It’s Build-A-Plane time at Glasair Aviation’s Customer Assembly Center in Arlington, Washington, and we’re excited to again host the winners of GAMA’s national aviation design/STEM studies challenge.
For two weeks … June 20 through final FAA inspection July 1 … four students from Weyauga-Fremont High (Weyauwega, Wisconsin), their sponsoring teacher and a chaperon will assemble a Glasair Sportsman with staff instruction under the company’s Two Week to Taxi program.
The team is joined by airplane builder/owner Dennis Willows, his daughter and two grandsons.
The B-A-P team this year includes, from left: GAMA CEO Peter Bunce, Jeppeson CEO Mark Van Tine, the Willows family (daughter Grace, father Dennis, grandson Angus), and the winning Challenge team: Derrick Cleaves, Austin Krause, teacher Mike Hansen, Natasha Stemwedel, Logan Feltz and chaperon Jerry Graf.
Assembly got underway in short order early on Monday, June 20. We’re told the students were a little hesitant at first — who wouldn’t be? — but once provided a little direction quickly settled in hands-on.
GA assembly tech Dan Holtz guides Austin Krause in drilling mounting holes for the Sportsman’s elevator bellcrank.
Shaun Hunt explains the nuances of safety wires and fuel pump mounting bolts to Angus and Grace Willows. Grace is less than two weeks away from testing for her private pilot’s certificate.
Logan Feltz gets hands-on bending cotter pins for the permanent installation of cable pulleys inside the fuselage.
Derrick Krause, a sophomore and Build-A-Plane team member from Weyauwega-Fremont High.
Natasha Stemwedel works with lead assembly tech Tyler Mueller to repair a leak in a pitot line. Watching on is Weyauwega-Freemont High teacher Mike Hanson.