We recorded very strong interest in our recent market share post. Traffic spiked to double in the days since our report was posted at ByDanJohnson.com (and that was from record levels). It would appear the LSA segment is hardly in “critical condition,” despite what some may think.
Our annual review of LSA Market Share brings our updated fleet chart and a second chart showing prior-year registrations. While sales of new SLSA remains below par, the market appears to be experiencing spotty but regular recovery from earlier low points.
It is true that a pilot of one type aircraft may not know much about nor (therefore) care much about another type aircraft. Ultralight pilots and turbine pilots may not seem to have much in common. Sailplane pilots and crop dusters, likewise. Powered parachute enthusiasts seem on the opposite side of the spectrum from airline pilots.
Yet, regardless of our interests — or even the country in which we live — pilots as a whole are more alike than different in one critical way: [Read more...]
At the lightest end of flying, one company in the USA excels like no other. For hang glider and paraglider enthusiasts the brand name Wills Wing is as good as it gets.
I have long known and admired the owners of this well-run California company so I am very pleased to offer my congratulations to Wills Wing on its 40th anniversary.
It used to be that January was one of the slowest months of the year. Freezing cold in the northern states combined with short days across the northern hemisphere to produce a sluggish month for all but transport or working aircraft. Recreational flying slowed to the pace of thick syrup pouring from a chilled bottle.
After flying more than 350 different aircraft models, I’ve become reasonably adept at what some pilots call “stick wiggling.” The reference is for all the actions you take to physically fly the plane. This is about what’s required on very basically-equipped ultralight aircraft that I still love to fly. Modern LSA, however, typically offer loaded instrument panels and, while I check out stalls, flight qualities and landings of a LSA, I rarely get any time to play with the panel goodies.
Fortunately, a recent experience in a brand-new Flight Design CTLSi provided a three-hour window to wiggle the stick, plus a whole lot more. [Read more...]