Reb Wallace died in a trike crash

Published by: Rizwan Bukhari on 2nd Jul 2017 | View all blogs by Rizwan Bukhari

It is with a very heavy heart that I write this. Our beloved Trike Instructor Reb died in a trike crash. There is not much information on it since it happened yesterday. He was with a student at the time of the crash.

I had the pleasure of flying with him many times and was inspired by his knowledge. He will be dearly missed. My condolences are with his family. When I was in Nevada, I flew with him at Lake Meade and the Hoover dam. I went to his house, where he burnt DVDs for me of that flight. I had the pleasure of meeting his wife and also their dog.

I am creating this blog with a very sad heart. And as we find more information about the accident, we will add it to the blog to learn more about what exactly happened.





  • Craig Dingwall
    by Craig Dingwall 5 months ago
    Wow, as always that's tragic. Always more so when you have followed peoples posts and videos such as in the case of Reb. Condolences to everyone.

    Let's hope we can determine a cause and perhaps learn soemthing from it.
  • Jozinko Sajan
    by Jozinko Sajan 5 months ago
    Blue Skies Reb.
    by PHILIP QUANTRILL 5 months ago
    Deepest sympathies to the families of Reb, his passenger and their friends
  • Leo Iezzi
    by Leo Iezzi 5 months ago
    This news has been hard....Reb was a master pilot who not only flew extremely well, but he also understood the do's and don't of weather, area, and situation.

    He has been running his GoPros pretty much on every flight. I hope they recover them and make sense of this tragedy.
  • Larry  Mednick
    by Larry Mednick 5 months ago
    Amen Leo
  • wexford air
    by wexford air 5 months ago
    Sad news. I liked watching his videos. Never knew him other than from this site but seemed like a lovely man.
    Its precious guys, enjoy and respect every minute!
  • Clyde Poser
    by Clyde Poser 5 months ago
    If there are any what the videos will probably show is low level flight over terrain where either a wind rotor or engine failure would preclude a survivable recovery. I know everyone likes to watch those "cool" videos but the risks of filming them seem not worth the lives of our fellow pilots.
    This is a tragedy but remember every other pilot had an opportunity to influence how the pilot we lost made decisions. So a little bit of all of us has been lost. Be safe out there and make good decisions.
  • Neil Bungard
    by Neil Bungard 5 months ago
    I had the pleasure of giving Reb both his Sport Pilot and his CFI in Trike. He was a great flyer. Reb was the Head Cheerleader for our sport and he will be sorely missed
  • jeff trike
    by jeff trike 5 months ago
    I never met him, but from his on-line presence he seemed to be a great guy and huge asset to our sport.
    My deepest condolences to his family and friends.
  • Doug Boyle
    by Doug Boyle 5 months ago
    Sad news; my condolences to family and friends. I never met Reb but enjoyed his FB and TPS friendship. Reb was an outstanding Ambassador to the Sport we love. It's ironic that he survived Nam but lost it in a Trike...
  • Rizwan Bukhari
    by Rizwan Bukhari 5 months ago

    The passenger is identified as a 48 years old Eric Sarchet of Everett, WA
  • Andy Hughes
    by Andy Hughes 5 months ago
    Dreadful news, I like most of you have watched his Vids. Heart felt sorry to his family and close friends. Andy
  • Sally Tucker
    by Sally Tucker 5 months ago
    Blue Skies Reb, I shall l miss you. I had 20 hours of training with Rebel in 2012 at Lake Havasu, AZ. My condelscence goes to his wife and family.

    Rip Rebel Wallace.
  • Frank Dempsey
    by Frank Dempsey 5 months ago
    Reb was a friend. I got my CFI with Reb back in 2004 in Rodeo, NM with Neil Bungard. Reg was first and quick. My exam was a good 8 hours. I was sure I was going to fail. Reg knew it all. Over the years, Reb and I went to DPE positions. Reb recommended me and warned me about what I was going to have to do...i.e. - Hell week in Ok City. I followed Reb's footprints and survived. Along the way, I would have trouble with this and that and would call Reb for help. He always, always, bent over backwards to help. I don't care who or what it was. I exchanged emails with Reb just last week. I can't believe he's gone. I'm going to really miss him.
  • David Dixon
    by David Dixon 5 months ago
    Rebel taught me to fly trikes in 2004. He was my good friend and I will miss him tremendously. His skill as a pilot always amazed me. He really could fly anything with wings. I've been watching videos we made and had to laugh at his Velcro shoes. My next flight will be dedicated to him!
  • Damien B
    by Damien B 5 months ago
    Sad news for sure. My condolences to all involved.
  • Lindsay Mannix
    by Lindsay Mannix 5 months ago
    I know that this will not be taken well by some here and I mean no personal disrespect to anybody here and I am humbled by the efforts of all here to be a part of the solution . I am as much to blame as anybody in fact.
    Another fellow pilot has died doing what he loved ..and so has somebody else..sad news

