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Q-talk 36 - LETTERS


Here is my membership for another term and thanks so much for all you have done for us guys out here. Truly you are one of a kind, love you man, keep it up.

ANOTHER Q-2 BITES THE DUST. After 6 years of building and 7 wonderful years of flying my Q-2 I had a partial power loss on takeoff. Truly a NIGHTMARE situation. The story goes like this: The new owner had been given 10 hours of instruction from me and was confident in landing the bird. We decided to fly it to his town, Midland-Odessa, Texas early one Friday morning. Since Midland's elevation was 4,000 some odd feet, I thought I would adjust the needle on the Posa Carb for that elevation. Mistake #1, don't adjust something that is running good. Instead of screwing the needle in two turns, I screwed it out 2 turns. Now I know you are saying, "How stupid", but after adjusting and filing on it at least 30 times, I really didn't think that there would be any question that I had done the wrong thing. Well, I did, and hindsight is 20/20, and what happened, happened and I take the blame for it with a good lesson learned. Static run up always!!!!

As far as what happened, we did our run up and everything seemed pretty good, knowing what I had done to the carb. So we proceeded and started our rollout and takeoff with a climb of 90 mph. And then, oh, my gosh, with about 90 feet of altitude we were on our way down. "Can't turn back, oh ... power lines, can't go over, must go under, oh ... trees, so I pulled back and made it over the trees, but stalled and during the stall started a turn to the right, no place to land, oh ... there's a place to the left ... so I turned and impacted the ground HARD, broke the canard, then a straight slide out for about 300 feet. All of this happened in about 8 seconds. The prop broke, canard broke, tailspring broke, pride demolished. The most important thing is we escaped without a scratch on us and the aircraft is very rebuildable.

I am rebuilding and have already completed the canard. Should be back in the air soon. It is easier the second time you have to build something. The Q-2 is very crashworthy and I really think it saved our lives 'cause we hit hard. Just fly it to the ground and do what you have to do to keep the airspeed you need.

EMBARRASSED Don Short, Stillwater, OK

ED. NOTE: I have said this before, thank goodness for you guys who are willing to tell us your bad experiences, in spite of the embarrassment, so that one of us may be saved from your harm. This is just like Don Short though; I've found him to be unpretentious and about as friendly as a warm puppy. Don has pointed out his mistake very clearly here, but look at what he did right.

1. He FLEW the airplane right to the ground.

2. He DIDN'T make the sap move to trying to turn back to the field.

3. He kept his airspeed up in the turns and as long as he could.

As a result of 1, 2 & 3, he killed the airplane but not the occupants. He is alive to rebuild the airship.

But let me comment on the mistake for a minute. Before we just pass it off as a dumb move and read on, think about it. We humans have these lapses of attention more than once, each day of our lives. How many times have you spilled a glass of coke in spite of having handled a glass since age 1? How many times have you burned a piece of furniture in spite of having smoked a thousand packs of cigarettes without incident? After hundreds of miles of error-free driving, suddenly you go off the shoulder. Why? Most lapsed attention doesn't cost much more than inconvenience, but once in a while somebody hits a bridge abutment when he reaches for a French fry dropped on the car floor. Distractions from the main event = accidents.

Lately I've seen more than my share of pilots who are so familiar that they don't have to pre-flight the airplane. The purpose of these rituals, maybe more than anything else, might just be to slow you down and cause you to concentrate with full focus on the main event. Maybe a defined ritual helps to clear away the pressure of time or other distractions so that something out of the ordinary won't slip by you. A prehistoric carpenter probably uttered these words: "measure twice, cut once". This is wise advice in building an airplane and when working around a finished aircraft maybe we should modify the ritual to say, "do everything twice before you operate it once".

Dear Jim,

I've been flying my Q-2 for 4 years now. We finished the Q-2 in October of 1986 and flew it in November of the same year.

I still have the original Revmaster engine in it but have changed the heads 3 times. The first change was for the new heads that were supposed to raise the horsepower to 75. The heads weren't any good and only lasted about a year. The valve seats were too soft, you couldn't keep the valves adjusted and the heads would crack between the intake and exhaust valves. The valve seats were cut out so large that there wasn't enough material for strength between the valves. The third set of heads that I have installed have smaller valves, but still larger than the original heads. They also have installed harder valve seats in these heads, and they have been holding adjustments real good, over 50 hours between adjustments.

Now that my engine stays running well, I have been doing a lot of flying. I have logged over 410 hours on this little plane with no major airframe problems. It did take a little work on the tailspring, we ended up reinforcing it with steel tubing, which was recommended in one of your newsletters, and we also installed the wider wheel and tire recommended in a newsletter. Since then the Q-2 has handled well and I enjoy flying it weekly.

