Revolutionary? That’s a bold claim. But I think I can back it up. Here is an excerpt from our forthcoming press release:
Dayton, Ohio: Aeromarine is making the bold claim that their new Part 103 ultralight aircraft is truly revolutionary. “This is not your 1980s ultralight’ claims designer Chip W. Erwin. “I know, I was there. Our new Merlin Lite has real aircraft features and appeal: 7 windows, a door, a cockpit, baggage capacity and space, an instrument panel. And the list goes on”.
The Merlin Lite is based on the Merlin, a popular single seat personal sport aircraft that costs under $40k and cruises at 120mph. The cockpit size of the Merlin Lite is nearly the same size and capacity as the Merlin but the powerplant is scaled down and the wing aspect ratio is increased.
The extensive features INCLUDED or available with the Merlin Lite are not often found on your typical tube & fabric ultralight:
|FULL EFIS WITH ARTIFICIAL HORIZON AND GPS|
|CABIN HEAT AND DEFROSTER|
|DUAL INDEPENDENT HYDRAULIC BRAKES|
|TRICYCLE OR TAILDRAGGER|
|12 V POWER SUPPLY – PHONE/IPAD CHARGER|
|PUSHROD CONTROLS WITH BEARINGS|
|5 POSITION FLAPS|
|3D TAPERED WING, OPTIONAL SPEED WING|
|QUALIFIES AS A MOTORGLIDER|
|DUAL IGNITION LIQUID-COOLED ENGINE|
|OPTIONAL ELECTRIC POWER (COMING SOON)|
|5 GALLON WING TANK, EXPANDABLE TO 10 GAL.|
|BRS 500 RESCUE SYSTEM|
|LARGE BAGGAGE AREA|
|2 OR 3-BLADE GROUND ADJUSTABLE CARBON PROPELLER|
The Merlin Lite meets the FAA Part 103 rules which means no license, medical, registration or certification required. The first public display will be at the Midwest Expo in Mt. Vernon, Illinois beginning September 10, 2020.
Here are some photos form the shop. The BRS is now installed. This week will be the big push to finish the Merlin Lite so we can bring it to our booth at the Midwest Expo. There is still a lot of work to do but I think we are on target. Tundra tire axles are being welded up this week. Fuel tank is nearly finished. Panel is finished. Controls are mostly finished. When I am in Dayton I am working long hours on this aircraft and with a customer Merlin build program as well so writing blogs get delayed. But I will make an effort to post more progress photos.
There will be many doubters about our ability to meet the tight Part 103 parameters. Fine, bring it on! I will bring some scales to the Midwest Expo. Anyone can check their weight on the scales to verify accuracy then we will weigh the Merlin Lite. Currently we are 4.2 lbs under the limit! Others will question our ability to meet the 24 knot stall speed restriction with only a 22 foot wing span. Well, they are right. But what they don’t know is our first Merlin Lite has the speed wing. To meet Part 103 we will install our UL wing pictured above. This wing has a larger wing area and a very long-span 3-hinge Fowler flap. Part 103 rules allow lift enhancing devices. Furthermore, the stall speed is measured with only a 170 lb pilot and maybe a quart of fuel. So bring it on! Revolutionary new ultralight? I think so.
See the Merlin Lite page. I have posted updated pricing and features/options list.