    This stuff has been obvious to me from the very first day that I had a so called "trike instructor" from the other side of the country offer me a cfi position because i had all the other licenses required in ga .
    1988 Back then there were almost no G.A. pilots flying trikes and quite frankly I could have made a good living selling and training new pilots ...BUT... I had already trained a few pilots under the radar that did not really exist at the time and after all I was at the time the only high time pilot in my area and the only one with a "real" pilots license in my area . I did not however consider that instructing would suit me ..

    What I had learned from training pilots with a fist full of money was that some people were simply not suited to flying ..full stop and I had no power to say no I'm not able to train you because you have a basic personality flaw.
    I already had their money and their new trike was either on the way or we trained in it ..but I did train them as best I could and often discouraged some with bad relations to follow example was a doctor who thought that his exhaust might weld itself better if he let it be for a while , after doing a 2 up cross the ocean for 5 miles .Another who was competent mechanically came to see me after a few weeks of solo ,with his trike in bits and a partner with a broken arm. He knew that I had made great efforts to ensure that he only flew solo and only within glide of safe landing . Yet here he was after a new wing and some tubing and welding to fix his trike (which he had painted in camo colours) . He was chasing a fox and it was great fun till he stalled at 20 ft in a high bank.
    I sold him my prototype edge wing and off he went to self learn more lessons .
    I could go on and there were success stories but this was a challenge that i considered beyond my resources and abilities.
    Was I good instructor? probably not , but I could see clearly those with no respect for the discipline demanded for relatively safe aviation. Clearly a structure was required to accommodate these people ,after all they were entitled to be trained properly right?
    Over the next few years training schools emerged with manager type a personalities trying to live the dream of flying for a living and even taking money from would be GA pilots, aligning themselves into the GA infrastructure of compliance and paperwork .
    I could now offer a solution to those who would want to fly after seeing me land on a tiny beach with ease only in the good conditioned that prevailed on certain days there. ( dolphin pool in case you are wondering)
    They would never ever be able to operate from such a place because the skill set they would learn would include a runway..
    I once encouraged one of these runway training schools to practice engine off spot landings ,which they did with some enthusiasm ..until there was a 2 up crash, early threshold and injuries to the passenger.
    The elephant in the room however ,was always that trikes are fair weather machines despite the fact that wings were getting faster and slightly better in turbulence
    ..the trouble is that turbulence can get pretty nasty and there were times, even in my GA hours that the turbulence was a real handful trike could be flown safely in.
    And here is where gyro's leave trikes for dead ..after all most ( not me) are operating from runways so the spinning blade danger is less.
    They handle turbulence with ease and grace and notice that airborne are doing gyros now and good on them ,they are far better suited to most of the flying done by part time pilots and have an added gain in maintenance where their blades are far more robust than our high tech wings that don't last at all.

    I had a good friend who was a gyro fiend and we would have dogfights ..he would always win the close quarters battle but I could out run and out climb him..lots of fun !

    You will never see a gyro pilot consider thermal turbulence a bother ..just a distraction. And they will land engine off on a postage stamp.
    Even their stick back "parachute descent"mode is well survivable.
    Speed...not so much but very similar to trikes now.

    I have a set of good set of gyro blades and bearing head ,I will be adapting my trike to take them (adding rudder/tail and keeping the a frame setup)
    I see a set of rotor blades as another wing .

    I love trikes so this is not a trike bashing exercise just a reality check as to why flies and who flies them in what conditions. They are crap in moderate to strong turbulence ok?

