January- February and March 2018 newsletter

HAWK Logo Hawk-16s High-Country Aviation Workshop for Kids Mack, COand   EAA chapter 800

HAWK and EAA chapter 800 are separate organizations that work hand in hand to get and keep the kids interested in aviation careers.

This newsletter was delayed because of numerous exciting things happening with both organizations that carried over in to March. I will start with the March happenings then back up to January.

Braden is now a Private Pilot
He passed his check ride with flying colors. Braden is HAWK’s first official in-house trained pilot. There will be more pilots shortly.

Sterling H-HAWK’s CFII was invited to attend the AOPA Bob Hoover awards ceremony in Washington DC. Sterling was fortunate enough to sit at the table with Mr Vangrunsven and his wife. (yes the VAN’s aircraft owner that has over 10,000 airplanes flying and another 4000 plus in construction). Sterling had a really good time and really represented HAWK. Sterling was fortunate enough to rub elbows with all the VIP’s in aviation- lucky guy!.

JF and Rlee loading kids for helicopter flights. Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
JF and Rlee loading kids for helicopter flights.
Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
J F and his wife Rlee brought their personal Eurocopter AS350B2 helicopter to the EAA Chapter 800 March monthly meeting at MACK and flew 15 of the HAWK and EAA 800 kids and also flew 5 HAWK mentors. A Eurocopter AS350B2 is not inexpensive to operate, it was a real treat for the kids. J F flew 5 kids at a time for about 15 minutes and the ones lucky enough to get the co-pilot’s seat actually got to fly the helicopter. Braden, Krista, Kaitlin, Shay (a HAWK mentor) all got helicopter control experience. HAWK could really use a Donated Helicopter as the kids are hooked. If anyone happens to have one just sitting around?

Programs like bringing a Helicopter to an EAA meeting really helps keep the kids interested. Jake M(15) talked about his hot air balloon instruction at the meeting and how excited he is to be able to start feeling like he can fly it. He is getting good and should be able to get his Private pilot’s license this summer when he turns 16. He is getting close to doing his solo flights and has his Student Pilot’s license. A little more instruction and he will be ready to solo – he just needs to get his written test out of the way. One big problem in Ballooning is the lack of Designated Examiners. There are not any balloon Designated Examiners in Colorado and the only ones are in most of the west Utah and New Mexico. It seems that there is getting to be a lack of Designated Examiners in all phases of General Aviation.

The EAA chapter meeting also dealt with figuring out how the EAA Chapter 800 and HAWK trip to Oshkosh will be handled; what kids are going and who will be mentors to oversee the kids. Another discussion concern’s the funding and logistics for the trip. This will be the third trip for the organizations. The kids are lining up to go and are really excited.

The next topic was the MAY 18-20, 2018 Mack Fat Tire Jamboree. EAA Chapter 800 with HAWK’s help is feeding the attendees and their solicited help at the chapter meeting. Anyone wanting to help please contact EAA 800 president Kim Neibauer or Ken and Jerry Hurt. The Jamboree is always interesting. Mack has free camping and airplane parking areas on a nice manicured grass area. Plus there is an evening bonfire and other goings on during the event. Bring your airplane and come play or if you do not have an airplane still come enjoy the festivities. (I would bet J F could easily win the short takeoff and landing competition).

Now the HAWK Happenings
As mentioned above Braden’s work has paid off he is now an official pilot! He is HAWK’s first in-house trained pilot. He is starting his next rating – his instrument rating plus his Hot Air Balloon rating. (Braden turned 17 in January).
Logan has now soloed in the family 172 and is working on his hours for his Private. He turns 17 in August and should be ready for his Private about the same time.
Jake and Christa should have their Hot Air Balloon private’s before years end.

The Kids are learning!

Braden with the completed Piper, Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
Braden with the completed Piper, Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
The Cherokee flies instruction regularly.

