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Lancair International Lancair IV

 

lancair4


In 1988, Lance contacted Martin Hollman to help design a four place aircraft around a Contintental TSIO-550A engine which had 350 hp at 2,700 rpm. The goal was to design and produce a 345 mph, four seat, pressurized aircraft that could be easily built in one’s home shop and fly at 24,000 ft.. The Lancair IV-P maintains a 5.0 psi cabin differential. From the outset the aircraft was designed to be presssurised Aerodynamicist, Rick McWilliams designed the wing.
In addition to computer analysis and static load testing, a full flutter test program was conducted. The airframe was analyzed through ground vibration testing (GVT) that determines stiffness and natural frequencies of all major components. Test pilot Dave Morss conducted all in-flight tests to again verify safe operations throughout the entire flight envelope.
A complete stress/strain survey was conducted by Hartzell and MT-Propeller to ensure a perfect match to the Continental engine and airframe. In these tests, sophisticated radio transmitting equipment was attached to the engine and propeller so that actual real-time, in-flight data could be received and analyzed.
With the Lancair IV and IV-P requirements for reduced weight and extreme high speeds, a small, strong and stiff wing was essential. Carbon fiber was chosen because of its strength to weight ratio, which is generally 25% lighter than E-glass as well as 2 times stiffer.
Typical ply schedules for the airframe will range from three to as many as seventy plies of carbon fiber, depending on the load requirements. These carbon fibers are typically woven materials; however, spar caps, longerons, and roll over structures are fabricated with uni-directional carbon.
To complete the sandwich structure, only Nomex honeycomb core materials are used. The resultant structure is comprised of several layers of woven carbon fiber, a film adhesive layer on each side of the Nomex core, and followed by closeout layers of woven carbon fiber.
The wing compromises a unique blend of an inboard custom airfoil section with a NACA tip section. Also unique for such a high-speed aircraft is the high laminar flow airflow root section, which has a 17% chord thickness. This offers the added benefits of greater strength, greater stiffness and increased fuel volume.

The Lancair IV, IV-P and Propjet were designed for high altitude operations and they are in their element when cruising up in the flight levels. To achieve this high altitude performance, the wing has relatively high aspect ratio that can be further enhanced with addition of the extended winglets. The wing offers a higher wing loading but has full slotted Fowler flaps to reduce stall speed and improve slow speed handling. The Fowler flaps operate in roller tracks that are completely hidden when the flaps are retracted. When the flaps are extended, they add considerable wing area to enhance slow speed handling. Take off flaps (full aft extension and 10 degrees down) can be deployed at speeds as high as 200 mph (174 kts). This Fowler flap system is fully electro/hydraulic and is completely installed in every Fastbuild kit.
A winglet option increases span and adds to roll coupling for greater stability up in the thinner air of the flight levels. Winglets are interchangeable in a matter of minutes with the standard wing tip. In addition, a speed brake option to enable quick descents without reducing power is offered.
The ailerons are 15% of chord-long and thin.
Fuel is carried in the "wet wings" which are integral with the structure. Typical fuel is 90 US gallons with options for adding more fuel bays in the wing and increasing volume up to approximately 110 US gallons for the reciprocating engine and 125 or 150 US gallons for the turboprop, Propjet. The Propjet wings will hold 115 US gallons and the kit includes a header tank that holds an additional 10 US gallons. There is an optional header tank that will hold 35 US gallons available. Fuel tanks are selected from the single valve that offers left, right, and off.
The "IV" has a very roomy cabin area measuring 46 inches across the front seats and 43 inches in the back. Cabin height is 48 inches. Front seats have ground adjustable seat backs and large side arm rests that add to the overall comfort. The cabin door offers an inflatable seal.
On approach the one-piece, 3/8" thick windshield provides excellent visibility. The large side windows are 3/16" thick on standard IV’s and 1/4" thick on the pressurized IV-P.
Dual side sticks are standard.
The gear system is electro/hydraulic and includes an accumulator thereby providing a constant pressure of 1100 psi. In addition, the Fowler flap system uses the same electro/hydraulic pressure for operation. As a gear down backup, a hand pump is supplied which draws hydraulic fluid from a dedicated portion of the reservoir. All airframe kits contain this complete gear and actuation system. The main gear is made of tubular 4340 steel. The main gearbox is pre-aligned truss assembly that is already installed for you. These gear legs retract using a rack and pinion system. Large 600x6 wheels and heavy-duty brakes are standard. The nose gear is a premium air/oleo strut designed with an internal shimmy dampener and alignment system. Steering is via differential braking .
The Lancair IV and IV-P, are designed around the Continental TSIO-550. With the "IV’s" performance optimized for the flight levels, this twin turbocharged, twin intercooled engine delivers 75% power up to 25,000 ft. with true airspeeds of 330 to 345 mph. An option is the IO-550 engine.

