A few years back, my parents bought a beautiful tiled wood stove for their home. The first year, they bought a light truckload of wood. But Dad found buying wood to be a pricey way to feed the stove. Being retired with spare time on his hands and the desire for physical work, he decided to cut his own firewood.
At first, he got permission from the local government to clear out wood from a lot close to my parents’ home where trees had been cut down to thin the forest. Then Mom and Dad set out to purchase a small wooded lot. In the end, they purchased an 11-acre property with three buildings and a lake.
Why am I telling this story? Perhaps you can relate to a similar story of how the decision to buy one thing can lead to other, much bigger purchases. A new TV could lead to a new home audio system, which would require new furniture for the living room, and then perhaps even a new house. For me, the story has to do with avionics.
When I bought my 1974 Mooney M20C, which I named Manny, I knew some upgrades would be required. The first and most serious need was a new transponder. Controllers would often tell me one of my digits was indicating something other than what was displayed on my analog Narco transponder. The issue was always resolved by twisting the errant knob around full circle. However, when it came time for the transponder check, the ancient unit came out flawed, and I spent nearly $1,000 fixing it. Since Narco has been out of business for years, it has become increasingly difficult to find someone willing to work on the equipment, and it is equally if not more difficult to find replacement parts. It was time for a change.