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Mon, Apr 30, 2012.  1133z  
  Good morning!  Saturday I got a text at 0814...."Formation? 0900?"  Wifey and daughter were out hawking their handmade jewelry at a local craft fair and Tate spent the night with a friend and wouldn't be home until noon.  We live 30 minutes from the airport - that's the big variable.  "Yep."  Grab the flight bag, Taquito and Dr. Pepper at the Whataburger drive through, put ten gallons in the RV and flop in the briefing chair at Stan's hangar at 0903.  Close.
  The mission was a photography class project of one of the pilot's sons - needed to get photos of something....and we counted as something.  Very bumpy 2-ship, so we're hoping at least some of the shots turn out.  Great use of a morning, regardless.
 
All of Sunday was yard work and dealing with the allergies that go along with it <g>.  Hope you had a nice weekend.
 
  
 (contact)  Thoughts on safety

Another RV Takes To The Sky!!! ...Chris Sands post.

This past Friday Greg Cameron's 11 year RV-7A project saw some wind under its wings for the first time!!! Aside from the normal heat issues, the flight was flawless. Its powered by an ECi-IO-360, and Whirlwind RV-200 Prop. Behind the Panel is a VP-X, AFS 5600, GTN-650 and GPS-696. Waiting on the ever delayed TruTrak Gemini series to replace the DGII. Congratulations Greg!  more photos


Kurt Gearhart photo

Conquering the Demon ...Chris Hepburn -8

A weird subject line I know.... but it's not about going above Mach 1 in my RV-8, it's about my trials and tribulations as a low time pilot doing his phase I. (This a long post, I might ramble a bit)

First, I took transition training with Mike Seager last June... I tried to time it close to my completion of the RV-8, but, as many of you more experienced builders know, that's pretty much impossible. First flight: Oct 30 under the able control of Kevin Horton.

Decision 1: Although transition trained, I felt I had insufficient skill to handle an emergency situation on the first flight. I based that decision on if I thought I would be 'learning how to fly' vs 'flying the airplane', it would be wise to get someone else to do the honors. (Also, the CARS in Canada require the PC of the aircraft have 100 hours on type to do the first 5 hours. -- my time on Oct 30th as P1 power: 83.)

OK, everything went well for Kevin, we had a few glitches that I've already posted about earlier.

Now, my turn... Nov 15 2011. I was taught by Mike to 3-point on landing. I was told that with 50 lbs in the baggage compartment, the 8 will fly much like the 7. So, 50 lbs it is. I took off, went out local and did a few stalls, slow flight, and turning slow flight flaps up and down. Back to the airport... with all the talk on here about how hard it was to 3point an 8, I was thinking about Mikes advice on final. 75 knots over the fence.....holding offffffffffff, boink (small one) stick in the gut rolling out. Easy Peasy. (and pretty much a 3point like Mike said it would be) BIG SMILE.

Decision 2: Listen to your transition instructor. Do what he said. It worked.

Flight 2 was a non event again... but now flight 3.  continue

● 'Make a Wish' Update ...Bryan Raley

I think that Mike may update this thread with additional info, so I won't steal too much thunder here, but since I was online I figured I would update everyone. After the original post and overwhelming response from the VAF community, some wheels were quickly put into motion to get Alex Cuellar up in an RV.

Well, that all came together yesterday when he showed up at KFTG during the monthly YE rally for Chapter 301. He was assigned a flight in an RV-6A owned by Gary Zilik, N99PZ, and the reports I received were that he had an awesome one hour flight.

Since I am a firm believer in the philosophy that flying is good for the soul, I am hoping that this will serve as the launching platform for continued efforts to get this young man up to Airventure this year.

In The Shop
RV-3B Dave's in Colorado ...Dave starts his 'My RV Build Project' thread.

The shop is ready. I'll be building this RV-3B in my garage, a smallish two-car garage attached to my older tract home in a cheap part of town. The kit's boxes haven't arrived yet, so at this stage all I'm doing is reporting that the shop is ready.

The empennage jig is from Rod Woodard, in Loveland, CO. It was originally made by Walt Ellwood, I think, and disassembled, fits in my pickup truck. It's quite stiff and is one worry crossed off the list - thanks, Rod!.

I made three new work tables for this project. The design is considerably easier to built than the EAA table, and so far I've made seven of these. They're good. For these three, I used up some surplus plywood to make the drawers, since I don't have floor space for a roll-away tool cabinet.  continue

Video
Brad 'ChiefPilot' Benson First Engine Start ...Bob Collins video

 

Safety
http://www.ntsb.gov/news/2012/120427.html

Event News
RV-1 at the Virginia Festival of Flight ...Don Alexander

I'm just posting a few photos right now and may add more later. The weather was cool with low ceilings and afternoon rain, which resulted in low attendance. A lot of folks however visited RV-1. Some knew all about it and others had little knowledge of aviation, so the Fly-In and RV-1 both attracted a good cross section of people.

This was a scene you'd see frequently until the rain came - everyone wanted their picture with the RV.  more

Totally Off Topic


Fri Apr 27, 2012.  1129z  
 
Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!
    
 (contact)  Thoughts on safety

The "TBD" paint scheme ...Glen Salmon RV-8

Yesterday was a long day with lots of help as my RV-8 came out of paint and was re-assembled.

After an extensive inspection and pre-flight, the airplane returned to the skies for a series of tests, landing and follow up inspection. It passed with flying colors - seven to be exact!

The design is the Douglas TBD Devastator aboard the USS Wasp in 1941.  more

New 'My RV Build Project' Entry ...Scott Balmos 9A

So here begins the build log of my RV-9a slider, N112SB, tentatively named "My Significant Other". Why yes, I'm single, why do you ask? I'm just shy of 30, and by day, I am a senior software developer. By night, I'm building this beast in the converted second bedroom and garage of my condo. Before you all drop your jaws, yes it's a tight squeeze sometimes. But I have the parents' basement available to store subsections as I finish them. Plus my dad is a woodworking shop teacher with a full shop, so I've got free reign of all his bench power tools (especially the bandsaw and drill press!). The build time will be long, but steady - usually a half hour nightly during the work-week, assuming nothing else is going on that night, and then a majority of the weekends. Amazingly, the neighbors do not hear the air compressor or rivet gun!  more

related: HOW TO USE THE 'MY RV BUILD PROJECT' SECTION

In The Shop
RV-12 Plans Revision Posted on the Factory Site ....34 pages


Fiberglass Damage Repair ...from guys smarter than me.



Totally Off Topic


Thu, Apr 26, 2012.  1137z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety

After a long time ...Luke in Italy (you're going to like this picture)

VAF Family
Yet another build delay ...Joe Wilber RV-10

"Since I started this build 18 months ago I've faced several irritating delays. Some have been financial - waiting to buy the wing kit for example. Others have been messing up and needed to reorder parts or buying some new tool and waiting for it to arrive. Or travel for work. Or ... The one thing they all have in common is that they were enormously frustrating. Well, I've got yet another delay to my build, an indirect financial delay, which I have to say just doesn't bother me at all this time.

