We had the privilege of spending much time with the erstwhile manufacturers of the Lake Amphibious Aircraft and also got to fly one of their Seaplanes extensively. We found that the inventory of Lake Amphibs that we have, are perhaps the 3 best ones in the World. After some extensive interactions with other Lake Aircraft sales and service centres, brokers, owners of the Lake 250 Renegade we began to realize that most of those advertised online have had "issues" in their history, from docking incidents to hard landings, from skin wrinkling due to improper water operations to major airframe damage during operations. None of these are highlighted on their ads to a large extent but on probing, many proverbial worms emerge from the cans! However what attracts many people to these ads are the low prices that can go even lower if even the slightest interest is shown in them. The desperation of a seller shouldn't be the factor guiding a buyer to dive into it, as we explain further below.
(lake 250 water landing and takeoff)
(Water landing on a narrow canal!)
Detailed research convinced us that the values, however low they are being advertised on the net, are inaccurate and one can spend many thousands (and perhaps hundreds of thousands!) of Dollars post purchases when problems start surfacing in the Aircraft. A thorough pre buy is a must when buying any Aircraft. That we all know. However when it comes to Seaplanes/Amphibious Aircraft, more caution and detailed inspection needs to be done, like running a fine toothed comb over everything. Remembering that these Airplanes operate on land AND water, especially due to the latter, things can get very critical with buying the wrong plane. Caution also needs to be exercised about some service centres using re-manufactured parts/fake parts. This is a serious issue but may not be widespread. One cannot stress enough, the point of doing a thorough pre-buy inspection and due diligence. Employ someone who knows the machine thoroughly. Employ a specialist. After all we are not buying apples and oranges here.
(high speed water ops and turns)
While one cannot police online ads for their authenticity and accurate advertising, one must look beyond their claims of "always hangared" and "low time" and words like "excellent cosmetics" after all we aren't buying a good looking aircraft, those hundreds of thousands of Dollars shouldn't go into buying a great paint job. What makes our inventoried Airplanes such good value is the very fact that the guys who manufactured them, maintained them, have vetted them. Team Lake has gone into each one of them with the proverbial fine toothed comb before certifying them for sale.
(Coming out of the water and onto a ramp and grass parking)
(Entering water from a ramp)
Our take on this matter is based on the people who have backed this great Aircraft called the Lake 250 Renegade. They have come off a historically sound design, evolving and improving over time, having a loyal customer base who would seize the opportunity for a new machine as soon as production re-starts in whatever avatar eventually. Among all the true Seaplanes of this category and class, the Lake 250 remains the best made product. However, the cautionary thing to be aware of is that due to the popularity of the Lake 250 in the past, there are a few on the used market, mostly with dodgy history not overtly advertised as such.
(cockpit view of Lake 250 approach & landing on runway, notice how short it lands & exits first taxiway)
While we do not advertise our exclusive team lake inventory online as of now, we maintain our sales contacts one-on-one. We have posted specifications and photos of our exclusive line of Lake 250 Aircraft on this BLOG previously. Click on the word BLOG to visit that page directly. We stand by the product and provide long term support for it. We do what no one else does in this part of the World covering most of Asia, and that is to provide quality sales and service for Amphibious Aircraft, particularly the Lake line of Amphibious Aircraft. That we are branching out to larger Amphibians is a fact, and part of our long term plans. However, our core area for now and a larger involvement in future will be for the Lake line.
This blog serves as a guideline sharing some of our thoughts regarding the pre-owned market as we have seen it first hand and from up-close. Aircraft/Engine/Part/Component purchase. Look to us for your next Aircraft for reliable acquisitions of the Lake and wide variety of Jets and turboprops that we now manage at our facility in Singapore.