Mar 16th

Should Trike wings have ratings just like PPG wings?

By Rizwan Bukhari

 

Hi all,

While we discuss the reason behind John Farmer's accident. Tony brought up a point that I have also discussed in the past. And I would like to know your opinion on that.

As you all may know that Paragliding and Powered Paragliding wings have ratings. And despite the fact that as far FAA is concerned sports like Powered Paragliding are under FAR 103 rules, so their is no license required. 

However because the wings have ratings, it helps a new comer and even experienced pilot to make the wing purchase decision.

How do you as pilots feel about a wing rating system? 

Is it practical?

Do you think it will help Trike pilots?

What challenges do you see in implementing such a system?

Some while ago we had a blog discussing if Spiral recovery should be part of Practice Standard Maneuvers and with Trike pilots' input we were able to make Spiral Recovery a part of Practical Standard Maneuvers.

My hope with this blog is to see if we could reach a consensus on this topic. So we could do take a practical measure and hopefuly no more lives are lost.

Regards,

 

Rizwan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mar 12th

John Farmer died in a Trike crash

By Rizwan Bukhari

http://www.dailycommercial.com/news/20180226/authorities-id-pilot-killed-in-ultralight-crash-as-orlando-man

 

 

EUSTIS – Authorities on Monday identified the pilot of an ultralight that crashed while approaching Eustis Airport Sunday morning.

According to a report released Monday, a witness said John Farmer of Orlando had been doing touch-and-go’s on the airport runway with his red and white Trike ultralight just after 8 a.m. Sunday and then flew south away from the air strip. The witness said Farmer made a final approach back to the airport but crashed beyond the tree line.

The witness, Russell Smith, rushed to the scene and found the plane overturned on top of Farmer. He and a worshiper from a nearby church lifted the plane off him.

Smith said he cut the pilot out of his harness and began doing CPR. A Lake County Sheriff’s deputy arrived at the scene and said it was clear Farmer was dead. Farmer was 47.

“I’ve been through a few of these before,” Smith said. “I knew he was right but I’m trained to do CPR until paramedics get on the scene.”

The Federal Aviation Administration, which was called in to investigate, has identified the plane as a XT-912 Tundra Arrow Ultralight .

 

Smith said while he didn’t see the crash, he never heard the engine cut out. He speculated that the aircraft stalled, meaning that the fabric wings weren’t getting enough lift even if the engine was still running. That can happen with any aircraft, he said, but with an ultralight flying so low to the ground, there is little time to recover from a stall and the result can be fatal.

“If you don’t have lift and gravity is pulling you down, then you’re basically going 150 miles an hour into the ground,” he said.

Smith also said the drafts can be tricky around that airport, especially around the tree line.

 

 

 

Mar 6th

US Air Force Uses Trikes to represent Ultralights in Test Program

By Paul Hamilton

Flying trikes out of Mojave Air and Space airport for US Air Force out of Edwards Air Force Base Test Pilot School for the next week. We fly sorties with precision courses, altitudes and throttle settings. The USAF relates trikes as a typical Ultralight type aircraft. WE HAVE COME A LONG WAYS.

They are trying to track us so drones can detect our audio signature as well as all sorts of helicopters, jets, twins, and typical cessnas. Who knows what else they will be doing.

Flying in Edwards Air Force Base Restriced R-2515 . Very busy and no ATC air trafic seperation. They say we have our own space but I am seeing different aircraft with my ADS-B in but they disapear...... Hmmmmmm.

Day 1. Took Captain USAF Test Pilot School for 2 hour sortie this morning. She mentioned that it was nice to have an auto pilot in the trike - voice actuated, the trike went wherever she told it at a precise courses, turn points, throttle setting and altitude.I was the human auto pilot.

 

 

Mar 6th

Fuel Lines on a Rotax 503

By Garrett Porter

Yesterday I went out to my hangar after work, and during my preflight inspection, I found that my fuel line bypassing the bulb hand pump was completely broken in several spots and rock hard (this is the line between the fuel tank and the pulse driven fuel pump).  I am posting about it because it seems to have gone from functioning to obliterated in a very short time period.  I understand that fuel lines have a 5 year lifetime but I have also read folks recommending to change them every year, and even others saying that they go beyond 5 years before replacement.  I have already ordered a new hose to replace the failed one but I noticed that three options are out there.  Does anyone know of any reason to go with one over the other, other than price? Also, has anyone had an issues with their fuel lines or experienced anything similar? 

