MakerPlane, a new organization for open source (full sized) aviation

From BoingBoing, news of a new organization that uses some of the same open source principles we use here, but for manned aircraft:

"MakerPlane is an open source aviation organization which will enable people to build and fly their own safe, high quality, reasonable cost plane using advanced personal manufacturing equipment such as CNC mills and 3D printers. The project will also include open source avionics software to enable state-of-the-art digital flight instruments and display capabilities. Basically we are designing an aircraft that can be built on a CNC mill at home, or at a makerspace which is easy to assemble and quick to build. The plans and instructions will be available for free to anyone that wants them!"

MakerPlane is an open source aviation project which will enable people to build and fly their own safe, high quality, reasonable cost plane using advanced personal manufacturing equipment such as CNC mills and 3D printers. The project will also include open source avionics software to enable state-of-the-art digital flight instruments and display capabilities.

Basically we are designing an aircraft that can be built on a computer controlled mill at home, or at a makerspace which is easy to assemble and quick to build. The plans and instructions will be available for free to anyone that wants them!

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Comment by Maxime Carrier on August 20, 2012 at 7:23pm

That look like the cricri : http://www.cricri.zoomshare.com/

Interesting project tought.

Comment by Rob_Lefebvre on August 20, 2012 at 8:17pm

Monroe, even if it was perfectly safe, I wouldn't be seen in that thing! ;)

Comment by Rigel on August 21, 2012 at 12:11am

Small doesn't mean unsafe.  The cricri is a very well designed aircraft with amazing performances.  Plus you have the added benefit of twin engine redundancy...and yes it will keep flying on just one engine.  We had two at our airfield with no issues whatsoever.


Developer
Comment by Randy on August 21, 2012 at 2:13am

I'm pretty sure the open source stuff can be as good quality as the professional stuff but you really need someone (or a few peopel) at the top who are in control and ensure that safety/quality comes first.

Comment by John Nicol on August 21, 2012 at 5:57pm

Hi Guys,  thanks very much for your interest.  Yes, we have a professional aerospace engineer looking after the design of the aircraft and because it is a public open source environment, lots of other eyes on the design as well.  Probably the first time that a design has been opened up like this.  Just one thing that our design doesn't look anything like the Cri Cri, so not sure where that one is coming from!   Ours is a full-sized 2-seat, high winged light sport aircraft with a large engine.  The Cri-Cri is a single seat low wing aircraft about the size of a baseball with 2 model aircraft engines!  The rather goofy photo (sigh) above is me holding a half-finished 1:5th scale model that was scraped off our website.   Thanks again!

John

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