She is 22 weeks old in this ultrasound image taken yesterday and she's very active and doing just fine. And yes, she is smiling at me, in case you weren't sure. Her oldest brother is 15 and learning to drive. Then 9 year old twin boys and then Amelia's big sister who is almost 8. Big spread in age with our kids and we couldn't be happier!

I was just starting my tanks when we found out she was on the way and I knew immediately the airplane was going to take a bit longer as a result. Knowing this, my progress has slowed but not stopped. No hurry to finish the wings when I can't get the Fuse just yet, right? I'm doing the tank ribs at the moment - fun with proseal. We're trying to be financially creative in order to keep the build going, but the reality is it will take a little more time than planned. .... And who cares! For once, the build delay just doesn't seem to matter.

This news isn't exactly about airplanes or building directly, but my excitement I just can't contain and I thought I could share the news with VAF. We're on the older side now to be having a baby and my wife has had some issues in the past at this stage, so we're just taking it easy and asking the Lord for a low-stress and uneventful pregnancy the rest of the way. Lord willing, that's what we'll have and in another four months I'll post another picture.

Congratulations to us!"

Troubleshooting
Control cables outer cover melted (RV-10)

I was changing the oil today and noticed the cluster of control cables for the throttle, mixture, prop had there green plastic outer cover melted off in places just a few inches foreward of the firewall. After a closer look for the source of heat, it appears that the outlet from the heat muffs were the culprit. I am in Florida and rarely use heat, so the heat is continuously bypassing at the firewall diverter valve and blowing on the cables.

Could I just block off the inlet air to the muffs in the summer or would the muffs get too hot without flow through them. I'm thinking it will be fine but thought I would ask for opinions first.

  Some Replies:

let air flow thru the muffs, or remove the muffs and install a heat shield

I wrapped in it silicone tape and it seems fine after 200 hours

Cablecraft does sell a version with a black sleeve that is rated about 80 degrees higher than the green sleeve

I routed a hose/tube to the cooling air outlet when I configured the heater/defroster system

I always install firesleeve on exposed areas of cable FWF to help prevent heat damage

I placed a protective sleeve on them , the problem was eliminated

I had custom length cables made from McFarlane. They're expensive, but worth the money because I don't want to have to replace them in a few years

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Master Cylinder O-rings

I have Cleveland master cylinders 10-30 and the o-rings are now leaking because of the 83282 brake fluid and the old nitrile seals. I failed to replace them when I upgraded the caliper o-rings.  I need to replace them with Viton rings but need the correct sizes to order.  Does anyone know off-hand the correct sizes or part numbers?

  Some Replies:

Just curious how old and how many hours you have on your rig with those o-rings and Mil 83282 hydraulic fluid. That stuff is supposed to be completely compatable with systems designed for Mil 5606, as in standard buna-n o-rings.  Nothing wrong with Viton rings, I think that buys you higher temp limits.  I have 365 hours and 4.5 years on my RV-8 with Mil 83282 hydraulic fluid from Royco with stock Cleveland wheel brake calipers and Matco brake cylinders. Haven't seen a drop of red come out of either due to deterierated o-rings or seals. Brakes are good and tight and haven't rebleed them since new. Maybe next annual though. Wonder what gives with your setup. I'm curious to hear the conclusions and outcome since quite a few of us have chosen to use Mil 83282 fluid. Thanks, pal. Let us know

I have 2-110 & 2-113 listed as the sizes of the older Cleveland style master cylinder O-rings. FYI, no need to upgrade to Viton on the master cylinders or parking brake valve, as these parts do not see slightly higher than ambient air temps [unlike the calipers] Simply replace them with Nitrile O-rings, which can be found almost anywhere. FYI, do NOT use Harbor Freight or any other "Made in China" O-rings. Made in China [I'd avoid anything made in a third world country. Best to buy Made in USA] O-rings are of sub standard quality.  Simply remove your old O-rings and take them to match them up to the replacements.  Charlie
PS The new fluid had nothing to do with the O-ring failure. They simply wore out. The newer fluid is fully compatible with the original Nitrile O-rings. You should be able to source Nitrile O-rings locally from an auto parts store or your local industrial bearing supply house. These days, you never know the quality of small parts like O-rings found at an auto parts store. My experience has been that the bearing supply houses carry good quality stuff

Thrift
Grassroots Flying and Stretching Limited Dollars.

The paperwork is in the FAA's hands and the check has cleared, so I guess I can talk about it now.

As you may already know, I sold my unopened RV-3 QB wing and fuselage kits last month - keeping the partially completed tail kit for the future.  No matter how I bent the pencils, crunching the numbers didn't support having a second full strength RV in the family at the current time.  Our daughter is on short final for college....and our son is on left downwind with college in sight.  It's a weak economy to boot, so it's difficult to forecast where the advertisers and donations will wind up at the end of the year.  As a 1-person company betting everything on VAF, I think about things like this on an hourly basis.  Just couldn't rationalize during the 'financial Max Q' part of our lives spending the additional $25,000 or so that would be needed to finish the RV-3 project (engine, finishing kit, paint, etc).  I also sold my pink coral Vespa (for what I paid for it five years ago thanks to higher gas prices) and a few other things.  As it turned out, selling this stuff let me scratch my 'low/slow, open door' itch immediately, and got several of my RV buddies jazzed up in the process.

You might remember the article I wrote describing what I was hoping would, someday down the line, be offered by the fine folks at the mothership - a sort of inexpensive as possible 1-man RV Cub?  There seemed to be some thinking like me, since I now have a list of names with nearly 90 people on it saying they would start building now if Van's offered it.  A fun mental exercise and good discussion.  You never know....maybe someday.  But let's talk about right now.

Steve, a friend of ours out at 52F who had an RV-4 and is now building an RV-8, recently offered to sell me his 1946 J3C-65, and selling the RV-3 wing and fuse kits (and Vespa and other stuff) gave me enough jack to swing it outright.  He also has a PA-11, so he's still got a flying Cub.  Honestly, it felt good to replace several things with one thing - life less complicated and all that.  It's a good, solid, dirt simple Cub that didn't break the bank (about what we paid for our well-used Honda Accord).  Not the prettiest, but well maintained.  It lived in NJ for 12 years, TX for 20, CA and PA for 3 each, and in FL for about six months.  I'm the 23rd owner in 66 years.  A lot of those owners were parents passing it down to their children, or friends selling it back and forth to each other.  It received its airworthiness certificate on Oct 9, 1946 and has been recovered several times.

