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NZ Bearhawkers get together

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  • NZ Bearhawkers get together

    We had an impromptu get together of many of the New Zealand Bearhawker "club" last weekend.

    We had full representation of the Barrows line up, including owners of kits for the LSA, Patrol, and all the flying 4 places in NZ (only two of them!).

    The fly-in started at Dannevirke aerodrome, and then moved to Otane at the future home airstrip of the first NZ BH LSA. It is a reasonably challenging spot, but not too bad in a Bearhawk. The strip is 600ft long with deer fences at each end, and power lines at the uphill end. There is a drain running through the middle, with a narrow bridge you have to land across, perhaps twice the width of the landing gear. Both times I landed there, I could easily have stopped before the bridge if I applied any brakes.

    FHR is the newest addition to the airworthy Bearhawk fleet in NZ, and has about 36 hours on the Hobbs. A light spell of benchmarking suggests both are cruising at about the same speed, but we need to have a proper go at it. Both are running an IO-540 with a similar induction system and the same exhaust. FHR has a three-blade Hoffman wooden composite propeller.

    Here are a couple of photos:

    Forum member "Fellman" at Dannevirke aerodrome
    20160306_105728.jpg



    Here we are at Otane, although we are not at the challenging airstrip in this photo. 20160306_133135.jpg
    Last edited by Battson; 03-11-2016, 04:02 PM.

  • #2
    Very cool that you were able to get everyone together. Both planes look very nice, and that Hoffman wood-composite prop looks pretty cool!

    I'd love to see pictures of that strip with the "bridge" in the middle. I've been thinking that I might be able to make an 800' strip at my place, if I could figure out a way to bridge a roughly 3-4 meter wide wash-out... It would be totally awesome to be able to keep the Patrol on a grass strip at my own house! But probably a pipe-dream...
    Jim Parker
    Farmersville, TX (NE of Dallas)
    RANS S-6ES – E-LSA powered by 100 HP Rotax 912ULS

    Comment


    • Battson
      Battson commented
      Editing a comment
      The bridge was basically a length of concrete culvert with an earthen bridge, like this but without the safety rails:
      http://www.lmnoeng.com/Pipes/culvert.jpg

      There is a story of a 185 landing there and getting half a wheel track off the side of the culvert, and almost ground looping.... I thought there was enough room for a calm-ish day.

  • #3
    Nice! Sad that in such beautiful flying country there are only 2 ships of this type. Isn't there another one under construction?

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    • Battson
      Battson commented
      Editing a comment
      Total figures for NZ (I am aware of):

      Bearhawk 4 place: 4 kitsets, 2 scratch builds well advanced, numerous other plans holders
      Patrol: 1 kitset
      LSA: 1 kitset

  • #4
    There are four kits for the 4 place BH in New Zealand. Two flying and two still being built. In addition - there is one Patrol kit coming together and one LSA kit on its way.

    For me it is super cool to see these two flying Bearhawks at an Fly In together in NZ. It makes me really proud of these two builders who got them flying and did such great jobs building. Mark

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    • #5
      Yep, beautiful airplanes flying in a beautiful country. Some day, I'm going to go there for a visit... NZ and OZ are really the only two places outside the US & Canada that I REALLY want to go visit.

      PS - thanks for the photo of the culvert / bridge. I should have thought of that to begin with. Now I'm thinking "It just might work..." But I've got to finish a Patrol first!
      Last edited by JimParker256; 03-12-2016, 05:19 PM. Reason: Added PS
      Jim Parker
      Farmersville, TX (NE of Dallas)
      RANS S-6ES – E-LSA powered by 100 HP Rotax 912ULS

      Comment


      • #6
        Originally posted by Battson View Post
        The strip is 600ft long with deer fences at each end, and power lines at the uphill end. There is a drain running through the middle, with a narrow bridge you have to land across, perhaps twice the width of the landing gear. Both times I landed there, I could easily have stopped before the bridge if I applied any brakes.

        Very cool!

        I feel better now about my planned "air strip". 1200" with a terrace at one end and a barbed wire fence at the other ;-) The country isn't near as pretty though. As a consolation prize I have plenty of cooking wood for a long time. Mesquites cleared a little over a month ago.

        Wes
        You do not have permission to view this gallery.
        This gallery has 1 photos.

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        • #7
          My wife and I are planning a month in NZ in the next year or two. The trick is going to be to plan it around the Warbirds over Wanaka and any other cool aviation events :-)

          All this talk of relatively short runways is encouraging as I have put two runways in on my property (ok, that is stretching it; I had a local farmer disk them and roll them and I threw seed on them). At 1300' and 800', they should be plenty for the 4pl Bearhawk when it is done. They are not, however, enough for me to be comfortable getting in and out in my RV-8. Kind of annoying to own two runways and not be able to fly off of them :-)

          Pakenham Outernational.jpg
          -------------------
          Mark

          Maule M5-235C C-GJFK
          Bearhawk 4A #1078 (Scratch building - C-GPFG reserved)
          RV-8 C-GURV (Sold)

          Comment


          • Chris In Milwaukee
            Chris In Milwaukee commented
            Editing a comment
            Nice setup! I'm sure you're excited about flying from there one day.

          • JimParker256
            JimParker256 commented
            Editing a comment
            Very cool! I like it a lot!

          • Battson
            Battson commented
            Editing a comment
            Piles of room there for a Bearhawk 4-place!

        • #8
          A little while ago we flew up to visit with forum member "Fellman" at his ranch. It wasn't our first visit, but seeing as there were two Bearhawk's in one place, here are some photos:

          Here we are landing at his place, you can see basically the whole airstrip in the photo. The steep downhill slope at the beginning (behind the plane) combined with the sheep fence, means you have to land some way into the airstrip.


          FHR and NJB parked in the sunshine.
          ​

          Time to remove a few bugs collected on the 250NM flight north.
          ​

          Here we are lifting off for some reciprocal test flying of each other's aircraft. This is the usual max performance climb out for the 4 place / 260hp.
          ​

          Thanks "Fellman" for having us!

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