CC#34 and the Zenith Open house -2015 -quick notes


I have not had a chance to upload most of the photos and notes from these two events, but I just wanted to share some quick notes.


'The Corvair College

The Corvair College “classroom”. This year we rented a very large professional tent, and put it on the concrete apron right next to the Zenith building. The proximity was great for air, electric and tools like drill presses. It turned out to be much cooler than working in a hangar, and surprisingly, the white inside of the tent offered much brighter reflection of halogen lights for work that went on late into the nights. Although it was tight for 60 builders, everyone kept a positive attitude and a lot of new friends were made.


Corvair College #34 was the third consecutive College we have held at The Zenith Factory. (The others were #26 and #30) Like the others, this one was a strong success, with 60 builders in attendance. Although we were a little tight on space, a lot of high quality work was done and a number of engines went all the way through a test run on the stand.


We had a great crew of early birds who came and unpacked the trailer and set up all the work benches, tooling, run stand, lighting and wash tank. We were actually ready to go a day early, and a dozen of us headed out to the 54 diner to kick back. By noon the following day, we had a full house, and the building was in high blower.


Special assistance came ‘Air-Male’ from Florida, When Dan Weseman flew up from Florida to offer technical support for the full college. To give you a good idea of the progress, Dan said he supervised the installation of eleven of his 5th bearings on site. Think that over, that is 20% of the builders on hand closing their case and installing his bearing during the college. This is the progress possible with a cleverly designed, builder installable mass produced, affordable 5th bearing.


As always, the modest fee for the college was directly applied to the catering of all the meals by the Steinman’s catering. The weather was perfect, and we ate outdoors in the open air three meals a day. Rob Riggen of Flying High Coffee provided the Java, and we had large coolers with everything else for builders to drink. I have many good digital photos of this we will post at a later time.


One way you can always see that Colleges are successful is that builders rarely leave when the college ‘ends’. We always have many people right up to the end, and are never short of hands to break down the workbenches and pack the trailer and truck, even though builders drove in really long distances like Stu Snow and Larry Nelson who came from Arizona and Vance Lucas who drove in from Calgary…for the second year in a row.


'Zenith Aircraft Open Hangar Day 2015'


On the net several years ago, a person who disliked me called me a “Long haired, foul-mouthed, nationalistic, grease monkey from Florida.” My response was to write back and say, “Thanks, I accept the compliments, with a small correction, I was actually born in Pennsylvania.”  Just to show people that I am not a pure troglodyte, and I am capable of change, I present the above new photo of me at The Zenith open house, as a Short haired, foul-mouthed, nationalistic, grease monkey from Florida. The actual reason for the style change was my Mother asking me to do something nice for my Father to raise his spirits. It worked.


After the college, every year, we encourage builders to stay two more days for the Zenith open house. I have not missed one of these in many years, we have been there every year since 2009, get a look at this old zenith link:



Dr. Steve Minart, of Iowa, stands beside his 2700cc Corvair powered 601XL(B), He has flown in to four of the Zenith open houses. His home was one of the stops on our 2005 Midwest night school tour: A decade later: Midwest tour, winter 2005


The open house is a great event, if you are a homebuilder it offers a great chance to meet many industry suppliers in a setting far more relaxed than Oshkosh. Because Zenith is one of the biggest and oldest kit companies, they have the power to bring in all kinds of engine, avionics, and systems suppliers to their open house, in addition to running in depth tours of their operation and having Kitplanes sponsor their STOL competition. For a look at the event, check out this you tube video:


(You can get a very good look at the College tent in the aerial views. Note to Paul Salter who loaned me his truck for the trip, Don’t let Dan kid you, the truck still exists, it is parked next to the tent in the film.)




To get a better look at Zenith, check out this link:


For a look at College #30:

Corvair College #30 Good Times


Corvair College #30 Running Engines


For a look at our long standing relationship with Zenith aircraft and the Heintz family:

12 years of Zenith’s powered by FlyCorvair Conversions.



About William Wynne
I have been continuously building, testing and flying Corvair engines since 1989. Information, parts and components that we developed and tested are now flying on several hundred Corvair powered aircraft. I earned a Bachelor of Science in Professional Aeronautics and an A&P license from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and have a proven 20 year track record of effectively teaching homebuilders how to create and fly their own Corvair powered planes. Much of this is chronicled at and in more than 50 magazine articles.

5 Responses to CC#34 and the Zenith Open house -2015 -quick notes

  1. Jimmy Mathis says:

    Hi William: I really enjoyed my first Corvair College. Please check your paypal account for the camshaft kit.

  2. Joe Goldman says:

    Guys I sure wish I was there. It would I have loved hearing William do Frank Sinatra. His picture in the article singing in to the mike is not like actually hearing him in person.

    • Joe, very funny. Right now I am in NJ, about 10 miles from Hoboken, Sinatra’s home town. Perhaps we should have a late night screening of “From Here to Eternity” at the next College. It would be a lot better than me singing I did it my way. -ww.

  3. Larry Nelson says:

    I really enjoyed my first college. To bad about the drone. William when will you be back in the shop?

  4. Larry,

    I got back late today, I spent 40 hours detouring in South Carolina due to closed roads and flooding Spent a day trapped on I-95, then took a 325 mile detour today. Everything I saw in the state was underwater.

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