William Wynne

"The Corvair Authority"
5000-18 HWY 17 #247
Orange Park, FL 32003

What's New

January 15, 2006 Hangar Update

We will have the new Engine Disassembly DVDs and videotapes available for shipment Tuesday. The introductory price is $25. This includes Priority Mail shipping anywhere in the U.S. If you'd like to order one, you can mail a check payable to William Wynne, P.O. Box 290802, Port Orange, FL 32129-0802, or order through PayPal at our Online Catalog. Our initial order was 50 of each, so there will be plenty on hand. I'm curious to see the percentage of orders between DVDs vs. videos. Merrill "Skymanta" Isaacson is already shooting videotape for the next two projects. We'll keep you posted. The first one is a revised Introductory Video with 45 minutes of air-to-air and from the cockpit footage. The second is a detailed guide to 601 firewall forward installations. With Merrill as a full time member of the Hangar Gang, 2006 will be a good year for new visual material. While video and DVD are good additions to the written word and the Web site for information, they're really the best way to go for entertainment. I told Merrill that what I hope to capture in at least some of our filming was the fun, real aspect of flying. The Disassembly Video is certainly first class, but there are times when your building enthusiasm would be best served by sitting in front of your TV and watching an hour's worth of pure flying done by us and your fellow builders who have finished their projects. No one ever learned to ski by watching a Warren Miller film, but certainly countless people were motivated to go ski after seeing his films. They've always provided spellbinding visual stimulation, even if you were watching it on the Fourth of July. Just as skiing had Warren Miller, and surfing and motorcycling had Bruce Brown's Endless Summer and On Any Sunday, I'm encouraging Merrill to provide us with a Corvair powered documentary all of our own.

Above is a photo of the latest production run of Oil Pans. Among other fine improvements, these pans feature CNC drainplug bosses. These Pans will ship on Tuesday. This is every backordered Pan, plus a half dozen for stock. The Installation Kits for these Pans are being shipped with brand new Sealed Power oil pickup screens. We will still need your old oil pickup screen as a core, but we will now just be using the first three inches of tubing from it. New screens allow us to ensure perfect cleanliness inside without a lot of labor. Dave and Merrill worked on Distributor housings this week. All that remains to be done to them is to set up their points plates and run them individually through the distributor machine. Again, every backordered distributor will be shipped shortly. Adding Merrill to the gang has added to the organization and productivity, and things are on a roll like they should be. Please note that Grace Ellen is taking a vacation to South America from Jan. 16 to Feb. 1. It's a well deserved vacation she's planned for several years with her mother. Since Grace does everything on our Web site, we won't have any updates for this period, and e-mail will not set a record for fast response times. However, PayPal orders still will be covered, and anyone who wants quick information can certainly call us at the hangar, (386) 478-0396.

Event for West Coast Builders

West Coast 601 builders have an event coming up Saturday, Jan. 21. Michael is the Heintz brother who runs Zenith's West Coast facility, newly opened in Santa Rosa, Calif. He has an upcoming Rudder Workshop which he's combining with an Open House. I spoke with Michael on the phone last week, and he said he wanted to encourage Corvair builders in the area to attend whether they're current Zenith builders or not. There will be several Corvair builders on hand. Notably, 601 builder John Kearney of Nevada will be bringing his running Corvair engine, and Corvair/601 builder Woody Harris of California has been supplied with a number of show and tell pieces and Conversion Manuals from us. Woody has spent a lifetime in the motorsports industry, and recently spent four intense 15 hour days with us in the hangar. He's well versed in the mechanics of the engine, and up to date on all of our R&D in the hangar. We have a number of strong 601 builders under way on the West Coast, and it will not be long till we have a handful of flying examples homebased in the Golden State.

January 9, 2006

New Year's Update

Here's the first update from the Corvair Hangar in the New Year. It promises to be a very busy and productive year, and we're looking forward to helping everyone achieve their goals in building and flying this year. January 12 is the first day of the LSA Expo at Sebring, Fla. A number of people have called to ask whether we'll be there. We had a booth at the first Expo 15 months ago. This year, we're planning on flying over for a quick visit and spending some time with the Heintz family at the AMD booth. AMD is the certified manufacturing branch of the Heintz family, and it produces the Alarus and the S-LSA version of the 601. AMD is run by Matthieu Heintz. We're planning on flying over Friday or Saturday, whichever day offers better weather.

I was outside the hangar and was surprised to see an aviation legend on the ramp. Standing next to Dave in the photo above is Clint McHenry. For those of you new to aviation, Clint McHenry is arguably the finest precision aerobatic pilot of all time. If you ask anyone involved in competition aerobatics, they'll certainly agree that Clint is the finest gentleman which that field of aviation has ever known. Incredible flying ability frequently and perhaps justifiably is accompanied by very healthy extroverted egos. In a field defined by these people, Clint McHenry emerged as the World Champion of Aerobatics. His style has always been pure modesty, and letting the flying speak for itself. He has been a teacher and mentor to countless aerobatic pilots of all capabilities. Long since retired from competitive aerobatics, he still finds time to critique practices and share his wisdom. Clint lives in this area of Florida, and his visit to the airport centered around LSA aircraft. He was visiting our neighbors Jason and Sharon, who have one of the new Legend Cubs. Clint and his granddaughter came out to fly it. We gave him a tour of our planes in the shop, and he's planning on returning for a flight in the 601. It was a nice surprise, and Dave was very pleased to meet him for the first time.

