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What is a Sonex?

I am building a homebuilt airplane called a Sonex-A. I have been working extremely hard to finance this project since August 2016. In April 2017, I purchased a partially completed Sonex. I will still need to buy an engine and am such, working a million odd jobs to earn enough money.
What is a Sonex?

Well first we have to ask, are you talking about Sonex the company, or the Sonex Airplane?
Sonex is an aviation company, based out of wisconsin, that produces airplane kits for builders to make at home. A kit from Sonex includes the plans for making every single part in the plane and how they fit together, most of the hardware you will need (nuts screws bolts) , and a great deal of the material needed. With a kit, you can build realistically build a Sonex airplane in under 2 years in your garage. You are then left needing to buy certain customization items, instrument's, upholstery, and your choice of an engine.

The Sonex-A is a 2 seat, pilot and 1 passenger, small airplane. It is capabl…
Recent posts

Build Update April 5 2018: Dissasembling the Aerovee

The engine I bought was already built, and had not been run. My dad and I planned to take it all apart to give me a better understanding of the engine, as well as to identify any problems before they got bad.

The Arovee engine was heavy and awkward to move. at the time it was sitting on the workbench with everything installed.

Going into this I had only enough sense to tell you which cylinder is the #1, 2, 3, and 4, and I knew some of the terminology, such as crackshaft. I frequently asked my dad "what do you call that part?"  we began unbolting stuff in roughly reverse order from the manual (if you're familiar with sonex plans, you're used to backwards) In under an hour we had stripped many of the external parts off and the engine had lost at least 20 pounds! A box was designated as the hardware box, so it'll be like legos trying to find the right bolts and nuts again when I reassemble it. the important part is that they're all together and not lost. After…

Very loose build update

It is full swing gymnastics meet season, and I'm working extra hard on schoolwork to make up for the time I'm away at gymnastics meets, and I'm building and flying whenever possible. With that all on my plate there is very little time for writing, but I will give a overview of what I've accomplished.

I built the side walls of the forward fuselage:

I have purchased an engine from a fellow sonex builder and member of my EAA chapter (the four cylinder 80HP Aerovee) 

And I have set to work building the Forward Fuselage box

I will flesh out this post in the future as soon as I can, if you are considering going to Sun'n'Fun this year is the best to go, I will be giving an hour talk at the forums all about the unique challenges of being a teen balancing all my various spinning plates, and still making time for aviation and building my plane. I'd love to see you all at Sun'n'Fun! 


(this is a short post, so the list and bottom of page mission stateme…

Life update

I am out of town this week for a gymnastics competition. Here is a video I put together of my last competition.

Also, I will be speaking at Sun'n'Fun 2018! On the first day of sun'n'fun, I will be doing a 1 hour talk about beign a teen and building an airplane. this can be the motivation to come on down to Sun'n'Fun this year! Hope to see you there.

Build Update: The Turtledeck November 2017

First off, what is a turtledeck? The answer is obvious at first, it is a wood platform on the back of the house, with a bunch of turtles sitting on it, right?

Or maybe it is what you call the deck of a cruise ship that is for turtle pleasure?

Well actually it is the round part of the plane behind the cockpit, that leads into the tail, as seen in this beautiful Sonex.

So, now that we know what a turtledeck is, I can get into how I built one!. Like everything, It started with a plans review. The turtledeck skin was made of 2 smaller skins (a left and right) and a central spine of a stiffening C-Channel. The skin then is curved to make it rounded, pretty, and aerodynamic.

I then prepared all the parts. The turtledeck formers were up to the plate first, they look like this:

I made sure that they had no stress rising scratches. (rule of thumb is that if you can catch a fingernail in the scratch, then it is too deep and must be buffed out.) Aside from that I checked them against the plans …

Build Update: Joining the Fuselage October 2017

Riveting the Fuselage side panels was extremely satisfying! After a few day's hard work, I had built up these huge 10' long metal structures! 

 I used cross ties that were akin to the vertical stiffeners. They were a C-shaped channel piece, with a prepilot drilled hole pattern that perfectly matched the spot they went. I clecoed them in place wit ha small cleco, and moved on to the next step.

And of course, once you accomplish something in your kit, don't forget to celebrate!