Changed Location April 2016
My wife and I are on the move again, this time to South Australia where my wife has an exciting new position with a new start up company. My trusty Nynja is now hangared at Murray Bridge and we are now in residence in our new home in Mount Barker.
This will give me an excellent opportunity to see parts of this great country which I am only vaguely familiar with and get to meet more people who share my passion for sport flying. Maybe even convince some to join the happy Skyranger/ Nynja community.
In August I flew my Nynja from my base at Watts Bridge, north west of Brisbane to Alice Springs to do the first test flight of another new Nynja. Chris Leisi and his wife Anita took delivery their new Nynja kit in March last year. Chris has been busy building in his limited spare time. Chris and Anita run a successful tour business in Alice Springs and run tours from as far afield as the Kimberleys to Adelaide.
This is the first Nynja built in Australia with the wide body mod which adds another 100mm to the cabin width. It may not seem much but it makes a big difference to the shoulder room.
Chris has done a first class job of his Nynja and should be very proud of his machine.
Maiden flights can at times be a little tricky and it pays to be prepared for anything. This time however it was a just a normal flight and Chris's Nynja flew almost perfectly first time.
He is now happily flying his new aircraft although high season in the tour business has curtailed the flying at the moment.
Congratulations Chris; another builder who now knows the pleasure of flying an areoplane you have built yourself. Other builders will know just what I mean.
Mike Saunders has now completed his new Nynja. Mike and his wife Sandy bought the part finished kit in August last year and Mike has been working on it when he can get time off from his busy job as a Marine Safety Officer. Mike has worked methodically and likes everything to be just perfect, it shows in the finished aircraft.
I flew up to Mackay recently to do the flight test for Mike and can report that if flies just as it should. Mike is now busily burning up fuel and is well past the half way mark of the test flying. At last report everything was just as it should be and Mike is one happy pilot while Sandy is looking forward to her first flight Congratulations Mike and Sandy, well done!
Standard fuel tanks for both the Skyranger and the Nynja are two 30 litre plastic tanks mounted behind the seats. These work very well in Europe where range is not an issue. Here in Australia 60 litres is just not enough if you want to do any serious cross country flying which both aircraft are more than capable of doing.
Over the last 10 years various solutions have been tried including a 90 litre aluminium tank mounted behind the seats. This worked well enough but there were W&B issues which were limiting.
Last year I spent some time on the phone with Phil Prevot the designer and head of Best Off Aircraft. Between us we came up with a workable design. Since then there have been a number of modifications and we now a design we are happy with.
The tanks were installed in my own Nynja in July last year and have performed flawlessly, there now 5 sets of tanks flying with no problems at all.
The welded aluminium tanks give a total of 104 litres and can be fitted with a small header tank mounted behind the seats (optional) which further increases the fuel load .
The advantages of the wing tanks are many;
1. Increased range (more than 5 hours with reserve)
2. There are no longer any W&B issues as the tanks are right on the C of G.
3. Removing the tanks from behind the seats frees up this space for luggage. in fact a some clients have made a light weight luggage bin which incorperates a header tank.
4. Removing the weight of tanks and fuel reduces the load on wing attach points and the fuselage.
5. The tanks can easily be retro fitted to any Skyranger or Nynja.