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...a web log of developments in Sport Pilot/Light-Sport Aircraft
Zigolo Cracks the China Market as Part 103!
By Dan Johnson, July 23, 2014

Chip Erwin flies Zigolo at Sun 'n Fun 2014 using electric power. Read our pilot report article by British writer Dave Unwin.
I didn't see this one coming. Maybe you didn't either? In the new millennia gold rush represented by companies either being bought by Chinese businesses or gaining investment from wealthy Chinese business people or by setting up shop to sell in China (or even Cessna's ill-fated effort to have their Skycatcher manufactured in China), one element I've never heard of is Part 103 in China. This least-regulated-of-all aviation category is solely an American thing, isn't it? Well ... yes and no. Germany has opened the door to a Part 103-like development in that country under the 120-kilogram class (using a number that is 264 pounds or very similar to Part 103's 254-pound empty weight limit). England has their SSDR class (SSDR being the abbreviation for Single Seat De-Regulated). Despite following those developments, I've never heard a word about China and any less-regulated sector.

Zigolo on display at the Jingmen airshow in China.
"The first Zigolo in China was introduced to the public in that nation on July 17th at the Jingmen Airshow," reported representative Chip W. Erwin. The example was supplied in kit form by Aeromarine-LSA of Lakeland, Florida and Chip assembled it in just three weeks. Erwin, many will recall, was the main man behind the SportCruiser that ranks high in the U.S. market. After getting pushed out of the company he founded by an aggressive investor, he established a new enterprise in China. So, the following announcement might be expected, "Concurrently [to the aircraft's debut], a Zigolo assembly facility was established in the AVIC R&D center in Jingmen to supply the Chinese market with Ready-to-Fly (RTF) Zigolos." Now, here's the part of their announcement that caught me by surprise. "The Chinese CAAC recognizes the FAA Part 103 rule," Chip related, "which means that Chinese customers can actually fly legally and fly now in China, something that has not been so easy in LSA or other GA aircraft to date." No kidding! Virtually everyone agrees the China market for aircraft is potentially enormous, but the key word is "potentially." It is developing but seems in well in the future. Maybe not.

Here's the gasoline engine; the electric-powered version is shown at top.
If Chinese authorities permit Part 103 aircraft now, Zigolo could have a near-term impact on that market. Given its extremely low price, many Chinese flying enthusiasts could climb aboard. "The Chinese have been shipping thousands of RTF radio-controlled (RC) model aircraft to the USA," notes Erwin. "Now they will have the capability to build a man-carrying light aircraft for their own market. Chip noted that the technology and design gap between large RC aircraft and this ultralight motorglider is small; with the coming electric-powered version of the Zigolo, the gap narrows further. Want to know more? Zigolo is presently available to Americans in kit form with typical build time estimated at about 150 hours. Delivery positions are now available for the RTF version and first deliveries are planned for later in 2014. Come get a closer look at both electric- and gas-powered Zigolo ultralights at Airventure Oshkosh 2014. Watch how each flies in the ultralight area — now referred to as the "Fun Fly Zone" by area organizers. Oshkosh attendees can find Zigolo at booth 939. Aeromarine-LSA offers a Oshkosh show special for new orders. I love the tagline Chip invented as it sums up the well-priced, simple aircraft — Zigolo: everything you need, and not much else.

Evektor with Dynon Earns EASA Type Certificate
By Dan Johnson, July 23, 2014

The very first aircraft ever to receive approval in the USA as a Light-Sport Aircraft is Evektor-Aerotechnik's SportStar. No challenger can ever take away that title yet the company has continually developed this pioneeering airplane and recently achieved a new level of approval ... one that alters the landscape in a way I predict we'll see more as FAA's Part 23 rewrite project progresses. "Following several months of certification process EASA has approved glass cockpit Dynon SkyView [as] SportStar RTC," Evektor announced. RTC stands for Restricted Type Certificate. It is not identical the U.S. Part 23 Type Certificate — representing a somewhat lower level of government oversight — but a company earning this has to jump through many regulatory hoops. "SportStar RTC has become the first EASA certified aircraft approved with the SkyView glass cockpit [by proving] compliance with certification requirements of the EASA CS-LSA regulations. Dynon's SkyView, recently upgraded to permit touch functionality, is widely known and used on Light-Sport Aircraft.

