EAA chapter 80 has a new member

Well, last night was my first EAA chaptermeeting. Lots of nice guys there, fairly interesting and lively meeting. I’d estimate there were 40-50 people attending.I got to talk to several RV builders and flyers who are flying and/or building a range of planes including a -7, -7a, -8, and I think there was a -9 builder or flyer too.  I lost track.  I’ve got a couple of offers for rides in a -6 and a -7A, which I plan to take them up on.  I’d love to find out if I even fit in the thing, if it’s reasonably comfortable flying, etc.  One guy is offering to take Lisa and me both up (one at a time, of course) when there’s a fly-in at Plattsmouth in a few weeks.

After looking at the pros and cons, I’m thinking the -7 or -7a might be a better way to go than the -9a.  While I don’t plan on any serious aerobatics, it would be nice to have that option available.  There doesn’t seem to be a lot of practical differences between the -7 and -9, other than I could hang a 180HP IO-360 on it and cruise at 200 MPH.  Stall speed is a little higher, but not enough to be a real factor.  And, I’ve seen some pretty simple solutions for the baggage space issue — it looks like adding an extended baggage area for storing lightweight but bulky items like pillows and jackets would be quite simple and not cause big balance problems.