Ray Stits Flies West

Homebuilt aircraft pioneer designed airplanes and materials.

Ray Stits

Ray Stits

Ray Stits in 1952 with the Sky Baby, sporting a
7’2” wingspan.

Aviation pioneer Ray Stits has died. A passionate aviator, Stits, who was in his 90s, designed several airplanes including the Sky Baby, the smallest airplane built at the time, and was known among homebuilders and rag wing pilots as the man who invented the all-vinyl Poly-Fiber (also referred to as the Stits Process) material for aircraft covering.

Jim O'Brien, the president of EAA Chapter 1 in Riverside, California, announced Stits' passing on Facebook. "I have no details at this time, but know that he had flu symptoms last week, and as such was not at the monthly EAA Chapter 1 board meeting, as he never misses," O'Brien said.

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