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  1. snaildrake

    Looking at Spacewalker II; who flies open cockpit?

    I've been searching for a plans-built design I really want to build. I think my essential requirements are pretty clear now: Easy for a low-hour pilot to fly Daytime VFR within 200 miles of home Enough useful load for two 200lb crew Cruise at 100-120mph on <=6gph Direct drive aviation engine...
  2. snaildrake

    Which planes have the quietest cabins?

    OK, so I've read the Quiet Flight thread about how to minimize noise from the prop and engine. I'd like to come at noise from inside the cabin. I flew today in a nice BD-4 with an IO-320 and constant speed prop, and it was unpleasantly loud -- hard to concentrate and impossible to...
  3. snaildrake

    Ultralights for windy, high-altitude strips

    I live in New Mexico, and every airstrip within 100 miles is at 5000' or higher, with gusty winds and density altitudes up to 9000' in the summer. Looking at my options for a 3-axis Part 103 or 'fat' ultralight, I'm hearing that part 103 ULs just don't fly well here. So far I only hear about...
  4. snaildrake

    Reality check: is there a modest $$ (ultralight) way to get 3-axis training?

    Once I learned the minimum cost of fixed wing instruction at $4-5,000, I thought I might fly sooner than 2014 (when my sons graduate from college) if I learned in a 3-axis ultralight. Casting around for instructors in New Mexico, I got this reply from the president of the Albuquerque ultralight...
  5. snaildrake

    Used 3-axis ultralights to look for / avoid

    I'm going to start watching for a used Part 103 ultralight as a first aircraft. On a budget of US$5,000 - 8,000 max, what 3-axis ultralights are worth keeping an eye out for? Or avoiding? I'd like to find a machine that can climb safely from 5000-6500' airstrips in New Mexico (you tell me...
  6. snaildrake

    Has high-wing plane design changed that little in seventy-five years?

    I want to understand how recently designed planes might fly or function 'better' than much-imitated designs from the 30s or 40s. I am most interested in LSA high-wing utility two seaters that can handle short runways (STOL not critical). Here are the craft I've come up with that interest me...