Sunday, August 28, 2011

Short Day to Idaho

We had a short 2.6 hr day into Nampa (near Boise) to see Jake's Grandpa Frosty, his girlfriend Shirley and Uncle Erik.

Jake was glad they had an affectionate cat...

We had an uneventful trip, passing just west of McCall, but there were about half a dozen forest fires in southern MT which gave us a slight visibility problem for a half hour or so. None were TFR'd when we left Missoula so I was hoping nothing had popped up while we were en route.
Unfortunately, the tailwheel self-destructed on landing in Nampa. I had a replacement over nighted, but the bolts were the wrong size. I tried to find somewhere to buy them, but all I could come up with on Friday night was a Boise jet center that had a 150 dollar callout fee to open the parts counter and see if they had them. I was resigned to at least another day to find parts.
Shirley said she knew a cropduster we could ask and I figured we were wasting our time calling some guy with a Pawnee or something but didn't have anything to lose so went along with it. He turned out to have a fleet of planes, a private strip, hold turbine STCs, rebuild turbine engines, have a parts supply the size of a small store (including what I needed) and to be a very cool guy. It was great talking to him and looking at the planes.

I wanted to visit the Nampa based Helicycle factory where they fab single seat Solar turbine powered helicopter kits that I'd seen at the Copperstate EAA fly-in last year, but they didn't return my call. It turns out Erik fabbed parts for them while living in Winnemucca a few years ago - more small world evidence. Anyway... on to CA tomorrow we hope.


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