Here are old news items archived from The Mite Site News page....
Warning: the links on this page may be broken.
|January 2008 - December 2013|
Once the owner of N4105, Bill made his hangar the headquarters for WAMM Fly-Ins at Porterville, CA for many years. In recent years, with his health deteriorating rapidly, Bill was confined to his residences in Camarillo and Thousand Oaks, CA.
Although unable to show up at Fly-Ins since 2010, Bill maintained a keen interest in WAMM and all things related to Mooney Mites. He will be remembered by all his friends in WAMM.
New: See the obituary here.
Here's something you won't see much of on the Mite Site: poetry. Jim Bethel of Kerrville, TX expresses his fond memories of a Mite he once owned in a poem called Endless Dreams.2013-11-24
Are you in the habit of visiting MiteTalk? If not, please have a look. There are a couple of recent requests for information. You might be able to help. 2013-11-09
We're pleased to welcome Mike Gossett of Coeur d' Alene, Idaho to the Mooney Mite community.
Mike recently purchased N4181 from Michael Harms of Porterville, CA and flew it home from California.
N4181, an M-18C-55 model, has spent virtually its whole life in the western states of Oregon and California. Included in the list of previous owners are Phil Carrol, Whit Pearson, and Glenn Bell.
Dave Mazzola sent us this photo of 380 Alfa in its sailplane hangar at the private dirt strip at Skylark Airport in Lake Elsinore, California. The Mite is conveniently close to his home.
[click on photo to enlarge]
Dave and N380A put in an appearance at the WAMM fly-in at Lompoc, CA this past weekend.
It's WAMM Time! This is a reminder that the WAMM Fly-In will take place at KLPC in Lompoc, CA in ten days (October 11-13). We hope you can make it. If you haven't already done so, please e-mail a heads-up to host Ed Mandibles or us here at the Mooney Mite Site.
WAMM President, Ed Mandibles, has provided a schedule for the October Fly-in. It can be viewed via the WAMM Page, or by clicking here.
We're very pleased to have received a personal recollection about the very first Mooney Mite, N3199K, from Frank Badalson of Richmond, Virginia. Included with his story is a rare color photo of Mooney Mite Number 1.
As you know, Concrete, WA is home to 3½ Mites. That, plus the really nice little fly-in every year (the North Cascades Vintage Fly-In) is enough to draw a small gathering of WAMM members. Tom Clinton, David Favrholdt, Gil Gilbert, and yours truly enjoyed spending a few hours together on a fine day. We were very impressed when Tom showed us the comprehensive document package that Mike Magnani had put together for the new owner of N201MM (Tom). Photos
More on WAMM Newsletters: Thanks to Gil Gilbert, N4121, we have doubled the size of our historic collection so you can now read almost sixty issues of Tony Terrigno's "Switch-On" newsletters. Tony created and mailed out about three newsletters a year for the 23 years he was the president of WAMM. It was an amazing amount of work and best exemplifies his motto, "Remember - Keep the Mites Flying."
This is what Tony had to say in a recent email: "I've reached 90 and one-half and still flying a Cessna 150! Thelma and I are stilling living one day at a time with some health issues that are acceptable! Say hello to everyone for me!"
If you have looked at our WAMM Page lately, you will see that there are now links to old WAMM newsletters from the years when Tony Terrigno was president and publisher. Obviously, we are missing a rather large number of issues. If you happen to have some old WAMM newsletters kicking around in a box somewhere, please check them to see if you have any of the missing issues. If you could loan them to the Mite Site for scanning, it would be much appreciated.
We are pleased to welcome a new member of the Mite Community. Tom Clinton of Bellevue, WA recently purchased N201MM from Michael Harms. Tom actually owned this airplane and attended WAMM fly-ins back in the early 80s.
The Mite was ferried up to its new home at Arlington, WA this past weekend by Glenn Bell (in the photo). The 1000-mile flight took a total of 8 hours, with an overnight break at Cottage Grove, OR. Glenn reports that the weather was perfect, and the flight was uneventful.
That's Suann removing his shirttail. Dan tells us that he still has his original shirt tail and the wooden prop that was on the plane when he soloed.
This 1946 PA-12 has been his family since 1950. See more photos on his website.
Thanks to Dan Shumaker, N4142, the service manual for Univair Flōttorp Series R002 - R003 Controllable Pitch Propellers in PDF format is now available for purchase on our Manuals Page.
We welcome the new owner of N120C, Jim Hager, to the Mooney Mite Community. N120C has moved from KPTV and now lives between KOAK and KVCB, in Northern California. Jim has plans to upgrade the brakes, and also is looking for someone with first hand experience with Dynon Avionics or other non-certified packages. Please contact Jim if you can help.
Beech Roby propellers: If anyone out there has one of these on his Mite, or has experience in servicing one, please contact us. Thanks.
We have received a request for help from Dwayne Axford, N344M in Wheatland, WY. He's trying to find someone in his area familiar with Mites and able to do an annual inspection. If anyone out there can make a suggestion, we'd like to hear from you.
Firstly, big news for WAMM members: Ed Mandibles has reached a mutual agreement with Michael Harms to "take over the controls" of The Association.
Secondly, we've have word from the City of Porterville that the Porterville Air Faire has been canceled due to lack of funds. This eliminates the biggest attraction for the WAMM spring Fly-In at PTV.
Thirdly, as those of us who attended WAMM Lompoc last Fall are aware, the facilities at Lompoc are excellent for our purposes. Therefore, it has been decided that Lompoc, CA (LPC) will become the new venue of an annual WAMM Fly-In.
So, be advised that the next WAMM Fly-In will be held at Lompoc on the weekend of October 11 - 13, 2013, with Ed Mandibles and friends as the hosts.
We'd like to hear your comments on this topic, and we'll be looking for you at Lompoc in October.
Jolie Lucas of Mooney Ambassadors has provided a list of events of interest to Mooney owners for the coming 2013 season. The first of several events will be the Kerrville, Texas Airport Day, as mentioned below (2013-01-15), while the second will be the annual Oceano Airport Celebration on May 10-11. Here are the details.
Note that there is no word yet if there will be a Porterville Air Faire this June at which time the WAMM spring Fly-In would also be held.
