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EAA's Light Plane World
  ISSUE 5  MAY 2011  
From the Editor
Lost in France
By Dan Grunloh, Editor, Light Plane World

As the flying season gets going in full swing and pilots head out on cross-country flights, there are two tips I want to offer based on hard-earned experience. First, always be aware of your current position in case the GPS screen goes blank or your paper chart goes overboard. Secondly, always have a backup navigational aid. My education came in 2005 while flying in a map navigation contest in the wheat-growing region of central France, near Levroux. Read more

Dan Grunloh
Green Acres
The Courage to Soar
By Arty Trost
The smell of freshly cut grass greets me as I taxi for takeoff. I line up on the runway and the sound of the engine grows louder as I push the throttle forward. I'm eager with anticipation to be up in the air. I don't have a specific destination in mind; I just want to feel the wind in my face and feel the joy of a totally different perspective.  Arty Trost
As the runway falls away beneath me, so do all my daily distractions. Now there is nothing but the flying and the feeling of delight.  Read more
Light Plane News
Human-Powered Helicopter Flies
A team of graduate and undergrad students at the University of Maryland's A. James Clark School of Engineering are claiming a world record for the first human-powered helicopter flight by a woman, occurring May 12 after several failed attempts earlier that day and the day before. Human powered helicopter flies
The flight was only a few inches above the floor at the school's the Comcast Center in College Park, Maryland, but it was clearly airborne, as seen on a live webcast. Read more
Bensen Days Gyroplane Fly-in 2011
Every April for the past 38 years PRA Chapter 26 (Sunstate Wing & Rotor Club) has hosted an event called Bensen Days at an airport in Florida. It's named for Dr. Igor Bensen who helped start the homebuilt aircraft market, created the Popular Rotorcraft Association (PRA), and worked with the FAA to create the experimental and Part 103 ultralight regulations. The fly-in was held last month at Wauchula Municipal Airport in Wauchula, Florida, and included the ever popular Cluster Cluck competition. Read more Bensen Days
FlyNano Steals Show at Aero
A futuristic ultralight seaplane using the latest in carbon-fiber construction was one of the most noticed and talked about aircraft at the Aero 2011 show in Friedrichshafen, Germany, Europe's largest general aviation trade show. It hadn't yet been flown.  FlyNano
While most designers are trying to optimize the standard aircraft form, Finnish aeronautical engineer Aki Suokas is thinking out of the box with this tiny box-wing ultralight that weighs only 154 pounds with engine. Read more
PiperSport/SportCruiser Fly-In Organized
Dick Russ believes the greatest thing about having a plane to fly is that we get the opportunity to visit places we might never have considered. He has organized the first PiperSport and SportCruiser fly-in to be held in Branson, Missouri, this coming June 3 to 5.  PiperSport/SportCruiser Fly-In
A total of 142 aircraft owners have been invited to meet fellow pilots, talk about PiperSports and SportCruisers, go on a gourmet dinner cruise, as well as see the great entertainment that Branson has to offer. Read more
Pipistrel Taurus 4 Aims for GFC, Oshkosh Prizes
An eclectic electric, Pipistrel's new twin-fuselage Taurus 4 was built to win the Green Flight Challenge in early July and EAA's Electric Flight Prize at AirVenture. The design is reminiscent of the P-82 Twin Mustang and SpaceShipTwo with its two pods connected by a 5-foot spar. Read more Pipistrel Taurus
Taurus Electro G2 Pipistrel's Second Entry in EAA Electric Flight Prize Competition
One of the aircraft AirVenture 2011 attendees can witness in action during EAA's $60,000 Electric Flight Prize competition is Pipistrel's second entry - the Taurus Electro Generation 2 (G2), the first two-seat aircraft powered by an electric engine to fly in the world.  Pipistrel
It joins the company's four-place G-4 in the competition, which is sponsored by Wicks Aircraft Supply, Dynon Avionics, Aircraft Spruce & Specialty, and AeroLEDs. Read more
AERO 2011: A Few Planes You May Have Missed
AERO 2011 closed its four-day run on Saturday, April 16, with an attendance of 33,400 visitors. A total of 630 exhibitors from 29 countries set an exhibition record. Business jets, propeller GA aircraft, light aircraft and microlights, gliders, gyrocopters, and helicopters filled the 11 exhibition halls for the 19th edition of the Global Show for General Aviation. Read more AERO 2011
More Than 170 Local Events Scheduled for International Learn to Fly Day
More than 170 individual events are scheduled for EAA's second annual International Learn to Fly Day (ILTFD), set for Saturday, May 21. Tens of thousands of future aviators will have the opportunity take that first step toward discovering the fun, freedom, and accomplishment of flight at this aviation community-wide effort. Read more International Learn to Fly Day
Solo Microlight Flight from UK to Australia Underway
British paraplegic pilot Dave Sykes is flying through Egypt after the second week of his planned 11,600-nautical-mile flight from York, England, to Sydney, Australia, already having flown across France, Italy, and Greece. The auxiliary fuel tank on his 100-hp P&M Aviation Quik gives him a range of more than 500 miles. The trike has been modified with a hand control for ground steering as he does not have the use of his legs. Read more Solo microlight flight
Big Ear Stereo Plugs Can Save Your Hearing
Big Ear Inc. manufactures custom-molded in-the-ear stereo plugs especially designed for motor sports enthusiasts. A soft inner acoustic material combined with a hard outer shell provides the maximum noise attenuation available with a passive system. Big Ear stereo plugs were originally conceived for motorcycle riders but can be incorporated into many existing aviation systems as a direct replacement for the standard ear cups. They can be used to provide audio communications with any type of helmet or flying head gear. Read more Big Ears
Around the Patch
CAFE Symposium Celebrates the 'Dawn of Electric Flight'
The CAFE Electric Aircraft Symposium last weekend was packed with so many new airplanes and concepts that it was like seeing 30 college lectures in two days, as the information came fast and furious.  CAFE Symposium
In the opening remarks, CAFE President Dr. Brien Seeley dubbed the 2011 event "the dawn of electric flight," citing that there has been "exponential growth" since the first symposium in 2007. Experimenter Editor Pat Panzera was there to see it all and filed a two-part report that covers both the cool new planes that are competing in the Green Flight Challenge and promising new technologies that will reach far beyond aviation. Read Part 1 | Read Part 2
Living With a Flight Design CTLS - Two-Plus Years Down the Road
On August 20, 2008, my wife, Nancy, and I went to Sebring, Florida (SEF), and took possession of a new Flight Design CTLS (N840KN). This was our first new airplane, and it replaced a beloved and oft-flown 1967 Piper Cherokee PA-28-140. We found that these are two very different machines, but they both fulfilled our basic requirement: a comfortable, affordable, cross-country antigravity machine. Nancy and I have flown the CTLS a total of 360 hours, including three trips to San Diego, California, from our home in Pensacola, Florida. Read more CTLS
How to Tie Down Your Airplane
The storm and tornado that struck the 2011 Sun 'n Fun International Fly-In & Expo demonstrated a strange phenomenon I've witnessed in the wake of other storms at other fly-ins in the past. While no plane is going to withstand a close encounter with a tornado, it's not unusual to see some ultralights or light planes survive while heavier aircraft with the same wing area are totally destroyed. One of the reasons is fairly simple. Read more How to Tie Down Your Airplane
Radio Communications at Uncontrolled Airports
Flying at a busy uncontrolled airport, particularly one with intensive flight training, requires precise communication and constant situational awareness. The former so that you're instantly clearly understood, the latter because you'll encounter many who have no awareness of the situation. Some will be inexperienced primary students who are either ignorant or mentally overloaded, or both. Bob Wright
It's incumbent on certificated pilots to behave so as not to cause, contribute to, or to increase their confusion. Read more
Videos from the light plane world
Light Plane World Videos

