On May 18, 1996, at 1615 eastern daylight time, a McCall, a home-built airplane, N111MC, was substantially damaged during a forced landing near Steamburg, New York. The private pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the personal flight that originated at Mayville, New York, about 1600. No flight plan had been filed for the flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

In the NTSB Form 6120.1/2, the pilot stated that he purchased the airplane on May 18, 1996, in Mayville, New York. He further stated:

"...After inspecting the airplane, changing the oil, draining the old gas, and fueling the aircraft [autofuel], I did some fast taxing...I departed at 1600. After flying around the airport for 10 minutes...I proceeded to Dansville. Ten minutes into the cross-country...the engine started to misfire. I was at approximately 3,000 feet and immediately turned toward a large grass field. The power delivered by the engine declined very rapidly. The glide ratio proved to be worse than I thought. The large field quickly became out of gliding distance. I was forced to land the airplane in a smaller plowed field...After clearing the trees, I pushed the nose over to gain airspeed, but there was not sufficient altitude to do so...I flared the airplane. The airplane, in a level attitude struck the ground hard..."

Examination of the wreckage by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Inspector revealed two spark plugs were loose and no fuel was found in the lines, pump, or filter. An aluminum fuel line fitting at the fuel filter was found "very loose." The inspector's report stated, "The position of the fuel tank and the fuel pump was such that when the fuel level in the tank got below the fuel pump it would probably suck air instead of fuel, causing the engine to quit."

The airplane's last annual inspection occurred during July 1993, and the airplane had been flown about 6 hours since the last annual inspection. A ferry permit had not been issued for the flight.

The pilot was not a certificated FAA Airframe and Power Plant mechanic. The pilot's total powered airplane experience was about 110 hours in single engine airplanes. The pilot's total flight experience during the previous 90 days, was 2 hours flown in gliders, and less than 30 minutes in make and model.

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