In contrast with flying by aluminum tube in the US, flying a carbon fiber composite soda can can be truly fulfilling.
Last June 21, a work colleague at our office in Indiana asked me to fly with him.
That airplane sure looks sexy.
Three-bladed prop, highT-tail like a Learjet, clamshell polycarbonate canopy… .
This thing had no rivets!
Perfectly smooth, precisely formed slippery skin bonded to the airframe.
We also had a power quadrant with throttle, prop and mixture levers.
And of course, joysticks!
The scenery was spectacular, made more so because of the large bubble canopy. A great cockpit for aerial photos!
Capt R showed me around his home airport, and then we headed south.
The vague plan was to find our boss’s farmhouse and hurl empty beer bottles (which make a satisfying whistling sound on the way down).
Of course we didn’t bring bottles along, which was fine because we couldn’t even find the farmhouse.
Lots of power. Faster than my Cessna soda can’s 90 knots. Way faster. You must think ahead in this airplane.
Which is why it was a good idea to equip with an autopilot.
Our flight was over way too soon. We stretched it out a bit by going around on the first approach, and then Capt R squeaked it on, as I laughed out loud in joy.
We treated ourselves to a steak dinner (his treat, actually). I thoroughly enjoyed flying general aviation in the US again.
During the flight, I kept thinking that somewhere down there, someone was stewing in a long line with no shoes, holding his toothpaste in a plastic bag.
Posted from Tehran, Sep 7, 2007.