Soldiers in our country’s service too often sustain combat injuries that cost them the use of their limbs. What if they still want to learn to fly. Able Flight is one resource for such aspiring pilots. Another national project is Wounded Warriors and Renegade Light Sport Aircraft has worked with European LSA manufacturers B.O.T. Aircraft to create a hand controlled airplane for use in training such students. We interview Tommy Counihan about his experience in flying the B.O.T.
Search Results for : CT AND hand control
Not finding exactly what you expected? Try our advanced search option.
Select a manufacturer to go straight to all our content about that manufacturer.
Select an aircraft model to go straight to all our content about that model.
Over many years, many people have done solid work to accommodate people who are physically challenged in one way or another. That’s great! More opportunities to bring in motivated pilots is worthwhile.
Yet designers have been hampered from making such changes, partly as they are burdened by a certification system that is simply too rigid to make the effort of approval worth it for small numbers of specially-equipped aircraft.
Cars, hotel rooms, curb construction, building ramps, smartphones, and more …all accommodate persons with disabilities. That’s wonderful, however…
All those arrangements that make life easier for someone in a wheelchair must nonetheless cope with strenuous regulatory demands. Cars, hotels, and smartphones are created by vastly larger enterprises with staff to handle regulatory burdens.
In the more intimate world of recreational aviation, the industry is composed of much smaller enterprises. A lighter regulatory hand (using ASTM standards instead of full FAA certification) allows easier airframe customization for specific purposes — such as hand control fittings and linkages — and this system allows changes on a dramatically faster schedule.
Many readers know I love this event, the Midwest LSA Expo at Mt. Vernon, Illinois airport about one hour’s drive east of St. Louis, Missouri. Led by capable, enthusiastic, and friendly Chris Collins, this has become a regular event for many… that is, many vendors, many pilots, and me. I only missed once when we were facing a major hurricane in Florida. This will my 12th but it is officially the 13th annual running of the show.
Nearby you’ll see a roster of expected vendors. Now, as we all know agonizingly well, these are strange times so things can change and some promises can’t be kept but the nearby table shows which aircraft Chris is expecting. I have my fingers crossed for all of them but Midwest LSA Expo has been a good draw and many vendors return year after year.
Why do people keep returning? Because pilots enjoy looking over aircraft in a more relaxed manner than is possible at crowd-jammed events like Oshkosh or Sun ‘n Fun.
A mid-week demonstration featured Europe’s Volocopter and America’s Opener BlackFly. The two (three actually, a pair of BlackFlys flew) demonstrated their eVTOL flying capability. They could hardly have been more different.
Billionaires are investing in, uh, what to call them? …drones, multicopters, eVTOLs, UASs, UAVs, Powered Lift aircraft, the list literally goes on and on. The lack of a widely accepted generic name is one of several indications these air taxis of tomorrow are still in a fairly distant tomorrow.
Two industry experts gave me their judgment after viewing the Volocopter and BlackFly demonstrations. Both agreed the Volocopter presented better, performing a true demonstration of its vertical launch then transitioning to forward flight, manuevering, and then doing a landing. Both also said the BlackFly was much less impressive. “They just kind of bobbed and floated around, not doing any maneuvering or making a transition to forward flight,” each agreed. Both wanted to like each aircraft but one clearly won in their minds.
The age of Light Personal Aircraft is not far off in the future but is that where “fast-glass” LSA are headed?
Certainly, some LSA producers have ambitions for four seat cruisers or tougher bush aircraft or larger load-carrying aircraft to satisfy pilots that want more capability from their aircraft.
Those goals are fine, of course, but they are not what stimulates leaders and engineers at JMB Aircraft, a restless bunch that loves flying their screaming machine as fast as they can.
How fast is it? I went aloft with dealer Kyle Schluter to find out.
I also learned about the fuller product line and what Sport Pilot certificate holders can do to own and fly one of these impressive aircraft. (Article updated 7/17/21)
Orange Lightning in the Sky
Maybe it doesn’t look familiar but VL3 has already been seen by Yankee pilots under the brand name Gobosh and with the model designation 800XP.
“Winds are going to be rather sporty,” observed AirCam developer, Phil Lockwood, as he and Robert Meyer and the AirCam team finalized arrangements for another fly-out, this one to Jekyll Island (09J).
