LSA Ercoupe For Sale – SOLD

by Bill ~ July 30th, 2013

A recent change in lifestyle has just convinced me to put my ‘Coupe on the market. The airplane is a 1946 415-C Ercoupe, is Light Sport eligible and has the 1320# Gross Weight STC installed. The Weight & Balance Sheet lists current weight at 886.1 lbs, leaving a useful load of 433.9 lbs. There are several photos here at www.TakeoffsAreOptional.com. (Note: this was originally posted in April, 2013 but updated on 07/30/13. I didn’t “officially” put it on the market until it had a new annual. The July Annual was completed with the two latest ADs performed and the landing gear rebuilt – including new tires and “donuts” at a total cost of $3186)

- Ercoupe Photos from 4/21/2013: Ercoupe For Sale – CLICK
- Wing Recovering Pictures from 5/2011: Ercoupe Wings – CLICK

Price: $xx,xxx. SOLD

Note: The photos include exterior, interior, engine, panel, prop (overhauled in 2009) and the “Bruce” Covers (cockpit/cowling is in OK shape, wing covers are brand new/unused).

Ercoupe Nose Cowling

415-C, Serial number 2992, first flight on August 16, 1946 (log books are complete back to the initial test flight). Total time airframe: 2865. Engine time SMOH: 860. Compressions of 74, 72, 78 76 at last annual.

The engine is a 75 HP Continental (C-75-12). Some folks search for a ‘Coupe with an 85. I won’t go into all the differences but will suggest you do some research about what those differences may be. From my basic understanding, the 85 uses the same block as the 75, has a larger carburetor jet and is “allowed” to turn faster. It must use a shorter, slightly less efficient propeller. End result should be a slightly better climb, slightly better cruise and a slightly higher fuel burn. (Fred Weick, designer of the original Ercoupe was said to have been a “propeller genius.” He later went on to work for William Piper and helped design the original Piper Cherokee.)

Wings were recovered in May of 2011 (by a true old-time professional) and have never been outdoors other than while flying and since I moved it to Harford County, MD (0W3) for Annual. Both aileron control horns were replaced with new ones from Univair while the wings were off for recovering. (One horn was cracked – there is a known problem with these going bad so I had them both replaced.) May annual, which this year took until July to finish (waiting on parts for the latest AD). Upgrades include 1320# STC, Tanis heater (which is wonderful for winter flying in the mid-Atlantic), Cleveland brakes, spin-on oil filter, auto gas STC (I have never used auto gas). Nice paint – new on wings (of course) and nose bowl, which is also new. Airtex interior (about 10 years old).

Ercoupe departing from Runway 19 at 0W3, Harford Count Airport

Asking price = $ SOLD

 

Contact Bill [at] Orioles [dot] org or via “comment” on this posting.

Ercoupe 415-C - Light Sport - For Sale

 

Ercoupe Owners Club members meet for lunch

by Bill ~ November 29th, 2012

Crabcake at Kay's Restaurant at the Cambridge AirportWell, at least three members of the Ercoupe Owners Club had a lunch fly-in at Kay’s Restaurant at the Cambridge, Maryland Airport (CGE). Sooo…why the picture of the crabcake (with fries and slaw) in an airplane post? One of the reasons for gatherings such as this is to share lunch along with the “Ercoupe camaraderie” coalesced by owing a unique antique aircraft.

There is [very] little activity in the local district of the Ercoupe Owners Club so a few of us are determined to use our aircraft to meet up with other like-minded pilots. It is, indeed, interesting and FUN to see differing examples of one of the most advanced general aviation airplanes ever developed (Disclaimer: for it’s time period, 1938-1946, anyway).

The day was sunny and cool, as forecast, but the winds were about double the forecast – 10G16 -  and [of course] not right down the runway. But our little planes handled the crosswind with aplomb – as they were designed to do. :)

Three Ercoupes at CGE Cambridge Airport

One Ercoupe can attract attention on an airport ramp. This day, with three Ercoupes all parked together, was no exception. Nearly every other pilot (and passenger) had to stop by to take a look. Of course, we are always happy to talk about and “show off” our airplanes – but we also had to eat – and, unfortunately, couldn’t talk with everyone.

It was a pleasure to meet John and Kelly who are from the Easton, MD area and Mac who is from Lewes, Delaware (but keeps his plane at Potomac Airport near DC).

