My major interests and career include piano tuning, aircraft piloting, and nature walking. My talented wife made the chain-linked armor.
Do you dream of flying but can't afford a regular airplane? If so the Ultralight might be something to consider. This aircraft is lightweight and flies slowly. You cannot fly it above the speed of 55 knots. And no night flying either.
Because of its size and low air speed, the Ultralight is not regulated the same as other aircraft. The FAA does not require a license to fly a single person Ultralight. However, it does have to meet certain standards for this type of plane.
To qualify as a Ultralight it has to be a wing aircraft with one or two seats. If it is a two seater than the FAA requires a Sports Pilot Certificate. The weight of the aircraft cannot be over 254 pounds.
No flying over populated areas. In other words, stay away from cities and towns.
The motto is that you should never fly any higher than you want to fall. There is some truth to that because ultralights do crash sometimes. Our neighbor's father was killed in one. The wing fell off the aircraft that he was using to instruct a student and they both were killed. This really sobered up the folks that live in our valley. Many here are pilots and it is common to see different types of aircraft flying overhead, including Ultralights.
Tips for Buying a Ultralight
- A new single seat Ultralight usually starts out at around $9,000 and can go much higher. You can find used ones for a lot less. But be wary of wear and tear.
- Look the aircraft over for cracks in the engine and rubber mounts.
- Check cables for stretching and fraying.
- Is there old fuel left in the gas tank? The engine could be damaged if you start it in that condition. Completely drain the fuel and clean the system.
- Have the owner fly the craft while you watch from the ground. Many accidents happen on a pilot's first flight of a new aircraft.
- When you are test flying, watch that the aircraft can fly itself in a straight line without having to hold it in place.
- Was the aircraft build by an amateur? If so watch out!
- Before buying get the proper training.
Freedom in the Sky
Ultralight Aircraft for Sale
When choosing which ultralight to buy keep in mind your wants and budget. These small aircraft can range from a kite or trike, powered parachute to a fully outfitted mini airplane.
The kite is probably the cheapest but unless it has it’s own engine, you need launch from a mountain or some high place to get into the air.
The powered parachute can take off most anywhere and can be easily stored in your garage. However, the rule of never flying higher than you want to fall is a factor when flying one of these. The weather has to be calm when flying.
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Types of Ultralights
When deciding on which one to buy look at the different types and see which one would fit your lifestyle and budget. Here is a short list of ultralights. There are much more than this that you can check out.
The photos on this article show this type of ultralight. These have the kite above and the motor and rider below.
Mini airplane. Can look just like a tiny airplane or have airplane type winds above with the rider and motors below like a trike or kite.
Has a parachute above with a person sitting below in a harness with the motor and wheels.
This is the typical one that has to use a mountain to fly from. You jump off the cliff or run down a slope to get into the air.