William Wynne

The Corvair Authority
5000-18 HWY 17 #247
Orange Park, FL 32003

Up and Coming

William Wynne up front at Corvair College #5 in Hanford, Calif., January 2004.

We have a full schedule for the 2004 flying season. While some events will be just forums, we're planning on teaching several full blown Corvair Colleges this year. Whatever the event, I always make time to deal with the questions and issues of individual Corvair engine builders. We try to make every event about advancing the goals of our customers. If you have parts you'd like us to inspect, or something we may help you with, I strongly encourage you to bring your stuff with you to these events.

At Sun 'N Fun, I will be in the Zenair booth daily with my Corvair powered Zenair 601XL. I'll be giving forums at noon Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday in the Contact! magazine forum tent. Grace Ellen, Test Pilot Gus Warren, Corvair/Wagabond builder Dave Vargesko and Corvair builder/ Skymanta Productions Director Merrill Isaacson will be manning the Contact! magazine booth in Building C. Come on down to sunny Florida.

Corvair College #6 will be at our new hangar at 735A-3 Air Park Road on Massey Air Ranch in Edgewater, Fla., 10 miles south of Daytona Beach, May 8-9. Bring your engines and parts and be prepared to have a good time at our new facility. We will have full information on this posted on www.FlyCorvair.com shortly. Many members of the Corvair engine building community already have made plans to attend.

SAA Fly In June 11-13, 2004, at Frasca Field in Urbana, Ill. Wes Schmid of the SAA has graciously put us on the Forums roster for the third year in a row. We'll have parts with us, and some limited ability to work on people's engines. Please bring your parts for inspection, and come check out our 601 installation. This is a very relaxed fly in, and two Corvair powered aircraft flew in last year.

Buckeye Corvair College #7 June 18-20 in Ohio. Kip Gardner, a Corvair/Pietenpol builder, is hosting this full blown College just outside Akron. Look for detailed information at the www.FlyCorvair.com CC#7 Web Page.

Annual Pietenpol Gathering July 23-25, 2004, in Brodhead, Wisc. We stop here to see old friends on our way to Oshkosh every year. Many people feel that this is the premiere type club gathering in America, held at the nicest general aviation airport most people have ever seen. Let me offer that this is the friendliest aviation event of the year, and if you're a fan of antique aircraft, there are dozens of the rarest of them on display at this airport. When we list events we'll attend during the year, Brodhead hits the calendar first. Weather permitting, we'll fly the 601 here and then on to Oshkosh.

AirVenture July 27 to August 2, 2004, in Oshkosh, Wisc. The staff at EAA headquarters has already contacted us, and we duly filled out the paperwork for a set of forums. Being a big event, Oshkosh is a little tough for us to work on customers' engines, but I always make time to inspect parts and we'll have our full complement of parts available. You can find my schedule of forums at Oshkosh at The AirVenture Forums Page.

Seen Around The Corvair Flyer Hangar

Steve Megill's Pietenpol Engine

Over the weekend, Feb. 20-22, 2004, we helped Steve Megill of Auburndale, Fla., finish his Corvair longblock. Steve is the kind of guy I will always respect and go out of my way to help out. Over breakfast Saturday, Steve told us a bit about his service days. He piloted a landing craft June 6, 1944 - D-Day. Steve is installing his Corvair on his seventh homebuilt aircraft, a Pietenpol.

Some of the Corvair build gang who helped out in the hangar over the weekend are in the photo above: Q-2 pilot Larry Koutz, A&P extraordinaire Steve Upson, KR2S/Corvair builders Sam Sayer of Zephyrhills, Fla., Steve Megill, and myself, with Whobiscat.

Valentine's at FlyCorvair.com

Bob Lester, farthest from the camera, and Steve Makish, near, fly their Corvair powered KRs over the Atlantic about 10 miles east of The Corvair Flyer hangar on Feb. 14, 2004. Click on the photo directly above to see a QuickTime movie of Steve Makish departing Corvair College #6 in his Corvair powered KR2 N841SM. Visit QuickTime to download the movie player.

Valentine's was a big day in the FlyCorvair.com hangar. Corvair powered KR pilots Steve Makish and Bob Lester both flew their birds in from their home airport in Boca Raton, Fla., for our V-D bash. They have about 210 hours between both planes on Corvair power.

In the photo above, Bob's KR is up close and Steve's on the outside over New Smyrna Beach, Fla. Gus Warren took these photos from Dave Henning's Decthalon.

I took the photo above of Steve's airplane in my hangar. Steve has about 140 hours on Corvair power now.

We had about 30 local Corvair enthusiasts and friends at the hangar for Valentine's Day. It was our first of many open houses. Moving to the new hangar was a big milestone for us. Many of our friends here on Valentine's, including Miss Sue Schamay in Bob Lester's KR, above, have been very supportive during the years of growth for our business.

Corvair/Sonex builder Dan Weseman brought his very supportive and fun wife Rachel to the party (they're in the photo below), and Warner Sportster/Corvair builder Dave Poirier brought his whole family to the event. With setting up the new hangar into a working shop and getting right back to work, it was a nice break to have the gang over for a night of fun.

Corvair College #5 Jan. 17-18, 2004

Corvair College #5 host Pat Panzera, left, with Grace Ellen in his Contact! magazine booth at Oshkosh 2003.


Corvair College #5 is set for Jan. 17-18, 2004, in Hanford, Calif. (near Fresno). Pat Panzera, editor of Contact! magazine, has generously offered to host this event. As always, the goal is to work on your engine. Substantial shop facilities will be available. I encourage people to come and learn. Keeping with my longstanding and unique to aviation tradition, the event is without charge. However, I do suggest RSVP'ing through the link to Pat's Web site. There will be running engines on hand, we will have our full catalog of parts available, plus dozens of other Corvair engine builders just like yourself will be participating. It will prove to be a great mix of learning and camaraderie, and I hope to see as many of you as possible there.

Thank you,


New Hangar

Grace Ellen, left, and Gus Warren next to the Giant Corvair Tri-motor Project Plane in the new Corvair Flyer hangar.

Stay tuned to this page for more details on the new digs.

Brodhead and Oshkosh 2003

Tom Brown, Unity, Wisc., delights the crowd with a flyby in his Corvair powered Pietenpol during the July 2003 Brodhead Pietenpol Fly In in Wisconsin. Click on the photo above to view a movie of Bill Knight flying Bernie Pietenpol's Corvair Powered Last Original at dusk during the Fly In.

We write this as we're traveling home after a whirlwind two-week trip during which we saw dozens and dozens of friends. As we told everybody in the issue of The Corvair Flyer we mailed before hitting the road, we headed to the annual Pietenpol Gathering in Brodhead, Wisc., and went on to a solid week at Oshkosh. Besides having a great time with friends as we always do, the trip was quite a success for promoting Corvair engines and meeting new builders.

