Went to YYJ Sunday morning to have breakfast at the “Dakota Café”, with a bunch of dedicated aviation people, pilots builders and avgeeks like myself. The stories were flying around the table and everybody seemed to have a good time. We then proceeded to the hangars so I could start my “Hangar Crawl” In the first hangar there was a yellow Pietenpol Air Camper greeting me when the hangar door was opened. It was moved outside so I could get a few snapshots of it.
The Pietenpol Air Camper is a parasol wing homebuilt aircraft designed by Bernard H. Pietenpol. The first prototype that was built and flown by Pietenpol in 1928.
The Air Camper was designed to be built of spruce and plywood. One of Pietenpol’s goals was to create a plane that was affordable and easy to construct for home builders. Building an Air Camper requires basic woodworking skills and tools. Builders also need to fabricate some metal fittings to attach the wooden parts together. Some welding is required. The plans for the Pietenpol Aircamper were originally published in a four-part serial in the “Flying and Glider” Manual of 1932-33.
We then went to another hangar to continue the “Hangar Crawl” and a Bowers Fly Baby in a very nice colour scheme was there in all its glory.
The Bowers Fly Baby is a homebuilt, single-seat, open-cockpit, wood and fabric low-wing monoplane that was designed by famed aircraft designer and Boeing historian, Peter M. Bowers.
Over 500 Fly Babies have been completed to date, with scores still flying worldwide and an active network of builders and owners. It is built from plans and was designed to be constructed in a garage using only basic hand tools, by a person of average “home handyman” skill in 1962. The plans consist of over one hundred pages of typewritten instructions and dimensioned drawings. After Bowers’ death in 2003 the plans were unavailable for a time, but starting in 2007 they were back on the market, sold by the Bowers family.
Some of the components used, such as the fuel tank and engine, were designed to be taken from the Piper Cub, which were cheap and plentiful in 1962. Even today, the total cost of construction can be under US$10,000.
It started dripping and the Fly Baby was back in dry weather in the hangar. There will be more stories from YYJ when we go on our next “Hangar Crawl”.
Source: World Air Photography and Flyvertosset