Back from Corvair College #31,Barnwell, S.C.


We have returned from CC#31 in Barnwell, our 5th event with local hosts P.F. Beck and his outstanding team of volunteers. It was a great event, with many planes flown in, many engine built and run, much learned and many friendships, both new and old, strengthened.


At dinner on Saturday night the head count was 107 people, the largest number of builders in several years. There were a number of builders and pilots like Mark Langford, Joe Horton and Dale Williams who were on hand Friday and Saturday, but flew out before the dinner. All totaled we had about 115 individuals at the College.


Over the next several days Grace and I are unpacking and getting parts in the mail to builders. Our main CNC machine shop finished a large batch of Gold Prop hubs and Gold oil systems at 5 pm Thursday, a week later than scheduled. We departed later that night without a chance to mail them. Today they are going out by USPS priority mail.


Once we get these things covered, I will write up several photo essays from the college over the next week. For now, a single photo to start with, and a reminder that the sign up for College #32, just 108 days away, is already open: Corvair College #32, Texas Feb, 2015, Sign up open





Above, Bob Lester’s Corvair powered Pietenpol sits on the ramp at Barnwell at sunset on Saturday night. Bob had flown it up from Florida that morning. It is the second college the plane has been to, Bob also flew into CC#25 in Leesburg. Bob has been flying for 30 years or so, and has owned certified aircraft from a Taylorcraft to a Stinson 108 and experimentals from KRs to his Pietenpol.


The son of a WWII combat pilot and a native of South Florida, today Bob lives in North Central Florida at a quiet rural airport. His batchlor’s paradise is a large hangar housing his apartment, his tools, motorcycle, the Stinson and the Pietenpol. Read more at these links: Pietenpol Power: 100 hp Corvair vs 65 hp Lycoming and New die spring landing gear on a Pietenpol, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

2 Replies to “Back from Corvair College #31,Barnwell, S.C.”

  1. I had an a great time at my first CC.. I am already signed up for the next one and tracking down a core engine.

  2. William,

    I want to take this opportunity to say how much fun I had at CC #31, and #28 last year, and thank you for the hard work that goes into teaching hard heads like myself the art of aircraft engine building and maintenance. You run around the hanger being pulled in 20 different directions at the same time but never does, “Damn, what does Normandin want THIS time?!” show on your face when I pester you. What I saw was a teacher teaching, and having fun doing it. I was hoping to finish at this College but, like so many before me, I underestimated the volume of work. I’d rather it take longer than rush the process.

    Thank you again for the help, for the instruction and the opportunity to build a first class flight engine. If I don’t get it right the first time I have only myself to blame.

    Looking forward to CC #33 to finish up and I am going to do everything in my power to fly in to Barnwell next year, if PF and Co. will have us of course. 😉



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