Sun 'n Fun 2004

By Ken Strite

Here are some pics from Sun-N-Fun. I finally got my plane flying yesterday and flew it over there today. Spent 2 hours circling Lake Parker because they closed the airport 3 times for 2 incidents. The 35 minute flight over turned into a 3-plus hour flight with a refueling stop. I didn't expect Scott to show up but he was there along with Norm Tanner.

This is a story of what I ended up going thru to get it there...

I put the left wing on my plane last Tuesday and fueled it Wednesday. (Right wing had been installed Easter Sunday) About 6 hours later I was defueling the left wing because it had a seep but when I tried to pro-seal the seep it turned into a flood. Thursday after it all dried out I pro-sealed the leaking area and put a heat lamp on it until late Fri night when I put 5 gallons in and held my breath overnight.

Also Thursday morning I tried to start the plane....engine wouldn't start.. and the starter Bendix stuck engaged. I pulled the starter off and disassembled the bendix and found it locked up so I drove over to Sun-N-Fun to buy a starter...the only type anyone had there was a Sky Tec starter...then drove home and put it on.

Friday I tried again to start the plane and it just wouldn't fire. Took the mags off and found the points shorted in both of them (corrosion I guess) cleaned them up and reinstalled and timed the mags. Then it started up like a champ. Tried to put the cowl on and found that it didn't fit because the new starter was wider than the old one and it caused me to have to move the oil cooler outboard just a bit. When I moved it outboard it interfered with the cowling.

Sat morning I went to find the left wing seeping again but checking it I found it to be from a different place and to be a leak I could live with until the annual next month. Re-repositioned the oil cooler to a position that would allow the cowl to fit. Pumped all the drained fuel back into the left tank. Installed the cowl, washed 8 months of dirt off the plane.... went flying so I could have just a little confidence landing it in the high pressure fly-in environment. I'm not sure what to do with myself every day after work now that I don't have that project and goal any more........


From left to right: Ken Strite, Scott DeGaynor and Norm Tanner

A shot from the back

Scott and Norm in front of the Scott's rig (built by Takas)

Norm with his BD-4 (built by Hugo Scheider)

The author with his plane (built by Johnson and Mahan)