We have a trio of builders in Titusville, FL, Ed Brennan, Bob Rychel and Les Boatright, who sent a note over about their initial engine test run.  They are using a Lycoming O-235 and recently started her up.  They hope to have the airplane at the Deland Sport Aviation Showcase this November 2-4 2017.  More info on their build can be seen HEREHERE and HERE.

“Friday 6/30/2017

First Engine Start Today!   Lyc O-235 powered Panther LSA, SN-083.
It was just a quick start and run at fast idle for about 30 seconds, just to test basic functionality and look for problems.  No surprises or issues so far!
Today was Day # 168 into our 3-man team build.  We’re REALLY excited to reach this milestone !!
Now off to get ready for our Smilin’ Jack Saturday morning pancake breakfast at X21 . . .
Have a Happy & Safe 4th of July weekend!
Les Boatright
Chapter President, EAA Chapter 866
The Smilin’ Jack Chapter
Titusville, FL”

Here is their update in their chapter news letter:


As most of you know, since the beginning of the year I’ve been working with two other chapter members, your V.P. Ed Brennan, and also Bob Rychel to build a Panther Light Sport Aircraft. One of the great things about building this airplane is the fact that it gives me something else to write about in the monthly chapter newsletter. That reminds me . . . . You other builders out there who have some amazing projects underway, we’d love to read something about your projects too. Tell us how they’re coming along, and send a few pictures. I know there are at least a dozen active builder projects in our chapter right now with at least 3 that are close to being finished. So why not take a moment and send us something for next month’s newsletter. Back to the Panther, our 3-man team has continued to make steady progress on the machine since we started it in January of this year. It seems like the airframe went together very quickly, and then it seemed like things got slower as we’ve spent much of the last two months working on plumbing, wiring, fairings, engine baffles, and many other little details. But it is coming along and we’re working through a punch list of things left to do. Just this past week, we performed the very first power up of the electrical system, tested the radio and transponder, installed the propeller and canopy for flight, and tested the integrity of the fuel system. It’s really exciting to see it coming together! We’ll be ready for some taxi testing before ya know it. So, if you’re at the airport and see something flash by your eye in July, it’s not the “Rocket’s Red Glare”, it just might be a little Red Panther!

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