On Sunday 7/16 about 12:30, My lovely CH801 made its last landing.

Gusty cross caused a bounce when I touched back down the nose gear collapsed, we slid about 50 feet, it grabbed the sod, and flipped. Nothing but band aid sized injuries for myself and PAX gotten as we crawled out. The rugged cage did its job and protected us. It was a lousy landing but not any worse than some before and better than many. But this time the bungee, failed and allowed nose to drop sufficiently for prop to dig which started the rest of the sequence.

Upon examination it turned out that the 2 year old bungee had already failed over half way through since last oil change before Easter when it was visually inspected. I had it on my upgrade list to install a steel spring and shock mod during inspection in Oct, and possibly would have caught it during oil change which was supposed to happen today.

Check your bungees often or better yet do the steel bungee upgrade or equivalent.  I have a design for a simple rugged, easy upgrade that should cost around $100 to do.

Total time on aircraft was ~180 hours since new, got its papers in 12/2013. I put 158 hours and 305 landings on it at 84 airports, private grass strips and duster strips in that time. AC is total loss. requiescat in pace N801G. On the brighter side, anyone out there have an 801 airframe or partial kit they want to sell?  Depending on insurance outcome, I may by the wreck and transfer a lot of nice slightly used parts.

Fly Safely!

Views: 919

Attachments:

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Sam - Met you once at Sun n Fun in Homebuilt Camping and looked at your plane.  I'm so glad that no one was seriously injured - that seems to be typical in Zenith landing crashes, thank goodness! 

I know the prop strike is unavoidable if the nose gear collapses, but out of curiosity, does the 801 have a welded stop ring on the nose gear strut to prevent a prop strike if the bungee breaks?  (On the 750, I've got about 9" of prop-ground clearance with a broken bungee and the lower nose gear bearing resting on the welded stop ring.)

Check your bungees often or better yet do the steel bungee upgrade or equivalent.  I have a design for a simple rugged, easy upgrade that should cost around $100 to do.

You're killing me with that "teaser" about the $100 upgrade!  Ha!  I'd love to hear the details and leave it to you as to whether to start a new thread or keep it in this one!

Again, glad you're OK!

John

N750A

Bad day Sam, glad nobody got hurt.   

Sometimes these things look better in a few days once the initial shock is over.  Might not be as bad as it looks.

Tim 

It's striking and thought-provoking to see how well the passenger compartment (and you!) fared.

I never considered the 801 (or anything else non-LSA), but seeing how well the 801 handled this, plus the new medical rule that just got passed.  It gets a guy thinking....

Prediction:  more guys are going to be impressed with, and take a second look at, the 801.

Pat

N63PZ

Glad to hear you made it out. I would like the info on the gear mod

Attached are a couple of files with data and a description as well as another person's solution. It got as far as measurements written down on an old scrap of aluminum, some numbers on a calculator, and some internet research. Some details to work out, but this is not a rocket science problem. It only requires a Junk Yard Wars solution. So you all read the attached and tell me if I am crazy.  No welding, no complex machining. Most of it can be done with a drill press and a hole saw. I am focusing now on finding a new airframe. It would be great if one of you guys had it all worked out in detail by the time I get another.

Bon Chance'

Attachments:

BTW, Sam, you mentioned in the accident description you posted in the Classified Ads that the bungee had 2 years of service life but you didn't know how old it was from manufacture. The manufacturer, SBC Industries in Scottsboro, Alabama, has a Color Code chart on this page where you can look at the color of the threads in the bungee cover and determine the year and quarter of manufacture.

I once asked SBC for a recommendation for shelf life/service life for the bungees but they said that SBC had no specific recommendation and "to go by what the airplane manufacturer says."

John

RSS

New from Zenith:

Zenith Aircraft For Sale 

Classified listing for buying or selling your Zenith building or flying related stuff...

                                                     

Weather Maps


Custom Instrument Panels
for your Zenith
:

Custom instrument panels are now available directly from Zenith Aircraft Company exclusively for Zenith builders and owners. Pre-cut panel, power distribution panel, Approach Fast Stack harnesses, Dynon and Garmin avionics, and more.


Custom Upholstery Kits for your Zenith Aircraft:

Zenith Vinyl Upholstery Kits


Zenith Apparel from EAA:


Zenair Floats


Flying On Your Own Wings:
A Complete Guide to Understanding Light Airplane Design, by Chris Heintz


Builder & Pilot Supplies:

How to videos from HomebuiltHELP.com

Developed specifically for Zenith builders (by a builder) these videos on DVD are a great help in building your own kit plane by providing practical hands-on construction information. Visit HomebuiltHelp.com for the latest DVD titles.

 

Zenith transition and Sport Pilot training:

Quality Sport Planes
Cloverdale, California:

Wheels & Wings

Pro Builder Assistance

© 2019   Created by Zenith.Aero.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service