Welcome to the FlyCorvair Blog. With the help of a computer savvy friend, we have set this up to have a single point where people who are building and flying Corvairs can come and get fresh, factual information and motivation for their own projects. Most blogs are something of a monologue. This one will be different. For many years we ran a Daily Question and Answer section on our Web site. Hundreds of builders wrote in and had their question answered in this forum where other builders could also benefit. These posts are still archived on our Web site; they are a good resource, but we are taking a big step forward with this blog site.
Today we have access to vastly improved software and the answers can easily be enhanced with pictures and embedded video. I am pretty good at sharing information in the form of writing, but we all understand that in homebuilding, a picture is worth a thousand words, and a short video clip can often be illuminating and very motivational. This site also has other options that builders can choose, like being notified by e-mail when there is a fresh post here by clicking on RSS at right to subscribe for free. The program that we are using here is one of the most popular formats because it has very user friendly features like categorized archives right on the side of the main page. We are just getting to know the system, and we will make every effort to explain its features as we utilize them.
In 20 years of writing about aviation, all of my best efforts were sparked by a conversation or an experience shared by another aviator. Anyone reading this, no matter what your experience level, can be the builder who determines the subject of the next column. Just send your thoughts to WilliamTCA@aol.com, my regular e-mail address, or leave a reply in the comment box at the bottom of each post. Over the years, a number of Corvair aircraft discussion groups have sprung up on the Web, and almost all of them have faded away. One even had a name very close to our business, but had nothing to do with us. Another was nicknamed “The island of misfit toys” because it was populated by a lot of characters who had been tossed off other discussion groups. For many years, I was a major contributor to Mark Langford’s group, but we have mutually come to the friendly conclusion that I would be better off with my own place to converse with builders who choose to follow my testing and work. Mark wants to keep his group independent, and he believes that people should have a place to say nearly anything they wish. Inevitably I always try to steer the conversation back to what has been flight tested, what is known, what works for builders. These are divergent concepts, thus Grace and I have brought this site into operation. Although I will still write a number of articles for print publications, this blog and our main FlyCorvair.com Web site will be the only places where you will find me on the Web.
Just like you, I have an aircraft project out in the shop. Neither of us are going to get to the flightline if we spend all of our time at the computer. People are an equal element of flying to me. I love planes, but the human component drives me just as much. I work every year to strike a balance so that we make friends and finish planes. One without the other isn’t success for me. I have found that most builders feel the same way. I turned 49 last week. Statistically speaking, I have 26 more flying seasons left. Sounds like a lot, but I know right know that it isn’t enough. I can’t get more time, but I can spend what I will have wisely. It took me a long time to learn that I don’t have to like everything and everyone in aviation. I am not obligated to appreciate corporate jets nor $169K light sports. It took a while to understand that “the brotherhood of aviation” is a beautiful concept, just like Santa. Here is my reality: Aviation is a giant place, with plenty of room. All I am looking for is a place to build and flight test our ideas, share them with friends and the time to go do some flying. I didn’t get into this to make everyone into an alternative engine convert, nor is it my job to tolerate every mystery e-mail name with an opinion and a keyboard. Staying focused on spending my time wisely brings me to the decision to put our effort into the people who will read this site.
Here, by choice, we can have a positive discussion between real people who have come to learn and share information on our favorite engine. It isn’t going to be for everyone, but I do have a very long track record of working with a great variety of people. These builders have possessed the common goals of succeeding in aviation and sharing this with other builders. Sounds pretty basic, and for most builders it’s just common sense, but it is worth noting that there is 25 times as much information on aircraft building on the Web today as there was 10 years ago, yet the completion rate of aircraft has not changed, and the accident rate may be slightly higher. Quantity of information isn’t a substitute for quality, and is often just more hay when you need to find a needle in the stack. Together we can make this the location for flight proven information and friendly motivation. Welcome aboard.