We have more lists for you to study. Janic Geelen of New Zealand has provided us with the list of M-18 owners from an FAA Registry of 1965. It includes information about several Mites not previously provided in the Mite Site. Our thanks to Janic for transcribing the list.
As well, if you look on our Articles/History page you will see the results of a survey of Mite owners conducted by Fred Quarles in 1968. At that time, Fred was the editor of the MMOA Bulletin.
Old-timers will be interested in this item: the MMOA (Mooney Mite Owners Association) membership list for 1965.
With regret, we report that Frank Ogden, the renowned futurist known as Dr. Tomorrow, has died in Vancouver, BC. Among many other achievements, Frank is famous for establishing a Canadian altitude record in a Mooney Mite.
What Texas city was home to Mooney Mites? If you know the answer, take a look at this item sent to us by Fred Ramin, NC366A.
In case you haven't looked lately, the Mite Site Guestbook is now working again. It would be nice to see some new postings, as it's been a while. Note that there is still a link to our old, original guestbook in the menu list on the left of this page.
Owner Bruce Brown has informed us that the restoration of N119C is complete and that he flew it to Oshkosh last July.
There is a nice photo of the Mite in the November issue of Vintage Airplane Magazine. Also, look for an article by Budd Davisson in the Spring.
We welcome Ron Olson of Saskatoon, SK to the Mite community. It was Ron who purchased N4147, serial number 313, from Robert Schroeder, as mentioned below. Ron writes, "I have been flying all my adult life and grew up around airplanes. My greatest love of an airplane has been the Mooney. I have owned six Mooneys over the years and presently own a 201 and a Ranger M-20C. I also own a Cherokee Six 300 and a Cessna 180 on floats and skis, but I have always wanted to own a Mite since I flew one about 20 years ago."
Read our report on the Mite's arrival in Saskatchewan.
Dr. Robert Schroeder has been flying Mites since the early 80's. His first Mite experience was as a member of the Mity Air Force, an ANE-based group of ten who bought shares in N4101 for $200 each. In 1997, he acquired N118C and in 2007, N4147. This fall Robert reluctantly sold his Mites and is reduced to flying a Nanchang CJ-6A. He has submitted this letter describing the end of a certain love affair.
We need your help. At the Mite Site, we are looking into the possibility of having replica Mite cowling emblems made for the benefit of those owners whose emblems are missing. If you still have an emblem, you can help by sending us the measurements. Or, if you could loan us an original soft-metal emblem, that would be even better. Please let us know.
The report for the recent WAMM Fly-In at Lompoc, California is now ready for viewing. The Fly-in, or should we say Air Show, was a great success, thanks to Ed Mandibles and his crew of friends. The McCarley - Plo hangar at LPC was an ideal location.
We're looking forward to attending another WAMM event there next year.
Another Mite has come back from limbo. Serial number 300, registered to Dr. Bernie Malhomme of Kenmare, ND, since 1965, has been "found" and purchased by Joel Johnston, N4124. Originally identified as N4136, it was exported to Canada in 1961, taking on the Canadian ident CF-NNI. It ended up in Malhomme's possession in Saskatchewan in 1965, and went into storage in 1969. It lost its C. of A. in 1974, then became a project and was moved to North Dakota by Malhomme some time after that.
Through lucky accident, Joel found the Mite in a hangar in Mandan, ND while on his cross-country flight last August (reported earlier). Joel and friends are trucking the Mite back to Spokane as I write this. Thanks to Joel, we have received some photos already.
For those of you planning to attend the October WAMM Fly-In at Lompoc, CA, the suggested schedule of events is now ready.
Joel Johnston, N4124, has successfully completed his return flight from Washington to Michigan (as mentioned in our item of 2012-07-29). The eastbound flight began on August 1st, and the return flight ended on August 13th. It took him two full days of flying each way. The distance each way was over 1400NM. We are pleased to have received a large set of photos that Joel took along the way, as well as his commentary. Thanks for a report well done, Joel!
We'd also like to point out that, by Joel's calculation, N4124 burned 3.7 GPH, and averaged 25 MPG!
This is just one reason why it was such a pleasure to visit the North Cascades Vintage Fly-In sponsored by Jim Jenkins and the Skagit Aero Education Museum in Concrete, Washington this past weekend.
Joel Johnston, N4124, of Mead, Washington reports that he recently flew formation with his brother-in-law, David Cabbage (N335M, Colville, WA), to a pancake breakfast in Prosser, WA. Have a look.
Joel says that he is planning to leave Deer Park in N4124 later this week for a vacation at his old family home in Michigan. He figures on two 8-hour days of flying with an overnight in Wahpeton, North Dakota. If it works out, he will be submitting aerial photos from the flight. We're really looking forward to it.
We're not sure if he's with us anymore, but here's a long overdue nod to Bill Shea of Woodland, CA. Bill once owned N481M which he donated to Sacramento City College in early 2001 in the name of his daughter Karen who was a student there years ago. We met Bill in May 2000 in Porterville, CA. Not long afterwards, in 2002, he sent us this memento from one of his notable long-distance flights.
Update: We've just received an email from Bill. He's alive and well, and presently attending the Farnborough International Airshow in England. Here's an unsolicited link to the memoir that Bill wrote about his career in aviation administration.
Jim Wilkins of Prescott, Arizona is starting some very preliminary plans for a fly-in to Prescott later this year for the Vintage Mooney Group. The event would be held about mid-September when cooler weather has arrived. He would love to have a couple Mites attend and is therefore willing to plan the date around them. In addition, he would pull his big Mooney out of the hanger to make room for two or more Mites if they want to stay overnight.
If you are interested in flying your Mite to attend, here are Jim's contact details:
WAMM update - please note that a new date for the next Fly-In has been selected: the weekend of October 12 - 14, 2012 in Lompoc, CA. More details will be added to the WAMM Page as they become available.
The report for the June 2012 WAMM Fly-In is now published. Make a note that the next Fly-In will be held at Lompoc, California in the Fall.
The next WAMM Fly-in will be held in Porterville, California, on the weekend of June 8 - 10. It will coincide with the Air Faire which takes place on Saturday, June 9. See the WAMM Page for further details.
We recently learned, thanks to Keith Mackey, N4159, that N3159K has been won at auction (see the news item below). And happily, we've since been contacted by new owner, Don Maxwell of Longview, Texas. Welcome back to the Mite Community, Don! (Don once owned N485M, Serial Number 239 for several years).
