NTSB Identification: DEN01LA020.
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Accident occurred Friday, December 08, 2000 in WEST JORDAN, UT
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/01/2001
Aircraft: Thomas VP-1, registration: N89KD
Injuries: 1 Serious.

NTSB investigators may have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot said he was flight-testing the newly finished homebuilt airplane. The original plans called for a fixed pitch propeller. The pilot said that he had put a manually adjustable pitch propeller on the airplane, and he had adjusted it for cruise flight. He said that once he was airborne, the engine began "lugging" and quickly lost power. He started a right turn to crosswind, and simultaneously began to perform a forced landing. Subsequently, the airplane struck a building and some transmission wires before coming to rest. Postaccident examination of the engine by an FAA inspector revealed that the spark plugs were wet with fuel. The inspector also found heavy carbon deposits in the exhaust stack.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

the lack of suitable terrain for a forced landing. Contributing factors were the total loss of engine power due to the failure of the pilot to adjust the manual propeller pitch to permit the engine to achieve sufficient rpm for sustained flight, and the subsequent fouling of the spark plugs due to the over rich fuel condition.

Full narrative available

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