NTSB Identification: CEN11LA527
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Friday, July 22, 2011 in Ashtabula, OH
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/11/2012
Aircraft: Snow Quickie 2, registration: N240JS
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 was performing a takeoff as part of a phase 1 test flight after having attempted a previous takeoff that resulted in the airplane not being able to lift off. During the accident takeoff, the airplane was unable to achieve an out-of-ground-effect climb while the airplane's nose pitched up and down. The pilot aborted the climb by reducing power after which the airplane descended, bounced, and veered off the remaining runway. The pilot stated that the airplane engine speed only achieved 2,600 to 2,690 rpm during the test flight and not the expected speed of 3,300 to 3,400 rpm. He said that he thought the rpm would increase with full power and level flight; however, it did not. The pilot used different propeller installations on the airplane in attempt to achieve the desired engine speed. It is likely that an incorrect propeller pitch resulted in an increase in drag and a loss lower of engine speed than expected. According to the Experimental Light Sport Aircraft study, it states in part, “The Phase I flight test period is uniquely challenging for most pilots because they must learn to manage the handling characteristics of an unfamiliar aircraft while also managing the challenges of the flight test environment, including instrumentation that is not yet calibrated, controls that may need adjustment, and possible malfunctions or adverse handling characteristics…”

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

The incorrect propeller pitch and lower-than-expected engine speed that did not allow the airplane to attain a proper climb rate during takeoff, and the subsequent hard landing that occurred when the pilot reduced power.

Full narrative available

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