The Corvair forum at Brodhead drew a standing room only crowd. If you were there, you know this is one of the better forums I've done. I was able to share a few humorous anecdotes, as we were among many friends.

Our first stop, Brodhead, is the laid back Pietenpol gathering where hundreds of fans and builders of this 75-year-old classic come together for a great weekend of camaraderie. We refer to Brodhead as the calm before the storm of the hectic nature of Oshkosh. We enjoyed the show along with a lot of old friends, including Ralph and June Carlson, Bud Smith, Doc Mosher, Skip Gadd, Harry Hooper, Jay Hoppenworth, Bill Knight, Dick Hartwig, Dennis Engelkenjohn, Mark Deacon, Del Magsam, Gene Beenenga and Martin Cirkl.

Son Cody, William Wynne, and dad Larry Hudson. The whole story of the Hudsons' completely overhauled Corvair is in the latest issue of The Corvair Flyer newsletter.

We spent some time with longtime Corvair pilot Jim Ballew, whose planes are featured at The Flying Corvair Planes Page. Jim has about 700 hours of flying Corvair time divided among his Piet and Davis DA-2. Tom Brown flew in his Corvair powered Piet and Bill Knight brought out Bernie's final Corvair Pietenpol, The Last Original, for everyone to carefully inspect. He flew it around to everyone's enjoyment on Saturday. Larry Hudson, the Featured Builder in the Summer 2003 issue of The Corvair Flyer, brought his completed motor to display at the Corvair forum I gave. It generated a lot of interest and served to answer many questions. We extend a big thank you to Gar Williams for organizing the forums at this classic event.

On to Oshkosh

Two hours north put us at Oshkosh. A number of old friends go out of their way each year to make Oshkosh much more comfortable and productive for us. The quick five that come to mind are Mary Jones, Doc and Dee Mosher, Charlie Becker and Pat Panzera. These people make everything happen smoothly for us at Oshkosh. If you enjoyed any of the five forums I gave, or any of the displays I had on site, a lot of the credit goes to these friends of ours. We can't thank them enough.

From left, Corvair/KR builder Mark Langford, Huntsville, Ala., William Wynne, and Brazilian Corvair builder Oswaldo Silva Filho outside the Contact! magazine booth at Oshkosh.

I had Corvair engines on display in both the Contact! magazine booth and the Pulsar Aircraft tent. Both generated a lot of interest and Conversion Manual sales. It looks like everyone who can is joining the Corvair builders camp, bringing more fun to the big club. Neil Hulin, our lead Corvair/601XL builder, was present all week and picked up the very first 601/Corvair motor mount that came out of the newest engine mount jig in my shop.

While standing at the Zenair booth, I was approached by a very familiar looking guy. He was checking out both sides of our Corvair powered T-shirt, emblazoned with the phrase "My ex wanted me to quit flying" on the back. In a quick anecdote he hinted that he'd faced the same decision point once. After feigning to know nothing about sheet metal construction, and flashing a smile, Burt Rutan went on his way.

We had many encouraging conversations with Sebastien Heinz of Zenair. They were very busy, but Nick Heinz made the time to come by and inspect the Corvair engine and parts in the Contact! magazine booth. While the engine is not on their approved list, the Heinz family is being very helpful in our efforts to develop the 601 installation.

Arnold Holmes was at Oshkosh all week, and told us of recent progress he's made on his Dragonfly/Vair. He stands a pretty good chance of being the first person to ever fly this combination.

The trio from Contact! magazine, clockwise from left in foreground, writer John Moyle, Publisher Pat Panzera, and volunteer George Willenbrock, enjoy the Homebuilders Dinner with noted aircraft designer Ed Fisher and Corvair Authority William Wynne, at right.

Pat Panzera, Hanford, Calif., had a lot of help in the Contact! booth from John Moyle of California and George Willenbrock of Kentucky. All of these guys were very helpful to us and brought a lot of minute to minute humor to the event. If you dropped by the booth and didn't get a chance to subscribe to the magazine of altnerative auto engines and experimentals, here's a link to Contact! magazine.

We went to the Homebuilders Dinner with noted aircraft designer Ed Fisher of Ohio. Ed showed us photographs of his two-place Zippy Sport. He feels the Corvair is the perfect match for it, not just for power and size, but philosophically also. One day, Ed stopped by the Contact! booth with his friend Tom Jones when Ray Parker also happened to be visiting. We had quite a jam session.

Fletcher Burns' 1/3 Corvair powered Minimax generated a lot of discussion in the ultralight area all week. For a prototype installation, it demonstrated exceptionally clean workmanship. This is a very promising adaptation of our favorite motor.

The KR contingent was well represented at Oshkosh. Mark Langford, Huntsville, Ala., and Mark Jones, Wales, Wisc., were there for several days. Jim Faughn, who flies on VW power, did an excellent job of hosting a very nice KR forum. I applaud his efforts to bring examples of affordable aviaiton to the venue where it's needed most, Oshkosh. Bob Vermeulen, famous producer of the KR Gathering videos, also was on hand. Oshkosh was our first chance to meet KR/Corvair builder Glenda McElwee, Orlando, Fla. It is not every day you get to meet women in aviation building their own aircraft and engine.

Introducing new front starter parts at Oshkosh engine forum. Also standing are Paul Pressler in welding hat and Neil Hulin in Kangaroo hat.

We spent a lot of time with Sonex people at Oshkosh. Del Magsam, New Richmond, Wisc., the first Corvair/Sonex builder to take flight, spent a few days there, as did Dan Weseman and his Uncle Bob, Green Cove Springs, Fla., and a number of others. Del and others interested in this combination tend to be in the extremely mechanically clever set, but they still have experienced a great number of mechanical challenges while working on the installation. This illustrates again why I do not promote the combination, but accept the fact that some people will want to do it anyway. Grace Ellen and I enjoy a good relationship with the Monnett family, and were invited to their Sonex builders party. We had a great time as always, and thank them for their hospitality.

As contributors to Kit Planes magazine, we were invited to their Writers Dinner. We spent a very enjoyable evening with the well known people who have produced the bulk of Kit Planes' articles during the past 20 years. It was also something of a change of command ceremony, as new Editor Brian E. Clark will be taking over from Dave Martin. Our hostess was publisher Cindy Pedersen. She's extremely knowledgeable about planes, people and trends in recreational aviation. I was duly impressed.

Gentleman aviator Marv Hoppenworth with William Wynne.

One happy meeting that sums up the whole experience was recognizing and meeting Jay's father, Marv Hoppenworth. At Brodhead, Jay had shared pictures and stories of his parents, who had met and gone flying in an L-4 on one of their first dates. A few days after Brodhead, we met the man himself at Oshkosh. Marv is truly old school EAA, and it was an honor and pleasure to meet the father who was so obviously his son's hero.

