Short Final: Aircraft Identification


From AVweb reader Ron Rands: Overheard on the radio while en route to Oshkosh. (An Albatross is a Grumman-built Amphibian. See photo):

Albatross: “Peoria approach, Albatross N54321.”

Peoria approach: “Albatross N54321, Peoria approach.”

Albatross: “Peoria, request flight following, destination Oshkosh – Oscar Sierra Hotel.”

Peoria approach: “Albatross N54321 flight following approved, squawk 2451.”

Albatross: “Squawk 2451.”

After a brief pause…

Peoria approach: “Albatross N54321, isn’t your plane the one with spare tires on the sides?”

Mark Phelps
Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.


  1. Apologies to Ron Rands for misspelling his last name – I fixed it here but cannot change the email.

  2. That’s Ok… ATC never says “flight following approved” but I guess we just shrug at the display of unfamiliarity.

  3. Glad you guys liked it. Of course the credit should go to the controller, whoever he was.
    I had 2 more lines of the radio chat that AVweb didn’t use:

    Peoria approach: “Albatross N54321, Isn’t your plane the one with spare tires on the
    Albatross: no response
    Me, laughing: “Well Peoria I thought it was funny, you have me laughing.”