Apr 16th

Aerotrike Cobra Trike with Skis for Sale

By Rizwan Bukhari

Please contact Tom Shanahan with any questions. Complete and ready to go. Includes two helmets, headsets, Icom radio. Full instructor package with foot, cruise and back seat throttle, foot (nose wheel) pedals for the backseat, training bars. Skis are offered with the sale. Asking price with skis is only $17,000 and without the skis is $16,000 All reasonable offers will be entertained. Please contact me (Tom) at 208-420-2839 or email me at bugsshanahan@yahoo.com for any questions. Thank you.


Apr 11th

Initial Flight Review Airborne new M3-Sport trike with XRS wing

By Paul Hamilton


Just had my first test flight on the new Airborne M3-Sport trike with XRS wing. It was everything I expected. Note this has just myself (140 pounds) and one flight so these are my first impressions.


Nice improvements. What stuck out most has how straight it tracked. We would expect this with the huge wheel stabilizer area plus the winglets providing significant vertical stabilizer/rudder. Because of this, there is very little adverse yaw in the turns. No uncomfortable/odd slipping hard/scary to get out of turns. This lack of adverse yaw appeared to slow down the turn response slightly but the turn pressure is similar to the other high performance Airborne wings and maybe better.


With the minimum twist wing design, it performs surprisingly well with the 80 HP 912. Quite the glide for landing round out.


Again with just me, I could push the bar all the way to the front strut and it would not stall. When I brought it up quickly into a mild whip stall, the whole wing broke lift and pitched down quickly. Yahoooooo. When it stalls it stalls. No roll to either side and a clean straight break. We would expect this for a low twist high performance wing.


The trim system is about as effective as the other Airborne wings. Not a huge speed difference but I did not crank it to tight until I review this system better. From the factory trim was full throttle 75 MPH and glide at 65 MPH. Slightly faster than I like but I need to fly double with extra weight before I move the trim position on the keel.


What I really liked and thought was a big improvement was the offset engine angles providing minimum torque AND P factor effect throughout the engine and speed ranges. That high speed/full throttle irritating right turn of the older models drove me crazy. The combination of the engine offset with the vertical stabilizer area solves this problem.


Overall I think it is a winner and a great improvement. Make no mistake, this XRS is a high performance wing. You can get a lower performance wing on the updated/upgraded M3-Sport undercarriage and these should be options also.


This is a great option for the top of the line mid range priced trikes.


I will have this here for a while for demos as I train Warren the owner. Call me 775:772-8232 or e mail paul@SportAviationCenter.com  if you want more details for pricing and availability. 


Apr 9th

Travis achieves his goal to change his career/life and become and work as a trike CFI.

By Paul Hamilton


The phone rings. Someone asks if I provide mountain flying for trikes. HMMMMMMM…. Yes I do come out and fly with me and I will teach you how to fly in the mountains. Travis lived in NJ and wanted to get his CFI and set up operations in South America Chile to run a flight operation just like many other dreamers wanting a new life. I said “yea come out and fly with me and let me know when you are coming”. He said OK I will let you know.


It should be noted I get all kinds of calls about people wanting to live their dream but most are just talk. They say they will get back to me and that is the last I hear from them. Well this is not the story here.


About a month later Travis calls me and said “I sold everything and headed out to you. Do you still have that S-LSA trike for sale I want it?”.


Well he showed up, bought the trike, got his sport pilot license last summer and flew every possible time to get his 150 hours in less than a year. He just passed his CFI checkride and we had our first fly together with customers today. YaHoooooo


Travis will be working with me this summer providing intro flights at Lake Tahoe and doing primary training for trike students.


Congratulations Travis for living your dream and welcome to serious triking.