Braden took his checkride with Lynn French the Designated Examiner. He chose to give him the test in the HAWK Cherokee. So far, Braden seems to finally be in harmony with the weather gods. Braden plans and the weather turns on him. Lynn French issued Braden one of the last paper student pilot certificates before the IACRA program went into effect. So far, thanks to generous donations of cash, airplanes and other items the HAWK kids can afford to fly the Cherokee for nearly free as long as they work in the shop and earn their time. Five hours in the shop gets them one hour plus $10.00 for insurance for flight time in the Cherokee. Braden is the caretaker of the Cherokee and rounds up the younger HAWK kids to clean it, keep it nice and shiney and now he can fly them. Sterling is the mentor and instructor in the Cherokee. Jerry F is the AP/AI that keeps the maintenance current.

Jake, William M, Kaitlin A, and Mark installing the Rotex engine on the donated Zenith 701 Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
Jake, William M, Kaitlin A, and Mark installing the Rotex engine on the donated Zenith 701
Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
HAWK’s January and February consisted of working on the Zenith 701. The 701 was moved into the heated build hanger and the wings are temporarily installed. The engine mount and engine are installed and now all the logistics of where to mount oil coolers and the new Zenith factory radiator is in process. The airplane was weighed (583 pounds) as it sits nearly complete- only the cowl and a few small parts were missing. It looks like it will be around 625 pounds when completed. It should really perform as light as it is. The Pega Daedalus wings make putting the airplane together interesting- they are totally different than the Zenair wings- longer with a different airfoil and with slide out slats. Pat and the 701 kids are doing a very nice job on the airplane. Tim Allen and his daughter Kaitlin made Carbon Fiber wing root fairings to fair the wings into the fuselage. They look awesome! Tim plans on making a Carbon Fiber cowl to help keep the weight down. Hal Stockman with Zipper Big Bore donated his time to check out the 912 Rotex going into the airplane. Hal purchased the pusher Rotex 912 exhaust that did not fit on the 701. Zenith is making the correct exhaust for the 701. The Zenith 701 is turning into a really nice airplane. Hopefully the 701 it will make Oshkosh 2018- that is the goal. 90 percent done 90 percent left to go. The crew working on the 701 primarily consists of Kaitlin, William M, William A, Collin, and Jake, with mentor’s Pat W and Tim A overseeing the project.

HAWK President Brian Miller with donated 1955 Beech F35
HAWK President Brian Miller with donated 1955 Beech F35
The F35 bonanza donated by the Lovelace’s was evaluated after the donation became official in January. The airplane looked good and the leather interior was really nice. Once we got past the pretty there were numerous issues that needed fixed due to years of sitting, potentially costing a lot of money. (Airplanes do not do well with non use especially if left outside to the elements – they are made to be used). The radios were old and out of date. The big item was the propeller. It had a big AD on it and after chatting with propeller shops it was determined that the HAWK piggy bank was not near big enough to handle the estimated cost to just do the AD, much less do the rest of the needed repairs. To comply with the propeller AD alone the cost could be from minimum of $4,000 just to comply if everything was Ok to as high as $14,000.00 if the blades were bad. A friend with the same prop just spent $8,000 to get his propeller updated to do away with the AD (the AD is due every 5 years unless updated). HAWK CFII Sterling flew N3815B a lot in the past and said the airplane would not work to train the kids. The kids could not get complex airplane time because it had a throw over yoke and no brakes on the passenger side. Using it for instruction was out. The cost to get it flying was extreme. The fact the airplane only has a value of around $35,000 in real good shape made the cost of repair prohibitive. HAWK had two offers for the airplane and the members decided in a special meeting to accept one of the offers rather than take the risk of fixing it and marketing it with HAWK’s limited funds.. The Items that needed fixed were items that the kids could not do in house, so from an educational standpoint it was not a good investment. The airplane now has a good new home with someone repairing it to use it as their personal airplane. (HAWK was not going to let it be scrapped). And HAWK has a few more dollars in its account. Again thank you Mr and Mrs Lovelace.

