US Light Aircraft Hornet

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US Light Aircraft Hornet
Role Kit aircraft
National origin United States
Manufacturer US Light Aircraft Corporation
Higher Class Aviation
Oklahoma Light Aircraft
Designer Jim Millett[1]
First flight 1993
Introduction 1994
Status Production completed
Produced 1994-circa 2008
Number built 45 (2003)[2]
Unit cost
US$20,400 (2003 kit base price)[2]
US$49,995 (2008 ready to fly Super Hornet price)[3]

The US Light Aircraft Hornet is an American two-seats-in-tandem, pusher configuration, tricycle gear, strut-braced high wing ultralight aircraft, that was produced US Light Aircraft Corporation of Ramona, California between 1994 and circa 2008 in kit form for amateur construction. It was also available as a factory-completed light-sport aircraft.[1][2][4][5][6][7][8][9]

After US Light Aircraft ceased production the design was taken up by Higher Class Aviation and then later Oklahoma Light Aircraft of Blackwell, Oklahoma, which reportedly had the Hornet in production in 2011.[10] By July 2012 Oklahoma Light Aircraft's website had been removed and the company appeared to be out of business.[11][12]

Design and development[edit]

The Hornet was first introduced at Sun 'n Fun in 1994. Externally the aircraft greatly resembles the Quad City Challenger II, but internally the structure is very different. When it was available the Hornet was priced considerably higher than the Challenger II.[4]

The Hornet structure is built up from aluminium tubing, riveted together with gussets. The aircraft is then covered with doped aircraft fabric. The Hornet's wing incorporates dual bridge-section spars, with a single strut and V-jury struts. The wing was sandbag-tested to 7g without failure. The aircraft includes electric flaps and trim, dual controls and two wing-mounted fuel tanks. The landing gear incorporates pneumatic suspension on all three wheels, including the steerable nosewheel, and hydraulic brakes on the mainwheels. The Hornet can also be equipped with floats or skis. Early production aircraft experienced elevator flutter at speeds in excess of 100 mph (161 km/h) but this was addressed by mass-balancing the elevator.[4][8][13]

Reported construction times from the kit are 250–300 hours.[4][6][8]

Operational history[edit]

The Hornet won Grand Champion Light Plane at both Sun 'n Fun and AirVenture in 1995.[8]

Variants[edit]

Hornet
Base model, powered by a 55 hp (41 kW) Hirth 2703, or optionally the 65 hp (48 kW) Hirth 2706 engine.[4][8][9]
Super Hornet
Light sport model, fully assembled and powered by a 80 hp (60 kW) Rotax 912UL or optionally the 100 hp (75 kW) Rotax 912ULS engine[3]

Specifications (Hornet)[edit]

Data from Cliche and Kitplanes[4][6]

General characteristics

  • Crew: one
  • Capacity: one passenger
  • Length: 20 ft 0 in (6.10 m)
  • Wingspan: 27 ft 6 in (8.38 m)
  • Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
  • Wing area: 137 sq ft (12.7 m2)
  • Empty weight: 475 lb (215 kg)
  • Gross weight: 1,000 lb (454 kg)
  • Fuel capacity: 10 US gallons (38 litres)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Hirth 2703 , 55 hp (41 kW)

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 120 mph (193 km/h; 104 kn)
  • Cruise speed: 80 mph (70 kn; 129 km/h)
  • Stall speed: 35 mph (30 kn; 56 km/h)
  • Never exceed speed: 140 mph (122 kn; 225 km/h)
  • Range: 400 mi (348 nmi; 644 km) with auxiliary fuel tanks
  • Service ceiling: 12,000 ft (3,658 m)
  • G limits: +4
  • Maximum glide ratio: 9:1
  • Rate of climb: 800 ft/min (4.1 m/s)
  • Wing loading: 7.30 lb/sq ft (35.6 kg/m2)

See also[edit]

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Downey, Julia: 2002 Kit Aircraft Directory, Kitplanes, Volume 18, Number 12, December 2001, page 71 & 85. Kitplanes Acquisition Company. ISSN 0891-1851
  2. ^ a b c Newby-Gonzalez, Tori: 2004 Kit Aircraft Directory, Kitplanes, Volume 20, Number 12, December 2003, page 80. Belvoir Publications. ISSN 0891-1851
  3. ^ a b US Light Aircraft (March 2008). "Super Hornet". Archived from the original on 28 March 2008. Retrieved 7 February 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f Cliche, Andre: Ultralight Aircraft Shopper's Guide 8th Edition, page B-84. Cybair Limited Publishing, 2001. ISBN 0-9680628-1-4
  5. ^ US Light Aircraft (March 2008). "The Sport Pilot certificate is now a reality". Archived from the original on 28 March 2008. Retrieved 7 February 2011. 
  6. ^ a b c Downey, Julia: 1999 Kit Aircraft Directory, Kitplanes, Volume 15, Number 12, December 1998, page 74. Primedia Publications. ISSN 0891-1851
  7. ^ Downey, Julia: 2001 Kit Aircraft Directory, Kitplanes, Volume 17, Number 12, December 2000, page 79. Kitplanes Acquisition Company. ISSN 0891-1851
  8. ^ a b c d e Purdy, Don: AeroCrafter - Homebuilt Aircraft Sourcebook, page 278. BAI Communications. ISBN 0-9636409-4-1
  9. ^ a b Bertrand, Noel; Rene Coulon; et al: World Directory of Leisure Aviation 2003-04, pages 22-23. Pagefast Ltd, Lancaster OK, 2003. ISSN 1368-485X
  10. ^ Bayerl, Robby; Martin Berkemeier; et al: World Directory of Leisure Aviation 2011-12, page 66. WDLA UK, Lancaster UK, 2011. ISSN 1368-485X
  11. ^ Higher Class Aviation and Oklahoma Light Aircraft (n.d.). "sporthornet.com". Archived from the original on 10 March 2007. Retrieved 5 August 2012. 
  12. ^ Network Solutions (n.d.). "Sporthornet.com". Retrieved 5 August 2012. 
  13. ^ US Light Aircraft (March 2008). "Airframe". Archived from the original on 28 March 2008. Retrieved 7 February 2011. 

External links[edit]