The BiplaneThe Spirit of Adventure I
I bought this incredibly beautiful biplane in 1993,
It was the 50th one they built, so they were very proud of it.
I told them I couldn't fly, but that didn't seem to matter.
Until I tried to fly it for the first time in a crankin' crosswind.
After two hours of torturing the biplane, chief pilot Carl Dye said:
"Tell me again how long you've been a pilot?"
I told him: "I'm not a pilot."
He says: "We don't really teach people how to fly here."
So I told him: "Let's get this biplane back to San Diego, and I'll figure it out from there."
And so the adventures began...
This is the airplane I used to learn how to fly.
It was an extraordinary feeling to finally fly solo,
and then to earn my Private Pilot license (November 18, 1993) in this work of art.
(click for BIG image)
One of my instructors (some wannabe pilots need more than one teacher) decided to do a check flight after some routine maintenance, but he came in for a landing with the parking break on. Boy, was he surprised when it flipped over the instant of touchdown!
He was unhurt (except for his pride), but the biplane was a total loss.
On that day, February 24, 1994, he earned the call-sign "Flipper".
I traded the broken bits, and the insurance settlement, for a new biplane.
This is biplane number two, purchased May 1994.
The biplane is also outfitted with a video camera in the right lower wing, wired to a VCR and monitor in the cockpit. With this setup I can make videos (or watch them!) as I fly.
Other special features: Auxiliary fuel tanks. Total fuel 72 gal. Total endurance 4+ hours. Range approximately 400 miles depending on winds, using cruising airspeed of 100 mph.
Baggage: 75 lbs. in rear baggage compartment, 25 lbs in the front baggage compartment.
to buy one of your own, new or used,
or just to look at some neat photos,
and learn more about this unique aircraft,
click on the link below
in Battle Creek, Michigan