About Slick Aerobatic Aircraft
The Slick Aircraft Company was set-up in 2005 to promote and market the Slick 360 aircraft as well as to continue with research and development on existing and new projects.
Historically the Slick 360 evolved out of need for a highly competitive composite Advanced Aerobatic aircraft utilising a cost effective 4-cylinder Lycoming IO-360 engine. The initial driving force behind the project was the late Glen Dell, who was competing for many years at the highest national and international levels and was crowned Advanced World Aerobatic Champion in 2004.
In 2003, the competition aircraft Glen owned was built from traditional aluminium and the plane was considered heavy when compared to the newer composite designs emerging from Europe and the USA.
In view of upgrading to a competitive composite aircraft and after extensive research, Glen decided to explore the option of producing a locally designed and manufactured aerobatic aircraft. Glen approached a small and relatively unknown aviation company specializing in composite aircraft manufacturing, Aerocam. Based in Centurion, Pretoria, Aerocam had a good reputation within the aviation industry for innovative, high technological design and manufacturing capabilities. Aerocam's credentials include the design and development of composite aircraft components for various sectors within aviation. These include military RPV design and manufacture, commercial production of King Air 200 series cargo pods and chemical spray systems for specialised oil spill treatment aircraft. Civlian projects undertaken consist of assembly of various composite kit aircraft including Thunder Mustang and Sea Wind and the production of the Celstar GA-1 competition aerobatic glider in which won a gold and silver at the 1989 World Championships.
Aerocam went about producing an aircraft that would be competitive at International level. In just one year the prototype aircraft took to the air and was branded the Slick 360. This craft was used to secure the 2004 National title for Glen.
In 2006 Global Composite Solutions took over Aerocam and the full composite production models from 002 to current have come from their manufacturing facility. A ongoing development programme has been in place to refine the already excellent handling characteristics of the Slick and to focus on reducing the planes mass and maximizing the power to weight ratio. The evolution of changes include :
- Fully streamlined composite fuselage, tail and stabiliser with no flying wires
- Cold air induction sump on the AEIO 360 Lycoming engine to improve scavenging during aerobatic maneuvers
- Extensive aileron spade development to achieve crisp snap movement without "bobble"
- Horn balanced ailerons to reduce weight
- Aerodynamic refinements such as undercarriage socks, profiled leg fairings, laminar flow spats and one piece profiled tail section
- Lightweight parallel valve AEIO 360 Lycoming engine with Cold air induction sump to improve scavenging during aerobatic maneuvers
- Fully intergrated glass cockpit avionics
To date nine Slick 360 aircraft have been sold locally.