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Lake LA-4

LanShe Aerospace LA-4

Sun Lake Aircraft LA-4

 

lakela4-200
LA4/200

 

Lake Aircraft Corp marketed the Colonial Skimmer as the Lake Skimmer, and developed the aircraft into the LA4. The initial Lake prototype, the "LA-4P", very similar to the C-2 Skimmer, performed its initial flight in November 1959; it was followed by two "LA-4A" prototypes in 1960, N1001L c/n 244 and N1002L c/n 245, which featured a 1.22 meter (4 foot) wingspan stretch and structural reinforcement. Power was a 180hp Lycoming O-360A1A pusher.
 
The LA-4A in turn led to the production "LA-4", which featured a bow stretched by 43 centimeters (17 inches), with the nose gear now fully retracting. Powerplant remained the O-390-A1A. The first production model of this version flew in 1960,N261B c/n 121. Total production of the initial model of the LA-4P appears to have been about 70 aircraft, including a one-off pure seaplane with no landing gear. In 1970 Lake removed the retractable gear from some LA-4s and offered them as seaplanes with detachable beaching gear.
 
Lake-LA4-01
Lake LA-4 N2611P

In 1968, work began on a new model with a Lycoming IO-360-A1B engine featuring 150 kW (200 HP), with an LA-4 converted as a testbed. The "LA-4-200" went into production in 1969 and did much to raise the profile of the LA-4, with sales picking up. It featured other modest improvements, notably fuel storage in the floats, plus an optional combustion heater in a fairing above the cockpit, and also acquired the name of "Buccaneer". Performance increased substantially, as did the price tag.
Both the 180 hp and 200 hp Buccaneer versions are similar in appearance and differ only in instrument layout apart from the engine power.
 
Lake-LA4-03
Lake LA-4-200

It then generated a modestly refined version, designated the "LA-4-200EP", the "EP" indicating "Enhanced Performance", other interpretations being "Extended Propeller", that being one of the features. It also had a new IO-360-A1B6 engine, same horsepower but smoother operation, a revised engine nacelle, batwings, cargo door, and fuel floats as standard equipment. An "LA-4-200EPR" was also introduced that was much the same, but with a reversible propeller. Some LA-4-180, -200, and -200EP had after-market Rajay turbochargers.

 

Lake-LA4-2

 

In 1984 Lake then produced the LA-250 Renegade, which featured a stretch of 1.05 meters (41 inches), permitting accommodations for four or six, with additional pop-up doors on each side of the rear cockpit; a revised and more rakish tailfin with a forward fillet of greater area; and a Lycoming IO-540-C4B5 flat-six air-cooled engine providing 185 kW (250 HP). A militarized version of the LA-250 was introduced in 1985 as the "Seawolf", featuring four underwing pylons and radar, the radome being mounted on the front of the engine nacelle. The pylons could carry munitions including bombs and rockets, reconnaissance pods, or parachutable survival pods kitted for different environments.
 
Lake discontinued the LA-4 and the Seaplane and concentrated on production of the Buccaneer and the Renegade. Standard fuel tanks in the Lake were 40 gallons until someone decided that the pontoons could also be used as fuel links. The new auxiliary tanks took 7-1/2 gallons on each side, and the total capacity increased to 55 gallons. The extra 20 hp in the 200-hp Buccaneer has increased cruising speed by 12 mph and top speed by 14 mph. Allowable gross weight also increased an additional 200 pounds.
 
The LA-250 led in turn to the LA-270 Turbo Renegade, which was much the same but had a turbocharged TIO-540-AA1AD engine providing 200 kW (270 HP). The major visible difference was a turbocharger inlet extension at the base of the engine pylon. A militarized Seawolf version was offered as well. Sources mention a "Sea Fury", which was an LA-250/270 with salt-water corrosion protection.
 
