William Wynne

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

Wisconsin 2003

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.

Our Corvair engine in the Pulsar booth at Oshkosh.

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.

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

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.

Oshkosh 2013 With FlyCorvair.com

Oshkosh 2010 With FlyCorvair.com

Oshkosh 2009 With FlyCorvair.com

Oshkosh 2008 With FlyCorvair.com

Oshkosh 2007 With FlyCorvair.com

Oshkosh 2006 With FlyCorvair.com

Oshkosh 2005 With FlyCorvair.com

Oshkosh 2004 With FlyCorvair.com

Oshkosh 2000 With FlyCorvair.com

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