NTSB Identification: BFO93LA122.
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Accident occurred Monday, July 12, 1993 in CONNEAUT, OH
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/17/1994
Aircraft: SCHULTZ/BOWERS FLY BABY 1A, registration: N4295X
Injuries: 1 Serious.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

WHILE IN CRUISE, THE AIRPLANE'S ENGINE LOST PARTIAL POWER. THE PILOT STATED HE WAS OVER A FIELD AND DECIDED TO CIRCLE AND LAND IN THE FIELD. THE PILOT STATED THAT DURING THE SECOND TIME HE WENT AROUND THE FIELD, DOWNWIND, THE AIRPLANE'S ENGINE LOST TOTAL POWER. THE AIRPLANE IMPACTED A BERM ON THE SIDE OF A ROAD JUST SHORT OF THE FIELD. WITNESSES TO THE ACCIDENT STATED THAT PRIOR TO THE AIRPLANE IMPACTING THE BERM, THE ENGINE WAS 'MISSING.' POST ACCIDENT EXAMINATION OF THE AIRFRAME DID NOT REVEAL ANY ANOMALIES. THE COCKPIT MAGNETO SWITCH WAS SELECTED TO THE LEFT MAGNETO. THE ENGINE WAS INSPECTED AND THE LEFT MAGNETO HIGH TENSION LEAD WAS FOUND CORRODED WITH GEAR GREASE CAUSING INTERMITTENT ARCING. SPARK PLUGS ON THE NUMBER 2 AND 3 CYLINDERS WERE FOUND TO BE SOOTY AND THE SPARK PLUGS ON THE NUMBER 1 AND 4 CYLINDERS APPEARED 'NOT TO BE FIRING.' THE PILOT STATED THAT HE DID NOT LEAVE THE MAGNETO SWITCHED TO THE 'LEFT' POSITION AND THAT IT MUST HAVE BEEN MOVED DURING THE IMPACT SEQUENCE.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

OPERATIONAL FAILURE OF THE LEFT MAGNETO'S HIGH TENSION WIRING DUE TO GREASE/CORROSION, WHICH RESULTED IN A PROGRESSIVE POWER LOSS AND SUBSEQUENT FORCED LANDING.

Full narrative available

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