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Considering a Long-EZ ->Getting in rear seat


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I'm considering selling my RV12 and purchasing a Long-EZ.  LOVE my RV12, but not it's range or speed.  Anyway, my wife is 5' 3".  Curious on if there's a preferred method of getting in and out of rear seat?  I was with an owner of a Long-EZ the other day and while I sat in front, I didn't think to try sitting in back.  I did note that it looks like it wouldn't be easy to get in or out.  I'm assuming it's not good to climb on the strake.  So is it easiest to first step on front seat and then swing a leg over to the back?  If so, that seems like it would be tough for someone with shorter legs?

Any other techniques folks use/recommend?



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Hi John

I am about 5'7" and 166 lb.  I finished a project a few years ago.   I worried about that question all of the time I was working.    Finally I got 2 guys that were good pilots to get the hours flown off and get some feel and numbers done.   FINALLY I went, as a passenger, with one guy to an airport with a restaurant.   No trouble getting in because I had a plastic ladder at OLM and he put it in the hangar.   Good lunch.   Now how to get in without the plastic ladder?   It was near impossible and your wife is shorter!.  Finally, when I was hanging on the headrest, he pushed my butt.   I guess you can push her butt but she is shorter.

OK, I ordered a Wilhelmson retraction/extention unit.   I installed it.   That almost killed the project; it ain't easy and I nearly gave up.   The large bolt which the nose gear swings on, was frozen in.   Using an electric saw, I cut it; then had two pieces still frozen in place.   So I cut the bolt on the opposite side.  The only way that I finished was to find a superior blade for the saw; ordinary blades just are not strong/sharp enough to do the job.   So then I got it installed but had a lot of trouble with the wiring.  Finally Mr. Wilhelmson saved my butt with the  wiring problems.   So , when it was finished, I set the Longeze with the nose about 8 or 10 inches off the ground, climb in the front, climb over to the back, and sit down.   My buddy raised the nose a little more and climbed in, then raised the nose completely, straped in,  checked ATIS, started, etc,   It works very well.

BTW  my buddy liked the Longeze so well that he bought his own!   It had flown some hours, already.  I went with him by commercial.  On the way back he knew how I had set the nose 8 inches off the ground so he did the same while I was in the back seat.   He was outside; when I shifted my weight, the RAF nose gear stripped several teeth.  UGGH.   I had the necessary experience as I had done the same stripping years before on my Longeze.   So we got the nose off the ground, borrowed tools,  and bolted it in place; he had to fly 800 miles with the nose gear extended.

So get a Wilhelmson unit and install it; get an experienced builder to help or you will have months of work.  If you are lucky, the large bolt will slide right out.   If you don't make stupid mistakes like I did, it is a simple job. 

OR get a STRONG nose gear part from the Cozy girrrls and fix the damn RAF nose mechanism the way it should have been done in the 1st place.



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A rollover bar is not too hard to refit and it really helps getting out of the back seat--it is something strong to grab onto.    Some pics here  https://www.canardzone.com/forums/topic/18661-kents-long-ez-project/?do=findComment&comment=63160

Some kind of sticky pad will help getting in the back seat when the nose is down.  I have a bathtub mat I use for that and to protect the strake when I'm working in the back.



Cozy IV N13AM-750 hrs, Long-EZ-85 hrs and sold

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