Mite of the Month, November 2000

N325M, an M-18C, serial number 206, was built in April, 1950. It belongs to Tim Lucero of Lompoc, California.

Tim purchased 325M for $3000 in 1975 from J.M. Wright in Denver, although the Mite was originally kept in Boulder. It was spray-painted blue over a "super" Stits covering. The wing spar has been spliced, but you would never know it. Tim bought his Mite when it was at 250 hours, and now has 881 hours TTSN.

Tim tells the story about how he headed for Oshkosh immediately after buying his Mite. On the way, he made an unscheduled landing in an alfalfa field and had to thread the plane between two fence posts before pushing onto a nearby road for take-off. He paid $20 to a couple of guys to stop traffic, then took off, first flying under and then over some telephone wires. Because he was flying NORDO (without a radio), when he arrived at Oshkosh he snuck into queue and made his landing behind a Bonanza. It was a great adventure.

For communications, Tim now has a hand-held, battery-powered radio which he has mounted into a circular panel opening using a cast aluminum fitting. Like most other pilots now, he uses a GPS (Lowrance in this case) for cross-country navigation.

Tim flies his plane the way many others would like to -- where and when he wants; freedom without frills.

Although he is the "senior" member of WAMM, Tim always sleeps in his tent when visiting the Fly-ins. As a matter of fact, he still uses his original camping gear.

At Porterville in October 2000, he also brought a collapsible easy chair in which to snooze after riding around on his scooter, all of which he packed into his Mite's baggage compartment.

That's a new prop on 325M's smooth-running Continental A65 engine.

Tim has a great sense of humour. Typically, he broke the gang up during breakfast one morning at Airport Annie's with another of his famous one-liners: While the waitress was occupied elsewhere, he grabbed the coffee pot and began filling cups. When she returned to the table, he cracked, "You can't complain about the service when you ain't getting any." She took the teasing gracefully!

Due to Tim's generosity, another lucky pilot (yours truly) experiences the thrill of flying a Mite for the first time.






As a matter of history, this Mite was owned by Leslie Trigg of San Clemente, CA in 1967, then Jesse M. Wright of Las Vegas, NV in 1969.

October, 2000