Ron Huddleston and his wife Gail with the Arion Lightening Ron built.
Ron Huddleston and his wife Gail with the Arion Lightening Ron built.
Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
HAWK member Ron Huddleston and his wife were so impressed with how the members of HAWK handled N3815B and that the HAWK group wanted to see it continue to fly rather than scrap the airplane they decided to donate their airplane to the program. In February the Huddleston family donated the 2014 Arion Lightning that Ron built to HAWK. (Actually it is a Huddleston Lightening on the registration). The airplane needed a condition inspection and some minor work which the kids can help with. By HAWK doing the work to get it in the air. With Ron’s blessing the plan is for the airplane to be available for sale at Oshkosh 2018 with the funds going to educate the HAWK youth in aviation. Ron Flew P2V Neptunes off aircraft carriers and is a retired from United Airlines and is aware that most kids can not afford to fly due to today’s costs. He is a HAWK member and is doing his part to get kids into aviation. Ron donated the funds to do the Cherokee interior and really believes in kids being the future of general aviation. Thanks Ron and Gayle for your support. Jerry F is currently doing the condition inspection with any kids he can steal from other projects to help.

HAWK's Hot air Balloon in Tethered Flight.
HAWK’s Hot air Balloon in Tethered Flight.
The balloon is flying regularly and several HAWK kids should have their private certificates by the end of 2018. The chosen kids can fly it at no expense to them. (totally free including fuel and instructor) The program is like an aviation scholarship for the chosen HAWK kids that will be old enough to get their Private Pilots certificates within a year or add it as a type rating. The kids can solo it at 14 and get their private at 16 years old. The kids chosen to fly the balloon must crew it, work in the HAWK shop regularly and must attend the free HAWK ground schools each month. Currently Jake M, Christa, Braden, are working on their Private pilots license. Michelle H is the mentor and Eddie C is maintenance and instructor. William M got HAWK’s second inflator fan running. William is also turning into HAWKS engine mechanic and is currently repairing a 20 hp John Deere lawn mower motor that HAWK will sell for operating funds. ( I will say going through the IACRA program to become a recommending instructor was enough to drive a grown man crazy.) Without Sterlings help I would have given up. With Sterling’s help and after 2.5 hrs of trying to get my address recognized I became a Recommending Instructor- what a pain! Seems the records show my home address as a business since I use it to repair balloons and IACRA will not take a business address. Thanks to Sterling my official address for IACRA is now 5 miles SW of Fruita- go figure)?.

The HAWK 172 is being reskinned due to the hail damage to all the top surfaces. The wing is in the Cessna wing Jig and is being taken apart. Solomon B is removing the damaged firewall. Christa and Collin have removed the tail and are currently reskinning the wing and control surfaces. Collin, Solomon and Logan are the crew working on it with Shay and Eddie as the mentors. This is a big project and will be years in the making but will make an exceptional 172.

Ryan with completed toolbox
Ryan with completed toolbox
The Tool Box Program
This program really shows the kids how to do aircraft type sheet metal work. And is very active. There are about 20 boxes in various stages of construction plus more than 10 finished. Tristan, Ryan, his brother , and Collin are doing a very good job on their boxes and should progress to aircraft work shortly. Collin is working on the 172 mentored by Christa.

The Kids: Christa, Jadin, Lyle's Ryan, and mentor Shay doing a gore by gore inspection on Lyles hot air balloon. Shay's 172 is the one with the cowl covered. Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
The Kids: Christa, Jadin, Lyle’s son Ryan, and mentor Shay doing a gore by gore inspection on Lyle’s hot air balloon. Shay’s 172 is the one with the cowl covered.
Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
Lyle Bingham HAWK’s web guru brought his balloon over from Utah to get it annualed and to attend the HAWK board and members meeting February 10th 2018. After the HAWK meetings his balloon was inspected by HAWK’s balloon inspector with the help of the HAWK kids and returned to service after a few minor repairs- most problems found by young eyes. While at Mack, Lyle made a nice donation to HAWK that was matched by the little company he works for called Dell (Yep that computer company). Seems they support what their employees donate to nonprofits with a special program of matching funds. HAWK is really fortunate to have someone of Lyle’s caliber donating their valuable time to make the HAWK program work. Braden works with Lyle and maintains the web site with Lyle. Braden is also getting his Solidworks certification and teaches kids Solidworks at his High School.

Watch for Beth Stanton’s article on the HAWK program in the MAY 2018 issue of Sport Aviation- it should be interesting.