    Most of the infrastructure supported here is beyond the reach financially of most of the participants as part time aviators .
    I don't really have solution to this, and perhaps it is not such a problem as it was. but as long as we take responsibility for our actions as we learn form our mistakes perhaps there are better options for us and others going forward. When I see a high hour pilot go in I always wonder what he did wrong and what form of complacency overtook him . You can bet your life that he knew the risks.
  • Lindsay Mannix
    by Lindsay Mannix 5 months ago
    I just watched all of Rebs videos ,nice guy ,loved his flying for sure .
    Not many safe engine out options in the river videos except the river .. easy to say of course.
  • Larry  Mednick
    by Larry Mednick 5 months ago
    Reb had been videoing most of his flights as of late. We can only pray there is an onboard perspective of just what happened. That may be the greatest steer gift Reb could leave to the trike community.
  • joey martin
    by joey martin 5 months ago
    With a high time pilot like reb it makes me curious if it was a wing failure or medical condition. as stated earlier i hope he had his camera going and they can recover it and we can learn the cause.
  • Lindsay Mannix
    by Lindsay Mannix 5 months ago
    I just had a pm from somebody who wondered if his trike is safe so some clarification is in order .
    My apologies to those who may replace healthy respect with fear.

    The un flyable conditions are "in my case" midday Summer Australian thermals and or mountain rotor that happens when the local surface wind is greater than 14 knots . There are other random events that you might as well buy a lottery ticket for.
    Dust devils for example "mini tornadoes". usually associated with the poor conditions above .
    Im from hang gliding and all xc glider pilots carry chutes no question and mainly because of the over the falls thermal exit know the wing drop or nose down as you pass thru lift ...trikes are better than hang gliders because of
    1. a solid attachment 2. a higher wing loading.
    Yet I still fly a nano trike "hang glider with small engine" and thermal it late in the day ...I say again late in the day

    Trikes are fair weather machines and the very best at being that. It is the difficulty that they have slotting into a commercial environment that is challenging . Gyros are simply better because of their high wing loading.
    Just like smaller wings are better in rough stuff....but with a safety penalty of fast landing speeds.

    Ok gyros shake a bit and pulse and are a bit slow to get going ,there are some learner situations that make a mess of the mast and blades ..all familiar stuff for us.

    Trikes limitations are not their un doing but everyone must recognize that there are some conditions that do not suit trikes where other configurations are at least under control.
    Thanks for the response ..I will post this on the thread as well.
    The pure simplicity of trikes will never be beaten ...which is why I cant understand why we have made them so complicated.
  • George Sychrovsky
    by George Sychrovsky 5 months ago
    The trike manufacturers have been in some kind of race of producing ever higher powered ever higher speeds and heavier trikes, The high fatality rates is the result of it, they have became inherently dangerous by the design.
    That's the short story of it.
    Edited - My reply was to the FAA weight shift fatalities statistics discussion triggered by this accident, those posts were stand alone and run off the front page , that's the function of the board, so attached it to this thread , it was not meant to this accident specifically .

    Disclaimer ; opinions of others will vary depending on what they are selling
  • Abid Farooqui
    by Abid Farooqui 5 months ago
    George: I don't know what trike and wing was Reb flying. It was one of the Northwing models but with which wing, I don't know. Reb was fond of flying slower wings. I would guess this one would likely be a slower wing. So your generic statement may completely not apply here possibly. I can tell you this. If you are a pilot of a slower bigger wing, you better get some time before flying a faster wing before taking someone for training. A pilot used to flying faster wing has a much easier time switching to slower wings than vice-versa. But use of some common sense should keep either pilot safe when switching from one style to the next. I heard that they have just retrieved the crashed trike from the side of the mountain so the investigation can continue. I would hate to speculate on how the trike ended up on the side of a mountain here.
  • Leo Iezzi
    by Leo Iezzi 5 months ago
    George, and Rebekah. Please don't post ignorant nonsense. Seriously, I've rarely posted a chastise post, but both of you are gravely mistaken on many facts. Here's a link with the facts for 2016 Read up. As for Reb's unfortunate fate, the NTSB is investigating. Until they say what happened, anything written on this site is purely speculation.
  • Rebekah S
    by Rebekah S 5 months ago
    I'm not sure how my observation is ignorant nonsense. It is my observation that when people try to disuss accidents, the posts are quickly buried by photographs.
  • Leo Iezzi
    by Leo Iezzi 5 months ago
    " Unfortunately, it appears that selling trikes is a higher priority than safety. " Really? You know this for a fact?

    Do you have any idea how tore up Kameron owner of Northwing is over this incident?? Or how much he strives for safety in his products?

    Reb was flying a 50 hour new Scout XC. Since I actually do know how badly he is grieving over this, I'd call that pretty ignorant on your part.

