World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article


Article Id: WHEBN0006528005
Reproduction Date:

Title: Long-Ez  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Steve Wright Stagger-Ez
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


Long-EZ belonging to NOAA
Role Homebuilt aircraft
National origin United States of America
Manufacturer Rutan Aircraft Factory
Designer Burt Rutan
First flight June 12, 1979[1]

The Rutan Model 61 Long-EZ is a homebuilt aircraft with a canard layout designed by Burt Rutan's Rutan Aircraft Factory. It is derived from the VariEze, which was first offered to homebuilders in 1976. The prototype, N79RA[2] of the Long-EZ first flew on June 12, 1979.


Changes from the VariEze include a larger main wing with modified Eppler 1230 airfoil and less sweep—the canard uses the same GU25-5(11)8 airfoil as the VariEze—larger strakes containing more fuel and baggage storage, slightly wider cabin, and the ability to use a Lycoming 108 hp engine with no nose ballast. Plans were offered from 1980 to 1985. As of late 2005, approximately 700 Long EZ's are FAA registered in the USA.

The aircraft is designed for fuel-efficient long-range flight, with a range of just over 2,000 miles (3,200 km).[3] It can fly for over ten hours and up to 1,600 miles (2,600 km) on 52 gallons (200 liters) of fuel.[4] Equipped with a rear-seat fuel tank, a Long-EZ has flown for 4,800 miles (7,700 kilometers).

The pilot sits in a semi-reclined seat and controls the Long-EZ by means of a side-stick controller situated on the right-hand console. In addition to having an airbrake on the underside, the twin tail's wing-tip rudders can be deflected outwards to act as auxiliary airbrakes.[4]

In 1996 Burt Rutan Awarded TERF Inc. the job of publishing the plans for the Long EZ and other of his aircraft under The Rutan Aircraft Factory CD ROM Encyclopedia for the purpose of further assisting new builders and maintenance for existing builders.

Operational history

In 1997 Dick Rutan and Mike Melvill flew two Long-EZ aircraft on an around-the-world flight. Some legs of this flight extended over 14 hours in the air.


An extensivley modified redesign using Long-EZ wings with a fuselage modified for side-by-side seating, retractable landing gear, and larger automotive engine conversion powerplants.[5]
XCOR Aerospace modified a Long-EZ and replaced the engine with twin liquid-fueled rocket engines to form a flight test vehicle called the EZ-rocket, which was used as a proof-of-concept demonstrator. Initially, a follow-on version called the "Mark-1 X-Racer, was going to be developed for the Rocket Racing League,[6] but the Velocity SE was subsequently selected as the airframe for the Rocket Racer, rather than the Long-EZ.[7][8]
Twin EZ
Ivan Shaw built a Long-EZ and then converted it into a "Twin-EZ", an aircraft with twin wing-mounted Norton wankel engines (precursors to the MidWest AE series).[9] Shaw, a Yorkshireman, later designed the Europa XS kitplane.
Long ESA
A 258hp electric engine conversion. On 19 July 2012, pilot Chip Yates achieved 202.6mph in level flight, making the aircraft the fastest man carrying electric powered aircraft.[10][11]

Accidents and incidents

Singer-songwriter John Denver died while flying a LongEz on October 12, 1997. The NTSB believes that he inadvertently pushed on his right rudder pedal while twisting to the left in his seat as he struggled to operate the fuel selector valve.[12] Contributing factors in the crash were other pilot errors, a design that led to an overly optimistic pre-flight fuel-check estimate,[13] a known defective (very hard to turn) fuel valve, and non-standard placement of the fuel selector valve by the kit plane's builder, at variance with Burt Rutan's specs.

Denver was aware of the faulty valve prior to take off and had previously flown the aircraft only for approximately thirty minutes in an orientation flight the day before the accident, although he was an experienced pilot. The NTSB cited Denver's unfamiliarity with the aircraft and his failure to have the aircraft refueled as causal factors in the accident.[12] The aerodynamics of this unusual aircraft did not play a role in Denver's crash.

The author James Gleick crash-landed his Long-EZ at Greenwood Lake Airport, in West Milford, New Jersey in 1997.[14] Gleick was seriously injured and the passenger, his 8-year old son Harry, was killed.[15]


Data from Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1982–83[1]

General characteristics
  • Crew: 1 Pilot
  • Capacity: 1 Passenger
  • Length: 16 ft 10 in (5.12 m)
  • Wingspan: 26 ft 1 in (7.96 m)
  • Height: 7 ft 10 in (2.40 m)
  • Wing area: 81.99 sq ft (7.617 m2)
  • Empty weight: 710 lb (322 kg)
  • Max takeoff weight: 1,325 lb (601 kg)
  • Fuel capacity: 52 US Gal (197 L)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Lycoming O-235 air-cooled flat-four engine, 115 hp (86 kW)


  • Maximum speed: 185 mph (298 km/h; 161 kn) (max cruise)
  • Cruise speed: 144 mph (125 kn; 232 km/h) (40% power)
  • Range: 2,010 mi (1,747 nmi; 3,235 km)
  • Service ceiling: 27,000 ft (8,230 m)
  • Rate of climb: 1,750 ft/min (8.9 m/s)

See also

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era


External links

  • Canard aircraft site ( dedicated to Rutan aircraft
  • Bruce Tognazzini's article on the Denver crash
  • Wayne Blacklers Long-EZ
  • Building and flying a LongEZ
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.