Big Week In Wisconsin
This variety of events gives countless Corvair builders a chance to get out of the workshop and come have fun in the company of like minded builders. While the events
certainly will be educational, and present a good opportunity to make progress, the focal point is always people. Putting builders at the center of the events is
what the Corvair Movement is all about. We'll see you there.
July 25-26: Annual Pietenpol Reunion at Brodhead, Wisc. Brodhead is a quiet little airport in Southern Wisconsin. It is our favorite event of the year. It is
a small, family atmosphere for Pietenpol builders in a relaxed setting. I put it on the Web site to encourage fans of Pietenpols to attend this annual homecoming of
all things Pietenpol. You can get an idea of the flavor of the event by checking our June Hangar updates of years past (links at bottom of this page). Although I've
been an invited guest speaker there for many years, it's important for people to understand that this is not an airshow, nor a commercial event. The fly in is run with an
enormous amount of volunteer effort put forth by the local EAA Chapter. It's open to anybody with a love of Pietenpols and a friendly attitude, but anyone attending
is expected to behave as if they've been invited into someone else's home. We always hit Brodhead on the way to Oshkosh, so we'll have a full complement of parts, books
and DVDs with us, but we go out of our way to enjoy the day and leave a small commercial footprint. My forum there is 2 p.m. Saturday.
July 27: The Grand Opening of our First Regional Builders' Center at Falcon Machine in Madison, Wisc. Corvair builders know that the finest cylinder heads for
flight engines come from Mark Petniunas at Falcon. He has produced dozens of sets of heads, many of which are flying on the Best Known
Corvair powered airplanes in the country. Mark has owned the same Corvair automobile since he was 16. He's a Spartan trained A&P, and is a Murphy Rebel builder. Mark's
EFI system was the first one to turn a propeller on a Corvair. We've selected Mark and his facility to be the first of our three new Regional Builders' Centers. We will
shortly have a news release on the RBC system on our Web site.
From noon to 9 p.m., Mark will host an Open House for Corvair builders. We'll have running engines, EFI and Fifth Bearing displays, tours of Mark's machine shop,
and for the truly brave, a ride in Mark's majestic Corvair Greenbrier van. We're planning a cookout atmosphere where builders can get to know each other on the way to
Oshkosh. Of course, it's an excellent place to bring all your core engine parts and have them carefully inspected. Mark is
planning on having his cleaning tank in full operation so greasy parts can rapidly be cleaned for inspection. We will have the full range of our FlyCorvair.com
parts on display and ready for purchase. We frequently sell out of most of our parts at Oshkosh, but everything will be available at Mark's early event. The event
is absolutely free, but donations will be welcome for the brats and beer we'll be serving. Mark's place is at 2043 South Fish Hatchery Road in Fitchburg, WI 53575. His
phone number is (608) 835-3317. I recommend calling in the early afternoons or evenings.
Mark has recently been cranking out his fine cylinder heads, but there is still high demand for his unmatched craftsmanship. If you're planning on having Mark take
care of your cylinder heads, keep in mind he picks up a lot of work at Oshkosh every year, and this event will allow you to get in at the head of the line.
July 28-August 2: EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, Wisc., The Big One. I have only missed one of the past 10 years at Oshkosh. It is the focal point of the year for homebuilders. It's easy to criticize the event for its commercial excesses. But a realistic view tells you that
homebuilding is the very core of this event, and the majority of displayed aircraft are homebuilts. The EAA is putting special emphasis on affordable aircraft this
year. Oshkosh will always be the land of overpriced food, and drinks with too much ice in them, but when you're there you won't care. There's thousands of things to see and
do, and for us it's a chance to catch up with friends from far and wide whom we only see once a year. If you heard a story from someone who went and had a bad time, all
I can say is they were hanging out with the wrong people. If this is your first Oshkosh, come to one of our events, say hi and tag along to lunch or the next cookout.
A flexible schedule, sunscreen and good walking shoes are crucial factors in having a great time at Oshkosh.
My first forum scheduled this Oshkosh happens bright and early Day One from 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. Monday, July 28, in Engine Workshop Building 20. All week long, the
easy place to find us is in the Zenith Aircraft Booth. This is the fifth year in a row we'll be displaying our products directly in the Zenith Aircraft booth. Sebastien
Heintz mentioned that they will be bringing the 750 prototype to the show. He's again extended his personal invitation to us to display our complete 601 firewall forward
package in his booth. This year we'll be displaying our Fifth Bearing Engine, and will have the full complement of our parts, manuals and DVDs available. I'll finish
out the week with two additonal forums from 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. Saturday, August 2, in Engine Workshop Building 20, followed by a PowerPoint presentation from 1 to 2:15 p.m.