    I can assure you, not a single manufacturer feels selling trikes is a higher priority over safety. That's just utter nonsense.
  • Larry  Mednick
    by Larry Mednick 5 months ago
    The wing Reb was flying, or actually the student in the front seat may have been flying was a GT5. This is a 13.5m wing that has been out since 2008. This wing is a classic and nothing new or fast about it. He was flying a NW carriage which is a 20 year old platform with a longer history than most. So blaming "new technology" and a speed war race among manufacturers is really OFF THE MARK in this case. If anything should stick out like a soar thumb it's the fact that there was a steep mountain involved in the impact.

    If you guys want to discuss accidents, let's go to the ones we know something about that the NTSB final report is finished and posted on. Here Bryan Tufnel just started a post on WHAT IS KILLING TRIKE PILOTS. What more do you want? Bryan is correct in that it is related to over a dozen fatalities. But in Rebs case all we know is pretty much nothing. So let's step away from something we know NOTHING ABOUT and move to cases where we have a lot of documented facts.

    Now let's start by getting our noses in Bryans post about how to NOT LOSE CONTROL of a trike. ill be glad to discuss any accidents that are "closed cases" with the NTSB.
  • Jim Garrett
    by Jim Garrett 5 months ago
    Thank you Larry.
  • Joe Hockman
    by Joe Hockman 5 months ago
    Thank you Leo, in this case your chastisement in more than warranted. In response to this incredible tragedy involving Reb and his student, it is mind boggling to me that some one would say "Unfortunately, it appears that selling trikes is a higher priority than safety." I for one find that statement very offensive. I happen to know Kamron at Northwing and I can tell your that safety is priority number one. If you sit down for a minute and really think about it in a rational way, why would anybody in the business of selling HG and trike equipment make compromises related to safety so that they can push more equipment out the door. That is like dedicating time to fabricating all the special fasteners for the coffin your business will be laid to rest in. Come on, lets stop this BS right now.

    Yes, Reb and his student were flying in his relatively new Apache trike with a GT5 wing. That combination has been around for a long time and Reb's trike / wing were well tested. I will venture to guess that most likely this incident was not a result of equipment malfunction but of course that is just speculation. I think the 2nd to last sentence of Lindsay's earlier note "When I see a high hour pilot go in I always wonder what he did wrong and what form of complacency overtook him" is one we most likely should pay attention to. Complacency is the nasty C word that is the enemy that all high time pilots need to fight on a daily basis. Again speculation but I suspect some form of complacency may be related to this tragedy. Larry's comment "If anything should stick out like a soar thumb it's the fact that there was a steep mountain involved in the impact" is right on, and by the way getting too close to a steep mountain at low AGL when wind direction and magnitude are not favorable for doing that is also a form of complacency. Of course, we all must wait until formal reports are issued before we have some details to learn from and discuss. But please, lets not jump to the ludicrous idea that manufacturers like NW are sacrificing safety in their priorities.
  • Rebekah S
    by Rebekah S 5 months ago
    My comment had nothing to do with Kameron. I was referring to:
    "I feel we have shot ourselves in the foot by posting all the "another trike death" as though is was commonplace"
    This blog requests that conversations about fatalities be hidden because it's bad for business. Then, note how quickly the topic is buried on the main page by multiple posts of photographs whenever it comes up.
  • George Sychrovsky
    by George Sychrovsky 5 months ago
    My reply about fatality rates and relation to the trikes designs was to the FAA weight shift fatalities statistics discussion triggered by this accident, those posts were stand alone and run off the front page, that's the function of the board, so attached it to this thread which was still up, it was not meant to this accident specifically .
    You may still think its a nonsense but that's ok , it is no harm to me if you don't believe it.

    Disclaimer ; opinions of others will vary depending on what they are selling
  • Larry  Mednick
    by Larry Mednick 5 months ago
    George, high performance trikes are absolutely dangerous when flown by pilots at do not have proper training. But saying a P51 mustang is dangerous by design and a cub is safe is just a silly comment. The problem that I think you mean to site is when a cub pilot thinks he can fly a P51 since he is trained to fly a Cub and they are both tail dragger, so therefore he is qualified. NOT. But that is certainly not the case here, that much I do know.