HAWK is growing rapidly!

HAWK and EAA Chapter 800 news November – December 2017

HAWK Logo Hawk-16s High Country Aviation Workshop for Kids Mack, CO
High Country Aviation Workshop for Kids
HAWKaviators.org, Mack, CO
2017 is now history!
2018 Has arrived!

The new year offers a new adventures for the HAWK and EAA 800 kids.

HAWK continues to grow and the end of 2017 was definitely interesting. The November EAA meeting featured a talk by an IAC judge DJ Molny. His talk with video was about how scoring of the aerobatic flights in the aerobatic box is accomplished. It was really interesting and boy does it require a sharp eye. Anyone that missed it sure missed a good presentation.

The December EAA meeting was the annual EAA lunch and was again, like last year, held at the El Tapatio Restaurant. It was a social gathering and an awards presentation. All the officer’s got pins and a certificate. Sterling got a second one for Information officer and Steve Linderman for Web officer. Ken and Jeri’s was for MVP. Ken and Jeri Hurt were given the award for most valuable EAA 800 2017 player because the Hurts coordinated the Young eagles flights and also ran several fund raising projects, plus they do lunch at every EAA meeting..

Piper Cherokee N9606W Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
Piper Cherokee N9606W
Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
The Cherokee annual became due January 1st 2018. The annual was started over the Holidays in December and turned into a real rodeo, and prevented Braden from taking his Private checkride on his birthday in January. (He scored 92 on the written- not bad considering he is the first person to take the private pilot written after attending HAWK ground School). Several AD’s were due and required the airplane to be shut down for longer than planned. The AD on the Control Yoke inspection revealed a crack on the LH yoke. This seemed like a minor problem. Wrong! Seems this is a common Cherokee problem on the older plastic yokes. A used yoke was located but after getting it shipped in during the Holidays on inspection also was determined to be cracked. New replacement yokes do not exist. The Piper Factory tech rep was a good help and finally led to a good used yoke in an aircraft salvage yard. (The piper Tech was very professional and helped with several AD’s on our aircraft). Unfortunately the used yoke found is still a plastic yoke and the AD still Applies. It will get the airplane flying until a better yoke is found. Braden is designing a new aluminum yoke in Solidworks and the FAA has agreed to work on getting it field approved as they are well aware of the problem. Braden was exposed to solid works in a class at HAWK run by Jeff Goodrich of RADCAD design. Braden then worked with Jeff after hours. Apparently Braden is the Solidworks tech at his High school and is set up to test shortly to become Solidworks certified. Braden has a miniature example of the yoke he designed printed on a 3D printer. The kids are learning.

All this rodeo caused Braden to not be able to complete his private on his birthday. He was ready but the airplane was not. The other AD that was due is somewhat easier but required some disassembly of the aircraft. This AD affects the balance weight tube for the elevator and after talking to the Piper tech it was determined the HAWK Cherokee has the tube the AD applies to. The Piper Service Letter and the AD do not offer any indication as to what tube is in Cherokees.

Kids rigging the HAWK Balloon for flight. Braden inflated it this time. He is working on a balloon rating with several other kids including Krista who is looking at the camera. Caden, Jake and William received instruction after each landing and kid change. Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
Kids rigging the HAWK Balloon for flight. Braden inflated it this time.
He is working on a balloon rating with several other kids including Krista who is looking at the camera. Caden, Jake and William received instruction after each landing and kid change.
Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
After talking to the Piper tech it gets down to the color of the ears where the elevator cables attach.. The non AD tube has Green ears and also has a wall thickness of .120. HAWK’s tube is .090 thick and did not have green ears. This requires removal every 2 years for a magnaflux or dye check inspection of the bolt holes where the tube attaches to the Stabilizer. Ours passed crack inspection. Piper does make a new tube that does away with this AD- just requires money to acquire one. The Cherokee was detailed by the kids while all this was going on. The airplane will fly again in 2018 and Braden will finish his private pilot’s license.

