NTSB Identification: ERA10LA458
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, August 31, 2010 in Eagles Mere, PA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/13/2011
Aircraft: BIRD CK, registration: N765N
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

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

The antique biplane had recently undergone a complete restoration, including an overhaul of the engine. The accident flight was one of the first flights since the restoration was completed. After performing a preflight inspection, the pilot departed from the runway and during the takeoff climb, the engine "coughed," several times. The pilot checked the engine instruments and evaluated the engine condition, while remaining in the traffic pattern. After noticing no anomalies with the engine instruments, the pilot decided to fly to another airport, about 4 miles away. He landed uneventfully and taxied back for departure. Upon takeoff, as the airplane was about 3/4 down the runway, and at an altitude of about 150 feet, the engine lost power completely. The pilot was unable to land straight ahead due to trees and terrain, and decided to return to the airport. During the turn, the airplane stalled, and impacted the ground. Examination of the airplane revealed that during the restoration, the inside of the fuel tank was coated with an FAA approved product specifically designed for sealing older fuel tanks. This coating peeled off in large sheets and collected in the sump of the tank, blocking the fuel supply to the carburetor.

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

The loss of engine power due to fuel starvation as a result of degradation of the fuel tank coating which blocked the fuel supply.

Full narrative available

Index for Aug2010 | Index of months