Ritz Standard A ultralight aircraft, Ritz Standard A experimental aircraft, Ritz Standard A experimental light sport aircraft (ELSA), Light Sport Aircraft Pilot News newsmagazine.

Light Sport Aircraft Pilot is a directory of aircraft that generally fit into what are described as ultralight aircraft, advanced ultralight aircraft, light sport aircraft, experimental light sport aircraft, experimental aircraft, amateur built aircraft, ELSA or homebuilt aircraft in the United States and Canada. These include weight shift aircraft, more commonly known as trikes, powered parachutes, and powered para-gliders.

Light Sport Aircraft Pilot

Ritz Standard A Index

Ritz Standard A Pictures

Ritz Standard A Video

Ritz Standard A ultralight, experimental lightsport, amateur built aircraft.

Ritz Standard A - no longer in production, no longer in business.

The following taken from a Ritz Aircraft brochure.

During the late seventies, when they started converting hang gliders to power, I was alarmed at the dangers of the floppy sails and wire jobs, and in protest I designed and built a rigid wing ultralight constructed mainly of wood with tight covering.

With a 36 foot wing span, standard fuselage with seat inside, 7 hp engine, and total weight of 92 pounds, it was quite strong and flew very stably and safely.

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In flying this plane, all the remembrances came back of the many enjoyable years I'd spent building and flying planes sincethe early '30s, and I determined to try to develop and simplify the construction systems used, to make it possible for many others to also enjoy the sport of flying as I had.

To keep the cost and weight down, I was using an all wood construction, with a strong emphasis on geodetic structure such as we'd used so much back in the thirties. Out of my efforts was evolved what I call "structure-in-the-slots", a system of slots and mating pieces machined for fast, simple and clampless assembly. One unit after another was designed to this system ? wing ribs, spars, leading and trailing edges, fuselage formers, longerons, and assembly structure.

After four years of development, and the building of eight planes, the plane that finally evolved was called the Ritz Standard "A," and retains the 36 foot wing span with 3 axis control. After trying many different engines, we settled on the 252CC Zenoah engine as the best in the size we needed. This 22 hp engine coupled with the low drag of the plane is ample to get the plane to the 65 mph maximum speed allowed.

The relatively low price of wood versus aluminum or plastic, enables a plane or kit to be priced considerable lower, and with the present booming in ultralight prices, the difference is outstanding.

In the hey-day of the light-plane ? back in the '30s ? practically all planes were built of wood, and the art was advanced to a very high degree. There are few planes built now days that come anywhere near to the excellence of construction that was practiced in those days. Some of the planes we built in the thirties are still flying ? 50 years later. One of the reasons for this is that wood does not fatigue as metal does, and if properly cared for, will literally last a lifetime.

Coupled with the lightweight, durability and the longevity of the wood plane is its relative ease of construction and also its low cost. However, one of the basic problems with most wood aircraft construction is that they are highly labor intensive, so this was one of the areas where we did a lot of research. The end result was a system of slots and grooves in all structural members which then mated with truss strips and geodetic strips epoxied in the slots ? without any laborious clamping ? permits a very fast and simple assembly with great strength.

For example ? the 32 wing ribs (which usually take about 8 hours per rib to construct) can literally all be assembled in one evening using the "structure-in-the-slots" technique. Included in the kit is one completed rib sample to get the novice started easily. The wing spars can also be easily assembly in one evening, and the third evening you can start to assemble the wing structure. When the wing is assembled with the geodetic strips and thoroughly dry (overnight), the wing structure ? before covering ? is so strong that with a man at each end of the wing, it cannot be twisted even 1/2 of an inch!! The covering of regular lightweight aircraft dacron is simply glued in place and shrunk with a medium hot household iron to take out the wrinkles and taut the covering beautifully.

The main structural members are macninea OT ponaerosa pine, which is very close to spruce in weight and strength, anain , much more reasonable in cost. The curved pieces such as the rib caps, wing and stab tip bows, and fuselage nose are laminated of multi-ply poplar or aspen veneer. The cantilever landing gear is laminated of hard maple veneer for maximum strength and durability. This pre-molded unit is completely machined and sanded-ready to be bolted on to the fuselage and wheels.

Practically the only structural work that needs to be done is snipping the geodetic strips to length with a small hand tool which we furnish, applying the glue and slipping the parts together to set up overnight.

A very minimum of tools is required, such as a carpenter's snap line, a small stapler, a small electric drill and bits, a small square, small wrenches, sandpaper, and etc.

All of the metal fittings are completely machined and welded, ready to be bolted or epoxied to the main structure. Most of the fittings are of aluminum, but in all the high stress and vibration subject areas, 4130 chrome moly steel is used for safety and fatigue resistance.

We chose the Zenoah 22 hp engine after many tests of various engines, and found it to be one of the best engines available. We have several hundred hours of flying time with the Zenoah engines, and have not had the slightest bit of trouble in anyway.

A close inspection of this crafts' wing will give you a clue to its superior performance. The carefully chosen airfoil ? one of the designers own foils that has been used successfully for many years ? is also very faithfully adherred to in the construction. The sag between ribs is only about 1/8 of an inch ? as compared to 2 inches or more on most other designs. This accounts for the high lift/drag ratio and excellent performance.

The Standard "A" can literally fly circles around most ultralights that have double the power ? and its range is about 250 miles on 5 gallons instead of the usual 100 to 125 miles of most ultralights.

The plane can be assembled in 20 minutes and disassembled in 1/2 of that time.

Ritz Standard A ultralight aircraft specifications
Empty Weight 200 lbs
Gross Weight 475 lbs
Wing Span 36 ft
Wing Chord 4 ft
Wing Area 140 ft.?
Engine 250 Zenoah
Prop 54 x 27
Fuel Capacity 5 gallons
Takeoff Speed 25 mph
Cruise Speed 30 to 50 mph
Top Speed 60 mph
Stall Speed 15 mph
Climb Rate 400 ft./m
Set up Time 20 minutes
Building Time 200 hours, approximately

Ritz Standard A ultralight aircraft, Ritz Standard A experimental aircraft, Ritz Standard A experimental light sport aircraft (ELSA), Light Sport Aircraft Pilot News newsmagazine.
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