I was searching old threads and noticed Randy's old post selling his Kitfox. I am the guy that bought it and happy to report it hit the air the end of Sept 2016. About 2.5 years after I got it. I did a complete rebuild and added a few options. First a 912UL with an in flight adjustable IVO. Then speedster tail mod and a wide body mod. Also bubble doors so lots of room in the cabin. I am loving the way it flys and the performance. I put 60hrs on her the first 60 days. Still flying her lots whenever the weather permits.
I bought a few of them. Had one on a 582 and even use one on my 912. Fairly accurate but not perfect. Can miss count once in a while but only for seconds. I did have one go bad but I also had a tiny tack go bad. For the money buy two and then you have a spare is one goes bad or put one on each mag and you will have a double check.
The little Buzzard is a plane similar to the Karatoo, or the Cubby II. It is a very nicely built Canadian Ultralight. The Wing is all Aluminum with a D tube style construction. The Fuse and tail feathers are chrome moly and the fabric is painted with latex and then clear coated from the factory. It is a great flying plane, Docile, honest, and forgiving. I put strut fairings on mine and cruise at about 75 to 80mph at 5900 RPM on the 582 Greyhead. Stall is in the area of 30 to 35mph. The wing uses a Clark Y airfoil and is pretty cublike. It is a side by side seating with a 40inch width. It was marketed as a Ultralight trainer. Empty weight on mine is 650lbs. With two 10 gal tanks I can cruise about 3 hrs with reserve. The 912 would do much better. I believe the plane was built as a cottage industry with many different craftsmen building different components in their own facility. (that is not a known fact just what I have been able to gleam out of conversations with different people) I have never had a reply from calling the number on the website. Could have been a great tough little plane but I think there was more smoke and mirrors than actual sales. Still I really like mine and fly it weekly. And no the wings do not fold, which is why I am rebuilding a KitFox IV. It does land nicely. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=640HKG-y49g
Hi I have been on holidays and away from the site for a bit so sorry to be late with some info. That video is Ralph in his Avid. He is running a 582 with a 3-1 gearbox and a three blade Warp Drive prop. He gets some great performance from the plane but he flys at sea level so it may make a difference if you are not at sea level. I flew my speed wing at 3500 msl and did not see that kind of performance. I was lucky to see 95mph. I believe that my plane suffered from the higher altitude. I was running a 582 with a 2.58-1 B-box and a two blade IVO. My climb was good showing 800 to 900 fpm solo. I never took a passenger with me because I did not trust the plane. My landing and takeoff was in the 55 to 60mph range and the glide was that of a rock. It dropped at 1000fpm and I had a motor out at 300 feet so I had 20secs to arrive at the seen of the accident. I repaired the plane and sold it shortly after. The guy that bought it was a former air force jet pilot and just loved it. My thought is that with the extensions the plane would not have to work as hard to stay aloft and I do not think the speed would suffer. (my thoughts not fact) This is a video of me landing and take off. I land at 55 to 60mph and it is done flying.
The plane was also a handful to takeoff and before I bought it, the previous owner ground looped. My test pilot, a man with thousands of hours in kitfoxs and some in Avids ground looped before the first flight. I never ground looped it but did have it get away from me on a couple of landings. I went back to my Buzzard and love it but I am working on rebuilding a Model IV KitFox. I really enjoyed the way the Avid was a two finger flyer and hope to get back to that in the KitFox.
Good Luck but I think the extensions would be a good addition.
I think I started with about 8 inch. I did one break at 1 inch and the next break at 3.5 inches. I did not think the thin material would work but when you wrap the one inch tube it forms nice. I then rivited the bottom of the 3.5 inch piece to the one inch break which hides the rivet inside the fairing. Did this at the rear of the fairing. I then filled the fairings with spray foam to make the fairing stay in place and add some structure. I sprayed the foam into each end and also at the jury strut opening. I may end up doing it again and maybe use .024 Aluminum for the material. I am super happy with the results. A person could tweak the planes till your blue in the face but I think I am done tweaking this bird as I have a KitFox IV to re-Cover. Now that is another major project. I keep adding things to the want list and so far I have put the speed tail mod on and the wide body mod. Looking at a good cargo area mod but that is not as important as I am normally a short hop pilot. So many planes so lttlle time.
I put strut fairings on my Buzzard and picked up about 10 mph. My climb is also much better and flying with two on board is much easier. Strut fairings are the best thing I have done to this plane ever. I built mine out of thin aluminum flashing from home depot. (used the type that was brown on one side and white on the other) I used an eight foot break and put two folds into the material. then wrapping it around the tube I riveted it at the rear and attached to the struts with spray foam. I used the thin aluminum to test the effectiveness of the mod. It is certainly worth doing.
There are a number of Merlins in my area as Blue yonder is a local company. The Merlin is a capable airplane and I have seen the very light ones fly on a 503. Many fly on 582's with good performance. Take off with the 582 and a 3 to 1 gearbox is 600 to 800 ft with a climb of about 1000 fpm. Cruise is at about 65 to 75mph. Most fly with a 912 and this turns the plane into a nice solid performer with a cruise closer to 85 to 90mph. Wayne (the manufacturer) has said his new tricycle gear Merlin shows cruise of 100 to 105. The Merlin will be a great plane to fly. Enjoy.
Just a thought, do you know if the motor has a hydro dampner. The old grey heads did not originally have them. When I finally got a grey head with the dampner I could not believe the difference. There are reports of grey heads blowing up because the the lack of a dampner. My new grey head sure runs nice.
AVid is gone, Buzzard is in the air 15hrs now and you know what is waiting in the shop. The guy that bought the Avid is super happy with it. "Woo Hoo is this a fun airplane" his words. If you are off this week I can fly to Innisfail or North 40 and look at your plane for further insperation.