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Registered User
Palmer Alaska
Sorry for the subject but I figured it would gather your attention. In light of all the theft subjects, and accidents I figured everyone could use a little of this...

Today, I received control of a shiny new (old) Citab GCBC for the school. After I get a plane I will go wring it out a little and make sure I know all the quirks and then I will turn it loose to the instructors and students. Tonight was no exception. This aircraft was like all the other ones except 31's and vg's. Nice plane. So, I grab the key, unlock the door, throw the key on the dash, jump in and take off. No problem. Steep turns good. Stalls good, everything is great. Nice plane. Then I notice the little placard that says, "This aircraft certified for acrobatics." Now that is a attention grabber. This could be the end of this boring check out. This could be the answer to a otherwise long day. Finally, I am in a acrobatic certified aircraft. So I look at the small print and it says spins use slow entry?? Loops use 145 mph, barrel rolls us 60 mph or at least thats what I thought it said because it was a dark outside. My thinking was, "oh the hell with it I will do it my way." This is where the action started.

The first thing I would do is a spin or two or three. A couple spins to the left and a couple to the right made me feel pretty invincible. So I figured a couple of steep pull ups with a hammerheaded thingy would be kinda cool. Maybe one them chandelle, razor s back things were in order. Anyhow, about that time I managed to get the darn thing all the way on its back or at least that is where I thought It was because it was still dark outside and I couldn't really see anything. This is where it got a little weird. You know that red instrument post light thing that shines light on the instruments?? Well, it did a good job of illuminating the key I had on the dash as it went straight for my right eye. The pain was incredible. I saw my life flash before my one good eye. The dirt in the bottom of the airplane flashed like glitter before it went up my nose and in my other eye. Luckily I couldn't see outside anyway as that probably would have scared me to death. I would have screamed but it would have been just a puff of dirt. This is kind of where I asked myself, "self, what in the hell are you trying to do?" Then it all became clear to me. I need a vacuum and some safety glasses.

Sorry it is the best I had and yes, most of it is a lie, right?

Someday I will tell you the story of the PA-11 and my loss of pants.
little humor

Thanks I needed that I thought I ws the only one who could "make up a story" from what happens when I'm by myself..
Airobatic Thingy

Arctic I am so glad to hear you have an aerobatic airplane, I was following Jerry around the other day and I think that it my be the perfect solution :lol:

When I am back from hunting camp, I will give a shout and we can go have some fun.
That story sparked a memory

25 + years ago...I had had some recent aerobatic training in a Citabria and a Chipmonk, so of course I knew everything :roll:, and then I found myself sitting in a Cessna Aerobat. Of course I had to roll it.

I pitched down to build some airspeed and then pitched up to start the roll. I cranked in the aileron to start the roll, and I experienced a roll rate that seemed to be measurable in hours. If I would have had a cell phone back then, I probably could have brought it out, snapped some pictures, and sent a text or two while waiting for it to go around. In the slow process of rolling, I took my hand off of the full throttle and put it on front edge of the right seat. After what seemed like minutes gone by, I found myself upside down and only halfway through the roll. It had taken so long to get there, and I still had decent airspeed, so I figured I may as well not waste the time so - inverted flight. I braced myself for the impending negative gs, and pushed on the stick. This is where the fun began. The bucket in the back that I had forgotten about, full of spare parts, hit the ceiling, the right seat cushion that I had grabbed for brace, only velcro'd down, was now floating between me and the panel, and then the engine promptly - quit (something about inverted oil but not fuel). It was now time for a loop, split s, or something. Knowing/hoping that once I had + gs the engine would come back to life, full power still set, I needed to get the throttle back to prevent the impending over speed. I reached for the throttle, but my arm was deflected by the right seat cushion that was still drifting around the cockpit, and my hand went through where a not very secure round cover plate was plugging a removed instrument hole. With my right hand wedged in the hole, it acted like a Chinese handcuff. I needed to get my left hand there to release it, but I now had a seat cushion trapped vertical in my lap, and blocking my every move. The engine snapped back to life, and I was now entering a dive with full throttle, and still not able to free my hand or reach the throttle, so back into a roll and cautious airspeed management...

I bet it all looked pretty amazing from the ground.
Sort of the opposite for me. I took some basic aerobatic training in a CAP 10 years ago. Later I owned a Great Lakes 2T1A-2. I always said I would only do aerobics in a plane certified for it, with a chute and up high. So I strapped on my chute, climbed to 5000 feet and did a loop. When I got done I said to myself " I didn't like that much".

The chute stayed in my closet and went to the new Lakes owner a few years later. I'd rather do an ILS to minimums.