The first SportStar RTC with Dynon's SkyView will be delivered to France [and put into service by] Air Club Les Alcyons, one of the biggest clubs in the Paris area. Along with gear from Dynon and Garmin, Evektor said, "The aircraft will have also Apple's i-Pad Mini installed, bringing extended convenience and functionality in the cockpit." All these components from LSA stalwarts Dynon and Garmin are increasingly paired with Apple's ubiquitous tablet computer used in many industries and widely employed throughout all levels of aviation from airliners to ultralights. "With the advanced SkyView glass cockpit, ballistic recovery system, low operating costs and excellent training platform the SportStar RTC represents the most innovative solution for air clubs and pilot training organizations on the global market today," added Evektor. A top-ranked supplier to the U.S. market Evektor also does well overseas, reporting more than 1,300 aircraft have been delivered. Evektor has solid American representation through Dreams Come True and AB Flight.

This older SportStar (with Canadian registration) features LAMA founder Larry Burke in the Pilot-in-Command seat.
As everyone headed to Oshkosh for AirVenture 2014 finalizes their packing and preparations, one historically significant Light-Sport Aircraft is doing likewise and may, just possibly, appear at the space EAA has provided for the 10th Anniversary Celebration of SP/LSA. Evektor owner, E. W. Rogers wrote to offer this: "I am flying a SportStar to Oshkosh this year ... it is the first one sold in USA, and has about 800 maintenance-free hours on it." At the EAA space near the newly renamed Boeing Plaza, look for the special EAA space, which will have at least 17 aircraft on display, including most leading brands of Special LSA plus weight shift, powered parachute, gyroplanes, and some "vintage" aircraft that Sport Pilots may fly. ••• Those going to Oshkosh may also want to attend a forum about the decade-old sector on Tuesday July 29th from 1:00 to 2:15 PM in Honda Forum Pavilion 7. The presentation will feature EAA boss Jack Pelton; FAA honcho Earl Lawrence; original FAA rule writer Ron Wojnar; industry leader Tom Peghiny of Flight Design USA; Rotax engine expert Eric Tucker; FAA Sport Pilot specialist Mark Giron; and ... yours truly.

Airbus Goes Electric and Small (with Big Ideas)
By Dan Johnson, July 21, 2014

Airbus recently showed their all-electric E-Fan at the Farnborough airshow. photo from Inside EVs
As we all get packing for Oshkosh where we'll see all manner of aircraft, one of the biggest manufacturers revealed one of the smallest airplanes at another airshow: Farnborough in England, an event dominated by military and airline producers. More surprisingly, Airbus announced at Farnborough that it would put into production their all-electric-powered E-Fan. Big aircraft, the buses of the sky, are good at moving people to their destination. However, they are very noisy and consume oceans of fuel leading to more pollution. Can this situation improve? Is it even reasonable to consider an electric-powered airliners? Some experts scoff at the idea but Airbus' E-Fan made a powerful, if relatively quiet, statement.

Airbus' E-fan made its first flight at a French airport near Bordeaux on March 11th this year. The project reportedly evolved from work with the tiniest airplane most AirVenture visitors have seen. Airbus used an electric-powered Cri-Cri as a test bed to develop their battery and energy management technology. E-fan is presently a tandem two seater though Airbus said a production version will have side-by-side seats. The small plane is 22 feet long and has a wingspan of 31 feet and the prototype weighs 1,100 pounds; this sounds rather heavy for a two seater but remember it's carrying plenty of weight in batteries (Airbus did not specify how much). Two electric motors drive two ducted fans mated to variable-pitch propellers. With a 120-cell lithium polymer battery, E-Fan can fly for one hour with a 15-minute reserve. Powering the motors are a series of 250 volt lithium-ion polymer batteries made by the Korean company, Kokam. Batteries are mounted in the inboard section of the wings (see second video) and can be recharged in one hour, said Airbus. Engineers also installed a backup battery onboard for emergency landings if the main battery power has been consumed.