Danny (RV-8), Ross (RV-6), Randy (RV-6), Jay (RV-8), Chris (RV-8), Tommy (RV-8), Greg (RV-6), Stan and I (RV-6) all now have something low/slow and less expensive to fly when the mood strikes.  They'll pay for the gas they use and help with the insurance and hangar.  Most of them owned at least part of a Cub or T-craft in the past.  Me, I'm hoping to occasionally throw in a lawn chair, putt over to a grass strip, and read a book under the wing for a couple hours with the phone off.  Will our RV-6 get flown less?  Yep.  Avgas was $1.85/gal in 2002 when it first flew.  This week it's $5.10/gal on my field.  The last time I filled up the RV-6 tanks completely it wasn't too far from $200.  Flying the J-3 around for a half hour a couple days back burned $12.24 in gas.  Add to this the fact that it was 91ºF yesterday here in Dallas, TX (106ºF in Childress).  The door won't go back up for the next six months.

Don't get me wrong, we LOVE our RVs and are 'Van Fans' through and through (we all have one), but sometimes some of us just want to go up and look at cows and creeks for a few minutes with the wind swirling around.  Without it hitting the wallet too hard.

My kids can learn to fly in this, and a few of the RV guys flying it are CFIs.  Knowing how to hand prop and fly a Cub might look good on a college application letter.

Having said all this, the day, actually the minute, Van's offers something semi-like it (door removable, less expensive and less thirsty), I'll have (1) 1946 J3C-65 up for sale.  I'm a Van's guy first and foremost...

I don't see myself mentioning the Cub much here on VAF after this blurb, but if I get the occasional good picture out the window I'll be sure to share (like the two below).  No plexi to shoot through and the point 'n shoot is right there in the front pocket.

I'm becoming a better pilot.  Just two days ago I learned that doing a hard slip to land on the grass with the windows and door open will make your baseball cap disappear.  Good to know.  Update:  Randy said he might have seen my cap in the spot I mentioned to him....but it might be a cow pie.  Developing...

I now understand why Mr. V likes having a motorglider in addition to his RVs.  It's pretty fun to fly something that expands your flying skill set.  Doing it for next to nothing in today's fiscal climate is icing on the cake. 

related: Some pretty good Cub movies on YouTube

Totally Off Topic


Wed, Apr 25, 2012.  1109z
  Worked in a little pre-lunch flight over to Propwash and back before the winds picked up, with a pass down a nice grass strip sorta on the way (forecast to be pretty windy here for the next few days).  Grand total of 16n.m. roundtrip looking at ForeFlight later (screen capture right).  Gotta fly when you can, even if only for a little bit - just moving the oil around for a few minutes.
  Lunch with Paul and Louise, who were in town for an hour to visit their -3 being painted on our field.  Went to Vinny's Italian for some carbs and cannoli.  Good stuff, and a nice guy that Vinny.
  Hope you have a nice hump day.   (contact)  Thoughts on safety

Landing at Llano after a long day...Brian Carroll story continues

An "alternate" Alternate Air Door...Dan Langhout -7.

Four part post with multiple pictures...

In The Shop
Fiberglass Side and Rear Sliding Canopy Skirts ...some ideas.


Video
Flying with Shari ....Steve Reeves video

"A nice peaceful flight in a RV-6 with a beautiful girl, what could be better?  Note the hat on my head..."

 

First Flight Video ...John Bridges

Finally cut the footage into something approaching reasonable. I particularly like the first landing. Gives the game away that it wasn't me.

 

Safety
● Latest....

Totally Off Topic


Tue, Apr 24, 2012.  1146z  

Sandy Ryan....first RV ride

Wanted to give a special shout out thank you to my wife's older sister Sandy, who came down from Philly to be a part of our daughter Audrey's Confirmation at Mass this past Sunday (Sandy was Audrey's sponsor - they talked weekly over Skype).  Yesterday the winds were calm, so she got her first ride in a single engine airplane....something built in a garage <g>.
      (contact)  Thoughts on safety

MT 2 TX and back ...Brian Carroll

Earlier this spring I started making plans for a Texas trip to visit friends and participate in a few Sport Air Races. Life (money) delayed that plan. Finally, Work, Weather and Wallet reached harmony and I chose to go for the Hill Country 150. On Monday 4/15, I was flight planning when our Daughter Jenny stopped by after another grueling day as an “End of Tax season” CPA. She said “I need a break” I offered the right seat to Texas on Thursday. “I can’t, my kids haven’t really seen me lately (80hr workweeks). During her drive to Bozeman, she called “Is that seat still open?” Yep…woohoo, I have a navigator.  more

A bungalow in Maine ...Vlad

My fridge is always empty and it's breakfast time. I am tired of morning every-weekend-the-same buttered rolls. Text goes to my other relative - can you fry couple eggs I am hungry. Sure he sez come up I'll cook you something.

The up location was about two and half hours in RV from the Big Apple. Precisely at Rangeley Lake of Maine. Not to mention driving to my airport which may take the same time in opposite direction. But I am used to it. Since my RV started flying I developed steady diet. I am having meals three times regularly - on Tues, Fri and Sundays. It was a Sunday, my cousin fled to Kali for vacation, he owes me couple lunches. It's good to have big family the other brother won't let you starve.  more

Pictures of 'Fatso' ...first flight the other day

In The Shop
New Canopy Measured, Trimmed and Finally Cut ...bkthomps.  Several photos...

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Panel rebuild ...Chris Smith RV-4

Before

After

Totally Off Topic

 

Mon, Apr 23, 2012.  1058z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety

RV-6A First Flight ...John Brudges 6a (Melbourne, Ausralia

G'day all,

Certificate of Airworthiness issued 10:30 21Apr12 and reporting first flight of VH-VNS RV6A kit 20938 10:31am 22Apr12 Australian EST from Mangalore (YMNG) airport in Central Victoria. Flight duration was 20 minutes. None of the wings were heavier than any of the others although right rudder was required to keep the ball centered. Only problem was with the pitch trim control which is via the VP-X computer; configuration dropped out leaving the pitch trim uncontrolled (but in trail). Probably need to get to the root cause of that one.

Engine is an IO-320 fully rebuilt with dual Lightspeed Plasma II+ ignition. With test prop on, engine exceeds 2700rpm so producing a little more than the standard 160hp. Prop is a Sensenich FP. Fatso is probably one of the heavier RV6A's at 480kg (1058lbs) Basic empty weight

Some photos will be forthcoming.

Grin now installed on face, see some of you at Oshkosh this year.

Buddy the Austrailian Shepard Rescue

My wife finally got me to sign up for Pilot N paws. On April 6th we flew our first passenger. His name was Buddy a 6 year old Assie shepard who was turned into a kill shelter from his owners. He was 90% blind at birth and the owners did not know this. He was a very sick dog when turned in but was nursed back to health and a new home was found. We picked him up in Ravenswood WV from another pilot (Paul) who fly's many rescues. When we got there Buddy was sitting on Paul's lap on a picnic table just enjoying the great weather. We loaded him up and off we went to KCFJ Crawfordsville Indiana. Buddy did great and finally fell asleep. We had about 1hr 20 min flight and when we arrived his new family was waiting. We unloaded Buddy and he seemed right at home with his new family.

