NTSB Identification: SEA07LA155.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, June 12, 2007 in Lodi, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/29/2007
Aircraft: Quad City Ultralight Aircraft Challenger II, registration: N204DC
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The pilot said that he was maneuvering at 2,000 feet above the ground when the right wing separated from the aircraft. He said that the aircraft was equipped with a Ballistic Recovery System (BRS) emergency parachute, which he immediately deployed. The pilot said that the fuselage and left wing came to rest in a grape vineyard, and he was able to walk away uninjured. Postaccident examination of the wreckage, by a fellow Challenger II pilot, revealed that the "rony bracket" that attached the forward lift strut to the fuselage failed. The bracket was not attached per the Challenger II building manual. The manufacturer's instructions state that the bolt should only be snug. It also warns to not over tighten these bolts holding the brackets to the hollow tubes and that there should be no more than two threads showing past the nut. The bolt on this rony bracket had at least five to six threads showing. Additionally, the end of the hollow tube was deformed into an oval shape, and not round. The remaining rony brackets did have only two threads showing and they could be rotated by hand, per the manufacturer's instructions.

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

The improper assembly of the rony bracket which attached the right wing forward lift strut to the fuselage, the subsequent failure of that bracket, and separation of the right wing from the aircraft.

Full narrative available

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