Willing to fly, but having a low budget? Well, this page is
especially made for you.
Before I can tell about BULMs, I need to tell about ULM.
ULM stand in France for Ultra Léger Motorisé (motorized
ultralight). These kinds of airplanes were brought to life thanks
to some pioneers who wanted to make flying more accessible for
those with a lower budget. Names like William Lishman (most known user of the "Easy
Riser" (designed by Larry Mauro) and better known as the real
father figure in the film "Fly Away Home"), Don Mitchell (designer
of the U2 ultralight) and Henri Mignet (designer of the
Pou du Ciel or "Flying Flea" and founder of the amateur building
movement). Probably I did forget a lot of names. My apologies.
Did you notice it? SIMPLICITY! Yes, that is the key to low
budget flying. Through their simplicity the price could be kept
low. And the "man of the street" was able to fly. Many persons
learned to fly in Flying Fleas, Easy Risers, Quicksilvers,
Weedhoppers and a lot of the old ULMs.
But ... time goes by. New materials became introduced. More
reliable engines were created. The next generation of ULMs came.
Today the ULMs don't look like they used to. You have now
streamlined, fast ULMs. I thing that "fast" sounds great to many.
To me it echoes "expensive". Well, euh ... I don't like it. Let's
say, my wallet does not like it.
Where did those cheap airplane go to?
With other words ... a airplane that went back to simplicity and
... cheap prices.
How can you get one?
Well, that is a thing I want to do here. I hope to be able to
guide you to the BULMs. I will work on a directory of BULMs. If you
can help me to make this directory complete (or nearly complete), I
thank you in advance.
First ... there are two types of BULMs.
type 1: BULMBAF
BAF stands for "Buy And Fly".
This kind of BULM is for those without patience or ... with two
left hands (not being able to built a airplane himself). Just
contact a company, order, pay, wait for delivery and fly.
But, there are not a lot of these around. Actually ... I found
none. I wonder why? Is there here a hole in the market?
type 2: BULMPOK
POK stands for Plan OR Kit.
Here you need to work before you are able to fly. Logic tells
you that these can be cheaper than BULMBAFs. It saves in working
hours to pay. Those working hours will be done ... by you! Now,
don't take that building lightly. It is serious business. Your life
and that of a possible passenger depends on your work. So, if you
know you have two left hands -------> BULMBAF!!!!
The BULMPOKs come in several grades. It can be indicated by the
working hours. Less than 100 hours is a quick kit. 1000 hours can
...euh ... take a while. So, if you cannot find that info on the
site or brochure of the BULMPOK, ask for it! Do not drop into
There is one major drawback! You did spend money to buy the kit
or plan and materials. But you still don't have a airplane. That
takes time. And sometimes your situation changes in that time. Just
open a magazine and view the adds. Many sell their project (90 %
finished) due to changes in health, changes of job and loosing free
time, changes in financial status, getting married and so on. Or
just because they notice they are ... unhandy.
Now don't start thinking that I want to make BULMPOKs bad. No
no, I am building myself. Just started (January 2004).
Many say that building is as much fun as flying. Some even sell
the finished and tested airplane to start a new project. Time will
tell which kind you are.
Note: I cannot make comparisons between the kits on prices. You
need to find out yourself what is in the kits ... or better what is
not. All I can do is to guide you towards the sites where you can
contact the manufacturer.