Episode 73. Flying a vintage airplane across the country, with David Tulis

David TulisA spur-of-the-moment airplane purchase presented David Tulis with the adventure of a lifetime: flying a 1953 Tri-Pacer across the country. He tells the story of this fun and challenging trip in this episode, including what it was like to cross the Rockies with a 135-horsepower engine, the value of mentors, and the appeal of vintage airplanes. David is also a highly accomplished photographer, so he explains why photos still matter in a world of videos and offers some practical tips for taking better in-flight photos. In the Ready to Copy segment, David tells us his favorite photo of all time, his best best tip for podcasters, and his opinion about famous Atlanta drinks.


  • Buying the airplane: “Chris Rose leaned over and said, ‘Hey I’m not even a pilot, but if you don’t buy it I will.’”
  • Getting checked out in 30-knot winds: “That was my first indoctrination to the Wild West.”
  • Flying in the mountain west: “All of a sudden it’s mountains, and snow, and evergreens, and no people… and more mountains, and more snow, and higher terrain, and no people.”
  • How to prepare for a long cross country: “You really need good mentorship. You really need good planning. You need a Plan A and a Plan B - maybe a Plan C.”
  • Paying for small luxuries: “One of the lessons learned when you’re flying across the country… Roll it into a hangar that’s heated. Keep the battery happy.”
  • How to buy a vintage airplane: “Do some homework, get a good pre-buy - as we always stress - and then join the type clubs for the gotchas.”
  • Why photos matter in a world of endless video: “It freezes a moment in time.”


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