My most exciting trip was a solo run from my home in Twin Falls, ID up to the Arlington air show in WA in 1990. At the show, I flew many people in the Q-2, flying over to the San Juan Islands several times. I landed on San Juan Island for fuel and also on Orcas Island just for the fun of it. At sea level this little plane has plenty of power with 2 large people aboard.

I hope this letter may offer a little encouragement to those builders still working on their projects or those still working out the bugs. I love my little plane and will keep it always.

Robert Gillespie, 737 Campus Drive, Twin Falls, ID 83301

(208) 733-9303

Ed Note: Bob's plane is a colorful beauty too! I have seen it pictured twice this past year in KITPLANES and SPORT AVIATION.

How about this panel that may be worth more than the rest of the airplane?

Dear Jim,

Sorry I let my subscription to QBA expire. Enclosed is a $20 check. Since I talked to you last, I've had both fun and problems with my Q2.

I have 334 hrs on the aircraft, and am on my 3rd set of heads. The second set of heads failed shortly after takeoff last fall, and I returned immediately to the airport, landing downwind on 3 cylinders. At the time, I didn't know what was wrong - only that I'd gone from about 2900 to about 2300 RPM the engine was terribly rough, and I couldn't maintain level flight.

The culprit was a wrong set of 75 hp heads that Revmaster sold me after the original heads that came with the engine. According to Allen at Revmaster, the right-hand head in the vicinity of #3 cylinder was cracked in 4-places. Allen said I should not have been using these heads (wrong alloy and valve guides). Of course, when I bought, paid for, and received these heads (about an additional $350), no one at Revmaster made that distinction. According to Allen, the cracks cause pre-detonation, which caused both elements of both plugs to fuse (melt due to heat). Hence, there was no spark and no power from #3 cylinder.

When asked what they intended to do to rectify the situation, I was told "nothing" by Revmaster. They are practically out of the airplane engine business (I wonder why), and feel no obligation to make things good. Initially (and as a favor), Revmaster was willing to fabricate a new set of (good) heads for $750. I expressed dissatisfaction with this amount and Revmaster finally came down to $500. I didn't have much choice -- I got the third set of heads (after waiting for nearly 3 months), hoping I wasn't getting ripped off for a third time.

Not counting the Q2 canard airfoil and sorry directional control on the ground, the other bad part of the Q2 is the tailspring. I am on tailspring #5, and that isn't because of bad landings (ED. NOTE: Sez who? I mean not to malign your credibility here, but shouldn't we have a more objective opinion before we all start redesigning things????) I modified my tail section with a tube to accommodate installation of tailsprings without having to redo the airplane. The tube is large enough to accommodate twice the bi-directional layers called for in the plans. However, the tailspring really takes a beating (especially on rough runways). My airplane is configured as in the plans as far as tailwheel steering and rudder control is concerned. Once the tailspring breaks, there is no directional control other than differential brakes (another mod). I've managed to save the airplane three times using the brakes, but am getting tired of the excitement. I have ordered a steel leaf-type spring and will examine ways to install this type of suspension rather than the fiberglass rod (which I feel can't handle the pounding). Will let you know how I make out.

Don Ismari

ED. NOTE: From previous contributions, I know that Don is a plenty clever guy. Contrary to the advice of QAC, differential braking seems to be highly favored by experienced Q-2 pilots. It seems though, that the wild ride after landing calms down after 20-30 hours, probably due to pilot "training". If it doesn't, shouldn't we be taking a hard look at other aspects of the construction (e.g. GAC, wheel alignment, etc.) on the chance that we might somehow have a catawampus airplane?

Dear QBAers,

I'm going to try to give you an update on the progress of my Tri-Q or the lack of it. With a lack of good written info I proceeded with a mode C transponder installation before the June 30th deadline, and completed the instrument panel. Last summer I got the main wing layup done and this summer I managed to get the major canard layup done. There has been a month or so delay building a motorized R/C glider for my son, but it is flying now, so I'm back on the header tank. It's assembled but needs glassing on the inside.

After hearing from John Groff, I'm seriously thinking about installing an oil pressure switch on the fuel pump to run it whenever the engine runs. A cockpit run switch could be installed for fueling purposes. I'm too much of a Cessna 150 pilot to think of a pump switch. Gene Cash's header tank article in No. 34 came in handy, but I replaced the AN867-3 flange with an old Holley carb fuel inlet nut which I tapped to 3/8 pipe. I added a slight "v" to the bottom of the tank also.

With my new computer and a few programs I haven't learned yet, I plan to make some decisions on engine components and relative horsepower. All we can do is keep plugging along and one day the Q Birds will all fly.

Richard Barlow, Stockbridge, GA

Dear Jim,

Since it is dues time I will send you a few photos just to let you know I haven't given up on the Tri Q. The new shop is finished and although I still spend over half of the time at sea I have been making recent progress. The Revmaster is on the test stand and doing very well except for the RevFlow carburetor. The engine loads up in mid range. All cylinders are wired for CHT/EGT and the temperatures look good. Perhaps later I may take the engine and stand up to Revmaster and go through their needle collection.

