EAA Chapter 838

We encourage and promote recreational and homebuilt aviation. Youth outreach and education programs, history, and more.

Shopping Guide

Unique Gifts for the Plane Crazy!

Our Holiday gift guide was enough fun that we’re making it a regular feature. Check here for unique gifts, whether practical, beautiful, or just plane fun…for aviation fans of all ages.

We hope your enjoy our selections! Feel free to recommend other gift ideas as well…

EAA SportAir Workshops
Irwin Self-Adjusting Wire Stripper
Black & Decker Automatic Adjustable Wrench
Subscription to WWI Aero / Skyways
Lawson C-2 Model Plans from Cleveland Models
Art-Deco Airship Teapots
Garmin G96c Portable GPS
Garmin G496 GPS with XM

US Navy Corsair Pedal Plane
Robart R780 Scale Radial Engine
Propeller Bookcase / Media Storage
Scale Airplane Weathervane Plans
Tiny R/C Helicopter
Micro R/C Airplane

EAA SportAir Workshops
The EAA SportAir Workshops are perfect for anyone considering building an airplane, or for the person who needs to develop some new skills to complete the next phase of their project. The workshops, taught by highly-experienced professionals, cover every phase of building an airplane, from deciding on a project (with hands-on experiences in composite construction, sheet metal and riveting, and wood / tube and fabric), to specialized training in areas such as welding or spray painting, to test flying your finished project! Building an RV? Check out the special course just for you!
The classes are small and your fee includes all of the necessary tools and materials. You’ll work in well-designed workshops with detailed workbooks and supporting instructional materials. Cost: Varies, check site. Register soon, as classes fill up fast. An excellent means of fighting the winter blahs!

Irwin Self-Adjusting Wire Stripper
Another great stocking stuffer, especially good for the person getting ready to tackle the panel in their homebuilt, is this Irwin Self-Adjusting Wire Stripper. Created by the same folks behind the indispensable Vise-Grip™ locking pliers, this wire stripper quickly and precisely removes insulation from 10-24 AWG wire in one effortless squeeze of their ergonomic handles.
The stripper includes adjustable stoppers for controlling the length of the core strip as well a knob for fine adjustments to the settings for small wire gauges. Includes a wire cutter as well. Cost: Around $25.00. Check your local hardware store or other retailers including Amazon, Target, Sears, or Home Depot.

Black & Decker Automatic Adjustable Wrench
Cool tools make great last-minute stocking stuffers, and the new 8" Automatic Adjustable Wrench from Black and Decker is a perfect fit. Literally. Because this adjustable wrench replaces the manual thumb-controlled controls of other wrenches (which can be a pain in tight spaces) with a one-touch button that zooms the jaws to exactly the right size instantly.
Built with typical B&D quality, the wrench is made from heat-treated hardened steel and can handle up to 220 ft-lbs of torque. The jaws will fit any nut or bolt up to 1-1/4". The mechanism is waterproof (for those plumbing jobs) and battery-operated (using 2 AAA batteries) with some 650 operation cycles available before you need replacements…this is quite reasonable for work, but this is only a few minutes for a dedicated three-year-old who decides this is the coolest toy under the tree. See their online demo. Cost: Around $30. Check your local hardware store or other retailers including Amazon, Target, Sears, or Home Depot.

