Re: Older Rotax 503

David J. Gall


Some follow-up: Norm Howell set an FAI record as follows (taken from the FAI

Sub-class : C-1a/0 (Landplanes: take off weight less than 300 kg)
Group 3 : turbo-jet
Speed over a recognised course : 233.54 km/h

Date of flight: 27/07/1988
Pilot: Norman E. HOWELL (USA)
Course/place: Enid, OK (USA)

Quickie (1 Rotax 503 Dual Carb, 52 hp)
Registered 'N17UQ'

Database ID 1107

Note that FAI incorrectly listed the Rotax 503 DC as a "turbo-jet"!!! The
speed of 233.54 km/hr works out to 145.115mph.

That record was set in 1988. In the Jan/Feb 1990 Q-Talk (pg. 8), Norm talks
about his engine and gearbox. He says he recommeds the 2.238:1 ratio. He
says he's using a 2.00:1 and does not recommend it.

With the 2.00:1, he ran a Prince 2 blade 46D x 53P prop, and that it's "like
third gear on a Porsche... you go like a bat out of hell, but you are slow
off the line. I still don't know how fast mine will go since airframe
redline occurs before engine redline and it's still accelerating."(!)

He talks about the marginal takeoff and climb performance, then recommeds
the 2.238:1, indicating 1200 fpm climbs at 75mph. He says he'll report on
the performance differences when he finishes changing over to the 2.238:1. I
haven't had time to look up the follow-up report.

FYI, Howell held four of the five records ever set in a Quickie. All have
been surpassed. He also held one record in a Long-EZ, and is the current
holder of seven records set in a Boeing C-17 Globemaster.

David J. Gall

-----Original Message-----
From: Q-LIST@... [mailto:Q-LIST@...]
On Behalf Of David J. Gall
Sent: Monday, August 01, 2005 12:30 PM
To: Q-LIST@...
Subject: RE: [Q-LIST] Older Rotax 503


Norm Howell built a sweet Quickie called the "Ugly Quickling"
in the 80's.
He set some records in it with his highly modified Onan (not
fire-breathing, just intake, exhaust, and >>lotsa good
cooling mods<< hint hint). After he got tired of the Onan
(poor climb), he switched to a Rotax 503 with a 2.00:1
gearbox. I think he used the Miller-style cowl. The gearbox
necessitated a tiny prop, with quite high pitch. The climb
was a little better than with the Onan, but the cruise speed
was way up there. I don't recall a solid number from anything
published, but IIRC there was something about 150mph at 50%
power and some talk about the airframe redline being around
170mph and that being easily do-able at cruise....

I'd have to look things up to verify all the foregoing so
don't take it as gospel. Do your own research. Sport Aviation
magazine Sept. 1987 page 48 for the Onan powered version.
Q-Talk back issues for the Rotax upgrade info (sorry, I don't
have issue numbers).

BTW, I have a 503 set aside for my Quickie for after the Onan
scares me too much. The oil injection is a necessity in my
opinion. The non-injected engines rely on the fuel mix for
lubrication and at high airspeed/low throttle, the
lubrication just isn't enough for the high RPM at which the
prop is turning the engine such as during descent (like on
that mock strafing run!). With oil injection, the oil
delivery is metered in part by throttle setting and in part
by RPM, so at low throttle/high RPM you get a "richer" oil
mix and (hopefully!) adequate lubrication. Of course,
ultralights don't suffer the 'detriment' of high speeds so
ignore your ultralight buddies' advice on this issue. Also,
ignore the ultralight prop manufacturer's recommendations
(Powerfin, Ivo, Warp, etc.) and get a Catto prop (or
equivalent) for your 503 SuperQuickie....

David J. Gall

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