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ACRO E-mail Archive Thread: [IAC-L:874] Re: Stephens Akro Z

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ACRO E-mail Archive Thread: [IAC-L:874] Re: Stephens Akro Z


Thread: [IAC-L:874] Re: Stephens Akro Z

Message: [IAC-L:874] Re: Stephens Akro Z

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From: "Walter Bell" <cricket at>

Date: Sat, 06 Sep 1997 00:45:41 UTC


 Hi Tim,

I owned a Stephens Akro for three years that was at the time of it's loss 
in a highly advanced stage of modification.   The aircraft was N33PE, the
PE standing for Pitts-Eater.
My friend Rick White bought it for airshow use and placed a cold-air
induction Mattatuk engine in it and roll-over, turtledeck, and canopy a-la
an Extra. 

I bought it from him and swapped out the wood wing for a Zivco Edge wing. 
(this aircraft was also the original test bed in which Leo Loudenschlager
first evaluated the Edge wing...but that occured about a year before I
acquired the aircraft from Rick)

The wing swap-out was more than just a wing-change.  The whole aircraft was
overhauled from the steel tubes up.   The fuselage was sand-blasted,
inspected, poor welds or defects re-welded.  The forward four longeron
tubes were sleeved from within and roset-welded. All steel was done in
powder-coat grey paint. I felt that the elevators were too heavy, so we
extended the horizontal stabilizer forward by 11/2 inch at the tip and 23/4
inch at the root and added a large servo tab to the elevator oposite the
elevator with the trim tab. A three-blade MT prop was installed along with
a new nose-bowl and cowling. New baffling was fabricated.  New Nav-com and
xpndr w encoder went in. A haigue-type tailwheel was also installed.  
Finish was ceconite with paint a blue-over-yellow.

The aircraft performed wonderfully, having particularly nice tumbling
characteristics.   Be sure to gap-seal the elevator and rudder...makes a
world of difference!

My friend Drew Stephens was killed in the aircraft while practicing
aerobatics at El Reno Ok.
He was doing a snap-roll and over-rotated by 90 degrees.  There then ensued
2 subsequent departure events that quickly resulted in the aircraft
impacting the ground.
The FAA confirmed the control systems to be intact prior to impact and the
airframe to be intact.  The engine was at full power. that note...the Ackro is the seed of a great lineage leading to
the current Extras.   How far you want to push your bird down that
evolutionary pathway is up to you and your bank-account!  


> From: Tim Shears <TShears at>
> To: Multiple recipients of list <iac-l at>
> Subject: [IAC-L:858] Stephens  Akro Z
> Date: Thursday, September 04, 1997 4:27 PM
> I have recently acquired a Stephens Akro and am planning to do some
> refurbishment work to it over the fortcoming Autumn. Hopefully I will not
> still be doing it in Winter as well. 
> I am interested in making contact with owners of similar aircraft to talk
> about mods etc. I would also be VERY interested if anyone had any
> drawings/plans particularly in computer-readable format as I am doing a
> respray and need to get working on paint schemes. Many thanks.
> Tim Shears
> E-mail 100525.3667 at
> Fax +44 (0)1628777018
> Te +44(0)162838738


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