    On that note our newest wing is a 14m which is far from high performance that requires no transition training. So as a manufacturer I am listening. Having said that, Amy and I will be flying a RIVAL S on our REVO we like P51s and we also like our little Cub (15m SS on our REV). An accident can happen in either, but I don't feel I'm safer flying the REV although others without proper training would absolutely be safer in the REV. But that doesn't make the REV a safer machine. I just wanted to differentiate that statement.
  • Doug Boyle
    by Doug Boyle 5 months ago
    An age-old pilot once said, "A J3 Cub will kill you but only slower."
  • roger larson
    by roger larson 5 months ago
    That is very sad news to hear about Reb and his student. I do hope we can learn what happened. Accidents happen for different reasons. I flew 7 hours with Reb and he was very safety conscious. He knew his equipment well and its limitations. He was very smart about wind currents and part of his training involved talking about the wind currents and dangers. The video (if it exists) will be the answer to what actually happened. About the biggest thing we can all do for ourselves to prevent accidents (cars, motorcycles, airplanes, trikes, what have you) is to expect the unexpected. Yes engines quit, yes wind currents come out of nowhere. I was flying one day and the air was still as could be. All of a sudden i hit a huge downdraft that lasted for several seconds. I thought i had hit something in the air. As soon as it hit me it was gone. Of course i have no knowledge of what happened to Reb. It was probably something odd, strange, unexpected and sudden. Reb loved this sport and he was very fortunate to be able to do what he loved. He told me that he flew other types of things but none were as much fun as his trike. So when each of us does what ever we love to do...if we give ourselves more room for error than we think we need, we will be safer. Reb would want everyone to know what caused the crash and how to prevent it if possible. Reb talked with me about other crashes and their causes so that i could learn how to prevent that similar type of crash. My sympathies go out to Reb and his family.
  • Paul Hamilton
    by Paul Hamilton 5 months ago
    As much as we like to find fault for these tragic events in the equipment, manufacturers, sales, high performance the list goes on....... This is usually not the case. The sad reality is that in most cases it is pilot error in one form or another. Letting your guard down, not getting the proper training, not following the basics. It happens to us all. We all make errors, some worse than others. We are all human. This is comforting in the fact that most accidents can be prevented with basic aeronautical decision making, it is tragic because if we let our guard down, or something unusual happens, things can go bad fast.

    Reb was a true friend of mine. We flew all last summer together here at Lake Tahoe and were going to do the same here starting in August. My greatest condolences to all those in his life and hopefully we can all learn from whatever happened in this tragedy.
  • Lindsay Mannix
    by Lindsay Mannix 4 months ago
    Well said Paul,
    you know that in one perspective, not that any death is acceptable, but he was doing what he loved and most likely accepted all the risk involved. It is not such tragedy for and older gentleman as opposed to a younger one . I would rather screw up enjoying myself than wither away forgetting the old days bit by bit. But that's just me .
    If his passenger was of the same mind then the tragedy is less but ..His passenger is really the problem here as we would all know that carrying people means a no risk flight or at least it should.

    Back when there were no rules I had a passenger ask me if I had insurance and I replied "Why yes, its is a beautiful day, we have 500 mtrs of beach in front of us,a light sea breeze that has stabilized, new spark plugs,clean fuel lines and I'm in good health, and have flown 2 others today, I have been doing this for 5 years and I have a pilots license it just doesn't cover this machine as there are no licenses available . If you mean am I paying somebody else to cover my mistakes then NO and you should consider something with in flight service". We had a great flight and after landing he said "wait here ,ill be back " he returned 20 minutes later with his wife and his 14 year old daughter who was petrified at the prospect of "going up in that" I explained to her that it was to please her dad and" i will just do a quick circle and be back in 60 seconds and you can close you eyes if you like, and it will be the fastest 50 bucks I ever made ". she sheepishly agreed and we took off, and wanting to get it over with quickly I banked harder than normal ..I felt her clutching my shoulders then tapping my helmet ..I turned around to see her smiling like an angel with both thumbs raised . There was no inter com.We flew for half an hour hopping and swooping dogs chasing seagulls on the know ..On landing she said "MUM... YOU HAVE TO TRY IT!"
    I would like to think his(Rebs) passenger had such an experience as well.
  • Bryan Tuffnell
    by Bryan Tuffnell 4 months ago
    Lindsay, I have to say I really liked your ideas about insurance not being about dollars or paperwork but self-responsibility. While I don't believe in eliminating risk - which would mean staying on the ground; understanding risk and selecting a level that we're comfortable with is at least an attainable goal - I do believe that a full knowledge of how to control our aircraft and an awareness of the influences of the air and terrain around us is the best form of insurance, and an obligation we have to our students and passengers. It's really good to see those thoughts echoed in others' writings.

