Who we are
We are located at the Gastonia Municipal Airport (KAKH) in Gastonia, NC, just minutes outisde of Charlotte. The Stanley Aero Club has many practical, financial, social, and other benefits to offer to all skill levels of pilots. See the Contact Us page for details on contacting the club and the WX and Info page for a map and other details.
The Stanley Aero Club is well established and proven member-owned flying club, and is dedicated to providing safe and low-cost flying. The club was founded in 1970 by a group of local pilots who wanted to make flying enjoyable and accessible to occasional pilots.
The roster currently contains contains around 25 members. Openings are available and occur as people leave the area. Turnover averages about 5% annually. The club’s leadership is elected annually from member volunteers.
Each new member must purchase a membership in the club. If the club is currently offering new memberships, the cost is determined by the officers of the club based on the current value of the club. If an existing member of the club is willing to sell their membership, that price is determined by the member and negotiated outside of the club.
There is also a monthly fee to cover fixed costs, currently $90.00, and the hourly rates for each airplane, which are kept to the minimum amount needed to properly and safely operate the aircraft. Currently all aircraft operate at rates significantly below comparable market rates.
Operations approach and rules
Safety: Our rules in aircraft usage and currency are focused on maximizing safety with minimal impact on convenience
Competence: We require annual check rides to assure each member is able to handle the aircraft with the care of an owner
Flexibility: We offer on-line scheduling up to a year in advance, taking the plane for up to 14 days (with approval and no minimums), and 24 hour access to the airplanes and keys
Scheduling: Web based on-line scheduling makes scheduling and related tasks easy and always available as long as you have access to a PC or to a phone.
Aircraft are maintained to strict standards with daily review of squawks by our mechanic and full aircraft inspections regularly. A dedicated Maintenance Officer manages the aircraft, resulting in high attention to detail and availability of our aircraft.
SAC is a well-established club for several reasons, but one of them is prudent financial management. Without losing our focus on keeping costs low, we reserve the appropriate amounts to cover scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, an ongoing program of repainting and new interiors, and maintaining a reserve fund for avionics upgrades. This means the club has never had a supplemental assessment to cover expenses. Fixed expenses are covered from the monthly dues, so if we don’t fly that month for some reason – flight restrictions or weather would be possibilities – we can pay for all fixed expenses, including insurance and hangers. Variable expenses are covered from the hourly charges. This covers scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, repainting and new interiors, avionics upgrades, and fuel/oil costs.
All members are covered under the SAC insurance policy when operating our aircraft. With SAC you are not a renter, you are an owner, and you are insured appropriately!