Apr 8th

Engine Failure After Takeoff

By Paul Hamilton

Engine Failure After Takeoff
As discussed earlier in Chapter 7, Takeoff and Departure
Climbs, proper takeoff technique provides lower pitch
angles during the initial climb to provide the slowest possible
descent rate for an engine failure after takeoff. The pitch
angle and altitude available for engine failure at takeoff are
the controlling factors in the successful accomplishment of an
emergency landing. If an actual engine failure should occur
immediately after takeoff and before a safe maneuvering
altitude is attained, it is usually inadvisable to attempt to turn
back to the takeoff fi eld. Instead, it is safer to establish the
proper glide attitude immediately, and select a fi eld directly
ahead or slightly to either side of the takeoff path.

The decision to continue straight ahead is often diffi cult to
make unless the problems involved in attempting to turn back
are seriously considered. First, the takeoff was probably made
into the wind. To return to the takeoff fi eld, a downwind turn
must be made. This increases the groundspeed and rushes
the pilot even more in the performance of procedures and
in planning the landing approach. Second, the aircraft loses
considerable altitude during the turn and might still be in a
bank when the ground is contacted, resulting in cartwheeling
(a catastrophe for the occupants, as well as the aircraft). After
turning downwind, the apparent increase in groundspeed
could mislead the pilot into a premature attempt to slow
the aircraft to a stall. Finally, it is more than one 180° turn.
For example, it is fi rst a 225° turn in one direction, then
another 45° turn in the other direction, totaling 310° of turn.
[Figure 13-6]

On the other hand, continuing straight ahead or making a
slight turn allows the pilot more time to establish a safe
landing attitude. The landing can be made as slowly as
desired, but more importantly, the aircraft can be landed
while under control.

At airports where the runways are much longer than needed,
there is typically ample runway to make a straight ahead
landing. If a tight pattern is being used and the crosswind leg
is started at the end of the runway, turning back the additional
90° to the runway could be the best option, depending on the
suitability of landing areas straight ahead.

Depending on the specific design of the WSC aircraft
considering weight, wing, and carriage, this maneuver can

be performed with no reaction time and as low as 250 to
500 feet AGL. However, the pilot should determine the
minimum altitude that such a maneuver would require of a
particular aircraft. Experimentation at a much higher, safe
altitude, 700 feet AGL as an example, should give the pilot
an approximation of height lost in a descending 225° and
45° turn at idle power. Starting high above the ground at
low bank angles and monitoring the altitude loss while doing
the required turns to line back up on the runway provides a
good reference. Finding the best bank angle to perform the
required turns for this maneuver with minimum altitude loss
is key to optimizing this maneuver and developing a habit if
this maneuver is needed in a real emergency.

By adding a safety factor of about 30 percent to account for
reaction time and no thrust from the propeller, the pilot should
arrive at a practical decision height. The ability to make these
turns does not necessarily mean that the departure runway can
be reached in a power-off glide; this depends on the wind,
the distance traveled during the climb, the height reached,
and the glide distance of the aircraft without power.

This is a highly advanced maneuver with turns close to
the ground. This should be practiced well into the training
program with the instructor. For example, consider an aircraft
which has taken off and climbed to an altitude of 350 feet
AGL when the engine fails. After a typical 4-second reaction
time, the pilot pulls down the nose, maintains control of the
aircraft, and elects to turn back to the runway, losing 50 feet.
[Figure 13-6, A to B] The pilot performs the 225° turn and
loses 300 feet. [Figure 13-6, B to C] The pilot must glide back
to the runway, losing another 50 feet. [Figure 13-6, C to D]
The pilot must turn another 45° to head the aircraft toward
the runway, losing another 50 feet. [Figure 13-6, D to E] By
this time the total change in direction is 310°, the aircraft
will have descended 450 feet, placing it 100 feet below the


Mar 30th

Death Valley takes my Wing

By Peter Owens

I'm in the need of a new wing for my Tanarg.

Left Oregon in my Toyhauler with my trike on a trip down to Death Valley last week for some nice warm flying as I done before in the spring. We camp at Stovepipe Wells .It has an airstrip next to it. It is always amazing to drive down the East side of the Cascades and Sierras through snow and ice all the way and to literally go from freezing to 80 degrees in the last hour of driving. This year it was hitting 90 when we got there.  I noticed a lot of Lennies in the sky so knew there were high winds aloft.