WWI Aero and Skyways Subscriptions!
This is the premier organization for people interested in aviation history from the dawn of flight through the 1930s. Over 40 years ago, Leo Opdyke began World War I Aeroplanes, Inc., first publishing Aero and then adding Skyways. These two quarterly journals are repositories of all sorts of aviation arcana, from detailed plane-by-plane histories of manufacturers long past to articles on forgotten airports, exhaustive engine studies, expositions on flying, modeling, even the changing nature of history itself. Fascinating and occasionally witty, an excellent present for anyone interested in history, modeling, or even building their own full- or partial-scale aircraft. They’ll find these journals absorbing and absolutely indispensable!
Subscribe to either WWI Aero, which covers everything in aviation up to the early postwar era (1919-20) or Skyways, which covers the “Golden Age”-era…or subscribe to both! Cost: $42 / year for each journal ($84 / year for both), but if you can, add a little more for a donation. It’s worth it!
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Lawson C-2 Airliner Model Plans
Build a piece of local history: your very own scale model of the famous Lawson C-2 Airliner, the first passenger plane built for the purpose in the United States. Perhaps you’ve read about Alfred Lawson in our museum, or talked with the friendly folks from the University of Lawsonomy up at OSH, or just admired the beautiful model of the C-2 hanging in the lobby of the AirVenture museum.
Thanks to Cleveland Model & Supply (there’s a name that should bring up memories!), you only need to scrounge up some wood and a few simple tools and you’re off! Even if you don’t build the model right off, you’ll enjoy pouring over the beautiful, crisply restored plans created in Cleveland’s heyday. Be sure to explore their site for more interesting models (the webserf is currently building…albeit slooowly…a Stinson trimotor from their plans!). Cost: $16.00 - $100.00, depending upon plan scale.
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Art Deco Zeppelin Teapots!
Racing Teapots is in the UK, so your present might arrive a little late (although they are very prompt about shipping). However, these sleek airship Teapots are irresistible! Originally created to celebrate the safe record and long distance travel promised by post-war civilian Zeppelins and the fledgling British airship industry, these teapots are handcrafted from the original 1920’s-era moulds by traditional craftsmen deep in the heart of “The Potteries” in Stoke-on-Trent.
The teapots are available in several colors with platinum lustre highlights. Check out the other teapot designs as well, from oceanliners to stylized WWI tanks! Cost: £60.00 ($120.00).
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Garmin 96c GPS
With this handy little GPS, you can go from your house to your car to your Vespa to your airplane, and know where you are at every step. The GPS 96c features an ultra-bright 256-color LCD screen that you can view clearly in the brightest sunlight on the tarmac or use it to light the path when you’re lost in a cave (’cause the GPS ain’t too much of a help there!).
The 96c includes worldwide airports, VORs and NDBs, special use and controlled airspace, runway centerlines, FSS and ARTCC frequencies, along with optional maps for topo, marine, city, and more. Operates on a measley pair of AA batteries which will power the GPS for nearly 40 hours. Guys, you’ll never have to ask for directions ever again. At least until the batteries run out, so spend the extra bucks and get NiCad rechargeables. Cost: $495.00.
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Garmin 496 GPS with XM Radio
Of course, if you have the money, you won’t want to settle for anything less than the top-o’-the-line Garmin 496 GPS with XM Radio. With ten times the map detail of the older 396 on a huge, 256-color screen, you’ll drool over the near real-time updating of the map data and panel page. Additionally, you’ll find your situational awareness is enhanced by superdetailed terrain maps (including private airports), Garmin’s exclusive SmartAirspace™ and SafeTaxi™ in-depth diagrams and visual presentation techniques, and XM’s satellite datalink NEXRAD radar images, METARs, TAFs, TFRs, ground-based lightning, and more.
On the road, you’ll enjoy turn-by-turn navigation, news and weather, traffic, information on local attractions, and much, much more. Extend your XM subscription to include 170 channels of radio to fill long drives, or pull down marine maps and take to the waves. Other options include the Zaon Collision Avoidance System (an appealing idea if you’re flying in crowded airspace), additional memory, flexible mounts, and carrying cases. Cost: $2,395.00.
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F4U-1D Corsair Pedal Plane
At last, the USN is properly represented in pedal planes with this beautiful F4U-1D Corsair. From Sporty’s Wright Bros. Collection, this fine craft is only slightly different than the full-size bird. The Corsair features an impressive 3' wingspan and 4' fuselage length. The wings come complete with that distinctive inverted gullwing design to accomodate the large foot-powered paddle-bladed propeller.
Special features include chrome-plated steering wheel and windshield frame, correct Navy glossy sea blue powdercoating, and fully upholstered seating. The -1D model also provides for an increase in power over the base model when the pilot is properly fueled with chocolate chip cookies or other high-octane foods, enabling speeds approaching 4.25 mph. Includes solid rubber tires and the whole “Baa-Baa Black Sheep” mystique! Recommended for ages 3-7. Cost: $499.00 (Also available and equally cool: P40 Pedalhawk, SkyKing Pursuit, and USAAF P39)
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Radials Get Around
The Robart R780 is a precision instrument, a carefully-machined, hand-assembled 1:5 scale replica of a Jacobs radial. A working sculpture, this puppy pumps out a blistering 10 hp in a compact 7.5 lb. package. Like the full-size rumbling round engine, this chunk of engineering brillance includes full hemi heads, roller lifters, bronze valve guides, and a sweetly-tuned updraft carb. Options include a scale ring-collector for the exhaust and a genetically-engineered A&P 1/5 the size of the real thing to keep your engine running at peak power (latter option will be shipping sometime after 2030).
Sure, you could drop this in the front of your scale Cessna 195. Or stack up a bunch of these to create two-seater flying replica of the Saunders-Roe Princess. But this would also make a killer portable fan for walking around Aeroshell Square at OSH at the end of July, or the base for a motorized lazy susan (watch your fingers!). Or just a beautiful work of art to admire at your desk while working late. Yep, let’s face it: you need this engine. Price: $4,000.00. Gulp.
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Propeller Bookcase / Media Rack