The main objective at this time is to finish the wing and then go on to the canard. The fuselage is about 75 percent complete and is about ready for mounting the wing and canard.

All of the pertinent items in the QBA News are reviewed just prior to commencing a new phase of construction and they have proven to be very valuable.

One approach I am using to keep the cloth arranged properly while making the lay-ups is to use the yellow mesh drywall tape along the edges and occasionally through the middle of the larger pieces. If the tack is too much, the usual trick of sticking it to a clean table and pulling it off solves the problem. The tape is put on before cutting the cloth so that half the tape ends up on each side of the cut line. This helps to line up the cloth edge for the next panel.

As for the test stand, it is working very well. I outlined the firewall and the instrument panel on the plywood panels and positioned the panels the same distance apart as in the aircraft. The fuel tank is mounted so as to produce the same outlet height as the header tank. This way I will have a good idea as to where each firewall penetration will occur. Some small wheels on the heavy end of the stand help to move it around.

Jim, I want to thank you for hanging in there with the QBA Newsletter for all these years. Hopefully you will still be there when I get to the flying phase.

Best regards,

Robert K. Lockwood, Jr., 337 La Cresta Hts. Rd., El Cajon, CA 92021

Dear Jim:

David Gall's letter in the July/August Q-Talk finally got to me. Up to then I had tried different baffles and sealers in an attempt to keep the CHT in the green. I had a radiator engineer from one of the auto companies and an A&E look at the aircraft. They were long on theory but no recommendations. As an aside, on page 123 of 'Voyager' by Yeager & Rutan, they discuss the cooling problems they had because they followed basic formulas which were flat wrong.

On the Q, the right side was indicating 450 to 500 on climb and around 400 level. The left side was about 50 degrees cooler. Surgery was called for. Yarn was taped over much of the leading part of the cowl and the engine run. Airflow was observed and the areas of incision were determined. I cut a 2x2.5 in. square out of the right front of the cowl and a 2x1.5 out of the left side. This incision was just above the belt line and toward the center so as not to interfere with the baffling. Air scoops were glassed on the outside and chambers directing the air horizontally to the horizontal fins on the cylinder heads were glassed on the inside. Also installed were small baffles on the front floor of the regular baffle forcing air through the fins and not letting air pass under the fins.

Results: With 1.5 hours of flight. The right CHT stays well under 300 level and under 350 in a sustained climb. The left side runs about 50 degrees hotter.

Conclusion: The right port is too large and the left is too small but not by much. The CHT's are acceptable. The plane flies. To be determined is the drag penalty. Michigan weather is keeping Q9832 on the ground, probably for the winter. I realize that these remarks are premature but they may have value in further discussion about cooling.

Steve Stasinos, RR 1, Box 190 F, Rapids City, MI 49676

Dear Jim,

Here's something to pass along to other builders.

Bob Farnam and I are both building Q200s and we are working together on both. We found it advantageous to keep the top and bottom front fuselage shells separate for as long as possible. We completed the firewall, attached the canard and fuel tank, completed the canopy lip and the cockpit control systems before finally glassing the halves together.

We did the final fit of the top and bottom shells, but refrained from actually taping them together. Instead we used flox to cement in locating pins along the foam edges of the shells so that we could accurately put together the top and bottom at any time. We used AN3 bolts with the heads cut off and one end rounded to make the pins. They were cemented with flox into the top shell and left to harden. Then we prepared a well of flox in the bottom shell under each pin, greased the pins and let the shells stay together until the flox "receivers" were hard. We protected the top shell with plastic film so that the flox squeeze-out would not stick.

This is the same procedure described in the plans to make the canopy locating pins. We used tongue depressors bondoed to one shell or the other to line up the edges while the flox cured. We used four pins per side. We also used 5-Minute flox, but this was a mistake, in retrospect, as it is quite soft and the receiver holes opened up with use.

Keeping the shells separate had many advantages. Access to the cockpit and firewall area is greatly improved. We glassed the firewall and all the bulkheads to the bottom shell only. The only bulkhead in the top shell was the upper seatback bulkhead.

We were able to complete the mag box and all the firewall stiffeners, the rudder pedals, the main fuel tank, the armrests and center divider, attached the canard, put in the reflexer, the stick and the elevator controls. We attached the header tank to the top shell before attaching it to the bottom.

A major improvement is in placing the canopy lip. The procedure in the plans assumes that there is no access to the underside of the canopy when it is closed. If you can remove the top shell, the procedure becomes much simpler. With the top shell resting in place, we used sticks and bondo on the outside skin to position the canopy correctly. Then we took the top shell off the bottom, turned it upside down, protected the canopy with gray tape and glassed the lip directly. The outside skins align perfectly.


