Friday, July 27 at AirVenture

If you’re wondering what this solid looking homebuilt is, it’s a Murphy Moose with a 400 h.p. 9 cylinder radial. It has a max. gross weight of 3500 pounds and a useful load of around 1350 and carries 100 gallons of fuel.

I’ve seen a couple Murphy Rebels before which are impressive looking sisters to the Moose, but not this. This thing stalls with full flaps at 38 mph and cruises along at 108 to 135 knots depending on how much money you want to pour into an engine. I saw it fly and it’s a beauty – wish I’d been in it.

And then, from a distance, I thought I saw a Rebel and thought “this is too good to be true”! I wanted to compare the two and get some sense of size and proportion between the Moose & the Rebel. Luckily the owner/builder Si Smith based at Brodhead was there and gave me the Rebel tour. I should tell you this all happened yesterday because this perfect taildragger rode out the wind shear that hit OSH Thursday and sadly was damaged. Si took it over to Homebuilt Repair today and found the damage was even worse than initially thought – cracked spar. He’ll be trailering it home. Darn shame.

Today was a very good “girlie” day at AirVenture and kicked off with a Women In Aviation breakfast at 8:00.

Big crowd, amazing number of women pilots and I even found a few taildragger pilots in the group!

We even got to hear a few words from the famous Corky Fornof, pilot extraordinaire and currently the Director of Flight Operations and chief test pilot for LoPresti Aviation.

Then off to the Square for the 10:30 WIA group picture shot with Fifi. I know they had 1500 tshirts and this shot I took is only one little part of the group.

Of course, a few of us hams had to grab one of the many guys standing in the wings, hand him our iphones and say “please take our picture”!

Remember those donuts I was telling you about? Hey, I’m not the only one that likes them – this little gal may like them even more than me!

And if all that’s not good enough, today was our second LLT lunch meetup at the Hilton Garden Inn’s rooftop restaurant this week. Take a very, very good look at this picture. I’m in the middle in the LLT tshirt but ignore me – who is that to my left?

Martha King! She arrived with Sandy Maurer shortly after most of us had grabbed our seats and it was a real treat to meet her. Unfortunately, she was meeting John for lunch and just wanted to say “hi”. Good enough! We managed to get her in our picture though somehow. Thank you to all the ladies who joined us and their guests; lady taildragger pilots, nose wheel pilots giving taildraggin’ some thought, non-pilots thinking about flying and especially the young high school student who is passionate ….. make that obsessed…. with biplanes :). I loved her and loved her enthusiasm! (Sorry I’m not mentioning names but I left my trusty notebook in my airplane this afternoon.) More later!

Another great day at AirVenture! Sadly, my last full day here. Tomorrow my plan is to depart for Indy after the ground fog burns off. They’re forecasting VFR after 9:00 a.m. and if that actually happens there’s going to be a LONG line of aircraft lining up to depart. Should be another interesting day!

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