2000: The year I bought a plane!
Last updated Saturday, 07-Jun-2003 08:54:41 EDT
Again, in 1999 while I was a student pilot, my friend Larry kept nagging me to check out a Grumman Tiger. Rob Logan responded and put me in the left seat of his N123VB. I was impressed. The Tiger was fun.n123VB.jpg
Photo by unknown.
Having secured my private pilot certificate on December 12, 1999, I got serious about buying a plane. Because I wanted a certified (not experimental) airplane with easy ingress and egress (two doors or a canopy) my choices were limited to a piston Cessna, a Commander, a Trinidad, a Cirrus, a Columbia or a Tiger. My budget (OK, some remaining semblance of good sense) limited me to a looking at used aircraft.

Meanwhile, Larry (one of the guys who got me started in flying) signed a contract for a Cirrus SR-20 with delivery anticipated in 2002 or 2003. But more about Larry and his airplane(s) purchases later...
Meanwhile, I continued flying with Rob and came to enjoy his Tiger more and more (but he wouldn't sell it). In early February, after a Lifeline Pilots flight to Evansville, IN (EVV), Rob and I flew on first to visit Bill and Carol Scott (and their cats) at their Precision Engine shop in Owensboro, KY (OWB). I was trying to get educated on pre-buy inspections and annuals, etc.neweng.gif
Image courtesy Precision Engine.
From Precision Engine we flew on to Pickens, South Carolina (LQK) to check out a 1992 Tiger that was for-sale. Had that 1992 Tiger been the plane for me, I would have used Bill & Carol's services for a pre-buy annual. But, for a variety of reasons, that 1992 Tiger turned out not to be the plane for me after all.n592sm.jpg
In late March 2000, I posted a "want to buy a Tiger" note to the Grumman Gang e-mailing list. On April 1, 2000 I got a response detailing a 1991 Tiger for sale in Louisville KY (LOU). Rob came to my aid yet again. We arranged to fly down to LOU on April 15th in his plane to check out that Tiger, N11934. On the way we made a short stop at Columbus, OH (CMH) to fly in a (not-for-sale) Trinidad TB-20 - I was curious because early 1980 TB-20's were selling for about the same price as 1990's Tigers. The TB-20 was nice, but more airplane than I needed.

Getting to Louisville, I quickly found that I liked the owners and the for-sale Tiger, N11934 (white/maroon/gray). To make a long story short, after negotiations, a lot of paperwork (and help from AOPA's escrow service), and an annual (pre-purchase) inspection done near Dayton Ohio, I was ready to take possession of that Louisville Tiger on May 17, 2000. Rob once again helped me out. He recruited another friend to take us to Dayton in that friend's home-built Lancair-4P (one nice and wicked fast aircraft!).
Finally with Rob's right-seat support, I flew my Tiger home to CGF that same day.

From May 'till September, N11934 was tied down and well covered at Beckett Aviation (known as Eagle's Wings Aviation for a couple of years and now known as Corporate Wings).
Photo by unnamed friend of Rob's.
In September 2000 I got my N11934 into a T hanger at CGF. This is one of the county T hangers without walls between the stalls and without electricity. It was keeping the plane here that necessitated my constructing a preheater not needing electricity. Further, I got physically stronger with the snow shoveling and opening and closing an old, very heavy and creaky door!

Not being a fool, I had already put my name on the waiting list for the CC hangers on the far side of the field. They have electricity and powered doors!
Photo courtesy of CAP.