Incidentally, N3159K may very well be aboard a trailer on its way from Florida to Texas this week as you read this.
Update: The plane made it "home" successfully. Here are some photos.
We're passing along a call for assistance from owner Brian Zabriskie of Moscow, Idaho:
Note: Brian has begun a thread (discussion) in the MiteTalk Main Forum on this topic. He's looking forward to seeing members' responses there. Members can also respond privately by clicking on his name in the forum. Please Contact the Mite Site Site if you are not a member and wish to respond.
AvBid Aircraft Auctions in Lakeland, Florida, a partner of Sun n' Fun Florida Air Museum, has listed the Museum's M-18L (N3159K, serial number 3) which they received by donation from Charlie Lasher in 1989. It is an absolute sale, in other words no minimum bid. You can see photos and contact details here. Thanks to Robert Schroeder, N4147, N118C, for bringing this to our attention.
A rare Crosley car was spotted in Spokane by Joel Johnston, N4124. Luckily he had a camera handy and send the results to the Mite Site. As you probably know, it was the Crosley engine that powered the very first Mites.
Clarence Beintema of Kitchener, Ontario has sent us another set of photos showing the progress he is making in the rebuild of his Mite, C-GMYT (used to be N4131). These ones illustrate the results of the powder coating and painting procedure.
We regret to report that two WAMM members have recently passed away. Tim Lucero died about a month and a half ago, soon after a fall which had broken his hip. A long time resident Lompoc, California, Tim had been living most recently with his daughter in New Mexico. Tim is fondly remembered for his wit and eccentricity. Denver Jacobson of Ryley, Alberta, Canada died on November 22nd.
As Mite enthusiasts, we can think of no finer tribute to these fellows than that the Mites they once owned are still alive and well. Denver's CGXTR, the M-18X that he so lovingly built, will continue to serve its owner Kevin Harberg of Camrose, Alberta. And Tim's Mite, N325M, it is flying regularly and giving great pleasure to Ed Mandibles of Lompoc.
Friends of Oceano Airport co-founders, Mitch Latting and Jolie Lucas extend this invitation:
Here's our report on the recent WAMM Fly-In at Porterville, CA.
As for finding "disappeared" Mites, it's been a very good year. We have just learned of a third one. Brad Poling of Elk Grove, CA. emailed to say that N382A was recently flown up to Sacramento Executive, where it is now being dismantled for a complete rebuild. Brad tells us that this Mite has spent virtually all of the last 35 years in the Sacramento Valley. But it was tucked away on a farm until fairly recently, so it's not surprising that no one had reported seeing it.
I'd like to point out again - it's the Mite Site's mission to bring all existing M-18s, whole or in pieces, back into "the light of day." Come on guys, there's gotta be more out there. Check the owners page, then send us a heads-up (and a photo)!
Congratulations to Forrest Lovely of Jordan, Minnesota, who now has legitimate bragging rights. His Mite, N4068, captured awards in two categories at the recent 40th Anniversary Fly-In at the Antique Airfield in Blakesburg, Iowa. He took the Neo-Classic 1946-1955 in the Grand Champion Awards category, as well as the Nebraska Chapter Choice Award. If anyone out there took photos of the Mite, please sent them to us.
We hope someone can fulfill this request from Dan Metz:
Due to the later-than-usual date of the last WAMM Fly-In (June), it has been suggested that the next one also be held a bit later -- early October. So, unless we receive strenuous objections before August 12th, we will go ahead and make plans for the weekend of October 7 - 9, 2011. We encourage those of you who do plan to attend, or wish to suggest another date, to let us know as soon as you can.
We've managed to get our hands on the photos and the Form 337 from an installation of a BPE-14 Turbo Alternator by Richard Reibel in his 1951 M-18C, N4050. Special thanks to Joel Johnston for helping to make this possible.
At one time, Joel Johnston's M-18, N4124, had a Ward Aero air-driven generator mounted on it. For historical interest, since the technology has advanced a great deal since then, Joel has sent us a photo of the device along with a drawing of the mounting bracket.
You may have noticed that N4147 and N118C, shown for several months on our Buy & Sell page, have been removed. Owner Dr. Robert Schroeder had listed them though an agency that has gone belly-up. Perhaps with a sense of relief that the Mites didn't sell, Robert recently took both of them up for a spin (so to speak). After flying each for more than an hour, he's now having second thoughts about selling both. It's no wonder, considering their illustrious histories. Here is some news and a couple of photos.
Last Friday we received some nice photos of N4068 from Forrest Lovley of Jordan, Minnesota. This Mite was once owned by our old friend, Fred Schmidt. You will see that it has undergone a major facelift.
The June 2011 WAMM Fly-In report is now ready for viewing here.
We though we had collected every article ever published about the Mite, but Kevin Harberg, C-GXTR has found a "new" one for us to look at from Flying magazine, March 1950. Here it is.
We've heard from a new Mite owner. Rogers Hughes of Corpus Christie has bought N4051 from David Hutton of Abilene, Texas. David will be flying the Mite down to Corpus Christie next week. Roger says:
Thanks for the complements, Rog, and welcome to our Mite Community!
Good news received May 11th:
Looking through our archives yesterday, we discovered an unpublished flight experience which Dan McKinnon had submitted to Tony Terrigno years ago. We're not sure if it made it into Tony's newsletter, but one thing's led to another and you can now see it here, as well as via our Articles/Flight Experiences page. Thanks to Ted Hazlewood of Southern California Aircraft Repair for helping us to locate Dan, as well as sending us photos of his handiwork on Dan's N485M.
For those who are planning to attend the WAMM Fly-In next month, here is an update in the Porterville newspaper about the Porterville Air Faire which will be taking place at PTV on the same weekend, June 10 - 12.
Email received from Kevin Harberg, C-GXTR:
We've had good news lately - two more "disappeared" Mites are going to be brought back to life. Brian Zabriskie of Idaho will be getting down to work on N477M, a well preserved basket case he purchased from Glenn Bell about ten years ago. And we're especially pleased to learn that N4150, a Mite that apparently vanished after the passing of its owner, Ted Stewart of New Hampshire in 2006, is not only back on our radar, but also will be restored by John Lavoie of Massachusetts.