This was a very rewarding trip for us to be able to help this wonderful dog.  We got an update last week that Buddy is doing great.  Oh KCFJ airport has a new FBO which is really nice.  continue

In The Shop
Stupid mistake ...his words and title. 
                          [ed. Yeah, I never did anything like that <wink>. dr]

Today I riveted the aluminum stripes to the firewall with MilSpec fasteners on it. Look how stupid one could be!!  When I was finished I saw this - see pic. One stripe inverted!  Not a real issue but it tells you it´s time to have a rest!

VAF Family
First picture of My Wife and I in the aircraft

RV Grin Department ...Jim Piavis (RV-7)

One of our Program Managers (in the pax seat) on our MS Flight team has a lot of time flying the RV-6A model in the game...it was high time to take him for a real RV ride. Photo documentation indicates a good time was had by all!

Milestones
Moved to Airport ...John Trollinger RV-10

So my wife wants to move so the airplane had to find a new home as well. Selling a house with an airplane in the garage apparently is harder than to sell one without an airplane in the garage.

My friend and fellow RV-10 builder helped me get the fuse and wings to the hanger before a storm came through yesterday.  continue

Safety
Bird reminder

Flying north from Florida last week, overnighted in Va.  WX not too good next day so waited 1 day to continue north.  A/C was tied down & covered but forgot to install cowl plugs (normally hangered).  Rest of flight normal but.... Decided to start my annual so removed the cowls and quickly noticed bird dirt on top of cooling fins!  Closer look revealed nice little handful of straw in behind # 3 cylinder ....

It's nesting season... Plug those holes.
__________________
Dave Main

Guys and gals, please don’t forget to do a walk around ...Axel

This post is intended just to remind us (myself included) not to get complacent. In the past few months I have observed multiple mistakes by RV people that should have never happen. The first one was an oil door left opened during an airshow. In this particular case the pilot did his engine run up and did not see the open door. He was alerted by a wingman right before entering the runway. The second one was a tie down chain left attached to one wing. The pilot started his plane and his wingman alerted him of the situation. The one I saw today was another one that should have not happen. An RV taxied down the taxi way at Mojave, CA and I saw a red flag hanging at the bottom of the wing. It took me a few seconds to figure out it was the pitot tube cover. The pilot forgot to remove it before flight. I took off running to the closest RV and asked the guy to please pass the information along. A few minutes later I saw the RV take off and I made sure it did not have the pitot cover.

Please remember that the errors that we make as pilots can cause negative results not only to us but also to our families and friends. Please take the extra few minutes and check your plane. If not for you, for your passengers. Thank you and happy flying.

"The Machine" (VFR Flight following) ...Frank (ATC guy)

I've seen a lot of confusion on the board about flight following, or tracking a flight on flight aware, and why flight following is sometimes terminated or a new code is given to a pilot during a flight. I thought I would do a short write-up on how airspace works pertaining to VFR flights and their relationship with FSS and ATC.

There are two computers in the FAA, used by controllers. One is the NAS (national, also known as "the machine") and one is ARTS (local). Each center (all 21 of them) has its own NAS computer, called "Host" (the name isn't important and won't be mentioned again), and they all talk to each other across the country, which forms a national database of all IFR and participating VFR flights in the National Airspace System; this is why Flight Aware will show your flight almost every time when you talk to the Center, but only sometimes when you are talking to an approach control. Centers = in the NAS (machine), approach = maybe in there.

Approach Controls are very like centers in that they have their own computers (ARTS). These are local computers and they have very limited capabilities (by limited, i mean we put in all or part of your callsign and that's it). The reason for this is generally workload (or laziness <g>) related. Just as the Center computer communicates with other centers to form a national database, ARTS associates itself with one single computer (the Center whose airspace is over top of it) and one computer only. This means if the approach next door to mine is under Cleveland Center, and I'm underneath Chicago Center, I can't automatically "flash" your callsign to "hand you off" to the adjacent facility. At this point, your flight is either terminated an we instruct you to contact the adjacent facility, or we make a short phone call and you just hear a frequency change and are none the wiser.

So with ARTS, you're basically an "x" followed by three numbers. That's all we see. If controllers keep asking you "whats your destination today" on initial contact, you're probably in ARTS. If you were in "the machine" we would get a paper strip (most places) with your destination, type, and (rarely) route on it. You will generally also get the same code "subset," as well, ie 02xx or 45xx. if you get one of these that you recognize, you're in ARTS. NAS codes are random.

Notice we haven't mentioned Flight Service yet. The simple reason is, we don't talk to them much. They protect you by looking at your enroute time and whether or not you call them to tell them you're still alive. An important side note here is that it's still a good idea to file a VFR flight plan even if you're talking to ATC. For one, we don't put in your Search and Rescue info, and even if you give it to us, we really have no way (or time) to relay that to anyone. Secondly, we might terminate you 15 (or more) miles from your destination, and if you don't make it there, nobody will be waiting for your call.

In summary:
1) If you're talking to a Center, you'll probably get flight following the whole way and your family can watch you on Flight Aware (though unfortunately it's not a real return, just a general "estimation" of where you are. If you burst into flames, flight aware will still show you happily flying your course).

2) If you're talking to Approach, you can get put into the machine if you ask (realize that it's a bit of a pain but most will do it).

3) If you REALLY want to be in the machine (and i dont recommend making a habit of it, because it's a bit of an abuse of the system) you can file IFR and just tell the controller to amend you to VFR when you call clearance/ground. <wink>  Usually, we'll just amend your altitude and keep you in the system for flight following the whole way (we'll also have your whole intended route, instead of KXXX direct to your destination). I would still call FSS (after departure) as well and tell them that you're VFR and open/close as normal.

Clear as mud?

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
Stick Grip Simulator

Totally Off Topic


Fri, Apr 20, 2012.  1135z  
 
Morning!  Hoping to get out to the airport at least a little this weekend, but our daughter's Confirmation is this Sunday during Mass, and we have family coming in, so that's the priority.  Didn't we just Baptize this kid a year ago?  Oh, it's been sixteen years?  Geez, where does the time go...
  I may be on house and food detail, but hopefully can scoot out and get off the surface for a bit.  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!
   
 (contact)  Thoughts on safety

Fast stuff and Gas Hogs ...Brian Carroll

Dumas, TX (panhandle) is the place to stop for fast stuff and thirsty beauties! $4.65/gal...I only took 13gals. Don't get a photo op like this very often, especially in my neck of the woods. Kind of a nice Texas welcome.

It's Tulip time! ...Stephen Christopher RV-7 (Washington)


(more pictures)

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Alex DeDominicis' New RV-10 Panel...you can do RV-10 transition training in this!

click to enlarge

Usual suspects: AFS, Garmin, TruTrak, Stein and Geoff Combs (panel cutting)

related: Alex runs RVtraining.com

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Lint in fuel filter

Today I cleaned the servo inlet filter and to my surprise I found what looks exactly like the lint you find in the screen of the dryer at home.
It was a pea size ball of cotton looking stuff.