    Being a hemisphere away from Reb, I never knew him. However, he was one of us and we all have this common bond of flying these weird machines. My condolences to all those affected by his loss, and that of his passenger.
  • Joe Hockman
    by Joe Hockman 4 months ago
    A few more thoughts and responses to recent posts. I agree with Paul when he says "The sad reality is that in most cases it is pilot error in one form or another." In fact I have been quoted as saying that pilot error is responsible for 99.99% of incidences including crashes. The problem I have at the moment is that I can't really think of what would be responsible for the other 0.01% of cases that do not involve pilot error or ADM.

    Lindsay, from the information I have been given I would not necessarily characterize the other individual on board as a "passenger". He was either a recently licensed pilot (with Reb as examiner) or in midst of getting his biennial pilot review with Reb which happened the prior day. The tragic early morning flight was supposed to be a joy flight. We also do not know (or I should say I do not know) who was the actual PIC during the fatal accident. My interpretation is that Reb was in the back seat. Perhaps I should not say this but his body was strapped in with the wreckage but the other pilot was ejected or at least found separated from the wreckage. This is complete speculation but if there was some sort of medical incident in the air with Reb then he may not have been able to "take control" at the time they experienced some inflight incident in which case the other pilot may have been the PIC until the fatal accident. We really do not know all the details at this point and all of us will have to wait until official accident reports are published. I just wanted to caution on labeling the other individual as simply a passenger.

    Bryan, I have always enjoyed and learned from your posts. However, I would like to give a slightly different spin to some thing you said, in particular "While I don't believe in eliminating risk - which would mean staying on the ground..." I personally don't believe that staying on the ground eliminates risk. There are so many risks one can encounter on the ground. Even those that choose to be couch potatoes and perhaps only experience flight vicariously through watching videos choose (either knowingly or unknowingly) to take on other health risks through sedentary lifestyles. In my view almost every thing you do in life involves risk, even simply breathing, so I do agree you can't completely eliminate risks but it is possible to consciously minimize risks even while aviating.

    Hey, I look forward to some day meeting you and flying with you. Don't know when I will get my rear end over to that side of the planet but it is on my bucket list and my wife is fully aware of that item on my list. All the best from this side of the planet.
  • monty stone
    by monty stone 4 months ago
    I never met reb, but enjoyed his 'laid back' videos, in Common with the rest of us, and was of course shocked at the news. We all are screaming for a cause, but with all of us have to be patient and wait for the verdict. I sent several would be trainees to him and Eric, his passenger was one of only two other trikes flying out of our muni. Eric was training for his SP license . When viewing some very 'daring' videos of what the 'media' would report as 'stunting' I wouldn't be as shocked if one of these 'intrepid' pilots were to 'bite it' while pushing the envelope of trike control, after all with added power, speed and agility there is a diminishing 'recovery' instant when things go 'wrong'. That's what makes this accident so shocking, he was not evidently a ' one day to be a statistic ' trike pilot , and I don't believe his trike was 'a rocket ship' so am equally perplexed as to 'what could have gone so terribly wrong'. I personally have no desire to fly 100+mph in anything that doesn't allow me to 'eyeball' the stewardesses' and wander to the 'rest room' if needed, but progress being what it is realize that it is inevitable, with it's rewards and risks, and coming from a motorcycling background am so glad that all the modern 'glitz', hydraulic disc brakes, electric start etc, etc are now the 'norm' and wouldn't want to go back to my 1934 Ariel red hunter, with all it's idiosynchrocys. Recently,I looked at a ktm sportbike with a top speed of 180mph! available to anyone with $16,000 and a mc endorsement. Not for me! There's definitely a place for the high performance trikes, just not for me. I take Larry's statement that, in the wrong hands, high performance trikes can be dangerous to be based on fact, though I've read some 'stupid' remarks accusing trike mfrs to sacrifice safety for profit. Not worthy of rebuttal! There might be a correlation between older transitional pilots with, in some cases , extra disposable wealth, that enables them to step up and spend big bucks to buy a' carbotanium' rocket ship that needs a bit more ability than they are able to problem is that some 'real' pilots still regard 'kites' (as they sometimes call trikes) as a 'toy', and thus not as demanding to learn to fly as there 200mph bonanza did, 30yrs ago! You trike instructors deserve every buck you earn, trying to stop the 300# gorilla in the front seat from making both of you dead!
  • Bryan Tuffnell
    by Bryan Tuffnell 4 months ago
    Hey Joe, I'm with you ~ from where I'm sitting inside on a stormy winter morning, a bigger danger than dying somehow in the great outdoors is the risk of mediocrity and a slow, unremarkable acquiescence to old age. At least Reb was living the life he chose.

