What's a Falco?

Data taken from Sequoia Aircraft Corp.

The Falco is made of wood. The ribs, spars and fuselage frames are made of fine-grained Sitka spruce and then faced with aircraft-grade birch plywood. The entire airplane is skinned with birch plywood. The interior surfaces are coated with epoxy, and the outside is covered with a very thin layer of fiberglass and epoxy for moisture protection.

The Falco as described by Alfred Scott of Sequoia Aircraft....

"From the day it first flew in 1955, the Falco has been called "the Ferrari of the air". This Italian design is sleek, strong, agile and fast. There are two seats. Control sticks. A bubble canopy for all-around visibility. It's an outstanding cross-country plane, with thousand-mile range and full IFR capability. And fast. A few examples have even topped 230 mph--on the standard 160 hp engine.

A superb aerobatic ship, the Falco is a graceful ballerina in the sky. Cuban eights, loops, rolls, snaps and spins are only a flick of the control stick away. The agility is astonishing, and the handling is legendary. The controls are light and precise, and after pulling through a smooth series of rolls and loops, the comparison with jet aircraft becomes inevitable.

The Falco is also strong. Aerobatic certification means the Falco can easily take loads which would break an ordinary airplane. And even for pilots who always keep the wings level, it's nice to have that strength.

The Falco's proven record and engineering puts it in a class by itself. It was designed by Stelio Frati, one of the great aircraft designers of all time. It was certified and built as a production aircraft and has a history of over 40 years of use by pilots in Europe. Now, with many refinements, the Sequoia Falco is a modern, state-of-the-art aircraft built and flown by pilots all over the world.

Compared to ordinary aircraft, the Falco is an Arabian stallion among plowhorses. It is a classic, timeless design that has everything you could ask of an aircraft: looks, speed, efficiency, aerobatics, strength, and--above all--an absolute joy to fly.

The Falco. A plane for all seasons--and all time."


The F.8L Falco is a two-seat aircraft with comfortable side-by-side seating for two large adults and a luggage compartment behind the pilot and passenger's seats. 

A true dual-purpose aircraft, the Falco offers an unbeatable combination of high-speed cross-country travel with aerobatic capability.

Powered with a fuel-injected 160 hp Lycoming the Falco will cruise at 190 mph. The fuel-injected 180 hp Lycoming may also be used, providing a cruise of 198 mph and a dramatically higher rate of climb.

Forty-gallon tanks provide an ultimate range of about 1,000 miles. All that speed means fuel efficiency-specifically about 25 miles per gallon.

Normal landings and takeoffs require only 1,150 feet to clear a 50-foot barrier. The flaps are very effective and allow for steep approaches. The retractable landing gear is very rugged and is suitable for rough-field operation. The maximum permissible speed in a dive is 240 mph.

The gross weight of 1,880 pounds provides a useful load of 668 pounds, ample for two people, full fuel and luggage. The aerobatic weight provides for the ability to carry two people, one hour of fuel and parachutes.

The Falco is much stronger than a normal airplane, and this added strength means it is capable of taking loads far in excess of those that a normal aircraft could stand. Operational limits are +6 g's and ­3 g's at aerobatic weight. 

With a power-to-weight ratio that is lower than most singles, the Falco accelerates quickly on takeoff. At 1,150 feet per minute, the rate of climb is brisk. 

Engine 160 hp Lycoming
180 hp Lycoming
TBO 2,000 hrs 2,000 hrs
Propeller Hartzell 2-blade,
Hartzell 2-blade,
Seats 2 2
Gross weight,
  Normal and Utility
1,880 lbs 1,880 lbs
Max aerobatic weight 1,650 lbs 1,650 lbs
Empty weight,equipped 1,212 lbs 1,212 lbs
Useful load,
  Normal & Utility
668 lbs 660 lbs
Useful load,
438 lbs 430 lbs
Payload with full fuel 428 lbs 420 lbs
Wing loading 17.5 lbs/sq ft 17.5 lbs/sq ft
Power loading,
  Normal & Utility
11.7 lbs/hp 10.4 lbs/hp
Power loading,
10.3 lbs/hp 9.2 lbs/hp
Fuel capacity (all usable) 40 U.S. gals 40 U.S. gals
  with inverted tank 43 U.S. gals 43 U.S. gals
Baggage 90 lbs 90 lbs
Rate of climb 1,140 fpm 1,500 fpm**
Best rate-of-climb speed 104 mph 104 mph
Climb gradient 662 ft/sm 872 ft/sm
Service ceiling 19,000 ft 19,000 ft
Maximum speed 212 mph 220 mph**
Never-exceed speed 240 mph 240 mph
Cruise 75% power at 6000 ft 190 mph* 198 mph**
Fuel flow at 75% power 8.5 gph 9.6 gph
Endurance at 75% power 4.4 hrs 3.9 hrs
Range, economy cruise 1,000 sm 920 sm
Stall speed, clean 75 mph 75 mph
Stall speed, flaps/gear down 62 mph 62 mph
Turbulent-air penetration speed 140 mph 140 mph
Take-off run 570 ft 530 ft
  to clear 50 ft 1,150 ft 1,020 ft
Landing run 750 ft 750 ft
  to clear 50 ft 1,150 ft 1,150 ft