A Rare Opportunity: We've learned that Red Engle, the fellow who sent the photo of N11N (see news item below) has approached aviation from several angles. He was a paratrooper in the Korean War, but more recently has flown model airplanes as a member of the Academy of Model Aeronautics. As an artist and art teacher, he enjoys painting pictures of airplanes and has kindly sent us a rendering of N325M. (This Mite has special meaning to me because it was the first one I flew).
For the fun of it, Red has offered to produce "paintings on demand" for owners who would like a painting of their airplane as a gift, keepsake or whatever. Red works from photos and will require several pictures of the airplane. The painting will be rendered in durable acrylic paint, normally on a 11" x 14" canvas board for ease of shipping. Red will e-mail you views of the work in progress, so changes can be made before it is finished. He does not want any payment until the painting is received and is satisfactory. Prices are very modest, negotiable, and include the cost of shipping. If you would like Red to do a painting of your airplane, please click here to e-mail him.
In regard to the Mystery Mite featured on the Front Page this month, close examination of the slide sent to us by Red Engle seems to indicate that the tail number could be N11N.
How good are your eyes? This n-number does not show up in our records. Hopefully, the FAA will be able to help out. A request for information has been submitted to them.
Update (2011-03-08): The FAA is unable to help, as we can't provide them with a serial number and their n-number records only go back to 1969.
With the flying season fast approaching, here are notices of two events at Oceano Airport on the California coast: Fly-In Movie Night on April 30th and Celebration Day, May 14th. We've been told Mooney Mites are especially welcome.
Minter Field Air Museum (At Shafter, just south of Porterville, CA) is hosting their annual Fly-In Pancake Breakfast on May 14, 2011. This year it's a salute to all Veterans of WW ll, Korea & Vietnam. All Flying Machines are invited. See their website for updates on special Airplane Exhibits and special Guest Speakers. The Airport is open all day. The Breakfast starts at 0800. To reserve a parking spot, call 661-654-9159 or e-mail.
Aircraft marking: Here is an item that may be of interest to those owners who are now, or will be, repainting their aircraft.
We've already published an article about FAA registration marking requirements for aircraft over 30 years old, based on information provided by Mike Magnani, N4094.
Here are a couple of suggestions for the design or appearance of these registration marks, otherwise known as n-numbers or tail numbers.
Are you a new Mooney Mite owner looking for an opportunity to share the good feeling with like-minded folks? Do you need some maintenance tips from M-18 enthusiasts? Are you sick and tired of the cold, grey skies of winter and dreaming of some place dry and warm like Southern California? Or are you simply looking forward to seeing your old flying buddies again? Do it all! Plan to join us under the blue skies of Porterville California this Spring. Make a note now: WAMM PTV June 10-12.
Remember that the WAMM Fly-In will coincide with a larger gathering that weekend, the Porterville Air Faire, the 2011 edition of which will be themed, “Wings, Wheels and Speed.” Note that the Mooney Ambassadors will also be there.
See our poster here: please print and distribute. (Spectacular photo courtesy of Ed Mandibles).
Membership Services Rep. at the EAA, Kelly Meyer, has just let us know that Mal Gross's book "Nine Lives – Adventures of a Lucky Pilot" is now available as an e-book, in several formats,on the EAA website.
Magnani Michael, N4094 submitted a report on his experience with repairing his Mite Vacuum Wiper Motor. This device, of course, is what drives the classic Mite "wig-wag" gear warning indicator. The report was so nicely done that we think it will be a good example for others.
We've heard again from Clarence Beintema, C-GMYT (ex-N4131). He finished his RV4 in December, right on schedule, so last month he brought his Mite out of storage and started its restoration. He's sent us some before-and-after photos of his trip a year ago, from Texas to Breslau, Ontario (just outside of Kitchener) with the Mite packed in a glider trailer. It's great to see another Mite in good hands and being brought back to life.
Here's an interesting item for you, sent in by Larry Minch, N4087. It's a link to a movie on YouTube dating from the 1950's.
It includes footage showing an unidentified Mite sporting logos from the Confederate Air Force. It was taken at Baker Air Park, Burlington WV, in the summer 1956.
Here are some screen shots taken from the movie which may help to identify it.
If anyone can provide us with the n-number of this airplane, we'd sure like to hear from you.
Oshkosh Ambassador, George Ramin, N4160, is making his annual call to join the "Texas Group" at Oshkosk 2011. This year's event runs from July 23 to August 1. Dorm room deposits are required by February 11. Details here.
January Appeal for Donations: Are you a regular visitor here? Have you found this Site useful? How about showing your appreciation by clicking on the Donate link [in the menu on the left] and supporting the Mite Site?
Thanks to Glenn Bell, ex Mite owner and current glider pilot, here are some links to information about fixing the notoriously weak brakes on the Mite. (Note that there is also a link to this information via the Maintenance Tips page).
In case you haven't re-checked Jeff Warren's photos we posted a month ago, this is to let you know that more of them have been added.
If you've been following discussions in MiteTalk, you'll know that Mike Magnani is in the middle of a total restoration of N4094.
For as long as Mike's been a member of WAMM, he's been driving his Jetta up to Porterville, CA for the Fly-Ins. And for the past year, he's been flying borrowed Mites while there. But now he can fly one whenever he wants because Michael Harms has loaned him N201MM.
Mike's flown the Mite from Porterville down to Camarillo, California, where he's able to keep it at his workplace, Harbor Freight's hangar.
The Mite has to share space with a Gulfstream 550, but it doesn't seem to be causing problems. Here are some photos that make the point.
So Mike is apparently busier than ever, tuning up one Mite while he rebuilds another.
It is with sorrow that we note the death of our good friend Mal Gross last weekend (December 5th). Mal was a member of WAMM, and one-time owner of Mite N4187 as well as several other airplanes during his 50 years as a private pilot. Mal financed the restoration of N4187 for which he won the Lindy trophy at Oskosh in 2003, the year that the Mooney Airplane Company celebrated its 50th year in Kerrville, Texas. Not only did we enjoy his friendship, we benefited from his strong support of the Mite Site. He generously provided copies of his book, Nine Lives: Adventures of a Lucky Pilot, as a means of encouraging donations. Mal was a board member of the EAA and worked, unsuccessfully as it turned out, on behalf of the entire Mite community during the period when the FAA was setting the parameters of the Light Sport Aircraft category. For more more information about his life and career, read Mal's obituary in the Washington Post.
