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There was a time

17 Mar 2022 08:29 #7 by Randy Branson
Replied by Randy Branson on topic There was a time
Larry, I think you nailed it right on the proverbial head.  As a "retired" flight instructor, I have to agree with the line of thought that says the younger folks don't want to spend the time and effort to do what it takes to get a certificate and then maintain it.  It's amazing that so many also think they can "fly" because they have a "flight simulator" at home, so why bother to do the real thing.  In the height of my flight instructing (88-92) I had as many as 8 students at a time.  Now days CFIs, from what I see at local airports not associated with huge flight schools like Auburn University, are maybe nursing along 1 or 2 students (age not a factor).  Why?  One reason is what you said, another is the absolutely crazy cost of aircraft rental and purchase, thirdly and unfortunate are the CFIs who string students along for MANY more instruction hours than are actually needed.  (Granted, some students are slower than others and some require more flight time due to infrequency of flight, but I have talked to more than a few students who are approaching 100+ hours and still are not close to a check ride). 

So, what does that all mean?  Probably not much.  But I can tell you, I love my little Ercoupe.  I've only owned it a year now and take offense with the guy who said it was considered a "poor man's airplane".  It is a simple airplane to be sure, one of the reasons it's fun to fly.  It's one that should not cost an arm and a leg to own,'s simple.  It's one that should be relatively easy to maintain (self or A/P), and it is.  But it is by no means one that should be considered a "poor man's" airplane.  But, compared to what a Cirrus or for that matter a Cessna costs nowdays, maybe it is.  I prefer to think of it as "any man's airplane" rather than "poor man's airplane".  My little bird is going though it's first annual since I bought it.  I'm hoping nothing expensive is found, but I'm willing to do what it takes to preserve this little piece of aviation history.  

About the 'Coupe Capers.  I've been a EOC member for little over a year and looked forward to the Capers hitting my mailbox because I could pick up some valuable information.  I understand that you have to work with what you get and I'm happy that there is something being written.  I too would like to see more than the full page EOC fly-in registrations forms and all the advertisements.  But without folks sending you articles it is what it is.  I wish I had more to offer you, but I know there are many "old timers" out there (and by that I mean folks who have owned 'Coupes more than a year or two) who could provide input.  All of us can benefit.  In the absence of that, there are these forums.

Now, on to what you said about putting together a fly-in.  You do a good job!  I missed yours last year because of a line of convective SIGMETS that would not go away between me and you.  I am hoping to bring the wife to this year's fly-in.   I'm in Region 12...I have to go to another Region (yours) to go to an Ercoupe fly-in because nothing is happening in mine. Seems there's nothing happening in most regions either.  So, I congratulate  your efforts and appreciate that you are putting one together for your Region.

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05 Mar 2022 16:53 #8 by Matt Gunsch
Replied by Matt Gunsch on topic There was a time
 I submitted them using the submit article hyperlink. I should have saved them, as it is, I would have to re-write them.  If there is some topic you would like covered, I can give it a shot. My day job is QA for one of the largest flight schools in AZ with satellite schools located in TX and FL. I oversee the paper and records for over 75 planes. I have been working on Warbirds since I was 12, and doing GA maint for a living since 92. and IA since 95, and pilot since 98,  I have owned my Coupe for 3 yrs and currently maintain 5 other Coupes. Attached is one of the latest project I just finished, replacing the ignition harness on a T-28. 9 cylinder R-1820, There are 18 leads, firing order is 1-3-5-7-9-2-4-6-8, howerver, the leads go into the mags in order of firing, 1=1, 3=2, 5=3, and so on.  

too many years GA and Warbird Maint
Check out the Ercoupe Discussion group on facebook

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04 Mar 2022 16:30 #9 by Warren Hampton
Replied by Warren Hampton on topic There was a time
I am in that older group, My first Coupe ('47 CD 3800H) was 3 yrs younger than I am. I just became Reg 8's Nv wing guy, so I went to FAA list of Coupe in Nv came up with 16 (me for 17,) with only 6 in the Directory that to saying alot.about how the Club is doing.

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04 Mar 2022 15:50 #10 by Larry Snyder
Replied by Larry Snyder on topic There was a time
I’m afraid our aging membership has affected the club. I watched lots of fly-in videos from the 70s to 2000 and the people in it age at about the same pace as the airplanes! I’ll bet the membership in 1980 was 50, on average and now maybe 70-75. Ok, so it’s not a direct correlation, but similar.

This is similar to EAA bemoaning the aging pilot population. So it goes beyond just Ercoupes.

First, how do we make flying cool again?

Second, how do we make Ercoupes cool?

To be a grumpy curmudgeon, I sincerely believe most of the young people do not have the drive and patience to pursue aviation. I’m not going to say money is a problem, since kids seem to be able to get it for things they really want. But getting a certificate takes a lot of book learning and patience learning to fly. You have to take things like safety seriously, almost manically so, something kids don’t do much of nowadays.

Flying requires a passion and commitment most people don’t want to make. Unfortunately, it seems more people were willing to do it in the past. So there are fewer people who are filling our shoes.

The modern virtual world lets you experience a lot of things from your couch, and you can hit the reset button when you screw up. IMHO the ultimate description of our virtual world is NFTs. If you understand what a non-fungible token is, you see how almost everything is sliding from reality to digital. Creepy.

So if I happily pay thousands of dollars for an artwork that exists only in digital files, I may be happy flying the Hudson Exclusion Zone in my SR22 in MS Flight Simulator rather then actually physically doing it in my Ercoupe. I’m sure my heart rate and BP would be better.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Randy Branson

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04 Mar 2022 15:37 #11 by Warren Hampton
Replied by Warren Hampton on topic There was a time
Another thought, Maybe ask the reader to put in their thought for where they want the CLUB to be and how to get there.

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04 Mar 2022 15:28 #12 by Warren Hampton
Replied by Warren Hampton on topic There was a time
Did not intend to slight you out of 10 yrs with the Club, Sorry! I joined in '85. I guess everything changes. But if we just go along then things will only get worst... I really like the Capers, however I have mixed emotions about it, or should it go ? Have people use this site to write into They are being stored here anyhow. And I hardly ever went back to look at them. The big wigs need to poll and see how members want to see the club go or let it Die. Or has it already been set in motion? Like the arcives at Bowling Green U that are haed to get into all that Data they have but hard to get into. It is safe but useless to most of us.

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