Carlo Cilliers is a recidivist builder hailing originally from South Africa although he now does his daily toil at AOPA. Lead Aircraft Maintenance Manager, Flight Operations, if you must know.
Being around all those airplanes, including his previous builds (Mustang II, two Air Cams, a Rotorway and most of an Evans VP-2) means Carlo is starting to get the hang of it judging from his brand new, gorgeous Hatz Classic he debuted at AirVenture.
While nudging the biplane form into the modern age with a bit of glass in the cockpit, the Hatz is mainly remarkable for the outstanding workmanship throughout. We assure you, this is one you’d be proud to say you built.
Technical highlights are a big Rotec radial housed inside some seriously English wheeled aluminum in the Townend Ring cowling, a bit of dining room furniture masquerading as an MT prop and upgraded leading edge ribs and such under the perfect rag job.
Saying he’s, “a materials guy” Carlo snuck in a carbon fiber headrest fairing, honeycomb in the seat shells, Inconel in the trim tab hinges along with nearly every material in the ACS catalog somewhere around the plane.
On top of everything Carlo says he started the Hatz in November 2016 and its first flight was two hours after the DAR signed the airworthiness certificate May 20, 2021. Some guys!