I was just wondering how many of you out there have experienced the same thing I have.

Every time I tell my family or friends that I'm building an airplane they all get this horrified look on their face and tell me they know all kinds of people that have died in homebuilt aircraft and they're sure I will be the next one if I go ahead with this insanity. When pressed they can never give me any names or specifics though.

So I was just wondering what everyone else's response is when they get this from family and friends.

I have rigged up several 2 x 4's and some bed sheets, took a picture of it, this is what I show them when they ask what my airplane looks like. At that point they just turn several shades of white and don't have much more to say about it. Usually it's all I can do to not burst out laughing..

So what is a good answer or comeback to people like this.

Take care and appreciate the joy of building.... there's nothing better in life.

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When I was building and people expressed things like that, I'd tell them that "I really wanted to build a Spaceship, but my wife convinced me to start with something simpler and more achievable".  I'd point towards my airplane project while saying, "simpler and more achievable".  It works best if you've made significant progress on your build.

Don't let anyone discourage you.  When that day comes and you take your creation into the air with your own hand, your success is proven.  It's indescribable...

- Pat

Great answer!

You wrote: I have rigged up several 2 x 4's and some bed sheets, took a picture of it, this is what I show them when they ask what my airplane looks like. At that point they just turn several shades of white..."

You should find a pic of that guy in Africa a few years ago who built his own airplane, from scratch, with no plans, etc.  He was very serious about it and was convinced he had a viable result.  That would be better than the bedsheets for getting a reaction - some semblance of reality!

Looks like a zenith copy.

Plans Built? :-)

Van, it may be too late for you, but you have to start with "the attitude" decades ago.

I'm the black sheep of my wife's family (I'm an only child so no comparison for my side).  I'm a retired senior engineering manager. Wife's family is heavy into the Humanities, so they're frequently taken aback by my pragmatic statements of the obvious.  Bluntness, I guess.

Anyway, at least they ALL say, "if there was ever a homebuilt plane I'd fly in, Carl, it would be YOURS!"  We *know* *you* built it correctly.  Of course, being truthful, I reply, aw shucks; thanks, but I know where all the mistakes are!

I'm afraid my answer wouldn't be appropriate for most people. I tell them that nearly every time they climb into a commercial airliner they are climbing into a plane that I had some involvement in designing and/or building. Sometimes that makes them less leery of my project, but sometimes it makes them wonder if they want to fly commercially again - especially if one went down lately. :-D

Take care and appreciate the joy of building.... there's nothing better in life.

"... joy of building... there's nothing better..."?  "Maybe" that's true, but flying runs a close second!  ;>)



Just tell them you want to be part of the elite group of individuals who have built and flown their own aircraft.  There really is no way to describe the feeling when you take off for the first time. All the skepticism, planning and long hours of building are instantly paid off. I heard those same comments for 10 years while I was building my 701, I just said, "one day I will fly it", and I did, all the way to Oshkosh.

Keep Building, you'll fly it one day. 

I was told that I was building my own coffin made from aluminum. I would ask them what did you just drive up in. Its made from aluminum. I tell them I am safer in the air than on the highway. No greater feeling than that first flight on the airplane you built with your own hands. Thanks to the HEINTZ FAMILY!!

The great feeling flying something you built has continued for me for 3 1/2 years. I hope it never goes away.


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