Copyright © 2011 by Marc R. Beauvais
· All Rights reserved ·
This is my personal WEB page talking about my new "pet project". Building an aircraft, nothing less. My relatives and my friends know me too well for not going after the easy ones. But admit it; who in this world haven't dreamed of flying? Some get scarred just at the idea of seeing themselves on board of one but it doesn't mean that they are not fascinated by the idea.
To me, the true initiator of this mankind dream is Leonardo Da Vinci. The guy was a painter, a philosopher, an inventor and an ENGINEER !!! The very first one actually. The Wright Brother's did pioneer the first "sustained flight" but still. Leonardo is MY MAN !!!
I have no intension of following Leonardo's footsteps (I'm no match with him) but flying is a dream of a life time for me. With that in mind, I'm in a point in my life that I'd like to do something a little bit out of the ordinary. I've done a lot of things in my life but I had to think of something that will seriously challenge me. I think I got it. There's apparently a 200+ pages building manual that comes with the kit I intend to build so this sounds like challenging enough.???...
I have never build an aircraft before. So what? I didn't build a house before building the first one? Fifteen years later, I still own it. And it is quite cozy and comfortable, thanks. So let's go for it. Oh, by the way, I initially intended to build an kit helicopter but what made me step down from that idea is mostly motivated by the extraordinary high building/operating costs associated to helicopter flying. It's certainly fun to fly (even more challenging), but spending $25k just for the Private Pilot License (PPL for short) didn't made sense to me. Gee !!!, That's something like half the cost of most decent airplane kits !!!???!!! Besides, the A600 Talon (from Rotorway International) proposes a 200 miles (at best flying conditions) range while an airplane that cost not more than the A600 could fly up to 1,600 miles. Do the MATHS.
But which kit model to choose? Just punch "aircraft kits" on Google and see what happens. Better gob few "Wakeup" pills because you won't go to bed for a while. I've lost the count but after short listing those that I had a real interest for, I had to compare something like 15 different aircraft models from about 8 manufacturers. And trust me, there are good ones out there. Very tough decision to make. The prices vary between $30k up to $200k. Countless features and performance charts to look at. I've told you. You won't go to bed anytime soon.
But after a while, I couldn't keep my eyes off that beautiful, all metal, WWII warbird replica. Titan Aircraft is a well established American company providing proven and reliable aircraft kits since many years now. About 6 or 7 years ago, the owner of the company decided to put ahead his project of building the first prototype of the "T-51 Mustang". Soon after, it was an immediate success. Titan have sold many kits mostly in the USA but quite a lot in New Zealand and in the UK as well. Recently, a guy named Ross Hesom, out of Manitoba, Canada, jumped in and became the Canadian retailer of Titan. He has build his own and flies it.
What I like the most from this aircraft kit is that it's ALL METAL. The airframe is all Chrome Moly square tubing. The skins are aircraft grade aluminum. Only few parts of the surface controls (fairing and wing tips for the fuselage, wings, rudder, etc.) are made of fiberglass. Well, that helps alot dropping down building time and cost. Not a deal breaker for me. The kit is sold "without" the engine, instruments and propeller. The reason for this is quite simple; this is "Amateur build" world and you have all the latitude in the world to make up your airplane THE WAY YOU LIKE IT !!! So you can put pretty much everything you like on it as long as it is compliant with the "Airworthyness" rules and regulations. However, this is an aircraft, not a recreational boat!! So forget about DVD players, sound systems and all that kind of crap. This kit is a SERIOUS piece of kit. And hold on tight because the T-51 is capable of +6G / -4G. Better have a strong stomach I you want to have a spin in this thing. (I'll show you where the "bag" is if you ever get into mine...)
The other big upside for this kit comes from the fact that there's a very active builders community. Just pay a visit to the Titanmustang Yahoo Group and see for yourself. Despite it's short history, the T-51 builders group is a good source where to get tips, tricks and advices. This is valid for any kit builder anyway.
So for those who wish to see the evolution of my project or to get inspiration or ideas from what I'm publishing here, be my guest. And one day, in a couple of years from now, you should see a new bird doing a "fly by" in your neighborhood. (... gee, there are days like that where I'm in a poetic mood...)
Please enjoy. !!!
Visit Titan Aircraft
To know more about the T-51, take a look at the Titan's WEB site.
Titan Aircraft in Canada
This is the WEB site of the Canadian Titan dealer. While you're there, say "hello" to Ross for me....
Titan Mustang Group
To access T-51 Mustang Builders Group
New YouTube Interface and movies!
April 10, 2011 - I've modified extensively the Youtube viewer and playlist.
See that here...
November 12, 2010 - Returning from a visit to Titan Aircraft factory.
This is free advertising for them
I've paid my licence.....
I think this is cute.
Thanks to www.eclipsed.com
The usual legal disclaimer applies, that this website is for information only regarding "MY" project. So beware that whatever information you collect and retain for your own benefit, you're doing so at your own risk. Don't ever come back to me complaining about any mistakes or mishaps that may happen to you by following any idea, tips or whatever found of my webpage; it will be your own doing.