Saturday in Pavilion 6. You can print out my Oshkosh forum schedule at http://www.airventure.org/forums/presenter.asp?EventID=12&PresenterID=1405
We look forward to seeing you in Wisconsin.
Action Update July 10
Arlington This Weekend
Grace and I write this a few hours before I get on a plane to the Arlington (Washington) Fly In. While I'm in Washington covering the show with our West Coast
man Woody Harris, Grace will be at headquarters taking care of Scoob E, normal work, Oshkosh prep and keeping snakes at bay.
Enjoy this collection of photos from our world of Corvairs.
Norm Lathrop, above left, and I enjoy a cool breeze generated by his brand new 100 hp Corvair engine sporting All Gold Systems.
Norm and his building partner John Neff placed an engine order with us last year but opted to wait for the perfection of our latest systems. This engine now has all of them,
including the Electronics/Points Distributor that I developed and which is now flying in dozens of Corvair powered aircraft.
A week after picking up the engine, John Neff, above, and Norm Lathrop, wasted no time and mounted it on the front of their very attractive 601 XL using all our
Their engine was the sixth in six weeks that Kevin and I knocked out in an intense period of engine building. The deadline we were working down to was Kevin getting
married. Kevin will be out of the country until the last week of July. After 39 years of bachelorhood, Kevin is getting married to his college sweetheart, now an
engineer specializing in materials who works for NASA. He'll be returning to build engines as a married man.
The Lil Bruiser 601 XL built by Jay Bannister of Texas.
Kevin and I built Jay's engine last year. It also sports all the Gold Systems and an E/P Distributor. Jay
installed it using all of our off the shelf components, including our Cowling Kits. Jay was one of the last
builders to work without the full benefit of our 601 Installation Manual. We finished editing it when he was about halfway through the
installation. His career as an architect and his expertise in CAD drawings allowed him to share drawings with us, one of which is included in the Installation Manual.
The plane is exceptionally beautiful with its invasion stripes and P-51 flavor. Jay's an exceptional gentleman who's made friends far and wide during the project.
Although I feel I know him very well, I've actually never met him in person. We look forward to doing so when he flys to a future flightline.
Above, Lynn Knoll's Corvair powered Piet.
This side view shows off our Intake Manifold on the Knolls' Piet Factory creation. It's always
a pleasure to See Lynn at Brodhead. He's been chipping away at it with help from his son and granddaughter, making steady progress on his Piet. When it's done, he'll
be rewarded with an up-to-date, easy-starting Corvair mated to the granddaddy of all homebuilts.
The photo above shows the Knoll Piet's Gold Hub and Front Alternator System. Although not visible in the photo, he has chosen
to go with the full Gold Oil System and Niagara Cooler. Although this is normally associated with high
performance 601 installations, it also makes sense on a Piet. A relatively draggy aircraft with a slow cruise and climb speed actually has more to benefit from
a larger oil cooler. Set up this way, his airplane will be impervious to full power gross weight climbs in any outside air temperature. A super high quality Corvair
engine is not expensive, and has a place on any aircraft, no matter what the cruise speed. Lynn commented that our 601 Installation Manual
actually served him quite well in installing the powerplant in his Pietenpol. Sharp eyes will notice that he has our early style Starter Brackets and a standard, not
Low Profile, starter. If you see Lynn at Brodhead, congratulate him on his fine craftsmanship.
Lynn Dingfelder's 601 XL.
Lynn is another very friendly builder. His prior learn, build and fly project was a light single seat biplane. He chose the 601 this time around for its greater
utility and traveling potential. We've seen him at many airshows, and he and I spent four days working together in our old hangar in the dead of winter. Lynn is a very skilled
guy with a lot of interesting things to say. He built his own engine and installed it using all our Installation Components.
Don Taylor's all metal, two-place Flybaby.
Don is something of a legend in EAA circles. His incredibly innovative Tinker Toy was one of the best known homebuilts of the 1970s.
He returns to Corvair power for his one-of-a-kind Flybaby. His engine buildup features most of the parts from our Catalog. A highly skilled
builder, Don hammered out this airplane at a rate that would put quick build kits to shame. We first met Don in person at Paul Poberezny's SAA Fly In years ago.
