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European Ercoupe Newsletter

No. 17 June 2009


Dear readers,

The weather in the UK has not been very settled, so it is difficult to plan for flying. But hopefully that will change soon as we get to the main summer flying season. Coming up are big Fly-Ins - Air Britain June 20-21 at North Weald, England, the 1st German Ercoupe Meet-up at Schönhagen. Please do try and join these fly-ins!!!!

Thank you everyone who has contributed to this newsletter.  Please continue to send in letters, articles, photos, anything that might be of interest to others no matter how small.

Happy flying,

Mike Willis G-HARY

G-ONHH for sale, donated to charity

Tony Crowe writes: Before you read on the current owner of this aircraft has made the very kind and overwhelmingly generous gift to donate the proceeds from the sale of this aircraft to Charity. All the money will be donated to the Burned Children's Club.  As many of you know a number of people support the Burned Children's Club with the bacon butty fly ins and the kids flying day at Bourn that have proved very popular in the past.

Forney Aircoupe F-1A G-ONHH 1961

If you are looking for an economical two seater that’s real fun to fly and one that guarantees perfect landing every time then look no further. The Forney Aircoupe was developed from the original Ercoupe of the 1940s. This one has the conventional flight controls and would prove an ideal aircraft for a private individual or group. She cruises at around 100mph and burns only 4.5 US gallons an hour with the fuel capacity of 24 US gallons. One of the many unique features of this aircraft is that it can be flown with the windows down. Also a cockpit heater is a bonus for the winter months. It has navigation, landing and taxi lights and can be flown at night. It’s an ideal aircraft for a farm strip and has spent the last 9 years hangared and based at one that has a very marked up slope. The FAA has certified this aircraft as characteristically incapable of spinning.

This aircraft has had the same owner and pilot for the last 9 years and is in good overall condition; she will be sold with a new annual inspection. This aircraft has not been adopted by EASA and is currently certified as an Annex II aircraft in the UK. This will save the future owner money and will not require you to have an agreement with a maintenance organisation.

Some people might be put off by parts availability for older aircraft. Most if not all of the parts are available for this aircraft from the Type Certificate holder Univair

Engine: Continental C90 90hp total engine time 293 hours overhauled 30/11/2000
Interior: Two individual seats with aft baggage area
Avionics: King KX170B with VOR/LOC indicator
Accessories: Landing and taxi lights, Artificial Horizon, Heater, Opening windows in flight, Cockpit and engine cover, Navigation lights
Airframe: Total Hours since new 4,349
Fresh annual: C of A due 20/06/2010
Certification: Annex II
Year: 1961
Price: £15,000 or near offer, NO VAT

Please feel free to contact myself if you have any questions, e-mail is preferred

NOTES: Some individual/companies have come forward and donated time/services in one way or another to help with the sale of this aircraft they will all be named in due course.

Things we have covered so far:

1. The medical renewal for the new owner (or one group member) CAA or FAA
2. Annual inspection and radio annual
3. The new owner (or one group member) will have a full check ride in the aircraft by a CRI. This might cover a whole group depends on how many times the female CRI wants to keep going up and down.

Andrew Gardner adds: Not sure if you realised it, but G-ONHH was originally G-ARHA, and I believe the aircraft used by the CAA to certify the type in the UK (I think I have some magazine reprints of articles on the process somewhere).

So we have the potential to have G-ARHA, G-ARHB and G-ARHC together at some point if/when a buyer is found.

Cheers, Andrew.


Five Ercoupes follow-up

Mike writes: I sent out press releases about the gathering of Ercoupes at Great Oakley, but to my knowledge only one publication printed anything. This is "Go Flying", a UK newspaper that is distributed via flying schools and clubs.

You can see on the right that they included two photos, but for some reason another group of five got a much larger photo!



Trip reports

3rd European Ercoupe Fly-In – Antwerp (EBAW) – 23&24 June 2009

Robert Rombouts writes: For the 3rd year, our Fly-In together with the 19th Stampe Fly-In (SV4 aircrafts), was a success in Antwerp. We thank; the commandant of the Antwerp airport Mr. Wim Verbiest, Mr Karel Bos, Mr. Danny Cabooter President of the Stampe Museum, Mr. Dirk Buytaert President of the Aviation Society of Antwerp (A.S.A.) and all the members and volunteers of this society for the wonderful work they did to make this event a real success.