Before Mal passed, he made arrangements that will allow EAA to make Nine Lives available free to members and Young Eagles in a digital format. That digital edition will serve as Mal’s lasting legacy, and is expected to be available in early 2011. Hard copies are also available through EAA’s online store here.
I feel bad for not mentioning this item last winter. There's another Mite in Canada! In February, Clarence Beintema picked up N4131 in Texas and took it home to Kitchener, Ontario. The Mite will be in storage for another year or so while Clarence and a buddy finish an RV4 as well as build a new hangar for the Mite. In the meantime, its Continental engine has been removed and taken to a local engine shop, Reliable Horse Power, for overhaul. Its Canadian mark will be C-GMYT. Welcome to the Mite Community, Clarence!
We've recently updated our software so we can once again access the FAA aircraft registration database. There are some changes of note: N368A is now owned by Albert Merschdorf of East Troy, Wisconsin. N396A is now owned by Salvador Sahagun of Bothell, Washington. N4150 is now owned by John Lavoie of East Templeton, Massachussets. Lastly, we note that a Mite project, N333M was purchased by Joe Burnett and trucked up to Parker, Colorado last July. We'd sure like to hear from all these fellows....
A simple email request by Jeff Warren of Simpsonville, South Carolina for information about N379A led to our discovery that Jeff has a large collection of photos, including many of Mooney Mites. We are fortunate to have received a sample,with possibly more to come. Incidentally, we would like to know the whereabouts of N379A as well. Can anyone help?
Owner Bruce Brown of Birmingham, Alabama reports that rumors of the demise of N119C have been greatly exaggerated. After suffering ahard landing in May, 2007, she's nearing completion of her restoration. Here's a photo of her first heartbeat in many months. Bruce says he'll see us in Porterville next summer. WAMM members will be very pleased to see this Mite again, as it was once owned by member Garry Gramman, now deceased.
WAMM members will be interested to learn that the date of the next Fly-In has been determined. We've just learned from Ben Favrholdt that Porterville Municipal Airport's next air show, to be called Porterville Air Faire, will take place on June 10-11, 2011. WAMM will be there. For more information, click on this link to the Recorderonline website.
We regret that Mite owner and aviation benefactor, Harold Hansen, passed away last month. He was a soft spoken and generous man who gave steadfast support to aviation at Concrete Airport in Washington State where he kept his marvelous collection of airplanes. He is the founder of the Skagit Aero Education Museum, which will continue in his absence under the supervision of his close friend, Jim Jenkins, A&E. A memorial service will be held at Concrete Airport at 2 P.M. on November 20th. For details about Harold's life, have a look at the Museum website.
The report on the recent WAMM Fly-In is now available for viewing in the long term via the WAMM Page, or by clicking here. Our thanks to David Favrholdt, Michael Harms and Ed Mandibles for providing words and photos for the Report in our absence.
The WAMM Fly-In, premier event for Mooney M-18 owners, will take place in only 7 days. If you're depressed about the end of the flying season and the onset of damp, cold, autumn weather, maybe you'd enjoy spending a couple of days in warm, sunny Porterville, CA, where summer continues. You'll be in the pleasant company of a small but dedicated group of Mite experts. It's a great opportunity to swap stories and learn about the world's Most Personal Airplane.
Jolie Lucas, spark plug of the Mooney Ambassadors, has passed along an invitation to a December charity event (Toys for Tots) which will take place at the Oceano airport on the coast north of Santa Barbara, CA. Perhaps you could print out the poster and post it in your local pilot's hangout.
We have acquired a CD from the FAA containing their documentation on N3199K, "Mooney Mite Number 1", including the Airworthiness and Registration certificates. So the "official" history of N3199K, in the form of a timeline, has been added to our article on this important airplane, now on display in the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum (NASM) annex at Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia, USA.
The WAMM October Fly-In date is fast approaching. As we always wish attract new members, the Mite Site once again makes available a poster to advertise the Fly-In. As you will see, it is designed to be easily printed and cut in two. We ask that those of you who hang out at airports or flying clubs, please download the Poster File and pin the posters up in suitable locations. Thanks for your help!
There will be one major change at the October Fly-In. Some of you may not know that Bill Vandersande has sold his hangar, which was the "home" of the Porterville Fly-In for many years. We understand that Don Deaton moved the fridge and chairs just across the way to Michael Harms's hangar, so aside from a twinge of sadness, the transition should be painless.
Fred Ramin, NC366A, has forwarded an invitation to attend the Texas Antique Airplane Association Fly-In at Gainesville in October. We have no confirmation that any Mites will be there, but here is their press release and website.
Some nice photos of Scott Lewis in his Mite, N4096, can be seen on the website Airport-Data.com
We've received a heads-up from Mike Magnani, N4094 about a ruling from the FAA affecting Mite owners. Briefly, the FAA is requiring re-registration of all civil aircraft over the next three years and renewal every three years after that. For more information, click on this link.
Received this today from WAMM stalwart, Gil Gilbert:
He last flew the Mite in August, 1995, after which it went into storage. The wing was mated to the fuselage in 2005.
Havasu Air Center would like to personally invite you and the Western Association of Mooney Mites to their annual “Fly-in at the Lake 2010”... This is a premier air show that will be held on Saturday, September 25th and 26th at the Lake Havasu City Airport (KHII). For more info, click here.