    I've been involved in various outdoor pursuits for some time, and the ones that grab me the most live at a happy intersection of environment, skill and consequence. Most outdoor pursuits expose us to a number of hazards, and the skills we bring along should mitigate those hazards to a greater or lesser extent. The uncontrollable hazards leftover constitute what is often termed 'objective danger' - they are the acts of God, the risks that can't be eliminated. I think we reflect our character by where we draw the line between the hazards we choose to pit our skills against and the level of danger we are prepared to accept. So some say aerobatics in a trike are irresponsible, others say that just taking off in one is an unacceptable risk. I like living in a world where we choose our own level of activity based on our perceptions of hazards and skills, and accept responsibility for the consequences of our actions.

    While I'm waffling and thread-drifting... in my (usually controversial) opinion, high performance trikes are not more dangerous than lower performing types. Anyone who has the skills to fly a lower performing trike 'properly' can fly a high performance trike 'safely'. However, a pilot who is getting away with poor practices may get a shock when flying a high performance trike for the first time - though this isn't the trike's fault. There is a trend that that smaller, faster wings are less tolerant of bad technique, but they don't require anything 'new' in the way of skills.

    Joe, all the best to you too, and I hope you get your butt on that plane soon! We've been lucky to have a few international visitors here thanks to this website, and it's always fun to extend our little community. There's a trike seat here with your name on it.
  • Abid Farooqui
    by Abid Farooqui 4 months ago
    Guys from what I know, the trike and wing Reb was flying would hardly be considered 100 MPH high performance aircraft. This wing was based on a wing we co-designed with Northwing. It was 13.8 or so sq. meters, hardly a nimble rocketship. Its fairly docile wing. Just FYI ..
  • monty stone
    by monty stone 4 months ago
    Hi abid, thanks for the 'heads up' re the trike involved in the accident. In my comment my mention of high performance trikes, and 100mph rocket ships specifically excluded these as causes of this tragedy. They were merely observations of the general direction that trikes have taken over the last few years , progress is good, and inevitable. But it does bring it's own set of 'rule changes'. Namely the training necessary to 'keep up' with the speed difference, twix a slow wing pushed by a 503 and a 100hp small area double surface . 'stuff' happens in a hurry at higher speeds! I'm woefully ignorant about many things, including regs regarding licenses required for 'legal operation of 'high performance' trikes.? As mentioned flying a p51 takes a bigger 'pair' than flying a cub, so, even though they both CAN kill you, if they take a dislike to you, the cub may take a bit longer! Ps I recently got a 'ride' in the back seat of (I believe an Australian trike,) the most uncomfortable seating I've ever had! The pilots helmet blotted out most of where we were headed, the seat had no side 'bum' support,
    Imagine a formula one car with a brick for a seat! Nothing for hands to grip, it was a bit 'bumpy', I guess I'm spoiled with my 'echo' form fitting seat! My legs splayed out in an 'undignified' 'birthing' position, my heels tucked into, I believe, the pilots lap! Every bar movement my knees got 'hit'. The wing was one of Larry's, don't know which and seemed to take the bumps well. But that seat!!!!!!!! PPS, Larry's revolt would address many of my 'bitches'!
  • Larry  Mednick
    by Larry Mednick 4 months ago
    We have now had not one but 2 untrained people "accidentally" take off in their REVs. In both cases no injuries and less than $1000 damage. Now it certainly could have ended fatal for both pilots, whoops that's the wrong word, people, but the slow speed saves them. Had they pulled this stunt in a high performance I doubt they would be ok. So there is also merit to that art of crashing slowly... and then we don't hear about it since there is no one to tell on them. The FAA is not involved and no one is the wiser. Mean while the same thing happens in the faster 2 place trike and the it's all over TPS with people blaming the speed of the trike. So you either have the training or you don't no matter the machine. But the faster trike is less forgiving as it meets Mother Earth out of control.
  • Abid Farooqui
    by Abid Farooqui 4 months ago
    Hi Monty: I understand what you are saying. I just wanted to specify what the wing was on the trike in question. IMO quite docile and lands reasonably slow and benign stall characteristics.
    Interesting about your description of discomfort in the trike you flew. In my view the most uncomfortable "birthing position" I have seen has been in the same brand that makes your Echo. In their 2 seat version. I am only 150 pounds on a good day.

