Deep stall accident due, apparently, to improper canard incidence.

On April 16, 2010, at 0830 Pacific daylight time, an experimental Bibbee Cozy Mark (MK) IV, N68TF, collided with terrain near North Las Vegas, Nevada. The pilot/owner was operating the airplane under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91. The commercial pilot sustained minor injuries. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the wings, fuselage, and empennage. The local personal flight departed the North Las Vegas Airport about 0818. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan had been filed.

The pilot had recently purchased the airplane that had been built by another individual. The airplane had a total time of 410 hours. The pilot had 64 hours as PIC in this make and model. The pilot departed with the intention of determining the minimum speed of the canard equipped airplane at a light weight. He flew to the practice area, and climbed to 7,000 feet. He determined that 67 knots indicated airspeed (KIAS) was the minimum airspeed that the airplane would maintain before the canard stalled. This was 17 knots above the published minimum speed, so the pilot felt that he was near a main wing stall. He accomplished two stalls (canard only) with no abnormalities encountered.During a third stall, the main wing suddenly stalled without warning. The airplane began to sink rapidly in a level to slightly nose high attitude. The pilot immediately applied full nose down elevator as recommended in the operating handbook, but the airplane did not respond. He applied full power, but the airplane remained unresponsive in pitch. He determined that only the rudders remained mildly effective, so he attempted to roll the airplane in order to get the nose down, and break the stall. After two unsuccessful attempts, the airplane remained stalled with a high sink rate. The airplane was nearing the ground, so the pilot leveled the wings. He left the engine at full power, and leveled the wings with the rudder. The airplane impacted the ground in a level attitude, and almost immediately came to a halt. He shut the engine down with the throttle and mixture; he shut off the ignition switches and electrical master switch prior to his egress from the airplane. He was able to walk clear of the wreckage, and call emergency services on his cell phone.

During the postaccident inspection, the pilot reported that he found that the builder of the airplane did not install the canard at the proper angle of incidence, and failed to ensure the proper elevator control deflections. The builder also told the pilot that a mandatory plans change affecting the canard had been complied with, but according to the pilot it had not. The pilot’s operating handbook had also not been updated with a required change that would have highlighted these problems.

The pilot reported that prior to purchase he had the airplane inspected by a company authorized by the current owner of the designer’s plan’s rights to provide builder support for this model of airplane. The purpose of the inspection was to identify discrepancies; however, the inspector did not find any. The pilot reported that he learned that all of the discrepancies had been addressed in newsletters that were sent from the kit manufacturer to builders. None of the newsletters were included with any of the material that the pilot received when he purchased the airplane, and he reported that they had been out of print for four years prior to when he bought the airplane and were no longer available in written form.

| FAA | NTSB initial | NTSB factual | NTSB probable cause | News1 |

Also, this Cozy forum posting where he says it was a deep stall incident.

I've finally settled up with my insurance company and now I can offer up parts of my Cozy IV for sale. These are parts of N68TF that was in the deep stall incident a month ago. The airframe is pretty beat up but there are still a number of usable parts that would make someone building a Cozy a great deal and a great leap forward.

The most noteworthy of the available parts is the engine and associated components. It is an IO-360 A3B6D. I have all the logs on it since it was originally installed in a Mooney M20J. It only has 1945 TT and 49 SMOH. I was still breaking it in with running mineral oil and trying very hard to keep it at 75% power as much as possible. In the stock configuration, this is a 200hp motor. During the last rebuild, which was done by a local shop, I got 4 ECI CermiNil cylinders and sent them to Lycon for flow matching and porting as well as 10:1 pistons. According to Lycon, it should now be 220-235hp and more fuel efficient than stock. I went with CermiNil cylinders since the last ones had some rust and I wanted to make sure that didn't happen again. It has been a great, strong running engine for the past 49 hours. In the crash there was obviously a prop strike on the wooden prop but it didn't even kill the engine. I shut it down right after coming to a halt with the mixture and throttle. There was very little damage to the aircraft aft of the firewall. I dialed the crank the other day and it was less than .001" on the prop flange.

I'm offering the engine itself for $11k OR the engine plus exhaust, accessories, electronic ignition, oil cooler, gascolator, fuel pump, etc set up for a Cozy IV for $12k.

I have a newly refurbished VM-1000 engine monitoring system that I had just bought and hadn't yet installed in the Cozy. It has a brand new display unit that alone cost me $300. It comes with all the sensors (4xcht, 4xegt, ff, oil press, oil temp, oat, amps, volts, maybe more...can't remember). I will sell it for $800.

I have an EPI-800 engine monitoring system that is currently installed in the airplane. I don't know if it is still functional and there were a couple things that weren't working before the accident like the amps gauge and the backlighting. Anyway, if you need spare parts for your EPI-800 I can make you a good deal.

Other possibly usable components are the carbon fiber cowlings, nose gear retract components, misc flight control components, stick grips, electric speed brake, seat cushions (flight tested and proven to save you from severe spinal injury), brakes, wheels, ELT, strobes, airspeed indicator, mag compass, transponder, panel GPS, etc. If you have a specific thing in mind you need, shoot me an email and I'll if I have it.

Please email me at



Posted By: Brett Ferrell
Monday April 12th, 2010 at 9:45 PM

Categories: Accidents
Tags: Accident Cozy IV James Las Vegas N68TF Non-Fatal NV

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