701 On Deck
Rick Nisbet and Max Butler are a homebuilding team extraordinaire. With one covering the engine and another covering the airframe, they're just about ready to fly
their Corvair powered 701. The links below go to three movies of the aircraft running and taxiing (hit your browser's back button to return to this page after viewing the
1ST START at http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&videoid=37852729
ANOTHER START at href=http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&videoid=37919418
RUNNING at http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&videoid=37920076
The Corvair is a tight fit in the 701, as documented in our own 701 build. These guys made great progress by following our installation and duplicating much of it with
our Gold System Components, including a Gold Oil System. The installation includes a 66" Warp Drive prop they ordered through us. The
combination generates a lot of enthusiasm among 701 builders. These guys showed how much you can accomplish by following a proven path and applying perseverance.
Fisher Sport Fleet project off the ground.
In the above photo, Val, wife of Sport Fleet designer Ed Fisher, demonstrates the lightness of the biplane's fuselage. A few years ago, Ed drew up plans for a
Corvair powered two-seat biplane with a generously sized cockpit. He's now building the prototype at his shop in South Carolina, and is seeking several beta builders.
Ed will be at Oshkosh and will attend my Sunday forums. I encourage all interested people to contact Ed directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
These parts recently came through my shop. They were purchased over the Internet from a Web site advertising "aircraft quality Corvair parts." On the right above
are the oil pump gears included with this allegedly rebuilt housing. They're worn out original GM gears. The gear set on the left is brand new. It's easily
distinguishable from the originals by the roll pin inserted in the drive gear. Worn gears in an oil pump produce very low idling oil pressure. The case bolt pictured
is from the same source. Painting the underside of the bolt head as it is above is a mistake. A thick layer of paint here will only disappear over time, providing clearance, causing
the bolt to lose its torque. Our Assembly DVDs clearly show that only wet sealer is applied at this point. The piston ring set from the
same source is the cheapest variety of gray cast iron piston rings. I wouldn't re-ring a beater car with them. We use chrome piston rings at a minimum in flight
engines. These are details I do not expect first time engine builders to know. These parts were offered by someone who was theoretically an A&P mechanic. This is
just a greedy person jeopardizing other people's safety.
Our Fifth Bearing Test Program at a glance.
Here are the first three examples of my Fifth Bearing design, along with their destinations. It is a sophisticated design that absorbs bending and thrust loads at
the first bearing. Although it has run great and we've disassembled and checked it for clearance, we still have a significant flight test program planned. It is not
externally retrofitable to completed engines. When it's ready, we'll post more information on our Web site. The photo shows that the one destined for Mark Langford's
KR-2S is lightened by the removal of superfluous ears that were on the first two. The system is now 4 pounds over the stock configuration. This system is not
for standard engines. It's intended to serve builders interested in aerobatics and heavy constant speed props. The photo was taken last week in our shop, before we shipped
out the parts. In all likelihood, the next time these three parts will be in the same spot will be on the flightline at Oshkosh 2009.
Summer 2008 Corvair Events Schedule
This Week: Arlington in Washington State
An American made, fully counterweighted, billet crankshaft for a Corvair.
There's been some discussion in the Corvair community about newly manufactured crankshafts. To give builders a glance at an ultra high tech crankshaft, precision
made from a billet, in the United States, I'll have this crankshaft on display at the Zenith booth in Arlington. Sharp eyes will note it is counterweighted at every
cylinder. It's manufactured from a proprietary alloy that is commonly used in fuel dragsters. It is much stronger than commonly used crankshaft alloys. This particular
crank has a slight stroke increase for displacement.
Many extremely talented engine builders, mostly in southern California, have built some phenomenally powerful land based engines. Included in this group is Ray
Sedman of American Pi. I've been friends with Ray for almost 10 years. There is no subject on land based Corvair engines that he does not know. He has built
Corvairs to 3.6 liters with strokes of 3 1/2". He made this
crankshaft with his own hands. I've consulted with Ray on many occasions over the years and found him to be a real asset in our developmental work. A special thanks
to Ray for providing the display.
Details on the Arlington Fly In follow. What makes it all worthwhile is the participation of builders just like you.
Our Web site highlights the past 10 years of our work with Corvairs. There are
thousands of commercial sites on the Web for homebuilders. One aspect that makes ours different is the hundreds of builders pictured on our site. Over the years,
many of these builders have become close friends. Every one of these friendships started from an in person meeting at an event
we were all attending. If you're new to Corvairs, let me say there's a place for just about everybody. Nothing stimulates building like attending an event,
meeting new friends, learning and having a good time. If you're at home working by yourself in your workshop and there's a missing element of camaraderie in your
aviation world, make plans to attend one of these events. It's a guaranteed way to have a good time and recharge your building batteries.