Picture of the HAWK balloon in flight with kids at the burner. Picture taken by Randy Owens out of his Zenith 701 Courtesy Randy Owens, Photographer
Picture of the HAWK balloon in flight with kids at the burner. Picture taken by Randy Owens out of his Zenith 701
Courtesy Randy Owens, Photographer
The HAWK Balloon is flying regularly and kids are building time. The balloon has flown over 10 hrs of kid instruction in December. And lots of kids are getting burner time. N90555 the HAWK balloon flies extremely well. It will fly over 3 hours on 30 gallons of propane. Not bad for an old recoated balloon. Hopefully by summer several kids will be private balloon pilots.

The HAWK builds

HAWK kids attending a typical Ground school- this one is on weather. They even attend when the Classroom has not warmed up. Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
HAWK kids attending a typical Ground school- this one is on weather.
They even attend when the Classroom has not warmed up.
Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
HAWK kids worked on drilling rivets out of the hail damaged control surfaces of the 172. And are doing an awesome job. The kids learned a lot building tool boxes. Now they are using what they learned on airplanes. As soon as funds are available new skins will be ordered..

The Zenith 701 is progressing nicely. Pat W. and his group of kids are doing an awesome job and hopefully it will fly this summer. The tail is back on and all the controls work. Even in the correct direction. The wings are nearly finished and are about ready to install. Tim Allen, our newest mentor, built an engine mount for the Rotex 912 per Zenith plans and it looks like factory. Lane and Cindy J donated the 4130 tubing to make the mount. THANKS Lane and Cindy. Tim owns Bulldog Machine and does very high end work on zip lines and other technical projects. He put the paper engine mount plans for the mount into Solidworks and then machined all the joints to fit perfectly. Tim’s dad, Bill Allen, built lots of airplanes including gyrocopters and founded a gyro Company in Utah called Hawk. Small world that they had the same name as ours but no connection. Bill was a true craftsman. Seems Bill passed his talent to his boys. HAWK is really excited about Tim joining us. Watch for more exciting things out of HAWK due to Tim – Tim has some unique ideas for HAWK kids and worked with kids on Darpa competitions in the past. HAWK is very lucky to have a person like Tim involved.

The Donated Bonanza F35 is now officially HAWK’s and the paperwork is on the way to Oklahoma. The airplane is going to be moved into the build Hanger to start an Annual. Hopefully it will not require too much. We do know the prop has a major AD on it. Hopefully it will be good. It will have to be sent to a prop shop and probably will be the last item done as it is not cheap to do. We will see how the airplane checks out. At least the airplane was donated and anything made off it will help HAWK. HAWK’s plan is to sell it for operating capital. So if anyone wants a nice Bonanza get in line? HAWK has a tentative sale depending on the annual results.

One of HAWK’s mentors Russell Franke is working to get gliders going in HAWK. He has purchased 2 Schweizer 2-22’s and a flyable PA-25 Pawnee plus 2 Cal Air tow planes that need a little work. I have a schweizer 2-33 that needs some minor work and HAWK is working with several CFIG glider instructors and tow plane pilots to get them involved with HAWK. This summer should be interesting at Mack with powered airplanes, gliders, and balloons. We will be busy teaching kids. Time will tell!

Jake smiling with the Jr Service League plaque. Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
Jake smiling with the Jr Service League plaque.
Courtesy Eddie Clements, Photographer
HAWK is really becoming known. The Grand Junction Jr Service League, a non profit that works with educational non profits, donated $1000.00 to the HAWK program to help finish the 701. This was Brian M’s project and I am sure this is only a start with them. They are really impressed with what HAWK is doing..

Watch for a full article about EAA 800 and HAWK in Sport Aviation in the next few months.

Beth E. Stanton is working on an article and the article may be out before my next HAWK update. Beth stopped by the HAWK Cherokee at Oshkosh 2017 and talked with the kids. HAWK is very fortunate to have someone of Beth’s caliber doing an article about the HAWK program.

HAWK and EAA 800 continue to make flight possible and affordable for kids.

Go to hawkaviators.org to keep up with HAWK happenings.

As always, thanks to everyone that makes HAWK viable. The list is getting long.

It is sure fun watching the kids grow up in HAWK.

