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Pitts S-1S (S-1E) For Sale

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petersdj

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I'm reluctantly selling one of the nicest Pitts I've seen. Just put on Barnstormers tonight. $37,500.

Website with more info and pics is here: http://www.n99ux.dreamhosters.com/N88BS.htm

  • 1077 TTAE ~600 TSTOH
  • O-360 with PS-5 Carb.
  • Beautifully built by Dennis Sawyer - my IA says its the nicest Pitts that has come through his shop.
  • Long history of oil analysis and compressions in the upper 70's.
  • Full electrical with Garmin 320A and Becker radio.
  • Two props - a 0 SMOH Performance Propellers and a metal Sensenich.
  • Has the S-1T symmetrical ailerons, spades, and third flying wire.
  • Spring gear with Aviation Products tailwheel make this one of the nicest landing Pitts around.
  • Vac pad inverted oil pickup, crossover exhaust, header tank, and plumbed for smoke with pump.
  • No trades.
  • located Longmont, CO USA

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Matt-

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Good luck with the sale! What spinner is that? It looks great with the Performance Prop.
 

PittsDriver68

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I will have to tell Dennis that "his" ship is up or sale.

Best of luck,

Wes
 

dimcuesta

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I tried monoplaneforum.com, but strangely, it didn't work!

Very nice Pitts! I think it will sell quickly. All the best with your Extra!

-Dimitri
 
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derek

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Well, what a surprise!

I bought this Pitts from Denis back in Nashua NH, and brought it to Colorado. Was a hand-swung prop start when I got it, but I had the full electrical system installed -- some people told me it was a sacrilege to add the weight, but I never regretted it. Also the spin-off oil filter, after I got sick of trying to get to the oil screen.

This Pitts was an absolute dream to fly -- how I miss it!

After I moved to Colorado, I kept it at FNL for a while and eventually sold it to a friend in Longmont and then lost track.

Today I was nostalgia-surfing and decided to look up my old Pitts. What a surprise to see it still in Longmont, and up for sale!

I envy whoever buys this Pitts. Wish I could afford to get back into it myself.

Derek.
 

derek

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Looking at the photos, it looks like it's really been cared for. Still the same color scheme as when I had it -- and very clean looking.

Oh, the memories.
 

petersdj

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Price reduced to $35,000.

Full electrical with transponder and panel mounted radio, no messing around with handpropping!

And two props so you can pick which one works best for you!

Conditional inspection completed in April.

Dan
 

dimcuesta

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Very surprised this one hasn't sold yet! Looks like a very good deal.
 

petersdj

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Bumping this ad. I had breakfast with the former owner and he said he's flown 4 other S-1S's since selling me this one, and this is by far the best flying Pitts. He said it handles better than the others and is the only one to fly straight as an arrow!

I dropped the price to $35k.
 
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Eric_Anderson

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I agree with Dimitri from a couple of months ago. It's very surprising that this hasn't sold yet.
 

digits

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I agree with Dimitri from a couple of months ago. It's very surprising that this hasn't sold yet.
I have been looking for a pitts for a while now. and I saw this ad popup every month. The thing that spooks me, and probably other people, is that the fabric is 35 years old unless I read the ad wrong.
 

Kinnerhatz

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There is an S-1S here that is flying with 42 year old fabric. It looks great (on the outside) with many coats of polished dope on top of Ceconite. Who knows what is going on on the inside though.
 

RickRice

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If the airplane has been hangared all the time and well maintained, the age of the fabric shouldn't be a concern if it still looks nice. The fabric on my J-3 dates from 1969 and it's in great shape. We pulled the fabric off of an aileron in order to check the integrity of the ribstitches and it's all still as good as the day it was covered, and so is the fabric.

Polyester fabric, if protected from UV rays, truly is lifetime fabric. From my perspective, if the airplane has been hangared and well maintained, there's no more reason to worry about the fabric than there would be to worry about the age of the skin on an aluminum covered plane. -- Do a thorough inspection and understand how the airplane's been flown. If it's been pushed to the outer limits of its design, then it might warrant undressing after all these years, NOT because the fabric's a concern, but because the structure itself needs to be looked at. But if it's been flown like most, hangared all the time it's not flying, and well maintained, the age of the fabric shouldn't scare anyone away if everything else passes muster during the inspection.
 

PittsDriver68

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The builder, Dennis Sawyer is my neighbor. If I understand correctly, the ship was flown very hard early in its life. Dennis battled John Morrisey for the IAC Advanced Championship at Fond du Lac in that airplane, winning in 1984 I think. Dennis' related that in a later year his partner managed to break the top wing. If I understand correctly, there is a spar splice in there. I knew the second owner and he did not fly the ship nearly as hard.

As for the age of the fabric, I think that despite the belief that the fabric is likely in good shape, no buyer will pay top dollar for a ship wearing fabric that old. If I were interested in the ship, I would offer a price that is a hefty discount from what similar ships with average (10 year?) age cover are selling for, assuming that I will have to spend $25K or more on new fabric in the near future. That's the risk-reward calculation. Not what a seller wants to hear, but that's likely what the market says.

That said, once the ship is recovered, it is likely a great ride.

