Home Authors Posts by Tom Wilson

Tom Wilson

Pumping avgas and waxing flight school airplanes got Tom into general aviation in 1973, but the lure of racing cars and motorcycles sent him down a motor journalism career heavy on engines and racing. Today he still writes for peanuts and flies for fun.


Longtime readers may recall that before scribbling in aviation magazines I scribbled in automotive magazines. That seems like someone else’s life a long time...

Sherman Smoot, Czech Mate Lost in Test Flight Crash

Air racing fans were stunned to hear of the loss of veteran race pilot Sherman Smoot when his long-time mount, Czech Mate, crashed on...

Wischer’s Whiff

Electrons and nitrous put Neil Wischer’s RV-8 into the 270-mph club.


Justin Meaders’ racer won gold first time out, embodying its owner’s outlook on life.

Some Old Favorites

For those building a new airplane, chances are you’re getting more than familiar with certain tools at different stages of the build. For me,...

Reno Looking Good

Got post-AirVenture depression? Fear not, pylon racing at Reno is right around the corner and the entry list has just been posted by the...

Pinnacle of Tattoos

Stopping in the Pinnacle Aircraft Engines booth we were pleased to meet the relatively new owners Todd Lavelle and JD Kuti. They purchased Pinnacle...

Cool Cowlings at James Aircraft

We last spoke to Jimmy Cox, the new owner of James Aircraft, at the 2021 Reno races. Then he was getting the fiberglass specialist...

Postcards from Oshkosh 2022

Sometimes we just need to wander aimlessly around Wittman Field. It's good for the soul and it is fantastic inspiration.

Evoking Youth & Enthusiasm

Looking for a refreshing blast of youth and enthusiasm in the small airplane world? Then drop in to Gadsden, Alabama and try to keep...

In Case You Missed it

Archive: November 1997

Ron Wanttaja sampled the still-new Van’s RV-8 for our cover story in the November...

Straight Floats to Amphibs

Fed up with the restrictions of being able to land on water only, builder Mervin Zinck came up with a design to add retractable gear to his floats. By Don Ledger.

Ziggy’s New Engine

Adding a 180-hp Titan engine to a Legend Cub.

Special Delivery

There are events in your life where you‭ ‬will always remember the time‭, ‬place‭...