AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 57

Both aircraft are based on the basic Avid design shape developed by Dan Denny and Dean Wilson in 1981. The Kitfox resulted after Denny and Wilson parted ways. Since that time, the Kitfox has become one of the industry’s most copied designs. While the Aerotrek is also based on Avid plans, it followed its own path with refinements in the Czech Republic that were independent of changes made in Idaho. The Avid that the Aerotrek is based on was shorter and narrower, and had a lower gross weight than the Kitfox. While the Kitfox and Aerotrek appear similar, there are significant differences in landing gear systems, the baggage area, and cockpit size. The Kitfox has adjustable rudder pedals and seats, while the Aerotrek relies on seat pads for adjustment and does not have adjustable rudder pedals. Unique in the industry At Kitfox, customer training comes as part of the purchase price. You can’t eliminate the training and get a lower price, but you can take a big step toward safety by taking advantage of it. Kitfox Aircraft signed a training agreement with Stick and Rudder Aviation, 40 miles away in Boise—and owned by Leadabrand. The 13,000-hour backcountry charter pilot and corporate jet instructor uses his tailwheel Kitfox for training. The school is open to the general public. Those completing a 10-hour course can rent Leadabrand’s Kitfox.

Leadabrand chose the tailwheel model because students learn to manage it in every axis, rather than relying on brakes and a nosewheel. Those lacking a tailwheel endorsement will get one when training is completed. He believes that even pilots who buy a nosewheel Kitfox will be better pilots after tailwheel training. He opted for the Dynon SkyView 10-inch display because he wanted the students to have an uncluttered cockpit with GPS navigation, moving map, terrain, flight instruments, and engine monitoring at their fingertips. It’s a low student workload. His $12,100 option package includes the Dynon display, a Garmin GTX 327 transponder, and a PS Engineering PM3000 intercom (with Karaoke Mode for singing along to your favorite song). A Garmin SL40 comm radio comes standard. Another option, which he did not purchase, provides a Garmin G3X complete glass cockpit, including synthetic vision, for $20,785. A BRS recovery parachute is an option, but no customer has ever purchased one. Included in the standard package are dual hydraulic toe brakes; aluminum spring landing gear; cabin heat; an angle of attack system; an hour meter; and all standard instruments needed for flight, including an airspeed indicator, altimeter, compass, and engine gauges. Landing lights are a $1,295 option, along with a $995 navigation light and strobe package.

The McBeans chose beefy, tough parts, as seen with the Grove landing gear and brakes, in keeping with their claim that this is a rugged airplane for the backcountry. They use windscreens and windows from LP Aero, a company that claims to be the world’s largest manufacturer of FAA-approved windshields and windows. Compare it with some of the thin, nonaviation plastic used by other Light Sport manufacturers. All LSAs are a challenge for graceful entry, but I found the Kitfox to be one of the easiest to board. Once inside, a pulldown bar across the door is very helpful for closing and locking it. Rudder pedals are easily adjusted for your size by simply pulling a lever on the center console. The electric stabilizer trim is controlled by a rocker switch conveniently located on the same console, under your right hand. Landings are made at 60 mph indicated (that’s just 52 knots), or 55 mph if making a short-field landing. Just the sight of the wide stance of the main wheels brings a smile to most tailwheel pilots, because it means greater stability during takeoff and landing. Stability in level flight makes for a low workload, but stable doesn’t have to mean boring. It is fun to fly thanks to a sporty, quick roll rate. You’ll soon have that PS Engineering intercom in Karaoke Mode, singing your way through the skies. Email the author at alton.marsh@aopa. org.

The full panel shown here is a $12,100 option and includes the Dynon SkyView glass cockpit display. While the Dynon display normally shows flight instruments, engine instruments, and a moving map with terrain, it can be configured to any combination of screens, or feature just one of the three categories of information as needed.
AOPA PILOT • 57 • APRIL 2012



AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012

AOPA Turbine Pilot Magazine - April 2012
Contents
President’s Position
Hangar Talk
AOPA Media
AOPA Action
Letters
Waypoints
Proficient Pilot
Foundation Focus
License to Learn
Pilot Counsel
Fly Well
Pilot Briefing
L–39: Cool Flying. ’Nuff Said.
Flying a ‘Real’ Jet
For Pax Sake
Mentoring Matters: FARs for Jets
Trouble for Throttle Jockeys
Turbine Market Shows Mixed Signals
Glass Cockpits: Moving Targets
LSA: Big Foot Kitfox
Survival Mode
Aerial Amazement
Safety Pilot Landmark Accident: Calm in Chaos
Rebirth of the Pioneer RV
Revisiting a Tragedy
Bouncing Back
Technique: Mountain Majesties
Tougher Than a Tornado Sweepstakes: Setting the Hook
Products: A Range of Rescue Devices
Wx Watch: Radar Revolution
Dogfight: Time On Their Hands
Never Again
Fly-Outs
Fly by Wire
Pilots
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - AOPA Turbine Pilot Magazine - April 2012
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Cover2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 1
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - President’s Position
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 5
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Hangar Talk
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 7
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 8
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 9
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - AOPA Media
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 11
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - AOPA Action
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 13
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 14
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 15
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 16
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 17
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 18
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 19
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 20
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 21
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 22
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 23
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Letters
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 25
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 26
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 27
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Waypoints
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 29
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Proficient Pilot
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 31
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 32
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 33
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Foundation Focus
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 35
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - License to Learn
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 37
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Pilot Counsel
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 39
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Fly Well
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 41
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Pilot Briefing
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 43
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 44
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 45
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 46
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 47
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 48
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - I1
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - I2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 49
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - LSA: Big Foot Kitfox
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 51
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 52
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 53
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 54
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 55
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 56
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 57
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Survival Mode
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 59
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 60
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 61
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 62
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 63
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 64
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 65
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Aerial Amazement
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 67
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 68
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 69
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 70
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 71
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 72
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 73
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Safety Pilot Landmark Accident: Calm in Chaos
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 75
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 76
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 77
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 78
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Rebirth of the Pioneer RV
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 80
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 81
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 82
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Revisiting a Tragedy
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 84
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 85
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 86
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Bouncing Back
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 88
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 88a
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 88b
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 89
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 90
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Technique: Mountain Majesties
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 92
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Tougher Than a Tornado Sweepstakes: Setting the Hook
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 94
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Products: A Range of Rescue Devices
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 96
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Wx Watch: Radar Revolution
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 98
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 99
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Dogfight: Time On Their Hands
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 101
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Never Again
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 103
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 104
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 105
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Fly-Outs
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Fly by Wire
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 108
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 109
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 110
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - 111
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Pilots
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Cover3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - April 2012 - Cover4
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