Four years in design and development, the Bushmaster is a two- to four-seat aerobatic light aircraft intended for club training, private flying and rural support. It conforms to FAR Pt 23 standards.
The B2-N designation applies to the two-seat prototype (VH-BOI), which first flew on 28 October 1989 powered by a Norton Aerotor rotary engine. Wings of this aircraft were constructed with two metal spars, sheet alloy webs, extruded caps, metal ribs and fabric covering, and were braced by V struts. Fuel was carried in integral tanks within the metal D-nose of each wing leading-edge. The rear fuselage was fabric covered.
Difficulties during test flying, and the absence of expected certification of the Norton engine, obliged Aircorp to abandon its original plan to offer the Bushmaster with a choice of this or Textron Lycoming engines. Airframe changes have also been made to make the aircraft more suitable for series production. Principally, these involve using one-piece extruded spars with the fuel tanks between them, all-metal wing skins, adding three-stage trailing-edge flaps, and bracing each wing by a single I strut.
Production Bushmasters will be marketed in four basic versions, three of them powered by the 86.5 kW (116 hp) Textron Lycoming O-235-N2C flat-four engine and providing two, '2 + 2' and three seats respectively. The three-seat B3-16 accommodates a single pilot on the centreline, with a bench seat behind for two persons. This rear seat can be removed for the carriage of cargo. The fourth version, a full four-seater with a lengthened fuselage, is powered by a 119 or 134 kW (160 or 180 hp) engine (designations B4-60 and B4-80 respectively). The following details apply to the B2 and B3, except where indicated:
TYPE: Two- to four-seat light aircraft.
WINGS: High-wing monoplane, with V strut bracing each side. All-metal constant chord wings, with rounded tips. Three-stage flaps on production version. (Prototype has no flaps).
FUSELAGE: Welded steel tube structure, with light alloy skin. Prototype has fabric covered rear fuselage.
TAIL UNIT: Conventional structure, with wire braced horizontal surfaces.
LANDING GEAR: Non-retractable tailwheel type. Main units have faired-in side Vs, half-axles, and speed fairings on wheels.
POWER PLANT: One 67.1 kW (90 hp) Norton Aerotor 90 two-chamber rotary engine in prototype. Production aircraft to have an 86.5 kW (116 hp) Textron Lycoming O-235-N2C flat-four. Three-blade propeller. Fuel capacity 136,4 litres (36 US gallons; 30 Imp gallons) standard.
ACCOMMODATION: To be offered with choice of two, '2 + 2', three or four seats, in fully enclosed cabin with forward opening door on each side. Space for 55 kg (121 lb) of baggage aft of seats.