EAA Experimenter - EAA's Homebuilders e-Newsletter
Feature headline
Reno 2010: Phantom Does it Again

The Elippse propeller proves a winner once more
Paul Lipps has been featured in past issues of Experimenter. His unusual propeller designs are becoming as legendary as they are controversial. Biplane builder and Reno racer Tom Aberle has become quite a believer as Paul's propeller designs have allowed him to bolt-on an almost embarrassing amount of additional speed, and this year's numbers at the Reno National Championship Air Races are no exception.

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Hints for Homebuilders
Magnetic Saw Guide
Jim Martin demonstrates the construction of a magnetic saw guide. Jim is an AirVenture Workshop instructor from Chapter 93 in Madison, WI.
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Affordability and Fruit
Comparisons need to be apples to apples

I recently read an e-mail presented to a Yahoo! group that is dedicated to high-horsepower V8 automobile conversions. The writer was concerned that the cost of this alternative solution to expensive certified engines was getting out of hand, reducing or eliminating the sweetness of using the alternative engine. He potentially surmised that he might as well just go with a certified engine. I'd like to answer his letter in my editorial this month.
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Pat Panzera

Passing the Torch: Looking Back at the 1989 EAA Presidential Transition 
In 1989 Paul Poberezny handed the reigns of EAA to his son Tom after 37 years leading the organization. During that transition both father and son wrote side-by-side columns in Sport Aviation that addressed the change at the top. Paul spoke of pride in his son Tom who rose in EAA from the ground up (his first EAA job was grounds and building maintenance) to carry the family business forward. Tom talked about the character of EAA and how there may, overtime, be a change in the style of leadership but not the content. With new EAA President Rod Hightower the EAA board sought a new leader that, like in 1989, possessed the EAA DNA.
Read the story

Tom and Paul Poberezny

Certification Inspection: Preparedness Is Next to ...

Here in Wisconsin the designated airworthiness representative (DAR) business had been pretty slow all summer. I performed a couple of airworthiness inspections in the spring, then things got quiet on the certification front. This isn't a bad thing for me, since summer is a pretty busy time at EAA. But lately the applications have started coming in again. I've performed three certifications in the past few weeks, and I have three or four more coming up in the near future. All of these recent inspections have gone quite well. The applicants were well prepared and the aircraft were top quality, all of which makes the inspection process simple and straightforward. That's not always the case.
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Joe Norris

Flying the Proteus
An afternoon with Mike Melvill

Marc J. Zeitlin is a well-known asset to the canard community, who built from scratch and recently restored his own Cozy Mark IV. Marc is one of the fortunate few who have found a home at Scaled Composites and is humble enough to have recently said, "I had no expectations coming out here [to work at Scaled.] Had I been put to work building mundane pods for the rest of my career, I'd have been good with that. The opportunity to help design aspects of SpaceShipTwo/WhiteKnightTwo and head RM2 (RocketMotorTwo program, as well as the opportunities to fly in WK2 and Proteus, have been unexpected surprises, and I view them as gravy. I'm very thankful for the chances Scaled has afforded me in a field I love, and the fact that they think that I'm making a useful contribution in those areas."

A Proteus aircraft flies over Southern California, September 30, 2006, carrying the Global Hawk variant of the Multi-Platform Radar Technology Insertion Program radar. Proteus is a high-altitude aircraft similar in size to Global Hawk. (U.S. Air Force photo)
Marc recently had the unique opportunity to fly right-seat with Mike Melvill in Proteus, either one being remarkable in itself. Marc shares this experience with us. Read more

Facetmobile Designer Barnaby Wainfan's "Eyeball" Helps Win $5M X Prize
Crossover technology is a wonderful thing. Far too often, various groups of enthusiasts seem to work in a vacuum, only looking at the technology or technologists at hand, in and around their own group. 
X Prize
For example, you don't normally see dirt bike riders looking through the Jeg's catalog for performance-enhancing ideas, personal watercraft owners taking tips from snowboard builders, or bicycle riders looking for the next go-fast idea at the local bowling alley's pro shop. But odds are really good that if one were to look outside the comfort of the familiar, huge advancements can be made. One small example would be to look where aviation has gone since someone took fiberglass boat building techniques into design consideration. 

The Progressive Automotive X Prize is an automobile efficiency competition, and winning the $5 million "Mainstream Class" took a cross between automobile and aviation technologies, with our own Barnaby Wainfan's aerodynamic skills making a huge impact. Read more | Listen to the interview

Reno 2010: Relentless Loses Prop in Flight
Is there something we can learn?

You might already have read EAA's Reno National Championship Air Races report by Tim Kern, but if you didn't, you might want to read it before continuing. 