E-Fan uses tandem, retractable gear with outrigger wheels. photo by Franklin Polanco
As the photos show E-Fan has tandem, retractable undercarriage made up of a nosewheel and a larger main gear, something like the original Europa that used a massive single wheel. Airbus engineers designed E-Fan to taxi using electric power. The main wheel is driven via chain from a 6 kW (8 hp) electric motor. The big company said this results in more noise reduction and the powered drive wheel can silently accelerate the plane up to 37 mph. Doing so reduces power drain versus employing the propellers to move around on the ground. E-Fan's twin electric motors are enough to propel the small airplane to a top speed of 136 mph and a cruise speed, with two people aboard, of about 100 mph.

Airbus plans both two and four-seat versions of E-Fan, called 2.0 and 4.0, which could arrive by 2017. The company said it believes its E-Fan 2.0 can find a market in pilot training. Airbus reportedly plans to build 100 E-Fan test aircraft to gather data for the program. Going even further, Airbus believes electric aircraft will become important in coming years as a way to cut greenhouse-gas emissions from conventional aircraft exhaust and to offer quieter planes. Noise isn't just an issue for people living near airports; quieter planes could be flown at hours that would unacceptable for noisier conventional airlines so companies could schedule more flights, Airbus noted. They hinted at plans for an all-electric or hybrid 90-seat passenger plane. The European company also thinks it is possible to build an all-electric helicopter.

"Even electric commercial airliners are in the works. In Europe EADS, Airbus' parent company, has proposed the VoltAir ducted fan engine that would power commercial airliners," writes Low-Powerdesign.
E-Fan uses ducted fans, which places a fan-type propeller mounted inside a cylindrical shroud, or duct. The duct reduces losses in thrust from the tips of the props although to be effective close tolerances are necessary probably driving up costs. Ducted fans generally use an odd number of shorter blades than convention props allowing them to operate at higher speeds. Using an odd number of blades reduces resonance in the duct. Conventional props tips approach the sound barrier so they are turned at lower speeds which requires more diameter. A shrouded rotor can be as much as 94% efficient, experts say and ducted fans are quieter than conventional propellers because they shield the blade noise and reduce intensity of the tip vortices. Ducted fans can also offer enhanced safety on the ground by protecting people against spinning props. Learn more about ducted fans.

Catch some good closeups, flying footage, and onboard camera views in this YouTube video of the Airbus eFan single seater.

Here is the official Airbus video on the development of E-Fan. If you look very closely, you'll see some features, for example, a BRS parachute flag, and details about battery placement.

Versatile LSA Seaplane to Debut at AirVenture 2014
By Dan Johnson, July 14, 2014 wants to tempt you to come by EAA's 10th LSA Anniversary Celebration exhibit at AirVenture 2014.
An entirely new Light-Sport seaplane will make its "global debut" at EAA AirVenture 2014 and this is one you'll want to see up close and in detail. As with a number of other persons, I have been briefed on this new entry and, like the others, I signed a Non-Disclosure Agreement to keep the new project under wraps until company leaders were ready to reveal their new flying machine. At the coming summer celebration of flight in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, everyone will finally get to see what has excited many of those NDA signers. Airshow visitors will see a mockup, but if the full-size concept looks even remotely as good as it did in the computer presentation I was shown, be prepared to be blown away. This boat hull aircraft has features you've never even contemplated much less seen on any previous offering. You can guess some of what I'm writing about by their tagline for MVP, "The World's Most Versatile Plane." That's a big claim as we already have many good seaplane designs and more will be following. Yet after they get a chance to examine MVP, I think many may find the boast not out of line.

