As Ron Mattson, our gracious host, said of the President's
Trophy, "It should be given to the bad weather, because it has been
the only thing to show-up at most of the fly-ins!!" The weather,
unfortunately, deterred anyone from flying-in to yesterday's BAC East
Central Fly-in that was held at the Griffith-Merrillville, Indiana
Airport. It, however, had one, if not the, largest turn-outs of any
Musketeer fly-in I've ever been to! I didn't get a total count, but
at one time we had 24 attendees.

Ron did a super job of organizing the event and cooking! We had
hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken wings, dessert, etc. Everyone thought
the wings were quite hot, but Ron said he didn't make them as hot as
he usually does - thank God!!

We were given a tour of the G&N motor shop that is based at Griffith.
Jim from G&N gave us a very thorough tour that took about 1 3/4
hours. He took us from the time an engine is received at the shop
until it is ready to be shipped out. Not being very mechanically
inclined, I got a real education about what is involved in this very
important aspect of our flying. Engines being worked on spanned the
gamut of normal TBO, to prop strikes, to one that an A&P ruined by
putting in a gasket the wrong way. Jim is a proponent of using
straight grade oils (50 in the Summer and 40 in the Winter, unless it
gets real cold) rather than blends, although he did say that he
thought Phillips made the best blended oil. He mentioned that the oil
screen (not the one that is used instead of an oil filter, but the
one that is about the size of your middle finger and catches larger
pieces of metal) doesn't get taken out of the engine and inspected
enough. Lycoming has had engines returned after 2,000 hours that have
never had the safety wire taken off the bolt that holds this filter -
it still has Lycoming's factory paint on the safety wire! Jim's #1
advise for making your engine last to TBO is to fly your plane.
Corrosion is the worst enemy we have to fight, and not running the
engine often enough gives corrosion a foothold. He also mentioned
that anyone using a Tannis heater (as I do) should not keep it
plugged in all the time. Plugging it in the night before your flight
is the best method of using the heater. If it is left plugged in for
extended periods it will cause condensation, which leads to corrosion.

We had about 15 pilots in attendance for my presentation on flying to
Alaska. None of them fell asleep for more than a few minutes, so I
guess the presentation (or my loud voice) was enough to keep their

Pictures of the event can be found by clicking on this link

My thanks again to Ron Mattson for hosting a very nice fly-in. Don't
forget about the next East Central Fly-in that will be held at
Oshkosh on September 10th and 11th.

David Snodgrass
BAC East Central Regional Director
Beech Be23 N6083N
North Manchester, IN

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