Ercoupe Odyssey

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Perhaps Allen Rothenberg. of Rockville, Md., saw our recent Ercoupe coverage, because he wrote to tell us he's planning a 13,000-mile trip in the low-wing plane-for-all-people around the perimeter of the lower 48 states to celebrate his 75th birthday. "I thought you might be interested in some information about an Ercoupe that not only will fly past the Sun 'n Fun airport but will log about 13,000 miles in, what for me, is an epic solo flight," Rothenberg wrote AVweb. The quirky little planes were designed to be easy to fly with the rudder and aileron controls linked to theoretically provide simplified car-like steering. The landing gear was castered to allow crosswind landings without rudder input. Many were retrofitted with rudder control. Rothenberg's sports a 90-hp Continental and will do about 100 mph. He's added an automotive GPS and transponder to the limited standard panel. His plan is to hit the farthest northern, eastern, southern and western airports in the lower 48 and he'll also touch down in the geographic center. He plans to leave May 15 and be back for his birthday on June 13.