I consider VAF somewhat of an E/AB Swiss Army Knife of blog sights. It is a great place to find help on whatever RV model you are building, a great place to find great building tips, ideas for mods, unending eternal debates of primers or nose dragger/tail dragger debates.....and the list goes on and on and on....
But one of the greatest things of this site is the folks you get to meet as the result of communicating on the forum. I am so often amazed at the great folks you meet in aviation as a whole(yes and the sour grapes are there too!). But I think that you meet people on the VAF forum that DR has provided that up the level of being top class of the aviation community.....one of those people that I have been privileged to acquaint and befriend is Gary Palinkas...The Ambassador of Venice (FL).
I met Gary a couple years ago while at Venice and we have become friends since. Gary gave me my FIRST ride in an RV....a memorable flight indeed in his RV6.5(RV6 with a -7 vert stab/rudder)
Fast forward. Some time ago Gary asked if I would like to have access to an RV on my trips to Venice that take place several times a year.
Hmmmm....after considering this for about 5 seconds....I said SURE!!! So Gary checked me out in his aircraft...but I had not flown it solo. So coming to VNC yesterday, I spoke with Gary and asked about going on dawn patrol...we met at the hanger at 0630....I found Gary already at the hanger prepping the airplane...and the sky beckoning to us!
We cranked up and pierced the sky of a beautiful Florida morning!
During the flight Gary would point out the features and idiosyncrasies of his airplane. It was a local flight in the cool of the morning. After a while we decided to go back and land.
That's when Gary suggested I take her solo and see how she is with only one on board. GULP....ok will give it a shot. It is always stressful to borrow other folks stuff.....but it multiplies when you know they have invested hundreds...no thousands of hours of sweat, cuts, frustration, etc. on building an airplane
Well.....ok here goes!