Arion LS-1 Lightning

Talk about airplanes! At last count, there are 39 (and growing) FAA certificated S-LSA (special light sport aircraft). These are factory-built ready to fly airplanes. If you can't afford a factory-built LSA, consider buying an E-LSA kit (experimental LSA - up to 99% complete).

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Re: Arion LS-1 Lightning

Postby BrianL99 » Sun Sep 27, 2015 7:33 pm

Hasn't the Australian government, grounded all airplanes with the Jabiru engine?

The President (of founder?) of Jabiru was one of the original investors in Arion, which is why the airplane has that engine.

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Re: Arion LS-1 Lightning

Postby rgstubbsjr » Sun Sep 27, 2015 9:47 pm

Castoring nosewheel. Toe brakes both sides, handles very well on the ground.
The plane I tested had no BRS, so the weight penalty was minimum.
With 2 up, I could climb at over 1,000 fpm.

No, Jabirus aren't grounded. Most of the issues in Australia are political, not mechanical.

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Re: Arion LS-1 Lightning

Postby zaitcev » Wed Sep 30, 2015 8:44 am

Remember that Aussie gov. grounded all Bonanzas recently, too. They are ridiculously trigger-happy, but they weathervane with the best of them.

As far as LS-1 goes, I was offered a 1/4 of a Lightning. The current owners swear that it's no big deal to fly and land, just a shade hotter than most LSAs. It's not a Lancair anyway.

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Re: Arion LS-1 Lightning

Postby Mark Gregor » Sun Nov 01, 2015 8:58 am

We just traded a 2012 Lightning LS-1 in on a new Tecnam Astore. It has around 400 hours, no damage history.
Was originally a factory demo plane and looks to be very well taken care of. Priced to sell at $67,500.00

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Tecnam US Inc.

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Re: Arion LS-1 Lightning

Postby c162pilot » Thu Nov 05, 2015 8:38 pm

Hi Jake, would be interested in your opinion of the Astore. Which engine and avionics did you choose?

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Re: Arion LS-1 Lightning

Postby Jack Tyler » Sun Nov 08, 2015 6:57 am

Richard, depending on how genuine is your interest in the Lightning, I don't think I'd consider buying any Jab-powered a/c without first mining the recreational flying forum centered on Australian aviation. You'll find it here:

Jab's performance history is quite checkered over a lengthy period of time and includes many incidents in Jabiru brand aircraft, which one would think should be well designed to accommodate the Jab-built engine. Incidents span across home-built, factory-built, privately flown and training-mission aircraft. And there are also many happy Jabiru engine owners, too. It's always seemed to me that one can gain a perspective on the build quality of Jab planes and engines if you just look at Bundaberg on Google Earth and read a bit about this small, relatively remote town. It's not like they have a lot of technical depth available in the job market in Bundy, and one key person leaving the factory might have a ripple effect for a while on how things are built.

Unlike Howard, I wouldn't put much faith in what you learn from visiting the LS-1 importer/assembler. I've visited with them at Sebring and Sun 'n Fun, found them to be nice folks and proud of their product (and the Jab a/c line, as well) but they sell planes. Instead, I'd seek out some current - and especially, former - owners, burrow in on the few key Q's you have, visit with a few of them to beg or perhaps exchange rides, and then form your own opinion. I would not invest nearly the same time if shopping for a Rotax-powered a/c as I would a Jab-powered one.

Whether you evaluate the numbers, inspect the cockpit layout/volume/design, or just stand back and look at the Lightning, it's pretty obviously an a/c with an intentional, fairly narrow mission. 'Fast fun' might best sum it up. Some a/c - LSA or certified - have a fairly wide mission envelope, which makes them adaptable for a given owner and also more marketable to the buyer population. Other a/c - take a Just Highlander Super-STOL for example - have a much narrower mission envelope but perform much better within that envelope as a result. Seems to me the Lightning falls into that latter category.
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