This was a big week for the Rutan Aircraft Flying Experience. RAFE volunteers gathered to help move a new member of our fleet over to the RAFE Ellington Canard Base hanger. Former Space Shuttle Astronaut Ken Cameron donated his Cozy III making RAFE’s lineup SEVEN flying aircraft!
N423CZ has an outstanding pedigree having originally been built by highly regarded canard builder Chris Esselstyn. Though not truly a “Rutan design” the Cozy line of side by side canards, eare fundamentally the same aircraft with side by side seating. Same wings, same canard, same type of engine, landing gear ect. Nat Puffer, designer of the original Cozy “kind of” plagiarized Burts LongEZ plans but it was all worked out between the two and another variation to the LongEZ was born.
In addition to adding another aircraft to our fleet, the Cozy III is FAR 91.109 compliant with full dual controls. This means the Canard Flight Academy has expanded to Houston. Those interested in checking out in a Rutan design have the option of flying in the Speed Canard in Covington, Tn or a Cozy III in Houston, Tx with highly experienced canard pilot CFI's in both locations.
We’re extremely excited about this new addition and tremendously grateful to Ken for his support. How fitting that this aircraft, once owned by a NASA Space Shuttle Commander, based at Ellington Space Port, is now part of the Rutan Aircraft Flying Experience, the only 501c3 non-profit dedicated to Burt Rutans Homebuilt designs, the Homebuilts that led to Space!