On the day before AirVenture opens this year, that is, on Sunday July 27th, officials will make a presentation to invited media. By opening day Monday, the full-size mockup will be available for review by everyone attending EAA's 10th Anniversary Celebration special exhibit near Boeing Plaza, right in the heart of the giant event. Come visit and see MVP along with a wide range of Light-Sport Aircraft or aircraft that Sport Pilots can fly.

I'm not the only one who has been impressed with an private preview of MVP. Cirrus Design cofounder Alan Klapmeier, now CEO of turbine aircraft developer Kestrel Aircraft Inc., said, "The MVP is a game changer." Another aviation big shot, Jim Irwin, owner of Aircraft Spruce and Specialty, commented, "In my 30 years in aviation, I have never seen aircraft features such as these."

I've known Mike VanStaagen since before Cirrus Design won FAA Type Certification for their SR20 back in 1998. More recently, he has acted as lead designer for the Cirrus single engine Vision Jet being created by the successful Duluth, Minnesota company. Mike has since moved over to to head design of the new LSA seaplane. "They asked me to design the aircraft of my dreams [and] this is it," he said.

If those comments and my enthusiasm for innovative LSA seaplane design has piqued your interest, go bookmark the MVP website. You won't presently see anything more than I've told you here, but after the company's media debut as AirVenture 2014 opens, the website will be populated with more detail. Based on the quality of the imagery I was shown, I imagine you'll want to spend some time looking at all they publish online. I plan to have more once the company goes public on the day before AirVenture 2014 starts. Summertime LSA seaplane flying is getting truly interesting. Stay tuned!

Searey Expands into China; Opens Sales Office
By Dan Johnson, July 12, 2014

The list of aviation companies involved in one way or another with China is getting so long I won't try to show them all here. Big companies like Cirrus Design or Continental are included. So are LSA manufacturers of various brands. Some business are setting up dealerships (Quicksilver, others). Others have arranged Chinese partners to build planes in-country (Flight Design, Zenith, others). Several companies have been fully acquired by or have received substantial funding from Chinese enterprises (Icon, others) and I'm aware of more that we will hear more about in the weeks and months to follow. The U.S. government and many other nations have borrowed from the Chinese government so a nearly unfathomable amount of dollars or other currencies are parked in China. However, most of the aviation financial arrangements are private, showing that, like their government, Chinese business people have plenty of funds to invest. The big question is, will a true personal aviation market develop? ... outside of business jets and airliners, that is. We'll have to wait to see but companies are certainly for big things. Not all China ventures worked out well, for example, Cessna's Skycatcher. Others are vigorously pursuing the Asian market ...

Searey China sales is located in this office tower in Shanghai.
With Progressive Aerodyne now owned by an American named Adam Yang, you might think it logical to expect this successful Florida kit builder turned LSA manufacturer to have an Asian presence. In addition, since Searey is already SLSA approved and can boast a long history of loyal builders, this brand and model has a leg up on companies that are still in development (Lisa Akoya, others). So, here's the official announcement: "Progressive Aerodyne is pleased to announce the opening of its newly established sales office in Shanghai, China, to support the sale of Searey Light Sport Amphibious Airplanes." The Searey was first presented to the China market at air shows in 2009, where interest in Searey airplanes was overwhelming. Since then, Progressive Aerodyne participated in subsequent air shows and invested in research and marketing in order to advance the Searey in China." The company reported that it is working with Chinese aviation authorities to gain approval for Searey sales in China and the Shanghai office* will work with government authorities in China while managing marketing and sales efforts. "We are excited about the expected growth potential of Searey light sport airplanes in China. Our new sales office will allow us to penetrate the China market more effectively and access a very large and entirely new group of future Searey enthusiasts," said Adam Yang, CEO of Progressive Aerodyne.

For more than 20 years, Searey LSA and kits have been produced in Tavares, Florida, about 45 minutes northwest of Orlando. Progressive Aerodyne's manufacturing facility is currently in full production of two certified models, Searey Light Sport and Searey Light Sport Elite. In addition, the company continues to manufacture Searey kits. You can find out much more and watch videos with company officials here.

