My experience in the TWTT program was a very positive one. I not only built a great airplane that allows me to travel cross country with a very generous payload, but the education gained throughout the build process has been invaluable. I now feel much more knowledgeable about the construction and inner workings of the plane than I ever did with rental aircraft. I can’t thank the forward thinkers at Glasair enough for coming up with the TWTT idea years ago. I hope the program continues and flourishes for many years to come. I would highly recommend the experience.
Rhea & Russell Sherwood
My husband Russell and I built a Glasair I RG and we love it. When I sold my 1968 Mooney, we decided the replacement should be another experimental aircraft. I wanted a four-place airplane, so being partial to Glasair, the Sportsman was the perfect choice for us. Although there were challenges during the Two Weeks To Taxi build, Glasair was committed to making sure my Sportsman was the best it could be. The build was a great learning experience, and now with my repairman certificate I will undoubtedly continue to learn for years to come. We are both enjoying flying her and love the amazing glass cockpit, and find the Sportsman is always eager to depart and take to the sky. Since we live at an airpark, it is a dream come true to get up each day to find our Glasairs just waiting for us to go flying.
I got very lucky. We built our dream Sportsman in the Two Weeks to Taxi program with a Wisconsin high school team of four skillful students who had won the General Aviation Manufacturers Association Build-A-Plane contest. (It was a win-win for us all.) Plus, my daughter and two grandsons helped. We had great fun, learned a lot, and had a never-to-be-forgotten experience. If I won the lottery, I’d do it again annually.
GAMA CEO Pete Bunce
“The team at Glasair Aviation was truly exceptional during the build,” General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) President and CEO Pete Bunce said. “They served as wonderful teachers and mentors to the kids throughout the entire two weeks as they started each day with an instructional class and then patiently guided them through each step of the build process. The Glasair staff’s enthusiasm towards working with the students was evident throughout, as was their tremendous work ethic during each very long day of the build. I could not have asked for a better experience.”
Editor’s note: In the interim since the GAMA Sportsman was built, the airplane has been refitted with a Ballistic Recovery System whole-plane parachute system. Pete has shared his thinking on the matter, and we add it here.
“Our Sportsman was built for flying rugged backcountry. Aviating in the mountains, often at low altitudes, can put suitable emergency landing surfaces out of reach. Our BRS parachute system provides a safety option when no other may exist. The install work performed by the Glasair team was truly superb.”
Retired Jeppeson CEO, Mark Van Tine
“The best day of flying, in my entire flying career!”
“I’m nearing the 100 hour mark on my Sportsman, and the enjoyment and the performance of the airplane just gets better every time I put her into the air…..”
“The Advanced Flight Systems EFIS and auto pilot combination work wonderfully well together.”
“The airplane turns out to be harder to keep on the ground than to let it fly.”
“I think the Sportsman is an incredible way to get out and discover America.”
John Mark Stroud
“We chose the Sportsman because of its outstanding performance and the 2+2 seating to accommodate our kids. The TWTT program was an excellent fit for us… I look back on it as one of the most enjoyable and significant events of my life.”
Eric “Zen” and Tracy “Matrix” Schmidt
“At three separate locations, Ground and Tower controllers have started radio chatter with us to ask us about our sweet little Sportsman. Life is Good!”
“It’s quite a game changer to be able to cruise at 120-123ktas on 31″ Bushwheels with a full load… made it all the way up to the North Slope and as far west as Kotzebue. Winter was coming and the fall colors were spectacular in the Brooks. Great flying in the Alaska Range…Followed friends around in their new Cub for a few days and was pretty impressed that we could hang with them most places we went, though I had to cruise with a notch of flaps so we wouldn’t outrun them!…”
Hai and Rick Longworth
“I now feel like [I know] everything about a plane and would not hesitate to tackle some minor repairs or modification work in the future.”
“I’ve had my Sportsman for the first year now, and put 160 hours on it. It is an amazing plane, unsurpassed flight characteristics, good speed, rate of climb, and range. The Two Weeks To Taxi program was a great experience, the best way to get done with the project, and built straight. I highly recommend this airplane to anyone looking for a First Class ride!”
“Wow…what a ride!”
“I chose the Sportsman for it’s versatility. I like to make long cross-country trips, but also do a lot of bush flying.”
“Short field landing is easy and once trimmed it just flies itself.”
“The Two Weeks to Taxi program was a great experience that I look back on very fondly.”
“We are in the Bahamas and the outback of the islands, and everything is great! Lovely – air – ro – plane!”
Dennis and Kathy Franz
“The Two Weeks to Taxi program was most positive for us. For those very intense two weeks we were head and part of a team of experienced craftsman that taught us about the airplane. This has left us with invaluable confidence in understanding.”
Tim Fitzgerald and Darren Walmsley
“My hat goes off to Glasair who have designed a great aircraft. This plane will suit our needs as we fly around the outback of Australia.”