Phil Smith
  • Male
  • Buhl, ID
  • United States
Share on Facebook

Phil Smith's Friends

  • Anthony Fortney
  • Jon Humberd
  • Jonathan Kreilich
  • Kevin Lippert
  • Efe Cem Elci
  • Randy Boykin
  • Jon Crew
  • Martin Bima
  • Joe Spencer
  • Joseph Pedginski
  • Bob Curavo
  • Jerry Griego
  • Paul Sanders
  • Pete Stange
  • david shrader

Phil Smith's Discussions


Started this discussion. Last reply by Phil Smith Jul 15, 2021. 8 Replies

Tiger Teeth

Started this discussion. Last reply by Jim and Amelia Isaacs Mar 22, 2021. 3 Replies

Exhaust pipe wrap

Started this discussion. Last reply by Neil Cooper Nov 19, 2021. 14 Replies


Welcome, Phil Smith!

Latest Activity

Phil Smith posted a photo

New Sharky - A 10 Warthog look

OK, so it was a cold winter last year and bored with COVID isolation.
Feb 10, 2022
Phil Smith posted a discussion


I probably have the old radiator as supplied by Zenith in a FWF, vertical orientation, kit ca 2007 - 8.I understand that there is a "new improved  and heavy duty"  radiator that would fit the engine / cowl of my CH 701:  kit 7-6638, Rotax ULS (sn 5648830) I currently have, possibly,   pn 955-697. I will check the parts list when I get to the hangar.  In the mean time I need ideas.  Have seem radiators for Rotax on the Ebay and other sites.I am desperate to get a little more cooling for the…See More
Jul 2, 2021
Phil Smith posted a status
"Long cold winter...hmmm, no problems!!!"
Apr 11, 2021
Phil Smith posted photos
Apr 11, 2021
Phil Smith posted a discussion

Tiger Teeth

An A-10 Wart Hog version of tiger teeth...Ala P-40sMust scare birds out of the way...haven't hit one...yet!See More
Mar 19, 2021
Phil Smith posted a discussion

Exhaust pipe wrap

What is the general consensus of Rotax 912 ULS operators about wrapping the exhaust pipes with"automotive exhaust manifold tape" to reduce the under cowl temps... looking for ways to get rid of heat to reduce my oil temp slightly on high ambient OAT days.What did you see or experienceWhat product and from which source did you useAny other caveatsStill grinninPhil Smith CH 70wonderfulBuhl, IDSee More
May 24, 2020
Phil Smith posted a discussion

Five Year Rubber

OK folks - what are you doing, have you done or would you like to do on the ROTAX 912ULS Five Year Rubber change out on an EAB airplane.  I know there are kits from ROTAX, CPS, Aircraft Spruce and others - I am looking into all the various ideas and especially sources you may have used and or are planning to use.  Not necessarily the lowest cost but economical and efficient.There are alternate sources for the carb boots, also rubber hose sources - I have seen them from time to time but have not…See More
May 12, 2020
Phil Smith posted a photo

CH 701 with 21 inch Desser tundra tires

21 inch tires on all three gear legs. Had to modify the front fork. See mod in my pictures on the Zenith Site
Dec 26, 2019
Phil Smith posted photos
Dec 19, 2019
Phil Smith posted a status
"New idea just thinking Also added as my profile shot"
Nov 12, 2019
Phil Smith posted a discussion

Tundra Tires X 3

After I fitted out the mains  on my stock CH 701 with 21 800X600 Tundra tires from Dresser I immediately knew that something had to be done to level the plane. First I extended the stock nose wheel fork two inches at the axle and used the golf cart tire as supplied in the kit which worked to get the nose up...a little.  Still didn't like the thin walled golf cart tires.Then I knew that to do it right I needed to add the 21 800X600 tire on the nose.  By pre-planning and luck it all fits. (the…See More
Aug 8, 2019

Profile Information

Aircraft Model
Project Status
Building From
Engine installed (or plan to install)
Rotax 912
Building Experience
Have worked on airplanes before
Flying Experience
Commercial / CFI
Building and Flying Info / Your Profession / Other Background Info
Retired USAF pilot after 28 years on active duty, USAF Reserve and Michigan ANG, then flew cargo world wide for nine years in L382 Hercules and 747-200F freighters, along the way rebuilt several airplanes and got my A&P. Decided the most fun I have ever had flying was low and slow in an old J3 Cub. Didn't like the cost of a J3 vs the performance so opted for the CH 701 which used to stare me in the face on the inside back cover of "Kit Planes" magazine. Even thought that it was the uglyest airplane I had ever seen...but fell in love anyway because it fits my six foot, 280 lb frame.Took three years, eight months and 20 days start to sign off on September 20, 2010. Ran out of parts and excuses on November 5, 2010 and flew first flight of fifteen minutes. Now have a little over three hours on bird - no squawks - and am waiting for Idaho weather to alow further adventures.