I am going through the whole system to make sure that there are no surprises and to try and figure out where it came from.  I know it can come from anywhere but I was just wondering if someone out there has seen this before so i can target my efforts.

thanks in advance!

Marco
RV-7

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
Socks and shoes for an RV12 ...Jan Hanekom (RVbits.com)

Well - after several requests from RV12 owners and builders we have now finished the first production set of RV12 Main Gear Intersection Fairings.

The Main Gear Fairings are made from the standard parts Vans supply for the other two seaters. The wheel pants and nose gear fairing are also from Vans. There might not be any gain by adding the main gear fairings, but it makes it much easier to then make and fit the Intersection Fairings.

I will explain the "how to" in a the Installation Document.  See pictures below. My apologies for showing them not painted.

Totally Off Topic

Rest in Peace Mr. Levon Helm....
(video clip with 'The Band' 11/25/76).
I wore 'The Brown Album' out on my turntable...

5 part series on the making of the 2nd album
...very worthwhile way to spend an hour or so of your day:
Part I
Part II
Part III
Part IV
Part V

...and keeping this airplane related, Levon Helm played 'Ridley' in The Right Stuff.


Thu, Apr 19, 2012.  1125z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety
 


Bruce Ray RV-8.  Click to enlarge.

 

Bob Axsom's Latest Speed Mod Testing ...smoothing the exhaust air.

Once I got it done I flew in very calm air at 6000 D alt as always. This configuration is exactly the same as the version tested on April 10 when the speed was 177.2. The earlier test on April 9 without the cutouts was exactly 3 knots faster at 180.2. Today's speed was 181.7 or 4.5 kts faster with the bumps than without them in the otherwise same configuration. Now this is good enough to fly in the Llano race Saturday but if I had time to make the new cover I agree with Gary and F1 Boss, the test results indicate that it would be faster.

This test was flown with the nav antenna on, the cooling air vents closed but not covered, tie down rings on (same as the previous tests).

CHTs (1-4) 356, 373, 361, 335 (4 is not trustworthy)
After the flight the fairing was cold to the touch.
I measured the distance from the firewall to the high point of the bump and it is 6 3/8".

 

more photos

In The Shop
PaulR's TCW Safety-Trim Mount

The DB connector is out in front of the rear seat pan and I drilled two holes in the proper location for the pot adjustment. I forget just what size but I found two plastic hole plugs to keep trash from falling in. I suspect a piece of electrical tape would work just as well.

Haven't flown yet but it all works as advertised.

VAF Family
Joined the Club

Hi everyone! I took delivery of the empennage kit yesterday. Can't wait to get started. I ordered the Cleveland Tool set, but the Main Squeeze is on backorder, hope to have it soon. I've been lurking for over a year and finally took the plunge.

Dan Alessi (Medford, NY)
__________________
RV-12 #654
N310DA (reserved)
Empennage - received, not yet started

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Tip Up Latch UHMW Plastic Idea....

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.

iFlightPlanner.com v3.0 Released....


"...export navigation logs to .GPX or Garmin .FPL files that
can be imported into the avionics via USB or SD card."

fmi: http://www.iflightplanner.com/Blog/Entry.aspx?ContentItemID=82&MPA=VAF

 

From Tina at Tina's Pilot Shop....


Overflow
New Water Tower in My Neighborhood

Flew over this yesterday midday and got a shot down the top - they just lifted main part up yesterday.

Click to enlarge.

related: video of how this gets done

Totally Off Topic


Wed, Apr 18, 2012.  1125z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety


from pilotbill.com

HOUSTON... We have an Eagle's Nest Project! ...RE Butcher post

A new campus has been added to the Eagle's Nest program, Clear Springs High School in League City, TX (JSC NASA area). Clear Springs HS is a Project Lead the Way certified campus for engineering studies, and with the assistance of Eagle's Nest founder, Mr. Bob Kelly and mentors from NASA, Clear Springs engineering instructor, Mr. Roger Elder, will lead the new Eagle's Nest project (EN-III) scheduled to begin with the Fall semester.

Friends of the RV-1, Inc., a 501(c)(3) Public Charity and sponsor of Eagle's Nest Projects, is excited to have a campus in NASA's back door. Eagle's Nest-III is off to a great start - Funding for the project was obtained with a single phone call to a local business, and NASA's Department of Education and Student Programs has agreed to assist in providing mentors. The Jennings County project (EN-I) will soon become a dual-credit course in Indiana, and the plan for EN-III is do the same in Texas. Eagle's Nest is breaking new ground in public education and you're invited to become a part of this innovative and exciting new program. **Eagle's Nest is a program that provides high school students an opportunity to build a "real" airplane (Van's RV-12), and at most campuses an opportunity to learn to fly it! Eagle's Nest projects are currently underway at Jennings County High School and the National Guard Patriot Academy.  more

In The Shop
Elevator work ...Mike Messer 8A

I Can't find my flap/fuselage problem (RV-8)

Yesterday I put the wings on the fuselage for the first time. After checking a tenth of time, I drilled the rear spar to set the incidence angle. Everything went good (zero sweep, squaring within a 1/32" 0.0 degree checked with numeric level and laser). Today I put the ailerons to set the neutral position and the flaps. I ground the fuselage side skin to let the pushrod go freely through the fuselage and seat floor. But here is my problem :
The flaps don't kiss the fuselage at the wing root. I checked the flap and aileron twist, it doesn't exist. I checked the wind incidence, it is good. The ailerons neutral position is ok.
On the photo below you will see the problem.

Am I missing something or is that normal?    lotsa suggestions

Continuing with canopy work ...Bruce Hill 9A

Springs fully compressed on Vetterman exhaust

The instructions that came with my Vetterman exhaust indicate that about three threads should show on the bolts that hold the tailpipes on. However, tightening them up that much pretty much fully compresses the spring. Is that how it's supposed to work?

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
External Alternator for the RV-12

Adding the External Alternator has been an interesting modification for my RV12 - EAB. With all of the avionics I needed the extra power. After inspecting where the alternator would go, it was identified modifications to the mounting bracket, hose placement, cowling, and cooling shroud would need to be done. Basically the alternator sits on the pilot side and conflicts with the left intake for the scat hose to the cooling shroud .

Started the mods over the last few weekends,
1. Design a modification for the existing alternator bracket. Allowing for clearance with the upper cowl. The bracket is being finalized; we worked by tacking first for placement. I hope to every all install this weekend
2. Prop extension for the 3 blade Sensenich
3. The cowl is approximately ¾ in longer
4. Modify the cooling Shroud - Relocated the 90 degree intake off the shroud to the left side.
5. Modify the Cowl - Intake mod, cut off the inter lip on the lower cowl and moved it to the left intake.