Lake-LA4-04
Sun Lake Renegade
 
The Renegade T270 is longer in the fuselage and is fitted with six seats. The model offered four to six passenger seating, improved useful load and 90 gallons of fuel on board. In 1987 turbo charging was added via the Lycoming TIO-540-AA1AB, resulting in 20 more horses to the Renegade and a ceiling of up to 23,800 ft. The Turbo 270 Renegade, which differs from previous versions in having a lengthened cabin, a turbocharged 250 shp (186 kW) Lycoming IO-540-C4B5 flat-six engine. The Seawolf is a maritime patrol version with underwing stores pylons.
 
Lake Aircraft’s 270 hp turbocharged Renegade has set four new world records in the light seaplane class, including an altitude record of 27,300 feet.
 
In 1987 the Buccaneer model was put into retirement. Latest models of the 250 and 270 hp Lakes are all marketed under the name Seafury, and incorporate improvements in corrosion protection for operation in salt water.
 
The LA-4 1960 base price was $26,580 and the 1968 LA-4-200 Buccaneer $31,000, rising to $53,000 in 1980. The LA-4-200EP Buccaneer $96,600 in 1983, and by 2004, $110,000-125,000. The Renegade sold for $146,000 in 1982, and $220,000 by 1986. About 135 had been built to 2005.
 
Twenty-four were built to 1961 and about 916 to 2005, excluding Renegade. More than 1,200 of the Lake series single-engined amphibians had sold to 1990. The LA-270T / Turbo Seafury sold for $348,000 in 1991, and $745,500 by 2001.
 
The four‑seat Lake LA‑4‑200EP am­phibian, first built in 1983, has been revived by LanShe Aerospace in Florida and in 2004 was selling for US$299,000. The EP version has an IO‑360 engine and a payload of around 900 lbs. It has Keelson boosters on the hull and "bat wing" wing‑root fillets to increase performance. The LA-270T / Turbo Seafury was priced at $348,000 in 1991, and $745,500 in 2001. The sole 1969 gearless Lake was for sale at $23,562.
 
The 1985 Seawolf was a military version of the LA-4-250, 2 of which reportedly were boosted to 290hp. One prototype, N1401G, was built.
 
The final Lake amphibian was produced in 2007. At last notice, the Lake firm was still in business, but it had been reduced to a small shop providing parts and service to the customer base.
 
Lake-LA4-05

Lake LA-4-250 N124L

 
 
LA-4
1960 TC 1A13
Engine: Lycoming O-360A1A 180hp
Wing span: 38'0"
Length: 24'11"
Gross wt. 2,400 lb
Empty wt. 1,600 lb
Useful load: 850 lb
Fuel capacity 40 USG
Max speed: 140 mph
Cruise: 131 mph
Stall: 50 mph
Initial climb rate: 800 fpm
Ceiling: 14,000 ft
Range: 627 mi
Takeoff run (land): 650 ft
Takeoff run (water): 1,125 ft
Landing roll (land): 475 ft
Landing run (water): 600 ft
Seats: 4
 