* Progressive Aerodyne's Shanghai office is located at: Room 2809, Maxdo Centre, Building No.8, Xing-Yi Road, Chang-Ning District, Shanghai, 200336 China, Tel: 021-6236-2360.

SkyCraft Airplanes Finishes ASTM Compliance
By Dan Johnson, July 8, 2014

While so many continue to say you can't buy a Light-Sport Aircraft for less than — pick a number ... $100,000 ... $150,000 — the truth is something else. We already have modestly priced entries from Quicksilver, BushCat, X-Air, M-Squared, plus several weight shift or powered parachute entries. Another that burst on the scene a couple AirVentures back was SkyCraft. The Czech design that a group in Utah are Americanizing is a fully enclosed, well-equipped single seater. Not many singles have been offered (Tecnam's aerobatic Snap is one such) yet the fact remain that much flying is done solo anyway, so why not have a sharp airplane for your own aerial enjoyment. Plus, what if you can fly it away for less than $60,000? Not every pilot will find SkyCraft SD-1 Minisport sufficient and lucky for those aviators, plenty of choices are available if you have to have 1,000-mile range, autopilot, big dual glass instrument panels, and of course, two seats. However, I for one can't wait to fly SkyCraft and now it looks like the wait is getting shorter.

SkyCraft acquired a new facility and brought in the first couple airplanes.
In June 2014, SkyCraft Airplanes filed a declaration with FAA that their SD-1 Minsiport is fully compliant with all ASTM standards used to gain acceptance by the agency as a Special or fully-built LSA. This news comes only one year after SkyCraft announced at AirVenture that they would produce the airplane ready-to-fly. "We now await an FAA audit, after which we will be able to make our first aircraft deliveries to eager customers," stated SkyCraft Director of Marketing, Paul Glavin. The company reported that FAA has scheduled SkyCraft's audit for September 2014. As they prepare for production after FAA's audit and presumed acceptance, SkyCraft purchased a new factory and hangar (photo) at the Provo, Utah Municipal Airport (KPVU). "The new facility will triple the production space from the current factory, allowing enough room to build one hundred SD-1 Minisports a year," Glavin added. The space will also permit new development work.

Since announcing their manufacturing intentions in 2013, SkyCraft reported making several upgrades and refinements to the design for the SD-1 Minisport. "Most recently, the mechanical brakes on the SD-1 were replaced with a stronger, smoother, hydraulic brake system, which will shorten the landing distance of the aircraft and improve taxi operations," said Glavin. "Historically, many airplane manufacturers have struggled to keep their initial price point during these developmental stages of production, however, SkyCraft has been able to maintain its highly impressive $54,850 price tag for the SD-1 Minisport in spite of the many improvements that have been made." In a welcome summary, SkyCraft said it remains committed to the quality and affordability of its airplanes. A flying SD-1 Minisport will be shown publicly for the first time at EAA Airventure Oshkosh 2014.

SuperSTOL to Perform at Just Plane Fun Days
By Dan Johnson, July 5, 2014

A one point touchdown is a particularly neat trick SuperSTOL can achieve thanks to slow touchdown speed and a shock-absorbing tailwheel gear leg. photo by Wayne Whitley

Airplane-brand-specific fly-in events can be fun and informative. If the folks at Just Aircraft are involved and if they show off their amazing SuperSTOL, a company fly-in takes on a new level of excitement. Those of you who have stopped by their airshow display to speak to the people from Just Aircraft know the Walhalla, South Carolina manufacturer is composed of a bunch of individuals that seem so laid back, you could wonder how they get so much work done. They do, by the way, having produced and delivered more than 500 aircraft kits. Since 2012 — when they introduced their at-the-time-unnamed SuperSTOL to slacked-jawed response from crowds — Just Aircraft reported kit sales have more than doubled requiring the company to add a second shift to keep up with demand. How many other companies do you know with that need? All seriousness aside for a weekend, though, those Just Aircraft'ers know how to have a good time, too. You might want to mark your calendar.