Wisconsin Bound Redux 2003

William Wynne up front and teaching about Corvair conversions to a nice crowd at his first series of Oshkosh forums during AirVenture 2002.

By popular demand, and because we enjoy doing so, we'll be returning to both the Pietenpol gathering at Brodhead, Wisc., and to AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisc., this summer, July-August 2003. My Corvair forum at Brodhead is 2 p.m. Saturday, July 26 (not Saturday, July 27, as misprinted in The Corvair Flyer. I apologize for the typo). At AirVenture I speak 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. in Engine Workshop Building #20 Tuesday, July 29, Thursday, July 31, and Sunday, August 3, and in the Aircraft Shopper Online Pavilion Building #5 from 7 to 8:15 p.m. Wednesday, July 30, and 10-11:15 a.m. Saturday, August 2. I am going through our registry and making phone calls to encourage owners of flying Corvair powered Piets to bring them to Brodhead this year. Of course, we won't need to call Bill Knight because N899X is based at Brodhead. Beyond this aircraft being an excellent display of how Bernie's engine conversion looks, the airframe itself warrants close study for any Pietenpol builder. I've seen endless Internet debates on how people think Bernie did it, but here's the real thing, so bring your cameras and tape measures. I'm also encouraging a number of Corvair owners to fly their aircraft, time and weather permitting, to AirVenture. Bob Lester made mention that he and Steve Makish would like to fly up in formation from South Florida in their Corvair powered KRs. Gary Coppen said he'll definitely fly up in his Corvair powered Skycoupe. Tom Brown said he'd probably be too busy to make Brodhead, but wanted to fly his Pietenpol to Oshkosh. We'll be contacting the rest of the gang to encourage them to bring their birds out. If you're still in the building stage, let me go out of my way to recommend that you attend these events. They're an excellent way to learn something firsthand, and are a great opportunity to make a few more friends among your fellow Corvair builders. If you have parts you'd like me to inspect, by all means bring them along. I'll be happy to take a look at them. Corvair College #4 participant Larry Hudson, featured with his son Cody in the news item on the College below, promised to bring his completed engine to Brodhead. I am planning to fly up in a Taylorcraft, and will be unable to bring the usual assembly tools and jigs. However, we are shipping ahead plenty of the smaller items including Conversion Manuals, videos, Hubs, Starter Kits, Distributors, Hybrid Studs, Safety Shafts, etc.

Those of you who attended my forums at AirVenture last year will remember that the Engine Workshop is in the same building as the wood workshop, just south of the NASA exhibit. And the Aircraft Shopper Online Pavilion is directly next door (to the north) of the Sporty's Pavilion on Knapp Road where we were last year. For more information on my Corvair forums at AirVenture, click Forum Presenter William Wynne's page. From there, you also can link to many more pages of AirVenture information.

Looking forward to seeing many of you soon again at these Wisconsin fly ins.

Corvair Forum Draws Large Crowd at SAA

Corvair power rules the sky as Tom Brown flies his Pietenpol, right, in formation with Bill Knight in the Last Original Pietenpol, left, to the delight of SAA members at the 2003 fly in at Frasca Field.

We just returned from one of the nicest fly-ins I can ever remember attending. The Sport Aviation Association's 2nd Annual Fly In at Frasca Field in Urbana, Ill., is really what grassroots aviation is all about. Grassroots aviation is an abused term these days, being applied to many things that it barely describes. But here we have the real thing. Paul Poberezny's core group of people who truly understand the camaraderie of recreational aviation all gathered in one spot for a commercial free weekend of nothing but airplanes and people.

William Wynne says goodbye to Tom Brown at the 2003 SAA Fly In. Onlookers beat a path around Brown's Corvair powered Pietenpol, and the Corvair powered Last Original parked next to it, to get a good look at fine craftsmanship. Tom recently recoverd his Piets' wings and left the fabric translucent in a top notch job.

Tom and Bill Fly In Their Corvair Powered Piets

Tom Brown and Bill Knight, from Unity and Brodhead, Wisc., respectively, flew down in formation with 12 cylinders of Corvair power humming. Tom's airplane is a 20-year-old Pietenpol with his Brown Aero logo on the fuselage. This aircraft was our Featured Corvair Flyer in the last issue of the newsletter. With 1,070+ hours on it, it's probably the highest time Corvair powered aircraft in the world. The airframe is a sight to behold in person, and is a tribute to the craftsmanship of the Brown family. Bill Knight's plane is the much famed Last Original. This very special aircraft is the last of more than 20 airplanes that Bernie Pietenpol built personally. Bill, his wife Sue, and partners Larry and Ilse Harmacinski acquired the craft from Andrew Pietenpol, Bernie's grandson. It is now based at the adopted home of Pietenpols, and the site of their annual convention, Brodhead, Wisc. Although I'm a longtime Pietenpol fan, this was the first time I'd ever seen the airplane in person. When you've spent thousands of hours poring over the plans and building parts for your own version of the flying creation of a man whom you will never meet, there is something very special about seeing a living, breathing piece of his life's work. I've seen Bernie's other aircraft on display at EAA headquarters in Oshkosh, Wisc., housed inside his very own hangar moved from Cherry Grove, Minn., to its current home at Pioneer Airport, but there is truly something very different about seeing his plane out in a field where you know it will be flying shortly. While I'm deeply grateful to the people with the forsight to preserve Bernie's legacy at Pioneer Airport, I must say the difference between even the greatest aircraft display and the same man's work flying overhead is akin to the difference between seeing an animal in the zoo and the same creature in the wild.

After sharing the forum, and politely answering an immense amount of questions (I believe the two Pietenpols were the most popular airplanes out of the 60 or so originals, classics and homebuilts), Bill and Tom fired up their birds, taxiied out and took off. They looped around the pattern for a wingtip to wingtip flyby at 50 feet before turning northward for home. There was not a true aviator in the crowd who watched the beautiful pass without longing to be up there with them.

Mark Langford, left, and William Wynne, right, are all smiles admiring the Corvair powered Last Original Pietenpol.

Enter The KR Contingent

We'd spoken to Mark Langford on the telephone prior to driving up, and he said he thought he might attend. We got a chance to spend a good bit of time with him, and it turned out he was having a really good time and taking a lot of his well known high quality photos. I'd be surprised if you couldn't find them by now at his http://home.hiwaay.net/~langford/corvair/ Web site. A great spot like Urbana has a way of renewing your effort on your project because you know exactly what you're going to do with it when it's done. I'm sure this visit had the same effect on Mark, and we'll see a renewed effort on the best known Corvair/KR project in the world. Bob Vermeulen, famous producer of the KR Gathering videos, also was on hand. Like us, this was his second year attending, a loyal supporter.

