History of Flight

On June 19, 1994 about 1055 eastern standard time, an experimental Kitfox II, N528AB collided with a hangar on takeoff at Chester Airport, Chester, Connecticut. The certificated private pilot was not injured and the airplane was substantially damaged. The personal flight was being operated by the pilot/owner. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. There was no flight plan for the flight being conducted under 14 CFR Part 91.

In the NTSB Form 6120.1/2, the pilot stated,

I was conducting high speed taxi test on runway 35, when the tailwheel holding bracket broke, causing tailwheel to move abruptly to the right, and moving rudder to right, causing aircraft to leave runway, cross grass strip on the right, fly off a 10-foot high earth bank, and on to a hangar door, which stopped the airplane.

The pilot reported the failure of the tailwheel assembly occurred at the weld that attaches the tailwheel spring and fuselage.

The FAA Inspector stated in his report:

...The right main gear was ripped off, and the left main had collapsed. There was substantial damage to both wings...All this aircraft damage seemed consistent with impact. Additionally, I found the tailwheel spring shackle broken. It could not be determined if it was broken prior to impact or if it broke due to an overload when the main gear collapsed. The bottom of the rudder was wrinkled, as if the tailwheel assembly bounced up and struck it. I interviewed the pilot at the scene...[The pilot] stated that he had made the first flight in the aircraft the day before and was intending this, his second flight to be about 2 hours. It would be the first time he had flown the aircraft with full fuel tanks. He taxied out to runway 35 and performed the runup. He said everything appeared normal. He said the wind was down the runway at about 10 knots. After he applied power, he said he felt the tail raise off the runway and settle back down. He said when it came up the second time, he was about 500 [to] 600 feet down the runway. The aircraft veered to the right and ...the left wing came up. He stated it felt like a 45 degree bank to the right. He stated he felt the aircraft was airborne. His best recollection of the airspeed was about 20 knots... .

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