Pilots and airplane enthusiasts know the importance of having a safe and secure place to store and maintain their aircraft. What better solution than having a personal hangar? However, building an airplane hangar is not a small feat. It involves careful planning, design, and construction. Let this article be your complete guide to constructing an airplane hangar to help you protect your aircraft and build a sturdy, dependable structure.
Understanding the Logistics of Building an Airplane Hangar
Before you delve into the process of constructing an airplane hangar, it’s paramount to understand the logistics involved. You’ll first need to assess the space requirements. The hangar’s dimensions should accommodate your aircraft, factoring in the wingspan, length, and tail height. Your hangar should hold your aircraft comfortably, with enough space for you to move around it for inspections and maintenance tasks.
Next, consider the workspace. You’ll likely need a dedicated area for tools, spare parts, and possibly a small space for minor repairs or maintenance work. You should organize and make this area easily accessible.
You’ll also want to think about storage. You might need space for spare parts, fuel, cleaning supplies, and personal items. Keep this space clean and organized to prevent any hazards. Additionally, you may want to include amenities like a small office, restroom, or lounge area if you plan to spend a lot of time in your hangar. Remember, the goal is to create a layout that makes your hangar an efficient, comfortable, and safe place to store your aircraft and carry out your aviation activities.
While measurement is important, it’s crucial that you research your local building codes and regulations. These can influence the location, design, and materials you can use for your hangar. Finally, consider utility requirements such as electrical, plumbing, and HVAC. A well-planned hangar isn’t just a storage space but a functional workspace that caters to all your aviation needs.
Finding the Right Location for Your Hangar and Getting the Permits
Choosing the right location for your airplane hangar is a crucial step that can affect the hangar’s functionality, accessibility, and legality. Begin by evaluating available spaces within your local airport—they often have designated areas for private hangars. You should also consider access to taxiways, proximity to fueling stations, and ease of access to the runway. Regarding suitability, the land should be flat and clear of any obstructions. Remember, the land size should fit the hangar and the runway, and have space for parking and vehicle access.
Once you’ve settled on a location, your next step is to obtain the necessary building permits. Obtaining these documents can be a complex process, as it involves satisfying requirements from different regulatory bodies. You must review and follow guidelines from the local government, the airport authority, and potentially the Federal Aviation Administration. You must submit your detailed hangar, showing how it adheres to all relevant building codes and regulations. We also highly recommend you consult a construction expert and a lawyer to ensure your plans meet all the necessary criteria before submission.
Choosing the Right Materials for Your Structure
The materials you choose for your hangar construction are essential for the structure’s longevity, safety, and functionality. Typically, airplane hangars consist of steel or other metal alloys due to their strength and durability. Steel is resistant to elements like wind and fire, making it a safe and reliable choice. Additionally, it requires minimal maintenance, saving you time and money in the long run.
However, a fabric airplane hangar is one option worth considering. These structures have a strong, engineered membrane stretched over a lightweight steel frame, offering flexibility and durability. Fabric hangars are known for their incredible strength-to-weight ratio, and resistance to weather elements, corrosion, and UV radiation. Additionally, they’re easier and faster to install than their traditional counterparts, which can significantly reduce construction time and costs.
Despite their lightweight nature, fabric hangars can withstand high wind and snow loads, making them a reliable choice for various climates. They also allow for natural light penetration, reducing the need for artificial lighting during the day.
Consider using a high-quality industrial sealant to protect the concrete flooring from oil stains, rubber marks, and other potential damages. Also, the hangar doors must be sturdy enough to withstand varying weather conditions and large enough for easy aircraft access. Several types of hangar doors exist—sliding, bi-fold, and overhead are just a few. Your choice will depend on your hangar’s design, aircraft size, and budget.
Pre-construction Planning and Preparation
In the pre-construction phase, meticulous planning and preparation are paramount—begin by drafting a detailed construction plan. This plan should encompass a timeline for each phase of the construction, a layout of the hangar, and a clear delineation of the roles and responsibilities of the construction team. Preparing a comprehensive budget that accounts for all possible expenses, including materials, labor, equipment rentals, and contingencies, is also crucial.
Be sure to factor in any potential delays due to weather or unforeseen issues that may crop up during construction. Additionally, conducting a thorough site inspection to assess soil composition and drainage patterns is paramount, as these factors can influence the foundation of your hangar. While planning is important, don’t forget to consistently communicate with your construction team—the clearer you communicate, the faster and easier the work gets done.
Ensuring Safety Compliance With Local Regulations
Safety, undoubtedly, is the cornerstone of any aviation-related construction, and your hangar should comply with all the local safety regulations and building codes. This compliance must include fire safety measures like installing fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, and potentially a sprinkler system.
You may also want to consider installing the appropriate ventilation systems to prevent harmful fumes from fuel or other chemicals from building up. The floor should be slip-resistant to prevent accidents, and you should equip the hangar with appropriate lighting for visibility. Additionally, ensure all electrical installations comply with the electrical code and that all signs and markings inside and outside the hangar are clear and visible.
It’s also wise to have an evacuation plan in case of emergencies. Lastly, ensure you carry out regular safety inspections and maintenance to keep the hangar in a safe and operational condition. Remember, abiding by safety regulations keeps you and your aircraft safe and helps avoid potential legal complications.
With this complete guide to constructing an airplane hangar, you’re on your way to customizing a shelter that is perfect for your aircraft. Let Big Top Manufacturing help if going through all this work sounds like too much to put on your plate.
Not only can we fully customize your aviation hangar to meet your specific needs, but we’ll take care of all the measurements, permits, building codes, and all the other nitty-gritty details for you! You get all the benefits of having a customized airplane hangar without having to do any of the work when you work with us.