Now have ten hours and about 14 landings. All is well except for the tire questions that you might look up on the matronics web site under 701801 Still grinnin - but this Idaho wx sux when you're trying to fly.

Now over 100 hours (APR 2014) and still amazed that you can have this much fun for so little cost.

Now airframe and engine time is over 148 and still running great. Look below for some of the things that I have done to clean up problem areas.

Time now is 210.6 hrs....simple maintenance throw in some mogas and have a great time.

Time now over 260.0 hours with no real problems. Have done a few mods along the way.Two most satisfying are the "DELTAgs' that I added to the top and the 21 800X600 tires. Both these and others covered in my blogs messages and site.

Still Grinnin!!!
Home Airport (ie. KMYJ)

Just went over 15 hours on last Sunday.  Still no major problems.  One word of caution: if you have the "old style Black Rubber" gear mounting spacers take a good look at how yours are doing.  At thirteen hours I noticed that mine were cracking and changed them out for spacers provided by Zenith.  See my three blogs with pictures in Matronics under Zenith 801701-lists. If you have any questions drop me a note on line.  In fact if you have the old black spacers I suggest rather strongly you get down under the plane and look at them.  Take a look at what I saw at the angle bracket line and what they looked like when I pulled them out.

Still grinnin


Phil Smith's Photos

  • Add Photos
  • View All

Phil Smith's Videos

  • Add Videos
  • View All

Phil Smith's Blog

New Profile Picture

Posted on June 20, 2017 at 6:35pm 0 Comments

Scene from the film…


Watch where you pull!!!

Posted on June 8, 2017 at 12:48pm 1 Comment


I installed the strut on the pilots door pictured aboove and soon after tried to pull it down from the front edge about a foot outboard like I always did with the suction cup...crack...split.  The door - original fiberglass and Plexiglas bubble door supplied by Zenith - broke at the fiberglass corner and radiated out down and aft in the Plexiglas.  Quite a bit of bending torque is applied to the bad. Stop drilled the crack, sealed it with "special…


Recent trim work on 701

Posted on November 17, 2013 at 11:18am 1 Comment

Just to update all of you that are tweaking your CH 701 and possibly your 750.  These mods probably don't add speed or short field capability - LOL - but were done to clean up the original construction.  First of all go to "my Photos" so you can see what I am talking about,


I never liked the bubble door to front post fit that I created in the original build it was noisy and drafty especially in winter. So the first item was to build new trim strips for the front pillar to…


701 Heater

Posted on February 14, 2013 at 6:00pm 5 Comments

Update on the Zenith supplied cabin heater for my 701.  Installed it in December and it works as advertised...actually a little bit better than advertised as I only need about 1/3 heat on days at 30 f outside. A couple of things: I went down to my aircraft supply store...Coop Plumbing section...and found a 45 elbow in black plastic that fit over the  heater firewall tube perfectly.  I then cut a slot in the elbow OD…


Comment Wall (4 comments)

You need to be a member of Zenith Aircraft Builders and Flyers to add comments!

Join Zenith Aircraft Builders and Flyers

At 2:48am on February 19, 2019, Anthony Fortney said…
Impressive resume Phil! Congrats on a stellar career! I did answer the question...Zenith sells an oversized front fork for you 21” tires.
At 11:39pm on February 17, 2019, Anthony Fortney said…
Hey Phil! Nice conversing with you man. I was a KC 135 Boom Operator and C-130 FE for 26 years!
At 6:39pm on January 8, 2013, Randy Boykin said…

I am curious what you put on the inside of the cabin, looks like some kind of insulation.

At 8:55am on March 15, 2009, Robert Pelland said…
Welcome to the fray Phil.

By looking at your photo , you sure got off to a good start in the engine departement.. :o)

Robert Pelland
701 & 750 Scratch

New from Zenith:

Zenith Planes For Sale 

Classified listing for buying or selling your Zenith building or flying related stuff...

Custom Instrument Panels
for your Zenith

Custom instrument panels are now available directly from Zenith Aircraft Company exclusively for Zenith builders and owners. Pre-cut panel, Dynon and Garmin avionics, and more.

Zenith Homecoming Tee:

Zenair Floats

Flying On Your Own Wings:
A Complete Guide to Understanding Light Airplane Design, by Chris Heintz

Builder & Pilot Supplies:

Aircraft Insurance:


West Coast USA:

Pro Builder Assistance:


Transition training:

Lavion Aero

K&S Aviation Services

Aircraft Spruce & Specialty for all your building and pilot supplies!

How to videos from

Developed specifically for Zenith builders (by a builder) these videos on DVD are a great help in building your own kit plane by providing practical hands-on construction information. Visit for the latest DVD titles.

© 2024   Created by Zenith.Aero.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service