1. https://www.cps-parts.com/catalog/eppages/rotaxhosereplace.php?clickkey=3763

(This is the hose I originally bought and it is not actually fuel line)

CPS Hose

2. http://www.aircraftspruce.com/pages/ap/fuel_line/bingfuel.php

Bing Hose

3. http://www.aircraftspruce.com/pages/ap/fuel_line/fuelline.php

Polyurethane Hose

 

Here are some photos of the broken line on the aircraft:

 

 

A little background: This aircraft is a Pegasus with a Rotax 503 so the line interacts with fuel (including alcohol), oil, and air.  I live in Truckee, CA at 6,000' elevation where the Winter days are around freezing temp and Summer days see large temperature fluctuations between daytime and nighttime. I fly about twice a week typically.  I do not know how long it has been since this line was installed.

Feb 26th

Updated Weight-Shift Control Aircraft Flying Handbook printed copy

By Paul Hamilton

Paul Hamilton/Adventure Productions just updated the FAA Weight-Shift Control Aircraft Flying handbook to include the Spiral Recovery maneuver

Weight-Shift-Control-Flying-Handbook-FAA-H-8082-5-Paul-Hamilton-SPORT-AVIATION-CENTER.jpg

Feb 19th

Private Pilot License in Trike Flying

By Rizwan Bukhari

 

Hi all,

 

I am curious about the benefits of doing a Private Pilot License for Weight Shift Control flying.

It seems, it gives you the priviledges of Private Pilot License, such as flying at night (with proper training and endorsements), flying above 10,000 feet, flying in Class B, flying out of the country etc.

I guess my question is this a goal worth pursuing? What if the purpose was to just increase your knowledge only? What are the pros and cons of PPL -WSC? How many of you have done your Private Pilot with weight shift control and would you recommend others to do that?

 

You could inbox me or email at rizzywizzy@yahoo.com

 

Regards,

 

Riz

Jan 30th

The Revolt is Compelling

By Glade Montgomery

I was at a trade convention in St. Petersburg, Florida last week.  That city is, of course, not a long distance from Zephyrhills, home to Evolution.  Perhaps I should know better than to use my attendance at a nearby trade convention as excuse to go see Larry Mednick.  That's what happened to me, I believe, six years ago -- and, wouldn't you know it -- I thereafter became a very happy Revo owner. 

Anyhow, I was on this occasion interested in seeing the new Rev and new Revolt.  It was a little more than a one-hour drive from where I was attending to business duties, and Larry and his crew warmly welcomed me (I love those people). 

In regard to those new aircraft, WOW!

The Revolt in particular looks like a mega, super-off-road buggy, ready for any terrain you might wish to attack.  Yet, it flies!  Not only does it fly, it flys beautifully, and with a large envelope of speeds.  The feeling in either seat is like nothing else.   The passenger in back so elevated -- and with his/her own windshield -- it's crazy.  No more straining to look over or around the pilot's helmet (and, as pilot, no more sitting in your passenger's crotch). 

All the innovations Larry has built into this thing are astounding. 

I want one. 

No matter how much I love my Revo, I may make a switch.  I was thinking of getting a 3-axis plane, anyway, for when I want to go places, so having a slower trike will not be a problem.  In fact, it will be nicer to fly alongside my triker buddies, for with my Revo flying at its slowest I always have to do an occasional circle to get behind them again. 

If someone wants to buy my Revo at a price that lets me purchase a fully-loaded Revolt at equal price, I just may go for it. 

Dec 31st

Father Goose Bill Lishman passed away

By Rizwan Bukhari

 

Most of us have seen the movie "Fly Away Home". That movie is based on Bill Lishman and his revolutionary work with helping birds migrate using Ultralight airplanes.

 

Bill Lishman passed away Dec 30th, 2017. May he rest in peace.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Lishman

 

 

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Dec 1st

Why would you fly a lawn chair with a kite over your head? This is a question a get all the time and here is my answer.

