Dec 31st

I LOVE 'TECH', BUT........

By monty stone

i consider BALLISTIC RECOVERY SYSTEMS' technology level to be 'stuck' in the '1950' s auto era;  plate glass still used to look through, seat belts not used, or available, no crush zones, steel dashboards, rigid steering columns that ran from behind the front bumper to the chest ,minimalistic door catches that allowed doors to fly open going over a bump,remember 'suicide' doors that hinged at the back ? hoods that slammed back, to de-capitate front seat occupiers, air-bags only a dream of the future. remember 'hitlers revenge' the vw, 8gals of gas sitting on your lap, the vw bus had NO leg protection, a minor parking lot 'prang' resulting in MAJOR leg injuries, ford pinto with a gas filler pipe pushed into the gas tank through a rubber 'o'ring, and then mounted behind the rear 'bumper', in the 'rear end me here, position. (my own pinto had 'flammable' signs riveted all round it till a h/way patrol cop made me drill the rivets out and take 'em off! he probly was a shareholder!)  all these, and many other 'flaws' were fixed, finally, after much blood shed, and 'hand-wringing' of corporate 'penny-counters in the then to be , future.  well, the future  is HERE! the tech is available to take the human deployment out of the equation. it's just gotta be 'modified and adapted to fit the BRS. but, bussiness accumen of , if it costs more, it'll reduce our 'profit margin', and any way, we're selling all these the market can bear, will endure, unless enough pressure is bought to bear! so what if the price doubles from $5k to $10k, if it will STOP ME FROM 'DEADING' MYSELF, it's worth it!  my van has a 'knock' sensor that instantly senses a low octane gulp and retards the next few ignition sparks etc, to avoid damage, or inconvenience to the system. obviously, relying on the human to assess the threat, and  risk, decide and deploy 'AINT WORKING'! of all the trike tragedies that have occured in recent memory most, apparrently were equipped with 'the safety net' of an on-board recovery system, yet not one has saved the occupants. sure, if USED they possibly would have, but NOT relying on the human to deploy. yeah, i know that 'shxt' happens close to the ground, etc, but purchasers of these systems, for considerable $$ should have a better chance of success, than winning the lottery. if i were the 'high mucky-muck of one of these companies i would lock my chief designer in a cage, feed him on 'red meat' only until he comes out with a viable system to use TECH to overcome the human shortcomings of F.T.D. (failure to deploy). until then i'd replace that 'puny' little T handle with a 10 inch dia red 'panic' button mounted directly in front of the pilot's face hooked to a 'loud scream detector' wired to the deployment device as 'backup'. WHEN IS SOMEBODY GONNA WAKE UP? ..............................................................                                                                                                                         freazier nutszoff                                                                                                                                                                                 ps. hell! i might even buy one myself!                                  

Dec 18th

Fuel filter for trikes

By Rizwan Bukhari

Today I have a question about fuel filters. Can anyone tell me what kind of a fuel filter do you use for your 912 trikes.


My 912 came with a glass filter and I believe my first Airborne trike (582 Bluehead) also had a similar to the picture below,

My filter looked in pretty poor condition and very dirty so I order a new one from Aircraft Spruce, I wasn't entirely thrilled with it's quality. The one on Aircraft Spruce comes with different size plastic fittings.



I read up a little bit on this particular fuel filter (above) and it seems that the mesh is much finer then what Rotax recommends and in some cases this filter was responsible for clogging the fuels flow causing engine outs. One guy had picture of his completly destroyed aircraft, the cause was clogging by this filter that starved the fuel. 


Which brings me to this question, what brand fitlers do you use on your trikes, does anyone know if Rotax has a preferred filter? Does anyone know of issues caused be the fuel filters.





Dec 13th

another sad day for trikers.

