Aerolite 103

Nemeth Designs

ULTRALIGHTAEROLITE103PISTONAEROWORKS

3.4/5 (941)


The Aerolite 103 is a pusher configuration (rear propeller) lightweight piston-powered single engine aircraft. The empty weight varies from 252 lb (114 kg) to 300 lb (136 kg), with 275 lb (125 kg) useful load depending on the individual configuration. Most existing units are configured with engines that vary from 28-46 hp carbureted engines, however the engine of the unit represented here was based on a Japanese 55 hp twin boxer. The Aerolite 103 is sold either as an assembly kit or as fully assembled aircraft. Therefore every unit differs from one another somewhat. The wings are covered by the builder with pre-sewn polyethylene fabric envelopes. The self-assembly kit does not include powerplant, propeller or instruments hence the wide variety of configurations.

Due to its fragile construction acrobatics are strictly prohibited and the take-off and landing procedures should be performed no faster than 30-32 knots to prevent damage to the frame or the gear assemblies. The air cooled twin-boxer engine has a maximum 55 hp power at of 4200 RPM with air cooling. Operation on full throttle/maximum performance is limited to 15-20 mins depending on the environmental conditions to prevent overheating. Because of the open-cockpit design with unobstructed view and the highest distance per fuel units available the Aerolite 103 ultralight airplane is a perfect hobby aircraft and offers unique flying experience either in real world or in MS Flight Simulator.

The Aerolite 103 is a single-seat, open-cockpit ultralight monoplane created by the American company Aero-Works. The aircraft, which has won a number of awards through the years in its category, derives its name from the section of the Federal Aviation Regulation governing ultralight aircraft, Part 103. Sold as either a fully assembled airplane or as a home-build kit, models of the Aerolite 103 vary in empty weight from 250 to 275 pounds.

The aircraft features a high wing with a span of 26 feet, 10 inches, a tricycle landing gear that is steerable with the aircraft’s rudder pedals, and a 55-horsepower boxer-twin engine that drives a fixed-pitch propeller in a pusher configuration. The frame of the aircraft is constructed of aluminum tubes and the wing, empennage, and control surfaces are covered in Dacron, a type of polyester. The elevator and ailerons are controlled by yoke fitted atop a center control column, the rudder by pedals, and flaps via an overhead crank.

The Aerolite 103 has a cruise speed of 63 miles per hour, a maximum speed of 70 mph, a rate of climb of up to 800 feet per minute, and a range of 120 miles. Designed for those just starting their flying careers -- including those without a license, as is allowed with ultralight aircraft -- the Aerolite 103 also proves a solid performer for aviators with experience in such airframes as the Piper Cub and Cessna 152 and 172. Regardless of skill, those who climb into the cockpit of the Aerolite 103 know it as a machine built for maximum aviation satisfaction, with a gentle, forgiving touch.

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