Jim Ham

ED. NOTE: Seems I remember that John Derr first reported this same success with holding the top shells off until the last minute. Since this is now a repeatable success, it should be considered by others.


Here is the real story on my bird. My Quickie-Plus was converted from stock using the Jinx Hawks & Brock McCaman method of mounting the Rotax 503 geared 2.24-1 turning a 52-inch dia 50 and 52 pitch wood DeMuth (real schizo dude) props. First flight was in Jan '91. After battling the dreaded "bog" too often, even with the 50 pitch, I hung a used 583 motor I bought from Beatty which required both pistons to be replaced (watch this guy). Used the 6-bolt gearbox from the 503. The engine slid right onto the 503 mount with the following changes: 1) stiffer Barry mounts, 2) 1/2" spacers between the engine and the aluminum plate to maintain prop centerline, 3) extend the 38mm Mikuni carbs outward via back-back carb adapters (my mount interfered with the aft carb float bowl). The RAVE exhaust was extensively cut & rotated to fit the Jinx/Brock cowl and contour with the canard, with almost 3 inches added in the front section for good measure (this limited my top end to only 7100 RPM static with the 52 pitch prop). No adverse flying characteristics were noted with the pipe-from-hell sticking out the side. I got the radiator from LEAF and mounted it in an air box with cowl flap below the mount. Spud fixed me up with the K&N RU-2780 air cleaners. I soldered up the cooling tank assembly with 3/4 copper plumbing. The engine ran very cool, burned 5-6 GPH cruising 150-155 MPH at 7100 RPM. This made the plane a Quickie-Supreme, but I still liked to call it the buzz bomb. It weighed 340 lb empty vs. 315. The Q bird now has 175 hours. More on the past tense later in the story.

Some interesting things have happened since the fantastic Ottawa fly-in. I ran it out of gas on the first leg back after 60 minutes of flying, due to me not topping it off again when returning to the ramp after my brakes "flipped". My gas gauge tube is really hard to see through so I sometimes use time of flight. I used the pull start chord to turn the prop horizontal and landed OK in a little hayfield. Love those big tires. Got a ride to my intended airport (Monett, MO), got gas and took off from the road adjacent to the pasture. Spent the night in Arkansas after again scud running the Ozarks in rain. Next morning, it was drizzling but supposed to clear ahead. During a lull, took off and found heavier rain over Conway. After circling the runway waiting for a lull, with the canopy fogging up faster than I could wipe it clear, I decided to land. 85 MPH was not enough to prevent the canard stall in the flare so the 52x52 was now Arkansas toothpicks. Rented a car and drove back to Huntsville to pick up the 52x50. Uneventful return to the homedrome.

I did time a climb to 10,000 ft from brake release at Roscoe Turner, MS (425 MSL). 7 minutes, without even trying! This is with full gas, extra oil, extra clothes, tools, etc... The world record is 13 2/3's minutes. Later attended a local airshow, at the end of which it started drizzling so there I was having to fly back in the you-know-what again. It is strange, looking out at water puddled up on the canard just forward of the elevators. Bank left, it runs left, bank right, it runs right. This time I drug it into my grass strip at 90 and turned off the engine 1 foot above the grass in level right with no problems. At this point I swore I would soon install the VG's. Next weekend I flew to Moontown Airport to visit my Dragonfly project. While returning to the buzz bomb's home (at a friends' field which has a hangar), at 5500 RPM and 150 MPH in steady cruise, minding my own business and generally happy, KABOOM! SHAKE! Silence. Had a nice view of the stopped prop blade and saw no smoke coming from the cowl, so not too bad. Again, pulled the prop horizontal and glided into my strip, which just happened to be below. I am getting too much practice gliding this plane in.

This letter is not about bragging on my luck in overcoming pilot errors or mechanical failures. It is about what happened to the engine. The rear connecting rod broke in half with the piston at BDC. The half still connected to the crank cut the case in half and knocked out the rear engine mounting bolts; along with the rotary valve and side carb mount plate. The tubular engine mount cracked, the aluminum plate warped, but the engine remained attached. This was a good test of the mount design and firewall mod, it passed. Good job Jinx/Brock. Both Beatty at Airscrew (appropriate name) and the boys at Fast Inc. (good supply of performance Rotax engine parts) had not heard of stock 583's breaking rods, but the racing tech rep at Bombardier was able to guess it was a rod when I told him the engine exploded. It turns out that the early 583 had weak rods. Later rods are stronger, and recommended I install them if using the engine in a plane. My engine was two years old and had the weak rods.

