Parents make all sorts of sacrifices for their children. One of the greatest — at least in the aviation world — is selling an airplane because a baby is on the way.
Earlier this year, when I ran into Eric Adams from Lakeland, Fla., at Sun ’n Fun, he was carefully placing FOR SALE signs on his Fisher 202, also known as a Koala.
Inside the single-seat experimental airplane were award plaques from previous shows, including the award for Best Materials Kit from Sun ’n Fun.
“Because my first child is on the way,” Adams said with a proud smile. “Since the Koala is a one-place design, it isn’t exactly what you would call family friendly.”
Adams has approximately 1,100 hours in sport aircraft. “My wife has been sitting in the hangar for many a year reading books while I was flying ultralights,” he explained.
The Koala isn’t the fastest airplane out there, he says. “It will do about 70 to 75 miles for cruise, 30 for stall. It has a J-3 Cub fuel tank so you can fly for about three hours before refueling.”
The engine is a Rotax 503 single carb, with dual ignition. The airframe is an all wood design, similar to what was used in early military aircraft. The instrument panel sports analog gauges and a handheld radio.
When he is not flying, Adams helps run a sport plane dealership in South Lakeland Airpark. His sales skills came in handy during Sun ’n Fun as he did lots of demo flights in the Koala. Adams reports that he was able to sell the aircraft on the last day of the show.
“We packed it into a Penske truck and drove from Lakeland to Bealsville, Pa., to a small Amish community where Sam Peachy took ownership of the Fisher 202. Sam, who has an extensive collection of Light-Sport Aircraft, hosts several small fly-ins each year to bring the world of aviation to the small community, which is a mix of Amish and Mennonite families.”
And what of the plans to get a more family -riendly airplane? Still in the works, says the new father.
“We are still looking at Cessna 172s and hope to make a purchase after the first of the year, giving us a plane capable of flying our little family and expanding our vacation spots,” he said.