The single runway near the resort island had a crosswind forecast for arrival day. When it comes from the east, air tumbles down over a tree line to disturb a smooth approach. The air was indeed “sporty.”
I’m an AirCam enthusiast even though I don’t own one. I earned my multi-engine rating in an AirCam some years ago and I’ll take any opportunity to fly one.
Numbering 300 AirCams
(…that’s 600 Rotax engines!)
Many of you know the story by now. AirCam was first developed to fly National Geographic photographers trying to document nature in Namibia. From what I can tell the entire country appears to be one enormous, dense jungle. Where ya gonna land?
Phil to the rescue.
This flying dream has been years in the making. Admittedly, it’s a big project, but so authentic is this 70%-scale P-51 Mustang lookalike that I think I see you already starting to drool.
Don’t feel too conspicuous. It’s happening to me, too, along with nearly everyone else. [Article updated on 6/4/21 regarding price information; see below. —DJ]
Of the many thousands of airplane designs created since Orville and Wilbur made their first flight 118 years ago, North American’s muscular Mustang consistently ranks as the most-admired flying machine.
You probably can’t afford an original (or even the maintenance it takes to keep one flying) but you might be tempted by this fantastic carbon fiber vision from Euro developer, ScaleWings AeroGroup and its ultra-energetic designer, Hans Schoeller.
SW-51 Finally Flies!
On May 20th, 2021, SW-51 Mustang successfully performed its first flight at Mlada Boleslav airport (LKMB) in the Czech Republic.
ScaleWings reported, “Aircraft serial number #001 took off at 11:37 am into a light cloudy sky.” The all-important first flight went without problems.
We continue with further coverage from the first major airshow in almost two years… THANKS to Sun ‘n Fun 2021 for helping present these interesting aircraft and more.
This article has news …about two aircraft in a category I refer to as “alternative aircraft” …about an easily-mounted autopilot you can actually afford …and the success story of a French prop maker now well established in the USA.
Alternative aircraft is my umbrella term for weight shift aircraft (trikes), powered parachutes, gyroplanes, carriage-equipped powered paragliders (not the same as powered parachutes), Light-Sport motorgliders, and Light-Sport Lighter-than-Air flying machines. These unorthodox, not-mainstream aircraft have maintained a steady share of sales; around 100 new such aircraft enter the U.S. market every year.
Counting all types, the “alternative aircraft” sector may account for a quarter or more of all LSA sales. Alternative aircraft have attributes that drive customer inquiries: better affordability and unique flying qualities.
For years I’ve said that of all aircraft to succeed with battery electric flight, the first truly usable, enjoyable aircraft would be a Part 103 ultralight. I’ll list several reasons below but the aircraft you see in these images is already flying with electric propulsion and you can get on the list now.
U-Fly-It boss Dennis Carley said they are working on a name. For now, I’ll call the new entry the Electric Aerolite 103 and this machine is ready for market. A few customers already offered payments to get in line (more on that below, too) and one man wrote a check for an Electric Aerolite even while he keeps flying his gasoline-powered Aerolite. How’s that for a vendor’s dream?
Are you ready for electric? It’s ready for you!
“Clean and Tidy”
You hear that phrase about Aerolite fairly often. A very knowledgeable veteran of the light aircraft business, Scott Severen, spoke of visiting U-Fly-It, producer of the Aerolite.
Excitement surrounding Part 103 Ultralights continues. Considering what a nightmare of a year the entire world has experienced, many find it incredible that 103s are not only surviving, but thriving.
We still have such models as the popular CGS Hawk and Aerolite 103 that are gusseted-tube structures with Dacron wings; this remains a great choice for light aircraft.
However, we are also getting some advanced configurations. Examples reported recently here are the Aeromarine LSA Merlin Lite, Sector’s Spark, and Top Rudder’s Solo.
In this article, I look at another entry after a reminder from an alert reader …one on which I had previously reported. This one has been around a few years but never established any U.S. presence. That could change as 103 types continue their growth.
Small Airplane Specialist
Airplanes Dar is a small innovative company with a long history that started in the previous century… on June 24th, 1917.