Mite of the Month, March 2002

This month's Mite belongs to Larry Minch of North Royalton, Ohio. N4180 is a '55 model which has 1350 hours on it since new.

When Larry bought the plane, N4180 was listed for sale with 1269 hours TT on it. It had a new wood prop plus an old spare and all new tires, brakes, and donuts (shock absorbers). Its vertical fin had been rebuilt as well. The previous owner flew it only occasionally, but Larry has put another 75 hours on it since then, most of that in the past year. He's been having a lot of fun.

Larry explained that he purchased N4180 two years ago from the estate of a friend who had let him fly it a couple times while he was still living, so he had learned to appreciate it even before he had thoughts of owning it. It had a total rebuild in 1988 and since that time has only needed normal maintenance. It has no electrics but does have a portable VHF Comm and of course a portable GPS for working around the Class B airspaces, etc. in his part of the country. The longest trip he has made in it was from Cleveland Ohio to Brodhead Wisconsin for the antique fly-in (it was the only Mite there).

Larry says the aerial photographer was Mike Cuy from Valley City, Ohio who used a Sony Mavica 1.3 MP. The photos were taken last August, 2001 near Valley City at private field called Helmicks. "They were on 35mm negative film and I had them put on a digital CD after Mike gave me the negatives. I think they would have been better quality if I had taken them with my digital right away. The transferring seems to degrade the quality somewhat...."

Mike had to fly and shoot at the same time from his Pietenpol. It looks like the open cockpit Piet makes an excellent camera platform for aerial photos. But Larry says, "I hope to have some better ones soon when the weather cooperates and we can have someone flying and someone else taking the pictures. Also need a faster plane so that I don't have to fly so slow." Well, that's a Mite for you -- other small planes have trouble keeping up with it! As for the photos, we like them. How about you?

If Mike Cuy's Pietenpol, N48MC, looks familiar to you, that's because it appeared two years ago in Sport Aviation Magazine after winning at Oshkosh. We've been told that Speedvision TV often runs a video that features Mike and his Piet as an example of a homebuilt.

The Mite Site records show that N4180 was previously owned by:

Winnis E. Clark of Edmonds, WA in 1967 - 1969.
Dean Calvert of Godfrey, IL in 1974
Worley Aviation of Dover, DE in 1994.
Robert White of Columbia Station, OH until July 2000