Sunday, September 16, 2012

Labors of love, built to soar

By Luke Hegdal
Sunday, September 16, 2012


Flying: There’s always a few people willing to try it. Until modern commercial and private aircraft came along, attempts to fly almost always met with spectacular results and often death, or at least the next best thing.

History is, in fact, full of people who suffered injury while attempting to take to the air. Smarter inventors didn’t attempt to fly themselves. Tito “Mouse Lover” Burattini, for example, was an Italian inventor who tied a cat to model airplane in 1647.

Whether these inventors and visionaries used a large kite, hot air balloon or aircraft that required energetic wing-flapping, they had to build the craft themselves, much like modern experimental aircraft enthusiasts.

Carlos Grageda, who studied airplane mechanics at Boise State University in the 1970s, is one of several airplane owners who keep (and build) experimental light aircraft at Martin Field in College Place.

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