Greetings from The Aero Experience Team


The Aero Experience is a celebration of Midwest aviation and aerospace achievement. We invite you to join us as we explore the treasures of Midwest aviation through first-hand experiences. Our contributors take turns flying lead, and we are always looking for new destinations. Check in with The Aero Experience frequently to see where we will land today, and then go out and have your own aero experiences!

Blue skies,

Carmelo Turdo, Mark Nankivil and Fred Harl - The Aero Experience Team

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Ultralight Flyers Gather for Rotax Motor Clinic

By Carmelo Turdo
The Gateway Area Ultralight Association (GAUA) held another technical clinic at St. Louis Downtown Airport this weekend - the topic was the operation and maintenance of the Rotax engine.  The session is a follow up to the very successful carburetor clinic held in January, and signals a resurgence of interest in ultralight flying activity in the St. Louis/Metro East Illinois area.  
The clinic was conducted by Mr. Mark Smith, owner of Tri-State Kite Sales in Mount Vernon, Indiana and experienced builder of ultralight aircraft. Hstarted Tri-State Kite Sales around 1974, selling and flying Delta Wing Kites and Gliders. Mark progressed to Quicksilver Aircraft.  In 1982 Mark was the top selling dealer in the country. He needed to have his own airfield so in 1985 purchased about 30 acres and constructed runways: 5/23 9/27 9W/27W. In 1989 Mark stopped buying kits and completely involved himself in building planes from scratch. He accumulated a metal bender and materials so that all designing and manufacturing could be done by himself. Nearly 10,000 were sold, many models sharing design features of the Quicksilver MX. Changes he made to make the plane fly, steer, handle wind and gusts better.
The clinic covered a wide range of issues relating to Rotax engine operation and maintenance, including oil brands, filters, and clutch options among others.  Many of the over 20 attendees contributed their experiences and lessons learned for the benefit of the group.  Besides the informative clinic, many of the attendees admitted to being lured by donuts for breakfast, chili for lunch and a peak at Bob McDaniel's beautiful Buckeye Breeze powered parachute.

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