All Just Aircraft designs as seen in this photo have good bush flying capability. larger photo by Wes Whitley
Yes, right now in the early days of July, aviation businesses and pilots from around the country are getting ready for that big summer celebration of flight called AirVenture. All eyes will be on Oshkosh, Wisconsin for the next few weeks — the show runs Monday July 28th to Sunday August 3rd. Following the event Just Aircraft will likely be counting fresh orders once they get back home to Walhalla, but they won't have much spare time on their hands. Not even one month after AirVenture ends, Just Aircraft will sponsor Just Plane Fun Days on August 29 through August 31 (Labor Day weekend) at Brass Town Airport near the town of the same name in North Carolina*. Just Plane Fun Days is open to anyone and is free of charge. The event appeals significantly to people who own one of the Just Aircraft models but anyone who is considering their designs can attend, have a good time, and find out lots more from pilots who have built and fly the airplane plus speak to company officials. Just Aircraft officials expect that Highlanders and new SuperSTOLs will dominate the event and certainly the attention of the public.

I cannot imagine any pilot turning away while a SuperSTOL performs either a take off or a landing. photo by Wayne Whitley
Billy Payne owns the Brass Town airport and is hosting the event. He said it will be, "a gathering of like-minded people who enjoy flying their aircraft. At any given daylight hour there will usually be a dozen aircraft in the air, giving rides or participating in one of the competitions." Those who attend can observe contests such as a short field take off, short field landing, spot landing, limbo (flying under a ribbon), balloon pop, coyote shoot (balloons) and bomb drop. These can be entertaining for any aircraft types, but when you see SuperSTOL attempt them, the game is different ... and fascinating. All attending Just Aircraft models will be judged in a variety of categories: Best of Show, Best Panel, Most Innovative, People's Choice, and Grand Champion. Saturday night will be the chance for a cookout at the airport and on Sunday morning pilots will take off for a tour of the local mountains. Last year organizers reported about 2,000 people visited, and even with bad weather 19 Just Aircraft flew in. This year, if blessed with good weather, Payne expects more than twice that number. Camping is available on the field and for those who prefer a motel, the group has a special rate at the local Hampton Inn. For more information phone Billy Payne at (828) 557-4833 or call Just Aircraft at (864) 718-0320.

* Brass Town hosts a festival that includes a contest with local men dressed as women to compete for the title "Miss Possum Queen." Surely this refutes anyone who thinks Brass Townians aren't out to have fun.

Quicksilver Ready to Build Special LSA
By Dan Johnson, July 1, 2014

FAA Aviation Safety Inspectors John Soltis (L) and Kym Robbins (R), present a pink airworthiness certificate to Quicksilver Aeronautics principals Will Escutia (white shirt) and Dan Perez at the French Valley Airport.

Plenty of longtime light aircraft enthusiasts have wondered when Quicksilver would enter the SLSA sweepstakes. "On June 26th we received the airworthiness certificate and the operations limitations document for our Sport 2SE Special LSA after a three-hour inspection from the FAA," said Quicksilver Aeronautics President and CEO, Will Escutia. Earlier the company reported successfully passing an intensive FAA audit, but a final aircraft inspection by FAA personnel was still needed. Aviation Safety Inspectors, John Soltis and Kym Robbins, provided the pink airworthiness card at the French Valley Airport (photo), approximately 10 miles from the company's factory. Soltis expressed his congratulations saying the airplane "looked very good." At near the industry's lowest cost — $39,999 for a fully built Sport 2SE — those Light-Sport fans who fret about the high cost of some (exceptionally well equipped) airplanes now have a very affordable choice. If $40 Grand is still too much you can buy a Quicksilver ELSA or Experimental Amateur Built for even less.

