Builders share their successes.


Bob Alexander’s RV-7

On May 10, 2013 I made my first flight in my completed RV-7. After a decade of building, it was finally time to experience the joy of flying this marvelous kit from Van’s Aircraft, and it did not disappoint!The plane flew perfectly, and I have now completed the testing phase, flying out of the Tacoma Narrows airport in Gig Harbor, Washington.

My RV-7 includes an IO-360 engine from AeroSport, Hartzell blended airfoil prop, interior by Classic Aero, Lightspeed electronic ignition, TruTrak autopilot, Advanced Flight System Sport AOA, and a beautiful paint job by Dan and Linda Mauer of Red Bluff, California. Thanks to EAA tech/flight advisors Marv Scott and Terry Burch.

[email protected]

Al Leppanen’s Dakota Hawk

I built my Dakota Hawk from plans over a period of about three and a half years; the first flight was in October 2011. I’ve built many R/C models over the years and my wife said, “The Hawk under construction looked just like a big model.” I must agree. The plane is a simple, classic design, all wood, fabric covering, steamgauges,and powered by a Continental A75 with no electrics. I finished it with latex paint, and I carry a handheld radio and a simple GPS. Many parts that Ididn’tthink were worth trying to build, such as the windshield, fuel tanks, and engine mount, were supplied by Fisher Flying Products. The total cost was about $19,000.

Cambridge, Ontario, Canada
[email protected]

Jimmy Young’s Zenith CH 750

On August 10, 2012, I made my first flight in N75ZX, a Zenith CH 750 I had started construction two years and nine months before. She has flown flawlessly straight and true from day one, requiring absolutely no changes in rigging. This was by far the most fulfilling personal sense of accomplishment I have ever had, and it made all of the 1008 hours I had spent over the previous two years and nine months building it well worth it. It was built from the kit Zenith sells, which utilizes CNC match-hole technology. Though there is still a lot of work to do, this makes the process easy compared to laying out every hole yourself, and it really speeds up the construction time.

It is powered by a Continental C-90 engine, which I had completely rebuilt locally by Dan Martinez, a great guy I met via referral from other builders. Six months later I have over 150 hours on it, including a three-day cross-country trip from Houston, Texas, to Fayetteville, Arkansas, I took back in November. Many thanks go out to Curtiss Shuetzberg who helped me install my engine and instruments, Danny Still who helped me with paint, James Cameron who designed the paint scheme, and the fine staff at Zenith Aircraft.

Houston, Texas
[email protected]


CompletionsSubmissions to “Completions” should include a description (a few paragraphs only—250 words maximum) of the project and the finished aircraft. Also include a good color photograph of the aircraft. Please include a daytime phone number where we can contact you if necessary. Also indicate whether we may publish your address in case other builders would like to contact you. Send submissions to [email protected] with a subject line of “Completions.” Photos must be high-resolution—300 dpi at a 3 x 5 print size is the minimum requirement.


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