Barnwell Corvair College #48 Cancelled

Barnwell Corvair College #48 Cancelled:

Don Harper, head of the hosting team in Barnwell, Ken Pavlou, our online organizer and medical authority and myself, came to a very tough, but unanimous decision today, that Corvair College scheduled for November in Barnwell is cancelled.

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Cal, PF, and Tim 2018

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The decision was driven by Covid, and our commitment to running an event with an acceptable level of risk to the people attending the College, Don’s volunteer staff, and people we would interact with from the host community.

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This is an informed, rational decision. Don is a county councilman, and briefed on the status of infection in Barnwell county. They are currently fighting through a very high rate of Covid-D that has their hospitals at 100% capacity. Public buildings in the county are now closed to non-essential business. The hangar we use is a county owned asset, and we can not make an honest argument that the College is an ‘essential’ function. We considered utilizing all precautions, but the very close proximity of hands on instruction, and the 24 hour a day nature of the Barnwell events would negate these steps.

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The city of Barnwell has previously welcomed us with open arms for nine previous Colleges. Asking them for an exemption in the middle of their battle would risk us bringing in a further burden to their health care system, and equally important, it would be the definition of selfish ingratitude, for all times they had previously welcomed us. While Don did not say this, it is important that builders understand that Don, Tim and Cal, the core crew in Barnwell are each in their 70’s, and have conditions that put them in a high risk category. Both Ken and I believe putting them at elevated risk is unacceptable. As a final word on the matter, Don simply said “I knew PF Beck as well as any man, and I know if he were still alive, he would make the same decision to protect everyone”.

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Cancelled or Postponed?

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We are canceling the event, and all people who registered will receive full refunds over the next few days. The primary intent of the event was to hold a tenth Barnwell College, and have the event also serve as a special remembrance of P.F. Beck, the driving force behind the Barnwell Colleges, and an aviator and human being of the first order. We have decided that the latter purpose is the most important one, and this would be best served by having a Corvair Fly-in and weekend social gathering at Barnwell in P.F.’s honor at a later date when safer conditions prevail.

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The Future, and the evolution of Corvair Colleges:

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While this Barnwell College #48 is canceled, I actually held 50 Corvair Colleges since 2000. The un numbered San Antonio College of 2003, the 2006 Canada College, and Colleges 6, 8, and 9 having “B sessions” brings the total up. They were held from Orlando to Portland, and from Boston to Los Angeles. More than 1,000 builders attended, and more than 200 engines were test run. Dozens of Corvair powered planes flew in to these events. Its a pretty good track record, considering the only thing anyone ever paid for was the direct cost of the catered food. The events are really a tribute to the friends who put in the hard work of hosting and volunteering.

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It was my original intent to have a spectacular College #48, and then announce that I would close the 22 year history of Colleges on the last night of #48. For several years I have considered evolving from Corvair Colleges to something new, but it was very difficult to close the chapter on events that brought a great deal to my life, but have also taken a great commitment in time and resources. I do not make this decision lightly, and typing these words brings back a flood of memories of good times with great people, and particularly powerful memories from the Colleges my Father came to.

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Hundreds of people who told me they were ” Going to attend a Corvair College someday”. Many of these people said this to me repeatedly over 10, 15 and even 20 years. It was mostly well intentioned, but if those people are disappointed to read this, perhaps they need to take away the critical lesson my now gone mentor in aviation Chuck Nelson would say: “Wake up, it’s tomorrow.” He was referring to the remorseless march of time though our lives, and your only way to fight it is to aggressively decide to act, today.

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New ways to support builders and have fun in the future, Supervised Builds and Corvair Air Tours.

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My original intent in 2000 for the colleges was to hold 6 or 8 of them to train people who would themselves act as Corvair Tech Counselors in their local areas. The Colleges were more fun and rewarding that I originally imagined, and adding more of them was not difficult. The entire program changed over it’s lifespan, and it is now changing again

Supervised Builds have been going on at my hangar since 2019. I had more than ten builders come in ones and twos for these intense training sessions at my hangar in Florida. I used these builds, and the direct frank feedback from the people who had just assembled and run their engines to refine and improve the program. In the next two weeks I will have more information about the builds, the schedule and opportunity, along with YouTube videos of the builders who already completed their engines here.

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Colleges evolved to combine builder training with a Corvair Fly-in and social gathering for our builders. These do blend, but I would rather separate the work from the play, and have the settings purely serve their individual theme. In May of this year, the Shelbyville IL, fly-in we held in Conjunction with the Corvair Car Convention was a test run for a pure Corvair Fly-in event. It was very well received, and I want to have many more events like this in 2020. I’m fielding ideas for more locations , and I will be glad to take in suggestions in the comments.

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Questions?

If any builder has questions about how their build will be supported and served going forward, please feel free to call me directly, 904-806-8143.

William

At the Zenith factory, all home builders welcome

I will be at this event at the Zenith Aircraft factory for the next two days. Our host Sebastien Heintz, President of Zenith, extends a welcome to all people interested in home built aircraft.

Hope to see many of you here.

Thank You, William .

Home from Oshkosh

Builders:

We Got back at 10pm tonight. It was the most relaxed and fun Oshkosh I can remember. I owe it it my friends, better humans than I deserve ❤️

This year we traveled in the luxurious Silverado of Phil Maxson.

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Twin JaG main video premiere tonight

Builders,

Don’t miss the live premiere of the twin JAG video on my YouTube channel tonight at 7pm est.