Our next item is a beautiful mahogany bookcase with a propeller at each end. The props are carefully crafted representations of the real thing, down to hand-hammered brass edge-guards for the blades and a brass hub with bolts. The unit stands about 49" high with six shelves 5.5" inches deep with an 8" gap, making these perfect for storing your aviation movie collection (up to 112 DVDs or CDs). An ideal accent for any room! Available from Tailwinds.com. Price: $289.00.
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Make Realistic Airplane Weathervanes!
Garden Airways offers plans for unique, highly-realistic wooden weathervanes for the yard or garden. erfect for either the wood-worker or modelbuilder on your list, or an excellent starting point for making your own unique gifts, these plans cover a wide variety of aircraft, from the sleek Bugatti record-attempt plane hanging in the lobby of the EAA museum to the massive B-24 Liberator (Photo at left is a weathervane by customer Fred Hosage).
These plane weathervanes are full 3-D, not profiles, and appear very close to their full-scale prototypes (the website includes samples of their plans). Prices vary from $10.00 – $16.00 (depending upon complexity).
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Indoor Radio-Controlled Helicopter!
Pilot your own micro helicopter from the comfort of your own sofa. Because the distinctive appearance and diminutive size, testers quickly dubbed this critter the “The Mosquito”. Thanks to coaxial rotors, this not only one of the smallest R/C micro helicopters on the market, but also among the easiest to fly. The result is masterpiece of micro-engineering, with some 32 steps of throttle control, seven functions and a 30' range.
The Mosquito comes ready to fly except for batteries, and replacement blades are available should you decide to tease the cat and you don’t climb quick enough (ahem!). Pick up this delightful little copter at any Radio Shack or order online. Price: $69.99.
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World’s Lightest Radio-Controlled Airplane!

Divebomb the cat. Irritate the dog. Dogfight with flies. Fly sorties over co-workers’s cubicles. Teach your cat to fly it and then watch the cat irritate the dog. Teach your pig to fly it, and cash in on all sorts of “when pigs fly ” bets.
Yep. It’s all possible with the Plantraco Carbon Butterfly. This superbly-crafted model is crafted from a design by sculptor Robert Guillot. The result is a 3-gram wonder formed of carbon-fibre components with superior flexibility and strength.
The Carbon Butterfly includes a four-channel transmitter with two gimballed joysticks, one of the lightest R/C receivers in the world, and amazing 64-step actuators that weigh less that 0.25 grams.
Practice flying on the included flight simulator, and then pull out the custom aluminum briefcase that contains all of the Carbon Butterfly components and take off on a magical flight of your own home. Cat, dog, and flies not included. Contact Plantraco to order this one-of-a-kind toy. Cost: $299.
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