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EAA's Light Plane World
  ISSUE 5, APRIL 2010      
From the Editor
Recharge Your Batteries Now
By Dan Grunloh, Editor, Light Plane World
April is here, and the air show and fly-in season has begun. It’s time to get out of the clubhouse or hangar, go to a fly-in, and get excited about another year of aviation. Talking about flying, reading about flying, and watching videos all winter aren’t enough to inspire you to get out and find your own adventures.  Dan Grunloh
You need to hear the real sound of propellers biting the air and see the flash of colors as the planes go by. According to the International Council of Air Shows, about 12 million people attend 350 air shows in North America each year. In spite of a slow economy, or perhaps because of it, attendance has been rising about 15 percent per year at most air shows in recent years. As the cost of vacation trips, amusement parks, and sporting events increase, the air show becomes a bargain. A similar pattern was witnessed during the 1980-1982 and 1990-1991 recessions. Read more
Green Acres
Sun 'n Fun 1982 Memories
Chuck Slusarczyk I expected Sun ’n Fun Fly-In 1982 to be an action-packed week as I debuted the CGS Hawk, but little did I know just how much action and controversy were in store for us. We were going to introduce the CGS Hawk for the first time to the public, foot launching was rapidly disappearing from all ultralight models, and Part 103 was just around the corner. Read more
Light Plane News
It's Never Too Late - Flight for the Human Spirit
Combs-RemosOn April 5, Michael Combs took off for an ambitious cross-country tour of all 50 states in a Remos GX light-sport aircraft (LSA) he has named Hope One. The flight plan has 136 legs which he hopes to complete in 40 flying days, setting a number of records in the process. The total distance flown will be 19,400 miles. The Remos will be shipped to the island of Hawaii and put on a trailer for the trip to Alaska. The attempt is even more impressive because he's a newly minted sport pilot with about four months flying time since passing his flight test. What could possibly motivate someone to take on such a task? It was his discovery that a lifelong dream of flying would finally come true, thanks to the Sport Pilot category. Read more
InterPlane Assets for Sale
InterPlane SkyboyInterPlane was formed in 1992 with the two-seat, Czech-built trainer known as the Skyboy as its first product. All assets including the rights for the Skyboy aircraft, drawings, calculations, tools, molds, and an inventory of spare parts for Skyboy (located in North Carolina) are to be sold. InterPlane hasn't produced aircraft since mid-2008. It's estimated that there are 75 to 100 Skyboys flying throughout the world. Read more
Surviving the Wires Environment
Plane in wiresHelicopter Association International (HAI) has announced the release of a 25-minute online aviation wire-strike safety awareness video, "Surviving the Wires Environment." It's aimed squarely at the helicopter community but would be very helpful for all pilots. Read more
Getting Started in Ultralighting Webinar Coming in May
Join us Tuesday, May 8, 2010, for our next EAA Webinar with EAA staff member Timm Bogenhagen who will introduce you to the wonderful world of ultralights. Tim will discuss what every prospective pilot should know before flying or buying and ultralight. Sign up now

Since EAA began its Webinar series, viewers have been treated to a wide range of topics that cover the diverse interests of EAA members. Presentations on the B-17, diabetes, your medical certificate, the newest design from Sonex, and improvements to the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh site have been quite popular. Visit the EAA Webinar page at for more upcoming presentations.

Around-the-World Gyrocopter Reaches Pyramids of Giza
Norman SurplusNorman Surplus, an autogyro pilot from Larne, Northern Ireland, has landed in Giza, Egypt, 12 days into his trip around the world. He flew along the English coast in-formation with four other gyrocopters before crossing the English Channel. He made fast work of the European continent before crossing the Mediterranean Sea via the island of Crete. His next destination is Saudi Arabia across the Mediterranean Sea. The plan is to cover at least 300 miles per day and to be back home in Ireland by mid-July. Read more
CAFE Electric Aircraft Symposium This Month
The future of electric aviation will be discussed, revealed, and conceived at the 4th Annual Comparative Aircraft Flight Efficiency (CAFE) Electric Aircraft Symposium to be held April 23-24 in the Sonoma region of California. Designers, inventors, engineers, and anyone interested will have the opportunity to attend lectures presented by an international faculty of experts on topics related to electric, hybrid, and bio-fuel aircraft. Read more
Second Chantz is Back!
Second ChantzJohn Dunham of Second Chantz Aerial Survival Equipment Inc. announced the reincarnation of his company, which will manufacture and distribute recovery systems for most light-sport aircraft, plus perform repacking, updating, and scheduled service for ballistic recovery systems from any manufacturer. Additionally, Second Chantz will distribute new ballistic recovery systems, such as the Magnum parachute system, which are manufactured by a Czech company, and will bring back its patented A.I.R.-equipped recovery devices for hang gliding and paragliding pilots. Read more
Glider Flight Among 'Most Memorable' Records of 2009
SparrowHawkThe best aviation records of 2009 are being remembered by the National Aeronautic Association (NAA). Of the six records highlighted, three of them were set by EAA members including James Payne, EAA 240618, who flew a Windward Performance SparrowHawk ultralight glider a distance of 623 miles. Read more
FAA Ends Ban of Pilots on Antidepressants
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced Friday it is changing its longstanding ban on use of anti-depressants by pilots. Beginning April 5 the FAA will consider the special issuance of a medical certificate to pilots who are taking medication for mild to moderate depression, conditions that now bar them from all flying duties. Read more
Around the Patch