If anybody else is using this motor, ensure that you have the good rods. The snowmobile guys turn these things 9000+ RPM, so my 7100 was nothing. It was a good thing that this happened while over a good landing spot in a plane with excellent engine-out (which is probably like engine-in with an Onan I suppose) characteristics. I am real glad that this did not happen while I was pulling the previously mentioned rain stunts, but if it did the VG's would have come in real handy.

Would I install another 583 in my plane? Yes. Will I? Maybe. I loved the power. You saw it doing level knife-edge and climb out at 2000 FPM from a pitch buck at Ottawa. The noise was next on my list to work on. It had no muffler at Ottawa. For now I can't justify the cost of a replacement because I need to afford to build my hangar. Guess I'll weld up a new mount (with provision for the aforementioned 583 carb interferences) and re-install the 503. I designed the 583 installation to allow, interchangeability with the 503 including using the same cowl. The good news is the 583's CDI bolted right into the 503 so I won't have to mess with the points anymore and can use the coil and brain, which I had on the firewall for the 583. Beatty said the CDI runs better. The K&N air filters may also help with the bog (it had scrunched up UNI's). It was getting 6700 RPM static with the 503 (52x50, two 38 mm Miks) before I removed it for the 583.

By the way, Chuck Wapole (Dragonfly type like me) likes to call me Captain Nitrous because I was contemplating at last year's fly-in using Nitrous Oxide injection as a bog cure. The 583 was a better solution.

Chris Barber, P. O. Box 101, Toney, AL 35773

(205) 971-9341 work

Dear Jim,

Howdy again! Well I made the long journey home from Ottawa safe and sound! 2800 S.M., 23 hours of cross-country time and another hour showing off while there, 77 gallons (3.5 gals/hr) of 100LL, a priceless wealth of information, and best of all many friends made. It was truly a great trip. I do sometimes wonder, though, what y'all see in that flat country!

The plane and the Rotax both performed beautifully! Had about a 10-15 minute period over northwest Kansas that I thought I would be making an emergency landing due to engine running really bad. My CHT had died earlier in the trip and when it started running bad it came to life quickly enough for me to see it swing past 400' and then go back into la-la land. Thoughts of ignition failure and water in gas ran through my head (those of you there know my story on that, and by the way, it was solved by draining fuel and running air through tank for several hours). It continued to run at about 4,500 RPM and was extremely rough. I maintained altitude and just slowed down trying to find a runway. After about 15 minutes of frantically trying to figure out where I was and where a runway was, the engine started running normally and away we went. Nearest I can figure is it got a big bubble of straight oil or straight gas. This happened about 20 minutes after a fuel stop. I'm told they run really rough and very hot on straight oil. After arriving home, I swore that I'd never make a cross-country like that again in a Q1. But that was several months ago and I'm starting to look for a reason to go somewhere!

I've now got 140 hours on the little bird and that since the first flight on Nov. 26, 1991. One year!

I sure love winter flying - the performance is great. Don't put 'em away, guys - get 'em out and have fun. My flying over the last few weeks has been in the 25 degree range. So much better than this summer having to fly out of 6,000' airports on 100 degree days!!!

I'm now running a 160 Main Jet, 8L2 Needle richest groove. This is yielding 1000 at full throttle and 1100 at cruise.

About the bog issue that seems to be bothering the less superior minded Rotax Quickie jocks (is there a Quickie jock with a mind?). I have not experienced it, Barber and Bounds don't believe me on this. (It's not going to bog, you guys!) I have a couple ideas. 1) Dual CDI Ignition from Airscrew (Beatty). 2) I did NOT use the 90-degree bend that is standard on all exhaust cans (from the manifold to the pipe). This would shorten my pipe, which is not what others are having to do. 3) I run a rich mixture. I about lost my life due to an overly lean mixture and therefore always run rich. Never fouled a plug - just richer than what's needed.

Talked to Brock a couple weeks back. Seems he is done flying his Quickie, has sold his engine and is building a Cassutt.

Sorry to hear about Barber's misfortune as of late. But we did need someone to test this mount for us. Thanks Chris! Go for the record with the 503, might not be seven minutes but I know even mine will do better than thirteen!

Thanks to all who showed up at Ottawa and made my trip worthwhile!

Jon Finley, 2217 Choteau St., Helena, MT 59601

(406) 442-5172 H, (406) 442-6665 W

Dear Jim,

After reading last months' newsletter suggesting adding two inches to the exhaust just in front of the canister on the Rotax 503 I was anxious to give it a try. My Quickie typically would not hit the power band until the runway was well behind me and I was struggling into the air Onan style. However when it finally did "get on the pipe", it did great, although the power band remained quite narrow. I cut my pipe and added 2 and 1/8 inches. My next takeoff was fantastic!! I had excellent power right from initial power application until I shut it off back at the hangar. I'm telling you it took the power just like a REAL airplane. It's GREAT!! I've now flown with all three of the gears Rotax has to offer and with 3 various prop combinations. The combination I have finally arrived at is a 52 x 53 Prince prop with the 2.24 gear and the magic of the 2 and 1/8 inches added to the pipe. The exhaust change effectively lowered the torque curve and widened the power band. Top end performance is still excellent with a comfortable cruise at 5800 RPM and 130 MPH, I can push it to red line in level flight.