By Paul Hamilton

 

Just yesterday I was in my hanger and the hanger next door had THE world famous P51 crew there to get this vintage P51 up and running. Their hanger door was locked and they were waiting to get in and they stuck their head into my hanger and popped the classic question: Why would you fly a lawn chair with a kite over your head? I have learned not to take offence to this but invite this as an opportunity.

 

I invited them into my heated hanger and started my routine (dog and pony show) with the following points:

 

1.      This is like a motorcycle that flies. It is NOT a real airplane and is not meant to be. I also am a CFI and DPE for airplanes and this is completely different. You are out in the open air like many vintage aircraft, such as many top pilots who learned to fly in an open cockpit.

 

2.      It is a completely different way of flying. You have the wing in your hand without any mechanical controls. It provides a direct connection to the wing. It simply is more fun than a typical airplane (For this audience I did add that since I have not yet flown in a P51 I suspect that would also be spectacular fun and maybe we could trade a ride).

 

3.      These are typically not used to go anywhere and or travel. However these have been flown around the world. Personally, I use a single engine airplane to fly to Southern California and if I want to go further I FLY IN JETS.

 

4.      Yes I know a flying wing is hard to understand. So far the industry has not been able to perfect the flying wing. Right now we have one of the top military stealth  B2 bomber and the trike/hang glider wing that are the current flying wings. I feel that in the future the flying wing will eventually become popular as a commercial aircraft but we shall see how long that takes.

 

5.      Back in the day when I was involved in Aeronautical Engineering as a consultant, I had an AH HA moment that changed my life. I was in a meeting on a project I was working on with Gordon Cooper, the famous astronaut. After this long stressful MEETING, Gordon was to take me out flying in a piper cub to convince me to join the project team. On our way out to the aircraft Gordon said “I am so glad to get out of that meeting and go flying”. I replied, “Gordon, you have flown the fastest, best, most complex aircraft in the world and a rocket into space, do you still enjoy flying a simple single engine airplane?” Gordon replied “This is what I love the most, flying for fun and enjoyment. The test flying and space flight is incredibly stressful work. I am honored to have had that opportunity.  However, I love to get back to my roots just flying for fun”. This moment changed my opinion about flying and moving up the chain to faster and more complex aircraft so I stayed with what I love. The twin engine is faster than the single engine. The jet is faster than the twin engine. The rocket is faster than the jet. There is always something  faster for almost every pilot.

 

6.      I was able to fly with General Nolan, the commander of Edwards Air Force Base in a trike with one of my projects flying at Edwards with the USAF Test Pilots school. It is known that General Nolan  has flown the greatest variety of ASAF aircraft testing in the world. He loved the trike and gave me the VIP tour of Edwards Air Force Base. I asked if we could land where the space shuttle landed and he got clearance to do so and we did. After that flight with the General “woody” Nolan, as he wanted me to call him, the ultralight as they wanted to call it, one of the sought after aircraft for the top USAF test pilots. Some came after to fly with me here in Tahoe for the fun of it.

 

 

 

The P51 group had wide eyes and silence as I paused and asked “Any questions?”

 

 

 

We went over some details on how the flying wing works and the rotax engine and there contact showed up to let them into the hanger. I said “Thanks for asking and looks like it is time for you to get to work”.

 

 

 

This is how I handle this question. Any other points of why fly a trike and thoughts about how to handle this question would be appreciated.

 

 

 

I would like to expend these points for the benefit of all…..

 

Dec 1st

Flying the Revo as a Professional Operation for the last 3 years

By Paul Hamilton

Time flies when you make your living flying trikes. I decided to structure my flight school business with the Evolution Revo and it has ended up being a great way to go. Why? First the Revo has been able to excel in professional trike flying for both intro flights www.HangGlidingTahoe.com and primary training www.SportAviationCenter.com
Besides being a top performer allowing me to extend flying to all day and amazing appearance, the service/support has been exceptional.
In these last 3 years Larry Mednick has developed the ultralight Rev and now the outback/backcountry Revolt. WOW, amazing Evolution.