put me right around 25K after adding a prop and a couple of elemental VFR gauges. Right around the cost of a Camry, unless I'm missing something here.
So, if my plans work out, I'll keep my '06 Honda Element until the wheels fall off, and by the time I finish building this thing I'll have my LSA hours in. A buddy of mine who is a test pilot for the FAA said he'd fly it off for me.
As far as building stuff goes, I am completely unintimidated by mechanics and metal. I had my first erector set at 3, and momma told me that when I was about 4, I disassembled her Singer sewing machine, and she said I got phillips screws out that even she couldn't budge. So the Zenith looks like something I can handle. It even resembles my beloved Cub to some degree... and maybe a tail-dragger wouldn't be a good choice anyway. They say it's hard to find instructors that even do them anymore... and, I don't even know if they are LSA compliant.
Am I being realistic? Or - should I save my money and do a "timeshare" or something else? Is it worth it?
Thanks in advance...