Friday, February 8, 2019

Mega electric tug

I have a thing for giving my big Bone a good tug, apparently.  I have a Sidewinder, a re-engined gas tug, and now a brand new super heavy duty KingAir ready electric monster tug.  I bought it from a KingAir guy in Livermore after he decided to move into a managed situation that includes pull out service.  Even though I don't really need another tug, it was too good a deal to pass up.  There is just something about a great big power tug is so satisfying.  The thing weighs a ton and I had to rent a heavy duty uhaul trailer just to pick it up.


Electric car towing an electric tug.  Brave new world!  Unfortunately the thing hadn't been run in at least a few years, and the batteries were toast.


It's two 12 volt heavy duty marine batteries wired in series.  They didn't even have enough charge to move the tug, and it was a bitch to drag it around without power.  $215 worth of batteries later...


All wired up and ready to rock and roll...


Hopefully I'll try her out this weekend!


Sunday, January 13, 2019

New old stock

Now that I own a vintage airplane nothing sounds like music to my ears more than the phrase "new old stock".  Sounds like an oxymoron, but the term refers to old surplus parts that have sat on the shelf for years and years and never been used.  Thus they are new in the sense that they haven't been used, but old stock having been manufactured decades ago.  Fortunately, the TwinBonanza was used in military service and the military would always keep 3-4 spare parts for every part flying, resulting in plentiful parts availability for my old bird.  Most of the stock was bought up by various parts warehouses and you can call them up if you need something specific, or do a parts search, or monitor eBay.  So far I haven't had any issues finding things.  There are a few items I'm always keeping an eye out for,  for example exhaust pipes and augmenter tubes.  Recently I saw a set of "NOS" fuel caps and since one of mine was a bit sticky, I bought the lot.


Beauty.  I love the gunmetal grey look, vs the old ones that had been painted over a few times.  I had seen caps before, but they usually had gallon markings engraved that didn't match my fuel tanks, and I didn't want that.  Here are the old caps.


Used ones seem to fetch 60-75$ each so hopefully that will offset the pain of $200 each for the NOS ones!