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Importing a classic from the US

This is a low probability scenario, but am researching a 195 and wondering what import duties apply for bringing an N reg into the UK that happens to be close to 70 years old. The only ‘new’ kit would be an .833khz COM everything else would be used/original. Technically the US domiciled Trust would be the owner, but if I converted it to G reg, would any taxes/duties apply?

While not the price of a Tri-Pacer, they used to be cheaper than a Tri-Pacer, the 195 does seem to hold its value although not an aeroplane suited for hands off ownership/maintenance. An oil tray for the Jacobs engine marking its hangar territory seems to be de rigeur.

Oxford (EGTK), United Kingdom

There are no import duties but you will have to pay VAT on the value of the aircraft to import into the UK. Has nothing to do with the registration.

Last Edited by JasonC at 22 Mar 21:31
EGTK Oxford

Hi Robert,

Like all matters concerning the Customs Union, it’s very simple and straightforward, with clear and concise information published here=.

But if you want an English translation, to put the old bird in “free circulation” you will pay 0% duty and 20% VAT on whatever value you agree with HM Customs. If you don’t meet the conditions for “Non preferential duty under end-use“, the duty is 7.7%. Simples!

Last Edited by Jacko at 22 Mar 21:48
Glenswinton, SW Scotland, United Kingdom

Jacko/Jason thank you – plus the cost of a Northern VFR crossing, with emphasis on VFR. Hopefully duty is 0%, but not sure whether the conditions for non preferential applies!

Oxford (EGTK), United Kingdom

RobertL18C wrote:

researching a 195

The one AT has down at Dunkeswell not tickling your fancy? I remember seeing a 195 at a fly in before and being totally awestruck by the presence of it. Then the Stinson Gullwing G-BUCH showed up at Birr Airfield last summer and my mind was blown altogether. Those radial tailwheel airplanes are amazing.

Buying, Selling, Flying
EISG, Ireland

If you haven’t spent time in a C195 cockpit, try it on before getting too far. For taller people the wing spar is ever present behind head, very 1930s ergonomics.

A friend of mine says the C195 and Bellanca Viking are A and B sides of the same record: the C195 is an old plane built like a newer plane, the Viking is a newer plane built like an old plane. He makes a good point.

The one AT has down at Dunkeswell not tickling your fancy?

There are three of them for sale in Europe and they all are asking silly prices for the type. A nicely re built 195 on proper jigs with new paint and overhauled B2 engine can be found for $90-110k Stateside, and with all the intelligent airframe updates. The type at AT has the turbo charged engine, large cowling to deal with the cooling issues associated with turbocharging and doesn’t appear to have the necessary updates. I believe it is on the original crosswind gear, which works, but requires to be in top condition. At altitude a turbocharged C195 with a Jacobs 350HP will out run a turbo Bonanza, but this version is not IFR

There are two specialists for the type, Butterfly in Kansas and Barrons in Missouri, both with full jigs. Well maintained versions that have been through these shops with half life Jacobs B2 (275 HP) can be found for $70-80k.

The type usually has the gearbox strengthened and thicker skins underneath to avoid oil canning. Aileron hinge brackets are replaced and door posts strengthened. Oil drains are installed in the lower cyclinders to deal with hydraulicing. The generator is replaced with an alternator and the distributor (it has a battery distributor and one magneto) replaced with electronic ignition. Wheels are switched to Cleveland. All control linkages are replaced. The Jacobs B2 is the preferred engine. The A2 is prone to cracking.

Silvaire, great quote and agree that flying an example is important. Possibly the nicest version over here will be flying this spring and hope to catch a ride in it. They have a good track record for crashworthiness, the spar position being behind the cabin/occupants, being a design issue also for Ted Smith aircraft (Twin Commander and Aerostar).

A C-180 or C-185 is more practical! A straight tail C-182 is both more practical and a bargain.

Oxford (EGTK), United Kingdom

How wide is the rear couch in C195?
Can you really sit 3 adults there?

Have only been up close to G-BSPK at Biggin Hill, and the interior is pretty cavernous, so shouldn’t be a problem if the three are friendly. Around 1,200 lbs useful load compared to a 185 with 1,400 lbs plus. But a 185 is a four seater, the third row being reserved for people you want to annoy. Five adults and luggage probably requires limiting fuel to only a 2 hour flight with VFR reserves in the 195.

With electronic ignition assume 14 gph and 140 KTAS. The Jacobs like to be flown 65% plus, preferably 70-75% which might take you to 150 KTAS and 15-16 gph. They can use mogas.

Oxford (EGTK), United Kingdom

RobertL18C wrote:

There are two specialists for the type, Butterfly in Kansas and Barrons in Missouri, both with full jigs.

And the 195 Factory. in New York.

Last Edited by Silvaire at 23 Mar 14:15
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