"We feel very satisfied that the last milestone to finish our SLSA project has been completed," Escutia noted. "Dan Perez did an outstanding job leading our company team to this achievement."
Quicksilver is doing something else that is entirely different in a first for the industry. They have established three manufacturing points in the USA: the Temecula, California factory serving the west; a facility in Reserve, Louisiana operated by the company's longest lasting and most successful dealer, Air-Tech, Inc., serving the south; and longtime company sales manager, Todd Ellefson, who will now run a manufacturing and dealership operation serving the north (email). ASTM standards and FAA rules address multiple manufacturing outlets when the manufacturer assures quality control and operation processes of their remote outlets. Quicksilver is pioneering the use of this arrangement and will also establish similar facilities in countries like China where they just signed a major order for 77 aircraft. In all, the wait by some enthusiasts for this brand to get in the LSA game is over and Quicksilver is ready to leap ahead with their plans.

Quicksilver reported the Sport 2SE will be shown and flown at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2014 at the end of July. photo by James Lawrence
In operation since the early 1970s (that's 40+ years, folks!), Quicksilver can lay claim to delivering more complete light aircraft kits than any manufacturer I know. They've delivered out more than 15,000 kits, a significant number of which are still flying in more than 100 countries. Now adding ready-to-fly models, Quicksilver is ready to move forward aggressively. (I must note that for many years the company has also made Part 103-eligible aircraft which could be delivered ready to fly by any dealer.) As Quicksilver ramps up production of the Sport S2SE, they are also at work on the SLSA version of the GT500 tandem two seater. This well-received aircraft was the very first Primary Aircraft category aircraft to win FAA approval - way back in 1993 - so that effort to gain SLSA acceptance from FAA should pose few challenges. New owners Will Escutia and Dan Perez took over in 2012 and in two short years have seriously increased the company's activity. Congratulations to the two new owners and their whole team. You can see this aircraft and nearly 20 more in EAA's 10th Anniversary Celebration space near the main plaza at AirVenture 2014.

To read SPLOG postings going back to 2005 -- all organized in chronological order -- click SPLOG.




Lockwood Aircraft is the builder of two of light aviation's best-recognized flying machines: AirCam and the Drifter line. Most sport aviators already know the Lockwood brand, a leader in Rotax maintenance and aircraft services.

Hansen Air Group represents recognized brands in the LSA
space: FK Lightplanes and their distinctive biplane Comet, FK9, and FK51 plus the great-flying Magnaghi Sky Arrow. Based in Atlanta, Georgia Hansen Air Group is an experienced player in the LSA space.
Multiple LSA

Flight Design USA imports CT, the top selling Light-Sport Aircraft. CT is a 98% carbon fiber design
with superb performance, roomy cockpit, great useful load, and a parachute as standard equipment ... the market leader for 10 years!

Corbi Air represents the Made-for-Americans Direct Fly Alto 100. Created in the Czech Republic, Alto 100 was upgraded for USA sales and the result is a comfortable, handsome low wing, all-metal LSA with features you want.

Progressive Aerodyne designed and supplies the SeaRey series, arguably the most celebrated of all light seaplanes in America. A close community of hundreds of owners offers camaraderie few other brands can match.

Vickers Aircraft has created one of the most distinctive new LSA seaplanes yet to emerge.Powered by the 180-horsepower
Lycoming O-360, their Wave model is like no other seaplane ever introduced with multiple features to set it apart from the crowd.

SkyCraft Airplanes is America’s first Light-Sport Aircraft single seater. SD-1 Minisport is affordably priced, very well equipped, and was designed to exhibit docile handing qualities. It can be flown for less than $12 per hour.

U.S. Sport Aircraft Importing represents the popular SportCruiser, one of the best selling Special Light-Sport Aircraft among 130 models on the market. The Texas-headquartered importer has long represented this familiar model.

Pipistrel has designed and manufactures a range of beautiful, sleek aircraft that have found markets around the world. Starting with gliders and motorgliders, Pipistrel now offers a line of powered aircraft using multiple power sources.

