Don Herbel's Blog (11)

pre-flight error

I share this incident to express what I learned from a recent flight. I was attending a local fly-in event last week-end and  was preparing to depart for my home field. I was in too much in a hurry to demonstrate my CH701's STOL capability to a largely non-pilot crowd and strapped myself in without first retrieving my ignition key from my pocket. I found the key after first digging out my very bulky personal key ring and leaving it on the cockpit floor and proceeding to start the engine.…


Added by Don Herbel on August 15, 2017 at 10:02am — 2 Comments

Leaking Fuel Sender

I learned almost the hard way of a problem with the VDO fuel sender used in my CH701. I purchased my wings and fuel system kit in 2010 and first flew…


Added by Don Herbel on August 23, 2013 at 1:23pm — 6 Comments

Rotax engine problem

My Rotax 912ULS has been using oil since new.  Lockwood Aviation tells me this is not normal. I experienced reduced RPM on takeoff July 4 and had to return for landing. my first since returning from the June 22 Zenith Fly-in at the factory.  #1 cylinder has low compression and badly oil-fouled plugs. I have only one year and 68 hours operation on the engine.  ASB 912-062 applies only to cylinders 2 and 3 and not to my serial number. Anyone experience a similar problem out there?

Added by Don Herbel on July 9, 2013 at 7:37am — 4 Comments

CH701 nav light circuit breaker

701 builders: what trip value circuit breaker are you using to protect the nav light circuit of the Aeroflash dual (strobe, nav) light unit?  The units were supplied by Zenith as an option for my 701.  For a while during phase 1, I had a bad ground for the right wing nav light and could never tell during flight whether the light was working or not.  If I thumped the wingtip while in the hangar, the light would come on.  Aeroflash says the current draw for a 12V system should be 2 amps per…


Added by Don Herbel on June 1, 2013 at 3:07pm — 5 Comments

701 top windshield screws

701 builders:  I was too cautious about forcing the screws down on the top aft edge of my windshield for fear of cracking the plexiglass.  As a result, I "wobbled" out two screw holes in the top tube of the cabin frame and now the screw holes are stripped out and won't tighten.  Any machinists out there that can advise me how to fix them without removing the windshield?

Don Herbel


Claremore OK

Added by Don Herbel on June 16, 2012 at 8:52am — 4 Comments

Website problem

Is anyone out there experiencing problem with the Zenith Aero website? For about 10 days now I cannot download the posted photos or videos.  Links to these features from my e-mail also won't work.  Internet Explorer automatically brings up the message "Internet Explorer has stopped trying to restore this website.  It appears the website continues to have a problem." I have sent two messages to Zenith.Aero and they have not responded.

Added by Don Herbel on April 4, 2012 at 10:00am — 16 Comments

Glare shield, instrument panel

Fellow builders:  do you have any photos/ suggestions on how to provide padding protection for the trailing edge of the glare shield on a CH701? The drawings refer to it as the front top skin, part # 7F14-4

Added by Don Herbel on December 12, 2011 at 11:22am — 4 Comments

CH701 standard door windows

The photo assembly guides depict the door window plastic being installed sitting on the work table.  Absolutely put the door frame back into the jig before pilot drilling the window to the frame!  Finding this out the hard way:  door was twisted and would no longer fit in the cabin opening.  I was able to reposition the assembly in the jig and re-drill the pilot holes in the bottom edge and forward and aft door frame tubes and salvage the Lexan plastic.  The upper hinge and the door side…


Added by Don Herbel on May 7, 2011 at 11:33am — 3 Comments

CH701 slat jig and Homebuilt Help DVDs

I will be at the Zenith Fly-In to Spring event on June 25.  If anyone is interested in my 701 slat jig, I ask for the cost of the wood.  My Homebuilt Help videos have been sold.

Blue Skies

Don Herbel

Added by Don Herbel on April 18, 2011 at 9:30am — 1 Comment

My CH701 fuselage

Has anyone experienced this when joining the 701 rear fuselage to forward cabin? I built the rear fuselage and clecoed the seat back in place to the side vertical channels and uprights per the drawings. All dimensions and squareness checked out right on the money--not even off a milimeter. Same with the forward fuselage. When the seat back z-channel and 7F13-1 gussets were in place an riveted, the seat back no longer fit. In fact, at the z-channel I found the rivet holes through the side… Continue

Added by Don Herbel on November 12, 2009 at 6:44pm — 3 Comments

side windows for CH701

I am considering installing side windows on my CH701 (project in progress). Has anyone out there done this? What shape/size looks and works the best? A former 701 builder friend stated he wished he had done that on his aircraft and offered some suggestions. The windows will be located above the rear baggage floor.

Added by Don Herbel on June 7, 2009 at 11:25am — 2 Comments

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