By the way, you poor slobs that didn't make it to Oshkosh this year missed several great opportunities to swap stories with fellow QBAers; there was the backyard cookout (behind a dorm at UWO), the wine and cheese party, the Quickie Forum (which was thoughtfully broken down into 2 groups for Q-1 and Q-2 folks), a couple of back porch meetings and a whole bunch of flightline B.S.

I stopped by my local Onan dealer a few days ago and picked up a brochure on the new engine available that looks to me for all the world just like our familiar little putt-putt - but this one has electronic ignition and claims 24 factory equipped horse power. It's called the Performer 24, model #P224. Looks like it would sit right on an existing Onan engine mount. Someone let us know if you give it a try - sells new for about $800.

One final tip and I'll sign off: I found something great to make vortex generators from. Bow hunters call them vanes. Buy them at an archery supply place. They are the "feathers" for an arrow, but they are made from a pliable plastic. They come with a little base on them made for gluing down and you can cut them to size quite easily with a razor knife. You can get 4 VG's from one 5" vane. About $2.50 for a dozen vanes.

N17UQ has never been in better shape, now equipped with a full castering tail wheel, hydraulic brakes (available from Ken Brock) and the right combination of engine, prop, gear & pipe. My thanks to Norm Howell for stopping in Little Rock to help me annual the bird. We also added a back-up fuel pump (after mine quit in flight), works great ... cheap insurance.

Jerry Homsley, Cabot, Arkansas

ED. NOTE: And on the VG subject, Charlie Lipke has been successfully flying for several years now with turkey feather VG's from arrow shafts. Check me out at the next airshow ... he put one on my hat bill and I haven't walked crooked in the rain ever since!

Hi Jim and fellow QBAers:

Well I'm getting somewhat frustrated with my efforts at obtaining an O-200 for my Q-2 project. The engine I was considering had a crack in the oil slinger ring on the crankshaft and some of my EAA friends have been advising me against using it even if it is welded and turned properly. I have also been looking at parts costs for the O-200 and they're quite spendy. At present I'm leaning toward an EA-81 Subaru engine with a Lou Ross geared reduction.

I thought Mike Bergin's article in the last issue on Composite Tips was quite helpful. I have also heard that Neico Aviation (Lancair) sells a high-fill primer that is excellent. Anybody out there tried it?

Here's my $20 for another year and it's money well spent. If you folks keep inspiring me with Q-Talk, I just might get this Q-Bird in the air yet!

Preston North, (Note address change) P. O. Box 6201, Fargo, ND 58103

ED. NOTE: WARNING RE: BERGIN ARTICLE IN LAST ISSUE - Per Burt Rutan's serious concerns, DO NOT wipe down your airfoils or other glass covered styrofoam parts with solvents that will eat away the underlying styrofoam!!!!! DO NOT kid yourself that you do not have pinholes in your multi-laminate layups. You will be in for a BIG surprise. I was assuming Mike was recommending a damp rag, but I can see you guys splashing the solvent on while wiping. DON'T DO IT.

Dear Jim:

I am enclosing my dues for 1993 and a photo of C-FQQQ, my O-235 powered craft that I call a Q-115 (115 HP). I have flown it once, last July, but engine vibrations, due to a bent flange on the used engine I installed, have grounded me until I get my new crankshaft installed. Performance was fantastic (after flying the Revmaster) with a climb out of 1200 fpm at 125 mph TAS and 5000 feet density altitude. Top speed, in spite of the severe vibration, was 195 mph TAS, at 2800 rpm (red line) using a Warnke prop. I have used Dragonfly Mk. II inboard landing gear which has significantly improved the ground handling.

I enjoyed reading Mike Bergin's article on finishing in the last issue. In regard to his comments regarding not sanding away any glass fiber I share the conservative approach and have used the sandblasting method. A number of years ago one of the newsletters provided information on a product that is as effective as sandblasting but does not create the mess. The product is a wheel that fits in an electric drill. It has plastic bristles that are impregnated with an abrasive. I found it very effective in reaching the depressions in the weave of the fabric but it will not cut the fabric unless a great deal of pressure is used while it is held in one spot. The only disadvantage I have found is that it doesn't work very well unless the resin is well cured. The product is made by Anderson Wheel, Catalog #22343 DM3 B040120. It is available from: Industrial Supplies Co., 1291 NW 65th Place, Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33309. Phone (305) 973-9779.

Kimbull McAndrew, Canada

ED> NOTE: Outstanding! I have fantasized about inboard gear on a Q-2 ever since the Mark II Dragonfly came out (and I experienced a Q-200 landing on a narrow runway!). Do tell how you did it sometime, OK? Your bird looks gorgeous.

Dear Jim,

Enclosed is $20 for our subscription. My partner (Harry Dirks) and I just received the N number for our Q2 (S.N. 2453). 32DK should experience first flight this spring. We have the GU canard and the 64 hp Revmaster with a Posa carburetor. Some of the modifications we have made are: a forward hinging canopy with quick disconnect hinge pins, dual throttle, mixture & brake controls, T-tail and aileron reflexer, belly board with landing lights, floating brake caliper, strobe lights, heat muff and adjustable seat backs.

In September of last year we moved the pieces to the airport for final assembly. November 13th we started the engine for the first time since 1983. It has been taxied for 7 hours so far and it will take me many more hours before I am competent in a taildragger. We will build a new tail wheel fork for the soft rubber tail wheel we purchased before we do the weight and balance.

A friend in town completed his Q2 in 1986. Paul Adams has a couple hundred hours on 14PA. It is a 75 hp Revmaster with the GU canard. Paul taxied our Q2 and said it feels similar to his.

Thank you for your efforts as editor. We really enjoy reading Q-TALK and will send more news when we achieve first flight! Tell your wife thank you also; if she has to put up with the grief my wife does when I do our EAA newsletter! Also, would you add a permanent statement to the newsletter stating the width of print you prefer to receive? I am sure you have mentioned it in the past but I can't remember and or find it just now.

P.S. We changed to aircraft tires and have the original ones for sale if any one is interested. $20.

Charles Kuhlman, 1810 E. Olive, Marshalltown, IA 50158

(515) 753-7903 H, 754-3780 work

ED. NOTE: If you can force yourself to live with a fat, white margin on the right side of a page, and I know this may put knots in your stomach, your typing should be done inside a 4 and 3/4" area. It may cause you to use an extra page of paper but what it does for me is just wonderful. Charlie, I think your suggestion to add a permanent statement to this effect is right on. Thanks. Like yourself, more guys are taking the time to send typed copy, but, again, IT'S NOT REQUIRED. Those of you who can't type can just hand write it and don't apologize for your scribble. Remember, I can read "doctor's chicken scratch" just fine, and you can't get worse than that. (Do they have a two semester course on that in med school or sumpthin'?) Jon Finley has turned out to be a good right-hand man in MT as I have been sending him typed copy which is not in my format and he uses a computerized page scanner to suck up your typing, convert it for use in Wordstar and sends it to me on a disk so I can correct your typos and manipulate it any which way I want. Ain't science wonderful. AND ...Jon is pretty quick about it. Saves me lots of retyping and keeps me on this job with a pleasant attitude (you know how I can get). Thanks Jon.

Dear Jim,

It has been a little while since I've written and I'll probably keep this one short because my typing isn't that good. I am shooting for the 4 7/8" margin you asked for in times past. I've finally "decided" to own up to the fact that my chances of successfully completing Quickie S/N 415 are slim and none. I have the rough fuselage complete, but that seems to be about as far as my wife's patience will allow. To say that she is not supportive of the project would be an understatement. The recent crash of a homebuilt near my home, to which my wife was one of the first witnesses didn't help my cause in the least. So it was fun while it lasted, I guess it's back to the flying spam can for me. I have the complete airframe kit with only the rough fuselage completed, epoxy ratio pump, hot wire saws, all past QBA newsletters, etc. I'd like to get $1,200.00 for everything or best offer. I've got to tell you Jim, reading all those newsletters was almost as much fun as working on the plane. Then again, maybe that's what got me in trouble with the misses! Thanks for a great newsletter and your past assistance.

Michael P. Menke, Rosamond, CA

(805) 256-4121


Way back when I lost my Revmaster $$ in the QA crash. I had enough money to buy another or go relearn how to fly. I regret the years it has taken me to get back to "Zoomer" but not my experiences. I 'renewed' my private, got a commercial, instrument, ground instructor, CFI, CFII and ATP certificates.

I've instructed, ferried aircraft, flown bank mail, chartered, flown Grand Canyon tours and now fly for a West Coast regional, with experience in the 30 passenger Brasilia and the 19-seat Jetstream turboprops.

The hardest was the Grand Canyon flying in C-207 and C-402 aircraft. I had one 747 crew tell me, five minutes out of Las Vegas, that my single pilot workload was impossible. It was almost true.

Crew flying has saved me lots of embarrassment. "Ah, Captain, would you like the flags up?", is a lot easier to explain than "I noticed you flew the whole trip with 'flaps 10' (indicator marks visible from the aft passenger compartment) and I'm from the FAA." (I'm not suggesting I was involved in either of these...)

The most dangerous flying I've done in almost 6000 hours has been in high workload, tight spot, gotta go single pilot situations. "I was concerned about the crosswind/worried about the approach/forgot to..." has sometimes distracted me from an orderly approach to safe flying. My single pilot backup? The checklist. My question?

Before I finish my Q-Bird only to break it because "I forgot..." what have other members worked up for their checklists? Perhaps this should be a classified:


Anybody have a good one? Of course, I'll make it fit my aircraft.

Bob Lane

Dear Jim,

Enclosed is a sketch of a semi-clever way of making mass balances for my Q235. Lead doesn't stick to steel tubing very well - you may want to provide a mechanical method to prevent lead from falling out of the balance tube and rolling around amid all the long-forgotten bits and pieces on the floorboard.

Lead can probably be obtained at any tire shop for the asking - discarded tire weights.

Weld up a small ladle out of maybe 1.25" junk tubing. Weld on a bottom and some sort of handle that can be grasped with vise grips. Dump a few weights into ladle, melt it with torch and fish out steel fittings with a coat hanger wire. Easy, fast and happens at surprisingly low temperature (300 deg C, ? deg F).

And here we are, 55 years later, making lead soldiers again.

Quentin Durham

Dear Jim,

N500JD finally has an Airworthiness Certificate after 11 years, 3600 hours of my time and a bunch of hours in surface finishing by someone else. I got it to the preliminary fill stage before being reassigned to a position that has me traveling out of the country 60% of the time. Add the fact that I have acquired allergies to polyester and solvents (but not epoxy!) from the sick building I worked in and it became clear that I had to hire out the final fill and paint. I have about $33,000 invested in the plane, including $1000 for the trailer, $6500 for the engine and its accessories, $5000 for avionics and engine monitoring, $800 for upholstery and $7,000 in subcontracted labor and materials for the surface finish.

The engine is a Rotorway RW-100 with a HAPI electronic ignition system, dual Ultracarbs from Mosler, oil cooler inside the cowl and a water radiator in the belly scoop, each with separate thermostats. Wiring and plumbing are a nightmare! I'm still working out the synchronization of throttle cables: the dual throttle and mixture cables require slightly different travel because of the different lengths of cable. The longer the cable, the more travel needed at the control because the housings compress proportionally to their length. I solved the problem by making a lever, pivoted at one end, with the cables attached at different radial positions.

After thinking about the paint scheme for 11 years, I decided to use seismograms. What else would you expect from a seismologist? The left side is the 1989 Loma Prieta, California earthquake and the right side a deep earthquake from the Hindu Kush region of Afghanistan, both recorded at Albuquerque.

I trailered it to Moriarty for the New Mexico fly-in (Charlie Harris was the only other Q-ship present). I got in a little taxi time, but first flight will have to wait until January, after I return from Africa and polish my very rusty flying skills. The cowl has a few cutouts for added clearance, necessitated by changing from a single to dual carbs and by insulating the exhaust pipes. These will all be covered over when the bugs are all worked out. Empty weight: 735 lbs with full electrical system. Fuel capacity: 30 gal. If nothing else, it's going to be a mover and shaker!

Thank you all for your help and encouragement.

John Derr, 19 Escena Dr., Tijeras, NM 87059

Dear Jim:

I see that it is once again time to renew my valued subscription to the Quickie Builder's Bible. Along with my check may I include another year's worth of thanks for the wonderful work you do and the contributions of other builders that make the publication so valuable to all of us.

The following is a method my father designed for the mounting of the canard. It worked beautifully for cutting the fuselage and positioning for glassing.

It consists of a 2x4 bondoed across the front, over the canard with 2 turnbuckles. The bottom hook of the turnbuckle was opened so as to make it easy to slide the sling on and off. The sling is made from two auto fan belts. (Local gas stations have lots of them laying around.) The belts were cut and a ring was attached on each end with tin strips riveted to the ends. 12" pieces of chain were run through the loops and hooked over the lower hook of the turnbuckles.

By simply slipping the fan belts around the canard and hooking them to the turnbuckles, you can now suspend the canard. The turnbuckles allow for minute adjustments on either side for leveling.

I used Dennis Clark's wing/canard mounting techniques as described in the Nov/Dec 1990 QBA coupled with the water-tube leveling technique. They worked exceptionally well.

To adjust the incidence, I used a scissor jack under the middle of the canard to attain the correct angle. Doing this single handed was a chore, but none the less, it came out very satisfactorily.

The sling was also handy for positioning the canard for the fitting of the elevators. Plus it was nice to see the canard hanging under the fuselage instead of hanging from the top of the garage until it was time to mount it.

Jerry Marstall, Lincoln, MA

You can order a PDF or printed copy of Q-talk #36 by using the Q-talk Back Issue Order Page.