DATA DUMP POST

I moved from Aviad in Spain to Tech Pro Aviation in Olomouc, Czech Republic. I have a ton of work to do here as usual as I work side-by-side with Martin on a long topic list. For example:

  • Controlling the next 3 containers of Merlin’s for shipment.
  • Sorting painting specs for next aircraft shipment.
  • Checking 750 and 1450 float production.
  • Working on Vtwin and avionics installation.
  • Making plan to double or triple aircraft production.
  • Working on electric power system for TrueLite and Merlin Lite.
  • Making plan for Merlin Lite testing and compliance documents.
  • Strategic plan for MOSAIC aircraft.

That is just a partial list. I am here until my work is done, but I sure miss Florida weather.

It only snowed twice this week. Once for 3 days and once for 4 days.

I will have a lot to show and report on over the next few weeks of work here. To keep up I will try to post more often. Here is a big post, but mostly photos and in random order.

Here are the 750 float side skins. To build a tool to press the curve into the skins could cost some $2,000. Martin designed a rolling/pressing tool using steel bar and hard-pressed wood to make the same curve but for a cost closer to $200. These skins along with the bulkheads and all the other parts are epoxy-primed on the interior sides. The parts kits will be sent to Paul at M-Squared for assembly. Parts kits take about 10% of the shipping space of assembled floats. And I like to dump more work on Paul…..

Continuing with 1450 floats:

The bigger amphibious floats have many interesting upgrades including a servo to control the water rudders. That saves a lot of rigging. And new hydraulics. More on this later. And Beringer wheels & brakes with improved geometry. Will probably have to write more on floats later.

I often get asked when we will have the Merlin II ready. The answer is about 6 years ago. The Merlin II has been flying and in production for a long time. I just do not promote it in USA as I think 165 of 2-seat LSA models kinda fills the market considering only about 200 are sold each year. Here is a new Merlin II with a Rotax engine mount ready to ship. We offer the Merlin II with yoke or stick control.

Plus, we have the nice Merlin II demo available if someone wanted a Merlin II quickly and at a good price.

Demo Merlin II with Rotax 912 installed.

And for the Merlin Lite fans, here we have a set of short wings getting prepped for painting. They will ship to USA in the next container and be on display at SNF. Now I have to choose to show the Merlin Lite with the long wings or short wings at SNF. One wing set will be on display, the other installed. Or maybe I install one of each on the display Merlin Lite. I wonder if anyone will notice? Or ask if we install to opposite sides for flying in the southern hemisphere? I am not sure I will do this. But it might be fun. Just won’t be doing any flight demos.

Here is one major change that my tall Merlin customers will appreciate. The instrument panel and bulkhead are moved up. I took a photo sitting in the exact same position in a HKS and a Vtwin Merlin. You can see the knee room has nearly doubled. I measured 16cm vs. 12cm. Plus, the firewall shelf and cavity for the Rotax 582 starter motor are gone. This means those pilots with big feet have a lot more toe room as well.

Here are 3 changes on the tail:

  • The horizontal stabilizer installation is changed to the method I used on the SportCruiser: 2 pins for the front then 2 bolts laterally for the rear. That makes installation about 200 times easier.
  • The rudder cables are slightly repositioned and with bigger exit failings.
  • The vertical stabilizer fairing is now taller for increased yaw stability.

Plenty more to show but I need to get back to work!

BTW, I get to visit my son, Davi, in Prague on the weekends. I try not to distract him during exam time, but everyone needs a break once in a while. He is halfway through an electrical engineering/computer science degree.

CHIP