Jim Patillo


My spar had about 300 hours on it when it failed. When I originally
jigged and put the spars together, I looked them over very carefully
and did not see any sign of stress or cracks. They looked perfect.
After I talked with Scott Swing, the guy who load tested spars for
QAC, I feel confident their testing proceedure was flawed and caused
my problem. I believe there are other bad spars out there in flying
airplanes but will only surface if the spars were aligned like mine.
How long that will take I cannot say.

I believe some spars were over stressed (due to a bad load test
fixture)when tested and are predisposed to failure. I belive there
are stress risers on some spars. Since there were no alignment
markings on the spars indicating top from bottom (after being tested)
one can randomly place the stress riser in the position I did and the
failure will occur.

I will say again, it is very important to monitor the areas just
under pilot and pax legs at the radius. That is the approximate
location where the failure can occur. If you notice the slightest
mark in those areas, ground the airplane and check it out
immediately. My crack appeared so small on the surface that it could
have been easily overlooked. Once I opened it up for investigation I
was glad I did. Read the article I wrote. MAKE SURE TO CHECK LS1

Some may say the failure will only occur on the ground like mine and
James' did but that may not be true.


Jim Patillo N46JP Q200

--- In Q-LIST@..., Mike Perry <dmperry1012@c...> wrote:
I haven't seen any comments on the list since James Postma posted
report, but I think we need to discuss it. This is apparently a
failure similar to what Jim Patillo found at annual in 2001 (Q-Talk
87). As Jim elegantly documented, the spars may have been damaged
the testing process, leaving a weakened area around BL12 in some
spars --
likely only a few spars, but still a concern.

My questions are:
Did anyone else have a similar failure?
Is there a one time inspection procedure we can do?
Any special inspection we can do if we have the canard off
for some
other reason?
Is there a recurrent inspection that should be done?
If so what inspection and how often?
Finally, how much time did each airframe have?

Mike Perry

At 09:54 AM 5/20/2005 -0700, James Postma wrote:

Hello Group,

I had a landing accident at Chino on April 21 which resulted in a

This was in a Q2 with the LS-1 canard. It broke just inside the
fuselage on
the right side in the area that Jim Patillo has repaired on his

The landing was smooth and the right canard did not impact
anything. I
swerved right, then left, then right and the spar broke. When the
settled to the ground, it ground looped to the right 200 degrees.

The NTSB and the FAA is investigating. I asked the FAA accident
investigator if they would take any action regarding the airplane
type and
he said that seeing as it is experimental, it is up to the
owner/builders to
take some action. There probably will be an NTSB accident report
as there
was substantial damage to the airplane. I was not injured.

The airplane does not have the wheel alinement.

If you want to comment on this, please send mail to me as well as
to the
list as I am not getting mail from the list. Telephone calls are
also O.K.

James Postma
Steilacoom, Washington
(253) 584-1182 9:00 to 8:00 PDT

Join to automatically receive all group messages.