But the mornings were warm and calm and could fly around the valley in shorts and flipflops so all was great. The winds though would start to pick up from the south by 11. One morning my wife Theresa and I were flying to Furnace Creek to get some groceries but the wind was already starting to kick in from the south so we hightailed back to Stove Pipe and tied down the trike.

We drove to Furnace Creek and were having lunch at their golf course (It just seems wrong to have a golf course in Death Valley). But at least you can sit outside and eat. And the winds just kept picking up. It was starting to hit 30+ on the ground and I was just getting nervous about my Trike. Headed directly back to the airstrip and all was well. Still blowing like stink from the south, just tightened everything and headed back to camp. All good.

Back at Camp shortly thereafter the wind calms. First time in the afternoon it had done that. A friend stops by and we talk about taking him for a flight later.

We are sitting outside having a beer AND That is when the SCIROCCO hits!!!

A dust storm comes off the playa to the North and just rips through camp. Canopies are snapping off campers. Tents are blowing away. It’s now howling 40 FROM THE NORTH!!!. We race out to the airstrip (can’t even see the road for the dust storm) and get out there to see my trike flipped over. Ones wings webbing used for tying down was snapped. Yikes. One still intact. Stood out there for 1/2 hour caked in dust trying to keep it from scooting down the runway.

Soooo...  one Trike's wheel Pant broken, some fiberglass rash. But otherwise intact. (still have to go through it.) The wing though is toast. Keel broken. Sail shredded.

Lesson learned. When it the desert, whatever it takes, tie the tail down to something. I could have used a long tie to a parallel cable that was there for tie down.


So- now I'm in the market for a wing, new or used, for my Tanarg. Please contact me if you have something to sell.

Mar 30th


By Todd Halver

Check out my ad on Barnstormers:

Bionix 13 



Mar 29th

For sale Transmitter+intercom+headsets

By Jozinko Sajan

For sale:

- ICOM IC A5 (channel spacing 25kHz) with ICOM powered cable from board network what includes a voltage stabiliser and interference suppressor

- Intercom Pilot PA-200 with VOX, powered by 9V battery (without an interference from alternator) + velcro PTT

- 2pcs headset Pilot P51 with volume control, gel ear pads, microphones to a noisy background

All was flying on my trike.

Video link: https://youtu.be/C-QubOJcipU?list=PLCB48D3B4F688E77B

Why I cant give here photos? :) I will send you by email...


Mar 28th

Heated Clothing for trike pilots

By Paul Hamilton

Flying in ther winter can be warm and comfy. Everyone has their own ideas about this. I have tried to simply bundle up and use those heated pads. This helps but does not cut it for a professional trike operation in the winter. I need to stay warm all day and keep my customers warm all day. The only solution I have found the only thing that works for me is heated clothing. Simple.

Here is an excert that I have on my web site for winter flying:

It may seem that it is cold flying in an open cockpit when it is freezing out there. It may appear that winter is not the time to go triking, microlighting, ultralighting powered hang gliding. Let me dispel these misconceptions.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Yes it is cold out there but you can use a modern state of the art heating system used my the military. It is simply heated clothing. I now use heated gloves, boots and vests. Gloves are 22 watts. Boots are 22 watts. Vests are 44 watts. HeatedInsoles That totals 88 watts of heating right near your skin to keep you warm and toasty. heatedVest Imagine trying to hold an 88 watt light bulb, it would burn your hands. This 88 watts is efficiently put where you need it to stay warm.

HeatingCoils We have the technology and can use it. Have looked and tried other systems and chose the Gerbing heated clothing mainly because of the technology plus it is available at the local motorcycle shop so it is easy to get, add or replace as necessary. Other brands probably do a good job also.  Gerbings developed Microwire™ in response to a Department of Defense contract for heated clothing for Special Ops Forces. You will use this to stay warm while you fly. Enough said. Here we show you how we suit up with all the heating clothing to keep you warm.

