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Pilot Reports

But that’s not the only quirk of LSA aircraft, they’re also certified using ASTM (American Standards for Testing and Materials) standards. These standards for manufacturing of the LSA are written by the manufacturing industry and accepted by the FAA with the following restrictions to the design of these aircraft:

A maximum of two occupants, a maximum take off weight of 1,320 pounds (seaplanes 1,430 lbs); a 45-knot clean stall speed; a 120-knot top speed at maximum continuous power; a single, non-turbine engine; and fixed landing gear.

SPECIFICATIONS: Construction: metal tapered tip profile SM 701 wing, composite fuselage Engine: Rotax 912 UL or Rotax 912S UL

As I understand it, the ASTM standards allow for common sense engineering and manufacturing of the LSA, such as the Allegro, without the burdensome and expensive process and cost of traditional aircraft certification and manufacturing as required by the FAA. This translates to a lower cost of ownership and operation. And, from what I observed in my preflight inspection with the Allegro, the quality of the workmanship was top-notch!

Fuel tank: 17 gal Propeller: 3-blade WOODCOMP Wing span: 35 ft 5 in Wing area: 122 sq ft Overall length: 20 ft 10 in Overall height: 6 ft 9 in

The cockpit is designed very nicely for two people. It was roomy, had some storage space behind the seats, and the visibility was superb through the front, to the sides, and below. Ground steering was via nose wheel steering and allowed for very tight turns.

Gliding quality: 1:12

The cockpit was laid out simply and logically, and like most aircraft available today, a glass cockpit option is available featuring the Dynon EFIS D-100. The control stick was in between the pilots and had an optional extension to make it easier for a right seat instructor pilot to demonstrate maneuvers with either their left or right hand.

Load limit factors: +4.0/-2.0 G

The Allegro surprised me with its quick and short takeoff roll and climb performance - almost 1000 feet per minute from the Sanford airport.

Stall speed (with flaps): 40 mph

The Allegro’s flying qualities were the biggest surprise for me. Simple coordinated turns were certainly not as trivial as those I do daily in a fast mover jet. That is, each displacement of the aileron to start and maintain a turn required thoughtful and deliberate rudder. For initial pilot training, I believe that the simple skill of proficiency in coordinated turns will pay big dividends in safety for pilots in LSA and general aviation aircraft. My instructor pilot, Ross Kennedy, explained that LSA students are taught from the start of training how

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M AY / J U N E 2 0 1 0

Maximum T.O. weight: 1320 lb Basic empty weight: 622 lbs. with Rotax 912 UL, 628 lbs. with Rotax 912 UL-S

PERFORMANCE (with Rotax 912 engine): Max speed: 137 mph Stall speed (with flaps): 40 mp

Cruise speed 75% power: 120 mph Rate of climb: 1000 ft/min Max. range: 350 miles Takeoff run: 490 ft Takeoff to clear 50 ft: 820 ft Landing run: 340 ft Landing over 50 ft obstacle: 721 ft

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PilotMag-May/June 2010  

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PilotMag-May/June 2010  

Aviation magazine

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