It was Plane & Pilot's home for a week: a luxury three-bedroom house with an attached hangar, right next to a runway. SilverWing at Sandpoint, on northern Idaho's Lake Pend Oreille, is a fly-in community with more than 40 lots that are ready to go. Developer Michael Mileski and FBO manager Jason Hauck took excellent care of all our needs, and throughout the week we lived with several different airplanes that we used to explore the neighboring mountains. In this month's pilot report, Marc Lee flies the Husky A-1C—a perfect go-anywhere airplane that he likens to the Willys Jeep of the backcountry.
The other airplane featured in this issue would be right at home on the lakes of northern Idaho. An amphibian LSA manufactured in Brazil, the SeaMax is known for its superb water-handling abilities. LSA Editor James Lawrence writes of his flight over Long Island, N.Y., with Richard Rofé, a SeaMax customer who liked the plane so much he became a distributor.
Ron Mohrhoff loved his Bonanza. At the mere mention of it, he would become giddy with excitement, even after years of ownership. Whenever he'd talk about a landing he had just made, it was with the same enthusiasm as if it were the first one he had ever done. So when he told us he was selling it, it got our attention. Ron tells the story of how he stepped up to a twin Cessna 340, from the aircraft search and pre-buy to transition training and new ownership.
Senior Editor Bill Cox has experienced many Maydays, from a rough engine that was losing power over the Atlantic Ocean, 200 nm from the U.K., to an engine out over a crowded Los Angeles neighborhood. In each emergency situation, he declared a Mayday without hesitation. And each time, he suffered no penalties. This month, Bill offers advice for dire situations: If you need to, don't be afraid to declare an emergency—the decision is yours as PIC.
Dynon's D1 Pocket Panel could be a lifesaver in an emergency situation. Contributor John Ruley tests out the ultra-compact unit that packs a full primary flight-display system into only 3.3x3.5x1.1 inches. He was impressed with its perfect roll and pitch displays, and accurate speed and track. The built-in battery lasts four hours, making it an effective back-up instrument; even an instrument approach could be flown using the D1, if necessary. Additional pilot gear we review this month is Garmin's ADS-B receiver. Bill Cox tested out the GDL-39 by pairing it with his iPad2 via Bluetooth and flying around Southern California's busy airspace.
With 2012 coming to a close, CPA Harry Daniels discusses key tax issues that will impact general aviation and business use of aircraft. New IRS regulations include favorable depreciation deductions with bonus depreciation rules. Harry also addresses the tax deductibility of flying lessons for pilots seeking a new rating.
In her column, Let It Roll, Patty Wagstaff admires the resourcefulness of pilots—how we find creative solutions to problems by making the best of available resources. Turn a bad situation into a not-so-bad one, she advises, and don't give up. Do you have any questions for Patty or any of our other experts? Send them to [email protected]