Planes

4,000 hours of flying so far.  Started in high school. Am Airline Transport rated, flight and ground instructor. What fun.

The amazing C310G.  700 hours  in this super plane. 

1962 Cessna 310G

My favorite - 200mph at 20gph. The G model was the first of the upswept tip tanks 310's. I owned it for almost a decade and flew it about 700 hours. Fun to fly and certainly the best cross country airplane I've owned. I saw it up on jacks during an annual. With the landing gear up it looked like a flat-bottomed fish. Amazing sheet metal work, almost seamless construction. Whoever desigedn this airplane deserves a bronze bust ourside the Cessna factory. At 12,000' you get 200mph at 20gph. The through-the-nacelle exhausts make Harley riders cringe from the wonderful noise. Noise-cancelling headsets were made for this plane. It's easy to fly: no hydraulics, cowl flaps or tricky limitations. When you push the thottles up to max power, you get pushed back into your seat. Seven hunded and twenty horsepower in streamlined nacelles. very fast and doesn't use a lot of gas. When I was working, I flew it almost every week. Returing from NYC, I picked up an inch and a half wing ice going into Brimingham and it landed without a problem. The line guy removed huge chunks of ice saying "These 310's alway's get in." I hit severe turbulence near El Paso in 2009 which shot Gummi Bears and Fiddle Faddle all over the cabin. the pax kept drinking martinis and watched their iPads hit the ceiling. the 310 never cared. Very sturdy airplane. I stopped working in 2009 and the jplane had to go. Too bad. A fillup at Signarre aviation in Ausin now costs $700 so it became impractical. On top of that, parts are hard to find. I miss it a lot.

Piper Turbo Arrow PA-28-201RT

Two other pilots wanted to buy a plane and I agreed to join their partnerhsip. We found a very clean Turbo Arrow at Brown Aviation in San Antonio and bought it without much thought. When you're paying $20K for a almost new plane, there's not to think about. A local bank even financed it. I flew the Arrow about 300 hours mostly on trips to the East Coast. It wasn't very fast which surprised me. If I got 150 knots I was happy. I looked a lot faster. It's virtues were air conditioning and turbo charging which allowed me to fly above 20,000 feet and enjoy some amazing tail winds. I had a portable oxygen bottle and the Arrow would easily climb to 24,000 feet and cruise easily with the wonderful Century III autopilot doing all the work. the plane was equipped with an amazing method of automatically putting the

Partenavia P-68

My friend Vic Poor bought a Parenavia P68 to replace his Cessna 421 that moved on to a charter operation. The Partenavia is a fixed gear airplane with flawless workmanship. I took my Airline Transport Pilot rating in this plane in 1982. Vic put a panel of King silver electronics including a HF set wihich we used as a ham radio set. Vic called it a twin-engine Mooney but it was much more that that more like a twin Cessna 208. I flew lots or trips with six people and lots of baggage. If you ran the engines up to 2400 RPM, the plane would easily cruise at 160 knots. The view out the front window was panaramic.  

Cessna 172A

I saw an ad for a this Cessna on an Internet site. The engine was high-time but the Canadian owner only wanted $12K - he said the airframe was solid. He was right, life in Canada produces no corrosion. Richard Ramirez, an A & P, discovered the engine had over 3,000 hours on it and he rebuilt it. I flew it several hundred hours on the old engine and shot a lot of oil on the belly. My son flies former CF-MJN from Fort Huachuca in Arizona where it lives in a city hangar. Before he got it, I put a King GPS and nav/com in it. He flies it better than I ever did. This plane always works and is inexpensive to keep running. Someday it will get painted. If you lived in a remote place with limited facilities, this is the plane to have. It can run on car gas if the gas has no Ethanol.
mooney 20c

Mooney M20C

My nightmare. I bought this from a dealer and regretted it. Chalie Dugosh in Kerrville found spar corrosion and fixed it. Discouraging. Three hundred hours ahter, the engine block cracked. I sold it to a local flight school for what I paid for it. My boss at the time, Vic Poor bought a new Mooney 201 and he let me fly it. I learned a lot about airplane inspection and maintenace from this guy. It was a nice plane, though. Fast and easy on the gas.

Piper Vagabond PA-17

My first airplane. I saw this guy at Andrau Airport in Houston in 1973 with a for sales sign. $3200 later it was mine. You have to have to hand prop it to start the engine but I didn't care. I had a plane. My friend John Stokes is a gun nut and we used to fly from Houston to the Guldf coast and land on the beach where he would test fire his latest machine gun. My son accompanied me on these flights sitting in my lap. It was fast. with a 65 HP engine it would cruise at 90mph. the muffler rotte dout and a local hot rod shop rebuilt the whole set of tubing for $100. I sold it when I traded up to a Mooney M20C. Wonderful taildragger.
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