Merry Christmas from HAWK

2017 Christmas Header High Country Aviation Workshop for Kids Mack, CO

HAWK Logo Hawk-16s High Country Aviation Workshop for Kids Mack, CO

Thanks for everyone’s support. 2017 has been an exceptional year at 10CO (Mack Mesa Airport). The HAWK youth are learning about all forms of aviation because of HAWK’s Dedicated Mentors and Donors, who donate their Time, Money, and Expertise
The list is long!

HAWK’s Hot Air Balloon

Hot Air Balloon

       Recently HAWK began work on our firefly hot air balloon N90555. Upon donation the envelope was found to be porous and not flightworthy. Slowly HAWK was donated a basket and then another along with fuel lines and tanks until we had all of the pieces necessary to put together our balloon. However with these parts the problem of the porous fabric remained but never fear HAWK was given new balloon coating from firefly to be applied to the inside of HAWK’s balloon.

Coating the hot air balloon
Caleb, Abarim, Michelle, Eddie and Braden coating the hot air balloon.

The entire inside of the balloon had to be coated in the latex based clear coating that was sprayed on and rolled in taking four days to paint over 70000 square feet of fabric until on the evening of day four when HAWK members left the balloon and the balloon was stood up in Fruita’s Reed Park.

Reed Park balloon glow
Reed Park balloon glow

One week from completion the skirt was replaced with a non-flammable version and the final fuel system, freshly rebuilt, was certified finishing the annual inspection and legalizing flight. HAWK’s newest addition to our flying fleet will be providing instruction shortly and the majority of the flight costs for at least the first few months will be donated by Mr. Eddie Clements

Tethered Flight
HAWK’s Hot air Balloon in Tethered Flight.

September-October HAWK and EAA800 happenings.

The HAWK airplanes: Backdrops at Veta & Adam's wedding © Eddie Clements, Photographer
The HAWK airplanes:
Backdrops at Veta & Adam’s wedding
© Eddie Clements, Photographer
The past two months have had the HAWK and EAA kids very busy. The kids prepared the two flying HAWK airplanes to partake as a backdrop in a wedding in the large hangar at MACK October 7th. The WestStar employee who designed the Paint Scheme on the Cherokee – Vita married her fiance Adam and requested her work be displayed as a backdrop for the wedding.

The next weekend October 14th EAA Chapter 800 scheduled a young eagles flight day to introduce kids to aviation. By the end of the day 21 kids had experienced airplanes for the first time, thanks to the following pilots- Sterling Hurst and Kim Neibauer flew the Cherokee, Pat Wehling flew the Dakota Hawk. Randy Owens flew his Zenith 701, And Alfred Gabelli flew his 172.

October 15 was the EAA chapter 800 meeting. After the EAA 800 lunch, the HAWK airplanes were used to fly the WestStar employees and kids that were responsible for the awesome paint job on the Cherokee. (Some of the employees could not make the date so another weekend will be scheduled for them). Ladd the 10CO airport manager did an awesome presentation about his brother-in-law. Randy Bresnik – The commander of the international
Space station- go to NASA TV and watch The crew in action. Ladds wife Ronnie presented HAWK and EAA 800 pictures and posters of Randy and the station crew- hopefully we can get some of the crew to sign them. Shay B did an awesome job framing them for display. Seems Aviation runs deep in the 10CO family. GOOGLE Randy Bresnik – it is very interesting.

The airshow display managed by HAWK kids © Eddie Clements, Photographer
The airshow display managed by HAWK kids
© Eddie Clements, Photographer
October 21-22 the Hawk and EAA chapter 800 Kids with the help of HAWK mentors took turns displaying both HAWK airplanes and the FIREFLY donated balloon basket and various aircraft parts and tool boxes they made at the Grand Junction Airshow. Saturday the weather gods caused the show to be cancelled about halfway through the show. It was a real rodeo getting the airplanes put away and the display stored before high winds and rain arrived. A hangar was located for the Dakota Hawk and the Cherokee was tied down with heavy weights. Sunday the weather was perfect and the show went on. The Blue Angels did their excellent job of closing the show. GJ Air Show Promo