Here's a link to a Mooney Ambassadors video which accompanied this e-mailed report:
Coming to terms with his stroke-caused physical disability, Ray Allen of Camp Verde, AZ has realized that his plan to restore a fleet of four Mites is just not possible, so he is selling the works. See our Buy & Sell page for more details. 2010-06-26
A reminder -- our special offer, a copy of Mal Gross' book, NINE LIVES: Adventures of a Lucky Pilot in return for a donation to the Mite Site, expires at the end of this month. Your support is always appreciated. 2010-06-20
The Mooney Ambassadors (see our news item of 2010-02-08) recently paid a visit to Porterville's Eagle Mountain Air Show, giving the local Mite owners a chance to become Ambassadors by taking part. Michael Harms sent us some photos of the event. To see the latest copy of the Ambassador's newsletter, click here. 2010-06-19
The Report from the May 14-16, 2010 WAMM Fly-In is ready for viewing. More to come. 2010-05-19
We have acquired a copy of Ed Mandibles' cockpit checklist that he showed at the WAMM Fly-In. If you would like a copy for your own use, download it from the Maintenance page, then print, trim it, and have it laminated. If you would like to have a customized checklist, contact the Mite Site. 2010-05-18
The Dawn Patrol event at Porterville is getting totally out of control. The number of committed participants has jumped 25% since our last notice! To see the full group, go to the WAMM Fly-In schedule page. How about adding your name to the list? 2010-04-15
The Dawn Patrol at the WAMM Fly-in will now have at least THREE participants! Another Miter has asked to have his name put on the list - Ed Mandibles, N325M. Let's hear from more of you! 2010-04-01
We've just learned that the WAMM Fly-In has two airplanes confirmed for the Dawn Patrol on Saturday the 15th. Scott Lewis, N4096, and Michael Harms, N201MM. We hope more will join them. 2010-03-22
Reminder: (see News item dated 2010-02-09) Have you printed out and posted a copy of the WAMM Fly-In posteryet? 2010-03-16
Scott Lewis, N4096, was in Victorville, CA this afternoon where he had a chance to take these two photos of his Mite and the new Boeing 787. 2010-03-12
Where do you go when you get in your airplane? For many pilots, it's usually to a hamburger-and-coffee shop. Kevin Daugherty wants us to realize there's a lot more out there to be enjoyed. He has co-founded a website called OneTankFlights: Discover, Fly, and Share. The website offers free memberships for pilots, intending to help them find new and interesting reasons to get in their plane and fly somewhere. The ultimate goal is to improve the health of the general aviation system by increasing the utilization of our small airports, flight schools, and other FBO services like fuel sales. Currently, although the site concentrates on the Ohio area because that's home, it includes data from every other state. OneTankFlights.com is designed for adding content, and invites submissions by members to broaden the list of destinations in every region. 2010-03-12
Visitors to the WAMM Fly-In at Porterville, CA might be interested to learn that on Monday, April 17th a fly-in will be taking place just down the road from Porterville. Minter Field Air Museum in Shafter, CA will be "Celebrating 100 years of Kern County Aviation History" by hosting a Pancake Breakfast. Here is a copy of their poster. Further details can be seen on their website. Minter Field is 32NM SSW of PTV. 2010-03-08
We have received an e-mail from Jolie Lucas, who has formed a group called the Mooney Ambassadors. Their main purpose is to support the Mooney Airplane Company and promote General Aviation. Their simple concept is that Mooney Ambassadors would choose a fly-in day or airport day and arrange to display. They would equip themselves with suitable material such as prop tags, t-shirts, etc., and "Fly somewhere beautiful, display your Mooney, and talk with the flying and non-flying public all day about your airplane and GA. Can any other company have a 40-50 year old airplane right next to the world's fastest single-engine production piston?" Mite owners are invited to become Mooney Ambassadors. If you are interested, send them an e-mail. 2010-02-08
As the WAMM regulars know, the May Fly-In date is fast approaching. As we always wish attract new members, this time the Mite Site has made available a poster to advertise the Fly-In. As you will see, it is designed to be easily printed and cut in two. We ask that those of you who hang out at airports or flying clubs, and have a printer attached to your computer (this should include most of you), please download the Poster File and pin the posters up in suitable locations. Thanks for your help! 2010-02-09
We've been contacted by Jeff Miller, Chief Mooniac, Vintage Mooney Group-Northeast, who wishes to extend an invitation to all Mite owners to attend VMG events in their West, Northeast, or new South Central locations. You can visit the VMG website for more information, including up-coming events. 2010-01-30
Those of you who have been to the WAMM fly-ins know that Bill Vandersande, our generous hangar host, has had great difficulty walking in recent years, the result of blood circulation problems. Bill just sent us very disturbing news that he's had his left leg amputated above the knee. He seems to be taking this setback well. We extend to Bill our sympathy and hope that he will accept the offer of a ride to the next Fly-in, scheduled for May. 2009-12-25
We take pleasure in announcing that Mal Gross, one-time Mite owner, has completed his multi-year book writing project. NINE LIVES: Adventures of a Lucky Pilot is now available to the public.
The book contains details of Mal's experiences as a long-time aircraft owner, as well as intelligent observations about the risks of flight. For more, see Mal's website. I was personally involved in the preparation of the manuscript, and I can say with certainty that pilots and aviation enthusiasts will find the book totally absorbing.
We are also pleased that, through Mal's generosity, we are able to offer (for a limited time) copies of the book to donors to the Mite Site. 2009-12-15
Here's a news item that really turns our crank: Fred Quarles, owner of the M-18 type certificate and once producer of the M-18X kit, has found a woodworking shop that might be willing to manufacture brand new Mooney Mites. Fred has asked us to pose the following questions:
1. Is anyone interested?
It is too early for a price to be named. A substantial down payment would be necessary. The main point of this is to find out if there would be any buyers and what they would be willing to pay.
We would appreciate it if you would discuss this amongst your friends and acquaintances and send your comments to:
We have added to the Mite Site some wording from particular FAA regulations brought to our attention by Mike Magnani, N4096. They are the rules governing registration marking (N-numbers) on airplanes at least 30 years old, which, of course, includes Classic aircraft such as the Mite. Interested? Go to the link titled Forms, Specifications, Regulations: on our Maintenance page. Incidentally, this probably gives us an indication as to what stage Mike is approaching in his rebuild of N4096. 2009-10-30
The report for the recent WAMM Fly-In at Porterville, CA is now published. 2009-10-009
Early on, factory Mooney Mites won recognition for a number of reasons, including long distance performance, speed, and efficiency. However, since they have been out of production for over 50 years, restoration plays a key part in keeping the Mites flying. As no surprise, several have received awards for restoration workmanship. We have managed to collect a few photos documenting several of their wins. Thanks to the owners who sent us these great photos!
