Sun-N-Fun 1997 Pictures

As I was nearing a sleepy little part of Florida called Lakeland, I looked up and saw literally hundreds of aircraft. They were coming in from all directions, and they were all going to one place. Homebuilts, ultralights, warbirds -- the works. It was unbelievable. If you think that flying the pattern at Isla Grande is a pain sometimes, try flying to Lakeland some day when Sun-N-Fun is in progress. Talk about separating the men from the boys.

 This is a Pober Junior Ace (thanks to Rick Pellicciotti for ID)

That's one beautiful Avenger!

Argghhh! Somebody left the plane in the dryer! The man in the striped shirt and cap is my brother-in-law, who came all the way from Argentina to sample some Sun-N-Fun blisters. I had to explain to him that no, Port-A-Potties are not the norm in the United States. The aircraft appears to be a 1/2 scale Corsair. Anyone have more info on this one?

Kevin O'Brien comes through with ID: "This airplane is a WAR Aircraft Replicas 1/2 scale Corsair, a very rare homebuilt indeed. WAR built kits or offered plans for this, two different Mustangs, an alleged 1/2 scale Sea Fury, which looks more like 1/4 - a real Sea Fury is HUGE - and an FW-190. The principal of WAR died years ago testing one of his planes and the company did not survive him. A number of the little warbirds are flying though. They have unusual construction. The structure is wooden, overlaid with blocks of foam which are then carved to shape. The most common in the USA and Europe is probably the FW-190. A well built one looks very real except or the pilot being way out of scale."

Another update, this one from Joe Labert: Your webpage mentions that WAR Aircraft Replicas did not survive one of the three original owners. I’m afraid it has never gone completely out of business.  It has experience some real slowdowns, but it never died.   Mrs. Thoms, the first secretary of WAR and the wife of former owner Ken Thoms still acts as a consultant to the current owner. I too consult and design replacement parts and build parts for WAR.See Site: 

 Ah...the Glastar, the fishing rod, bait, and a picnic basket. What more can you possibly ask for? Oh, yeah. Sunblock.

Yup. You're right. It does look like the helm of the Enterprise. This a Lancair IVP, and the panel was designed by Gulf Coast Avionics. The two large panels are the Archangel EFIS and FMS display panels.

This is what $200,000 worth of 1997 Cessna 182 looks like from the inside.

Missed a spot, Billy Bob...

The VmaxProbe by Lars Giertz. This aircraft crashed on its first flight soon after Sun-N-Fun; Mr. Giertz was killed in the accident. (Thanks again to Rick for the ID!)

Recipe for Fun: Two thirds the size of a P-51 and a 454 cu. in. Chevy V-8. Ssssmokinnnggg!!! This is a Stewart S-51, an all-metal homebuilt design. (Rick gets credit for ID on this one as well!)

Your guess is as good as mine. What is it? Yes, it flies. Rumor has it the owner is a cantankerous coot, but he can make just about anything fly. Exhibit 1. Case closed.

This is a Turbine Seawind -- number 1, I believe. Nice! An attorney here in Puerto Rico who happens to be an enthusiastic pilot as well has bought one, supposed to take delivery next year.

And this is what a Seawind looks like from the inside.

The Stallion: Homebuilt, coast to coast range, 1600 lbs useful weight. (I couldn't find Aircraft Designs Inc.'s homepage, so the link points to a web page owned by a builder.)

This is Van's RV6A. There were more than a dozen of these at the show, which was no surprise to anyone.

All Images Copyright © 1997 by Juan Jiménez - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED