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Q-talk 3 - LETTERS

Dear Jim,

Sorry to be a taker and not much of a giver. I have no liability qualms, but didn't come up with much new to share. I anxiously await each new issue and have used a number of suggestions. All my parts are completed and I have the plane in Sanford, FL where Bud's Aviation is assisting me with final assembly.

Lawrence Pratt - Wilton Manors, FL


I think QBA should be available to all. Some of these people need our help and don't know too much about building an airplane. Some of us are experimenters, gadgeteers, designers or just plain stupid and don't mind telling the rest of the world what kind of hole we are digging!

My partner and I work only one night a week, but our ship is on its tri-gear, the swing away mount is done, the split rudder is done and we are now making the exhaust system and cowl for a C-85.

ED. NOTE: See photo page for Bill Bertrand's highly modified project. These guys designed a tri-gear before Swing's was available and despite the complications mods bring, they're making steady progress.

Dear Jim,

My partner, Dr. Jay Ballhagen, now has 60 hours on our Q-2. We have had the usual problems of ground handling and engine cooling. After breaking the tailspring, we inverted the tailwheel and really beefed up the new spring. With the tail now several inches higher, we have much better visibility and feel the landings are better controlled as well.

Air handling is really excellent except for a tendency for the right wing to drop. With 2 aboard, we are getting around 150 mph cruise and top speed with pilot only is around 175.

This summer or fall we may feel confident enough for a cross-country from Montana to Texas. We'll keep you posted. No more generic stuff please - I like to hear your opinions.

John Shryock - Kalispell, MT


Like many other builders, I receive the same "wise" remarks about building an aircraft in a basement shop. Here's a photo (see photo pages) taken by a local newspaper showing how Cathy and I took the canard out of the basement window last spring.

When I mounted the canard to the fuselage, I used a tip from QUICKTALK and lowered the fuselage to the leveled canard which was Bondoed to the floor. I have a 4-way bubble level inside the fuselage just ahead of the fuel tank.

I want to report good results from the WANTED classified I placed in QUICKTALK. I picked up a "never used" Revmaster with 75 hp heads from a Midwest builder. I received 4 replies to the ad and had an opportunity to talk with 3 of the builders. Proof that QUICKTALK is read thoroughly is that 2 phone calls came on the same day that I received my copy.

John Touchet - Fond du Lac, WI

UPDATE: DRAGON ENGINE CORPORATION (courtesy of Taylor Boyer): DEC recently relocated to 1272 State Ave., Marysville, WA 98270, (206) 774-0854. In Oct. '85, Dragon signed a manufacturing agreement with Sadler Engines of Houston, TX to deliver 1200 radial engines. Encountering long delays, Dragon received 13 engines but found inadequate quality control. Dragon renegotiated with new stipulations and, thus satisfied, set about preparations for a $1.8 million stock offering to get the program cranking up. Sadler thoughtfully advised Dragon at about this time that they were having financial difficulties that would delay any engines AT LEAST 3-6 months. (And so it goes). Now in a bind, Dragon terminated their offerings, and its President resigned. Dragon management needs $50,000 now to reorganize operations and continue until such time as Sadler or someone else is able to deliver quality engines. (Taylor Boyer asks: Can a Dragon suffer a flameout???).

Dear Jim:

I am puzzled on what steps I can take to recover about $700 worth of parts not received from QAC. Quickie Aircraft mentioned in a letter that if anything happened to them that Aircraft Spruce was supposed to handle the items paid for after the shutdown. I haven't heard anything from them or my parts.

Bob Polander

ED. NOTE: Far, far too late, Bob, the horse was out of the barn long ago. You just lost $700. Be of good cheer...Aircraft Spruce lost $38,000 and company president Jim Irwin hasn't heard from Sheehan and knows nothing about the mythical QAC "arrangement".

Dear Jim,

Project progress: not rapid, but steady. Keeping at it seems a good motto. I commute workdays 19 miles to Wellington by suburban train. General application to the project is one (positive) hour nearly every evening and 7-10 hours over weekends. A diary is a useful record, and a separate log is kept for glass work.

One of the greatest little hints I have benefited from your QUICKTALK is the use of paper towels for picking up excess epoxy in difficult areas - now I use them anywhere. It is good to see what is not needed going out and the fibers lay closer together for maximum strength.

Stirring sticks: Tinsnips make a quick job of flattening off ends; then give the ends a rub on a rough wood surface to smooth them off a bit.

John Dunn - Porirua, New Zealand

Dear Jim

I am sending along an ad to sell my Q-2. As much as I hate to do it, I must. Two reasons: 1. It's too hot for an old guy and, 2. I can't afford 2 airplanes (have just completed restoration of my old 1946 Fleet Canuck Model 80).

The building experience was something else. It took me 2200 hours and 4 years to complete. I could echo the comments of many others with our experiences with QAC. I'm glad it is now past experience as far as QAC is concerned.

Don Keizer - Power River, British Columbia

(ED. NOTE: How about a picture of that Canuck so we can see what you're up to, Don? I admire your unusual good sense to recognize the limitations of your skills in handling a hot airplane).

Dear Jim,

You can put my phone number down for Eastern Canada Q-1 builders: (416) 846-6146 and I can serve as a clearing house for the others in this area. I'll put together a column on alternate powerplants if you can have some of the fellows direct mail here. I have just completed an adaptation of Ed Miller's motor mount for the Rotax 447 that I plan to install in my Quickie.

Thanks for the tip about microwaving the Epoxy before use. Unfortunately my wife read the last newsletter too..Drats!

Ken Norwick - 28 Evaline Ct., Bramalea, Ontario, CANADA

Dear Jim

Without factory support, it is imperative that important information about our aircraft continues to have a central point of dissemination. I'm glad you have had the "guts" and ability to continue to do the job of editing and printing the newsletter. I can't see how you or any of us could be liable for our contributions to this "experimental" field we are in, I can identify with your concern about liability. My throat gets dry every time I receive a registered letter.

The only thing I've done since moving to California 1.5 years ago was my instrument panel and the canopy. I've enclosed a couple photos.

Bob Davis - Competition Aircraft, Inc., Grass Valley, CA

Dear Irascible Old Editor, my favorite one:

Norm Howell's record flight made the AP distribution, and so our local newspaper. The only thing I can't understand (about the report) is why he couldn't have provided public praise of QAC too (and Gene!). (ED. NOTE: probably because Gene provides plenty enough of that all by himself). Speaking of that, I hope we will have some definitive news about QAC one of these days.

I flew our Quickie this morning in "feather wrenching" turbulence. It's been an unusually good winter for flying and I've seldom gone more than 2 or 3 weeks between flights. The machine is within a couple of hours of 300 flight hour at my hands and shows little effects of its age (6+ yrs.), except for accumulated hangar rash. The engine is down 50 rpm or so from its better days, but still hauls my considerable avoirdupois into the air without frightening me or the local populace too much as long as I utilize a cool morning or evening.

Kent Hubin - Kent, OH

You can order a PDF or printed copy of Q-talk #3 by using the Q-talk Back Issue Order Page.