January 2014

Experimenter is a magazine created by EAA for people who build airplanes. We will report on amateur-built aircraft as well as ultralights and other light aircraft.

Issue link: http://experimenter.epubxp.com/i/247918

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Page 7 of 38

FLIGHTLINE Belite SeaLite Flies BELITE MADE THE successful first test flight of its new aircraft, the Belite SeaLite, in mid-December. The SeaLite is an amphibious, carbon-fiber, float-equipped aircraft, designed to fly legally under FAR 103 regulations of of water or land. The base aircraft is a design variation of Belite's UltraCub aircraft and incorporates a number of technically advanced features that enable it to fly with an empty weight that is under the FAR 103–prescribed maximum airframe weight of 338 pounds allowed for a float-equipped ultralight. James Wiebe, CEO of Belite Aircraft, was at the controls for the first flight: "I was pleased with this test flight; it demonstrated the performance and utility possible with a singleplace amphibious aircraft. The ground roll was very short, the climb rate was impressive, and the landing manners were easy and benign." The spars in the wing are constructed from carbon fiber, as are the floats and certain other key elements of the aircraft. The fuselage is constructed largely from aerospace aluminum. Each basic wing panel weighs only 20 pounds; each individual carbon-fiber float also weighs about 20 pounds. The SeaLite also features a custom lightweight instrument panel with a full range of conventional instruments. The SeaLite was developed in direct response to a customer request and will be delivered to an individual in the upper Midwest early next year. In amphibious (land/water) configuration, this new aircraft is priced at $60,000. In straight (water only) configuration, it is priced at $50,000. Other nonaquatic versions of Belite UltraCubs have starting prices under $20,000. For more information about the SeaLite, visit www.BeliteAircraft.com; watch a video of the first flight at http://YouTube/8kQz49-0Dpw. Thatcher CX5 Makes First Flight THE FIRST FLIGHT OF Dave Thatcher's latest creation, the two-place CX5, N14GB, took place on Tuesday, December 17, at Jack Edwards Airport in Gulf Shores, Alabama. According to test pilot Dr. Glen Bradley, EAA 164271, it's quite an airplane. "Dave hit a home run with the CX4, and I told him today he has now hit two clean out of the park," he wrote in his pilot report to an online news group. 8 Vol.3 No.1 / January 2014 Thatcher, 81, EAA 654626, of Pensacola, Florida, gained wide acclaim for the single-place CX4, for which more than 500 plan sets have been sold. Bradley declared in the pilot report, "One can tell right away the two planes are brothers. Not only do they look alike, they fly very similarly." The CX5 measures 18 feet in length with a 28-foot wingspan, has an empty weight of 721 pounds with a useful load of 579 pounds, and is powered by an 85-hp Volkswagen engine. Cruise speed is 125 mph, and plans will be available following completion of the 40-hour flight-test period. Read the full PIREP.

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