During a qualifying session on Tuesday, September 14, the propeller departed Relentless (Nemesis NXT, designed and developed by legendary air racer Jon Sharp) with its builder, Kevin Eldredge, at the stick. A 400 mph pull-up exchanged airspeed for altitude, and an uneventful, safe landing was executed. That is if you consider a small fire from oil being spewed on a hot turbo as being uneventful. The fire was quickly extinguished by the ground crew at Reno. Read more


Corvair College #18 in Livermore, CA - KLVK

Ten years ago, Corvair engine conversion guru William Wynne opened his hangar doors to all who would come for a weekend of learning. Fellow Corvair enthusiasts from around the United States and Canada made the trek to Daytona Beach, Florida, to learn the nuances of disassembly and reconstruction of this vintage automobile conversion. The event was dubbed "Corvair College." To date, 17 such colleges have taken place, and in almost every case, the highlight of the event was the running of a spankin' new engine that was built during the event. Starting today, the 18th college will take place in a little burg just east of San Francisco. Read more
Corvair College
The gang from Corvair College #13, January 2009.

This month's unique Mystery Plane was submitted by Anthony J. Liberatore. The aircraft is a two-place, side-by-side, plans-built experimental. Designed around VW engine conversions, the plane utilizes a wood wing with a steel-tube, fabric-covered fuselage. Getting in the cockpit takes some forethought, but once seated, two full-sized adults fit rather comfortably. This taildragger uses bungee cords under the seats much like a Taylorcraft to reduce parasite drag. If you look at the advertised specifications in this article, you'll notice that the Cygnet potentially could be flown in the light-sport aircraft category. Read more

Remember to send your Mystery Plane submission to Pat Panzera.

Mystery plane

EAA Devotes Entire Newsletter to the Light Plane World
We thank you each month for clicking on the Experimenter survey link and sharing your thoughts. Each month we get a few comments asking for more coverage of ultralight and LSA aircraft. For almost a year, EAA has been publishing the online newsletter Light Plane World, which is dedicated to those passionate about ultralights and light-sport aircraft. Experimenter has not stopped featuring ultralights and LSAs, but we invite you to subscribe to this new publication that delves deep into the aircraft, people, and culture of the Light Plane World. View the latest issue

Light Plane World

New Polish Aircraft Appears at Midwest LSA Expo
Sometimes, we just get lucky…though the second annual Midwest LSA Expo and the first Mid-America Alternate Engine Fly-In were both scheduled for the same weekend, they were each three-day events - and the dates overlapped. So, since the events were just 70 miles apart (in Mt Vernon, Illinois, and Paducah, Kentucky, respectively), attending both was possible.
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New Polish Aircraft

Sonex's AeroVee Turbo-Powered Waiex Makes First Flight
The Sonex's turbo-powered Waiex began flight testing last week (September 3) with impressive early results according to Sonex's Mark Schaible. Using its AeroVee engine, Sonex's Hornets' Nest Research and Development (R&D) fitted a free-floating turbocharger with a fixed wastegate to the engine with the goal of increasing output to 100 hp. The initial test flights, flown by Sonex builder and R&D volunteer Drew Waterworth, showed a significant increase in cruise and climb performance. Schaible says they hope the new turbo system will provide a comparable alternative to the more powerful 120-hp Jabiru engine while staying sport pilot compliant.
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Electric Four-Motor Cri-Cri Makes First Flight
The all-electric Cri-Cri, the first-ever four-motor aerobatic plane, made its official maiden flight at Le Bourget airport near Paris last week (September 3). The mid-morning flight went smoothly, all systems performed well, and the pilot reported excellent maneuverability. While it was a great flight, it was quite short as the Cri-Cri returned for landing after seven minutes. The Cri-Cri is designed to cruise for 30 minutes at 59 knots, reach aerobatic speeds of 135 knots, and climb at 1,000 feet per minute. Read more

Pilot Reminder: Watch Out for Pop-Up TFRS
With the fall elections approaching in November, the likelihood of temporary flight restrictions (TFRs) being issued for VIP appearances on very short notice during the campaign season is on the rise. FAA and TSA officials are urging general aviation pilots to be ever vigilant and always aware of TFRs when they fly. EAA reminds pilots to check the NOTAMs before takeoff and make sure all intended flight paths steer well clear of all restricted airspace. You can check for TFRs on the EAA Flight Planner as well as during FAA Flight Service and DUAT/DUATS briefings.

