David Christensen’s Mirage Marathon
I began construction of my modified Mirage Marathon in October of 1996, and decided to make it a taildragger. The wood, foam and fiberglass design lends itself well to modification. I modified the aft fuselage to accommodate a spring and tailwheel assembly and modified the forward fuselage to accommodate the spring maingear rather than attaching the maingear to the spar as per the plans. I reduced the wing dihedral and tapered the fuselage, lowering the thrust line by 113⁄16 inches to slope the forward deck for taxiing visibility. I chose a 160-horsepower engine and 70×79 pitch aluminum propeller.
The first flight was on June 28, 2011, and I couldn’t be happier with the handling and performance. Top cruise is 193 mph at 2500 rpm, and economy cruise checks 170 mph at 2200 rpm. Many thanks to friends who have given help and useful advice over the years of construction.
Brigham City, Utah
Charlie Huff’s Kitfox
After nearly seven years and over 4300 hours of logged construction time, Mr. Elliot, a Series 7 Kitfox, finally rolled out of our garage shop. Dubbed an “X-PT” (Experimental Primary Trainer), it is painted with HIPEC high-gloss in a slightly modified pre-WW-II primary trainer livery. Powered by a turbocharged Rotax 914 with a Hoffmann constant-speed prop, it is a screaming cruiser that does not like to slow down or even land if it is more than a few miles per hour over the 43-mph no-load stall speed. We have climbed easily to 12,000 feet on a hot summer day.
It will be great transportation for the Colorado high country—one of our primary reasons for persevering in the project.
A heartfelt thanks to Carol for her patience and extra hands, and my appreciation to our EAA Chapter 1373 members, especially President Graham Meyer, for his electrical system expertise and encouragement.
Jim Bower’s RV-6A
My RV-6A, N143DJ, first flew on August 10, 2011, after nearly 111⁄2 years of slow building. It has an Aero Sport Power O-320, a Catto propeller, Dynon EFIS-D100, and EMS-D120. I want to thank my tech counselors Gale Derosier, Rick Galati and the late Bob Jude. I also want to thank my flight advisor Bill Jagust and all of the people who helped me over the years. Most importantly, I’d like to thank my wife, Donna, for all of her support, patience and riveting. Next project: fairings and paint.
Bellefontaine Neighbors, Missouri
BUILDERS SHARE THEIR SUCCESSES
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