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Pilot Reports

power to go twice as fast as the Bonanza.” So why doesn’t LoPresti make many products for the Bonanza? “Firewall back, the Bonanza is a pretty clean airplane,” explains Curt, “we worked on a cowling modification to create more ram air for the intake but we would have had to extend the propeller shaft to create enough room to fair the air intake to see a performance difference.” Curt did say that anything you can do to increase manifold pressure, like clean filters and or ones that are less intrusive, can add speed. 74

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LoPresti does offer a landing light modification kit called “Boom Beam” that covers the existing “hole” on the front of the cowling, making it more streamlined, and it’s a heck of a lot brighter than the stock light. In addition, they offer two exterior finishing products; one is called kNotWax and another called SpeedCoat, an easily applied, slick wax-like sealant that shines up the paint and ads UV protection. I also had to ask about clean airplanes, and, “it’s true; a clean airplane is faster (grinning at the cli-

ché)?” LoPresti sums up our conversation …“First you want your plane rigged correctly, then you want all of the horsepower you’re paying for driving the best prop you can buy, pulling the cleanest airframe you can have through the air.” Curt also confirmed that removing larger antennas in favor for smaller ones can make a difference. “The fuselage is a lifting surface, air moving over the top of the aircraft is going faster, just like with a wing, so if you can move any drag producing objects to beneath the aircraft or further back, you will see a gain.” He goes on to elaborate that the most important foil on the Bonanza is the propeller. “If you didn’t have time to clean anything

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PilotMag-May/June 2010  

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PilotMag-May/June 2010  

Aviation magazine

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