By monty stone

 one in australia, one in california.            are we experiencing more trike fatals lately? is there any connection between 'transitioning' ga pilots and 'first' solo  crashes? are high performance trikes more likely to be involved? i'm not 'knocking' any particular form of trikes, like any other device, be it motorcycle, dump-truck or bicycle, in the right hands, with sufficient instruction of the correct kind they should be able to be safely opperated. is there a 'central' depositary where CORRECT accident info can be accessed in order to learn from these tragedies to maybe reduce them. we don't get much from the 'papperatzy' publishing their 'if it bleeds it leads' accounts of these events. after all, if they are relying mainly on 'eye-witness' accounts, with the close-up of an excited face of a suddenly famous 'eye-witness' who is more interested in being seen by their buddies than they are recounting an accurate account of what they saw. the ntsb and faa don't seem to be too interested in 'ultralight' accidents, especially pilot only involved. i do realize that every time i challenge gravity and take-off that this might result in 'gravity 1, monty 0, and accept that risk. passengers often don't, or didn't have the info necessary for them to assess the mortal danger of aviating. if sport pilot has done anything good, it maybe flushed the 'wide-seat' ultralights from taking up uninformed passengers on sometimes tragic flights. the house i bought in arizona sold by a lady who's husband, a ga pilot took her grandaughter up in his luscombe, showing her a loop and crashed, killing them both. she still curses him! i guess it all boils down to what happened, why it happened, and what could have prevented it, and how can we learn from it. also, brs were probably carried in these recent events, but sadly, as usual not deployed. my boring 'rants' on 'recovery' systems that rely on the pilot to deploy are too repetative to repeat, so i won't repeat them, LIKE HELL I WON'T! WHEN ARE THE CHUTE MFRS GONNA ' GET WITH IT' AND AUTOMATTICALLY DEPLOY, AS DO AIRBAGS ON AUTOS!  . quote' those that forget the past are doomed to repeat it'.'again and  again..............                                                                                                                                         ps. as the 'big boys' ntsb and faa usually refer 'ultralight' accidents to local police agencies perhaps they could 'encourage' them to ask that the closest 'trike flight instructor' be invited to help with the investigation, with, i'm sure a more accurate outcome.  pps. the use of the word-age  'trike' and 'ultralight' is simply because that's what they are perceived to be by ' non triking' earthlings! ', of course, we 'flex wing opperators' know better, don't we'? ,though, if it looks like a trike, flyes like a trike, it just might be a trike! somehow, 'flex wing pilot social' just doesn't 'cut it'. 'eliptical winged aircraft'? nah! SPITFIRE!                                                                                                                          freazier nuttszoff

Dec 12th

Replacing Rotax 912 Fuel Pump

By Rizwan Bukhari

Hi all,

So, I may have to replace my fuel pump soon and I was doing some research, which I would like to share with you and then I have a few questions that I hope you can help with.


In my search for Fuel Pumps for the Rotax 912 80hp, I found two different choices on CPS




And then you have 893-115


Both of these are mentioned in the Rotax Service Bulliten below as viable replacement pumps.


What is the benefit of the 893-115?

There is this website that explains the benefit of 893-115


And I am still confused, but what I understood is that it (893-115) is just a fuel pump by itself and you can buy the accessories that are needed for your 912 engine (because apparently there is a few different types of fuel pump out there so this fuel pump allows you to buy only the needed accessories).


Following are some more questions that I have for anyone who can help here, I am getting together with my A & P to replace fuel pump on mine and would like to be prepared with answers to some of the issues others have faced.


Fuel Pressure Issues?

I have read on many Forums that when the fuel pump was replaced, they had Fuel Pressure issues, did any of you notice that in your trikes (after replacing your fuel pump) and if so what was the fix?


Does Rotax reimburse you any costs for following the Service Bulletin and changing the fuel pump?

On the online forums, some people claim that they got half of the replacement costs by sending in the old fuel pump back. Most say they didn't. Does anyone know anything about it? 


What if there is no indication of a problem with fuel pump, should it be replaced?

Well if it is an SLSA then I guess you don't have a choice, but what if it is an Experimental? On some forums a few people said that they called Lockwood Aviation and asked them that if their existing fuel pumps were working fine and there was no indication of an issue with the fuel pump (such as leaking weep holes), should they still replace it and the Lockwood Aviation told them NOT to replace them. What is your view on it?


