Sunday, June 29, 2008

Our Plane

We got a plane.

WE GOT A PLANE WE GOT A PLANE CAN YOU BELIEVE IT WE GOT A PLANE OUR VERY OWN PLANE A TRUE REAL AIRPLANE THAT I CAN FLY AND FLY AND ITS AN AIRPLANE AND WE HAVE IT WE GOT IT AN AIRPLANE OH MY GOODNESS GREGORY WE GOT AN AIRPLANE A TIGER ITS AN AIRPLANE A REAL LIVE AIRPLANE THAT WE CAN FLY I CAN FLY IT MYSELF WHENEVER I WANT BECAUSE ITS OUR AIRPLANE AND I CAN FLY IT!


Ahem.

Returning to my usual, dignified self -- we just closed a deal on an airplane. We decided about a month ago to buy one, and decided on a Grumman Tiger for a whole bunch of reasons that I'll explain in another post. Suffice it to say, for now, that the Tiger is fast, handles well, has a great useful load with a wide center of gravity envelope, is fuel efficient, and is a neat airplane in a lot of little ways, such as the fighter-like sliding canopy.

I have shopped all over. I came close to buying one in Arizona, but the seller ( a large aircraft broker) was clearly not being forthcoming about the plane. I went to see one on Long Island, and I saw one in Lapeer, Michigan. Then this one turned up at the airport where I grew up in Maine, only six miles from my parents' house. I talked to the seller for quite a while, had a mechanic inspect it, and otherwise learned everything I could about it.




It is a 1979 Gulfstream American Corp. AA-5B Tiger. It has a Lycoming O-360, four-cylinder engine that puts out 180 horsepower. The engine has about 525 hours since its last major overhaul, and the maintenance records are meticulous. It has fixed (non-retractable) gear and a fixed-pitch propeller. It has seats for four people and has a baggage compartment behind the rear seats.

The seats. The seats on our Tiger are newly done in beautiful leather.


The instrument panel has one of everything I could ask for, including approach-certified, moving map GPS, autopilot, strikefinder, and audio inputs for my iPod. The only thing I could possible ask would be for newer equipment, but that newer equipment couldn't give me much more capability.


I flew by airliner to Maine on Saturday to inspect the airplane myself and possibly seal the deal. The seller wasn't available on Saturday evening, so I had a nice dinner with my dad, spent some time with my parents, and then visited with my brother, sister-in-law, and two nephews. The younger of the two, Owen, is putting heart and soul into learning to crawl. The older boy, Emerson, was in high speed cogitation over going to see the airplane, crazy legs and all.



(Did you hear Owen yelling "Da!" over and over in the background?)


So we all went to see it on Sunday morning. And it is pretty much everything I could ask for in a plane. The paint is original, but in good condition. It could use a paint job someday, but it's in better condition that many of the planes I've been flying.

Perhaps best of all, Emerson seemed to heartily approve.


So we bought it.

The seller is going to deliver it, perhaps tomorrow. And I am neither sleeping nor accomplishing anything at work. Instead I am reading manuals for the various avionics, etc. And waiting, waiting, waiting for the weather to be good enough so the seller can fly it down.

WE GOT A PLANE!

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

A flying tiger ...

Life is grreat!

11:11 AM  
Blogger Jess said...

CONGRATS! When do I get a ride?

12:51 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home