The North American P-51 Mustang
Oshkosh 2006
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P-51 Mustang at Oshkosh 2006
EAA Airventure Walkabout
story and photography by Curtis Fowles

Walkabout EAA Airventure style equals sore feet! But along with those sore feet you get to see many new aviation innovations and upgrades. You can take a leather left seat and check out the latest glass panels inside many single engine aircraft. Some by big-name manufacturers like Cessna, Piper and Beechcraft. You can also find the same brand new equipment in lesser known and even unknown aircraft makers. If you like the old look, don't worry, there are still some clean-looking traditional style panels.

If you are going to spend 300k + you are going to want some luxury and cool toys. Be ready for sticker shock though, because that 300k will not get you that highest-performance single. Two or two and a half times that is what you need. You may also have to learn to use a joystick with your left hand. Very weird if you have done any computer gaming. They say it is easy to get used to.

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Airventure shows off the smaller bizjets too. Some are very small and designed to be economical to operate. Honda has designed such a jet with very unique wing mounted rear engines. What I mean is that a quick look it just seems like other bizjets with the engines mounted on the rear fuselage. Look closer and you will see the engines mounted on a pylon assembly that rises out of the rear wing. The announcer stated all the good reasons for this, but I don't remember any. You can look it up if you want.

Check out all the new conversions too. Want a turboprop for your A36 Bonanza? How about floats for your Cub? Turbocharge your Cherokee Six? The latest moving map weather GPS for your P-51? Sure would make coming out to Oshkosh each year easier. The weather around here changes constantly.

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Whatever mod or gadget you like, you will most likely find it and a few others like it. Just keep walking and nursing those feet along. If you are working on a project and want to take a look at others who have completed theirs, Airventure is the best place to do that. See the awesome, the good and the (uhh, well you know). Sometimes finding out how not to do it is just as important as how to do it. It is all here. Take some days off and come out and see it for yourself.

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