It's been a long time since we could announce the first flight of a new production aircraft... but we'll take whatever progress we can find... and in the case of the Great Lakes by Waco Classic, we're excited to see an outstanding old aircraft design, updated and re-certified for production and sale to the GA community.
The brand new Great Lakes made its first flight, Sunday, June 9th under the pilotage of Gabriel Valim and the watchful eye of Waco Boss, Peter Bowers. Outside of an alternator that was giving the Waco Team some fits, the aircraft was reported to have flown exceedingly well, with specific appreciation for its having rigged out well right from the start. Basic performance and handling parameters were also reported to have been met or exceeded in the initial test flight (not surprising considering the experience the Waco built team has earned over the years). The aircraft will resume test flying this week and it expected to show up at this year's Oshkosh EAA Fly-In (so long as the FAA doesn't start charging pilots extra just to fly in...).
Waco Classic has earned a stellar rep for many years with their hand-crafted re-creations of the WACO YMF-5D. The company boasts that it is the only company in the world that produces NEW FAA and EASA certified open cockpit classic biplanes. The Great Lakes 2T-1A-2 has a list price of $245,520 and comes equipped with a 180 HP Lycoming AEIO-360-B1G6 and aerobatic Hartzell CS Prop. Basic instrumentation includes a TRIG TY91 VHF Com Radio, TRIG TT22 Mode-S-Transponder, JPI EDM 930 integrated electronic engine instrumentation, and a Garmin AERA 500 WAAS GPS receiver. The open cockpit Great Lakes seats two, in tandem, an cruises 120 mph, climbs 1400 fpm and has a range of 260 nm.