The Lancair IV was built in 1.5 years and introduced at Oshkosh in 1990. The first prototype and kits were not pressurized. On a Friday in July, 1990, Lance and Dave Morss took off for Oshkosh, flying at 19,000 feet and using oxygen, the cruise speed was 300 kts. About 25 Lancair IVs were sold that year at Oshkosh. The Lancair IV was fast and Dave Morss went on to set many records with it such as flying from Los Angeles, CA to Florida in 6 hours and  2 minutes at 24,000 ft. averaging 385 mph.

 

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In 1998 a 350 hp Lancair IV held the San Francisco-Denver record at an average speed of 62 kph. At that time, of the 400 sold, 70 were flyng. The IV (TC LC30) kit price in 1989 was $52,400 for a non-pressurized standard-build kit, $100,800 for a pressurized fast-build kit and the IV-P pressurized version was $38,500 (1989), $76,500-80,200 (1998).

 

The "IV" is qualified to race in the unlimited category at the Reno National Air Races, and at Reno, the "IV" has again set lap speed records in the new Sport Class. Test pilot Dave Morss has piloted the IV at all Reno races, setting course records on more than one occasion and has set many internationally recognized world speed records.

Walter, in the Czech Republic has worked with Lancair to complete the installation of the Walter 601E engine into the Lancair IV-P airframe. Hartzell as well as Avia propeller have designed propellers for this engine installation.


For a little more power and speed, Lancair introduced the Propjet in 2000. This aircraft is designed for the Walter 601E, 750hp turboprop engine. This engine features two basic parts: the gas generator and power section. The gas generator consists of two stage axial and one stage centrifugal compressor, annular combustor and one stage axial turbine. An accessory gearbox with instruments necessary for engine operation and power control is situated on the rear part of the compressor air intake casing. An oil tank is an integral part of the accessory gearbox. The power section is mounted on the front part of the gas generator. This section consists of one stage axial turbine, exhaust system (exhaust is optional) and two stage reduction gearbox with a torquemeter and propeller shaft. The propeller governor is situated on the reduction gearbox and controls the hydraulic actuated propeller including the reverse thrust angle adjustment. The engine is equipped with a system of electronic limiters, which protects the engine against overload. The pressurization comes from a low pressure bleed air port that has been installed on the engine. This allows air into the cabin through the mixer box installed on the firewall. The pilot operated valve and mixer box control the quantity and temperature of air into the cockpit. Typical cruise with the turboprop Walter engine at 26,000 feet is 370 mph.


There are 4 approved propellers for the IV, IV-P and Propjet – the composite three or four-blade by MT-Propeller, the Avia propeller and the aluminum three blade by Hartzell. These propellers have been fully stress/strain tested in flight by the manufacturer on IV’s and are fully approved. They are all 76" in diameter, which provides ground clearance of approximately 10 inches.


The IV-P is structurally quite different and is designed to operate with 5.0 psi cabin differential pressure. The structure again has been fully FEA analyzed and tested; ground tested to over 10 psi with no problems encountered.
The pressurization system is custom developed by Dukes Inc., and it is fully automatic.

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Hollmann designed a Lancair IV with a PT6A-27 gas turbine engine for Ty Ross. Ty flew his aircraft to Oshkosh but he had to make 5 landings to refuel. The LIV was designed to carry 90 gallons in the wing and with a fuel burn of over 35 gph the range is not long. Ty states that it has a climb rate of over 4,500 fpm.

 

Gallery

 

Lancair IV
Engine: Cont. TSIO-550
Horsepower: 350 h.p. @ 2600 rpm
Propeller: 3 blade, constant speed
Length: 25 ft.
Wingspan: 35.5 ft.
Wing Area: 98 sq. ft. (108 sq. ft. with optional winglets)
Aspect Ratio: 9:1
Wing Loading: 36.2 lbs/sq. ft., 32.2 lbs/sq ft. (with winglets)
G Loading: +4.4, -2.2 G's (utility);+3.8, -2.0 G's (normal)
Empty Weight: 2,000 lbs.
Gross Weight: 3,550 lbs.
Fuel Capacity: 90 gal. (110 gal. with extended tanks)
Useful Load: 1,550 lbs.
Baggage Capacity: 150 lbs.
Seats: 4
Cabin Width: 46 in. (front) 43 in. (rear)
Cabin Height: 48 in.
Cruise: 330 mph @ 24,000 ft. (typical)
Fuel Consumption: 18-22 gph (typical)
Maximum Range: 1550 sm (with reserves @ 8,000 ft.)
Endurance: 6 hours
Rate of Climb: 2,000 fpm (solo), 1,500 fpm (gross)
Takeoff Distance: 1,500 ft. (gross @ sea level)
Landing Roll: 1,900 ft.
Stall Speed: 75 mph (dirty); 73 mph (dirty and with optional winglets)
Cross Wind Landing: 21 mph component

Lancair IV
Engine: Continental TSIO-550-B, 350 hp.
Speed max: 315 mph.
Cruise: 300 mph.
Range: 1450 sm.
Stall: 75 mph.
ROC: 2600 fpm.
Take-off dist: 1200 ft.
Landing dist: 1400 ft.
Service ceiling: 29,000 ft.
HP range: 280-350.
Fuel cap: 82 USG.
Weight empty: 1900 lbs.
Gross: 3200 lbs.
Height: 8 ft.
Length: 25 ft.
Wing span: 30.2 ft.
Wing area: 98 sq.ft.
Seats: 4.
Landing gear: retractable nose wheel.
Cockpit width: 46 in.