William Wynne's Corvair Conversion forum drew one of the largest crowds at the Sport Aviation Association Fly In. Thank you to all our old friends and new friends for attending.

The Corvair Forum

Grace Ellen and I gave a joint forum that was extremely well attended for an intimate fly in with inclement weather and a fantastic collection of planes outside. Drawing 80 people indoors for an hour constitutes a very well attended forum. This gave us a chance to pass around a lot of photos that Grace had printed of two dozen Corvair powered airplanes now featured at www.FlyCorvair.com/planes.html, and have a fairly good question and answer session. This was also the first public debut of the all new, low profile front starter setup. Although we had displayed the setup on two different engines at Sun 'N Fun eight weeks earlier, the pieces we had on hand at Urbana were from the first major production run made on CNC tooling. A number of guys who had been patiently waiting for this prodcution run took their parts home with them. By the time you read this, the second production run, a much larger batch, will be done and on our shelves. I'm sure these will be perennially popular items. Since they're now fully developed and flight proven, we're going to keep numerous sets on the shelf from now on for immediate delivery.

SAA founder Paul Poberezny, left, with William Wynne, right, at the 2003 SAA Fly In. We can't thank Paul enough for creating an organization that welcomes everyone who has a true love for grassroots aviation.

All in all we had a great time. I'd like to thank our old friends and the new ones we just met for making it possible, and I'd like to encourage you all to find out more about the SAA and see how it could be the organization you've been looking for in the wide world of aviation.

Enjoy true grassroots building and flying at the SAA Fly In
and catch William Wynne's Corvair Conversion Forum June 14, 2003

William Wynne teaching about Corvair conversions at the very first forum at the first ever Sport Aviation Association Fly In, at Frasca Field, Urbana, Ill., in June 2002.

I highly recommend all of you attend the Sport Aviation Association Fly In at Frasca Field in Urbana, Ill., June 13-15. We attended the inaugural event last year, and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. EAA founder Paul Poberezny founded the SAA in an effort to rekindle the original magic of the EAA. And he succeeded.

it is a relaxed event with none of the commercial activity which surrounds other aviation events. it is held on a beavtuful airport at a very nice facility. It is a great setting in which to meet other people who love the same things about building an flying which you do. There were more that 100 very nice aircraft there last year, a lot of unusual stuff you rarely see. well worth the trip.


Thank you.


Corvair College #4 a Rousing Sun 'N Fun Success

The new venue of Corvair College #4 at Sun 'N Fun 2003 in Lakeland, Fla., helped Corvair Authority William Wynne and crew share the Corvair movement with the largest number of people at any event to date. We met many Corvair builders in person for the first time, spent time with old friends, answered Corvair conversion questions from 9 a.m. till well after dark daily, put together a Corvair case, helped new Contact! magazine editor Pat Panzera in his Alternative Auto Engine magazine booth, and William also gave two forums, one of which is pictured below, in his longstanding Sun 'N Fun tradition.

We camped nightly on the Sun 'N Fun grounds at Lakeland Linder Regional Airport, with the one exception of spending the night with friends at their oasis away from home. The complete story is in the current Spring 2003 issue of The Corvair Flyer newsletter, mailed just after Sun 'N Fun. If you didn't subscribe at the show, as always you can send a check or money order for $20 (USD$25 for international subscriptions, including Canada) payable to William Wynne, P.O. Box 290802, Port Orange, FL 32129-0802, or use a credit card via PayPal at the Online Catalog.

In depth examination of subject at Corvair College #4

We met many builders and had a great deal of help to share a lot of information. It would be a long list if we named everybody, but we'll give a brief roundup of the highlights. Dave Vargesko of Malabar, Fla., and Merrill Isaacson of Mount Dora, Fla., both brought their engines to run daily at Corvair College. Dave built his own test stand, and Merrill used William's test stand to run the motors daily after the Sun 'N Fun forums ended (in order to let the speakers be heard). Even when not running, the engines drew a crowd and were valuable visual aids.

We answered Corvair questions non-stop 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily at Corvair College in the Engine Workshop Tent. Gus Warren, Port Orange, Fla., and Stuart Cirk and Stuart Hall, both of Lakeland, Fla., rounded out the regular crew. Stu Hall, below, left, with William Wynne, was a welcome sight throughout each day, reviving Corvair College classes with bottled water he supplies on behalf of the City of Lakeland.

Stu Hall, left, with twin William Wynne at Corvair College #4

Corvair builders Larry and Cody Hudson of Indiana brought their core motor to the event for hands on learning. They got right to work bright and early, cleaning parts.

Larry Hudson, center, and son Cody, right, take full advantage of Corvair College #4 by getting right to work on their project.

Friday was family day, with my parents Bob and Liz, and Dad's brother from New Jersey, Andy (Uncle Babe) visiting, as well as William's sister Melissa, her husband David, and their children Caroline and Matthew on vacation from Chicago. None of them work in aviation, but each separately told us they took home from Corvair College#4 at Sun 'N Fun 2003 a greater understanding of what being part of the aviation community is all about.

Family day at Corvair College #4, Sun 'N Fun 2003. From left in back, Uncle Babe, Grace Ellen, Liz, Melissa, William, David and Bob; in front, Matthew and Caroline.

Something everyone looks forward to each year is the Builders' Barbecue at Sun 'N Fun hosted by Fran and Dave Stroud of Canada. You can see Dave's Christavia at Dave Stroud's Christavia page on www.FlyCorvair.com. Each year, Dave and Fran motorhome down to Florida and set up camp at Sun 'N Fun. Dave marinates and barbecues tasty pork loin, and Fran serves the feast with a huge helping of hospitality. It's the one place we can sit down with builders from across the country (and Canada), kick back and enjoy.

Above, some of the 50+ attending the world famous Stroud Builders' Barbecue at Sun 'N Fun 2003. Later that same evening, Soob guru Chuck Condas, center, loosens up with William Wynne, left, and Clare Snyder, right, Pegzair/Corvair builder from Canada.

Manual owner #5000, Andrew Pietenpol, dropped by to meet William in person at Corvair College Friday. We'd corresponded and talked on the phone, but never met face to face. I about cried when Andrew said that his grandfather, Bernard H. Pietenpol, designer of the Pietenpol aircraft, and William were kindred spirits in creativity. "He would have adopted you," Andrew said.

Andrew Pietenpol, right, attends Corvair College #4 with William Wynne, left, and Grace Ellen at Sun 'N Fun 2003. You can learn about Andrew's plane at the Last Original II page on www.FlyCorvair.com. The last airplane Bernard H. Pietenpol built is at The Last Original page on www.FlyCorvair.com.

