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Old 10-28-2013, 08:52 AM
Dgamble's Avatar
Dgamble Dgamble is offline
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 869
Default The Big Flight

I doubt if I am alone in this: during the building of my airplane, there were a number of people who lent support throughout the entire process. One of those for me was/is my father. Without his intervention, my project would have never left the ground, both figuratively and literally. As many of you probably know, my overall build time was increased by a factor of roughly 25% simply because every single time I worked on the airplane, I wrote about it.

The primary purpose of that writing was self-aggrandizement, of course , but nearly as important was keeping my dad up to date on the progress of the build, if for no other reason than it gave him something to talk about with his buddies at the track during the morning horse training sessions.

Not surprisingly, I often thought of the day when I would be able to give him a ride in the airplane that he made possible. That opportunity arose yesterday. Not only was this his first time seeing the plane in all of its splendidly colorful glory, it was also the first cool, clear, and smooth flying weather that would ensure a comfortable, low stress ride.

We didn't go far, nor did we need to. I flew the handful of miles south of the airport to circle his farm so he could get a nice look at it from the air:

I grant that it's hard to tell from the picture, but he really enjoyed it. He's only slightly irked that I made him take his horseman's hat off to put the headsets on:

I imagine everyone has someone that they strive to make proud of their efforts. He's mine, and he is.

What more could I ever ask for?
Dave Gamble
Grove City, OH

RV-6 N466PG Purchased already flying - SOLD!

The Book: The PapaGolf Chronicles

Built RV-12

The Book: Schmetterling Aviation

The above web blogs and any links provided thereto are not instructional or advisory in nature. They merely seek to share my experiences in building and flying Van's RV airplanes.
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Old 10-28-2013, 10:33 AM
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pmccoy pmccoy is offline
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Orange County CA
Posts: 646


It's an accomplishment that not many people have achieved. Being able able to share it with your Dad, Priceless...
Peter McCoy
RV9A N35PM S/N:91335
First Flight: April 2013
Hobbs: 400 hours after Oshkosh 2017
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Old 10-28-2013, 10:40 AM
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Dvalcik Dvalcik is offline
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Royersford, PA
Posts: 883

Glad you were able to get him up with you. While you were flying did you point out where the runway was going on the farm.
Royersford, PA
2021 VAF Supporter

RV12 #568 EAB
* Started 9/30/2011
* 1st flight 8/30/12
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Old 10-28-2013, 12:25 PM
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rv9av8tr rv9av8tr is offline
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 827
Default RV grins for Dads

I hear you completely!
I learned to fly when I was 15 because of my Dad. Since then I've been flying 44 yrs, build 2 airplanes and restored 2 others. Dad is now 83 and try to take him flying as often as possible.

Last month we flew to Salem, OR for dinner at the airport cafe.
Long-EZ built 1985 -> Sold 2007
RV-9A; N539RV First Flight: 7/2010
RV-8A N468DL 40 hr Flight Test Program
Building Log:
APRS Tracking:
2017 Paid
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Old 10-28-2013, 02:50 PM
springer springer is offline
Join Date: May 2012
Location: AZ/MN
Posts: 391
Default sniff, sniff

Originally Posted by Dgamble View Post
What more could I ever ask for?
You nailed it! My WWII career AF pilot dad never thought this long hair Hawaii surfer dude would amount to much. In spite of my fighter/airline career the one RV-4 flight with him topped it all before he passed. Best landing I ever made.
RV-4 '88-'09 Built & Sold
RV-8 Purchased
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Old 10-29-2013, 07:49 AM
fixnflyguy fixnflyguy is offline
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Winston-Salem, N.C.
Posts: 1,465
Default "The dad"

As others have echoed, my father got me into flying at age 12, as he was working on his PPL. At 16, I was working on my PPL and he was getting his various other ratings, often times we talked over the radio to each other mid-lesson. I moved on to a career in aircraft maintenance at age 19 with my A&P and dad quit flying about the same time, but never lost the passion.He always kept up with my flying and building progress sharing stories and experiences. He didnt fly again until almost 30 years later when I finished my RV-4...and he couldnt wait to get in it. We enjoyed several memorable flights together that I wouldnt trade for the world with dad in the backseat, and the sky-is-the-limit smiles...Dad passed this August,but he is with me every flight.
Bill E.
8A7 / Advance NC
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:22 AM
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LettersFromFlyoverCountry LettersFromFlyoverCountry is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: St. Paul, MN.
Posts: 4,826

Sigh. So nice.
Bob Collins
St. Paul, MN.
Blog: Letters From Flyover Country
RV-12iS Powerplant kit
N612EF Builder log (EAA Builder log)
Last article: "Gonna Finish This Sucker" (Kitplanes)
Waiting for the avionics kit (backordered: chip shortage)
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:31 AM
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Lemmingman Lemmingman is offline
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: McKinney, TX
Posts: 689

Outstanding Dave! Fly with him as often as you can. Take him to other tracks and find other ways to fly him about.

I lost my Father in 1993 and I know that he'd be hip deep in my build if he were still here. I'd probably have to tell him to stop working on it because he isn't leaving anything for me to do. The desire to make them proud doesn't end.
Gil Brice
McKinney, TX EAA-1246
RV7 - Working on fuse, fuel, brakes etc...
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Old 10-29-2013, 04:19 PM
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BSwayze BSwayze is offline
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Molalla, Oregon
Posts: 955

This is priceless! Hearing stories about dads is really great, and it looks like this thread might turn into a tribute!

My Dad was at my side during much of my project. He never had any involvement in aviation but he would come over to hang out in the shop and help me out. When I told him I was dreaming about the big day when I could take him up flying and sightseeing, his response was "aw, you'll never get me up in one of these contraptions". But that was at the very beginning.

As progress continued and we saw an airplane beginning to actually take shape, he wasn't so adamant against the idea of going up for a ride. The quality of the kit impressed him. Having a hand in putting this plane together impressed him. We went to fly-ins together and he loved sitting there watching the airplanes land and take off. One day he called me and said "your Mom is out running errands and won't be home for the afternoon. If I hurry, I can sneak out of here and come over and she won't know where I went. Are you going to work on your airplane?" Of course, I didn't turn him down!

I lost him on June 3rd this year. He passed quite suddenly at age 85, and we never did get to take that ride. My plane still isn't quite finished. But honestly, I'm not sure he would have gone up. He just enjoyed helping me out and hanging out in the shop, and he was fascinated by the tools and the methods used. He riveted the top skin on my fuselage while I layed inside with a bucking bar, and those rivets are perfect. RIP, Dad. I miss you, but I will carry those memories forever. And I'm sure you'll be smiling and watching from above when this plane you helped me build takes to the skies.

Helping cut stiffeners for the fuel tanks. He may not look like he's too happy, but he loved this!

Putting the wheels, tubes, and tires together:

Standing in the backgroung behind my brother, the day we hung my engine:

Bruce Swayze
RV-7A Standard Build
First flight November 3, 2019!
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Old 10-29-2013, 05:05 PM
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Gagarin737 Gagarin737 is offline
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 672

With me it was my grandfather that started my interest in aviation. When we were together we were building model aircraft, first free flight thereafter RC. A couple a months before he deceased he made his last flight with me in a DA-40. It's a pity he never saw my completed RV-12.
But when his brother (95 years old!) heard my RV-12 was flying he invited himself for a flight. After hugging my wife way too long (why are eldery man always cute in the eyes of women? They still have the same dirty mind ) he just hopped in. Feels so good when someone enjoys the flight so much!


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