Photo from 5am at Oshkosh. EAA put the Twin JAG in the #1 tie down spot for experimentals .

William

Now at Oshkosh 2021

Builders;

A few seconds from Oshkosh 2021 set up, we are in #614, between the home built headquarters and the forums buildings

Show starts Monday, but we are here to get set up early, have a day trip to Brodhead, WI the Pietenpol gathering on Saturday, and a chill out day here Sunday as the aviation faithful flock to air venture.

We have many new announcements this week; Friday is the video premiere 7pm est on the Twin Jag on my YouTube channel; 2850 and Barnwell college videos on Sunday. Stay tuned..

William

New video, Twin JAG

Jim and Ginger flew up to Oshkosh today, in advance of air venture for a photo shoot with the EAA. Here is a video about the plane.

Hope to see many of you at Oshkosh

William.

Carb testing.

Builders;

Here is another look at carb testing tonight.

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Above, a mutually beneficial process. The engine is one I just finished upgrading and rebuilding. I’m putting some break in time on it before it goes into the box and get shipped to California. A few hours will let me make any fine adjustments it may need, ( At 2.5 hours, it has needed literally none ) and verify things like the differential compression and the timing. Rather than just run fuel through the engine and remind my neighbors that we all chose to live at an airport, This exercise has the benefit of allowing me to run the carbs of several other corvair builders, and verify they were correctly rebuilt. The carb pictured is a used MA3-SPA, that I know has not had fuel in it in many years, it is not rebuilt, and yet it ran perfectly. However not all rebuilt carbs have this behavior. They are often tested here.

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Today, I sell NEW Rotec carbs, and because they are made on CNC equipment and they are new, they all run perfectly. Years ago you could say that about rebuilt certified aircraft carbs, but in recent years we have seen a rash of these carbs with serious issues. In the last 3 years I have tested more than 25 of them, and found important issues with about 30% of them. This is obviously unacceptable. To assist people who already own one, I offer test runs on my instrumented test run stand, but going forward, I like to steer builders to a Rotec carb, with I keep many in stock, and are actually less expensive than a rebuilt certified aircraft carb.

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William

New engine run today

Builders;

Here is a look at a rebuilt/ upgraded engine that got its first start snd break in run at my hangar today .

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William

Earl’s Brand “Swivel Seal” Hose ends, the only ones to use.

Builders;

There are two phrases that people use around aircraft construction and maintenance that make my skin crawl, challenge my anger management training, and earned me the ancient moniker “The Worlds Worst Buddhist” (for my talk of tolerance, but failure to demonstrate it) These phrases are:

“It will be alright” – If that was certain, there would be no need to say it around in an attention to justify the corner being cut;

“These are just as good” – If they were, the original product would have never been developed, nor would I have specified it by brand name.

In this story we will look at hose ends, and see how the second phrase should not be uttered in my presence when I speak of Earl’s brand hose ends.

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On the Left, Earl’s Brand “Swivel Seal” hose end. These are the only hose ends I use on anything. I may drive junk trucks, drink cheap beer and have the wardrobe of a homeless person, but when it comes to hose ends, these are the only ones I ever use. If you care to know their pedigree, read the Earl’s site and find out that every single car that finished the Indy 500 for 30 years was 100% equipped with Earl’s hoses and fittings. They cost about 30% more than run of the mill ‘ok’ hose ends.

The hose end on the right is a Summit house brand fitting. It has an end like a certified Aeroquip, but it doesn’t work like one. Lets look at the next picture to see an issue.

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Above, same Summit hose end. The shoulder between the nut and the flare is disintegrating. This was overtourqued by the person who installed it, but still, it should not have done this. This is junk. If you look above, the person who made the hose also put silver anti seize on the nipple, and that is a no-no. The only thing that goes in the hose is oil.

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Above, these are Swivel Seal hose ends. Notice how different the nipple end is. (Earls also makes a barbed style end that is not called “Swivel Seal” , do not use them, they are for low pressure applications. ) This nipple end cuts its own o-ring of sorts out to the Earl’s hose. (While we are on it, the ONLY hose to use is Earl’s Auto-Flex) Lets look at the next picture……

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Above, a hose that was assembled, that I took apart to show you how the nipple end of the Swivel Seal hose end cuts a prefect circle into the end of the hose. This stuff isn’t just good, it is also easy to assemble.

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Pay attention to conversation and internet posts, and look for people using the two phrases above. They are not just phrases, they are a mind set, one you want to give a wide berth in aviation.

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PS, I thank everyone in advance for not using either of the phrases to me, even joking, as I try to watch my blood pressure, and because the title “Worlds worst Buddhist” may sound funny, but no one wants to meet him.

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William

Late night engine assembly

Builders,

Here is a look at a freshly rebuilt motor which will run tomorrow.

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Above, the engine. It came off a flying Dragonfly in California. I have known the builder a while, he flew the plane to Corvair College #37 in chino, in 2016.

If you look closely, this is a non-standard motor. The builder is a skilled machinist , and he made many of the one of a kind parts on the engine. Normally, a avoid working on such engines, but this is the exception, as it is well thought out and exhibits a high level of craftsmanship. It has also been flying a number of years. Most one of a kind motors do not have these qualities.

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Unique engine s take me a lot more time to overhaul, and more money. Take this a a small lesson: Build one of my standard engine layouts. it will make us both happier people.

Thanks

William.

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