AmEagle American Eaglet
Designed by Larry Haig of Muskegon, Michigan, beginning in September 1974, the American Eaglet is a self-launching sailplane. The type is a high wing monoplane with a pod-and-boom type fuselage with the engine mounted aft of the cockpit and driving a pusher propeller; the cantilever inverted-Vee tailplane and elevators are carried on a tail boom that is a thin-walled aluminium tube with a moulded glassfibre tailcone. Construction is largely of glassfibre and urethane foam cores, with some components of aluminium. The wings are stressed skin structures with spruce load-bearing spars and a single aluminium tube bracing strut on each side; the spars are surrounded by a urethane foam core, the leading edges and wing tips being of moulded glassfibre, and the urethane core portions are covered with epoxy-bonded precure glassfibre skin. There are no ailerons or flaps, but the functions of these two (ie roll and glide path control) are combined in two spoiler-like surfaces called 'spoilerons' at 30% chord on each upper surface towards the wing tip. The forward portion of the fuselage consists of two pre-formed glassfibre half shells pop-riveted to tubular aluminium longerons, the main load-bearing member in the fuselage being the bulkhead which carries the pilot's seat on one side and the engine mounting on the other. This also carries the tail boom at the top rear, the monowheel at the bottom and the wing spar carry-through at the top, and this bulkhead is an aluminium-skinned urethane foam composite structure. There is a combined pitot tube/lifting handle in the fuselage nose. The inverted-Vee tailplane is very similar to the wings structurally, with an epoxy/glassfibre skin over urethane foam cores, and this V-tail greatly improves control in pitch and yaw, as the prop wash 'blows' directly over the tail surfaces; the V-tail also makes spins impossible. The manually-retractable monowheel has an external friction-pad brake, and is supplemented by a tailwheel under the tip of each tailplane.
The American Eaglet can be completed and flown as a pure sailplane, without the engine; the powerplant fitted is a McCulloch 101B single cylinder two-stroke engine developing 12.2hp at 8,000rpm, and drives a two-blade fixed-pitch pusher propeller with nylon plastic blades that fold backwards through 90° when the engine is stopped. The engine is intended only for take-off and self recovery, and is not designed for continuous cross country operation; it can be restarted in flight. A fuel tank of 2 litres (0.5 US gallons) capacity is provided. Fuel tank capacity is generally sufficient for one takeoff and climb to 2,000 feet AGL and three airborne restarts and climbs from 500 feet back up to 2,000 feet. The McCulloch 101B engine was available in only limited quantities, and the West Bend 820 engine will be fitted when availability of the 101B becomes a problem.
The Eaglet was designed for kit building and Larry Haig formed the AmEAGLE Corporation to market it.
Construction of the prototype, registered N101EA, started in June 1975 and this made its first flight on 19 November that year; a second prototype was later flown. A total of 400 kits had been ordered by early 1980, of which 20 had been completed.
Wing span: 36 ft 0 in /10.97 m
Length: 16 ft 0 in
Height: 3 ft 0 in
Wing area: 72 sq.ft / 6.69 sq.m
Empty Weight: 160 lb / 72.5 kg
Payload: 200 lb / 90.5 kg
Gross Weight: 360 lb /163 kg
Wing Load: 5 lb/sq.ft / 41.04 kg/sq.m
Max speed: 115 mph (in smooth air, power off)
Aspect ratio: 18
Airfoil: Wortmann FX-61-184
MinSink: 0.76 m/s / 2.50 fps / 1.48 kt at 40 mph
L/DMax: 27 @ 84 kph/ 45 kt /52 mph
Max rate of climb at sea level: 450 ft/min
Take-off run: 1,000 ft
No. of Seats: 1