Lastly I watched this video on youtube, I believe the captions are in Italian so it is hard to understand but is this scientifically a correct demonstration of pressure issues? in this video I think they are demostrating that the old pump doesn't have enough pressure and should be replaced.


And as always thank you for helping.





Dec 8th

Another Fatal Trike Crash :(

By Rizwan Bukhari

Pilot was Matthew Wilson, does anyone know what caused the crash.

Pilot Killed in Ultralight Aircraft Crash

The ultralight crashed through a carport before striking multiple vehicles.

Mike Eliason / Santa Barbara County Fire

The ultralight crashed through a carport before striking multiple vehicles.

Originally published 11:15 a.m., December 6, 2016
Updated 3:37 p.m., December 7, 2016

The pilot of an ultralight motorized hang glider died in a Tuesday morning crash soon after taking off from the Santa Barbara Airport. The pilot has been identified as a 45-year-old male but his name has not been released.

According to County Fire spokesperson Capt. Dave Zaniboni, the glider went down in the parking lot of the Willow Springs apartment complex in Goleta, crashing through the roof of a carport and striking two vehicles. No one on the ground was hurt. The glider took off at 10:04 a.m. and the crash was reported at 10:09 a.m.

Zaniboni said emergency crews remain on the scene as the FAA conducts an investigation.

This is a breaking news story. Check back for updates as they become available.

[UPDATE] The pilot has been identified as Matthew Erwin Wilson of Santa Barbara. The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Coroner’s Office is investigating the cause and manner of his death.

Dec 4th

Mounting options for your Antennas

By Rizwan Bukhari

Hi all,


We have a nice discussion going on mounting Antennas on trike so I thought of organizing it a little bit with pictures to help anyone wanting ideas of mounting antenna to their trikes.


For my Airborne trike, I bought a flag/whip antenna mount from axis alloys and this is what it looks like, it's adjustable so can be adjusted for a horizontal, vertical or any angled roll bar.


Here is an idea posted by Doug used by Gregg Ludwig, looks pretty simple and clean




The part for the above mount is SS Tang from West Marine website


The next one in line is Todd's mount made by Neil Bungard of AirCreation, looks like a very clean set up.




And last but not least is Doug Boyle's mount on his old trike, I like the Strobe and the Antenna nicely and neatly organized together.




Here is an example on a Delta Lite Trike



 Sirio-Antenna-Moved to Landing-Gear (2)


Doug Boyle's DIY mount for your keel




Doug Boyle's mounting on the landing gear close up




If you have any close ups of your antenna mounts, please feel free to share. I think on this blog the best way to shareis copy and then press Ctrl V (you can't insert pics, unless if I don't know what I am doing :)





Nov 27th

prov. ' neither a lender or a borrower be '.

By monty stone

well, i was, and i did! while having an excellent memory, it doesn't last long, and i had forgotten when i loaned my trike to a 'many hour fixed wing pilot'. the recent tragedy involving a FWP, and his fatal flight with a borrowed trike jogged it. in 1994 i had taken my home-built trike to Alvord fly-in and a pilot, well known to me, very accomplished with most flying things asked to try my trike. he said he had flown trikes 'a bit', so, against my 'inner voice' ( the one that yells NO! NO! when i'm selecting a second cream-filled donut)     screaming NO! i let him. ( i was  Mr nice guy, then! ) well, the flight went ok, BUT, he was wearing HUGE, hob-nailed boots, with thick soles, and with no 'brake feel' had locked the front end on landing, did a 'stoppie', standing the trike on it's nose. the forks bent back, making the trike un-useable till i was able to repair it. no tragedy, fortunately, but it mean't a 1200 mile round trip wasted, for me, and re-inforced an obeyance to the above proverb. ( though if larry wants to lend me a REV, preferably yellow, for say, three or four years i might ammend this rule!)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  freezier ballsoff                                                                                                                                                                             ps. i keep hearing about 'naked trike flying. is this a new fad? i personally prefer a flying suit and gloves. am i missing out?  where would i keep my chewing gum? OH! i know..........                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

Nov 25th

re-inventing the wheel, again. or the blog that never was!