These pictures are a few days old and are of the ruff fiberglass work. The nice thing is the left side intake will help keep the alternator cool.

I will post more pictures of the finished project once done. I need to thank the guys at KPTW; Al, Ned, Mark, Scott, Dick for their suggestions / help and Bill for fabricating of the mounting brackets

Totally Off Topic



You read it wrong...
"Pen is broken....please use finger (on the credit card reader)."


Tue, Apr 17, 2012.  1128z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety

Richard VanGrunsven in the RV-1 off Daytona Beach. ...Bob Terry photograph.

Click to enlarge.

[ed. This will probably end up being the May wallpaper calendar!  dr]

Cedar Key with Diana ...Bruce Sacks

Daughter Diana and I spent half the day together flying down to Cedar Key, Fl. for a seafood lunch. She will soon be 18 and off to GSU in Atlanta where she has been admitted as an honor student. Our Cedar Key trip turned out to be an excellent opportunity for some father/daughter quality time. Something that may become harder to do as her life becomes more busy and she moves away for college.    continue

Photos - SARL Bluebonnet 150 (Taylor) ...RE Butcher

Here's a few of my shots from the SARL Bluebonnet 150 held Saturday (4/14/12) at Taylor Municipal Airport. Typical for an SARL event, the camaraderie was in overdrive, everyone had a great race, and no one left hungry!

VAF Family
N45678 FLIGHTS NOW FULLY BOOKED!!! ...Joel Graber family

As of a 11:13AM all of the seats in the airplane are now booked   Talya Renee 4lb 6oz.  Doing fine and looking good!


Safety


New video...

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
An Hour with My Friendly FSDO ...Paul Dye

Last week I was rummaging around my desk and ran across the application and letter of recommendation for the Repairman Certificate for our RV-3, licensed last December. I was in no rush to get it taken care of , since I really didn’t need it until it was time for the first Condition Inspection at the end of this year. But now I had a little extra time, so I threw it in my briefcase, hoping I’d remember to make an appointment with the Houston FSDO to get “Junior” added to my certificate (I already have a Repairman’s card listing my RV-8).

So last week I gave them a call, and was transferred to the chief maintenance inspector (“Bobbie” – never did get his last name). He took down my name, certificate number, the N-number of the airplane we were adding – and asked when next week I’d like to come in to the office. We settled on Monday afternoon at 1500, and he said that while he wouldn’t be there, he’d put it one of his guy’s calendars, and I was all set.  continue

Charity
VAF "Make a Wish" Request

I am writing to ask for help from the VAF community for a special 15 year old kid I know. His name is Alex Cuellar and he is currently battling an unknown type of malignant brain tumor. Here's some pictures and a brief bit of his story, from his mother, Michelle:

"Alex was born to proud parents, Michelle & Alejandro Cuellar, on August 29, 1995. On August 16, 2011, he was diagnosed with a very rare malignant tumor in the brain called Atypical Terratoid Rhamboid Tumor (ATRT for short). The doctors began very aggressive treatments using chemotherapy and radiation. Alex was hospitalized for several weeks with complications. His blood cell count dropped so low, that he had to receive multiple blood transfusions. As if to add insult to injury, genetic testing later proved that it was not ATRT, but an unknown malignant brain tumor. The doctors determined Alex could no longer be treated with chemo, because it made him so sick, and suggested immunotherapy might be the only option. Luckily, before immunotherapy treatment, the doctor called for another MRI. The tumor had stopped growing. They decided to stop all treatment and let him heal. Alex continues to get MRI’s every 3 months to make sure there is no tumor growth. His big challenge right now, is to gain weight. He currently weighs only 96 lbs. Getting back to his “normal” weight will be a slow process, because Alex has difficulty eating solid foods. He is only drinking instant breakfast shakes and eating soups. Before Alex was diagnosed, he was enrolled in flight school, earning hours towards his private pilot's license. He wishes to get back into flying, so gaining his strength back will help. The other problem is that this tumor was pressing on the third nerve, so he had vision issues at first, but it seems to be recovering. We hope that it fully recovers, because Alex wants to become a commercial pilot when he grows up."

Alex is a good kid, who loves airplanes. When he heard we were building an RV-10 in our garage, just had to come and see it. I conducted a short "Aircraft Building 101" course for him in my shop. I taught him how to measure, match-drill and drive all types of rivets using various methods. I showed him pictures of all the planes you could "build by yourself" in my Vans Book of RVs. Then, as is always inevitable when people like us talk about experimental aircraft, we talked about Oshkosh. As an EAA member, Alex was already on top of it, rattling off all kinds of information about this year's event. I asked if he'd ever been to OSH. He answered "no", and said it probably wasn't financially possible. I asked, "if you could go, would you be healthy enough to go?" He said he would certainly try. I told him "don't give up" and "if you can get to OSH, I promise you won't be disappointed." As he left, Alex told me he would ask the "Make a Wish" people, and that hopefully he would see me there this year...

My request is simple.. Assuming he can keep getting better, and that his doctors and parents sign off on it, is there any way we can get this kid to Oshkosh this year in an RV?
__________________
Mike Rettig
RV-10

Totally Off Topic

Messing with people at the office....
click to enlarge....

1.                  2.                   3.   


Mon, Apr 16, 2012.  1150z  
  Wind, weather and a NASCAR race two miles from the runway kept me from visiting the airport this weekend.  Hope you got to spend a little time with your RV this weekend, and have a nice Monday!  
 (contact)  Thoughts on safety

RV Grin number seven thousand something ...Bill Pendergrass RV-7A

Today was the day gents!  7 years, 1 month and 14 days.

Perfect weather at AVL this AM. Clear and calm (at least the weather was)Tower, safety and ground crew all ready.

Flew for about 30 minutes to make a few trips around the field at 3000 AGL, calm down, check the gauges (all better than expected) and a practice approach at 2000 AGL and then came around once more for a greaser

Ground crew quickly administered a very nice cigar from some joint south of Florida.

We peeled off the cowl and gave it a serious eyeballing. Nothing to speak of.

Diane and I went to lunch so I could settle down and then came back for a repeat flight with similar profile but just more engine time. It was getting windy by early afternoon and pretty bumpy so I called it a day at end of second flight.

Dang my cheeks hurt. REALLY, I'm not lyin'

Motivation

Video
RV6A Flight Down NASA Shuttle Strip - 747 Home

Safety
Video of My RV-6 Pre-takeoff Checklist (1080p HD)

...added to the 'Video Knowledge Cntr' section

Bird strike, no RV's injured

. . . But a C172SP is hurt.

I was on my big solo CC to punch the PPL ticket today. KLPR-KTOL-KMNN-KLPR, 201nm. Bouncing along at 110kts, you know how it is, the glider guys were up, if that helps tell you how bumpy it was as 4500'.