LA-4A
1960
Engine: Lycoming O-360A1A 180hp
Seats: 4
 
LA-4P
1960
Engine: Lycoming O-360A1A 180hp
Length: 24'11"
Seats: 4
No built: 1
 
Aerofab LA-4-180
1961-69
Engine: Lycoming O-360A1A 180hp
Seats: 4
 
LA-4/200 Buccaneer
1968
Engine: Lycoming IO-360-A1B, 200 hp.
TBO: 1600 hrs.
Prop: Hartzell 2-blade, 74-in.
Seats: 4.
Length: 25 ft.
Height: 9.3 ft.
Wingspan: 38 ft.
Wing area: 170 sq.ft.
Wing aspect ratio: 8.6.
Maximum ramp weight: 2690 lbs.
Maximum takeoff weight: 2690 lbs.
Standard empty weight: 1555 lbs.
Maximum useful load: 1135 lbs.
Maximum landing weight: 2690 lbs.
Wing loading: 15.2 lbs/sq.ft.
Power loading: 13.5 lbs/hp.
Maximum usable fuel: 324 lbs.
Best rate of climb: 1200 @ 69 kts.
Climb gradient: 1043 ft/nm.
Service ceiling: 14,000 ft.
Maximum speed: 134 kts.
Normal cruise @ 65% pwr @ 8000 ft: 130 kts.
Fuel flow @ normal cruise: 56 pph.
Endurance at normal cruise: 5.6hrs:
Stalling speed clean: 45 kts.
Stalling speed gear/flaps down: 39 kts.
Turbulent-air penetration speed: 106 kts.
Amphibious retractable nose wheel undercarriage.
Takeoff run (water) 1,100 ft
Takeoff run (land) 600 ft
Landing run (water) 600 ft
Landing roll (land) 475 ft
Fuel capacity 54 USG
 
Rivard LA-4-200EP Buccaneer
1982-86
Engine: Lyoming IO-360-A1B6
Useful load: 1135 lb
 
Lake 250 Renegade
Engine: Textron Lycoming TIO 540 AA2AD, 266 hp
Length : 29.659 ft / 9.04 m
Height: 10.007 ft / 3.05 m
Wingspan: 38.320 ft / 11.68 m
Aspect ratio: 8.96
Wing area: 164.043 sq.ft. / 15.24 sq.m
Max take off weight: 3139.9 lb / 1424.0 kg
Weight empty: 2074.9 lb / 941.0 kg
Max. payload weight: 1065.0 lb / 483.0 kg
Landing speed: 49 kt / 91 km/h
Cruising speed: 155 kt / 287 km/h
Take off distance: 879 ft / 268 m
Landing distance: 607 ft / 185 m
Initial climb rate: 905.51 ft/min / 4.6 m/s
Service ceiling: 20013 ft / 6100 m
Wing load: 19.07 lb/sq.ft / 93.0 kg/sq.m
Range: 1120 nm / 2074 km
Crew: 1+3
 
Rivard LA-4-250 Renegade / Sun Lake LA-4-250 Renegade / Sun Lake Renegade 2
1982
Engine: Lycoming IO-540-C4B5, 250hp
Prop: 3 blade metal
Wing span: 38'0"
Length: 28'4"
Gross wt. 3,140 lb
Useful load: 1200 lb
Empty wt. 1,850 lb
Fuel capacity 90 USG
Cruise speed: 140 mph / 122 kt
Stall: 56 mph
Initial climb rate: 900 fpm
Ceiling: 12,500'
Takeoff run (land) 650 ft.
Takeoff run (water) 1,125 ft.
Landing roll (land) 475 ft.
Landing run (water) 600 ft.
Seats: 4-6
 
Sun Lake Renegade 2T
Engine: Lycoming TIO-540-AA1AD
Prop: 3 blade metal
Wing span: 38'0"
Length: 28'4"
Fuel capacity: 90 USG
Seats: 4-6
 
LA-270T / Turbo Seafury
1987
Engine: Lycoming TIO-540-AA1AD, 270hp
Seats: 4
 
Renegade T270
Engine: Lycoming TIO-540- AA1AB, 270 hp.
Gross wt. 3,140 lb.
Empty wt. 1,850 lb
Fuel capacity 90 USG
ROC: 1000 fpm @ 75 kts.
Payload: 1200 lb.
Seats 4-6.
Cruise 128 kts.
Stall 53 mph.
Initial climb rate 900 fpm
Ceiling 23,800 ft ft.
Takeoff run (land) 650 ft.
Takeoff run (water) 1,125 ft
Landing roll (land) 475 ft
Landing run (water) 600 ft
 
Seaplane
1969
Engine: Lycoming O-360, 180hp
No built: 1, N7637L c/n 411
Undercarriage: boat
Seats: 4
Price: $23,562
 
Seawolf 1
1985
Engine: 290hp
No built: / N1401G

 

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