Above, Randy Bush of TN stands beside his 3,000cc Cleanex at Oshkosh 2017. It was parked in the Corvair power row directly behind my booth in the North Aircraft display area.
This is Randy's second Corvair powered plane. His Pietenpol now has 725 hours on it, and his Cleanex, new this year, has about 60. It is a reflection of the long proven installation that the plane had no issues in phase one testing, and is a fully reliable aircraft for cross country work with 60 hours on the Hobbs. The term 'alternative engine' doesn't historically have that kind of reputation, because too many people promoting them were selling untested imported junk and half baked ideas without merit.
Conversely, I was educated at the finest aeronautical university, and my goal has always been to emulate the success of Lycoming and Continental in a more affordable and accessible format. In the 28 years since starting this I have seen countless companies offering "New and exciting " come and go, but I have never wavered from my faith in "old and proven" . If it is your desire to understand and master a power plant that will reliably take your plane to destinations far and wide over hundreds of hours, we have an engine program for you.
Above, Ken Pavlov, of CT, flew to Oshkosh 2017 in his 3.3L Corvair powered Zenith 601XL. The plane now has 578 hours on it. The first 502 were on his 2,700 cc Corvair.
When he mentioned opting to add 600cc in displacement by reassembling the engine around a Weseman 3.3L billet Crankshaft, many people asked "What was wrong with the 2,700?" Answer: Nothing. The engine served him for 502 hours, and no one flies that kind of time on a home built in 3 years if the installation is problematic.
In reality, Ken used and enjoyed the engine he started with his plane project in 2007. However, a decade later, his career and life have advanced to the point that he can afford any engine he desires. His choice to upgrade to a maximum output, finest quality, state of the art engine is just an extension of his satisfaction with the Corvair, reflects the option all Corvair builders have to increase power and take advantage of advancements without 'starting over' and is a direct reflection of Ken's good judgement to invest in the aircraft he flies his family in.
It is ironic that a builder who puts a $5k paint job on his plane, an expenditure which does nothing to increase the aircrafts performance nor reliability is greeted with near universal praise, but a guy who opts for a dramatic performance increase via new, American made parts, must explain to many of the same people the logic of his choice.
Although Ken was not born in America, this country has been the recipient of his complete allegiance since he was child. His choice to spend his dollars on American engineering and manufacturing, and thus directly support employment in this country is a reflection of his gratitude for becoming a citizen of this country, a great fortune all to frequently taken for granted by those born here.