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Spring 2005
It's so nice to have the plane back and to really begin to enjoy it. We had a party out at my hangar and I took the kids, friends and my next-door neighbor for a ride. I made my first trip to visit with Steve and Claudette Cowell to help with the Legacy they are building. Steve is very much a perfectionist and extremely meticulous, so progress has been slow. He and Claudette will end up with a gorgeous aircraft and his tip lights look even nicer than mine. It was a great visit and I enjoyed "building a Legacy" again (for a day).

My first BIG trip was with one of my closest friends, Dan Yetso. We took off right after sunrise to drop some shirts off at Mohave, CA for the Formation clinic. While there we saw the SpaceShip One and visited with Jon Sharp who has some exciting things being developed besides his Nemesis NXT. I got to sit in it and get a feel for a plane I'd REALLY love to own, but it's a bit out of my spending plan for now.

We departed Mohave and got to sight-see along the way past Edwards Air Force Base, Lancaster, Apple Valley and landed in North Las Vegas to visit with Shelby Fligth and Suzanne Chance. They are the two responsible for designing and producing the interiors for the Epic. I'm fortunate to have them doing my interior. We discussed design, colors and materials. These are some of the nicest, most genuine people I have come across. A very nice visit.

Our trip home was breath-taking. We crossed over the Sierras near Mt. Whitney and flew down the Yosemite canyon weaving in and out of clouds and taking tons of pictures and making movies along the way. Click here to download some great footage from movie 1 and movie 2.

After getting back it was the usual half-hour of cleaning off bugs and sipping cocktails.

My next big trip was to Sedona, AZ to visit with a client I do a lot of business with. The flight was beautiful and I took shots along the way of Death Valley, Lone Pine, Las Vegas, Hoover Dam and the Grand Canyon. I stayed over night and flew out the next morning to land in Chandler, AZ to meet up with Scotty Germain who had been asking me to come down for an air-to-air photo shoot. Carl Lewis and John Halle were in town on business and came out to see the plane and take a few shots too. We love our Legacies and enjoy talking about them.

The photo shoot was fun and I enjoyed flying formation. The best part was getting some pictures of my own plane with the gear up. I let Scotty fly my plane and got to see and experience his own little race course he is using to practice for Reno. You can read about his story in his own words at

Another enjoyable flight home. No standing in lines, no taking off my clothes and no sitting in the center seat of a cattle car with wings. I have my iPod for music, sunscreen for protection, camera for pictures and ice cold water to sip. It just doesn't get any better.

After 70 hours of flight time it was time to change the oil and do some modification to the baffling. #6 runs hot and needed a bit more air flow the cutting down of the forward panel got it down 15 degrees and I believe when I connect the RAM-air (to come) it will allow the air to flow better. I am convinced it's disrupting the air flow. We'll see.

Steve Green was in our area to give a talk about paint preparation at Scott Alair's EAA chapter and I agreed, along with other of "Steve's Air Force", to show the plane at the meeting. I also said I would take him home. I had just removed my passenger side rudder peddles and that made for lots of leg room on his side. The thing about Steve is not only do you end up with a wonderfully painted airplane, you get a good friend too. I can't speak highly enough of Steve and would recommend him to anyone who appreciates a great finish.

When Steve and I got to Ashland we made a low breaking approach over his home airport to make a little noise and have a bit of fun. I added twenty gallons of gas to my plane, said goodbye and departed for Las Vegas to leave my plane with Shelby and Suzzane who are doing my interior. Along the way south I got some incredible views of Honey Lake (dry), Reno, NV, Lake Tahoe, Walker Lake, Bridgeport, CA and Mono Lake. What other aircraft can get you from the Bay Area, to Central Oregon, to Las Vegas and back while only burning about 60 gallons of gas? The Legacy.

Scott Alair offered a ride back to San Jose for a tank full of gas and met me in North Las Vegas. Another quick crossing of the Sierras thanks to Lancair...and Scott!

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Copyright © 2005. All rights reserved. This site is the builder's log of Don Barnes and for the purpose of sharing information and opinions related to building a Lancair Legacy. Any person using these images, ideas and tips does so at their own discretion and risk. No responsibility is expressed or implied and is without recourse against anyone related to this site. This site is not affiliated with Lancair International or Neico Aviation Inc., however, we love their aircraft.

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