Best of luck,

Wes
 

pigpenracing

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The builder, Dennis Sawyer is my neighbor. If I understand correctly, the ship was flown very hard early in its life. Dennis battled John Morrisey for the IAC Advanced Championship at Fond du Lac in that airplane, winning in 1984 I think. Dennis' related that in a later year his partner managed to break the top wing. If I understand correctly, there is a spar splice in there. I knew the second owner and he did not fly the ship nearly as hard.

As for the age of the fabric, I think that despite the belief that the fabric is likely in good shape, no buyer will pay top dollar for a ship wearing fabric that old. If I were interested in the ship, I would offer a price that is a hefty discount from what similar ships with average (10 year?) age cover are selling for, assuming that I will have to spend $25K or more on new fabric in the near future. That's the risk-reward calculation. Not what a seller wants to hear, but that's likely what the market says.

That said, once the ship is recovered, it is likely a great ride.

Best of luck,

Wes
Well this post just ran off anyone interested. LOL!
 

Lotahp1

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As a A&P I find it insane this theory that the "structure" needs this constant inspection that only a recover can show. I have yet to drill off all the skins from a Yak or Piper or any aluminum skinned plane for the sole purpose that "well that cover/skin is 35yrs old and I need to see what the "structure" looks like". Now that structure is metal more than likely...not wood like the plane here in question but that is not necessarily a positive! I've seen more corrosion than bad wood. If the build was done correctly...the wood was varnished and Protected when it was last covered, age is actually better on wood than metal. The problem is most people think of wood as a inferior building structure or some sort of antique mystery substance that needs constant recovering because when grade a cotton was the norm and planes sat outside, covering and wood deteriorated after only a few years and they use to recover often. To add to this, the top big money guys who push their planes to the edge on every flight, pay the big bucks to have their planes recovered and inspected during the off show season. (Think Sean tucker etc) That is because they are pushing the limits every flight and because it's a paid for extra bit of insurance by their sponsors so no failures happen, no matter how rare, when they are flown in huge air shows in front of millions a year. I applaud them for taking that extra effort to ensure the safety but it doesn't mean every plane needs a recover every 5-10 years when they are flown 50-100hours a year at most normally and with proper inspection holes the structure can be inspected. I look at composite wing planes like Giles, extra, edge etc and wonder why no one seems to want to deskin those yearly??? Composite structures have very little in comparison to wood, data out there showing how age and stress effects them. There's some, a lot in fact...but not like wood. But because composite is the "new high tech" building material most take for granted the fact that there is no where near the history or data that wood has behind it. But yes, as Wes pointed out, a lot of people don't like old fabric. Regardless of the why, word of mouth opinions based on nothing more than grade a cotton use to require replacement and the idea that fabric over 10years old needs replaced prevails in the for sale market. Like it or not that's how it is. Like it or not this exact reason is why a lot of great planes sell for nothing but their engines and the rest is either scraped or pushed into a hangar and left for the next guy to sink more time into and money into. It's hard to spend $20-30k (rough guess what a person could get a Pitts covered for) when the same people who think it needs recovered constantly also only see $35k in value if it's all new! (But have no problem paying $80-125k for a RV that has same engine etc) All this said...I guess if someone has to buy this thing...I'll give $5k for it, as you can see that's more than fair! Right? ;-)
 

ssmdive

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As for the age of the fabric, I think that despite the belief that the fabric is likely in good shape, no buyer will pay top dollar for a ship wearing fabric that old. If I were interested in the ship, I would offer a price that is a hefty discount from what similar ships with average (10 year?) age cover are selling for, assuming that I will have to spend $25K or more on new fabric in the near future. That's the risk-reward calculation. Not what a seller wants to hear, but that's likely what the market says.
I will say that there were a few things I looked at as instant deductions in value from a buying perspective.

Fabric. If it is over 20 years old, I am less interested. Yes, I get the idea that modern fabrics if taken care of will last 'forever'. But after 20 years of acro I don't really trust that the ribs are not broken and the blocks not being ripped, or some level of corrosion in the metal does not exist. At this point, I need to plan a recover. I have been told if given the option of a worn out engine and new fabric or old fabric and a new engine... Buy the plane with good fabric since more people can do engine work, engine work often costs less, and fabric work takes longer to do.

I will say I would not sell my plane (800 hours since rebuild, rebuilt/recovered in 1998) if you walked up to me with 40K in your hand. So I can't say 37K is high.... But I don't have another acro plane in the stable.
 

EAABipe40FF

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Well this post just ran off anyone interested. LOL!


Wes simply speaks from experience having replaced the fabric and rebuilt the engine on his S2A.

A experienced Pitts mechanic with a good bore scope should be able to properly inspect the airplane. Personally, if I were in the market for a S1S this airplane would be a good choice if inspection showed no unresolved damage. I wouldn't fly it hard anyway and at my age the fabric would still last "forever". I'd love to have it. OTOH if I was younger and intending on flying advanced it would be a different story....pay now or later, at some point someone will need to pay. Sorry, the reality is that it's more and more a buyer's market for most "vintage types", even a Pitts Special.
We can cry all day about the people who pay $75k for an RV but the reality is that it's 2016 not 1986 when a Pitts Special was almost every pilot's dream machine. It's still mine and I suspect many on this forum? But alas many if not most of us are dinosaurs..... RV's and Pitts Specials are truly apples and oranges and it seems not many like apples anymore?

Again, it still looks like a terrific airplane for someone. I sincerely wish it was me.:)

I hope you do find the right guy....or gal.

Jack
 
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