The CX4 is currently only approved to build, full approval will not be given until the first UK built CX4 is flown by an LAA approved test pilot, and recommendation implemented. Many of the onerous requirements of the LAA that were requested when first approached have been reduced or removed. A meeting was held with Francis Donaldson of the LAA in April last year, when verbal assurances were given that the CX4 could be approved by fleet hours, rather than full stress analysis. Several changes will still be required to meet LAA approval.
Plans sold in UK
To date there are ten copies of the plan held in the UK. Often plans are brought for interest and idea rather than intention to build, so this number is not indicative of the number of builds registered with the LAA, or where a build has been started.
Several of the plans have changed hands since the licence and plan was purchased from David Thatcher, and the location of some is unknown. It is important that David Thatcher or the CX4 UK Squadron is advised of changes so that updates to the design can be forwarded to the correct plan holder.
LAA Rally 2012
Jon Ward displayed his CX4 in the Home Builders Tent at this years LAA Rally. Jon, Mel Johnson and Ian Melville were kept busy all weekend answering questions about constructing metal aircraft from plans, and about the CX4 in particular. All of the LAA engineering team had a chance to look over Jon's CX4 and there was a lot of constructive dialog.
Peter Beck the supplier of prefabricated parts and assemblies for the CX4 has pulled out of the market. David Thatcher has engaged an engineering company to fill the vacuum and can now supply completed spars in addition to preformed ribs and bulkheads. At the moment there is no formal agreement with LAA Engineering to enable these parts to be used http://www.thatchercx4.com/parts.htm
CX4 Flying Worldwide
There are now thirty eight CX4s flying throughout the world. Of the those that have reported back, a total of over 2600 flying hours and growing.