We have no doubt missed mentioning awards won by other Mite owners. If you are aware of any, and can provide photos, please send them to the Mite Site. Photos are essential. 2009-09-27
Stephen Taylor has sent us a request for details about a Mite apparently involved in the Eisenhower presidential campaign in the 1950's. Anyone -- please take a look at the photos and send us your thoughts and/or recollections. 2009-09-09
The Mooney Mite Fly-In Is Coming!! A message from WAMM president, Michael Harms. 2009-09-07
Concrete, Washington is the home of 3-1/2 Mites and the Skagit Aero Education Museum. Their Vintage Fly-In, hosted by Jim Jenkins and Harold Hanson was held the weekend of July 24th. It was a good, old-time airport day, the kind where aviation enthusiasts can walk anywhere, look at the airplanes inside and out, and talk to the pilots. We had the pleasure of attending for a few hours on the Saturday. 2009-08-08
Scott KcKie of Seattle, WA has sent us a couple of stories that he can recall about his dad's exploits in an M-18C, a.k.a. Wee Mac, back in the 1950s (see below). They are also linked to our Articles/Flight Experiences page. 2009-07-04
We've received a request from Scott McKie for help in locating a particular Mite. Unfortunately, it cannot be identified through a search of the Mite Site files (which are very sparse for the 1950's and 1960's), so we'll let you have a look at Scott's request in case someone out there can help:
Any help would be appreciated. Please contact the Mite Site or Scott at the above e-mail address. 2009-07-03
Re: Trophies - I am planning to put together an article on the various trophies that Mite owners have won over the years. I have been in touch with the winning owners that I know about, but there may be others to whom I have not sent a request for photos. If you have not heard from me, please e-mail me with details. Thanks. 2009-06-20
Contents of an e-mail from Scott Lewis, N4096:
Please note: a change has been made to the date of the next WAMM Fly-In which was announced in the report below. It is now scheduled for the weekend of October 2 - 4, 2009. 2009-05-30
The WAMM May 15 - 17 Fly-In report is now ready for viewing. Of special note are visits by new Mite owners, Ed Mandibles (N325M) of Lompoc, CA and Dave Rush (N4105) of Commack, NY. Welcome to the Mite Community, guys! 2009-05-20
We've been told that the Mooney Mite Site played a part in the development of a very good M-18C simulation for FSX, the Microsoft Flight Simulator program. Our thanks to developer Tim Conrad for making it available here for download, and to Joel Johnson, N4124, for bringing it to our attention. Note that FSX runs only in the MS Windows operating system. View sample images from the simulator here, on another site. Download the simulator zip file (9.5MB) direct from the Mite Site by clicking here. The installation instructions are found in readme.txt within the zip package. 2009-04-25
WAMM Fly-In, Porterville, CA, in three weeks! (May 15 - 17).
Notice of Event:
Here's an item of interest from Stephen Lowther, N397A, N4080, N372A (parts):
Like many other vBulletin boards, the MiteTalk forum has been deluged with phony applications for membership -- more than ten a day. The usernames are nonsensical and email addresses non-specific (such as "@gmail"), so I have to assume they are automated spamming computers trying to post inappropriate material (ads or pornography). The recent registration procedure had enabled me to intercept and block them, but it required daily attention. I have now changed the program settings so that new applications for membership must go direct to me by email. Previous members will continue to have full privileges. I notice that Mite Talk is receiving very few new postings from legitimate members. This leads me to question its value, in view of the fact that a license must be purchased every year. Your comments would be appreciated. 2009-03-24
We are pleased to add another first-hand story to our collection, that of John Jorgensen, who ferried N4105 to New York last December. [See Flight Experiences: "Coast to Coast in N4105" via the Articles Page]. Thanks for writing it, John, and thanks to new owner, Dave Rush, who gave him the opportunity. 2009-03-11
Over the past month, the Mite Site has been undergoing major renovations, mostly behind the scenes (where HTML code is involved). It was brought to our attention today that one of more of our web pages was not displaying properly in Internet Explorer. This was to be expected, considering the number of changes involved. These things can usually be fixed easily, as long as we find out about them. If you see something that doesn't look right, please let us know right away so we can avoid embarrassment. 2009-03-01
Rest assured, there WILL be a WAMM May 2009 Fly-In at Porterville. We have eight confirmations so far. 2009-03-01
Some of the WAMM members are starting preparations for attending the Fly-In in May. However, there is talk that current economic conditions are keeping many flyers grounded. It was suggested that it might be smart to cancel the May Fly-In and go for October only. I would like to hear a.s.a.p. from those of you who are still committed to coming to Porterville on May 15 - 17. 2009-02-24
Message forwarded by Fred Ramin, NC366A:
Our MiteTalk discussion forum is back online. There are links here and on the Front page. All user names and postings should be as they were last October when it was taken offline. Because it was such a popular feature of the Mite Site, we've put it back online even though we're still tweaking the security settings and page appearance. We hope you can remember your user name and password! If you can't, send us an email. 2009-01-27
Long-time Mite owner (like 30 years), Bill Vandersande of Camarillo, CA has informed us that, as of last Friday, N4105 was on its way to New York. Bill says the new owner Dave Rush of Commack, NY hired John Jorgensen to fly it back. Welcome to the Mite community, Dave! 2008-12-02
In February, 2007 we learned that Bruce Brown had purchased N119C from Garry Gramman's daughter, Kelly Oletta of El Cajon, CA. We also learned that he'd had a landing mishap in May, 2007. We imagined the worst, but Bruce has now sent in a report and some photos giving us the particulars. 2008-11-30
Due to technical difficulties, our discussion forum, MiteTalk, has been removed. Much to our regret, we received no support from our old hosting service (which is one of the reasons we moved to a new one), so the postings and membership list from MiteTalk were not transferred and are probably lost. In addition, the never-ending need to install upgrades and remove pornographic postings has caused us to think twice about installing a new version of the Forum software. Our apologies to those of you who made valuable contributions to MiteTalk in the past. We encourage you to keep in touch with us by e-mail, as this News Page can be a reasonable alternative. 2008-11-03
We've received word from John Pound of San Rafael, CA, who sold N4096 to Scott Lewis last spring, that he is happy to be back in the Mite community. John has purchased N101C, the Mite currently featured on our Front Page. The airplane will be ferried to the Bay Area by a ferry pilot friend, Paul Reinders, who owned a Mite about 30 years ago. 2008-10-22