Check out what you see while flying in the winter. Snow, cold/crisp air - warm and tosty. 

For those do it your selfers how to design your own system.

Mar 22nd

Joy and frustrations of a student pilot

By Bob Lemke


What I would like to solicit from this blog is other's learning experiences along with their mind set. As I type this I've received 9 hours of instruction, 7.5 of those hours in the last three days. The first 1.5 hours was at my CFI's airport, the rest at my hangar/home in my airpark. 


The joy comes from flying again after a 37 years absence. 40 years ago I soloed with 0 hours because back then nobody was doing tandem hang glider flights yet, let alone giving dual instruction. I bought a used Seagull III and three other beginners from work joined me in the quest to learn how to fly. We learned in the Sierra foothills just east of Sacramento, California and on our 2nd outing one of the beginners crashed, destroying the Seagull and placing him in the hospital for 3 weeks. I became a dealer for Seagull to receive better pricing and placed a order for 3 new gliders for us remaining students. When the 3 of us resumed training, instead of the 20 minute drive to that foothill site, we drove 3 hours to a coastal site named Dillon's Beach with a 100' tall sand dune hill. There was a lot of physical effort involved in climbing with our wing in the sand but the reward was launching into a constant sea breeze that elongated our flight time and more importantly the soft sand in the LZ for our beginner pilot landings. With that long drive it was a serious time commitment so we always camped and had two or three days of learning per trip. After many trips we felt we were ready to return to that foothill site and continued training there. Between the 100' sand dune and the 500' high foothill site, all flights were short compared to the time of hiking our gliders up those hills. The time had come for our 1st "altitude" flight at a place north of Clear Lake, California called Elk Mountain with the LZ in the dry creek beds next to the Middle Creek Campground. The launch was 3500' AGL above the LZ. This area is famous for thermals so as low time pilots the three of us launched early morning to insure a 10 minute sled ride to the LZ. That was at least 5 times the air time of the other two sites. All three of us wound up doing what the more experienced pilots predicted, and that was pulling the bar in a bit past minimum sink and flying with more speed, hence a shorter flight. But 10 minutes in the air did give valuable input as to where each of us had set up our hang point CG, and so we could make adjustments on future flights to insure our CG setting would provide minimum sink for hands off the control bar straight and level flight. Getting the right CG proved very important for our next altitude site which was Big Sur. This site was famous for giving that first altitude flight so I was looking forward to that trip already having some altitude flights at Clear Lake. The club I belonged to went to Big Sur every Thanksgiving due to the whales migrating south that time of year. Nothing curls your toes like flying over a pod of whales in a prone position and your wing acts as a sound amplifier when they surface and force air out of their blow hole. It is loud. The club owned a old hot rod 4X4 Ford truck with a 427 and manual transmission that pulled a custom trailer built to accommodate 24 gliders. i know a lot about that truck because when I didn't feel comfortable about conditions on the launch hill, I would drive the truck back down the hill with just my glider on board. This happened more times than I'm willing to admit but hell I was one of the lowest hour pilots in the club and had every intention of surviving my early learning phases to become a higher hour pilot. On one of these Big Sur trips I didn't exercise my previous good judgement and launched above the fog before it had burned off because there was a good size opening in that fog along my proposed flight path. Well I'm sure anyone reading this is going to think what happens after you launch and are flying that VFR path and it closes back in again? You would be correct and I shouldn't have launched because in the time it took me to reach that clearing in the fog, it had closed in. This was why I mentioned how important it was at the Elk Mountain site to properly dial in my CG attach point for hands off minimum sink. When your in a white out that is your only option, remove input to the control bar and experence that feeling of time stretching out, where every 10 seconds feel like a minute. I am however keeping track of the time waiting for a break in the fog because my due west flight path will take me over highway 1 and then the Pacific Ocean. I finally saw a break in the fog and turned towards the opening and once there was relieved to see Highway 1 just west of my position. Total relief but that was short lived because on further observation I had no idea where I was in respect to the LZ and didn't know if I should fly north or south over Highway I. I chose north and that was incorrect, wound up landing 4 miles north of the LZ at the gas station/greasy spoon. After folding my wings I had breakfast wondering how long it would be before the truck/trailer would find me and pick me up. During the course of eating, 3 other pilots landed there to prove I wasn't the only idiot to launch into a sucker hole in the fog and after breaking out of the fog heading the wrong direction.



