Porterfield Airplane Club

Keep the Skinny Birds Flying Safely

Steve Sharpe's Blog (11)

G-AFZL in the wars again

ZL suffered another nose over incident at the end of August. This time it was Paul, he forgot to reset the throttle starting the engine after blowing out, resulting in the engine revving up at the next swing and the aircraft nosing over the chocks. Luckily the prop missed Paul, but buried itself in the grass. We sent the engine away for a shockload examination and fitted a new prop. No other damage luckily and she's now signed off again, although the weather has turned damp and cloudy, so…

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Added by Steve Sharpe on October 24, 2017 at 5:31am — 3 Comments

NC25577 on Wikipedia

Today (28 Dec) Porterfield NC25577 appeared on the main page of Wikipedia, as supporting cast in the Ercoupe RATO picture taken at March AFB in 1941. N25577 is listed on the FAA register to a balloon, so what happened to the Porterfield?

ZL flying again with new tailwheel spring and rudder horn - obtained via Ebay from the USA, new old stock.

Added by Steve Sharpe on December 28, 2015 at 6:14am — 2 Comments

Rudder tailwheel steering yoke

Hi everybody

The ongoing saga of G-AFZL - Today the tailwheel spring broke while taxying. Luckily at base, on grass. No collateral damage to the rudder/tailpost or fabric. Trouble is the aluminum yoke for the tailwheel springs is now in 3 pieces. I doubt if it is repairable. Does anybody have, know about, know where we can get a replacement? Looks like we may be grounded again for a while, pity as ZL has been flying very well for the past year since the rebuild and given us no…

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Added by Steve Sharpe on November 20, 2015 at 1:41pm — No Comments

G-AFZL awarded Permit to Fly following rebuild

Good news. Yesterday ZL got its Permit to Fly, so after nearly 19 months we're airborne again. Thanks to everyone who offered advice and assistance during the rebuild. Subject to the usual variable British weather Paul and I can now put on some hours to run the engine in. We had a misfiring problem at idle for a while, caused by failure in one or more of the brand new plugs! Engine now seems to be running smoothly, although with the new exhaust system it does seem a bit noisier than the old…

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Added by Steve Sharpe on January 16, 2015 at 12:51pm — 1 Comment

ZL flies again

CP50/65 G-AFZL has flown again following rebuild, at White Waltham on Monday 27 October. No snags, but a bit of tweaking required. 3 hour's of engine proving is required before Permit renewal test flight. Weight issue still to be resolved.

Added by Steve Sharpe on October 29, 2014 at 4:43am — 2 Comments

Help required - aircraft empty weight

Hi All,

Our CP50/65 G-AFZL is ready to fly following rebuild, trouble is we have a weight problem! It looks like we've gained over 100lbs in empty weight over the factory figure, which will mean that we might only be able to get her certificated as a single seater or have severe restrictions on payload (a good excuse to lose some personal weight maybe).

I find it difficult to see how we could be 100lbs overweight, although I do realise aircraft do gain weight over the…

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Added by Steve Sharpe on October 12, 2014 at 6:04am — 1 Comment

Help requested - rebuild of G-AFZL

Hi everybody.

The rebuild is going OK, fuselage finished, wings repaired and awaiting re-cover. We have a big problem with the engine though. It looks like the old A50 is worn out, cracked crankcase which can be welded, but the cylinders are probably beyond repair.

So I'm looking for a serviceable A or C65, or 4 serviceable C65 cylinders. If anybody knows of one available for sale in usable condition I would be very interested.

Also as we will…

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Added by Steve Sharpe on February 6, 2014 at 9:53am — 1 Comment

Oshkosh 2012

We'll be back this year, staying at the campsite in a RV. Will doubtless be in the bar every evening or at a friends Cessna 180 in the vintage aircraft park. Hope to see a Porterfield this time.  Four of us in the party this time. 

Added by Steve Sharpe on May 20, 2012 at 3:19am — 1 Comment

ZL update Feb 2011

ZL was quite busy in 2010, we made it to lots of fly-ins throughout the south and midlands of England and I did a long trip to Cornwall to visit my son.  ZL performed well all the way through.  Paul and I did Oshkosh, had a great time but we were disappointed that no Porterfields made it, understandable I guess considering the inclement start to the week!  I flew in the B17 and we also managed rides in the Trimotor, a Breezy, Cessna 180, Cub and aeros in an Extra 300.

We've fitted a…

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Added by Steve Sharpe on February 4, 2011 at 12:07pm — 1 Comment

Oshkosh 2010

Anybody off to Oshkosh this year?

Paul and I will be there from 24 July onwards, representing Great Britain (well somebody's got to). We are renting a camper van in Chicago so will be setting up shop on the campsite some time late afternoon on the first Saturday, plan on staying until the following Friday or Saturday, all depends on how saturated with aeroplanes we get. We hope to catch up with some Porterfields and their owners, don't know how we'll meet up though! Will…

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Added by Steve Sharpe on May 27, 2010 at 5:11am — 1 Comment

Fifteen minutes of fame for ZL

The editor of the UK's most popular pilot's mag has been wanting to do a flight test of ZL for some years. Finally this happened in September 2009, the month of ZL's 70th birthday. The photoshoot was "interesting", the camera ship being a locally based Cherokee 6 with the back door removed, with me in the back seat of ZL offering advice. I've added some photos from the sortie and will post the article on the site when I get the pdf from the editor. He was quite complementary about the…

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Added by Steve Sharpe on February 12, 2010 at 3:32am — No Comments

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