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November 22-23, 2017.   Issue No. 4,443.
  This isn't RV-related, but I thought some might be interested.  My wife's car threw a Check Engine light Saturday, and since it's a 10-year old car I'm thinking O2 sensor.  A friend at the airport suggested looking into the Bluetooth OBD-II scan devices that plug into the OBD-II port, so I did.  A few reviews later I ordered a $99 BlueDriver from here and downloaded the free app.  Hardware arrived Monday night...problem fixed Tuesday morning (it wasn't the O2 sensor).  Reset the codes via the app.  It has already paid for itself, and it goes w/o saying that my friends at the airport are going to want to borrow this when their cars throw error codes ;^).
  If you like looking at graphed engine data from your RV, you might like this for your cars (if they were built after 1996 - when the OBD-II standard was made mandatory for all US-build vehicles).
  Nerds of the world unite!

PS:  There won't be a Thursday Thanksgiving edition, but I'll most likely work up something for Friday.  Gobble gobble...

RV-12 Documentary? ...Paul Straub video (1hr 5min)

Don't know what else to call it....I never did a 'blog' but now that my build is over, I wanted to document the story somehow. When I was considering building an RV-12 a couple years ago, I watched Dave Gamble's "Building a Van's RV-12" on YouTube and that is what pushed me over the edge (in a good way) to build the plane. I'm hoping this might help someone that is just thinking about building or on the fence. If you ever can't sleep and are willing to give up an hour of your life that you can never get back, it may or may not be interesting, but this is the story of my build.


Sunset over MN ...Alex Peterson

This was simply too amazing not to share, taken tonight over Vadnais Heights, a NE suburb of the Twin Cities. The view is towards the SW, with Vadnais Lake just touching the wing, and Lakes Wabasso and Owasso a bit further in the distance. This view lasted only a minute or two. This was one of the best I've viewed in the 16 years this plane has been flying!


Water leak from underside

My 6A is pretty tight up top, even with a tip-up. I posted previously about a 3 piece fiberglass tray which prevents any leakage from the front canopy seal from making its way into the instruments, although the canopy seal rarely lets any water in. Flying some practice IMC approaches the other day in heavy clouds with 700' ceilings resulted in water dripping out of the drain holes in the bottom of the fuselage, specifically the forward most drain hole which is centerline, just aft of the seat back bulkhead. I'd say that approximately a pint of water leaked out after I parked the plane in the hanger, following about 1.5 hours in the clouds (no rain just lots of moist humid clouds).

I found this extremely disturbing and set right away to identifying the source of the leak, while everything was still wet and I could hope to track it. Off came the seat backs, floor panels and the baggage bulkhead panels. I figured it must be coming from the wing area, even though I had sealed the outer floor ribs to the skins at construction which had been recommended. I found that virtually the only evidence of water was along the center of the aircraft, between the two ribs which create the tunnel for the elevator pushrod. The drain hole is in the baggage compartment portion, but there was also water in the portion of the tunnel forward of the compartment in the seat area and even the aft part of the insulation in the center tunnel of the floor area was very wet. No evidence of it coming from outboard and working its way to the center. Aft of the baggage bulkhead was virtually dry, with only a few drops of water visible.  ...


Windscreen Fairing Status Shots ...J_Turner

Rolled the plane outside in prep for some sanding...


EGT and CHT at WOT

Not sure if this is a problem but its not something I have experienced yet. At WOT on takeoff, my #2 cylinder egt rapidly climbs to 1560 deg and the CHT also goes up more than the other cylinders. After leveling off and setting cruise power, the temps come down but #2 is always warmer than the other cylinders. I removed the air dams in front of #1 and #2, checked for induction leak, borescoped #2 cylinder but do not see anything out of the ordinary. Fuel flow seems adequate and engine is very smooth running. Any ideas? The engine is an O320 150HP and has about 15 hours SMOH on an RV6A

Takeoff and climbout WOT.  ...


Self-discharge or parasite drain?

I've had an EarthX ETX680 in my project for many months now. Usually it is on the Optimate charger they recommended. A few months back I unplugged the charger to move some things around. I went to start avionics today and the battery was dead, showing 7v. I charged and it came back to 13.65v but I'm trying to figure out what could be causing this.

This happened over maybe 3-4 months unplugged. The battery is in the plane and everything is wired up but the master is off. There should be nothing draining the battery, and if I put an ammeter in-line with ground I see 0.000A going through it.

What am I missing? Their install doc claims a discharge at ~3%/month so it should not have been a self-discharge problem.

Here is my wiring diagram:


Overtaking by 80 knots please slow down (RV-7A)

The other day I was #2 landing on rwy 21 at Tucson. The main runway is under upgrades and the airliners are landing on rwy 21. Approach asked me to keep my speed up as I approached the airport. When I switched to tower they told me I was #2 behind a Comanche on final. Then they told me to slow down because I was over taking the Comanche by 80 knots.

Honest officer, I wasn't going that fast......


Mothership Thanksgiving Sched


To all RV-3, RV-4 and RV-6 builders: (Mothership)

"Van’s Aircraft has always prided itself on customer support. One aspect of this support is our commitment to continue the ready supply of parts for older models that have been superseded in design and ease of assembly. The RV-3, RV-4 and RV-6 were the basis of our product line for quite some time. In recent years we have seen their respective kit sales decline significantly. Although kits and spare parts for these models remain in our inventory, the cost to produce and warehouse parts that rarely sell is ever more burdensome. Therefore, to mitigate the costs and logistical difficulties that arise from low sales, we must adjust our production, pricing and delivery schedules.

This is to inform builders of these models that prices for these kits will significantly increase after January 1, 2018. Production runs for these kits will not cease, but the period between them will increase dramatically. We estimate production gaps of one year or more that can easily translate to delivery dates of one to two years from date of order.

We at Van’s want you to continue your project to completion and therefore suggest that you place an order for an empennage, wing, fuselage or finish kit now at current prices. If we receive enough orders for these kits beyond current inventory by years end, we will institute a production run to cover them all. This will yield reasonable delivery times. Spare parts will also remain available as supplies last. However, once depleted, parts may still remain available, but will be produced on a one-off basis. Production of any one part is expensive so an elevated price compared to a similar part in another model RV is to be expected.

Kits available for order are:
RV-3 Empennage, Wing, Fuselage and Finish
RV-4 Empennage, Wing, Fuselage and Finish
RV-6(A) Fuselage and Finish

Current prices will remain in effect for all kits ordered prior to December 31, 2017. Subsequent orders will be subject to the increased prices.

Van’s Aircraft"

(From Mitch Lock)
"This new policy is not to be misconstrued as a faltering in our commitment or willingness to support our customers whether an order was placed yesterday or forty-six years ago. We will produce a singular part if need be to make certain the reason an RV doesn’t fly is not due to us. But the economic reality to perpetuate this level of dedication compels us to make hard choices. Any model we produce must generate enough revenue to at least keep it from being subsidized. This was our only path to keep these models viable, old ones flying and hopefully new ones to finally take to the air."
Mitchell Lock
President Van's Aircraft


Update from the Mothership ...RE: Hobbs Meter (20 to go)


 How to Minimize the Chance You Could be Dealing with a Scammer

...when using the classifieds.

Model-specific subforums

photo courtesy Van's Aircraft, Inc.






photo courtesy Fred Bauer, Jr.

VAF Calendar ...upcoming Events for the Next 60 Day(s)

11-24-2017: KJKA - LULU's Fly-out

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