Switch Display

Michael Arnell's Ercoupe

  • Purchase of N99238 on Dec 15, 1946

    Purchase of N99238 on Dec 15, 1946

    Mr. Arnell (then named Balsamo) purchased a 1946 Ercoupe Model 415C for $2,700 in December of 1946, the day after his 28th birthday. The registration number was N99238, serial number 1861. The airplane was likely used, since my Ercoupe is S/N 3304 and it was built in September of 1946.

  • Mr. Arnell with N99238

    Mr. Arnell with N99238

    The airplane is bare aluminum with a picture of Bugs Bunny on the fuselage. "HOTSHOT" is written on one side of the image and "BUGS" on the other.

  • Michael Arnell's Pilot's License

    Michael Arnell's Pilot's License

    It appears that Mr. Arnell bought his Ercoupe before he received his pilot's license since this license first issued in December of 1947, over a year after he purchased his Ercoupe. I am guessing he may have requested this replacement license when he changed his name from Balsamo to Arnell.

  • Six Gallons of Gas - $1.80

    Six Gallons of Gas - $1.80

    While this looks like a great deal, one inflation calculator I used computed this as $25.42 in today's dollars. That equals $4.24/gallon, good but not as good a it looks at first glance. Another receipt shows a quart of oil cost $0.35 in 1949.

  • Mr. Arnell in N99238

    Mr. Arnell in N99238

    This appears to be an early image since the airplane is still bare aluminium. In later images the airplane received a fancy paint job.

  • N99238 in 1951

    N99238 in 1951

    Here is N99238 with its new paint job. The back of the picture states that the picture was printed the "Week of Nov 19, 1951."

  • Mr. Arnell and N99238 with New Paint

    Mr. Arnell and N99238 with New Paint

  • N99238 Close Up

    N99238 Close Up

    Notice that Mr. Arnell kept a picture of Bugs Bunny on the repainted airplane.

  • Nice Shot of the Fancy Paint Job on N99238

    Nice Shot of the Fancy Paint Job on N99238

  • Close Up of Damage to N99238

    Close Up of Damage to N99238

    These photos show damage to N99238's left aileron and rudder. It looks like someone taxied into it it while it was tied down.

  • One Hour Airplane Rental - $17

    One Hour Airplane Rental - $17

    This receipt shows that Mr. Arnell paid $17.00 for one hour of solo time in October of 1964. Interesting, there is another receipt for one hour of rental on March 1, 1971, seven years later, for only one dollar more at $18 per hour.

  • Michael Arnell, 94, Jeweler, Pilot

    Michael Arnell, 94, Jeweler, Pilot

    Michael N. Arnell, formerly of Ridgefield and Norwalk, died in Las Vegas, Nev. after a brief illness. He was 94. Mr. Arnell, who lived in Ridgefield from 1964 until 1982, was a master jeweler and enjoyed snow skiing, boating and was a private pilot. He is survived by his wife, Patricia Arnell of Las Vegas; his sons Alan Arnell (wife Susan) of New Milford, James Karns of Danbury, and Matthew Arnell of Florida; grandsons Miles Arnell and Matthew Arnell. There will be no local service. Interment will be in Cleveland, Ohio. In lieu of flowers -the family requests a contribution be made to any Alzheimer’s research organization.

Click on thumbnail to see full-size image. Move mouse over full-size image to see slideshow navigation controls.

Brian Hagstrom from Las Vegas sent me this treasure-trove of material about Michael N. Arnell's Ercoupe courtesy of Arnell's wife, Patricia.

I did not get any written information with this material but from what I can piece together, Michael Arnell was born Michael Balsamo on December 14, 1918. He bought a used Ercoupe, N99238, the day after his 28th birthday and used it to get his private license on December 17, 1947.

Mr. Arnell trained with Skyservice at Staten Island Airport, NY. There is a snippet of a newspaper article that appears to say that he was soloed by instructor Bob Frank after a bit more than five hours of instruction.

Michael Arnell passed away on September 12, 2013, at the age of 94.

N99238 is currently registered to Richard Urash of Aericus, GA.