Wheels-DOWN Water Landing!

I posted this in a comment to my SeaMax story yesterday after finding it on an Aussie website.  One of the big no-no’s in traditional floatplanes and perhaps (I honestly don’t know) traditional amphibs like the Lake Amphibian and others is landing with the wheels down.  On a float plane, it can cause a disastrous more »

Raising Kids Propper-Like

While looking for images for my RV-12 post the other day, I came across the smile-worthy video below. It was put up on YouTube by an RV-7 owner who treated his little brother to a flight, with some aerobatics thrown in for grins, and what a delight to see the sheer joy on the little more »

Flying Club Initiative

AOPA during its annual Summit convention that ended this weekend announced during the event a program that makes a lot of sense: a national network of flying clubs with the aim to grow general aviation at all levels. We’ve been talking about alternatives to the modern steep cost of private flying for some time now, more »

Popular RV-12 Kit Now An SLSA!

We’ve been wondering when/if the highly popular Van’s RV-12 E-LSA kit airplane would ever be produced as an SLSA. That question is now answered with the newly announced SLSA version, and at a very attractive price: $105,000. In addition, 12 “Signature Edition” models with all options at $115,000. The purpose, says Van’s, is to “define and codify the more »

Calling All Sport Pilots

For my next column for Plane & Pilot, and to grow a dialogue here on the blog (diablogue?), I’m putting out a call to all Light Sport pilots across the country (and around the world!) for your input on some topics we all think about and kick around with our flying pals.  Think of it more »

Leaf Peeper Round Up

As fall colors begin to pop their chromatic yumminess on New England, it’s time to do some shotgun Light Sport factoid gathering. * Sebring U.S. Sport Aviation Expo Model Airplane Contest: Pandering shamelessly to the inner kid in all of us, as well as the kids we bring to the event, the LSA event this more »


The TIGHAR group just doesn’t give up! What about this:

Financing The Long Haul

This has been a tough semi-decade for people in the Light Sport industry with big ideas.  And for people everywhere with this kind of thinking:  “Hey, let’s throw a few mill bucks at this mega-concept and see if it changes the world!” Cessna’s Skycatcher endured a couple non-recoverable spins and parachute deployments in its intensive more »

Birds of a Composite Feather…

Top General Aviation manufacturer Cirrus Aircraft, which makes the Cirrus line of four-seat, all-composite aircraft, just announced it’s partnering with another composite company, one that’s had its share of delays in getting to market: Icon Aircraft. The Icon A5, a sleek, highly-promoted amphibian SLSA, has gathered several hundred orders although the company, formed in 2005, more »

Oshkosh Saturday

Another beautiful day.  Warmer, but humidity not stifling and a steady breeze was evident most of the day.  Not a huge crowd compared to some earlier years but many LSA and GA exhibitors alike reported good, focused interest and not a few sales. Pipistrel in particular seems to be riding the crest of ever-growing reputation.  more »

Oshkosh Refreshed

Just put in my first day at the show, only doing 3 days this year, plus a layover day to pick up any after-show-convenient flight reports. Uncharacteristically, Oshkosh had a truly beautiful weather day after a week of 100 degree days and microburst winds and thunderstorms that sent people scurrying hither and yon.  The crowds more »

Skycatcher To Move To Primary Aircraft Category!

Edit:  There was some confusion after I first posted this a few days before Oshkosh, so I hope this addendum clears things up: First Piper, now Cessna…wow, didn’t see this coming.  I’m referring to Piper leaving the LSA field after dropping the PiperSport a couple years back.  Similarly, Cessna will no longer list the Skycatcher more »


Hola – greetings from Chico. One month down, and three to go. I’m missing Oshkosh but since I made Sun & Fun and will be there again next year, not too sad…although I miss seeing my friends. A few of them are giving me updates though! Fire season in Northern California has been pretty busy more »

New HUD for LSA

“Situational Awareness” is one of those phrases you hear a lot when aviation safety is the topic…and when isn’t aviation safety the topic in a cockpit? New on the market is a device to allow pilots to keep their eyes on the skies…while also having instrument readouts right in their field of view. HUD, of more »

iFly 720 GPS Raises the GPS bar

I just wrote up a piece for the Tech Talk Dept. of Plane & Pilot on the iFly 720 GPS, a really amazing, super-affordable, Air Gizmo-dockable unit that’s got more features than Carter had pills (that’s a reference for older readers). Here’s my lead from that article, out in the next issue : “If you more »

Terrific Oshkosh Airventure 2012 App from Sporty’s

For all you smartphone and iPad users, here’s a great guide to Oshkosh from Sporty’s Pilot Shop.  You can read all the details here, and I’m posting a couple of my own screens. There’s lots to like, because anybody who’s been to the Big Show (It’ll be my 32 year this year) knows it’s total more »

The Year of Cub Love

In case you hadn’t heard, this is the Year of the Cub…the 75th anniversary celebration of that wonderful proto-LSA, the Piper J3 Cub. Of course, I’m excusing my post on the FAA-certified J3 here because it is also legal to fly as a Sport Pilot, along with many other venerable Golden Age flivvers.  I fly more »

Another Voice on Affordable Flying

Ben Sclair, who publishes General Aviation News, wrote a nicely thought out piece on the nuances of the high cost of flying, with a focus on LSA in particular.  He laments the black/white thinking that permeates such discussions and makes a decent case for that time-worn truism, if you really want to do something, you’ll more »