Custom Flight Bright Star
Designed by Morgan Williams Jr.
Custom Flight Ltd., of Midland Ontario, has introduced a new kit aircraft called the Bright Star. In response to requests for a lower priced version of the North Star, the Bright Star was developed. It retains the high quality standards and size of the North Star, but with some of the "extras" left off. The Bright Star has a single, larger door, no flaps, spring steel gear, a square tail, and smaller gas tanks. The gross weight is 1800 pounds and it can use aircraft or auto engines from 100 to 180 hp. It will be licensed in the experimental/amateur built category.
As of June, 2000, the prototype Bright Star has not flown yet.
The North Star fuselage strength was retained in the Bright Star to allow use of a great range of engines, from 100 hp to 180 hp. Many of the wing reinforcements in the North Star were to accommodate the very powerful flaps. By eliminating the flaps from the Bright Star we were able to lighten the wing structure, lower the price, and produce a wing with the same strength as the Super Cub wing and the improved lift of the North Star. The North Star wing can be put on the Bright Star Fuselage for a little more money, this however defeats the concept of keeping the cost as low as possible. The larger North Star gas tanks can be used in the Bright Star wings. The Bright Star has a squared off tail, and a trim tab instead of the jack screw, the same as Champs and Citabrias. This tail works fine and is more economical to produce.
There is only one door on the Bright Star and it is not split like the Cub door. It is one piece and similar in size to the Champ door making cockpit access easier. The door is hinged on the top so that it opens up against the wing and provides unobstructed access from in front of or aft of the wing struts.
A leaf spring landing gear similar to that used on the Citabrias and Cessnas is substituted for the more complicated Cub style gear.
Another way we reduced the purchase price was by eliminating the "bird cage" framework on top of the fuselage, and the belly framework under the fuselage. Instead tabs were welded on to allow the attachment of simple wood or aluminum framework made by the builder. Inexpensive wood stringers can also be supplied by the builder to keep the cost down or aluminum stringers can be purchased from CF Ltd.
-Compression struts in line with aileron hinges, forces travel in a straight line instead of zig-zaging through the spars.
-raked wing tip gives long trailing edge, maximizing aspect ratio and increasing effective wing span, does not block visibility.
- leading edge metal (.020-2024 T3) extends about 4" aft of front spar on top, giving a truer airfoil shape.
-aileron moved outboard, requires less deflection for same response, less chance of inducing a stall at low speeds, much lighter stick forces.
-stainless steel drag wires included.
-stainless steel drag wires extend through spars and use simple nut and block attachment system.
-same airfoil as a Cub.
-aluminum, preformed and drilled ribs.
-predrilled, extruded aluminum spars.
-hinges are prefabricated, ready to bolt in position.
-leading and trailing edge aluminum is preformed.
-stainless steel gas tank support straps.
-wing mount hardware ready to bolt on.
-more room between root and fuselage to work in.
-gas tanks in wings TIG welded .040-5052 aluminum and hold a total of 23 U.S. gal/20 Imp. est.
-gas tank shape is accurate and forms the airfoil shape in that area, plumbing installation and routing ensures good fuel flow in steep climbs and dives without needing header tanks.
-aileron pulleys and cable concealed in wing.
-cable does not come through top of wing.
-2 1/2" wider in cockpit area.
-one larger door, 35" tall x 46" wide hinges up to bottom of wing.
-door handles on outside and inside of door.
-baggage floor lowered to bottom longerons.
-high ceiling in baggage area.
-90 lb. baggage capacity.
-deep "V" belly provides good drainage away from longerons and room to route cables under floor.
-belly opening at tail end, can put a garden hose in the front and flush dust and dirt out of the aft end, tail post left exposed so will not trap corrosion causing dirt and moisture.
-flat back on fuselage follows wing contour, creating lift.
-toe brakes, with parking brakes.
-instrument panel easily hinges down for access to instrument backs, is shock mounted, top edge is padded and dash edge fits under top panel flange so it cannot cut pilot in a crash.
-boot cowl (around pilot's feet) easily removable for access by removing 2 piano hinge pins.
-dynafocal or straight engine mount.
-no sheet metal screws - nut plates welded and riveted in mean no screws to come loose or holes in tubing to introduce moisture.
-fuselage sandblasted with extremely fine sand, epoxy primed.
-tail wheel spring front bolt in a welded bushing to keep water out.
-all control stops adjustable, tail stops mate with discs not bellhorn edges to reduce wear.
-fin offset for trim.
-stainless steel tail brace wires.
-extra cable fairleads so cables cannot chip paint on tubes.
-one large handle on the right side of rear of fuselage.
-strength increased in high load areas, closer trusswork in aft fuselage.
-leaf spring landing gear is taller for long prop clearance, also gives increased angle of attack, producing lower takeoff and landing speeds, has wider wheel base, so greater stability.
-steps on landing gear give access to top of wing and easier entry to cockpit.
-front and rear seats fixed in place.
Engine: Lycoming O-360, 180 hp
Hp range: 100 to 180 hp.
Fuel capacity: 23 U.S. gal./ 20 Imp. gal.
Wing span: 36 ft 4 in
Wing area: 190 sq. ft.
Length: 23.5 ft
Height: 7.5 ft
Gross weight; 1800 lb
Empty weight/: 1000 lb
ROC: 1000 fpm
Top speed; 140 mph
Cruise; 100 mph
Stall; 35 mph
Take off distance; 225 ft
Landing distance: 275 ft