NOTICE: We are presently taking steps to move the Mite Site to a new Internet hosting service. You may expect a temporary service interruption during the changeover, but we don't know exactly when. Sorry for the inconvenience! 2008-10-20
Due to a recent series of SPAM postings in MiteTalk, we have temporarily put a stop to all new registrations. This means that, until further notice, no new members can sign up and make a posting. If you are already registered with MiteTalk, you should be able to continue posting. If you can't, please let us know. In the meantime, we are working on a solution to the problem. 2008-10-03
The online Role of Honor for the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award now displays the name of Tony Terrigno (see news item below). We also have a photo of the presentation by the FAA to show you. 2008-10-03
The report on the September, 2008 WAMM Fly-In has now been published. Enjoy! 2008-10-02
His name hasn't appeared on their website yet, but we've learned that WAMM founder Tony Terrigno has been awarded the FAA's Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award which "recognizes pilots who have demonstrated professionalism, skill and aviation expertise by maintaining safe operations for 50 or more years." Congratulations Tony! 2008-09-22
We wish to congratulate Robert Schroeder, N118C of Minneapolis, MN who just informed us that he is now the proud owner of two Mites, the second one being N4147C which he acquired from Vernon Flacksbarth and Durber Allen. We are looking forward to photos and activity reports for both airplanes. 2008-07-29
New Mite owner Scott Lewis, N4096 recently had some work done on the engine and instrument panel but the airplane is flying again. He sent photos of a recent landing at Santa Monica airport. 2008-07-18. New photos added: 2008-07-21
Here's an unusual one for you — Mite enthusiast Salvador Sanlley of Miami, FL submitted this photo and background story about an unidentified Mite in El Salvador, Central America, in the 1960s. 2008-07-05
Please note that the next WAMM Fly-In will take place in Porterville, CA on the weekend of September 26th, 2008. We'll be looking for you! 2008-07-01
Long-time Mite Site contributor Dick Rank has been trying to sell N125C for quite some time. He's decided try another route and has asked us to tell you about it. Look for it on eBay on July 9th. We'll try to give you the link when it's posted there. 2008-07-01
We are sorry to have just found out that Ted Stewart, N4150, passed away about two years ago. Having talked with 80-year-old Ted several years ago, we knew that although he had not flow the Mite since 1976 he was too fond of the airplane to consider selling it. Frank Scully, whose father once owned N4150, went looking for the plane this past weekend only to learn from Ted's one-time neighbour in Mason, NH that the Mite has disappeared from its barn. If anyone can tell us the present location of N4150, we would much appreciate it. 2008-06-01
Here's notice of another fly-in event of interest to Mite owners. Homer Ellis extends a special invitation to the EAA Fly-In at Bartlesville, OK in September, 2008. We understand that if enough interest is shown, there will be a Mooney Mite Tent forum. We'd like to see a good response, but it's up to you owners and enthusiasts in the southern USA. 2008-06-01
Old newspaper articles about Mites not already published on the Mite Site are pretty rare, so we were pleased to receive three "new" ones, sent in by Keith Mackey, N4159. Given to Keith by his friend and neighbor, Jeff Abrams, they are about Jeff's father, Maynard Abrams, and Margaret "Peggy" Lennox, a well-known aviator from Florida. 2008-05-29
Our report on the May, 2008 WAMM Fly-In is now ready for viewing. This report links to a special page of aerial photos, the first time we have been able to offer this kind of thing, thanks to a local Porterville helicopter owner, Cory Johnson, and an unidentified photographer. 2008-05-22
At the recent fly-in, WAMM member Doug Triplett of Rosamond, CA gave us some photos to share. They seem to indicate that he has been looking for the right Mite for at least ten years! 2008-05-20
Thanks again to Boyd Maddox for giving us our first look at what's happening inside his "Mite Factory" at Houston Southwest. 2008-05-14
We've a received a series of photos from Boyd Maddox showing the arrival of Leon Buenger's N4188 at Boyd's shop at Houston Southwest. Leon recently trailered N4188 a distance of 40 miles, with police escort, in order to have Boyd put the finishing touches on the Mite. 2008-05-12
Special Invitation: Mite owners are invited to the Golden West Regional Fly-In on Friday, June 6 through Sunday, June 8, 2008 at the Yuba County Airport, Marysville, CA. Details. 2008-04-19
Porterville Alert: We've just learned that motel rooms are going to be scarce on the weekend of the WAMM Fly-In, May 16 - 18. Here's an e-mail received today from WAMM president Michael Harms:
Back in July of 1998, Ted Teach, N4122 received field approval for a nifty installation of an alternator in his M-18C. Having received many inquiries from admirers over the years, Ted has finally found the time to complete an information package, consisting of sketches, documents and photos, which is now available for downloading from the Mite Site. Ted's package, in PDF format, can be found via the Conversions and Modifications link on our Maintenance Page. Thank you, Ted! 2008-04-06
Those of you who attend WAMM Fly-Ins regularly may recall that Ted Teach of Ohio was expected at the May, 2006 gathering in Porterville but never showed up. We learned later that he made it as far west as New Mexico, then had a landing mishap. Ted used the subsequent rebuild as an opportunity to install some more goodies in his already beautiful Mite, N4122. We are pleased that he has sent some photos for us to share with you. 2008-03-27
Look again. More information has been added to the article about N3165K (below). Jess Hackenberg sent us an interesting e-mail today outlining the history of this Mite, which his father purchased directly from Mooney. 2008-03-17
Out of the blue, we've just received some "new" photos of Jess Hackenburg's N3165K, the first we have of this airplane. They were kindly send to us by Job Conger of Springfield, Illinois who is putting together a book on the history of aviation in his home town. To see what he's been up to, have a look at his website: http://www.aeroknow.com Thanks to Bill Larkins for giving Job a heads-up about the Mite Site. 2008-02-24
Perhaps because of our offer to assist, the NASM has gone ahead and produced their own information package for ordering Mite drawings from their archives. It is essentially the same as the one we've been offering, including the order form, list of drawings and additional paperwork, published in PDF format for downloading. The only thing still withheld is the price list, so acquiring copies will still require two submissions in writing. Our pages have therefore been removed and the link on our Maintenance page will now take you to the NASM document. 2008-02-02
For those of you not in the e-mail loop, here's a message from WAMM president, Michael Harms:
If you wish to make a suggestion for the program or can confirm that you will attend, we'd like to hear from you. Remember, WAMM membership is free and everyone is welcome. 2008-01-23