We thank everyone who participated in Corvair College #4. It takes a lot of people to present a successful event, and our heartfelt thanks goes out to you all. Since the new format was such a success, we've decided to return to Sun 'N Fun next year for Corvair College #5. We hope to see you all there.

Corvair Forums at Sun 'N Fun 2003


In keeping with a tradition established in 1997, I'll again be teaching forums on Converting Corvair Engines for Experimental Aircraft at Sun 'N Fun, April 2-8, 2003, in Lakeland, Fla. My forums will be at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 5, and Sunday, April 6, in Forum Tent #3, sponsored by Contact! magazine. I encourage all of you to attend not only to learn about Corvair conversions, but to meet fellow builders in person whom you may have only talked with by phone or e-mail. I've heard from several Conversion Manual owners who already are planning to bring their engines to Corvair College at Sun 'N Fun, where we'll be working daily in the Engine Building Tent across from the Forums Area beginning at 9 a.m. April 2-8. If you want to learn, you're welcome to come and observe. We'll also be running a Corvair engine daily in the nearby Engine Run-Up Area after the forums end. I look forward to this event every year, because it gives us a chance to see old friends and meet new ones. This year, we have the added excitement of several pilots flying their Corvair-powered aircraft to Sun 'N Fun. It's an event I encourage all of you not to miss.

Thank you.


William Wynne Writing for EAA's Experimenter Magazine

As many of you already know, in January 2003 I debuted as a monthly columnist for the Experimenter, the EAA's how-to magazine on aircraft building. The column is about how to get started building an airplane. My experience covers Pietenpols to Lancair IV-Ps, and I'm a firm believer in the Experimental Aircraft Association motto: "Learn, Build and Fly." I want to help the EAA with that goal, and I'm honored to have the opportunity to do so in the Experimenter. I encourage all of you who are building an airplane or aspiring to build to join the EAA and sign up for the Experimenter magazine. It's been a very rewarding experience for me, and it will be for you, as well.

Corvair College at Sun 'N Fun 2003

Due to popular demand, this year's Corvair College will be held at Sun 'N Fun, April 2-8, 2003, in Lakeland, Fla. The annual fly-in is the second largest in America. I have given forums there annually since 1997, and last year headed up the Engine Building and Run-up Area.

We will again have a Corvair engine to run on the test stand in the Engine Run Up Area. Since the engine building and run-up area is right across from the Forum Tents, we will be running the engine daily after the forums end.

Corvair College will begin daily in the Engine Building Tent at 9 a.m. We will have work bench space available for those who want to bring their Corvair parts and work on assembling your engines. If you'd like to learn and observe, just show up. I'll also be giving Corvair forums at 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday in Forum Tent #3, sponsored by Contact! magazine. If you'd like to do actual work on your motor, contact me in advance and we'll get organized to make the work progress smoothly. I'll have the case jig, cylinder tooling and limited hand tools. With enough preparation and care, you can leave Sun 'N Fun with a complete engine.

Thank you.


50+ Corvair Builders Attend San Antonio Corvair Junior College

Friends, More than 50 Corvair builders attended the Corvair Junior College in San Antonio, Texas, in January. I drove from Florida with Corvair test pilot Gus Warren in order to bring all the tools, jigs, parts, etc. we need to put together Corvair motors.

Saturday morning we got to work putting together a motor for the host of the event, Oscar Zuniga. Oscar prepped his motor by cleaning the heads, boring the cylinders, having the crankshaft threaded and painting the pushrod tubes. We had a good crowd watching assembly of the shortblock, many following along and making notes in their Conversion Manuals. Lew Mason opened up his shop for the duration to the crowd, which peaked at over 60, and we also thank Lew for helping Oscar with so many behind the scenes tasks.

Tailwind/Corvair builder Tom Cummings and his friend Leland Mitchell drove all night to arrive Saturday morning with Tom's engine on my mobile test stand. Tom has been a good friend of ours since he attended Corvair College #1 in my hangar in Spruce Creek. We're very thankful to Tom for hosting us at his house in Louisiana on our way to Texas.

We also demonstrated teardown of Dragonfly builder Dave Morris' engine. Dave found the engine in a salvage yard, and left the College with his engine completely dismantled and ready for overhaul. Although it was filthy on the outside, as typical with Corvair motors, it was a very good candidate for a rebuild.

Most of the builders attending were from Texas, but the Alamo College also drew builders from Colorado, Missouri, Illinois and even Mexico. The airframes represented included the Turbi, Breezy, E-racer, Vision and Hovercraft, as well as the more familiar Q-2, KR2 and Pietenpol.

I thank Oscar again for giving me the opportunity to help so many builders. I received a lot of feedback from builders who said the Mini College was just the inspiration they needed to jumpstart their projects. Keeping in touch with each other will also help keep you going.

Keep building and flying.


Wisconsin Bound


We've just returned from a productive trip to Illinois and Wisconsin. We visited EAA Headquarters in Oshkosh, and firmed up Corvair Conversion workshops 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. both Tuesday, July 23, and Sunday, July 28, in Engine Workshop Building 20, plus a forum 7 to 8:15 p.m. Thursday, July 25, in Sporty's Pavilion 6. Visit www.airventure.org for more information.

I'll also be returning to Brodhead, Wisc., for the annual Pietenpol fly-in. I'm looking forward to meeting many of the people who sent cards and letters during the past year. I'll be giving a forum 3 p.m. Saturday, July 20, at Brodhead.

If you haven't already joined the Sport Aviation Association, I'd highly recommend you do so. They hosted a wonderful first fly-in at Frasca Field in Urbana, Ill. About a hundred planes flew in for the event, with never more than six tricycle gear planes on the field at any time. More than 300 people took part in this inaugural event. It was an honor to be part of the start of something that captures the heart of aviation.

Looking forward to seeing many of you in Wisconsin.



Next Corvair Forum: Saturday, June 15, 2002,

at Inaugural Sport Aviation Association Fly-In


We're honored to be part of the first Sport Aviation Association Fly-In, June 14-16 at Frasca Field in Urbana, Illinois. Many of you saw Grace's article on carburetor ice in Contact! and the SAA's magazine, To Fly. She'll be talking about carb ice, and I'll give a forum on converting Corvair engines from 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. Saturday, June 15.

Paul Poberezny started the SAA to get back to the grassroots of homebuilding. His aim is to recapture all the best parts of the early EAA days. The fly-in is a gathering for fun and fellowship, with no air show activities or commercial exhibits. Rudy Frasca will open his Air Museum free to SAA members, and host a barbecue and hoedown Friday and Saturday nights.

If you want to catch a glimpse of the "Good old days of the EAA," this is your chance to be part of a close-knit club embarking on a new aviation adventure. Just $20 covers the entire event for SAA members and their families - no additional costs for camping or auto parking. Your donation gets you an SAA membership.