During the two days we had a beautiful weather, all blue sky and no wind. We had many visitors, because of the nice weather and a lot of publicity; newspapers, radio, posters and personal invitations were part of the success.

All the European Ercoupers were personally invited and repeated a few weeks before.  In Mike’s Newsletter, all the proposed advantages as, free fuel tank, BBQ and drinks, also no landing fees was offered to all the Ercoupe pilots.

The only ONE Ercoupe came all the way from Sweden, Sven-Eric Pira. His flight was about more than 10 hours; this is also his third time he came to the Antwerp happening.  With great pleasure, he won the trophy of the “Longest Flight” and the “Oldest Ercoupe” who arrived at EBAW. Congratulation Sven-Eric we hope to see you the next year again.  During his journey through Germany he hears in his headset that another Ercoupe was flying, D-ELWS, he wanted to suggest the pilot to fly also to Antwerp, but didn’t tell him.

In addition, Jean and Françoise Flacelière, the French Wing Leader, came by car, due to a hole in his Ercoupe exhaust. Jean had wonderful and rare old documents about the Ercoupe with a lot of photos, very interesting manuscripts, thanks Jean.

The nice talks, and drinks especially with that hot weather, gives us the possibility to be closer each other in our Ercoupe world.

In Mike’s Newsletter, he writes golden words “These Ercoupe Meets are designed as an excuse to fly”; why is it so difficult to have a meeting with Ercoupes on the Continent?

Now we have the next big “Air Britain Classic Fly-In” in North Weald UK (EGSX), the 20-21 June. This year it is the “Wings across the Channel”, commemorating the centenary of Bleriot’s Channel Crossing. That one you cannot miss, so I propose to all the Swedish German, French, Dutch, Swiss or all Ercoupers who are based this side of the Channel, to meet in Ostend and we fly in reduced formation over the Channel. The Hotel and the landing fee in Ostend are at my expense. This is a one-time offer.

The week after 27-28 June, Hartmut organize in Schönhagen the first German Meet-Up, this historical meeting will be for all the German Ercoupers a real excuse to be present.

Nothing will be happen if we don’t do a thing, so lets it happen, and find the best way to do it.  Sorry for the Ercoupes who stay in the hangars, give them a ride, you will see it is real fun and good for the pilots who sit in it.

With my best regards, Robert

You can see what you missed from these videos:

First flight in a Percival

Leslie Miller writes:  I had a lovely break recently, when David Hulme, owner of the beautiful Percival Vega Gull G-AEZJ based at Biggin, rang to say that he would like to meet me at Great Oakley.  I managed to get someone to run me out there, and what a delightful day it was - the 'icing on the cake' being when he took me flying in her and let me have control for 10 minutes to fly her out to Felixstowe harbour and turn her for home.  I used to work on Vega airframes and had never flown in a Percival aircraft - 65 years I had waited for the opportunity! What a great guy he is as well to talk to - he is so devoted to his aircraft and vintage types.

All the very best, Leslie

I lost my prop in flight

An amazing story - Tom Mullally in the US writes: I was flying up to Minnesota for my LSA CFI refresher renewal to meet with the examiner. I was fortunate that it did happen over the airport, but the whole flight I always had my spot picked out for such an inconvenience.

I was over the top at 2,200 msl to check the wind and at that time I throttled back and added carb heat and the engine had a big drop in rpm. I then added a little power and she really wanted to quit so I pushed carb heat back in and the engine just wanted to die, and at that time I couldn't see the prop spinning and I thought, did I lose my prop or is the engine dead?

Remember it all happens fast, I figured whatever it was I needed to do an emergency landing, so I flew left down wind of the runway intending to land on runway 31, and decided I couldn't make it so I pointed the nose down steep to build speed and banked her hard to the left to land on runway 20.

After that intense turn I kept my glide speed at 100 mph and I was lined up with the runway in front of me and made a beautiful landing. I rolled the plane to the side of the runway to a stop and said now lets see if I have a prop or what - sure as shit the prop was gone. I got out of the plane and as I was walking to the front of the plane I thought, I need to find a prop to stick back on her to fly it home and that it's not a big deal. I got to the front of the plane to check out the prop flange and it was gone too. Crank broke right at the seal.

