On November 24, 1997, at 1700 central standard time (cst), a Luscombe 8A, N71329, operated by a private pilot, sustained substantial damage when during cruise flight, the airplane's engine lost power. The airplane subsequently impacted the terrain. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The personal flight was being conducted under 14 CFR part 91. No flight plan was on file. The pilot and passenger on board received minor injuries. The local flight originated at Lincoln, Nebraska, at 1645 cst.

In his written statement, the pilot said that he had recently taken off and was heading south bound at 600 feet above ground level, when the airplane's engine went to idle power. The pilot worked the throttle back and forth, but could not get any power from the engine. The pilot maneuvered the airplane so as to land in a corn field. The airplane "stalled above the ground," and impacted in the field.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector who examined the airplane at the accident site, found the airplane resting upright in a field. The forward left side of the fuselage and cowling were crushed in and rearward. The firewall was buckled and dented. One propeller blade was bent back against the cowling. The main landing gear was broken aft. The outboard four feet of the left wing was bent aft. The left wing main spar was broken 3 feet inboard of the wing tip. The left side of the fuselage from the cabin aft to the empennage showed heavy skin wrinkling. Flight control continuity was confirmed. No anomalies were found with the engine. Examination of the throttle control showed that the swag ball on the throttle linkage had come off, leaving the throttle control at a low power setting.

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