Catching up with Jon Hansen and James DeHart of Hansen Air Group in Georgia. They rep the lovely line of FK Lightplanes German composite aircraft for all of North America (except Florida.) *** Jon had just delivered the first FK 9 ELA to a customer, who was there when I came by with four of his six children, all boys. Three of them, at least so far, want to be pilots like their dad. Nice looking family as you can see. *** The FK 9 ELA (which will be redubbed Sparrow to avoid confusion — some folks think “E” means Experimental) is a handsome, clean airplane that deserves to capture attention. There are a whole line of these immaculate S-LSA, including the FA-04 that set a cross-country flight record for LSA last year and the gorgeous FK-14 Polaris that was originally going to be offered by Cirrus until that company ran into difficulties last year. *** Jon also told me that Lycoming has given word that it’s LSA-destined 233-LSA engine will begin deliveries at the end of the year after a period of R&D. The company is now taking orders, and it’s reportedly less expensive than the 100-hp Rotax 912. Although 30 pounds heavier than the Rotax, it delivers 115 horsepower and has an alternator that pumps out 60 amps to power everything in the cockpit including the smoothie blender. *** What? You don’t have an ASTM-certified smoothie blender in your airplane? It’s what’s happening… I call mine the iSmoothie. *** More on the Lycoming tomorrow. *** Also spent time with Powrachute‘s Voyager ElectraChute which as you can guess is electric-powered on 128 volts of li-po batteries. These guys are a happening company with several gas-powered LSA models but the electric model is in a class by itself, if powered parachutes are your bag, so to speak. More on this tomorrow too, gotta get to the field.
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