Kelly Mac John

Kelly, Mac and John (l to r)

John Kelly Ercoupe

John’s and Kelly’s Ercoupe

Mac Ercpouipe at Cambridge

Mac’s ‘Coupe on the Ramp at Cambridge Airport

After lunch and good conversation we did a bit of sightseeing. We flew (in trail, not formation) along the Choptank River from Cambridge upstream to Denton, MD. At that point we each headed for the hangar at our respective airports. It was a great day to fly despite the bumps and the haze. But what really made the day was meeting new people and developing friendships with other folks having the same interest in flying an Ercoupe as do I.

Flight Review for learning in a fun flying sort of way

by Bill ~ October 13th, 2012

Last Thursday I learned more about flying my own airplane – during my Biennial Flight Review (BFR). While a Flight Review (shorter, current terminology) is NOT a test with a pass/fail result, the Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) needs to feel confident of the pilot’s competency before endorsing that pilot’s (in this case, my) log book. The FR endorsement enables a pilot to continue flying for two more years.

I scheduled my flight review with an instructor from the airport where I used to base my Ercoupe. I was confident of his capabilities because I had some instruction from him in the past (and he and I both had former careers in public education). He also wanted to learn how to fly an Ercoupe.

I had to fly 110 miles (in a strong headwind) to get to Harford County Airport (0W3) and landed on their (relatively) short 2000′ runway in a strong, gusty crosswind. Unknown to me, the CFI was standing near the runway waiting for one of his students to return after a short XC flight. As I was parking on the ramp he drove up and complimented my landing (which I, fortunately, greased) by saying that it was a great landing and “I should sign your logbook right now.” Kidding, of course – but that did indicate a good start to my Flight Review experience.

We went inside the FBO to the training room and he got me started on the “ground work” while he finished up with his student. (The “ground” portion of the flight review will be another tale.)

So, on with the “air” portion of the review. The ground portion took a bit over an hour and the winds were calming a little – down to 12G17. But it was still a direct crosswind so I suggested we head 25 miles east to Summit Airport (EVY) for the landings because the runway there is twice as long as at Harford County. I felt at ease staying at 0W3 but I knew he wanted to try a couple of landings. We agreed we could cover the air maneuvers on the way to Summit.

Ercoupe and CFI at Harford County Airport 0W3

The CFI called for his own WX briefing as we get ready for the air portion of my Flight Review.

On the way to Summit we climbed to 2500′ for some stalls (or lack thereof – because it’s an Ercoupe). I demoed a couple of stalls – then gave the plane to the CFI. He was surprised at the lack of a real “break” and the ability to control the plane with full back yoke and no power – just a 1200 fpm downward “mush.” The ease of recovery, by just releasing back pressure and pointing the nose down a bit put us in a respecable glide. After the series of stalls he was surprised that we only used/lost 500 feet of altitude. I remember telling him, “Only in an Ercoupe.” :)

Landings were also fun. He had observed my “arrival,” the flying of a rectangular pattern and a “greaser” landing in a gusty crosswind situation. That covered my “ground reference and crosswind landings” – so I asked if he was ready to shoot a couple landings. Silly question – he loves to fly – and he loves small planes, especially the FBO’s Citabria – and here was a chance to fly a plane WITHOUT RUDDER PEDALS and LAND IN A CROSSWIND. All I needed to do was “coach” the technique. Fortunately, he trusted me when I told him about touching down in a “crab” – and his first landing was excellent. (But I did see his feet “dancing” just a bit – heh.)

I then demonstrated some Ercoupe idiosyncrasies that allow it to land in a variety of conditions. I culminated with a high approach and s-turning to lose altitude (no flaps and unable to slip) – hit the runway – did a T&G – and headed back to 0W3. The CFI already saw me land on 28 in a crosswind so I had him do the same – with just a bit of coaching.

We flew for only a little over an hour and did nearly all the manuevers in a Private Pilot PTS without having to repeat any. We did NOT cover navigation because the CFI knew I was VERY familiar with the area and had already flown 110 miles to “get here.” I had shown him my DUATS briefing (I’m a DUATS junkie and always take a screen shot of the first screen as a CYA measure.)

So…how did I actually “learn” during this Flight Review when all I had to do was demonstrate proficiency with my aircraft? I had to think through and explain, aloud, many of the maneuvers to the CFI when he was on the controls. Things like steep turns and turns about a point (gorund reference) are straighforward – but stalls, the landing process and takeoffs are all a bit “different.” I had to translate my muscle-memory habits into descriptive language and, thereforre, had to self-analyze what I actually “do” to fly the plane. I figure that taught me a bit more about my own aircraft than what I would otherwise gain from just demonstrating maneuvers.

It was a good flight, a successful Flight Review, we both learned and it was fun.