Corvair College #8 Page 2 November 12-14, 2004
www.FlyCorvair.com Hangar, Massey Air Ranch, Edgewater, Fla.
Above, Dan Weseman is working on his 3,100cc Corvair well past midnight. Dan
is a professional rigger from the Jacksonville, Fla., area. Note how thick the 5x10' steel table is. Dan dropped
this off as a present two weeks before the College. When a rigger offers you a heavy duty table, he means it.
It weighs 2,400 pounds, and we had to borrow a crane to take it off his trailer. The oil pump test rig is in the
foreground. The case on the right hand side has just had its studs painted. The sections of 3/8" hose keep
paint off the threaded area. It's much faster than taping the ends of the studs. In the background is Dave "The
Bear" Vargesko's ColtVair/Wagabond sitting on its gear.
Dan Weseman talking to Gus and I at the welding table. The table will one day be in the Corvair Aviation
Museum. Amongst many other things, Mark Langford's KR-2S Motor Mount was built on this table at Corvair
College #3. Today, we have a purpose built KR-2 Motor Mount jig. But the design owes its origin to the top of
Ah, the new friends you make at Corvair College. Ivan Carlson, Super Pulsar builder from Louisiana, brought
down all of the parts to assemble a hybrid Corvair/VW engine based on 90.5mm cylinders. This yields an engine of
2,882cc. Ivan had done a lot of prep work, but these engines are significantly more difficult to assemble than a
standard Corvair. In our shop, Kevin has assembled a number of these engines, and guided Ivan through his
assembly. Kevin's special sense of humor seemed to grow on Ivan day by day.
Glen Bankston, Dragonfly builder from Moultrie, Ga., who'd previously attended Corvair College #6, brought his engine back for
some more assembly work. Glen carpooled down with Larry Koutz. Most impressive was Glen's handmade computerized
engine monitoring system. In the course of our work with Corvairs, we've come across some of the most clever
craftsmen you'd ever hope to meet in aviation. Although not everybody is a professional mechanic, a number of
the people at the College had impressive backgrounds in the mechanical world which they brought to the building
of their own engines.
Larry Koutz of Moultrie, Ga., is a highly experienced Q-200 pilot. He is currently exchanging his Continental
engine for the Corvair engine you see running here. This is Larry's test stand mounted on his trailer. He
actually drove it around the hangar ramp on engine thrust. Greg Jannakos provides steering at the trailer tongue.
Note that Larry has built a baffle box to cool his engine. All air cooled engines need this crucial piece of equipment
when being operated on the ground, especially freshly overhauled ones.
Jack Cooper, left, and Mike Hyers are friends who drove down from North Carolina together. Jack was a
helicopter pilot for many years, and Mike had a career as a C-130 flight engineer. Mike impressed many of the
people at the College when he visually spotted an out of track propeller hub on a running engine. We disassembled
the engine and found a burr underneath the prop hub. After re-installation, it ran dead nuts on. Steve Upson
checked Mike's eye with a dial indicator, and the run out he found was only .008". Not bad for a guy who wears
601 building team from St. Louis, Missouri, Louis Kantor, left, and Vince Olson, carry their case to the bench.
Both of these guys hold ATP ratings, and fly regional jets for a commuter airline. They picked up their engine
from a builder who'd purchased the parts but had made little progress. In two days, Vince and Louis got their
engine about 50% done. While not everyone can come to the College, the rewards in aviation go to those who show
the initiative to just get started. Above the Embry Riddle sign in the background rests a dormant Corvair/Cassutt project.
Greg Jannakos' engine under power on the dynamometer. The starter shown in the photo is our standard low profile
model. After the runs were done, we modified Greg's starter to the ultra low profile, which fits inside the
601 nosebowl. The carburetor that ran every engine on the stand is an MA3-SPA from an O-200. In the background,
from left, Gerry Scampoli, Mark Thomson and Glen Gingras. Mark had recently picked up a Corvair engine project
and was somewhat skeptical of the motor until he visited the College. Once he saw the resources and friendship
available to Corvair engine builders, he completely changed his opinion and now is a solid Corvair convert.
Larry Hudson's Fokker D-VIII engine, above. The appropriate cowling for this airplane is very large, and thus it
can use a standard front starter. We ran this engine at our shop last year. Larry brought it back to have it on
display. It's a very well built engine, but I'm going to make Larry a new set of intake pipes, which will better
match the craftsmanship he put into the rest of his engine.
If you're a KR builder, you probably have your own bet on who's going to be the next person in this photo.
We have half a dozen Corvair/KR builders who will become airborne soon. What should be important to you is that
in time, you too will join the ranks of Corvair/KR pilots. While pilots could buy another engine, the respect and
camaraderie afforded those who build their own airplane and engine is unique. In this photo is Steve Makish, left, and
Bob Lester, the Vanguard of Corvair/KR pilots.
Gus takes Larry Hudson out for a familiarization flight in the 601. He flew 15 people at the College. The
601's engine is a completely by the book 2,700cc conversion. Some of Gus' passengers were in the 240-250
pound range. The fact that the plane easily flew all of them speaks volumes of the 601's design and how good a
match the Corvair is for it.