Super Petrel LS, manufactured by Edra Aeronautica in Brazil and represented by Florida Light Sport Aviation, is a unique and highly effective LSA seaplane. A biplane design, this is well established flying boat with more than 20 years of history.

Phoenix Air USA imports the beautiful Phoenix Special Light-Sport Aircraft, a performance motorglider that can cruise swiftly and serve both functions with excellent creature comfort. Given its clever wing extension design, you get two aircraft in one!

Aeromarine-LSA represents an economical Part 103 ultralight that is within reach of almost any budget. For local fun flying, or for those who enjoy soaring flight Zigolo is light enough to be lifted by even the most gentle thermals.

X-Air brings a return to reasonably priced Light-Sport Aircraft, with a ready-to-fly flying machine you can purchase for a genuinely low price. No new arrival, X-Air has a rich history in light aviation.

North Wing is America's leading manufacturer of weight shift LSA and Part 103 ultralight trikes. The company's wing designs are so good that most other trike manufacturers use them. Aircraft prices are highly affordable by all.

Renegade Light Sport produces the sexy low wing, all composite Falcon in America. The Florida company has also established itself as the premiere installer of Lycoming’s IO-233 engine.

Tecnam is the world's leading manufacturer of Light-Sport-eligible aircraft offering five models. The world's fastest-selling light twin, a four seat single engine model, and an 11-seat twin complete the range.

Evektor is Number One and always will be. The Czech company's SportStar was the number one SLSA to win approval but engineers have steadily improved the model far beyond that 2005 version that started the race.

Zenith Aircraft is one of America's leading kit suppliers featuring well proven models from legendary designer, Chris Heintz. Centrally based in Mexico, Missouri, Zenith offers kit aircraft for several popular models.

Just Aircraft has delivered more than 300 kit aircraft since 2002, but in 2012 they electrified pilots with the awesome performance of their all-new SuperSTOL. It may look extreme and performs extremely well, but it is truly docile and forgiving to fly.

Aerotrek Aircraft imports the A240 and A220 tricycle gear or taildragger Special Light-Sport Aircraft. A finely finished aircraft at an excellent price, Aerotrek has wide, affordable appeal.

Quicksilver Aeronautics is the world's largest producer of ultralight aircraft, selling some 15,000 aircraft. The company's designs are thoroughly tested, superbly supported, and have an excellent safety record.

Jabiru USA builds the spacious and speedy J-250 and more recently J-230 plus the training-optimized J-170, each certified as Special LSA. The Tennessee-based company also imports and services the popular Jabiru engine line.

SportairUSA imports the dashing and superbly-equipped StingSport S4 that has won a loyal following from American pilots. More recently, they introduced their TL-3000 high-wing LSA. SportairUSA is a full-line operation with maintenance and training, too.

Arion Aircraft has designed and built one of the most beautiful low wing entries in the Special LSA and kit-built aircraft sector. The all-American designed and built aircraft is priced fairly and flies wonderfully ... need you search for more?

The Airplane Factory (TAF) produces the Sling series of world-circling aircraft (literally) and now this fine-flying, all-metal beauty is available in the United States as a Special Light-Sport Aircraft. Here is an LSA to follow.

BRM Aero manufacturers the handsome Bristell all-metal SLSA. This highly evolved, next-generation Light-Sport was carefully engineered for luxury, comfort, excellent stability, and safety while being fun, fast, and easy to fly.

Kitfox is one of the world's best selling light aircraft kits with more than 5,000 delivered. With unrivaled name recognition, Kitfox is admired for crisp handling, excellent performance, easily folded wings, and more. The design is flown around the world.

BushCat is the distinctive Light-Sport Aircraft within reach of almost any budget. With a solid heritage BushCat by SkyReach is fun, capable, and available as a kit, fully-built SLSA or ELSA.

World Aircraft Company is Columbian design expertise joined to Canadian entrepreneurship based in Paris, Tennessee USA. Welcome to World Aircraft and a brand-new short takeoff and landing (STOL) Light-Sport Aircraft, the all-metal Spirit.

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Updated: July 24, 2014

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