By monty stone

us 'retirees', (euphemism for 'west-ward' bound!) have WAY too much time to muse on what-ifs, what could be-s or cood-a bins. anyway, i was 'musing' on the huge amount of 'Trikeology' there must be in this sites archives, but more or less inaccessable, without some kind of reference index. such as 'Rotax, wing info, training available, regs, how to, where to , why to, etc,etc.'newbies' that wish to learn or ' oldbies' who have forgot could then take advantage of the experience of others in the 'Trikeing world. i'm abyssmally ignorant about sites, (in addition, i'm told,about other things, too!) so have no idea whether  such an index exists, or could exist. other sites i use have such a provision listed as 'maintenence, repairs, data, etc, etc. therefore, re-inventing the wheel, or, the blog that never was...................                                                                                                                                                          ps. kinda like the road sign my wing-tip hit in mexico, i swear it read " ignore this sign". i did, but my wing-tip didn't.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  freezier ballsoff

Nov 23rd

Changing/Upgrading Engine on an Experimental

By Rizwan Bukhari

Hi all,


One of my friends is thinking about upgrading the engine on his trike from a Rotax 582 to a Rotax 912 trike. His current trike is an Aerotrike Cobra.

Can anyone tell me what is the paperwork requirement for such a major modification on a trike?

In such a scenario is the trike inspected again by a DAR and a new Airworthiness Certificate Issued? Or is it just updated on your registration?

Lastly, If the engine is purchased online then how do you verify that it is NOT a stolen engine. (And of course he is going to physically go and inspect the engine before paying for it).









Nov 17th

Epic New Trike Film Takes Flight!

By Hattie Archibald

MOTORKITE DREAMING is a new Australian feature documentary that follows two amateur daredevils as they fly microlights 4000kms north to south across the Australian outback.

It’s an epic journey on a scale that few have attempted before, across some of the most hostile desert on Earth; but the payoff is a spectacular birds-eye- view of Australia’s most remote and unseen treasures. This is Australia as you've never seen it before. 



The film premiered at the prestigious Hot Docs film festival in Australia before touring the country’s east coast to packed out cinemas and rave reviews.

Now, audiences outside Australia have the chance to view the film online or on DVD, with 25% off until November 30.

Meanwhile, audiences in Australia can receive a 3rd DVD with every 2 purchased as part of our Xmas special, with 10% going to support critical health services in remote Australia. 


“It’s brilliant. Four stars.”  – Richard Wilkins, TODAY show Channel 9

“A thrilling ride along the songlines of the central desert and the fault lines of the human heart.” –

“A documentary like no other” – Glenn Dunks, The Big Issue



The documentary follows amateur adventurers Daryl Clarke and Aidan Glasby in the air, while on the ground fiancées’ Elsie Clarke and Lexi Keneally take big risks driving the fuel supplies needed for such a crazy adventure. Crossing 4 deserts, the intrepid couples must navigate extreme conditions, crocodile-infested swamps, and their own fears.

Led by two Aboriginal guides, the flying circus heads deep into the spiritual heartland of Australia. Soaring over this remarkable land allows them to connect with traditional owners who carry a culture tens of thousands of years old.

Whether the adventurers are swooping low over Lake Eyre, or across the Great Sandy Desert, this film offers a perspective on Australia few can ever hope to see in their lifetime.


“Flying a microlight is like a symbol of freedom. It’s like driving a dirt bike in the sky. It’s bliss. It’s just sensational. As your wheels come off the ground there’s this incredible freedom and lightness, it feels like the world’s yours. You feel alive. It’s magic and you’re sort of dancing with the wind. It’s a hard thing to describe, but it’s just magic.” Aidan Glasby, pilot