This coming Corvair College in Barnwell, SC on November 5-7, 2021 will be my 48th College. We have now been holding these events for 20 years, all over America. This is an unmatched record of hands on training and education, all in a friendly, fun setting. The Colleges have been an integral part of my work with Corvairs, and #48 will be an excellent opportunity for you to be part of a real grassroots aviation event that will directly advance your personal goals in homebuilding.
College #48 will be at the Barnwell SC airport, November 5-7th. Advanced registration is required to attend. I welcome all homebuilders, but it is a private event. We are limited to just under 100 people, the food is catered in advance, and we do have written safety briefings in advance. These three factors preclude having people ‘walk in’ or stop by. If you would like to go, register early and make plans.
Barnwell has been the setting for 9 previous Corvair Colleges. These have been our ‘Flagship’ events, The EAA has even sent a professional film crew to capture the accomplishment and spirit of Barnwell Colleges. All of these were made possible by the leadership of one great man, P.F. Beck. He was the embodiment of being an aviator, and his generosity of spirit, enthusiasm, and southern hospitality. He passed in 2019, and we did not have a Barnwell event in 2019 to allow his friends and family to address our loss quietly. We are going back for College #48 in November because it was the expressed wish of P.F. that the Colleges continue after he departed. The evening dinner program on Saturday will be a remembrance and expression of gratitude for the fortune of knowing P.F.
Builders who did not meet him will hear in person from the people who’s lives he moved.
If you have not previously registered for nor attended a Corvair College, take the time to read some of the stories of them on my blog. The “Corvair College Reference Page” is a good place to start, or watching the EAA’s film of Barnwell. This will give a better idea of the unique nature of Colleges. If you still have questions, please call me, 904-806-8143.
Barnwell Colleges are set at a large, but quiet county airport. We have camping directly adjacent to the hangar, and more than half to the builders take advantage of it. There is plenty of space for campers and RV’s but we don’t have hook ups. The airport is easy to fly into, and we have a number of Corvair powered planes planning on attending, including the TwinJAG, a one of a kind homebuilt who’s engines were assembled and run at a previous Barnwell College. The event is focused on learning in a friendly environment. People attending will range from people just getting into Corvairs making a recon-intel run, to Pilots who attended all previous Barnwell colleges, returning in their Corvair powered aircraft. Every level is welcome, the event it designed to meet the goals and desires of Corvair builders at every stage of the experience.
Builders can bring their own engines and assemble and test run them at the College. We have run well over 100 engines at the previous Barnwell colleges, and these have been milestone achievements in the journey of these builders, but the College is focused on learning, not ‘getting it done’. Test runs are done to confirm the builder understands and is the master of his power plant, they are not done just because the engine is assembled. Builders with the goal of learning find progress flows from this. I’m at Colleges to teach, if you are attending to learn, it will be a great match.
The College is “Free” in the very real sense that everything you can learn and do is provided by myself, our local hosts, and a cadre of experienced builders returning to Barnwell. However, the registration has a $110 per person fee, which entirely goes to our local hosts to address their costs of catering the event. P.F’s crew do tireless work to make Colleges happen, all of them are volunteers, they are giving their time, and no respectful person would fail to cover their share of the direct costs of the College. Registering and paying the fee accomplishes this. Corvair pilots who fly their Corvair-powered planes to the college get 50% off the registration fee.
The colleges are a lot of fun, and you will have a chance to meet and get to know many of the characters in the world of Corvairs, on your way to becoming one of them. The event is an intense immersion into real, traditional homebuilding, the very opposite end of the spectrum from the ‘Consumer airshow’ mentality. This is all done with the awareness that we are still in a serious safety setting with turning props and the ever present awareness that we are all guests of our local hosts, in ‘the Hangar P.F. built’, and registering for the College comes with the understanding that we are guests and recipients of great generosity, and our actions will reflect our gratitude.
I look forward to seeing friends, both old and new there. We’ll see you on the Flightline.