Locksmith builds plane to get to work

NO JAMS: Mr Hadrava built Vampira (pictured), an ultralight plane based on a US design of light planes, to cut his commute to work by half.


    Aug 26, 2016

    Locksmith builds plane to get to work


    FRANTISEK Hadrava thought driving to work for 14 minutes was too much so he came up with a plane to cut the travelling by half.

    The 45-year old locksmith from the Czech village of Zdikov took about two years of his spare time to built his Vampira, an ultralight plane based on a United States design of light planes called Mini-Max.

    It has an open cockpit, is propeller-powered by a three-cylinder engine made by Czech firm Verner, and boasts a maximum speed of 146kmh.

    It cost about 3,700 euros (S$5,650) to build, he said.

    He flies his usual path through the forested foothills of the Sumava mountains for his 6am shift at a factory making machine tools.

    He lands on a meadow across the road from the factory. He then needs to push the plane across the road to a parking lot outside the factory.

    "It takes me about 12 to 14 minutes by car," Mr Hadrava said. "By plane, it would take around 4-5 minutes if I flew directly, but I take a bit of a detour so that I don't disturb people early in the morning.

    "So it takes about seven minutes."

    Mr Hadrava has also built a replica of the German World War I triplane Fokker Dr.I.

    His next plan is to construct another historical plane, the French Deperdussin.