Welcome To Plathville star Isaac Plath was able to realize one of his biggest dreams this season — buying an airplane!
Well, given that Isaac was underage, he wasn’t technically the buyer. That honor belongs to his mother, Kim Plath, and his former co-worker (and potential future new stepdad), Ken Palmer.
“I’m here at the Cairo airport right now because I just bought an airplane,” Isaac announces in Welcome To Plathville Season 5, Episode 4. “It’s a dream come true. I’ve always wanted to have my own plane since I can — as far back as I can remember.”
Isaac then reveals that his ownership has an asterisk. “Me and Ken both bought the plane, and now we’re in halves with it together,” he says. “I know Ken from the Tallahassee airport. About a year ago I started working with him, doing aircraft maintenance, and we just hit it off really well, and have been friends ever since.”
Kim stepps in and reveals there is another asterisk regarding Isaac’s ownership of the plane — and it’s a pretty big asterisk. “Isaac is ultimately paying for it, but my name is on the loan,” Kim says. “So, I am responsible, ultimately, for the loan. So, if Isaac doesn’t pay, then I own half of an airplane.”
“Mom helped me in a lot of different ways getting this plane because she knows it’s been a big passion of mine,” Isaac admits. “She went out of her way multiple times to help me accomplish my dreams, and so, it means more to me than she knows.”
How much did Isaac Plath’s airplane cost?
According to the FAA, Ken Palmer registered a 1978 Piper Cherokee Warrior II in February of 2022. The FAA registration number matches Isaac’s plane shown on Welcome To Plathville. (Producers partially blurred out the numbers on screen, but it’s fairly easy to piece it together with multiple angles.)
Welcome To Plathville producers list Isaac’s age as 17 in the scene with his plane, but he didn’t turn 17 until October of 2022. He would have been 16 years old at the time the plane was registered to Ken Palmer.
I was unable to locate a listing for the exact plane purchased by Ken, Kim and Isaac, but there are numerous current listings for 1978 Piper Cherokee Warrior II airplanes for sale.
The prices range from roughly $60,000 on the low end, up to $134,000 on the high end. My guess is that Isaac wasn’t shopping for a plane with lots of bells and whistles, so I would estimate his airplane was around $70,000.
$70k for an airplane (or anything else for that matter) is A LOT for a 16-year-old! “I do have a few apprehensions because of Isaac’s age,” Ken admits. “But again, I trust Isaac’s judgement. He’s mature for his age. I feel like he’ll take care of the airplane.”
Of course, $70k is a small price to pay for a 16- or 17-year-old guy hoping to impress some girls. “I think that having a plane is kinda attractive to the ladies,” Isaac says. “A lot of different ladies have different opinions, but, you know, in general, I think it kinda is pretty sexy.”
Isaac does remain appreciative and humble. “I never thought I’d have this at 17.”
Kim Plath agrees. “That’s hot,” she tells Isaac, before offering a fist bump.
#WelcomeToPlathville The scene in which Kim Plath suggests she and her 16-yr-old son Isaac go on a double date to the Keys in his plane got even more awkward since she's now dating Isaac's flight instructor Ken (who is also in the scene). pic.twitter.com/HW6n9DSdsb
— Starcasm (@starcasm) October 18, 2023
Does Isaac Plath have his pilot’s license?
If you’re wondering whether or not Isaac Plath and Kim Plath ever went on that romantic double date to the Florida Keys together, the answer appears to be “no.” Well, unless Ken was flying.
According to the FAA, Isaac Plath only has a student certificate, which was issued in April of 2021. That means Isaac is not allowed to carry passengers.
Also interesting to note is, according to flightaware.com, Isaac’s plane hasn’t had any flights in the past 14 days.
How much is maintenance on a plane like Isaac’s? I spoke with a former owner of a Piper aircraft who lived in Georgia who says the cost for parking the plane at a small Georgia airport would be minimal if it’s outside. If stored in a hangar, as shown on Welcome To Plathville, his experience in Georgia (before the recent inflation explosion) was a range between $125 a month and $600 a month.
Another major cost with airplane ownership is maintenance. The person I spoke with said his most expensive annual inspection was $8,000 and his least expensive was $1,200. Once again, this was from before the recent inflation hikes.
It’s unclear how many flight hours the engine in Isaac’s plane has. Lycoming engines, like the one in Isaac’s plane, can go 2,000 hours before requiring an overhaul. Depending on the extent of the overhaul, the cost can range between $20,000 and $30,000.
— Starcasm (@starcasm) September 25, 2023