Copper State Air Show in Mesa Arizona was the next weekend (October 27-28). Kim and Braden Flew the Cherokee to the show. Sterling Drove his Car down as he had friends to visit around the area. While at Copper State Sterling signed Braden off to do his solo cross country back to Grand junction regional, then back to Mack with stops in Winslow AZ for Fuel and again in Blanding Utah. All went well until Braden was just past Kayenta AZ and the engine decided to run Rough. Braden found himself in his first real aviation problem. After trying everything to clear the engine he made a good decision and deviated to Kayenta and landed. He could not get the engine to clear so Sterling, Nancy, and Kim picked him up and he returned Home by auto. Wouldn’t you know it – all the HAWK Mentor airplanes were down for annuals. Rather than drive for 10 hours to rescue the airplane The Mange Mooney was put back together and the annual finished by the crew. Eddie, Sterling, and Jerry F flew to Kayenta and the Cherokee decided to run properly, ( that’s why Jerry F was involved seems like he has a magic touch with fixing airplanes- they just work when he is around). Sterling flew it back to Mack. The general consensus was Carb Ice. Braden tried Carb Heat but not being familiar with how an engine runs rougher until it clears he made the correct decision and landed- another lesson learned. Other than a failed solo cross country everything turned out OK. excitement over. The oil was changed and the oil filter was cut open on the Cherokee and nothing was found to indicate a problem. The Cherokee is still flying kids for instruction regularly.

The builds

HAWK kids coating the balloon envelope © Eddie Clements, Photographer
HAWK kids coating the balloon envelope © Eddie Clements, Photographer
Numerous attempts were made to try to coat the HAWK balloon N90555 (Donated by Kent Barns and Thayne Peterson) all summer and all ended up being days to watch the wind blow. It seems like the wind gods waited until the balloon was out of the bag and then decided to blow just hard enough to make it impossible to inflate it to coat it. I will say coating a hot air balloon is a job.
HAWK kids packing the balloon envelope © Eddie Clements, Photographer
HAWK kids packing the balloon envelope
© Eddie Clements, Photographer
Imagine trying to paint a building inside that is 55 feet high and 70 feet long in an earthquake? After it is coated, then it will have to be annualed, and enough money found for liability insurance. Thanks FIREFLY Balloons for donating the 4.0 balloon Basket and special Firefly factory balloon coating. It is expensive.

Christa and her competed tool box. © Eddie Clements, Photographer
Christa and her competed tool box.
© Eddie Clements, Photographer
The tool box program is busy. Caiden and Christa finished their tool boxes and several more are close to finish. So far, 10 have been finished and there are over 20 more under construction. The kids really learn aircraft construction by measuring, cutting, forming and riveting the toolboxes using aluminum and aircraft construction techniques per AC43-13.

The Zenith 701 has been moving forward thanks to Pat W’s leadership. The kids Jaden, William, and Jake have installed the tail and are hooking up the controls. The small AN140-8S and AN130-8S turnbuckles are in the process of being replaced with 22S turnbuckles per the Zenith plans. The replacement turnbuckles were ordered from Zenith. Zenith aircraft has really worked with HAWK on the project.

HAL Stockman with Zipper Big Bore completely went through the prop drive gear box assembly for the Rotax 912 that will power the Zenith 701. Nothing was found to be out of order. Hal donated his very limited time to do the disassembly and check out on the drive. He also installed new parts at no cost to HAWK. Plus, he returned it from Reno-freight paid. Thanks HAL!

HAWK is trying to find a Zenith engine mount for the 912 installation on the 701. If anyone has one, let us know. The fuel tanks were modified by Sonic, welding ½ inch NPT outlets on the back of the tanks, and the fuel system is slowly coming together. Once the fuel tanks are installed in the wings, the wings will go on the airplane.

The Cessna 172 is scattered all over the shop and the kids are progressing with the rebuild. Solomon (age 12) has done an awesome job so far drilling the wrinkled firewall off. He has the firewall doubler off and there are not any elongated holes. He is very careful and drills the rivet heads off with a smaller bit, then the correct size bit. Then he carefully punches the hulls out. He is better than a lot of seasoned mechanics. He is impressive, and he asks questions if things are not working correctly. His tool box was flawless.