So fly in with a tent or drive in with a camper and we'll see you there. Urbana-Frasca Field is identifier C16, Unicom 122.8. For more information, visit www.sportaviation.org.



Aviation, Panhandle Style

Ed Perry of North Florida runs up the Corvair conversion he built for his Junior Ace. May 18, 2002.

May 19, 2002

It was a very busy weekend! Midnight on Friday, we packed up the truck along with the mobile engine run/display unit and hit the road for Quincy. The only flaw in this genius plan for our just-in-time arrival was that we'd been at the hangar since 8 a.m. Friday.

About 260 miles later, including one stop for a nap at a rest area, we arrived at EAA Chapter 445's 29th Annual Fun Fly-In. Initially, things did not look promising. It was raining and not a single airplane had flown in.

Things looked up immediately when we ran into Jake Jaks, Corvair College graduate No. 1. It had been a year since we'd seen Jake, and he's the kind of guy you wish was your next door neighbor instead of a resident of the other end of your state. Frank Smith, the Fly-In organizer, assured us things would go well. And true enough, the clouds parted, the airplanes flew in, and things got rolling by 11 a.m.

I spoke informally for several hours on the motor and fielded questions from a very sharp group of mechanical minded aviators there. Quincy is in northwest Florida, in a rural setting near Georgia. The people we spoke to were very mechanically inclined. Most of them had farming experience and some were A&Ps. These are not the kind of people who take their cars to the dealership for service. The mechanical simplicity and the do-it-yourself nature of the Corvair conversion appealed to them. We sold a handful of Manuals and invited all to visit our shop in Daytona. We packed up and left about 3 p.m., promising to return next year. It was a great honor to be the first guest speaker ever invited to this event.

To get the most out of this road trip, we then headed to Ed Perry's airstrip near Lake City, Fla. Although Ed and his wife, Elizabeth, have been to our place, we'd never been to theirs. Jake Jaks forewarned us that it was a long way out in the country.

Jake was right, but it was well worth the trip. We spent a couple hours visiting and checking out Ed's Corvair-powered Junior Ace. We ran it up, and went through a bunch of technical details. Ed's been exploring a whole bunch of mechanical ideas in the past year. He now has the installation sorted out to his satisfaction. He's flown it down the length of the runway, and says it has great acceleration. After a mechanical detail clean-up, he'll begin regular flight testing.

The Perrys took us out to dinner and showed us great hospitality. Ed also made a point of proposing a Corvair Fly-In at his airstrip. A wonderful idea at this beautiful rural Florida setting.

We concluded our whirlwind tour of the Florida Panhandle several hours later. Special thanks to our new friends in Quincy and our old friends Jake Jaks and the Perrys.


William Wynne delivering his latest patented quote at EAA Chapter 445's Quincy Fun Fly-In: You can't write a check to get into the Corvair-powered flight club. You have to build your way in.

Corvair Forum at Quincy Fly-In May 18th


This weekend we travel to Quincy, Fla., for EAA Chapter 445's 29th Annual Quincy Fun FLY-IN. The Chapter invited us to give a forum on Corvair conversions 10 a.m. Saturday. They had several Chapter members request that I visit to teach about Corvair-powered flight, so I'm honored to accept their invitation.

They've got a day of great activities scheduled, starting with an 8 a.m. Pancake Breakfast, Young Eagles flighs 9 a.m. to noon, military displays, gliders, skydivers and ultralights. Camping is available on the field. Visit www.eaa445.org for more information.

Quincy, 2J9, Unicom 122.7, is just northwest of Tallahassee, near the Georgia border and a couple hundred miles from Alabama. I'd like to see as many old and new friends as possible, so y'all come.



Sun 'N Fun Success

From left, two friends, William Wynne, and crew Gus Warren, Merrill Isaacson and Dave Vargesko with Dave's Corvair conversion in the engine run area at Sun 'N Fun. The Corvair was the first engine to fire up in the workshop area, ran every day and closed the show.

April 2002

I extend a big thank you to everyone who helped with Corvair demonstrations at Sun 'N Fun, especially Terry Bailey, Dave Vargesko, Gus Warren, Merrill Isaacson, Stuart Cirk, Gary Coppen and Mick Myal of Contact! magazine. Mick organizes the engine forums, and has been a loyal supporter of my Corvair Conversion efforts. He spent most of Sun 'N Fun at the Contact! booth. If you didn't get a chance to subscribe there, you can visit the Web site www.nonprofitnet.com/contact.

Dragonfly builder Terry Bailey gave daily tours of the Corvair's intake and exhaust systems. Corvair builders Dave Vargesko, Gus Warren, Merrill Isaacson, Stuart Cirk and Gary Coppen each spent at least two days helping us run Dave's engine on the test stand and answer Corvair conversion questions. They also helped a great deal during Sun 'N Fun preparations.

Monday's forum featured Corvair success stories. Steve Makish flew his KR up from Boca Raton, Fla., and gave a good comparison of flying with a Corvair vs. the Subaru previously on his plane. Bob Lester, a hangar neighbor of Steve's, gave a progress report on converting his KR from Subaru to Corvair power. Mark Langford of Alabama also shared the latest on his conversion progress. And Dave Stroud of Canada told the standing room only crowd what it's like to fly a Corvair-powered Christavia. That night, Dave and Fran also hosted a barbecue at their camp site for engine builders. Many thanks to both of them for a home-cooked meal away from home.

We appreciate all our old friends taking the time to stop by. This is a big part of what draws us to airshows. It was good to meet so many new friends, too. The camaraderie among Corvair builders is valuable to all involved.

Thanks again for making Sun 'N Fun 2002 a resounding success!

Reserve your prop hub now   -   Corvair College coming up!

Dave Vargesko's engine after build up and test-stand break in at William's hangar. See Dave's engine in person at Sun 'N Fun 2002 April 7-13.


Sun 'N Fun 2002 at Lakeland Linder Airport in Florida April 7-13 is our next big event. I'll be converting Corvairs daily in the engine building tent. These will be hands-on sessions, so bring your parts and wear work clothes. I'll also be giving Corvair forums for my sixth consecutive year in the nearby Contact! magazine Auto Engine Round-up Tent #3 at 1 p.m. Monday and 10 a.m. Wednesday. We look forward to seeing you there!

I'm getting another prop hub order ready. The hub, along with the hybrid studs and safety shaft, secure your propeller to the Corvair crankshaft. These $299 aluminum hubs are very nicely crafted on a CNC lathe, then anodized. This batch will be ready in time for Sun 'N Fun. They historically sell out shortly after they arrive, so drop a check in the mail and e-mail me at WilliamTCA@aol.com  to reserve your hub now! Your check won't be cashed until we ship your hub.

