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Older Decathlon - airframe abuse?

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Old January 6th 09, 03:33 AM posted to rec.aviation.aerobatics
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Default Older Decathlon - airframe abuse?

Me and couple buddies are considering buying a early 80's model 8KCAB
but I am a little worried about doing sportsman level aerobatics in a
plane that old. Not having owned a plane before I was wondering if
anyone on the group have experience with older decathlons and how they
hold up to that type of abuse. Someone mentioned to me it wasn't a
great idea because airframe fatigue. The last thing I want is for
something major to go 'snap' while I'm at the bottom of the box and
have no hope of surviving.

Old January 6th 09, 04:09 AM posted to rec.aviation.aerobatics
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Default Older Decathlon - airframe abuse?

I had a 1979 8KCAB Super Decathlon for around four years before moving into
an Extra. They are great planes- easy to maintain and fly. In my opinion,
Sportsman should be no problem, but should be flown smoothly, just as a
Pitts is flown differently from a monoplane, although I'm far from an

If it still has a wood spar, a thorough inspection is critical to look for
broken nose ribs, compression cracks on the top of the spar, loose rib
nails, cracks on the lift strut attach fitting, and cracks on the seat hinge
as well. So, it really would pay to get a good pre-purchase inspection by
someone who is intimately familiar with the aircraft.

They are great planes.


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