Belite Airplanes and New Avionics at SnF

Belite Aircraft will have two of its three models of FAR Part 103-compliant aircraft on display at the Sun 'n Fun Fly-in at Lakeland, Florida, April 13 to 18. The Belite Superlite and Trike will be sporting some new features, including several modifications to the tricycle gear version of the aircraft in response to customer inputs, the company says. You can see the airplanes at the Light Aircraft Display area, Space LP35. Continue reading "Belite Airplanes and New Avionics at SnF"

Wicks to Give Away HDTV at SnF

Wicks Aircraft Supply has announced that it will award a Vizio 32-inch LCD HDTV set to a customer at the Sun 'n Fun Fly-In, which runs April 13  to 18. Anyone can stop by the Wicks booth and register to win. The booth will be located in Building D, spaces 1, 2 and 3. It is not necessary to be present at the time of the drawing, which will take place after the show. Wicks will ship the set to the registered winner.

For more information, visit www.WicksAircraft.com or call 800/221-9425.

Sirius LSA Available for Demo Flights

Sportair USA, distributor for the Sirius LSA from TL Ultralight of the Czech Republic, has announced that the first aircraft is available for demo flights in North Little Rock, Arkansas. The first delivery will occur at the Sun 'n Fun Fly-In this April.

The Sirius is a two-seat, carbon-fiber composite design powered by the 100-hp Rotax 912 ULS engine. It also features a GRS whole-plane ballistic parachute. Continue reading "Sirius LSA Available for Demo Flights"

Mistral Rotary Moves Closer to Certification

A step forward in what has been viewed as a stop-start development program for the Mistral rotary aircraft engine was announced today. The company says preparations are underway to begin flying the three-rotor engine on a Maule MX-7 testbed in Florida.

"We are extremely pleased with the progress that our engineering and development team has made in recent months on the G-300 engine,” said Philippe Durr, CEO of Mistral Engines. “We have the engine mounted on a Maule MX-7 flight test aircraft and it is currently undergoing ground power tests at our U.S. base in DeLand, Florida.” Continue reading "Mistral Rotary Moves Closer to Certification"

Commentary: Homebuilt Aircraft Safety Picture Blurred by Bad Data

When a Lancair IV-P lost power, began leaking oil over the windscreen and eventually landed on a Florida beach, the subsequent crash set off a surprising chain of events. The pilot's calm under fire has been overshadowed by the freakish outcome of the forced landing; a runner on the beach was struck and fatally injured by the Lancair.

In the specialist press, the pilot was celebrated for keeping the airplane under control and putting the Lancair onto the Hilton Head beach instead of into a parking lot—potentially injuring many more souls—or into the ocean, which might have had dire consequences for him and his passenger. We pilots realized just how challenging such a situation can be: little to no forward visibility in an airplane that descends quickly and lands fast, and no power at all to help moderate the descent. Continue reading "Commentary: Homebuilt Aircraft Safety Picture Blurred by Bad Data"

Kitplanes Newsline Launched

Spring has sprung, and airshow season is upon us. Even if you can’t make Sun ‘n Fun this year, follow all the action on our updated news section on kitplanes.com. Called Newsline, our fresh approach to current events will bring you right into all the major events this year with breaking news, video feeds, and informed commentary. Easier on the eyes and easier to navigate, Newsline also provides an opportunity for reader feedback. Check it out today.