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Summer 2005
So here's how I spent my Summer vacation. It started out having fun, going for rides and then panic set in as I had so much to do getting the plane ready for Oshkosh. I had my interior done by Shelby Flythe and Suzzane Chance in Las Vegas. Scott Alair had offered a ride back and Jim Cohello offered a ride so I could pick up the finished plane. I am totally thrilled with the outcome and it makes flying that more enjoyable.

I took a trip up to Bend, Oregon to have some help relocating one of my batteries to the back behind the baggage area for a better CG. While up there I met up with Carsten Sundin, who helped design and engineer the Legacy. I took Patrick over to Columbia for the Father's Day fly-in and see my close friend Jim Thomas. Also a Legacy builder, Jim is the airport manager there too.

The weeks leading up to Oshkosh were spent getting the final things done to the plane for show. I had Steve Cowell and Dennis Johnson stop by and check out the plane to help them keep moving forward with theirs. Steve and Claudette Cowell currently have an RV-6 that they are looking forward to selling when their Legacy is finished sometime in 2006. Both are super great people.

Oshkosh 2005
We got to the airport before 6:00 a.m. All there was to do was pull the plane out and strap in. Patrick and I had come out the day before to load the plane and check it all out. Before 7:00 we had passed Lake Tahoe and were over Nevada. Neither of us had seen the Great Salt Lake and it was enormous. The clouds over the salt flats looked like polka dots and made an interesting pattern. Our first leg ended at Kemmer, WY for gas. $270.00/gal. was worth the stop. Also, we didn't want to go any more than 3 hours per leg. It was good to get out and stretch a bit. A really nice little airport. It was just us and a Piper Tri Pacer. We checked the weather on a computer left in a "pilot room" and blasted off to the midwest.

We had expected a few isolated thunderstorms near Souix City, SD, but it turned out more developed and after climbing over it to 17,500, we needed to divert a bit to the south and pick another airport for the second gas stop. We ended up in Fairmont, MN and it was a great stop. I was really impressed by the network of family farms in Minnesota and the beauty of the midwest. Upon landing we found a huge FBO facility and Patrick crashed on the couch while I took the airport car into town to get him some ice cream and air sickness pills (poor guy).

Fond Du Lac was our next waypoint to enter the high performance entry procedure and was just under an hour. This trip was our first time at Oshkosh and while on final I was struck by the number of planes already on the fields. WOW. It already was an incredible journey and we saw GPS speeds from 250 to 265 Knots the whole day. Our let-down gave us 290 Knots for the last 50 miles. The trip was about 6:45 minutes in flying time. Not bad for a single-engine aircraft burning 13 gallons per hour.

Monday morning we spent about an hour cleaning the plane and getting it ready to show. All the while we were meeting new friends and people I had been e-mailing with for a couple of years. We would come up and look around at all the planes on the ground along with all the planes in the air and we were just completely overwhelmed. Patrick and I thought maybe going to see the museum would be a great first stop while we decided what to do next. Except for the Lancair, all of my favorite planes are taildraggers and the Pitts is just even more than special to me.

Some of the show highlights were seeing the new Radial Rocket, ViperJet, the P-40s, Mustangs and Bearcats. For Patrick it was taking a helicopter ride, buying his first RC plane, playing MS Flight Simulator and endless hot dogs.

I have never seen an airshow like this, nor will I ever. It is incredible and I look forward to making this trip each year now. I got to participate in the builder's showcase fly-by and that was a huge thrill. Dan Balin took a lot of the pictures of the fly-by along with my friend Scott Germain. He writes for InFlight. Along with shooting at air shows and Reno. Be sure to see his web site, Thanks Scotty!

After six straight days of airplanes (tough life) we were looking forward to getting home. Patrick and I got an early start and dodged clouds all the way across Minnesota. Our first gas stop was Huron, SD. The advertised gas price was about .70 higher when we got there (3.95/gallon), but what are you going to do? But Patrick had his first Steak and Eggs and having them in South Dakota made it that much more special. The FBO was first rate and the people more than helpful. We got back in our little bird and headed for Mount Rushmore for a bit of sight-seeing. We ended up back in Kemmer, WY for some cheap gas and a little stretching. The lonely Tri Pacer was still there along with nothing else but old hangars and whistling wind.

Back over the Great Salt Lake, Nevada and we landed at RHV with a trip total of almost 7:30 of flying time. As we unloaded the Legacy, we though nobody would believe how much we had packed into it, so we staged a photo-shoot. We really had all of that in the plane!

Don and Patrick

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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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