September 2007 Issue
No Longer Available: Parts are Getting Scarce
You can still support almost anything flying, but for some older models, you’ll wait months for some parts. Here’s how to cope when the parts shelf is bare.
For those of us to whom a half-million bucks for a new airplane is a non-starter, older airframes—maybe 40-year-old airframes—are the only option. And even those can cost the better part of $100,000. For that kind of money, a would-be buyer assumes these expensive purchases will be supportable with parts, accessories and upgrades for the foreseeable future. And for the most part, a telephone call and a credit card payment are all that’s needed to get a specific part to your mechanic in a matter of days, if not hours. But that isn’t always true and it may become less true as our airplanes get older. And even when a part is available, in some cases you may find that the hit to the credit card is breathtaking, if not prohibitive.
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