    Training guys is an absolute must and that too good training in a like model as you will be flying. Its pathetic what Larry describes, 2 pilots accidentally taking off. There is no such thing as accidental takeoff. Stop being dumbarses and take proper training. Our sport is in great decline and people like that aren't helping. Can't afford training whether it is due to money or time, then sit home and watch Dr. Phil.
  • Bryan Tuffnell
    by Bryan Tuffnell 4 months ago
    Perhaps the best word to use when looking at the difference between low and high performance wings is 'consequence' - on many high performance wings the consequences of any inadequacies in pilot technique are far, far more likely to result in losing control, and the consequences of losing control are greater.

    Although as this thread shows and another recent one tries to show, fatalities can occur on any wing. There seems to a broad range in what is taught by instructors, which leaves our newcomers in the position of having to choose their instructor wisely.
  • Lindsay Mannix
    by Lindsay Mannix 4 months ago
    Larry,I wonder if those accidental takeoffs were from guys with good 3 axis experience ...In my short days as instructor ,I had more trouble in this way with those who could already fly (3 axis)than those who knew that they could not.
    Typically crash on take off and mild rollover?
    Lock up their trikes?? don't think so ,especially not in the home of the free !
  • Larry  Mednick
    by Larry Mednick 4 months ago
    Part 103... no one can tell them not to fly it except their wives... both had lessons but weren't ready to solo and couldn't land with the instructor. Showing the REV fly with no hands might have been responsible for these attempts at flight. But they both agreed not to fly it until signed off by their instructors when they picked up their REVs.
  • monty stone
    by monty stone 4 months ago
    Hi guys, in my comments on this blog I managed to screw up even more than ever and wandered off on a tangent. I repeat, in no way am I blaming anything for ribs accident, I know nothing as to cause. But I should have saved my 'remarks re the general direction trikes have taken' for a different blog, so I done it! I just read Larry's incredibly honest review of the Aussie trike, I think the old Greek guy with the lantern (dyeonyernees?) quest to find an honest man has been fulfilled! kudos to Larry! Ps, a bit like a wife doing a 'gentle' critique of your girlfriends dress! my spell checker kept insisting i wanted 'genital', instead of 'gentle', i guess 'robots' do have a sense of humor.
  • Clyde Poser
    by Clyde Poser 4 months ago
    I have flown extensively in the Chelan area where Reb and Eric crashed. I can tell you that the wind sometimes really blows strong down the Columbia river gorge. Turbulence along the cliffs and mountains in the area can be severe. Any low AGL flying can result in severe downdraft rotor encounters, possibly more than the climb capability of the aircraft.
  • Frank Roush
    by Frank Roush 4 months ago
    This article was posted by Reb Wallaces daughter and includes this possible conclusion.
    We believe the cause of this accident was due to a wind shear but are waiting further information as the investigation of the crash is still underway. The following link from the FAA will help you to better understand what a wind shear is and it’s effects with aviation.
  • Larry  Mednick
    by Larry Mednick 4 months ago
    Thank you for the insight Clyde. I know low level mountain flying can be very dangerous regardless of a pilots skill, regardless of the aircraft.
  • Doug Boyle
    by Doug Boyle 4 months ago
    Ditto on what Clyde and Larry said...go check out flying accidents out of Aspen airport for examples.
  • Frank Roush
    by Frank Roush 4 months ago
    I've been curious about something for a long time. It seems to me that if you can get down to stall speed, say 35, you could run into a brick wall and be mostly ok. That goes for rough terrain too.
  • George Sychrovsky
    by George Sychrovsky 4 months ago
    So I went to see those highly praised Jeb's videos , as I started to watch the first one of flying very close along side the sheer cliff at very low altitude with rugged rocky terrain right below It quickly reminded me the Aerotrekking "business idea" of giving trike thrill rides inside the canyons at very low altitudes over rugged terrain.
    When they killed a customer along with the pilot , they were sued and found criminally liable and to pay 2.5 millions.
    Personally seeing how he ( Reb ) flew I would not even get into an airplane with this guy , My self preservation instinct is stronger than that.

    Disclaimer ; opinions of others will vary depending on what they are selling
  • Paul Hamilton
    by Paul Hamilton 4 months ago
    I flew with Reb all last summer in the windy mountains. His personal wind limitations were much higher than mine.
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