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CZAW Lake Sport Mermaid

WetAero M6 Mermaid



The all-new Mermaid is the first amphibian to be designed especially to comply with the FAAs new Light Sport Aircraft rules. It is also the first new certified single-engine amphibian to reach production in decades.
The design parameters were challenging: make a certifiable, roomy amphibian that will fit the LSA rules (2-place, 1235 pounds gross, low stall speed), and that will be affordable, reliable, and fun to fly; then give it the speed and range to be practical as a transportation device, and dual controls, for training and peace of mind. The Mermaid does it all, and more.
Of conventional all-metal design, the Mermaid is built by European craftsmen, with US-sourced materials. Its five watertight compartments are built with EDO-style pump-outs. The slipper-clutch Rotax 912ULS (914 also available) puts out 100 reliable horsepower while burning well under 5 gph. The useful load is over 500 pounds, and the large baggage area is located nearly on the CG, to make its capacity truly usable. The wide cockpit is comfortable; and it affords a large panel area.


In the US, the very early stages of prototype 1 used a Rotax 100HP as the power plant.  This installation was refined over the next two years with probably no less than 6 different configurations using the Rotax. After essentially complete redesign of the prototype number one in the U.S. with this power plant, the next one and half years of performing flight and water testing gave good results. Even though adequate in horsepower, performance should be better on hot and heavily loaded days, and there were propeller inefficiencies from some of the after body aerodynamic interference.


WetAero M6 Mermaid


During one of the demo flights a customer from Australia suggested it might have better performance with a Jabiru 125 HP power plant. During initial flight tests this power plant proved to perform slightly better than the Rotax. But the installation was still lacking its full potential until repositioned higher above the after body structure.  This one modification substantially increased the performance of the M6. The Jabiru was a tough engine to cool in the pusher configuration. After almost a year perfecting this engine installation they were capable of running on step taxi without limitations.

But then one customer insisted on the Rotax installation.

Dan Card received the first production Mermaid in parts and began construction in December 2005. Parts and pieces to make the fuselage, bulkheads, tail, and wings arrived from Czech Aircraft Works, where they were previously partially assembled using the factory jigs. Dan still had much of the aircraft to build. The challenge to build the first customer-built Mermaid began with assembling the aircraft for fit and finish while meeting the individual aspects of being “the first.” The construction of the Mermaid is very conventional as far as riveted aluminum monocoque construction goes. With plenty of traditional rivets to squeeze and buck, the fuselage in essence emerges in one piece, from nose to vertical stabilizer, including a robust center section to which the wings attach. The V hull is reinforced with a boxed section (at the bow) that houses the nose wheel when it’s retracted and closed off by its doors. It’s also triangulated with a flat floor onto which the seats, rudder pedals, and center console get fastened. With a series of 10 bulkheads, about a foot apart, completing the structure, the hull area below the seats becomes exceedingly robust.

The wing center section extends past the cockpit just far enough to support (or be supported by) the repositionable (not fully retracted) hydraulically actuated main gear. The wings are attached just outside the main gear bay via three bolts in the main spar and one in the drag spar, but in each instance, there is no carry-through of either spar. The ailerons on the Mermaid are actuated by push-pull and torque tubes, not cables. The flaps stop at the butt end of the wing and do not extend through the center section and die into the fuselage. They are slotted and use a displaced hinge pivot similar to the RV-10, a Cirrus SR22, or a Lancair Legacy; not really clean, but simple. The center section is also used as a platform for supporting/carrying ancillary systems like the battery, fuel pumps and filters, strobe pack, solenoids, disconnects, and relays, but it also serves as the main attachment for the engine pylon.

This Mermaid’s inaugural flight took place in September 2007 and was conducted over the rural farmlands of Fresno, California.


The Mermaid received ASTM certification #19.

Stall: 35 kt / 40 mph / 64 kmh
Cruise: 100 kt / 115 mph / 185 kmh
VNE: 115 kt / 132 mph / 212 kmh
Empty Weight: 330 kg / 727 lbs
MTOW Weight: 560 kg / 1235 lbs
Climb Ratio: 1000 ft/min / 5 m/s
Take-off distance (50ft obstacle): 600 ft / 183 m
Landing distance (50ft obstacle): 600 ft / 183 m


Engine: Jabiru 3300, 120 hp
Wing span: 31 ft
Wing area: 124 sq.ft
Length: 24 ft
Empty weight: 888 lb
Gross weight: 1430 lb
Fuel capacity: 30 USG
Cruise: 115 mph
Stall: 40 mph
Range: 580 sm
Rate of climb: 1000 fpm
Takeoff dist: 450 ft
Landing dist: 500 ft
Seats: 2
Cockpit width: 44 in
Landing gear: retract tricycle
LSA: yes


WetAero Mermaid M6
Engine: Rotax 912 ULS
Wing span: 33.3 ft / 10,152 m
Length: 25 ft / 7,62 m
Wing area: 134.5 sq.ft / 12,5 sq.m
Wing loading: 10.65 lb/sq.ft / 45,6 kg/sq.m
Empty weight: 925 lb / 420 kg
Gross weight: 1430 lb / 650 kg
Useful load: 505 lb / 230 kg
Cabin width: 46 inch / 117 kg
Fuel capacity: 2x15 / 2x57 liters
Luggage space: 16 cu.ft / 450 lt
"G" limit: +4 / -2 G
Take-off (grass): 511 ft / 156 m
Take off (50" object grass): 850 ft / 259 m
Climb rate: 800 fpm / 4 m/s
Stall speed with flaps: 32 mph / 52 km/h
Stall speed w/o flaps: 36 mph / 57 km/s
Cruise speed (75% power - TAS): 110 mph / 177 km/h
Never exceed speed (VNE): 155 mph / 250 km/h
Range (75% power, no res.): 450 sm / 725 km
Endurance (no res.): 4,5 hours
Landing ground roll (grass): 434 ft / 132 m
Price 2012: $147,000 Rotax 912ULS Base Model
$168,000 fully optioned.


WetAero Mermaid M6
Jabiru 3300 120 HP
Takeoff (grass): 450 ft / 137 m
Takeoff (50-foot object grass): 1,080 ft / 330 m
Climb rate: 910 fpm / 4,6 m/s
Stall speed with flaps: 32 mph / 52 km/h
Stall speed w/o flaps: 36 mph / 57 km/h
Cruise speed (75% power TAS): 118 mph / 190 km/h
Never-exceed speed (Vne): 155 mph / 250 km/h
Range (75% power, no reserve): 620 sm / 1000 km
Endurance (no reserve): 4 hours
Landing ground roll (grass): 434 ft / 132 m








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