Three racks of cranks just returned from the nitrider, above. When they come back, they have a light coating of dusty ash on the surface. After some experimentation, we now deep nitride the crank first, having it spend twice as long in process. Upon its return to us, it is then ground by our crankshaft guy. Running the process in this order eliminates the possibility that the crank distort during the nitriding. It saves the step of having to polish the crank upon its return from the nitrider. The deep nitriding option still leaves most of the effect, because the grinding only removes 5/1000" off each side. We're now cycling nine cranks a week through the process.

As many of you know, the gentleman above is Merrill Isaacson. If you've seen any of our videos, you've enjoyed Merrill's handiwork. His nickname is "Skymanta." He shot, edited and produced all our videos. Merrill is a pilot and builder who built one of our first customer built engines many years ago. The display engine we ran at Sun 'N Fun in the early years is his. For the new year, Merrill has chosen to join the Hangar Gang full time. He'll be covering a variety of shop tasks, but most importantly, he's vowed to answer the telephone and cover the incoming questions and messages. Merrill, as an experienced builder, can answer most of the basic questions off the bat. Of course, Gus and I can answer the tough ones. Having Merrill to cover this means the telephone will be answered even when I'm welding and Gus is out flying. Keep in mind that we only have one phone line so the phone still goes to voicemail if someone's on the line. The greatest benefit of having Merrill here full time will certainly be having far more opportunity to shoot videotape than we previously dreamed possible. His first week in the shop, we shot a brand new engine disassembly video. Oscar Zuniga of Texas had prodded us for this countless times. When Merrill worked in Orlando, our schedules never crossed to let us get it together. With him here, it's done the first week. With a nod to changing technologies, the Disassembly Video will be available both as a VHS tape and a DVD. We're expecting the finished products in our hands in a few days. I previewed the master, and it's very good. It has some flying scenes of the 601 in it also. When you call in, take the opportunity to introduce yourself to Merrill; he's very friendly and is getting to know our customers very quickly.

2006 will be a year of production. In previous years, a lot of our schedule was devoted to air shows, Night Schools, and Colleges. I can honestly say that no experimental business can match our track record of promotional and especially educational and service work in the field. Certainly no one can match our precedent of doing it for free. Every year has to strike a balance between meeting new customers, educational work and teaching, and manufacturing parts and components. While we intend to keep up an intense schedule of dynomometer and flight testing, 2006 will see a definite shift toward production of parts. The expansion of business in 2005 and our educational and promotional commitments meant that we consistently were backordered on a number of our most popular items last year. Expanding the Hangar Gang and cutting back slightly on our field promotional work will shortly put us in the position of having almost every part in the catalog on the shelf in quantity ready for immediate shipment. We have a great loyalty toward the customers who have chosen the Corvair. It is our obligation to fill their orders in a more timely manner as a priority over further field work. In the photo above, another Oil Pan partially welded in its 25 pound welding jig. The CNC rails are now produced with greater clearance around the bolt holes. This eliminates any hand fitting. To ensure that the pan stays accurately in the jig during welding, the 19 allen screws holding it down were tapered like tiny lug nuts on the lathe by Dave The Bear. Thus, the 1/4-20 screw will hold the 5/16" hole dead centered on its correct location during welding. Today in the shop, Merrill covered about 30 incoming phone calls, which allowed me to stay at the welding table uninterrupted most of the day. Telephone service and productivity were both handled with greater efficiency.

Five pre-preg Corvair Nosebowls on their way out the door, above. The patience of builders waiting for parts is frequently rewarded with an improved product. A perfect example of this are the pre-preg Nosebowls. The originals were wet layup, vacuum bagged fiberglass and epoxy. If you're into composites, you understand that the term advanced really only applies to pre-preg materials. As good as the original Nosebowls were, pre-preg parts are far better. All of our composite parts for 2006 will be made out of pre-preg. This is not surplus, out of date industry leftovers; it is brand new material. To make it affordable within bounds of reason, we had to purchase a large, expensive roll. Being pre-preg, it must be shipped in dry ice and stored in a freezer. The reward is far lighter, stiffer parts made with much better production because the huge increase in material cost is offset by a very large reduction in labor to build the part. For the builders who patiently waited, these Nosebowls are being shipped at the cost of the original wet layup models. 2006 brings a required price increase for the improved part.

Also note that these Nosebowls do not have the air scoop. This is identical in shape to the carbon Nosebowl we've been flying on the 601 for several months. These Nosebowls are designed to work with the integral air filter/carb heat box that we've now flight proven. We'll have an update on this with a lot of photos shortly. For now, suffice to say it's far cleaner and easier to build than the original 601 system.

At the hangar, we're all looking forward to a fun, productive year. Chances are, your aviation plans are made of the same stuff. The year will certainly hold as many or more high points in Corvair powered aviation as 2005 did. Make up your mind right now that this will be your year, and you'll have your seat at the table in the world of Corvair powered flight.

Now At The Hangar

June 2011 At The Hangar

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Christmas 2007 At The Hangar

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December 2006 At The Hangar Part 1

December 2006 At The Hangar Part 2

December 2006 At The Hangar Part 3

December 2006 At The Hangar Part 4

November 2006 At The Hangar

October 2006 At The Hangar

September 2006 At The Hangar

August 2006 At The Hangar

At The Hangar In July 2006

June 2006 At The Hangar

At The Hangar In May 2006

At The Hangar In April 2006

At The Hangar In March 2006

At The Hangar In February 2006

At The Hangar In December 2005

At The Hangar In November 2005

At The Hangar In October 2005

At The Hangar In September 2005

At The Hangar In July 2005

OSH, Illinois and SAA June 13, 2005

At The Hangar June 13, 2005 Part II

At The Hangar In May 2005

At The Hangar In April 2005

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