Jan 30th

An Epic Day Flying Trikes Part 1 First Flight

By Paul Hamilton

The story starts at the Reno Air Races September 2015. Two beautiful woman approach the booth and ask about this Revo trike and become very enthusiastic about flying. Visiting nurses. No solid reservations. They will call. Yea. 


Surprisingly I get a call about the visiting nurses who want to go up. We book. First attempt we schedule, and it looks good but when they show up it is cranking out of the south not predicted. I have to send them home. Disappointment for all.


The second attempt I was able to predict to call it off the night before and nobody drive down because  a strong storm was coming through. Even then it was canceled they were unhappy since it was there on day off together and they had to scrap it.


Third attempt. Everything looked OK, winds 20 to 26 at 9000 so it is flyable. Nice inversion below 7000. We get there and it is completely calm at the airport  and the mountain top measured winds at 10,000 MSL were 30 gusting to 45. Typically I call it off at 30 to 35 knots at 10,000 measured. I had to call it off when it was calm on the ground. Hard to do. They were almost insistent on going up and a agreed but said it would be nasty. Disappointment for the third time. First time I have ever had to cancel someone three times.


They decided to book separately now since their schedules were hard to coordinate.  Well finally, the winds looked calm but there was fog and low lying clouds. We took off not knowing whether we could even make it to Tahoe. Looked like a nice passage under the clouds but anything could change.


Got through and climbed up and got above the clouds.


Yea. Sunshine. Clouds and mission 1 accomplished by getting to Tahoe.


Now to get down through the higher layer and the lower layer.


Looks good.


We descended on down and was able to scoot under the lower layer and skin the dry lake bed.


Her comments I will remember "this is like being in Heaven" and "Now I know why you do this. The best thing I have ever done"



We finished at 9:30 and I have the lovely and talented Heather Davis from Petaluma scheduled to fly the rest of the day.

Jan 27th

the life of thread ? (not brian!)

By monty stone

i have two wings, the original 12m chronos , 1993, and a 15m northwing maverik, appx 200hrs. i,m flying the maverik on my cosmos echo  here in arizona, where i winter ( ain,t i a lucky bastard!). i have to tie it down here in the desert , my home-made wing covers (made from some $1 per yard cotten, ) over the wings. i hang empty plastic milk jugs all arround the edges to keep the covers on. i used to put water in 'em but with the covers frequently wet with dew the extra weight wasn't needed. (till the wind blows!). even though the material is soft it still seems to abrade the stitches (aided by the dust). some of which show fraying. i paint the leading edges of both wings black and yellow, plus the two outer wing panels, partly for visability, partly 'cos yellow is the fastest color! the paint stiffens the maverik leading edge panel and it SEEMS to climb better, that could be the yellow too! i use water based latex which dries very quickly, covers well ,sticks like shit to a blanket, and adds very little weight, 1 pint only. sometime ago i built a 'bettsywhanger wing rippa' (i posted pics here), and tested my 'test panels' stitched to the rear of the wing. couldn't rip it, but i lack the 'gonadia' to try it on my stitches! (especially the 'wounded' ones). i don't have any parameters to  compare it to. i'm sure the 'purists' out there will castigate any moron that would fly with 'frayed' anything, and maybe i'm overplaying the 'wear and tear' on the stitches. i do look at the 'worn ones', as well as 'kicking the tires before 'most' attempts to aviate, and not much change is apparent to the fraying. i'll stick my scrawney neck out and ask " why not paint the UV damage - prone top surface when new with some kind of protective 'paint' that would delay the UV onslaught? the weight would be significant, but on a 100# wing wouldn't be a dealbreaker, though the passenger seat warmer might have to go! i'm thinking more of single surface 'dacron' not the 'high budget' fast wings out there, obviously they 'ain't covered with 'bed-sheet' cloth! my 12m chronos, although celibrating its 23rd birthday is still 'stiffer than a wedding dick', and when i tried my 'wing-rippa on it all that happened was the needle hole stretched a bit, no ripping. i believe it is 'trilem' or something like that, i think it's used to make french chastity belts .i haven't, (and won't ) tried to rip the stitching after all what would i achieve with out 'factory' figures to compare to. i have no idea what wing stitch material is, it well could be cat-gut for all i know! if any one out there in trike-land, oops! flex-wing-dom, has tried painting his wing, results? replacement ain't gonna happen, i'll run what i brung, (unless theres an abandoned revo, (low hours) out there somewhere! (preferably yellow). hugs and farts, monty (not python!)































Jan 21st

My first engine out

By Maarten Lobker

My first flight of 2016 turned out to be much like the stock market - going down quickly for no apparent reason.

I am flying a 2006 Northwing Apache ST (currently branded as a NW Navajo) with a Rotax 582. Only 231 hours total time, well cared for. However, as eluted in the title, I had my first engine out a few weeks ago.  I'm sharing this story because I learned a lot in the process and it reminded me that even the most trusted engines can fail.

It started with a non-eventful 20 minutes flight from a drylake to KBVU. After a short pause at the FBO, I restarted and took off again. At 200' above midfield my engine seized without warning. I had enough runway to put it down safely (thanks Leo Fitzgerald for training me well). Once on the ground I was able to restart and put it on a quiet taxiway to do some tests. Fuel, mags, temperatures, high RPM, etc... all looked good. So I gave it another try. Unfurtunately, just over 200' it seized again. This time I was prepared. Once on the ground it would not restart.

