Hello everyone. I believe the CH 601 HD has a bit of a gull wing structure. I absolutely love that design. I am considering ordering one. Zenith Air says they still sell a few and have the parts for it. Does anyone know a reason why I should not order that model?

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Jeff, thanks for chiming in. It looks like your main gear has the bungee cord shocks. Is that right, and if so how often do you change the bungees?


Stan Cooper

Funny you should ask! My second nose gear bungee gave way on a landing in November 2016. I installed I new one a couple weeks later. With the tool from Zenith it is an afternoon job if you can keep from fooling around with something else while you are at it. That is two replacements in 8 years on mine. I still have the original main gear bungees and check them as Nick taught me to on a regular basis and at the condition inspection. They last longer possibly because they are not subject to the heat forward of the firewall. I have Larry McFarlane's tow bar and collar on the nose gear. The collar worked and prevented a prop strike when the bungee failed. The plane had a decided rake to it though without the bungee.

Thanks. That's good news about the longevity of the bungees on the mains, and I suspect you're right about the engine heat causing premature failure of the nose gear bungee. I replaced mine in July because it looked like it had a social disease and my prop ground clearance was getting scary. I also used the Zenith tool; you still have to lower the strut below the top firewall stiffener hole to loop the bungee over the strut top, but the tool definitely makes the job easier. I'm thinking about installing the Viking spring strut. 


The Viking strut was suggested to me by another Zenair builder too. Frankly, I already had confidence in replacing the bungee so I went ahead and did that. I need to save my pennies for an ADS-B solution soon. I will probably replace this bungee on a shorter time interval. Although all is well, having it break does get your attention. Mine did not look as yours does in the picture before it totally gave way. It is hanging on the hanger wall but I don't have a picture here at home, but all the rubber strands broke. I thank Larry for the nose gear leg collar which stopped the leg from moving too far upward and causing all sorts of mayhem. I completely endorse adding it if you keep the bungee cord on the nose gear.
Thank You Jeff. Fantastic. It sounds like you had to do some real tinkering to get it to fit.
I ought to point out that putting a 3300 in the HD is the same as putting a 3300 in an HDS. I was lucky to have the benefit of several great builders go before me. As I remember they were people like Jeff Small, Grant Corriveau, Fred Hulen, Michel Therien, and Don Honabach. Back then we were still using the Matronics list. Last time I looked all that wisdom and problem solving was still there online. I have an archival CD of the contents too that Matronics will provide. So there is a plethora of information about installing the 3300 in an HD or HDS available. Between these folks most if not all of the problems have been worked out. So don't think that there isn't help available for this combination.
Fantastic, thank you so much. I'm sure I will be putting those resources to good use. I probably won't get to that step for a coup,e years yet since I'm justing starting out. But I wanted to know this info exists before I commit to the 601 HD. THANKS AGAIN!
Thank Stan! I never considered the registration data base. I just dont like the rotax. It is Expensive and sounds like a clothes dryer with coins tumbling around in it, at least per You Tube vids.
I heard the Jabiru 3300 purrs like a kitten.

i am looking for a faster plane  i fly a ch701 c/w 80hp 912 now.. and am getting 90mph cruse... what you are saying is the 601hd with 100hp 912s will only do 10mph faster....

i was looking at the web site and they are claiming 120mph... ???? who do i trust


I dont trust the specified numbers.  I have seen 110mph in discussions with a 100 hp 912.  I will put a viking 130 hp engine in mine. People say the limiting factor is the wing design - increased speed just increases drag. But no one has ever put a 130 hp high torque engine in it. It will be fun to see the numbers.  Unfortunately, my airplane wont be complete for another several years.  I agree that I wanted a faster airplane, but since I’ll be flying sport pilot rules anyway, and since I adore the design, the 601 HD is for me.

The 601 HD design is supposed to be lmited to 115 hp, so I’ll keep the V-130 to max 5000 rpm at which the output is 115 hp.  We’ll see..... Afterall, these are EXPERIMENTAL airplanes!

Will be curious how yours works out – have always liked the 601HD and although there are newer, faster, wilder birds, I find 90-95mph quite relaxing,  I don’t need something that gets up in the mach numbers… 

Did I understand that Zenith still sells a few parts/kits for this model – I may have to inquire…

Yes, they do


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