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EAA AirVenture Today is published by the Experimental Aircraft Association for EAA AirVenture from July 27 - August 3. It is distributed free on the convention grounds as well as other locations in Oshkosh and surrounding communities. Stories and photos are copyrighted 2008 by EAA AirVenture Today and EAA. Reproduction by any means is prohibited without written consent.


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The official daily newspaper of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh

Volume 9, Number 6 August 1, 2008     

The Quest for a new bushplane
By James Wynbrandt

A year after receiving its type certificate, the Kodiak turbine-powered bushplane from Quest Aircraft Co. LLC has arrived at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2008 with a cargo of developments to report. Among the news: The first five Kodiaks have been delivered, the first customers recently completed the company’s FAA/Industry Training Standards (FITS) training course, and the production line is gearing up to build up to 100 aircraft per year.

"Things are working out quite well," said Quest President and CEO Paul Schaller at the company’s exhibit space in the Main Aircraft Display area (Booth 161-163).

The Kodiak was designed specifically to fit the needs of missionary and humanitarian aviation organizations operating in remote locations around the world. It was developed with deposits made by missionary aviation organizations.

"They asked for a plane that would fly in and out of every strip an STOL (short takeoff and landing) Cessna 206 could, but burn jet fuel and carry two to three times the payload of a 206," Schaller said.

The Kodiak’s 3,100-pound useful load easily meets that hauling requirement.

The need for a kerosene-burning aircraft has grown more acute as avgas has become more difficult to obtain in these remote locations. The Pratt & Whitney PT-6 can lift the aluminum aircraft off a rough airstrip in 700 feet at its gross weight of 6,750 pounds.

Sandpoint, Idaho-based Quest reports it has more than 100 orders on its books, and the market has expanded beyond the missionary and humanitarian missions the aircraft was designed for. As evidence, the company is showcasing its Timberline interior, which the company describes as "rugged refinement," well-suited to the private purchaser, in the aircraft at its display area. Quest also offers an executive-style interior with club seating and cabinetry. The trike fixed-gear aircraft can also be outfitted with floats. With an integrated G1000 glass panel that will soon incorporate synthetic vision, the Kodiak brings high-tech capabilities to a high adventure aircraft.

"It’s not utility category," Schaller said, "but more of a utility kind of aircraft for a variety of different applications."

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