With nearly 1,200 new experimental/amateur-built aircraft registered in 2019, the fleet has seen its largest growth in a decade, according to aviation writer Ron Wanttaja, who has tracked homebuilt registrations since 2010.
The 2019 figure is up from 888 the prior year, while last year 916 aircraft were removed or “de-registered,” for a net gain of 270 registrations, he recently posted on the EAAForums.org webpage.
Leaders by manufacturer include Van’s Aircraft (249 newly registered in 2019), Zenith Aircraft (65), CarbonCub (62), RANS (45), Kitfox (40), Sonex (31), Glasair Aviation Sportsman/older GlaStar (26), and Lancair (23).
The most numerous single design is the Van’s RV-6/A, with 1,742 on the books, followed by the RV-7 (1,285), and RV-8 (1,252).
Overall, though, the number of registered homebuilts is lower today than in 2010, when there were almost 33,000 on the list, largely because the FAA began a mandatory registration renewal process in 2010. Before this, many non-flying aircraft were still shown as registered. In 2013, the first year this policy change would affect the data, some 5,000 homebuilts were removed from the registration database, according to Wanttaja.