VG-21 Squadron







Our thanks to Shirley DaMotta for her efforts in getting the last two Newsletters created and mailed to you. Distance caused a lot of problems so the Beerys are back.

Aircraft Registration

I received a Triennial Aircraft Registration Report from Okalahoma City the other day. If you need to update your registration, contact; Civil Aviation Registry AFS750, Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center, P.O. Box 25504, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73125-0504.

West Coast Fly-In

The second annual West Coast Varga Fly-in will be held at Santa Maria Airport October 6 & 7. The event will be hosted again by members, Dave Casey, Brian Chersky, and Bob Dusair. There is a Raddison Hotel right on the field at SMX and hopefully they will give us a discount as they did last year. The rates were between $100 and $120. Free overnight tie-down whether or not you stay at the Raddison. Either way, you must check in with the hotel for a ramp pass. Raddison phone number is 805-928-8000. Please contact Dave at 714-206-8336 or Bob at 805-602-0146 for more info or to RSVP. I’m sure we will be putting out another Newsletter prior to this fly-in and we’ll include any additional info.


Shirley DaMotta, being much more at east with the computer than either one of us felt that the way to go would be to have a website for the VG-21 Squadron. We had mixed feelings about this subject because there are already two websites for our aircraft type. The two major reasons we really prefer to operate as we have for the past umpteen years is for one thing, nobody would join the squadron, they would simply use the website. Another reason, not 100% of the members have computers or want to use them for this purpose. We didn’t see any time savings if we still have to produce a hard copy and send a copy via snail to mail to those that prefer it that way. If the majority want to go hi-tech, our participation would be limited.


Hold-Your-Breath-Episode No. 2
(by Shirley DaMotta)

We contacted Shirley DaMotta to see if the FAA had changed any information on her unfortunate off-field landing. She replied with an e-mail saying that there’s been no significant information since the preliminary report of the cracked oil cooler. She then told us about the episode with her replacement Varga. With her permission, here’s the story:

I LOVE the new Varga. I had another hold-your breath episode, however, and this time I’ve decided to just “do” the overhaul. This engine has 1400 hours on it, but only 20 in the last 5 years (not including the 10 I’ve put on it since January), and no major overhaul in its 30 years. It was burning almost “no” oil, and compressions were good, but after the accident in October, every timer I climb in, I think about what potential problems may or may not have been addressed in those 30 years. I know you can read through the logbook, but that isn’t always a clear picture. By all outward signs, it has been well maintained — it was housed in the heated hangar belonging to the previous owner’s A&P who I think put some of those 20 hour on it while maintaining whatever he noticed needing attention.

Anyway, flew to Phoenix Regional (about 30 miles south of Chandler ) and did some slow flight and some touch-n-goes. It was running fine, but in the last climb-out, it “hiccupped a couple of times and then powered itself back to about 1500 rpms. I thought it was going to quit, but it maintained that, with pressures and temps still in the green, and we turned around and landed there. Did a run-up, and it was rough on both mags. Added power and leaned a bit and that made it worse so we tied it down and a friend picked us up. I was thinking maybe “stuck valve.”

Went back with mechanics and compressions were good, valves were fine, but it was still not getting full power... barely 2200 rpm in full power static run-up, They said it seemed like a carburetor problem, so we removed the carb and had it overhauled. Replaced it and then got 2400 rpm in full power static run-up. Flew it back to Chandler without incident. But I’ve had enough, and this time I’m not fooling round - I’m doing the overhaul.

Lycon (at Falcon) has had it for 3 weeks now. When they got it apart, I went over there and they said whoever did the oil pump AD in 1996 used the wrong hardware when they replaced the oil intake tube and did not safety wire the oil pump (that’s what I mean about the logbook not always being a clear picture of what you have). There is also a hairline crack in the crankshaft! They said with some luck, it may just be surface thing, but I’m preparing myself for having to buy a new one. The exhaust system and oil cooler have been sent out for overhaul and/or replacement. They will replace my Bendix mags with new Slicks, and also 4 new Lycoming cylinders. Of course I’m replacing all the hoses, gaskets and hardware that I can, solenoids, etc.


Shirley went on to say that while the engine work is being done, she is re-doing the interior which we will put in the next Newsletter.

