Greetings from The Aero Experience Team


The Aero Experience is a celebration of Midwest aviation and aerospace achievement. We invite you to join us as we explore the treasures of Midwest aviation through first-hand experiences. Our contributors take turns flying lead, and we are always looking for new destinations. Check in with The Aero Experience frequently to see where we will land today, and then go out and have your own aero experiences!

Blue skies,

Carmelo Turdo, Mark Nankivil and Fred Harl - The Aero Experience Team

Friday, March 16, 2018

Elite Aviation Hosts FAA Safety Seminar, Unveils New Complex Training Aircraft

By Carmelo Turdo
Elite Aviation held the March speaker event Thursday in their pilot training and maintenance facility at Spirit of St. Louis Airport. The program topic, "Avoiding Fuel Emergencies," was presented by FAA Safety Team Program Manager Phil Dixon. The interactive session included discussion of numerous case studies illustrating the unfortunate results of poor fuel management by pilots of all levels of experience along with the positive steps that should be taken to avoid most causes of fuel starvation and fuel exhaustion. Even with the available high-technology instrumentation and the visual check techniques learned by every student pilot, fuel mismanagement remains a nagging, yet preventable cause of general aviation and commercial aviation accidents and incidents.

This event was part of the Elite Speaker Series held monthly at Elite Aviation. The speaker series features FAA Safety Team programs as well as presentations by prominent aviators and aviation industry representatives. Elite Aviation invites current pilots and anyone interested in flying to attend these events and check out their late-model aircraft fleet. During the evening, Elite Aviation's newest aircraft, a Piper PA-32RT-300T Turbo Saratoga, was on display in the hangar for attendees to preview. The 6-seat, retractable gear, complex aircraft will soon be available for advanced training and rental. The turbocharged engine and oxygen system allow this aircraft to fly at higher altitudes and faster speeds than most other single-engine, piston aircraft. The recent paint and interior updates make this aircraft look, feel and smell like new. Contact Elite Aviation for details.

The Aero Experience thanks Elite Aviation for hosting their monthly speaker series and for providing full-service flight training and piston aircraft maintenance at Spirit of St. Louis Airport. The upcoming monthly speaker series events are listed in the flyer above. Contact Elite Aviation today to learn more.  

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Lee's Summit Municipal Airport Begins Hangar and Taxiway Modernization

By Carmelo Turdo
Lee's Summit Municipal Airport has embarked on a hangar replacement and taxiway improvement program that will transform the aging infrastructure currently serving the local Kansas City area aviation community. The project began February 5, and the hangars are expected to be completed for occupancy by July 1. Since the late 1970s, the airport has grown into a significant aviation asset, and several runway improvement projects have made it an inviting place for corporate jet aircraft operators as well.

The following views of the old hangars, and a sample of the afternoon traffic, were captured during our recent visit: 

Friday, March 9, 2018

Big River Aviation Makes House Call to Service Aircraft in Lee's Summit

By Carmelo Turdo
Big River Aviation made a special house call this week to perform some follow-up maintenance work on the classic Cessna 172A delivered to customer Griffith Pickett at Lee's Summit Municipal Airport in January. The plane received significant maintenance and upgrades in St. Louis last fall, as described in a previous story on The Aero Experience, and it is now being used by Pickett to regain his Private Pilot currency. The Aero Experience accompanied Big River Aviation owner Paul Voorhees on a road trip to Lee's Summit Thursday with a truckload of tools needed to get the job done.

The beautiful 1960 Cessna 172A features the then new swept tail fairing and the accommodation for IFR capability for the type. This aircraft has received essential updates and exterior paint, but retains the general cockpit layout. It is an overall very efficient and fun plane to fly. During our visit, the aircraft received a replacement fuel quantity transmitter and a new weight and balance was calculated. It was nice to see Mr. Pickett and his wife, Janet, again during our visit, and we hope they have many years of flying enjoyment together!