September 2004 -

Here's an airplane that has been literally turning heads for more than 40 years, and for good reason. When Piper launched the first PA-30 Twin Comanche in 1963, it was immediately obvious that this new airplane could do all the things that it was supposed to: it provided speed, efficiency and economy. In short order it was also discovered that this light twin was delivering a few more things that it wasn't supposed to, but we'll get to those details later.

In production from 1963 until 1972, the 2,150 Twin Comanches that came out of the Lock Haven, Pennsylvania plant were always good to look at and relatively inexpensive to operate. When Ret Thompson retired from his 37 year career with Northwest Airlines (and the North Central Airlines and Republic Airlines predecessors that he worked for), he looked around for a personal airplane to keep his aviation appetite whetted.

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