Back in the garage I took the entire fuel supply apart and checked & cleaned the usual suspects. Fuel pump, filters, carburators, spark plugs, etc... all good. I replaced the fuel pump anyway. After all that, the engine ran again, so I decided to give it another try. This time I had help (thanks Lauren Attaway) and we opted to test on the dry lake. Unfortunately, same story all over. I felt like an early aviation pioneer, barely reaching 50'. The engine was completely locked up this time.

Time for an overhaul.
A quick visual inspection showed scratches on the rotary valve, so we sent it to a repair shop (Thanks Glen for transport help). Once in the hands of a  licensed Rotax mechanic, I got the call that this was one of the worst cases he had ever seen. Failed crankshaft bearing, damaged piston, damaged engine casing, and metal shavings that went through the rotary valve.

While the cause of all this remains unclear, there are a few things that may have contributed:

1.  I bought this trike used with only 145 hours, but it had been stored for more than 2 years without use. I learned that low hours on an older trike does not mean everything is ok. Sitting still for too long is bad. 

2. I pre-mix my fuel with high-grade Amsoil. However, the oil pump was still installed on the engine, basically running without functioning.

3. I used the same fuel after my trike sat for 4 months this summer. I know, that's a no no. Won't do it again.

Lessons to be learned. I'm sharing all this, hoping it will help others. If someone has another idea of what might have caused it, feel free to contribute.

I'm happy to report that I got myself a brand new engine yesterday (thanks Steve Beatty). Leo F. helped me install and test it. Runs like new :-)

Jan 14th

For Sale - Flight Suits, Gerbing Electric Gear

By Craig Valentine

I have 4 winter Flight Suits for sale, including an older red/black summer Ozee, a like new red/black Ozee Millinum, new gray HMK Snow Mobile Suit and a superb blue/yellow Fladden Suit for cold WX. 

Additionally, Gerbing liner jacket, vest, pants, socks and gloves for 12v. 

Everything in XL or XXL. I'm 6'3" and 215 pounds. Figure roughly 1/2 price for everything except less for the older summer Ozee suit.

Craig   cvalentine10@gmail.com   510 220-4905   Photos available

Jan 6th

TSA compliance audit this AM

By Doug Boyle

Flight Instructors are getting audited for Compliance to the TSA rules.  I had mine this morning!  It was friendly and informative, and served notice to expect a comprehensive review in 3-4 months.  They want to ensure we are collecting copies of Birth Certificates or unexpired Passports, and  proper ID's.  In addition, maintain logbooks and copies of above for a period of five years.  No need to do this for one-time Discovery Flights, Proficiency Checks, Flight Reviews, and recurrent training.

Dec 31st

2015 Year Triking Review

By Paul Hamilton

From my perspective, it has been another great year for Triking. Larry continues to Evolve the Revo with many new upgrades and introduced another great addition to triking, the ultralight REV. Abid continues to support the Apollo line plus continues to supply the Delta Jet 2, a great option for a USA supplied/supported trike. P&M introduced the PulsR and the "British" dominated the world games.  Thanks to our one USA entrant to the world games 2015 by team USA Todd Ware the USA had a significant presence. The Brits currently provide great exposure through the world games.


 Also we must congratulate Henry TrikeLife for getting his CFI, transitioning to a Revo and getting people interested ion triking through his videos. Henry is a big asset to triking. My other Henry Boger  trike friend, from Pacific Blue Air  LA, has been providing an incredible number of  intro flights that introduce people to triking. It was almost exactly two years ago he came up for his trike CFI and has been a huge success in southern California.


As far as safety, We were able to get spiral dive awareness (thanks to Henry and Larry again) to a new level and start the process to get spiral dive recovery into the FAA PTS.  


Thanks to all those others introducing those to triking in one way or another and providing a POSIIVE  influence for triking . Many who are not mentioned here. We are all lucky to have industry experts/professionals as well as new bees providing positive input for the form of aviation we love.


Any other accomplishments/progress for 2015 you feel are significant please include.


My best to all for a great 2015 and the upcoming 2016.


May the positive trike force be with you....



Paul Hamilton

Dec 27th

Looking for a spinner for my Ivopropeller

By Rizwan Bukhari



I am thinking about putting a spinner on my Ivoprop (just for cosmetic beauty). I ordered one from trikebuggy, but it turned out to be the wrong size. The diameter of the spinner I got was 4 inches and I need a 6 inch spinner.

Now I have searched aircraft spruce and other websites and have come across some bigger spinners but they are for Cessna and other aircraft.

Can anyone point me in the right direction for a 6 inch diameter spinner.


Thank you,



Dec 17th

bah humbug!

By monty stone

seasons greetings ( politically correct ) and merry christmas to all 'floppy-wing' fliers, and if you've been good, there just might be a bright shiny new 'revo' under your tree, monty. ps. i thought i was wrong once, but i was mistaken.

Dec 9th

How do you like the current WAG 2015 - Dubai - Microlight/Trike competition course and task format.

By Tony Castillo

What are your thoughts regarding Trike/Microlight competition and what should the course be like, and what tasks included so it is a safe and more even competition for all trikes of similar characteristics.

Here is the course, as I understand it begins with a distance measured take off, a fast run around pylons, a fast pass for speed measuring, then climb to 1000 and engine off precision landing. Each task is judged and poits awarded (or taken out).


Microlight / Trike Course - 2015 WAG Dubai

Dec 7th

Help w/questions about building my own WSC Aircraft

By Jerry Wilbur

When bulding a dule searter/Cross Country WSC:

What size and type of aluminum, engine, wing, where should I start?