July 11-12: 40th Annual Arlington (Wash.) Fly In. Arlington is an EAA fly in that's traditionally the third or fourth largest in the country. It's on the
north side of the Seattle area. I will be attending this event as a guest in Zenith's Quality Sportplanes booth. A number of West Coast builders called to encourage
me to attend this year. The 40th Anniversary promises to have an excellent turnout and many West Coast builders have made plans to attend Arlington instead of the
usual pilgrimage to Oshkosh. Of our three California Corvair Colleges, the two most recent were held at Michael Heintz's
Quality Sportplanes hangar. A number of the builders attending were from the Pacific Northwest. Here's a chance for us to have a Corvair event on their home turf.
Woody Harris, our man on the West Coast, will fly Rick Lindstrom's Kit Planes 601 the 900 miles north to Arlington for the Fly In. The
aircraft is an excellent example of a Corvair powered 601. After being built at our hangar in Florida, it debuted at Sun 'N Fun 2007 on
the diagonally opposite corner of the continent. It went on to win Best Alternative Engine Installation at the 2007 Copperstate (Ariz.) Fly In. After Arlington,
the aircraft only has to appear at Oshkosh to have hit every major airshow in the country.
Woody plans to arrive July 9, the first day of the show. He's flying up with Doug Dugger of Quality Sportplanes. If you're a builder planning on attending the
first two days of the show with ground transportation, please send me a private email as Woody and Doug are flying in and will be without a ground crew until I get there.
I will have a selection of all of our popular flight proven products including Gold Prop Hubs, Gold Oil Systems, Billet Oil Pans, Electronic/Points
Ignition Systems, Safety Shafts, Hybrid Studs, etc. I'm shipping these items out in advance, along with plenty of Conversion Manuals, 601 Installation Manuals
and DVDs. Anyone who'd like to pick up a large item like a 601 Motor Mount at the show, please contact me in advance at WilliamTCA@aol.com
I'm looking forward to a friendly fun event. I encourage all active builders to bring photos of their projects to share with everyone. I encourage every builder with
a core engine to pack the parts in the trunks or beds of your vehicles so we can conduct an inspection tour in the early evening. We're making plans for a social dinner
for builders on both Friday and Saturday nights. There's a lot on the schedule, and it's a great opportunity to meet other builders from your area. We have a number of
601 builders approaching completion in the Northwest, and this is a good opportunity for those just getting started to personally meet others who are approaching the
finish line. The show continues on Sunday, but my travel plans are to return to Florida. Woody will be on hand Sunday, available to answer a broad variety of technical
questions on Corvairs.
Now At The Hangar
June 2011 At The Hangar
May 2011 At The Hangar
April 2011 At The Hangar
March 2011 At The Hangar
January 2011 At The Hangar
December 2010 At The Hangar
November 2010 At The Hangar
October 2010 At The Hangar
August 2010 At The Hangar
July 2010 At The Hangar
May 2010 At The Hangar
April 2010 At The Hangar
January 2010 At The Hangar
December 2009 At The Hangar
November 2009 At The Hangar
October 2009 At The Hangar
September 2009 At The Hangar
August 2009 At The Hangar
July 2009 At The Hangar
June 2009 At The Hangar
May 2009 At The Hangar
April 2009 At The Hangar
March 2009 At The Hangar
January 2009 At The Hangar
December 2008 At The Hangar
October 2008 At The Hangar
September 2008 At The Hangar
August 2008 At The Hangar
June 2008 At The Hangar
May 2008 At The Hangar
April 2008 At The Hangar
March 2008 At The Hangar
February 2008 At The Hangar
January 2008 At The Hangar
Christmas 2007 At The Hangar
November 2007 At The Hangar
October 2007 At The Hangar
September 2007 At The Hangar
August 2007 At The Hangar
July 2007 At The Hangar
June 2007 At The Hangar
April 2007 At The Hangar
March 2007 At The Hangar
February 2007 At The Hangar
January 2007 At The Hangar
December 2006 At The Hangar Part 1
December 2006 At The Hangar Part 2
December 2006 At The Hangar Part 3
December 2006 At The Hangar Part 4
November 2006 At The Hangar
October 2006 At The Hangar
September 2006 At The Hangar
August 2006 At The Hangar
July 2006 At The Hangar
June 2006 At The Hangar
May 2006 At The Hangar
At The Hangar In April 2006
At The Hangar In March 2006
At The Hangar In February 2006
At The Hangar In January 2006
At The Hangar In December 2005
At The Hangar In November 2005
At The Hangar In October 2005
At The Hangar In September 2005
At The Hangar In July 2005
OSH, Illinois and SAA June 13, 2005
At The Hangar June 13, 2005 Part II
At The Hangar In May 2005
At The Hangar In April 2005