Monday, 12 November 2007

2005 - A Germ of an Idea

I have owned and operated G-BRIH since August 1998 having persuaded her (I maintain that all aircraft are feminine) previous owner that he needed to sell her, and I was the person he was going to sell to. His subsequent pleadings for me to sell her back fell on deaf ears.

Since 1998, I have modified IH by swapping the Continental A65-8 engine for a C85-8 engine, a fairly painless process except for a sharp pain in the wallet every now and again. This completely changed the aircraft from a slightly overweight, underpowered but adequate machine into one that just leapt into the skies and said let's go have fun.

To help save weight I also removed an extended baggage compartment and after re-weighing had managed to lose 30 lbs in weight. This still meant that IH's empty weight was around 865 lbs which is heavy for this type of aircraft, some examples being between 800 - 820 lbs.

Looking back in the aircraft log books also reveals that the fabric (Razorback; fibreglass) has been on the aircraft for over 35 years and although it is in good condition (well it's almost indestructible) I think it's time that I checked out what is going on underneath.

Soooo.. back in 1987 or there abouts the decision was made to restore IH. The timing was based on finances and when Rob Lees (Mr Taylorcraft UK) finished restoring his aircraft G-BREY. Then I could nick all his expertise and jigs. What I didn't have was anywhere to carry out a restoration. Rob has used his house as a workshop but I didn't have that option, nor did I have a garden big enough to plant an oversize garden shed and call it a workshop.

Having got the germ of an idea - the hunt was on for a premesis.