Mite of the Month, December 2003

N10301 is a 1955 M-18C-55, serial number 340, owned by Toni Guttman of Soquel, CA. It has the rare Continental A65-12 engine and an electrical system. These photos were taken at the October, 2003 Porterville Fly-In.

This airplane would have been assigned N4175 out of the Mooney Factory in Kerrville, TX but it was exported to Canada in May, 1956 and registered as CF-JCT to Garner Bros. Aviation, Vancouver, British Columbia. In July of 1956 another Canadian certificate of registration was issued to Frank Ogden of Pickering, Ontario. Frank, whose exploits are mentioned elsewhere on this site, ran an aircraft import business and was responsible for bringing several M-18s into Canada. In October of 1956, CF-JCT was sold to Charles L. McEwen of Moncton, New Brunswick. There were only 37:36 hours on the Mite by May of 1958, and in December of that year it returned to the USA, sold to Raymond C. Dorosynald of Houston, TX.

These are Toni's comments about his Mite:

"When I bought the plane it had an IFR panel, which was not all working. Also there was a vacuum horn to run the vacuum instruments. I had all the IFR stuff taken off, since I don't plan to use it and to save weight; also the horn and all the vacuum instruments. If a future owner wants to put anything back, it's all in a big box."

"Now there is not much on the panel: vertical-card mag compass, airspeed, turn & bank, tachometer, altimeter, oil pressure, oil temp, ammeter, voltmeter. It looks terrible with those blanked-out holes, but I actually enjoy flying with just those few instruments. I would like to have a gyrocompass (but it isn't essential), also that artificial horizon and maybe a vertical speed indicator. Don't even want a VOR - I use GPS all the time. I do have a built-in radio and transponder.

By the way, I like having an electrical system but no longer use the starter. It's more fun to hand-prop it."

"I added a spin-on oil filter kit by El Reno, because I think clean oil is important. In my opinion this is a better setup than AirWolf, which uses hoses. This bolts right onto the block. I was hoping to avoid taking off the screen for inspections (it's really hard) but it turns out that has to be done anyway."

Photo credits: Michael Harms, Mark Hofmann, Dave Rutherford.

"I plan not to use any vacuum instruments. Originally I meant to put in an electric artificial horizon, but finally decided it was too expensive (over $1200)."

(The Mite has a Flottorp 65A66 wooden propeller).

"A Flottorp variable-pitch propeller came with the plane. It needs to be overhauled. I like the idea of using it but it is heavier than the fixed-pitch wood prop, and my plane is already pretty heavy with its starter, generator, and battery."

"During a discussion a year or two back in Bill Vandersande's hangar, someone pointed out that if a tire blew at a remote airport it would be hard to find one to fit, so it is a good idea to bring one along. That's what I do. It started another big discussion this time."

"These aerial photos were taken Saturday, Nov. 22 near Hollister, California. Charlie Miller flew his Stinson, and Mark Hofmann took the pictures. The windows of the Stinson don't open, so Mark had to push the door open far enough to shoot through the crack. We considered tossing the camera over so I could take a picture of them, but decided not to try it!

The dry brown hills are typical for California in the fall. I think it's beautiful, but it probably looks pretty desolate to people who don't live here. Now the rains are starting and soon the hills will be turning green with new grass."

Here are some notable log book entries showing the varied history of this airplane::