I don't get sick. I have flown as a passenger with a friend who flew with the Northern Lights Team in an Extra 300. I just don't enjoy doing it by myself. I guess in some ways, that's like sex. :)
I do eight slow rolls each week. One is usually a hesitation roll. After #6, I am starting to feel a bit quisinart. I no longer do loops - the bottom end does make me sick. An Immelman suffices. I sold my chutes years ago.

i would not have had the guts to spin anything with 31" tires.
I learned to fly at Montgomery in San Diego in the middle seventies at an aerobatic school called California Aerobatics, that had 7KCAB Citabrias and 8KCAB Decathlons. Bob, you may remember it. It was owned mostly by a couple of PSA jet drivers. I loved those airplanes. They even had the first 2T1A-1 Great Lakes off the assembly line. 20+ hours of acro before my private check ride. :smile: So much for unusual attitudes!

I rolled a 7GCBC once. It took most of the afternoon. Ponderous is a good description. Still fun though, even after wiping the oil off. 8) It's a damn nice airplane except for the roll rate. No Cub though.

We even (unofficially of course) learned how to tumble and tail slide the Decathlons (not all that bright in retrospect...). I liked them much so I bought a '77 Super Decathlon new. I was told it was the first one on the west coast. I kept it in the desert where I worked for a while then leased it back to Art Scholl when he moved to Rialto in '78, and finally sold it to him. I liked aerobatics enough I bought a Stephens Akro. I competed as far as advanced before I decided to rebuild it... not a good idea since I never finished. It's in Italy now, hopefully to fly again. But it did get me into the Cub 21 years ago, which I've spun but never rolled or looped. No reason to, really. I know it works, but it's going to be a pig, so what's the point?

I still wanted to do aerobatics, so a couple of years ago I bought a mid-wing Extra 300. I had to fly it with a couple fingers and my thumb for awhile since the controls are a bit more effective and responsive than the Cub. ;-) After the Cub, it's a bit like driving a race car on the street, not to mention really loud inside. Lots of work to repair hidden damage though, so I haven't been able to fly it much. Then I forgot to latch the canopy on takeoff a couple of months ago. :oops: Way too much excitement, and broken plexiglass flying around. I'm waiting for a replacement now. Then I'll see whether I'm too damn old for this aerobatics stuff. 'Chutes are current. I want to tumble! I think! :roll:

Well, you guys all had me laughing at some point

Kindof got sober real quick when I realized this is an old thread and one of these guys has gone West

thanks guys. You all tell a good story! D
I'm perfectly content with point A to B stuff now, so all of my intentional aerobatic memories will likely remain + 25 yrs old. 8)
O.k. Loss of pants.

But first, we had a good summer using a 7ECA. I like that airplane. I have instructed a little over 20 years and most of that was in Cubs and Citabrias, Taylorcrafts and whatnot. The Citab is one of my favorites. For one, it has heat. Good heat. It doesn't freeze your right side but the front is cooking and your left foot goes dead from numbness. It has heat that lets you know that after 5 hours in it you just might make it out alive. The Cubs do o.k. Sure, I know you have better Cub heat that the next guy but stock to stock, a Citabria has good heat. I swear i'll teach for for free if it has good heat. My Dad used to freeze me to death when I was a little kid, hunting. I'm cold thinking about it.


I got off work flying the big Douglas and wanted to head to Valdez. It was one of those years where it was really nice. I headed out from Anchorage to Palmer and took a quick shower. I had to haul butt because I wanted to go to Tazlina to see Mom and join Pops so we could fly down together. So, i grabbed a couple of root beers and a sandwich. I threw a duffel bag in the back and some other crap I'm sure i didn't need. I think I brought beer.

So, I swung the prop and I was airborne. It was around 70 degrees and I marveled at how lucky I was to be flying down that early in the year with such warm weather. I was climbing through about 3,000 feet trying to get over the Matanuska wind and if you have ever flown a PA-11 that is full of gas, it takes a while. It seemed like it was taking forever. I had the window open since I was getting a little sleepy. I reached around and grabbed one of those ice-cold root beers. If you have ever been traveling East out of Palmer it pays on windy days to go over high and back low. So, I kept climbing. 4,000. 5,000 went by. All good and i reached down to open that root beer. I wasn't really looking at what I was opening since I was amazed I could even get that airplane so high. About that time it was like a bomb went off. I look down through a volcano of brown liquid foam to see my root beer treating be wrong. Who the hell would of thought 16 ounces of sticky rootbeer sh!@, could make it's way up my pantlegs, all the way to my underwear. AND it did not stop I'm sure till I threw the bottle out the window. I was like, "what the serious...was that." I had rootbeer in my ears, up my nose, in the back seat, on the windshield. It was a root-beer apocolypse. I **** you not.

