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Thread: No Logbook!

  1. #1

    No Logbook!

    I'm looking at a Sierra.... the plane has no logbooks. In a dispute
    over a repair or annual its mechanic refused to return the logs and
    supposedly is holding them. The owner recently died and the plane is
    being sold by a nephew. My local repair establishment is looking over
    the plane to verify its AD's (and perform the missing ones.)
    My question:

    What % do I discount the offering price due to the absence of logbooks
    and records?

  2. #2
    I've heard numbers like 10-20% but I wouldn't buy the plane without the logbooks.

    I'd make the nephew resolve the issue and get the logbooks or walk away.

  3. #3

    No Logbook!

    >I'm looking at a Sierra.... the plane has no logbooks. In a dispute
    >over a repair or annual its mechanic refused to return the logs and
    >supposedly is holding them. The owner recently died and the plane is
    >being sold by a nephew. My local repair establishment is looking over
    >the plane to verify its AD's (and perform the missing ones.)
    >My question:
    >
    >What % do I discount the offering price due to the absence of logbooks
    >and records?

    I don't think there is a set percentage. But it should be in the 10-30% range, and you have a LOT of paperwork ahead of you.

    I'd suggest you talk with the shop that supposedly has them and ask what they'd SELL the books for, and if you can get a look at them in advance of buying the plane.

    It'd be worth every nickel of $5000 to have the logs.

    So look to arrange that in advance, and then negotiate the price with the nephew based on no logs, and buy the plane and the logs and have YOUR mechanic inspect the plane to compare its condition with the logs (which might be years out of date, depending on how long the dispute has been going on.

    --Bob Steward A&P IA
    Birmingham, AL

  4. #4
    You might try negotiating with the mechanic that is holding the log books "hostage." If you can't get the books, I'd be pretty careful. But if the plane checks out, shoot out an offer of 25-30% below asking price due to missing books.

    Chris

  5. #5

    [inbox] No Logbook!

    David - run quickly while there is still time! . If you get this plane
    without logs and as been said by others - you may buy it but others likely
    will not. There has been so many AD's over the years how will you ever know
    what was done? Damage history? Engine hours? How will you know what the
    dispute was - maybe it was over something you should know but never will?
    Maybe they just don't want you to look at the logs and just saying there is
    a dispute - not a good deal in any way shape or form.unless the plane is
    being parted out or it is priced sooooooo cheap.....

    The present owner should work out the problems with the AME and get the
    books prior to a sale so it's history can be reviewed and passed on down the
    line.

    Ed Fitchett
    C-GBTC
    Toronto Canada


    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "David" <DavidLWhitley@earthlink.net>
    To: <musketeermail@yahoogroups.com>
    Sent: Friday, December 15, 2006 11:35 AM
    Subject: [inbox] [musketeermail] No Logbook!


    I'm looking at a Sierra.... the plane has no logbooks. In a dispute
    over a repair or annual its mechanic refused to return the logs and
    supposedly is holding them. The owner recently died and the plane is
    being sold by a nephew. My local repair establishment is looking over
    the plane to verify its AD's (and perform the missing ones.)
    My question:

    What % do I discount the offering price due to the absence of logbooks
    and records?

  6. #6
    Sound advice from Ed. There is so much hiding in the shadows here. How do you know that the technician hasn't filed a mechanic's lien against the plane? That kind of lien follows the airplane, not the previous owner, dead or alive.

    The only way you should consider this plane is if you can sit down with the technician and sort things out, and have him release the logs, and sign a release of any claims against the plane. For example, work something out so that he is guaranteed to get whatever he is due, from the proceeds of the sale. And only by you paying that portion of the sale price directly to the claimant (not relying on the seller to do it).

    If this problem cannot be worked out, there's no way I'd consider this plane. Even if it was given to you, your headaches would be just beginning. In addition to the possibility of legal issues and contested title, you'll be facing things like an engine removal and accessory case disassembly, just to see what oil pump parts are in it.

  7. #7

    No Logbook!

    I wonder if someone can legally withold log books??? I
    would talk with AOPA and see what advice they would
    give too.

    Regards

    HArryR
    --- n76lima@mindspring.com wrote:

    > >I'm looking at a Sierra.... the plane has no
    > logbooks. In a dispute
    > >over a repair or annual its mechanic refused to
    > return the logs and
    > >supposedly is holding them. The owner recently died
    > and the plane is
    > >being sold by a nephew. My local repair
    > establishment is looking over
    > >the plane to verify its AD's (and perform the
    > missing ones.)
    > >My question:
    > >
    > >What % do I discount the offering price due to the
    > absence of logbooks
    > >and records?
    >
    > I don't think there is a set percentage. But it
    > should be in the 10-30% range, and you have a LOT of
    > paperwork ahead of you.
    >
    > I'd suggest you talk with the shop that supposedly
    > has them and ask what they'd SELL the books for, and
    > if you can get a look at them in advance of buying
    > the plane.
    >
    > It'd be worth every nickel of $5000 to have the
    > logs.
    >
    > So look to arrange that in advance, and then
    > negotiate the price with the nephew based on no
    > logs, and buy the plane and the logs and have YOUR
    > mechanic inspect the plane to compare its condition
    > with the logs (which might be years out of date,
    > depending on how long the dispute has been going on.
    >
    > --Bob Steward A&P IA
    > Birmingham, AL

  8. #8
    Trust me on this one...Follow these two's advice without hesitation. I know of a person who bought a plane like the one you are describing, and trust me it's been a headache for them since. Although it was a Cessna, and not a Beech, he's had issues from day one. So unless you can get the log's...I'd not risk it. Even though you get could it for alot less than with the log's, you could pay twice the value in the plane over the years fixing or confirming that it is "legal". Hope this helps....

    M. Spencer

  9. #9
    Partial missing logs is one thing, total missing logs is another, the plane is worth salvage until proven otherwise.

    AD wise our Beeches are pretty easy _but_ - there's a bunch of ADs that we all _know_ were complied with years ago but without the logbooks are undone until proven otherwise by repeating the process or manually verifying parts. At the very least you are looking at pulling the engine and pulling off the accessory case to verify or execute the oil pump AD - all our AC had this done a decade or two ago - but without the logs you're out of luck. Being a Sierra you're particularly vulnerable to the Hartzell hub AD and the Lycoming Crank AD, you might be exposed to various cylinder head and connecting rod ADs that may not be able to be verfied without engine tear down, some may not be verifiable at all and require replacement. For instance I'm not sure the connecting rods have S/Ns stamped on them so without the yellow tags if they are in fact ECI connecting rods you may have to replace them and one could argue you have to pull the cylinders to even verify this.

    I'm just trying to give you a few of the many examples of what can make this a problem cost more than the AC is worth.

    You also don't know the real story until you talk to the tech - is it a payment dispute or did the A&P refuse to sign off on airworthy because of some unpeformed repair or unaddressed issue? You just don't know until you at least get to hear the other side of the story in the dispute. The reality in these cases is the truth is usually somewhere in between the two sides of the story and you've only heard one and a nebulous one at that.

    In practice the logbooks _are_ the property of the aircraft owner - in the absence of a lein or court order one should be able to compel the return of the logbooks, but that should either be solved by the previous owner or worked into the sale with the tech involved in the dispute.

  10. #10
    Without the current logbooks, there is no way to ascertain that the plane has had a recent annual inspection, and thus the Airworthiness Certificate is not valid. It would be illegal to fly the plane, and you would most likely never be able to get insurance. If you had an accident, I wouldn't even want to think what you might face.

    There are a lot of good used airplanes on the market. Don't get suckered.

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