New X04 Web Site and Forum Online In This Issue Owner Projects ...

New X04 Web Site and Forum Online In This Issue Owner Projects ...

The Beacon: News, updates and goings-on at the Orlando-Apopka Airport [X04]Issue No. 3, Winter 2008Some OAA Owners are into more than just airplanesBy Scott AlesThis is a project that is nearingcompletion after more than 2 yearsof work. The boat is currently in theNetherlands undergoing the finalstages of its restoration.BackgroundThe most famous Carlo Riva’sdesigns, the Aquarama has become,over time, more than just a boat.The undisputed flagship of therange, it is celebrated as a nauticallegend in its own right, a superlativein beauty, craftsmanship andperformance that has rarely beensurpassed both on and off the water.Its evocative name perhaps assured itsmythical status, and is derived in partfrom the widescreen Cinerama movieformat, popular in the early 1960s,which is echoed by the boat’s widewindshield.In origin, the Aquarama was a directdescendant of the Tritone, uponwhose hull it was based. First builtin 1962, it incorporated the opensunbathing area of the Tritone Apertowith several new features, includingseparate front seats and a centralnon-slip gangway which allowedeasier access to the water at the back.Like the Tritone it was always a twinengineboat, although the units fittedvaried widely, from 185 hp each to350 hp in the Aquarama Special.1966 Riva Super Aquarama 28’ - Hull No. 125Powered by two 396ci 400 hp big block Chevies1 of 203 ever built and the only one with 400 hp motorsConsidered the Ferrari of boats -- built by Carlos Riva in ItalyIn total 769 boats were built overthe course of the Aquarama’s longproduction run, which only came toan end in 1996. This included 203Super Aquaramas (built 1963-1971),seven Aquarama Lungo (1972 only,and the longest at 8.7 metres), and278 Aquarama Specials (1972-1996).A very special craftOur boat was shipped to theowner of Crusader Marine in Kentuckyfor fitting of 396 ci big block400 hp engines. The Riva documentsshow our boat with 400s andit was the only boat ever producedwith this high horsepower option.Another very important aspect ofthese incredible vessels is that Riva isthe oldest running brand of anythingproduced still today. 165 year oldcompany STILL in business.If you remember the surge ofFerrari values back in 1988 whenEnzo Ferrari passed, many people inthe know are forecasting the same forRivas when the now 85 year oldCarlo moves on.The typical Aquarama sells for$400,000 - $500,000 in very goodused condition. It is speculated thatour boat may be the most valuable30’ or under boat in the world. Estimatesare $750,000 to $2,000,000.The restorer is Riva World in theNetherlands. The project is now 2years and counting but very closeto completion. Riva World locatedmany of the original manufacturersof parts to retool some 40 years laterto produce parts! The Italians don’tseem to throw anything away.Page 4

The Beacon: News, updates and goings-on at the Orlando-Apopka Airport [X04]Issue No. 3, Winter 2008PROJECT continued from page 1laminar and pulling at idle.Most of these peculiarities occurbecause we are using a 2:1 speed reductiongear box pulling an 80” propwith a 12” chord and using considerablymore prop pitch than the conventionalprop. This holds the propspeed and power down that in turnsilences the prop as it is only turning1100 or 1200 rev’s. The propconfiguration was processed thru atheoretical analysis with actual dragpolars to find that should we turn theprop at 2200 rpm, we should be flyingat better than 200 mph. At littlecoincidence that 2200 happens to bepeak torque of the engine. This leadsto the notion that there might reallybe a so called step speed to cruise at.More on this later. This prop andgear box are air boat products. ThePrecision Gear Box is manufacturedPage 6in Oviedo, weighs 55 lbs, and hasbeen pushing boats with small andbig block, boosted, and nitrous forover 20 years with only 2 breakingteeth, a prop strike,and a lifejacket into theprop.This installation hasevolved from the builtup V8 with carburetionand distributor tothe 2005 Corvette LS2crate engine where theFAA has allowed installationwithout openingit up. This wasn’t easyto get, took a lot ofcalls and some memo’sfrom a retiring Vettefan who apparentlyconvinced the governmentthat the GM QCprogram in the SpecialEngines Division waspretty good. These arebasically performanceengines assembled byselect technitions. Our installationis set up so that 2 mechanics canprobably exchange an engine in 4or 5 hours. That’s a new engine for$6,000 and some labor rather thana lengthy and expensive overhaul.We have used all the engine sensorsfound in the car except for the O2sensors aft of the catalytic converter,we have even used theelectronic throttle.The LS series ofengines referred to asthe Gen IV (generation)first appeared in the ’97Corvette as the LS1 andlater in the Comaro.The engine was originallydesigned for marine use, to runat full continuous power, and to belight. They are in the Small Blockclass producing Big Block power.The series has over a half dozen modelsextending to the LS9 650 hp. Tokeep the weight down, it has an aluminumblock and they even went tothe extreme of boring the cam shaftto save lbs. It is fuel injected operatingon 62 psi that uses a special fuelpump. To use this submersed pumpbecame complex and expensive so asearch for a dry replacement foundthe little ’80 VW Golf Bosch hadthe only match that could maintainthat pressure continuously except forexpensive performance pumps. Twoare rigged up for a dual system whichis toggled from one to the other. Theplane presently has the older LS1ECU (computer), but we are in theprocess of replacing that with masterand slave LS2 computers (PCM’s)for full redundancy. The enginepackage will have 100 and 32 ampalternators for absolute backup to theOdessy sealed, NASA certified, battery.The engine has all the normaldefaults found in your car includingyour reduced power or limp mode toavoid overheating. With this engineusing only the original carburetor airscoop, we really don’t have a coolingproblem, we have a heating problem!See PROJECT continued on page 7

