That's me and Starship NC-51 (N514RS) owner Robert Scherer at Oshkosh

That's me and Starship NC-51 (N514RS) owner Robert Scherer at Oshkosh

The quest continues for getting a flight on a Beechcraft Starship. As stated before, I have been working with Robert Scherer who is the owner of Starship NC-51. When I was at Oshkosh a bit over a week ago, I knew he was going to be there so we arranged to meet.

His Starship wasn’t parked at any of the main display areas, but way on the other side of the field in a hangar. Robert was kind enough to take me over to have a look. How could I say no?

Robert is a true aviation enthusiast and he knows what a rare treat he has and he loves sharing it with other airplane lovers. I felt like a kid going to Disneyland heading over to see the Starship in person. I had already seen amazing planes from around the world at Oshkosh, but this one got me the most excited.

Before we headed over, Robert got word that someone had made his Starship into a paper model. We tracked it down and it is obvious someone spent a lot of work re-creating Robert’s Starship.

Even when the Starship was tucked away in the corner of the hangar, she was beautiful. Luckily I had blog reader, San Jose Airport Commissioner and aviation enthusiast, Ian Kluft there with me to help take some photos. Robert was extremely patient and understanding as we took our time to get inside the cabin and take photos.

Her exterior and interior still look futuristic in my opinion. You can easily tell the plane is something different, something special. We weren’t able to do a flight, but Robert assures me it will happen. We are still looking to fly from Aspen, CO over to Orange, CA and hope to do it in the next month or so.

Robert had the special honor of flying Burt Rutan (the man who designed the Starship and SpaceshipOne, Voyager and many others) from Mojave to Oshkosh, as he has over the past few years. NC-51 is the only Starship that Burt has flown in and what a great way to arrive to Oshkosh.

I can’t wait to listen to those engines start up and fly in an airplane that has helped inspire me since I was a kid!

Check out the other photos Ian and I took of N514RS at Oshkosh

My Quest to Ride on a Beechcraft Starship:

David is the Editor-in-Chief & Founder of AirlineReporter. He has written, consulted, and presented on multiple topics relating to airlines and travel since 2008. He has been quoted and written for a number of news organizations, including BBC, CNN, NBC News, Bloomberg, and others. He is passionate about sharing the complexities, the benefits, and the fun stuff of the airline business. Email me:
Taking a Look at an Airline Lounge PART 1: The Background

Love the pics! I specially love the bunny suit :-)

Did I miss a bunny suit somewhere? :)


There’s a little Intel doll, and the doll is wearing a bunny suit. The doll is in the cockpit. A bunny suit is what the techs that make computer chips wear. Here’s a video of the bunny suit in action.

Oh right! I didn’t notice that… I was a bit distracted :).


Nice shots. I was over in that hanger area doing some filming for EAA Video and saw her inside the hanger. It is always good to see a Starship. I hope you can get up in her some day. Really looks great still. Really was ahead of her time.

Thanks for posting them.

(I too would love to fly in one)

Hey Sam!

I see in your photos you have taken shots of SpaceShipOne and WhiteKnight…you get to take any when NC-51 was running spot plane?


No, I did not sorry.
(darn website did not look like it worked right)

Doctor Smith

So So So Cool – That glass cockpit still looks good all of these years later – that’s such a ground breaking design

No, I did not sorry.

So very cool! I can’t wait to see videos in flight. Be sure to do LOTS of audio–I want to hear those engines!

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