LoCamp N527CL Begins Flight Testing!

 

 Eds a Happy Guy 12 11 15

 

That's me and N527CL after our second flight!

 

Persistence pays in any human endeavor, but it is an absolute necessity in experimental aircraft homebuilding.  If I ever had any doubts, the push to finish and fly N527CL, the first completion of a production LoCamp kit, certainly dispelled them.  But it has finally happened, and we are on to a full schedule of flight testing, performance verification and documentation.  What fun!

 

After a long season of engine runs, taxi-testing and tweaking the aircraft, it and I took to the December skies over our home base at Tri-County Airport (KLNR) near Lone Rock, Wisconsin, quite to the surprise and delight of our faithful airport crew, who were expecting only a high-speed taxi test.  Weather conditions were perfect; CAVU, 45° F, wind right down Runway 27 at 8 kts.  My stated objective was to get the tail up and taxi down the mile-long asphalt strip, but I was fully prepared for flight, having reviewed the first-flight test cards, tanked plenty of avgas, and donned the fire-retardant flight suit. My policy was to not set a date and time for a first flight, but to always keep my options open to make this critical personal decision in the moment, free of the pressure an expectant audience would create.

 

When the LoCamp tail came up, the airplane was ready to fly, and so was I.  All of the months and years of working steadily, if slowly, to realize this dream came to fruitiion in that moment, and the feeling was marvelous. 

 

The first flight was short, only about ten minutes, but the aircraft performed flawlessly and flew beautifully.  Light and harmonious controls combined with impressive throttle responsiveness from the Rotec R2800, making the overall aircraft performance a satisfying pleasure to experience.  I've now made a second flight, this one 30 minutes, and can only say that I am even more excited about the prospects of this aircraft enjoying an enthusiastic market acceptance.

 

Take a look at the first- and second-flight videos on this site or on our YouTube channel, including the cockpit panel video of the second flight take-off and landing. You could be having all that fun too!

 

We will continue with our flight testing to the extent possible in an open-cockpit aircraft in Wisconsin in mid-winter, and plan to be at Sun 'N' Fun in Florida in April. Meanwhile, you are always welcome to come for a visit at any time, or contact my by phone or email.

 

Ed Leineweber

(608) 604-6515

 

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