Tuesday, April 24, 2012


There’s so much to this amazing aircraft that we want to publicly showcase the history, safety, engineering, and customer loyalty from Searey pilots all over the world.  Please continue to send in your personal story to flore@searey.com.  Here’s just a couple.

Bill Starkey

Delaware & Florida

I first saw the Progressive Aerodyne video about 3 years ago and it woke me up to wanting to fly again after about 30 years.  I got my kit last November and have been happily building away since then.  This is to let you know I am very happy to say the factory support is great.  When I can't find parts I get replacements from Renee with no argument.  She just says "when you find them you can bring them back." So far it has happened that way every time.  Kerry is always available and easy to get answers from.  Alan Chandler is very helpful because he is always reachable, even on weekends.  Others have helped me too, but the main thing is the building experience so far has been nothing but great, because of the factory support. 

Captain Walt Bates, UAL retired 

Wisconsin & Florida

I started flying in the early 1950s and, to make a very long story very short, that led to a 38 year United Airlines career that took me from the DC-6 up through the 747-400. But my true love was light planes....and water. I was watching for a two place, side by side amphibian. Finally, in the 1980s, Advanced Aviation produced the Buccaneer II. I bought one of those in 1988 and put nearly 1,400 hours on it before the Searey came about. That was a large improvement over the more ultralight-like Buc II and would be my next aircraft. But I am a firm subscriber to Bob Hoover's admonition, "Don't ever fly the A model of anything." So, it was 2001 before I ordered a kit. Though I had helped with the major assembly of my Buccaneer the Searey would be my first complete kit build from scratch. Keep in mind that I had never covered anything, never spray painted anything, and never even riveted. The Searey kit arrived in September, 2002.

What followed was a highly enjoyable and educational building experience. The experimental amateur-built category allows virtually all manner of, well, experimenting. I freely redid the gear extension mechanism and came up with an inflight adjustable rudder trim system. When I had a question, the staff at Progressive Aerodyne was always eager to help. I made the first flight in my new bird in August of 2005. It was an instant love affair! I have now put over 350 hours on it and flown hundreds of passengers into countless lakes.

Having been "put out to pasture" by United Airlines due to FAA age rules, my life long love affair with flying now continues with my Searey.