If you're unable to get to Sun 'N Fun, consider attending Corvair College in my hangar outside Daytona Beach, Fla., during Memorial Day weekend. Engine work traditionally begins Thursday and continues through Tuesday. Bring your engine parts and materials and be ready to build. We're limiting attendance to 100 people.

This is a free event, but I do ask anyone who intends to build up an engine from scratch to help pay the extra hands in the shop.



Join CORSA! Print this coupon, mark it "Corvair Flyers," and mail it today!


William is installing a 164cid on a SkyCoupe in preparation for Sun 'N Fun April 2002. We'll all be in Lakeland for the fly-in. William is slated to give his seventh annual engine forum series, for Contact! magazine. He'll also be volunteering in the nearby engine building tent. Bring your Corvair parts and prepare to "Learn, Build and Fly!"

In the meantime, join CORSA - the Corvair Society of America was formed more than 30 years ago for the preservation and enhanced enjoyment of the Corvair automobile. As a car enthusiast club, it has thousands of members, mostly in the United States, and is a lot like the Experimental Aircraft Association in that it has a national organization, along with local chapters and a national convention.

Its monthly publication, The CORSA, is a beautiful color magazine with technical information, advertisements and private sale items (like core motors). The Corvair Society of America also has an excellent members only Web site, which has been a source of numerous bargains.

William Wynne recently started a new chapter of CORSA called Corvair Flyers. The Flyers are technically a "special interest group" (chapters normally cover a geographic area). Membership in CORSA is available now at the discounted rate of $25 per year. There are no dues for the Corvair Flyers, as the newsletter will be sent by e-mail. You can print and mail the above coupon in to CORSA and you'll begin receiving the CORSA magazine right away! Make sure you note on the membership coupon that you're a Corvair Flyer. The national convention is in June in Flagstaff, Ariz., this year and William plans on attending.

Happy building and flying!

Here we are on our trip from Spruce Creek, Fla., to Brodhead, Wisc., and on to Oshkosh for AirVenture 2000. William and good friend Arnold Holmes of Kansas Composites flew William's Corvair-powered Pietenpol to Brodhead for the annual Pietenpol type gathering Aug. 3-5. As many of you know, Brodhead bills itself as the antidote to Oshkosh, with a beautiful grass field and no commercial activity. The barnstormers greatly enjoyed themselves, giving about 40 people rides Waldo Pepper-style during their two-day stay. They're pictured above with, at left, free riders Mark Chrissman and Susan (their dog Clarence may take flight at the next fly-in), Arnold in the center, crew member Grace Ellen, William, and the trusty Corvair-powered Piet.

Daytona Beach EAA Chapter 288 Secretary Grace Ellen drove down to Brodhead with her Oshkosh hosts Doc (alumnus of the first Corvair College) and Dee Mosher Saturday. She flew back to Oshkosh with Arnold in the Pietenpol, giving William more time to visit with new and old friends and family. She enjoyed the ride so much, in fact, that after a few more days cavorting at Oshkosh, Grace Ellen flew back to Florida in the Pietenpol with Arnold. Three more days of pure barnstorming fun at cornstalk-tassle level. William had three hours of fun flying back with AirVenture Cup Champion Jim Rahm in his Lancair IVP.

Please let us know about fly-ins in your area. Look forward to seeing you on the airfield.

The Corvair Authority

The intrepid aviators upon their triumphant return to Spruce Creek, Florida.

Corvair College May 26-30, 2000

After absorbing all the new information Sun 'N Fun 2000 had to offer, William decided to take the best parts of the learning experience and incorporate them into his own Corvair College. He invited all Conversion Manual owners to bring their engines and parts to his hangar for a marathon workshop and building session. Spring 2000 marked the inaugural session of Corvair College. It was not only fun, but productive as well. All Manual owners are invited to the fall session. Check this page for details. And now, without further delay, here's what you missed, in the words of one of our favorite students, pictured at left, below, with William at the Corvair Hangar in Spruce Creek.

Tom Cummings' tale of the Inaugural

Corvair College of Aviation Knowledge

The first session of Corvair College began approximately 8:00AM on Friday, May 26, 2000, with the first arrivals being Doc Mosher, Jacob Jaks and myself.

Numerous visitors came by during the week including Mark Langford.

We discussed our airframes our engines would power. Doc's is a Pietenpol, Jacob's is a Pober Junior Ace, Mark has a KR2S, and I am building a Tailwind.

The education was of a basic nature, as we had not built engines before. This was why the college was so valuable to us and was fortunate to have. So, if some of you experienced builders find this post very basic, please bear with me in knowing that the basics are one of the purposes of the college.

We made our introductions, met William, Kelvin and Grace. If it were not for Grace, we would have perished of thirst for sure as she made countless errands seeing that we had enough Cokes and ice.

Then we got set up in William's hangar, each of us on a bench, table or workstand. Parts were unloaded as needed or stored underneath the workspace.

All of us were at different stages of progress on preparing our engines for assembly. That is, the amount of prep work already performed at home. One of my objectives was to assemble my case halves under the supervision of William and Kelvin and, at least, have the crank and cam in and test for rotation. (And I had other objectives under my sleeve, which I will describe later.) I had lots of prep work remaining to be done. I cleaned the rust from the heads studs the first morning.

One task was to have our cases thoroughly examined to ensure they were usable. This included verifying sealing surfaces, lifter bores, no cracks, smooth bearing and cylinder seating surfaces, studs, threads, etc. and looking for any defects that would eliminate using a case. Later, William demonstrated installing a head stud in some of the cases. We all thoroughly cleaned the bearing surfaces and oil passages and double-checked everything. All this took a lot of time.

Crankshafts and camshafts were examined. I was interested in what I refer to as "hard assembly" items, which for a novice can mean operations such as pressing cam gears and wrist pins. (Items that require special tools, jigs, fixtures or techniques to assemble.) Familiarizing myself with how assemblies are supposed to feel or not supposed to feel like when properly or improperly performed was important, also. Yes, I was looking to gain experience. Installing the cam gear on the camshaft was my next operation.

And, over in another corner, was another neophyte - sandblasting some pushrod tubes in prepping them for painting - which we all did. And at another table, William and Kelvin demonstrating the all important operation of Plastigauging a crankshaft. No shortcuts were taken here. No defects were to be accepted, as William showed when we rechecked a crank that we "students" thought might be okay or didn't know the difference. We learned it doesn't hurt to have to do something over, like break a case back down, to ensure a quality assembly - very conscientious, I noticed - not to accept something that is unacceptable. This is good "building philosophy" being exhibited, which William mentioned in his manual.

