Thursday, March 29, 2018

Kitfox Super Sport, N233TD: Accident occurred September 21, 2017 at Old Forge Airport (NK26), Herkimer County, New York

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Albany, New York

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms

National Transportation Safety Board - Aviation Accident Factual Report

http://registry.faa.gov/N233TD

Location: Old Forge, NY
Accident Number: GAA17CA554
Date & Time: 09/21/2017, 1545 UTC
Registration: N233TD
Aircraft: THOMAS J MURRAY KITFOX SUPER SPORT
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Nose over/nose down
Injuries: 2 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

Analysis 

According to the pilot in the experimental, amateur-built, tailwheel-equipped airplane, he touched down on a turf surface runway, and the airplane bounced. When the airplane descended to the surface, the right main landing gear wheel and brake assembly separated from the landing gear leg. The pilot reported that the airplane "skidded down" the runway and nosed over.

The pilot reported that he had recently installed tundra tires on the airplane and that the four bolts that came with the tundra tire kit were not long enough to properly secure the wheel and brake assembly to the landing gear leg. He recalled that he used four bolts that were longer; however, they were not provided by the manufacturer. He asserted that the nuts he used to retain the bolts were provided in the wheel assembly kit.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the right-wing strut and the left-wing spar. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The separation of the wheel assembly during landing due to the pilot's use of improper retaining nuts when he installed the tundra tires. 

Findings

Aircraft
Wheel/ski/float - Failure (Cause)

Personnel issues
Installation - Pilot (Cause)

Factual Information

History of Flight

Landing-flare/touchdown
Abnormal runway contact

Landing-landing roll
Sys/Comp malf/fail (non-power)
Nose over/nose down (Defining event)

According to the pilot in the experimental amateur built, tailwheel-equipped airplane, he touched down on a turf surface runway and the airplane bounced.

When the airplane descended to the surface, the right main landing gear wheel and brake assembly separated from the landing gear leg. The pilot reported that the airplane "skidded down" the runway and nosed over.

He reported that he had recently installed tundra tires on the airplane, and that the four bolts that came with the tundra tire kit, were not long enough to properly secure the wheel and brake assembly to the landing gear leg. He recalled that he used four bolts that were longer, however, they were not provided by the manufacturer. He asserted that the nuts that were used to retain the bolts were provided in the wheel assembly kit.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the right-wing strut and the left-wing spar. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 62, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: None
Last FAA Medical Exam:
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:  07/05/2016
Flight Time:   (Estimated) 180 hours (Total, all aircraft), 113 hours (Total, this make and model), 8 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 4 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: THOMAS J MURRAY
Registration: N233TD
Model/Series: KITFOX SUPER SPORT SUPER SPORT
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2014
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental Light Sport
Serial Number: KA12155233
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 1
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 09/01/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1320 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 113 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: C126 installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: 233
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 115 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KGTB, 688 ft msl
Observation Time: 1956 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 38 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site:  301°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: 27°C / 16°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 8 knots, 360°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.08 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Fulton, NY (FZY)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Old Forge, NY (NK26)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1000 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: OLD FORGE (NK26)
Runway Surface Type: Grass/turf
Airport Elevation: 1753 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 09
IFR Approach: Visual
Runway Length/Width: 3200 ft / 100 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop; Straight-in

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Minor
Latitude, Longitude:  43.725278, -74.976111 (est)

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