Glasair I – Still Strong After 20 Years

Submitted by Jeff Wernli V.P. Sales & Marketing, Stoddard-Hamilton


As we come toward the end of Stoddard- Hamilton’s 20th year anniversary, l thought it would be appropriate to mention our 20 year old Glasair I. N89SH has received a large amount of press coverage in its day. This was the first Glasair demonstrator and was first shown as a taildragger. I am rather partial to this plane as I built kit number 334 which was a taildragger. My plane flew July of 1989, I sold it last summer after placing 830 hours on it. I really loved that plane and I loved the tail wheel. I regret the day I sold it—I think I just had a brain lapse that day. It is like selling a child. As I left the airport I actually cried!

I think what caused some of this brain lapse was the fact that I am fortunate enough to fly some of the greatest aircraft that are flying today. Just this last Friday I did another first flight of a Glasair III which was Jeff Lavelle’s here at Arlington. The plane was incredible! OK, I am getting a little off track here. Anyway, flying all these neat aircraft made me think that it was time to sell my old Glasair I.

I am sure pleased we have N89SH sitting out in our hangar. This plane now mainly serves as a company toy. If you want to go play at lunchtime or fly over to Grandma’s this is the plane we would want our employees to take. I must admit there are times when I go out for an attitude adjustment flight. When I walk into the hanger I see the Glasair II and III and the GlaStar and decide which one to take. Then, over there in the corner I see the adjustment also. (It must have been a bad day). We then met up for some formation flight. This is really a great amount of fun.

I do miss the Glasair I and I am very thankful to have the Stoddard-Hamilton, Glasair I to go play with. I know I have at least 2 more Glasair III first flights to do in the next few months. Soon I will be getting excited about Reno again, however, I am sure there will be days when I still have the urge to go out and fly the Glasair I.

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Omar Filipovic
Omar Filipovic is president of the Glasair Aircraft Owners Association as well as the chief tinkerer and content editor for this website. He is also the web editor for Kitplanes Magazine. Omar is building a GlaStar in Portland, Oregon.