MAR 2015

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: https://experimenter.epubxp.com/i/471466

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Page 24 of 36

EAA Experimenter 25 Lawrenceburg, Tennessee. He checked my log and completed my fl ight checks, then endorsed me for solo so I could fl y of the fi ve hours in type to qualify for in- surance. I was back home in four days. Next, I needed to be checked out at my home fi eld and fi nish my fl ight training. My good friend and certifi cated fl ight instruc- tor (CFI), Larry Gilbert, completed it. Then I called EAA, which assisted me in acquiring insurance. With this done, I began my 40-hour Phase 1 fl ight testing. Finally on October 16, 2012, I called the designated pilot examiner to schedule my FAA checkride in my aircraft. But fi rst, she wanted to learn about the aircraft and its handling characteristics. The next day she called and said, "Okay!" On October 18, with all of my nerves shot, she reached over and said, "Congratulations!" I became a certifi cated pilot and thrilled beyond words. My CH 650 Little Bit was a joy to build and is a joy to fl y. AIRPL ANE NO. 2 It was April 2013, and my sweetheart just said she may be gone for two months to help her daughter move to Florida. Gasp! What will I do? Quick! Call Zenith to see if I can get a CH 750 kit. Zenith said I could have a slot if I came to its next workshop and built the rudder. Let's see—I can be there in two weeks, I thought. In May, I loaded up the trailer and drove to Missouri again, built the rudder, and was back home in four days. Then the building frenzy began! Larry's wife was going to be gone for a week. Rather than fl y Larry's Citabria, he agreed to be my cle- co man, making the process quicker. My sweetheart returned sooner than expected, but no problem. I had completed some parts, began the painting, and took the parts to the hangar. In the meantime, I had fl own in a Viking-powered 750 and decided I had to have a Viking engine! Then when the Jabiru engine on Aircraft No. 1 failed to start for the umpteenth time, I made a quick call to Jan Eggenfellner at Viking Aircraft En- gines and changed my order to two engines! By now, it was January 2014. I begin removing No. 1's engine while fi nishing Aircraft No. 2, loving every minute. Fi- nally, in March 2014, Little Bit Too passed its FAA inspection, insurance was acquired, and fl ight testing began. Meanwhile, I was also completing installation of the Vi- king engine on Airplane No. 1. Once the engine was installed, I completed the paperwork for the engine change, did the fi ve hours of additional fl ight testing, and notifi ed the FAA. By August 2014, both airplanes were complete and both were a lot of fun to build! After fl ying to the Zenith factory in Missouri, to Sebring, Florida, for the recent U.S. Sport Aviation Expo, and other places here in Florida, my sweetheart and I are planning a Bob's CH 650 Lil Bit.

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