William and Caiden under Michele’s direction preparing the 172 wing to go in the wing jig. Also note the Zenith 701 in the background. © Eddie Clements, Photographer
William and Caiden under Michele’s direction preparing the 172 wing to go in the wing jig. Also note the Zenith 701 in the background.
© Eddie Clements, Photographer
Braden and Jake are re-skinning the flaps. The wing is in the wing jig and drilling the hail damaged skins off is next. This is a project for Christa, our 14 year old girl, Jake, William, Logan, Braden and any other kid that has finished their tool box properly.


William has started his formal flight training, Braden is working hard to get his Private in January when he turns 17. He just has a few minor flying items to finish, like his nighttime flights, as Mack is not lighted. Logan is working hard toward his solo and is building flying time in his mom’s 172 (Shay is a rusty pilot who got back into aviation by buying an airplane because of HAWK, not to mention her love of aviation.) Logan spends Saturdays, mostly working under HAWK supervision, on his mom’s 172. Jake is waiting for his dad to get his instructor’s rating. Then have him train him in the HAWK airplanes.

Brian (Jake’s dad) and HAWK’s president is currently getting his commercial and instructor ratings on the GI bill through Colorado Mesa University. He obtained his instrument rating last year under the GI bill and should be finished with his instructor’s rating this spring. (He is another rusty pilot who got back into aviation due to HAWK). He plans on being another HAWK CFI.

The Balloon flying will have a large effect on how the younger kids get private pilots licences. They can solo it at 14 and get their private at 16. Then everything else will be type ratings. This winter, it should be very busy as the kids will be able to fly it at no cost as long as they work in the shop, In the Grand Valley we can fly balloons anytime during the day as we get inversions and the air stays very stable in December and January. HAWK has managed to put together a really good balloon system at absolutely no cost to HAWK, just lots of work. The kids major expense will be a FAA private written and check ride.

Due to the number of kids wanting to join HAWK, HAWK has been forced to put together a waiting list and select the kids who are genuinely interested in aviation. HAWK does not lack for projects. The reason for the list is the lack of room to work and mentors. On any Saturday there are airplanes flying, toolboxes under construction, numerous airplanes in various stages of construction or repair. HAWK is a beehive of activity. All new HAWK kids get a young eagles ride in one of HAWK’s airplanes sponsored by EAA chapter 800. HAWK gets regular requests from parents wanting to get their kids an airplane ride. And HAWK and EAA chapter 800 work to accommodate them weather and pilots permitting.

The only time the kids slow down is for lunch. (Lunch is provided by John C) and has turned into a major project. Every Saturday John manages to feed a lot of kids and adults. A big thank you John from HAWK. No one goes hungry. John is also HAWK’s rainmaker. He is an expert at listing and selling donated items to keep HAWK’s cash flowing. Keep the donations coming so we can keep John busy. HAWK only exists because of donations of almost anything of value. Money is still the most important donation! HAWK really likes airplane donations. So if you have or know of an airplane available for donation let HAWK know.

The end of the year is approaching rapidly. If you have to pay Uncle Sam, consider a donation to HAWK. It is good for a tax write off, going to the education of youth about aviation. HAWK is a 501(c)3 educational non-profit. All funds go directly to the program. No one is compensated for their time. Every mentor’s time is also donated.

Go to hawkaviators.org website to see what is happening at HAWK
Any donations can be made through the website or by responding to this e-mail.

HAWK and EAA chapter 800 monthly schedule.

  • The 1st Saturday of the month is a project work day for HAWK from 10 AM until?
  • The 2nd Saturday is ground School in the morning 10AM to lunch then work on projects.
  • The 3rd Saturday is the EAA 800 chapter meeting 10-noon then lunch provided by EAA chapter 800 and the Ken Hurt family. Then its to the HAWK workshops for work on projects.
  • The 4th Saturday is again ground School in the morning, lunch then projects are worked on.

    Anyone is welcome at the EAA chapter 800 meeting or a tour of the HAWK program.