Krucker Cygnet Cruises Indian Ocean
Those of us in the northern U.S. and Canada are still waiting for consistently warm weather. Our dream is the reality of one Krucker Cygnet amphibious trike that cruised the emerald green waters off the Seychelles near Madagascar.
Watch the video

Light Plane World Videos
Rans S7-S Dead Stick Ridge Soaring
Every aircraft is a glider at some point, even the ones designed to fly with engines. This RANS, in trained hands, works its way along an Idaho ridge, using ridge lift to fly without the assistance of fossil fuels. Watch the video
Submit light plane videos that you just had to watch again; and probably forwarded to your friends. Send them to
Featured Photo Gallery

Photo gallery

Bensen Days Fly-in 2011
Gyroplane pilots "spin their wings" at the annual fly-in held April 6 to 10, 2011, in honor of gyroplane designer Dr. Igor Bensen, who was the first to offer a gyroplane in kit form and among one of the first to do so in all forms of sport aviation. View the gallery

Q. What effect does old gas have on my engine? 

A. Letting fuel sit for weeks without using it will cause it to go bad. Even if gas does not go bad, it will often lose its octane with time. Read more

Powered Parachute
Q. What traffic pattern should I fly at airports?

A. Different traffic patterns at the same airport may be established for heavy aircraft, GA aircraft, gliders, and light-sport aircraft (LSA) operations. The largest factor in determining the proper traffic pattern is airspeed. Slow aircraft do not mix well with fast aircraft. Read more

Weight Shift Trikes
Q. What is a whip stall-tuck-tumble?

A WSC aircraft can get to a high pitch attitude by flying outside its limitations or flying in extreme/severe turbulence. If the wing gets to such a high pitch attitude and the AOA is high enough that the tips stall, a whip stall occurs.  Read more

Fixed-Wing Airplane
Q. Why do students practice steep turns?

A. The objective of the maneuver is to develop the smoothness, coordination, orientation, division of attention, and control techniques necessary for the execution of maximum performance turns when the airplane is near its performance limits. Smoothness of control use, coordination, and accuracy of execution are the important features of this maneuver. Read more

Q. Both gyroplanes and helicopters are rotorcraft; how are they different?

A. A fundamental difference between helicopters and gyroplanes is that in powered flight, a gyroplane rotor system operates in autorotation. This means the rotor spins freely as a result of air flowing up through the blades, rather than using engine power to turn the blades and draw air from above.  Read more

From the archives
The Skycycle - Everyman's Motorcycle of the Air?
July 1996
From the Archives
Fifty years after it was conceived, Carlson Aircraft built a full-scale replica of the single-place Piper PA-8 that was first developed at the end of World War II but never produced. It was thought at the time it might become the motorcycle of the air. Read the article
Flying With Your iPad: Apps, Accessories, Tips, and Tricks

Tuesday, May 24: WWII Fighters - A Performance Comparison with Sid Siddiqi

Wednesday, June 1, at 8 p.m.: Troubleshooting Engine Problems (Savvy #13) with Mike Busch

Wednesday June 8: Starting an EAA Chapter - as Easy as 1-2-3! with Brenda Anderson

Wednesday, June 15: Beginning Aerobatics with Gordon Penner

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

EAA gratefully acknowledges the support of Aircraft Spruce and Specialty Co. for its generous sponsorship of the webinar programs.

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