Aircraft Handling: Making the Compromises Work

Doug Rozendaal brings his considerable experience to a discussion of flight handling characteristics and his favorite aircraft. Among the factors designers consider are stability, control response, feel, personal preferences, FAA requirements, stick force, center of gravity, center of pressure, and the flight envelope. Every design is a compromise.

Dare To Be Bare

After checking with a variety of aluminum polishing aficionados, author Bob Fritz came up with a winning combination for maintaining the shine on metal airplanes. He details not only which products to use, but also how to use them for maximum effectiveness with minimal elbow grease.

A Sign of the Zodiac (Part 6)

As the project is completed and is readied for its flight home, the author reflects on the challenges he overcame and the lessons he learned during the build; by Rick Lindstrom.

But Will It Fly the Plane?

Raconteur and avid WW-I-era airplane enthusiast Dick Starks regales us with tales of innovation and resourcefulness when he attempts to measure the pull of his and his compadres VW powerplants.

Build Your Skills: Composites (Part 7)

Author Bob Fritz explains how to set up a vacuum-bagging operation in your home shop, using readily available equipment and supplies, which will get you great results on small- to medium-size parts. The object is to mechanically squeeze out excess epoxy for a good-ratio part with maximum weight savings and strength.

Van’s RV-8: Sport Plane Standard Setter

Although the RV-8 debuted 12 years ago, author Ed Wischmeyer flies a splendid builder example and notes how the design has fared over the years; by Ed Wischmeyer.

Aircraft Handling: What’s It Mean To You?

Two seasoned test pilots, Chuck Berthe and Ed Wischmeyer, discuss their favorite aircraft and the traits that make the aircraft endearing. They also offer a brief history of aircraft design, and discuss the payoffs and compromises inherent in any design effort. Some of their selections are surprising. a Staff Report.

A Sign of the Zodiac (Part 5)

Builder Rick Lindstrom’s Zenith Zodiac 601 XL project continues as he discusses the successes and setbacks he experienced along the way to the first flight; by Rick Lindstrom.

O For Some Plans!

Builder Ray Ordorica is in the process of realizing a long-term dream of building the real airplane that he flew as a model during his early years. The project is not without its trials, though, as original plans are not available, and many small mysteries must be solved before the real building can begin; by Ray Ordorica.

Build Your Skills: Composites (Part 6)

In this series installment, author Bob Fritz takes you through the basics of a three-day project you can really use: lightweight fiberglass wheel chocks. The article covers materials, cutting, patterns, foam cutting, eliminating bubbles, and pitfalls to look out for during the build; by Bob Fritz.

In Case You Missed it

Checkpoints

Repair or replace?

Ask the DAR

Common paperwork errors.

Kit Stuff

Down to Earth

Finally, an electrical fix. By Amy Laboda.