King for a Day
King for a Day
It was an absolutely beautiful fall day in Alaska’s Interior. Blue sky as far as the eye could see! I jumped in my pickup truck and headed out to the airfield in North Pole. En route, I couldn’t escape the feeling of excitement in anticipation of what the day had in store. Read more

Emergency Landings on Roads - No
I read with some alarm the March 2010 article in the EAA Light Plane World newsletter about pilots who recently landed on highways. As always, I was glad they pulled it off and no one was hurt. I also heard the little voice in my mind asking, "What were they thinking?" The highway or any road is the last place a pilot should want to land an aircraft. However, I had listened to numerous inexperienced pilots proclaim they would go for the road. This mindset baffled me, but after thinking about it, I began to understand. Read more
Your First Flight Lesson
Helen WoodsI know of no pilot, no matter how many years she's been flying or hours she's accrued, who won't break into a huge grin when asked to recall her first flight. A pilot's first flight is always one of the highlights of her flying career. Read more
Transition Flight
TransitionPedestrians view the winter-to-spring landscape change from a common perspective – the ground. Pilots can fly far above the terrain, some so high that the ability to experience seasonal change is lost. However, there’s an alternative perspective, one available to a select group of pilots: the low and slow aircraft (light sports, ultralights, and powered parachutes [PPCs]). These pilots view what is happening in the environment below from an altitude of only a few hundred feet. Read more
Videos from the light plane world
Video Video
The Golden Age of Ultralight Flyers Holly Dolly microlight
Submit light plane videos that you just had to watch again; and probably forwarded to your friends. Send them to
Featured Audio
A-B Accident Rate Stats Hide Complex Factors
In February, AOPA released its annual Nall Report, a summary of accidents trends and factors for general aviation. A portion of the report focused on amateur-built aircraft and showed an increase in accidents for the category. EAA Radio's Fareed Guyot talked with EAA Vice President of Industry and Regulatory Affairs Earl Lawrence, who says that, although there is a wide variance in the actual numbers, some amateur-built areas need attention. Listen to the interview
Featured Photo Gallery
Ultralights and Light Planes of
Sun 'n Fun 2005-2008

Photo gallery

Sun 'n Fun 2010 is next week and what better way to herald its approach than to see some snapshots of aircraft seen at the fly-in from the light plane world. View the gallery

Why is it necessary to warm up my two-stroke engine prior to flight? Read the answer

Powered Parachute
 How do you flare a powered parachute (PPC) to lower the descent rate?  Read the answer

Weight Shift Trikes
 Without a tail like an airplane, how does the trike maintain yaw stability? Read the answer

Fixed-Wing Airplane
 Does weight affect the glide ratio of an airplane? Read the answer

Powered Paraglider
 Why doesn't a powered paraglider (PPG) have a rigid or inflatable structure to prevent a canopy collapse?  Read the answer

From the archives
From the ArchivesMeet Chuck Slusarczyk
EAA Experimenter
February 2000

Chuck Slusarczyk, never really stopped playing with models. As a teenager, he won several national competitions, which would serve him well during his time at NASA. And his love of models would carry over to man-carrying kites and the growth of the ultralight movement. Chuck was one of the first to offer a three-axis ultralight that flourished in the early days of Part 103,  and propelled him to the EAA Sport Aviation Hall of Fame. Read the article

Poll Question
Q. What is your level of flying experience?

- I've never flown in an ultralight or light plane.
- I am a pre-solo student pilot.
- My logbook has less than 100 hours as pilot in command.
- I've flown between 100 and 1,000 hours.
- My logbook has more than 1,000 hours flight time.
- I've flown hundreds or thousands of hours but don't keep a logbook.

Vote now

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