You know when ask your self, What do I do know?" I actually asked myself that out loud. I had a decision to make. It was either go back home and lose the night. It was descend and it really took something like 45 min. to even get here. I had NO extra pants with me. I was sticky. I was sticky like hard candy in the bottom of your trucks coffee holder sticky. What I needed was a lake to get all this off me and the plane. God it was so horrible. I almost cried. But, my folks were waiting for me so I decided to press on. That, my friends was the first link in the old chain of events to failure. Now, I am not a over weight fat guy but I am no small guy either. I thought about the options and I came up with this. If i just simply take my pants off and let them dry in the back, they should be dry by the time I get to the lodge. I changed my shirt easily enough and I saw the other root-beer. No, i didn't open it. Learned that little lesson about 15 minutes ago.

So, I pulled my shoes off and threw them in the back. I remember how hard they were to get off since they were kinda stuck to the floor. I pulled my right leg out of my trousers and it seemed to be going pretty good. (if you want to know how comfortable you are flying your plane? Take your pants off and put them back on.) I started to pull my left leg out but that leg was pretty welded to the inside of my jeans. I gotta tell you A&W makes one hell of a root-beer. Anyhow, about the time I pulled them off, I kind of swung my pants inside out and I knocked the mags off. It was pretty instant. (There is no coming back from this story, is there?) So, I was having one of those no pants, no engine, stuck in a sticky situation kind of afternoon. Folks, I don't take alot of pictures, but let me try and paint this for you. I got the mags back on, no sweat, but my pants flew all the way into the back of the baggage. There is no getting your pants back from anywhere more than two feet in back of you. I remember thinking, I hope Dad shows up first when I land.

So, that is pretty much where the story ends. Mom and Dad showed up together as I was standing there in my Underoos and my bare feet. I have seen my Mom very few times with a horrifed look on her face. That day, she had a horrifed look. I am fairly confident Dad didn't even notice. I thought that was a little strange also.

Good day. Please don't judge me.
Oh that's funny and brings back memories.

Anyone remember when the Air Pot thermos first came out? Late 70's my mom bought one and filled it with chicken broth for a trip she, dad and I were taking. Dad and I were up front at 11.5 when mom asked if anyone was hungry and unfortunately I said yes... once she pushed the pump button on that thing it discharged its entire two quarts of steaming hot soup into the interior of dad's brand new 210... forget the schedule we immiediately landed (Greensburg Kansas) and after I rmoved all three seats and while I pulled the carpet out and hosed it down on the ramp dad swabbed down the rest all without saying a word to mom until we loaded back up (wet carpet in the baggage) and when mom started to put the Air-Pot back in dad said "Martha, if you put that bomb back in my airplane you're walking"

Moms gone but its one of those funny family stories dad still remembers at 97.

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I think there is an Air Pot at my store, I'm gonna buy it and put it in your 180.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
I think there is an Air Pot at my store, I'm gonna buy it and put it in your 180.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
If it has yellow daisy's on it tape some tannerite to it and hold it up, I'll be right over with dad.
Reminds me of a flight my instructor, Jerry, told me about yrs ago.

I can't remember what type of airplane it was - I just remember when he started telling me the story, about loading up his pregnant wife, two small boys, and supplies from a long weekend into it, I had thought to myself how I hoped to fly an airplane that big someday.

Anyway, there they were, climbing out, at night, somewhere over Colorado, with his pregnant wife now half asleep in the right seat, and roughly 2 and 3 yr old boys in the back seat sound asleep. When all of a sudden! from somewhere? maybe aft? Came a very "loud" 'BANG!' - A real heart skip a beat moment!

Not wanting to alarm his wife, who was now wide awake and staring at him intently with a worried "WHAT WAS THAT!" kind of look, Jerry put on a cool as a cucumber and all systems normal face, and tried not to look panicky around with an "I HAVE NO IDEA" kind of look. Mean while in his mind he was imagining the worst. A quick scan of the instruments revealed nothing. Completely puzzled and not sure where the blast had come from, the thought of an emergency-landing at night over rough terrain was causing some added stress. Still not wanting to make it obvious to his wife that he was seriously worried, while trying to look casual and not make it look obvious that he was looking for damage, he slowly turned his head around to inspect for missing parts. And then he saw the cause of the explosion. There in the back seat were his two young boys smiling, and eating the potato chips off of each other from the exploded bag of potato chips.