The last couple of flights I had noticed I had been getting a little oil on the front of the cowl and I just figured that it was the seal leaking a little, but now I'm thinking it was a crack in the crank! I just bought this 'coupe a couple months ago and I only put about 8 hrs on it and that's all the time I have in Ercoupes. The engine had just been overhauled around 13 hrs ago!

The Ercoupe is not a bad gliding plane! It does drop fast but very controllable with no funny characteristics. All I can tell everyone is if you have an engine out just fly the plane and don't panic. Visualize a regular landing and land it, don't second guess yourself because you will lose a lot of altitude in a hurry!

I was fortunate that it happened when it did above the airport, but it still could have been a bad deal if I hadn't have used my experience correctly.

I have 1000+ hrs in flying Ultralights and LSA aircraft and I teach engine out procedures all the time, so it was no big deal for me just a major inconvenience! Was I scared? Not a bit, I was too busy putting my experience to work  :)  I plan to either fix it or sell it the way it is where it is! If anyone is looking for little project, give me a call and we can talk.

We flew around the area to look for the prop, but no luck!

Tom Mullally

Upcoming events

Fly-ins en France

Angers Marcé Airport LFJR will be opened the Saturday 29th August 2009 to Sunday 30, for the"2009 Anjou Ailes Retro".

Fly safe !  Jean Flaceliere


These monthly Ercoupe Meet-Ups are designed as an excuse to fly! There is a separate email list consisting of UK owners and known Ercoupe enthusiasts who are updated 1 week and 1 day ahead so you know who will be there (weather providing). If anyone else would like to be included on the EMU email list then please let me know.

June 20-21, Air Britain 2009, North Weald
A regular meet-up for Ercoupes as well as everything else. This year the celebration is "Wings across the channel" commemorating the centenary of Bleriot's crossing. Hopefully we shall see some Ercoupes crossing from France, Belgium and Germany also? Details at You must PPR for Saturday and Sunday by phoning 'The Squadron" on +44 (0)1992 524510.

July - tbd

August - tbd

4-6 September, Sywell LAA (PFA)Annual Rally
The LAA is reintroducing the annual rally this year on , so it would be good to have Ercoupe/Aircoupe representtation there. Unfortunately this now clashes with the rescheduled 3rd European Ercoupe Fly-In (see below).

20 September, Solent Aviation Society Luscombe, Pietenpol, Autogyro and ERCO/FORNEY Fly-In, Popham
Yes, after we got 4 'Coupes to Popham last year, the Solent Aviation Society has put us on the programme. So we have to go!!!

Other fly-ins of interest

June 21 AVIA Show & International Fly-In, Ursel. (Belgium)
Ursel EBUL an Navo airfield (3200 mtr long) near Ostend will have an AVIA Show or International Fly-In the 21 June 2009. New Air happening for all kind of planes, but will be fantastic if I see how they organize it.

July 16-19 Tannheim - Tannkosh EDMT – (Germany)

August 15-16  Schaffen-Diest Old Timer Fly-In. (Belgium)
Yearly old timers Fly-In, very interesting but small grass airfield.

September 4-5-6 Hahnweide Oldtimer Airshow und Meeting. (Germany)

Important meetings

July 27-31 EAA Airventure, Oshkosh, USA

Classified ads

For sale

I have a panel mount and cable for a Skymap II or III GPS. Email me if you are interested. Mike Willis


Ercoupe project wanted
Hilde van Haarlem writes: My father is very interested in finding a "project"; an Ercoupe which needs some restoration. Do you know any project available? Thank you in advance for your response. With kind regards, Hilde van Haarlem Netherlands


Ercoupe mailing lists

For a continuous discussion on Ercoupes, or a daily digest, do register for these Ercoupe mailing groups:

Social and general content
Technical information

Ercoupe Web sites

Ercoupe Owners Club
Robert Rombouts' site
Harmut's Ercoupe Maintenance & repair site
Ernst Viehweger's German Ercoupe web site
Mike Willis' site
SoCal Ercoupe Owners site 
Al DeMarzo's site which includes his 'Ercoupe swap page' 
Ed Burkhead's site

Don’t forget – any contributions to the next newsletter very welcome – email them to me at