Greetings from the Great White North

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Well-Known Member
Apr 11, 2015
Martensville SK
Stumbled upon this site while looking at some engine links, and thought it might be an interesting place.

My first exposure to homebuilts was in 1968 or 69 when I was asked to help a mechanic on base with his VW engine. I was the local VW racer/freak and he was a heavy equipment wrench building an Evans Volksplane. The fellow turned out to be a fantastic mentor to a young buck, and I ended up hanging around and building parts with him for the next year or so.

The time spent on the VP re-kindled an old interest in flying (I was raised on a BCATP base as a pre-teen and would rent time in J3s with commercial student building time - at $2 an hour). If I had a logbook, it would have had several filled pages before I turned 13 - and moved to another posting. Didn't get around to scratching that itch until the ripe old age of 22, since the next base (Dad's last posting) was also near a BCATP field, so I got a license, but stuck with spam cans for a while. Moved into the bush, flew a heck of a lot, and finished those years with a 3NM Expeditor (=C45/D18S) a Yankee and a Tiger. Worked with a couple of homebuilders including a Vari Viggen (Burt Rutan's first design) that was the third or fourth of what now totals 54 airplanes of a fellow who became a good friend. He is finishing his 12th and last scratch-built design, so I stay in touch with the community.

A friend and I did do a design of a US legal (at the time) ultralight while we were involved with manufacturing a 2 place "ultralight" (the days when few of them were actually compliant and were regarded up here as homebuilts), and it was a blast to build - but my wife put kaibosh on me flying the darn thing. Something about the kids needing their old man to grow up before them.

I have toyed with the idea of building again, but reality is I probably will never have that much time before I run out of years to hold a license, but I will always be super-interested in what this community is doing. I consider THIS the birthplace of most good GENAV ideas. Yes, Mamma and I have done a few trips of OSH, and will do some more.

For reference: I am an engine guy at heart (manufactured commercial, ultralight airboats for years)