Masked Men


Why are these two men from The Airplane Factory wearing masks? Because they were on their way to AirVenture in a Sling TSi… at 27,000’! Flying non-stop from Torrance, California, they punched “Direct KOSH” into their GPS, and started to climb. While most of the time was spent at more reasonable altitudes, they took advantage of some winds (and the turbocharged Rotax 915is) to gain the benefit of winds to push them along.

Here’s a look over their shoulder at the Garmin Touch – note the altitude.

The trip in the Sling took them just 10.1 hours, and they reported the use of several relief bags along the way. They wanted us to note that their maximum altitude was actually 27,100 feet – but we felt that was just for bragging rights.

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Paul Dye
Paul Dye, KITPLANES® Editor at Large, retired as a Lead Flight Director for NASA’s Human Space Flight program, with 40 years of aerospace experience on everything from Cubs to the Space Shuttle. An avid homebuilder, he began flying and working on airplanes as a teen and has experience with a wide range of construction techniques and materials. He flies an RV-8 and SubSonex jet that he built, an RV-3 that he built with his pilot wife, as well as a Dream Tundra and an electric Xenos motorglider they completed. Currently, they are building an F1 Rocket. A commercially licensed pilot, he has logged over 6000 hours in many different types of aircraft and is an A&P, FAA DAR, EAA Tech Counselor and Flight Advisor; he was formerly a member of the Homebuilder’s Council. He consults and collaborates in aerospace operations and flight-testing projects across the country.



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