Product Review
April 2007
(by Lee Beery)

We know we are always asking members to contribute items for the Newsletter and we’ve had limited success with that. Just recently we had the opportunity to upgrade the GPS that we’ve been using to a different brand and it gave us the idea of why don’t we do a product review in the Newsletter as. we are sure many members have experienced positive and negative results with items they have installed in their aircraft. We will kick off this feature in this Newsletter doing a review on two popular portable GPS units.

A couple of years ago, I flew to the Copper State EAA Fly-In using my Apollo Fly Buddy and experienced a few navigation problems. So it was time to get a GPS. I purchased a used Garmin 196 (gray screen) and entered the era of GPS navigation.

This unit served me well but I did find it difficult to operate. I even designed, built and sold several support tables for the Garmin unit. The one major problem with the 196 is the small screen.

Then a friend introduced me to the Lowrance 2000C Air Map, color and terrain mapping. In contrast to the odd shape Garmin, the 2000C is more book-like and comes with a perfect mount system for VG-21 aircraft. The display is a third again larger than the Garmin and very easy to read all text. The three nay pages of the Garmin cannot compare with the nine pages you will find in Air Map 2000C. Both units use Jeppesen data base. Jeppesen updates for the Lowrance units are free but cost $35 for the Garmin.

In my opinion, the 2000C is twice the unit I replaced and is easier to use. If you compare prices you will find the Lowrance discounted to $795 while similar units like the Garmin 296 are selling for $1495 (Trade-A-Plane). I have been using the 2000C for about six months and I still need to refer to the manual or the interactive DVD because there is so much more in this unit you can employ in day- to- day navigation. If you are in the market for a “state of the art GPS”, I suggest you look at the Lowrance 2000C.

If I have upset any of you who are happy with your Garmin units, I apologize. The Garmin does the job but with the Lowrance I was able to put the magnifying glass back in my tool box.

Aircraft for Sale

Frank Gulick and Buddy Wyatt have not sold their aircraft. Both being Shinn, and both very reasonably price. Refer to the last Newsletter for all the details.

Loss of Medical
(by Lee Beery)

On the original draft of this Newsletter, Pat wrote that I was dealing with prostate cancer. I didn’t think that information should be in the Newsletter and had her remove it. Then I realized that many of our male club members could be faced with this problem at any time. Here is a condensed report up to today’s date.

Last fall, my doctor sent me to an urologist because my PS number was elevated to 7. I had no other symptoms. The urologist performed a biopsy (not much fun) and presented us with the challenge of picking the type of treatment based on the biopsy findings and a Gleason score of 7. We chose radioactive seed implant. I lost count of the number of 1-rays and scans required. This procedure as done by an oncologist from southern California as an outpatient, and get this -  on my birthday.

The procedure (I’d call it an operation) was not all that bad and within one day, I could do just about anything. Everything went fine until I had to renew my Medical last month. I passed the exam fine but my AME could not issue my Class Medical certificate because of the prostate cancer. He was very good about getting all the necessary documents to the FAA Medical Certificate Division in Oklahoma City . All we can do now is be patient and think positive,  IT WILL BE ISSUED SOON. If any of you fellows have some questions, feel free to give me a call.

Club Caps
(by Bob DuSair)

Bob DuSair contacted us about the feasibility of club members purchasing caps. He asked us to forward an e-mail to all those who have an e-mail address. For all those of you without e-mail, you need to visualize what we saw in the e-mail attachment. We visualize it as baseball cap (not sure of color) with the pre-WVII star and, according to Bob, it has VG-21 on the side. For a better description and more information, please contact Bob DuSair at 805-602-0146.

Aircraft Data Sheet
(by Shirley DaMotta & the Beerys)

Included with this Newsletter is an Aircraft Data/History document. This is a good rainy day project. It’s a one-place handy resource for maintaining records of your aircraft information. We started this document when we first obtained our Varga and have found it extremely useful. My Al (aircraft inspector) thinks it’s a fine idea in the event the logbooks are lost. You will also find it helpful when you sell the aircraft. All the data is in one place. Hope you fmd this useful.

Pat & Lee Beery
707-279-0259 or varga@mchsi,com



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