Lancair IV
Engine: Continental TIO-540K, 350 hp.
Cruise: 300 kt @ 23,000 ft.
Range: 1150nm.
Cockpit width: 46 in.

Lancair IV

Engine: Continental TSIO-550-E, 350 hp.
Speed max: 335 mph.
Cruise: 335 mph.
Range: 1450 sm.
Stall: 75 mph.
ROC: 2600 fpm.
Take-off dist: 1200 ft.
Landing dist: 1400 ft.
Service ceiling: 29,000 ft.
HP range: 280-350.
Fuel cap: 82 USG.
Weight empty: 1900 lbs.
Gross: 3200 lbs.
Height: 8 ft.
Length: 25 ft.
Wing span: 30.2 ft.
Wing area: 98 sq.ft.
Seats: 4.
Landing gear: retractable nose wheel.
Cockpit width: 46 in.

 

Lancair IV
Engine: Continental TSIO, 350 hp
Wing span: 9.2 m
Wing area: 9 sq.m
MAUW: 1450 kg
Empty weight: 862 kg
Fuel capacity: 310 lt
Max speed: 539 kph
Cruise speed: 426 kph
Minimum speed: 121 kph
Climb rate: 13 m/s
Seats: 4
Fuel consumption: 70 lt/hr

 

Lancair IV-P
Engine: Cont. TSIO-550
Horsepower: 350 h.p. @ 2600 rpm
Propeller: 3 blade, constant speed
Length: 25 ft.
Wingspan: 35.5 ft.
Pressurization: 5 psi
Wing Area: 98 sq. ft. (108 sq. ft. with optional winglets)
Aspect Ratio: 9:1
Wing Loading: 36.2 lbs/sq. ft., 32.2 lbs/sq ft. (with winglets)
G Loading: +4.4, -2.2 G's (utility);+3.8, -2.0 G's (normal)
Empty Weight: 2,200 lbs.
Gross Weight: 3,550 lbs.
Fuel Capacity: 90 gal. (110 gal. with extended tanks)
Useful Load: 1,350 lbs.
Baggage Capacity: 150 lbs.
Seats: 4
Cabin Width: 46 in. (front) 43 in. (rear)
Cabin Height: 48 in.
Cruise: 330 mph @ 24,000 ft. (typical)
Fuel Consumption: 18-22 gph (typical)
Maximum Range: 1550 sm (with reserves @ 8,000 ft.)
Endurance: 6 hours
Rate of Climb: 2,000 fpm (solo), 1,500 fpm (gross)
Takeoff Distance: 1,500 ft. (gross @ sea level)
Landing Roll: 1,900 ft.
Stall Speed: 75 mph (dirty); 73 mph (dirty and with optional winglets)
Cross Wind Landing: 21 mph component

Lancair IV-P
Engine: Continental TSIO-550-E, 350 hp.
Speed max: 335 mph.
Cruise: 335 mph.
Range: 1400 sm.
Stall: 75 mph.
ROC: 2600 fpm.
Take-off dist: 1500 ft.
Landing dist: 1700 ft.
Service ceiling: 29,000 ft.
HP range: 280-350.
Fuel cap: 82 USG.
Weight empty: 2200 lbs.
Gross: 3200 lbs.
Height: 8 ft.
Length: 25 ft.
Wing span: 30.2 ft.
Wing area: 98 sq.ft.
Seats: 4.
Landing gear: retractable nose wheel.
Cockpit width: 46 in.

Lancair IVP
Engine: Cont. TSIO-550B1B, 350 hp
TBO: 1600 hrs
Propeller: Const. spd.
Landing gear type: Tri/Retr.
Gross weight: 3200 lb
Empty weight, std: 2200 lb
Useful load, std: 1000lb
Fuel: 88 USG
Wingspan: 30.2 ft. (w/winglets: 32.6)
Overall length: 25 ft.
Height: 8 ft.
Wing area: 98 sq. ft (w/winglets: 108 sq. ft)
Seating capacity: 4
Cabin width: 46 in
Cabin height: 48 in
Baggage capacity: 150 lb
Cruise speed: 75% power: 300 kt  
Max range (w/ reserve): 75% power: 1050  nm
Fuel consumption  75% power: 18 USgph
Stall speed (gear, flaps down): 73 kt
Best rate of climb: 2500 fpm
Service ceiling: 25,000 ft
Takeoff ground roll: 800 ft
Landing ground roll: 1700 ft

 

 

 


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