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Stories from our members...

Building a Lancair IVP
by Jason Singleton

I put some 950 hours on my Mooney since August 1999. This faithful little bird delivers me to many court appearances and depositions throughout California and Nevada.

However, flying out of Eureka requires a fair amount of IFR, and it seems as though avoiding ice in the winter occurred more often than not. I wanted more airplane, something with de-ice. I leaned heavily toward a twin, even taking several days of multi-engine training.I had found a fully de-iced, air-conditioned, clean 310 (with two 350 HP, low time Lycomings) for $250,000.00.A very snorty airplane indeed.

My fuel bill on the Mooney was already $450.00 per month.The long term cost of feeding and maintaining two thirsty engines caused me to look elsewhere. I knew the Lancair IVP was enough airplane in every respect but one. Ice on thin laminar flow wings could only be trouble.

Doing a bit more research, it turns out de-ice for the IVP is in development by Northcoast Technologies.They are also, as rumor has it, certifying the same system for the Lancair Columbia 400. I set about finding an IVP kit.

I found two in Northern California, both partially completed. The better value was purchased, and shipped to American Air Racing in Reno Nevada. That was a year ago this December. They are now the builder of record.I give American Air Racing high marks. John is an aeronautical engineer, who builds and races Thunder Mustangs for fun.John and his crew have made significant progress in one year.

Test flights may start in about three or four months, with paint and interior to follow.Unfortunately, Northcoast Technologies has yet to ship a single de-ice kit.

Anyway, sometime this spring I look forward to going up to Redmond for the Lancair transition training.There have been a few glitches along the way, but no more than would be expected.I was surprised when Airpower, Inc. beat Lancair's OEM price on the engine by $6,000.00! One IV owner I ran into in LA said he made it from LA to Redmond, Oregon, one particular trip, in two hours and twenty minutes.One trip into Reno, he was told by the controller to slow down, as he was going over 250 knots below 10,000 feet. I suspect the 4P will be "enough airplane" for awhile.