Anyway, it all came together, 2.3hrs in, I was turning into a 45 for downwind for 07 at KLPR, 1300' agl, 90kts, RH turn into the 45. 2.5 miles out. Standard stuff. Note a hawk above and to the left, considered him no factor based on his position and my direction. He turns into me and dives, WHAM! Aircraft rolls 30 deg left and yaws big left. Get that arrested, check airspeed, can't see any damage, but have a heavy left wing. Make the call of bird strike. Didn't have the time to do anything but call out status on the CTAF.  continue

Totally Off Topic
Hat Sighting at 'The Gun Store'


Fri, Apr 13, 2012.  1135z  
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!  
     
 (contact)  Thoughts on safety


N412BR "SWEETIE" First Flight...Bill Hollifield (Peel, AR).  Bill_H in the forums.

Today was the successful first test flight of RV-12 N412BR "Sweetie."

Sweetie was moved from the garage to the airport on Sunday April 8th, and the airworthiness inspection completed on Tuesday April 10th, registered as E-LSA.

This is kit number 412, assigned N412BR (from "Billy Ray" Hollifield - my actual name, and "Bravo Romeo" sounds better than "Bravo Hotel" over the radio!), and with a first test flight today (4/12) at 10AM CDT.
So - 4-12 / 4-12 / 4-12 !

The flight went great - no problems of any sort! 30 minutes, 2 landings. Not sure until the next flight, but she might not even need a rudder wedge.

Now, on to the detailed PAP checkout flights. Rather than do flight test #1 in the PAP, my EAA tech advisor wisely advised to "go up, feel out the plane, get comfortable, and land. Adrenaline usually prevents a bunch of detailed engineering data collection." Well, he was right! Stayed up 30 minutes, landed full stop, then did another T/O and full stop landing. It was WONDERFUL! I was also very glad I took the 5 hours of RV-12 transition training from RDOG and JETGUY in Denton Tx. a few months back. Thanks guys!!!

I believe that this is the first customer E-LSA Skyview example. (There is an E-AB in the UK with dual Skyview's - pics have been posted in this forum.)

Three pics below, taken the day before the inspection during taxi testing. You will note a few missing screws in the panel - because my next step was to adjust the potentiometers. They are all there now, as well as the rest of the interior. Abby at Flightline did a beautiful job!

SEE YOU AT OSH!

Oh - someone noted to me that the Ray Allen Stick Grips are upside down. I tested both ways and liked this best! From some other pics, seems I am not alone.

For many more pics, go to this public album

WHEW!!!
Bill Hollifield N412BR

In The Shop
Shannon Hicks RV-10 Panel Status ...at SteinAir

Workshop nears completion!! ...Tony Kelly

I am tooling up to order the -8 emp and figure I should have the workshop in order before I do. I had been neglecting my garage for the past 5-6 years now and as I finished any project around the house I would just dump whatver tools I had gathered onto the huge workbench. There was zero organization and the floor had seen better days. My wife and I hit the garage hard and the garbage man was not too happy with us. We must have had 20 bags of garbage out at the curb.

The harbor frieght tool box will be handy once I get it sorted. I am cutting foam for each tool and it is long and tedious. I also painted the floor and we ordered EXPENSIVE insulated garage doors that come next week. I already had the lighting in place and I had plumbed galvanized pipe for air. A number of years ago I insulated and drywalled (although I did not know what I was doing it is acceptable for a garage) I got a second hand gas heater from a friend and installed that some years ago as well.

This week I got some lumber and started building the EAA 1000 work benches. I am just about finished one of them. Complete with locking casters from my new favorite store, Harbor Freight!! .

additional pictures show 'beer mod'

Troubleshooting
Marks on wrist pin

I pulled a jug off my engine a few weeks ago to check the cam shaft as the engine has been stored for many years. While the cam looked great I noticed these markings on the wrist pin and piston rods.  Are these normal markings for an engine with 150hrs?  History: Engine has 150hrs SMOH. Was pulled from service, new cam installed then pickled for storage

Safety
Accident Dashboard (as of 4/10) ...don't let down your guard for a second.

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Getting rid of the rudder trim tab ...Steve Eberhart

Last Fall I hosted one of our EAA meetings at my hangar and demonstrated how to make a fiberglass nose gear fairing for an "A" model. The program started out with applying the clay, shaping it, and took it up to the point where a coat of epoxy gel-coat was applied. To be able to finish the clay modeling and get the gel-coat applied I didn't have much time for quality control issues; I actually was planning on redoing it after the meeting and making a finished fairing from the second clay model. Well, the first attempt didn't look too bad so I went ahead and made a mold and subsequently a fiberglass fairing.

After pulling the part from the mold it was pretty obvious that I didn't get the trailing edge of the fairing straight. If I aligned the leading edge and trailing edge of the fairing at the top of the fairing the gear leg would be offset to the airflow causing a rudder effect on the nose gear leg. Bummer, I was going to have to make a new mold. After looking at it for a while it dawned on me that it was offset in the direction that would push the nose to the right. I went ahead and finished up the part so it would make a stator vane out of the nose gear and test flew it.

The test flights were very interesting, ball centered with feet on the floor through out my usual cruise speed range. Pretty cool, my mistake turned out to be a pretty good solution to the right rudder usually needed on RVs. I haven't convinced myself if this solution is causing more or less drag than the usual rudder trim tab. Doesn't matter, my RV-7A is ball centered without a trim tab .

(from another Steve post)
It has about 50 hours on it. My plane is based at 3EV, a nice little grass strip, so it hasn't been babied. You will notice from the rear view pictures that the lower portion of the fairing is open at the back allowing the gear to flex back without causing any problems. In the front it has about a 1/4" extra clearance. I switched to the Grove nose wheel as soon as they were available so the gear doesn't flex anywhere near as much as the stock configuration does. The inside of the fairing, that rubs on the gear leg cover, has anti wear tape on the inside wear surface. It is hard to insure no wear on the landing gear fairings so they just get a periodic touch-up coat of white. That is why the wing leading edge and landing gear components were all painted white. Much easier to touch up.



Thrift
Stuff for sale (Dynon, TruTrak, VM1000, etc..)

Misc Stuff For Sale - Super Cheap Prices for Great Stuff!!

Overflow
Regularly Scheduled Maintenance on VAF Servers This Saturday Night

Totally Off Topic


Thu, Apr 12, 2012.  1058z  
   Wind picking up here in N.TX for the next several days, and a NASCAR event at the Texas Motor Speedway this weekend will keep the roads (and airspace during the race) clobbered.  
 (contact)  Thoughts on safety


First Flights on the Factory Site

First roll ...Bob Collins 7A

She traveled under her own power today for the first time. Took a trip down to the end of the ramp and back. I wasn't getting a reading on the GRT EIS 4000 RPM for the Lightspeed (got it for the mag, though).

I think I did something stupid and ran the wire from the optional output DSUB for the LIGHTSPEED and I think that's an analog feed. D'oh. Oh boy, I get to get under the panel in a tough spot and solder a wire to the input.