The Beacon: News, updates and goings-on at the Orlando-Apopka Airport [X04]Issue No. 3, Winter 2008PROJECT continued from page 6We need a higher temp thermostatto reach the optimum operatingtemp. And there is no shock coolingto worry about. With a radiator fan,you can run static full power all dayholding 230 deg F, but keep in mindthis is only 150hp that doesn’t generatethe heat of a 400hp engine.A touch screen is put in the rightpanel to display selected engine instrumentsin any format desired, andto do an engine scan or analysis likeMr Goodwrench, even when flying.In time there will be options addedto the menu that give the performanceflexibility and safety. We planto have a manual throttle controlhere to back up the electronic one,altitude hold using the cruise control,prop control selections such as constantspeed, constant pitch, or evena relative wind pitch, a ”flex fuel”choice of 4 or 6 cylinders, climbsat constant hp or MP, and others.Complete, it can be considered aFADEC plane.I am told by qualified people thatClassic Rodsstructurally the tail and wingsare strong enough to carry the400 hp. But, you have to transferthe extra torque to the wingand main gear so that it can bedissipated without damage tothe nose structure. Some tubingfrom the engine mount attachto the wing attach points caneasily be done but stiffening thestructure to the strut and gear isa bigger challenge.The plane’s operation is quiet. AtBob White where the ambient noiselevel is low, we measured sound levelsin the low 60’s at 500’ abreast or belowand virtually ambient at 1000’.With the resonators stuffed in theexhaust unseen, it definitely is evenquieter. Head on you can catch thegear box whine mostly because therpm is not high enough to silence thehelical gears. This can be hid withcowl changes and dampening.By the way, we have 400 hpbecause the FAA insists that you cannot operate an auto engine continuousat high horsepower like the flats,and they are right. But they had noargument of installing a big engineand using it at low power settings.This way TBO should easily bebeyond that of the aircraft engines.With the airborne clean environment,constant and mild power setting,regular preventive maintenance,3000 hours could be thenorm. By changes tothe prop and/or speedreduction, one can useall or more of the 400hp and still use only 160for flight. Add air conditioning,more powergeneration, surveillancepackages, engine boost and so on.Another big advantage from usingauto power always allows you tooperate with the greenest and cheapestfuel. We can run on ethanol withinjector and logic changes and noshort term effects, but there wouldbe minor changes to avoid the longterm problems. Cruising at 120 uses5 gph of 87 octane mogas and yieldsgreat range and endurance. And itstarts like a car, one prop rotationeach time.Where does this all lead to? Certainlywe will market the installationfor experimental use after we havecompleted an update of the paneldisplay and added the dual computers.Research will be conducted onthe prop. Presently we are trying toobtain an MT electric 3 blade 400hp prop to examine a number ofpossibilities; several blade designs,wireless power and control transfer,and the 200 hp myth are some.The package may be installed in theWilga to make a nice kit utility planesince it is out of production. Thenumbers tell me that a 400 mph singleengine category, dual LS engines,6 passenger plane can be build on theblended wing principle without a lotof sophistication.It sure is intriguing. Stop by andsee the Chevssna.Page 7

The Beacon: News, updates and goings-on at the Orlando-Apopka Airport [X04]Christmas Party at Universal’s HangarPhotos courtesy of Michael Lowry PhotographyIssue No. 3, Winter 2008Don’t ever let anairplane take yousomeplace whereyour brain hasn’tarrived at leasta couple ofminutes earlier.— Andy AndersonDoes your lotNEED SOD?What about mowing,landscaping, includingrock and concrete?T.N.T. EarthworksMike HeringtonTEL 407 468 1940mherington@cfl.rr.comUniversal Air Service [Hangar 161]threw a spectacular celebration forChristmas. With the help of fellowOAA owner, Bill Widden (Hangar81 and owner of Ice Magic), thehangar was turned into multi-coloredfantasy land, complete with cardtables, ample seating, dance floor,bars and a buffet of very yummyfood. Halfway through the evening,guests were treated to aerialsilk dancing performed on brightlycolored streamers hung from the ceiling.Both beautiful and suspensefulit was quite a show. The talent andcreativity of our owners never ceasesPage 8to amaze! The event drew many fromthe local aviation community whohad yet to visit X04, giving themtheir first look at the “Newest OldAirport in Central Florida.”The Beacon is published regularlyas a cooperative effort between ChandelleRealty and Macbeth Aerial Photography.The stated purpose of this publication is toshare the exciting news about the continuedgrowth and progress at Orlando-Apopka Airport[X04] with the airport owners, friends, neighborsand nearby communities. Distribution is viaUSPS, email, and online download. Pleasesend subscription requests, advertising inqiries,letters, press releases, calendar events,announcements and swap shop items to:EMAIL: news@OAABeacon.comTEL: (407) 814-9126USPS: The BEACON Newsletter1321 Apopka Airport Rd, FBOApopka, FL 32712Deadlines for Issue #4 (Spring 2008):Feb. 19 - Story SubmissionsFeb. 24 - Ad Space requestsFeb. 28 - Ad Materials

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