The ZODIAC aircraft is built of stressed-skin semi-monocoque all-metal construction, just like todays factory-built planes, but adapted specifically for the kit builder. Sheet-metal construction is outstandingly the most widely used aircraft building method around the world, and has proven itself as the ideal aircraft material since the early pioneering days of aviation.
The ZODIAC airframe kit is complete
Unlike most other all-metal kit aircraft, the ZODIAC kit is made for the first-time builder, and is easy and quick to build, requiring no special skills, tools or jigs to assemble in a small workshop, such as a single car garage. Zenair has been perfecting all-metal construction for homebuilders since 1974. giving it unparalleled experience in providing complete kits for first-time builders, and renowned customer support to every builder.
"You have a great kit. I'm buying more than just a box full of parts. I'm particularly pleased with this project because, from talking to other builders, I'll be flying while they're still building. I'm not a mechanic, I'm a pilot. I couldn't imagine better support from the factory - it is a pleasure working with you."
- Kit builder S.B.
Sturdy and low-fatigue aluminum alloys make the
ZODIAC airframe very rugged and corrosion resistant. The modern 6061-T6 aluminum-silicon alloy used in the ZODIAC construction is durable and corrosion resistant, ideal for even the harshest environment, and very easy to repair and maintain. The owner of a ZODIAC is assured of a long airframe life, with minimum required maintenance, as metal is not adversely affected by ultra-violet (UV) light and temperature changes like fabrics, Dacron or composites (its thus feasible to tie-down the aircraft outdoors, minimizing costs).
- Related Topic: All-Metal Aircraft Construction
Made for the first-time kit builder, the ZODIAC may be built from plans-only. or from partial or complete kits. Building a ZODIAC from scratch (rather than a kit) necessitates more time, skills, and tools, requiring about 1,500 hours to build.
Click here for a detailed schematic of the tail control system
All the ZODIAC CH 601 models draw on Zenith Aircrafts vast design and manufacturing experience. The simple stressed-skin semi-monocoque construction uses single curvature sheet-metal skins riveted to internal structural members.
"They go together predominantly with aircraft-grade pull-stem rivets, which together with the simplicity of the design make for kits that can actually be assembled in a few hundred hours."
Kitplanes magazine (01/04)