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Odyssey Vector II Jet on Display at AirVenture

Robbie Culver

Courtesy of Russ Emanis.

Russ Emanis is trying to fulfill a lifelong dream to build and fly an aircraft he designed. The result is the Odyssey Vector II jet prototype on display at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2022.

Emanis has given well-received presentations on composites at AirVenture in the past, and has a composites shop in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, area. The shop builds kayaks and composite products for other companies, and also has a composites material distribution segment as well as a coatings company.

It’s safe to say he is well-versed on the subject! In his own words, “There’s no learning curve here!”

The Vector II jet represents a design of his own making and is intended to eventually become a kit for sale to the experimental amateur-built community. Kits are not currently for sale, and Emanis says he will not be ready to sell them until he has an airplane to sell. He “doesn’t need deposits” to fund the project.

At AirVenture 2019, Emanis said he did not have a current project, so he sketched up the Odyssey and decided to use advanced infusion — a process where the material is bagged dry and the resin is sucked through it — to create the initial prototype. “My Facebook page blew up when everyone saw the design,” said Emanis.

He is quick to point out he has had help during the design and build phase from aerodynamic experts, engineers, electronic experts, and a group of dedicated supporters. “I can’t do it by myself.” Words we can all relate to as homebuilders!


Emanis said he wanted to power the aircraft with an electric engine, but the technology wasn’t there, so the prototype is powered by an AMT Netherlands jet engine that produces 181 pounds of thrust. The prototype is a single-seat, all-composite design with a two-seat version planned. The price for the kit is aimed for the $45,000 price point, which does not include the engine. He said AMT has been very supportive of the design and installation.

Specifications include a 25-gallon tank, a wingspan of 18 feet, and a length of 14 feet. The empty weight will be 300 pounds and the gross weight will be 700 pounds on the prototype. He said computer modeling shows a cruise around 200 mph and a stall of 55 knots. The airframe is largely complete, and Emanis intends to have it flying by fall 2022.

Emanis said his experience in the composite industry allows him to “bring the manufacturing process to the kit.” He says the parts are on par with what would come out of an autoclave.

When it comes to fulfilling a dream, many in the experimental community can understand and support the work required to do so. Russ Emanis is well on his way to achieving his lifelong dream.

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