Build Projects

One Year Wonder- Zenith

In 2016 IAM launched a community-wide project that featured the construction of a standard Zenith CH 750 Cruzer.  It was targeted towards engaging the young and young at heart of the community, to help spark an interest in engineering, science, math, and aviation.

Build sessions took place on Saturdays twice a month. All were invited: families, groups, and individuals of all ages! 

The goal of this project was to connect, engage, and inspire the young and young at heart of the community with a hands-on experience that would foster interest in aviation and result in a completed, flyable aircraft.

The project was patterned after the EAA’s;”One-Week Wonder” event at the AirVenture in Oshkosh the
previous summer. Click here to learn more.

The Zenith was completed in 2017.

  • zenith
  • Hands on Demo at Illinois Aviation Museum



Fokker E-III

The WWI Aero Builders Club was an Illinois Aviation Museum educational project headed by board members Dan Christine and Chris Christine. This project was a hands-on experience available to any area high school-age students. Under the direction of experienced airplane builders, club members built an actual flying airplane, a WWI ¾ scale Fokker E-III. The club members completed the project in 2008.

Club co-leader Dan Christine flew its successful test flight on October 8, 2008. Watch the video here.

  • Illinois Aviation Museum Fokker Eindecker III
  • Fokker crew hard at work
  • Fokker Crew May 4th

Ground Bound

IAM volunteers created a non-flying (Ground Bound) aircraft. Modeled after a 1916 Curtis Jenny, and made from a riding lawnmower, plywood, and custom-crafted and engineered parts, it is used by the museum to provide rides at airport activities, parades, etc. It is a favorite of the kids at the annual Cavalcade of Planes event. To date, it has given over 15,000 rides to our “future aviators”.

  • GROUND BOUND is our version of a 1917 Curtiss JN-4D “Jenny”