And another procedure observed was how clean all components needed to be before assembly. We went through a lot of cans of Jet Spray to ensure clean cranks, cases, cams, everything. Jet Spray works well as a final clean rinse solvent with just enough spray pressure. Once applied, the components were ready clean.

Other activities included welding the four extension tabs around the oil pan where the engine mount bolts protrude through the exterior lip on the pan. And for those of us who could not weld, others would help. And we in turn rendered assistance in areas they needed. Good camaraderie was exhibited throughout the entire week in this manner. Other items we made were modifying the oil filler tubes, making the top covers, modifying the oil filter accessory piece, and trying to fabricate all the "odds and ends" needed to complete a conversion. William and Kelvin even replaced a defective exhaust stub on one head. Outstanding.

Each day there would be time out for lunch - how the time can fly when you're having fun. We'd go up the highway to one of the many good restaurants in the area - every day. We did not go hungry. And we didn't lose any weight, either. At the end of the evening, dinner was not hard to find. This was a good location to have such an event. Then it might be back to the shop, retire for the evening, or go relaxing out. We stayed at a Holiday Inn with good rates and location.

Next day, back to something else that needed attention. Jacob's engine was now growing more parts! His rod journals were also "Plastigauged," and he started checking the ring end gaps and ring side clearances. Kelvin demonstrated this and how to install the rings on the pistons, and then install the pistons into the cylinders.

As Jacob's engine was progressing, I started cleaning some old heads I had brought so I could get William to determine if they were worth rebuilding. I knew I wasn't going to get them rebuilt at college, but at least I could get them checked out. And I had William look at my original crank to see if it was worth turning to .010 someday - but one engine at a time, please!

And Doc, he was using the air compressor, grinding some nice smooth edges on his end cover he was making. And before you knew it, you'd see more cylinders protruding from Jacob's engine case. Jacob's project was going good. You'd notice how his parts boxes were getting more empty and the engine was getting more heavy!

Time out during each day, we were invited over to some hangars of the Spruce Creek airpark residents. There was American Affordable Aircraft building a Vision - cool. And across the taxiway was a Lancair equipped with a Chevy V8 and redrive - very hitech and complicated looking - but it flies! It flies! The gentleman there also builds exotic instrument panels - works of art.

Another hangar, Mr. Phillips', had a Great Lakes Special - beautiful. And I think an RV or a Glastar - I forget (editor's note: actually a Swearingen SX-300, but you never know what you'll find in Mr. Phillip's hangar). And we saw a Pitts on the field, too.

And on another visit, I saw a fuselage of a Wittman Tailwind being restored - looks just like the right size for a Corvair engine and it got my blood going. Lots of representative homebuilt aircraft are located at Spruce Creek airpark.

Then back to the shop and check on them heads. With some more cleaning they would be ready to disassemble. Lots of corrosion. And William showed us his machine for determining a distributor's advance curve. I believe he checked Jacob's distributor out if I am not mistaken. I was busy painting my new .030 over cylinder fins by then. Used a 50/50 mix of flat black oil based enamel paint and gasoline - supposed to offer rust protection and allow the fins to cool and the paint not flake off - well we will see. That took a long time with a paintbrush. The paint is from Wal-Mart, both Plasticote and Rustoleum are available. I used Plasticote because it is faster drying.

And the hybrid studs had arrived as Mark Langford already photo'd and I now have mine for when I install my hub. Countless small parts which all add up to an engine were addressed, and we saw an example of the copper washers used to improve the sealing of sparkplugs, and also the large hex nut that installs on the safety bolt. Isn't it aggravating when one small part halts the process? Like in the poem that says: "For want of a nail a horse was lost."

The day Mark Langford visited, he caught me on camera at the hydraulic press, installing my wrist pins. That was an uncomfortable operation for me due to my lack of experience. But William was there and coached me through it and now I have that item accomplished. More experience more training! I would not have attempted it by myself.

That operation out of the way, I stored the piston/rod assemblies back into their boxes until I installed the rings. Next, I disassembled those heads I wanted to check out. Got all the valve stem keepers off without them, the retainers, or the springs ricocheting across the shop. Then I labeled everything and put them into small organized containers for reference. The guides turned out okay with very little if any side play. And the seats were not very bad. So it looks like I have an extra set of rebuildable heads. These will get a valve job and new valves someday.

And back at Jacob's project, there was a head going on the cylinders! There was going to be an engine built for sure at this Corvair College. And at this point we were shown how to install the lifters and the nicely painted pushrod tubes and "O" ring seals. Heads were torqued according to Finch's book - not the Chevy shop manual. Brand new pushrods and rocker arms assemblies followed.

We also got introduced to the different sealants used and how and where to apply them. We used the manuals and other reference materials. Some of us were shown how to use a micrometer, a torque wrench, and the welding torch.

I got my camshaft in the case, verified the endplay, then in went the crank - yahoo! And I finally got to torque the case shut. It was great, kinda like an exciting countdown: 15, 25, 35, 45 lbs. Except counting upwards! And when I was done, the crank and cam would still rotate just fine - yahoo again. I felt like stopping and celebrating then but I just kept on working on something else. It was the time and the place to get a lot of things done that I had not had time for before.

Doc had gotten his head studs painted and completed his pan modification. He also had finished the modification for the rear cover for the use of a rear starter. He had so many beautifully clean parts on his bench that it looked like you could serve dinner on them. Dinner? Oh yeah, dinner, we had worked so late we had forgotten about dinner. Excitement, I guess. So, yeah, well, we all went to dinner - late.

Didn't matter; because the next morning, it was back to the shop again. (It was great to have a well-equipped shop to go to every morning.) And that was the day when Jacob's engine finally came together. And all his parts boxes were empty - all of them. He had the cleanest engine I have ever seen, too. He had used the stock top cover with its top surface removed and filled it with a nice piece of aluminum welded in. It takes the flat-top look out of the top of the engine. Wait till you see his pictures. And the front and rear covers were finally on, too. And we were all just as proud of his engine as he was because we were there and learned from it and had participated in a successful assembly.

Visitors continued to come by - even on the last day. The first question they'd ask was: "Why did you select a Corvair?" So we would tell them. It was interesting to know that some of them came back several times to see how the prep work and engines were coming along. They were getting interested in the Corvair, too.

We all got a tremendous amount of work accomplished and learned techniques best assimilated by observing and performing oneself. Such is another purpose of Corvair College.

Corvair College is where one can learn the basics of Corvair assembly and receive assistance in each area of the conversion. And the experienced builders can benefit attending as well by the contributions they can make working with others, conveying their experience, contributing to the overall success of the Corvair engine as a reliable power plant in the homebuilt arena, and meeting other builders.

A heartfelt thanks goes out from the first attendees of Corvair College to William, Kelvin and Grace for their efforts and hospitality which made the event a successful one.

Tom Cummings

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