Dick Rutan Donates Bust to EAA Museum
National Aviation Hall of Famer Dick Rutan flew his Berkut N268DK into Oshkosh's Wittman Regional Airport Thursday to drop off a special donation for EAA's AirVenture Museum: a bronze bust of himself. It will become a part of the museum's large Rutan exhibit. He arrived in the early afternoon, with the 80-lb sculpture in tow, from the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio, where he gave a speech the previous evening, "Recalling the MISTY Years," about his "Misty" combat tour in Vietnam. Read more
Dick Rutan

McClellan Eager to Begin
Longtime aviation writer and editor Mac McClellan, best known for his years as editor at FLYING magazine, is eager to get started with his contributions to EAA's publications and online communications. He'll begin his online contributions in October, with his renowned "Left Seat" column making its first appearance in November's Sport Aviation. This week, McClellan talks with EAA's Dick Knapinski about coming to EAA, what readers can expect from him, and the amazing technology breakthroughs pilots have seen over the past decade. Listen to the interview

Hightower Welcomes McClellan to EAA Publications
In addition, EAA president/CEO Rod Hightower talks about welcoming McClellan to EAA’s stable of talented aviation writers and what unique perspectives he’ll bring to EAA members. Watch the interview

Mac McClellan
Got a question? Send it to us at.
Whether you're building, restoring, or just an enthusiast. we want to know what has you stumped.

Q. I own a homebuilt airplane that I didn't build. A friend who is an airframe and powerplant (A&P) mechanic is performing the condition inspection for me, and he asked for the equipment list. I told him that I'm not required to have one. He thinks I'm supposed to have an equipment list, though. Who is correct?

A. There's no regulatory requirement for an equipment list on an experimental aircraft. In fact, there's no requirement for a flight manual or any other document other than the FAA-issued operating limitations. The FAA (and the EAA) recommends that builders/owners of experimental aircraft develop flight manuals and equipment lists for their aircraft as a "best practice," but they aren't required documents. Read more | Read more Q&As

Confused by a strange aeronautical term? EAA's online Aviation Glossary can help.

FRISE AILERON - A type of aileron that has a beveled or contoured leading edge projecting beyond its inset hinges. When the trailing edge is lowered, it forms an extension of the wing surface; when raised, its nose protrudes below the wing surface, protruding into the airflow increasing drag.  More glossary terms

Experimenter, March 1957
The Mong Sport
By Ralph E. Mong

One of the featured articles in this month's Experimenter casually mentions the Mong Sport biplane, one which has been highly modified for competition. For race or fun, the Mong is perhaps one of the least expensive biplanes that can be built, if only because of its lack of expensive flying wires. Mong chose to use a single lift strut rather than the traditional cross of wires to complete the structural truss of the wings. There's nothing in the airplane that can't be built by the average builder with a bench grinder and a welding torch, according to Budd Davisson's 2000 report, "Biplanes You Can Build."
Read the 1957 article

From the Archives


Southwest Airlines: The Making of Florida OneSouthwest Airlines: The Making of Florida One
If only building a homebuilt were this easy. Watch a time-lapse video of the making of Southwest Airlines newest specialty 737, Florida One.
Designing and Flying the Rutan DefiantDesigning and Flying the Rutan Defiant
Here's some historic footage of Burt Rutan designing his Defiant, including Dick Rutan flying it in, around, and through the Tehachapi Mountains in California (near Mojave), with a few loops, rolls, and wingovers tossed in for good measure. Watch video
Sailplane Disintegrates During RoutineSailplane Disintegrates During Routine
At Coupe Icare 2010, a sailplane disintegrates in flight with one of its departed wings passing within a few hundred meters of a powered parachute. Thank goodness for the ballistic chute. Watch video

Encore for Popular Webinar on 2-stroke Engines

Brian Carpenter gave his talk on 2-stroke engines last month; however, due to its popularity, we are bringing him back to give it again, just in case you missed it. Brian teaches the Repairman inspection and maintenance courses for airplane, weight shift, and powered parachute. Brian is a Sport Pilot Examiner, a CFII, an A & P mechanic with an inspection authorization, and an EAA Technical Counselor. He has built many experimental and ultralight aircraft and is the designer and builder of the Ranger.

All webinars begin at 7 p.m. CDT. To find out more about upcoming EAA Webinars and to register, visit the webinars page.

Mazda and Jabiru Engine Installations Break Convention

When it comes to homebuilts and LSAs, it's not a just a Rotax and Lycoming world anymore. Tim Kern found examples of four- and six-cylinder Jabiru installations in a Rans S-19 and a Rainbow Aircraft "Cheetah" LSA at the Midwest LSA Fly-in in Mount Vernon, Illinois, last month. Not too far away in Paducah, Kentucky, at the Alternative Engine Fly-in, Kern discovered Sam Hodges' wonderful installation of a Mazda conversion in an RV-7A. If you want to know more about Mazda conversions, see Tim's article in the October issue of Sport Aviation.
View the gallery
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The Homebuilders Corner message forum at Oshkosh365 is as active as ever. Have a look at the list below and follow the links to read the actual questions and discussion topics.
Oshkosh 365

Can You Help?

Interesting Discussions

Experimental Aircraft Transition Training
Recently the FAA began circulating a draft Advisory Circular that offers guidance for pilots who have never flown an experimental aircraft or a specific type of experimental aircraft.

Q.  Whether you have recently purchased an experimental category aircraft or are in the process of building one, are you planning to receive some transition training for that aircraft?

Poll - Vote Now!

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