I got off subject, damn I'm good at that. Well back on subject, these early days of flying lit a fire under my ass (or lit my ass on fire) and 3 years after learning to fly hang gliders I was at my local FBO taking lessons in their Cessna 150 trainer. This was a low budget flying club that even though they had the new 152s, I preferred the old 150 for two reasons, manual flaps vs the slow moving electric, and more important for the budget minded, the 150 only recorded tach time hours unlike the 152 Hobbs time. Lower RPM settings would net more log hours and less billing hours. On this note you are probably aware I'm a budget minded person and as such I'm having some diffculty with time to solo and instruction rates. If memory serves I think the 150 I rented from the club I belonged to and paid monthly dues went for $25 per hour wet and the instructor was an additional $15 per hour. Granted this was 37 years ago. I feel like I'm getting a good rate from my current CFI at $150 per hour in his trike at my hangar/home location. However, time to solo might be different. I don't want or expect to solo at 0 hours like I had no choice in my hang glider. I did solo GA aircraft at 10.8 hours and as a newly minted solo student pilot moved my touch and go's from my 2400' FBO field to a little airstrip my U/L friends were using at 1200' in length. I got to practice short field and spot landings all day at that little strip which was only 3 miles from my home strip. I got pretty good at this and when my club had its Fun Day with flour bomb drop, balloon burst, and spot landing competition I was eager to participate. Only problem was students weren't allowed, so I was bummed. I could understand a low hour student pilot could get into trouble attempting the balloon burst and even the simple flour bomb drop, but spot landings? This is what we practice all the time we are accumulating, not just hours flying straight on cross country flights. I spoke up, the powers to be contacted their insurance agent and the green light was given to allow the students to do spot landings. That was the very first 1st place flying trophy I ever received, still proud to this day.


So this gets me back to the first paragraph, I have 9 hours dual and have the impression from my CFI that my first solo is further away than the 10.8 hours I soloed the 150. I know we need to trust our instructor's judgement as to our flying abilities but input from others would be appreciated. What was your flying experience before trike instruction? How many hours before solo in the trike. How did you feel about your CFI? I really want the good, bad and ugly.


Here is my thoughts on flying. As a little boy I was a tree climber for the perspective of being above the ground and the solitude. As I grew older I would climb mountains for the same reason, to escape the 2D world and enjoy a 3D experience. I will never fly as a means of transportation and as such would never ever fly to a schedule. I'll leave that to the pros. Unlike my hang gliding days when so much time was committed to driving to the flying site and hence a bit of pressure to get some air time even if conditions were less than perfect, now doesn't exist due to my home/hangar fronting a taxiway and just 900' to the active runway. Yep, with no time commitment envolved in getting to the flying site, I have the luxury everyday I wake up to decide if conditions are benign enough to serve my level of experience. Life is good retired at a residental airpark.


Mar 11th

Importing trikes from the US to the UK

By Paul Hamilton

Hey trike pilots in the UK. If I want to import a new trike or a used N Numbered trike to the UK from the USA, does any one know how or if this has been done?

There are four possibilities:

Ultralight 103, new S-LSA ASTM complienent, used S-LSA and used E-LSA. Any ideas, suggestions or contacts are welcome and helpful.

Now that the UK has left the EU, is this helpful for importing US trikes to the UK?