Whoo hoo!

Safety
RV-12 POH Changes ...posted on the factory site 4/10.  Dynon 180 and Skyview.

Milestone


Freshly painted: Hank 'rv-6hank' Ferguson

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Checkerboard Spinner Photos

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Frequently Asked Questions - VFR/IFR Certification ...Walt Aronow

Today I did a transponder check for an RV owner that had been flying without the required checks, he was under the impression that as the builder he was allowed to "certify" his own VFR/IFR tests. This is not the first time this has come up so I thought I would post this info as a "refresher". I copied this from my FAQ page on my site so it's there for your reference anytime you need it. Glad to answer any questions as well.  continue

Event News
RV-10 Check-In For Osh 2012 ...Wayne Gillispie

Dreamers, builders and flyers...Let's get together at Oshkosh 2012.
Man, I am excited! Even the wife and kids(9 & 12) are too. It will be our first time camping out after 23 yrs of marriage/first time to Osh/first time in WI/second long xc (have not had the first xc yet, ha).

We are planning on flying up Sun (vfr only). Camping at least two nights with our plane, depending on if the family funometer stays ROP. Hope to see some of you there. Now, to search for "camping how-to" articles. Any advice welcome too. I know to bring rain gear and OFF bug spray.

Fun with Photoshop ...RV-12 Rear Window

Totally Off Topic


Wed, Apr 11, 2012.  1132z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety

Travel Story Continued ...Troy Branch

In The Shop
Here is how I did ...Dynon AHRS Mount

Panel Mock Up Methods

Photoshop



Xpanel/Staples



Panel Planner



Plexiglass

VAF Family
I have a new bucking partner! ...Don Patrick

I'm at the point that I need a second set of hands for riveting the wing skins. My 12 year old daughter Lauren seemed pretty interested so, I took her in to the garage and showed her the rivet gun. After a few basics and trying it a couple of times on the work bench, it was time to hit the metal.  She did a great job...now that she can handle it, she's going to be a great help on the project

Video
A couple of new RV-7 vids ...music used won't allow embedding, so you'll have to click on the linky.

 

New Vids ...same music-used embedding restriction.  Click on linky to view.

 

Milestones
'Sweetie' passes inspection!

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
Bonehead Composites ...production model.

Here's the first one finished today. Anyone interested please contact me.  This one is already spoken for.

Totally Off Topic


Tue, Apr 10, 2012.  1148z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety
 


Mark Burns.  RV-7A (Ruston, LA)
 

Five Months to First Flight ...factory FB page.



(more)

● Welcome www.pilotportraits.com 

...new advertiser in the previous day's news section.

In The Shop
Canopy... I loved it!!! ...AJ Wessels

Ever since I started my Build I always read about everybody fearing the canopy and so much dislike for it.

I must admit, I just did my slider and man o man it was the most fun and rewarding part of the build thus far! Yes you have to be careful and use your grey matter a bit but it really is a piece of cake.

So anybody fearing to start, just get stuck into it <g>.  more photos

● Busy weekend....

VAF Family
● Hat sighting....balloons count.

Video
First Engine Start ...Steve M.

Finally got to the first start today! I had serious questions about whether my 4.5 yr old, highly-abused Odyssey would crank it over but piece of cake! Even with two plain Slick Mags the thing fired after only 2-3 blades! Thanks Aerosport Power! No drips, fire, or smoke! Only issues:

1. My Dynon tach values need to be changed b/c my RPM was only reading half of what I finally figured out it should have been. As a consequence, I was running at higher RPM than I intended until I figured out what was going on.

2. I might have some radio noise, perhaps from the alternator (Brand new Plane Power) but, honestly, things seemed to be happening so fast that I really didn't have time to see if my intercom settings might have been the culprit. We'll see on the next go around.

Per Mahlon's instructions via one of Paul Dye's posts, I kept everything under 300F on the CHT, let it cool, and then ran it for just a minute a second time with a portable tachometer to confirm that my RPMs were double what they showed on the Dynon.

As someone else recently mentioned... if you have a chance, have a video camera inside the cockpit to record what the Dynon is showing. Other than keeping my eyes on the CHT and oil pressure indications, I was having a hard time processing everything I was seeing! I suppose I could try to download the Dynon data, but that's another learning curve itself!

Anyway, all in all, a good use of my day in between church and Easter dinner!

 

Troubleshooting
QB Stick Interference

I have not hooked up my linkage yet but I noticed the fwd limit of my control stick was limited by rib interference before going over the center of the spar.  This was a quick build and it appeared that the ribs had already been cut. Has anyone else had to trim more material off their ribs on a QB?

...Grind the rib to clear Jim...

...Wait till you have all your controll surfaces hooked up and adjust to proper travel limits. There is a good chance you won't need to do anything...

...As everything in life the answer is in the middle and everyone is right.  First setup your control system then grind where needed. I needed to trim a good amount so no worries its a common issue...

...Yeah, he's right. Your forward travel of your stick probably isn't going to reach this point anyway -- the elevator stop will dictate that -- but I had to grind away a little bit here. Not much, but a little bit.  Move on. It'll be OK...


Tank venting

I noticed yesterday as I was removing the fuel cap from my right side tank, there seemed to be a vacuum in the tank. This was exhibited by a reluctant-to-be-removed cap and the sound of air moving into the tank once I got the cap off.  Does this possibly indicate a blocked fuel vent? Is there a way to test it?

...Yes, I would suspect a blocked vent for sure.  I am able to slip a section of 1/4" hose over my vents, and blow in to check for blockage.  Do this with the fuel cap off-----otherwise the tank will act like a balloon, and will blow back at you when you stop. Plus with the cap off, you can hear if it is free....

Safety
Thoughts on Getting Out ...Terry Lutz

As you might be aware, there was an accident at Duxford last year, where during a break to downwind the No. 2 pilot, flying a Skyraider, lost sight of his leader, flying a P-51.  The wing of the Skyraider hit the belly of the Mustang, jamming the controls.  The pilot was forced to bail out at very low altitude.  He made it because he was very well prepared to do so.

There was a similar accident a few years ago, where two RVs ran together after the break to downwind.  It was in Illinois, I believe, and it was fatal for at least one pilot.

The reason that I am passing this along is mainly for the food for thought among our RV community.   Here are some of the things I see as key points:

  • The pilot was ready.  He had thought in advance what he had to do, and did it flawlessly.
     
  • The canopy came off cleanly.  This is something the RV community should work on.  I have looked at the comments about this, and I'm not sure that release pins on each side for a slider are going to work because the canopy is still attached to the rail at the back.  I don't have a solution for that, nor do I know what can be done for a tip-up.  For the slider, it might be as simple as fixed handles on either side so you can jerk the canopy back positively, and hold with one hand until you are out (the other hand going for your parachute D-ring).
     
  • The Mustang pilot hit his head on the horizontal tail as he went out, but he was wearing a helmet.  The helmet he had was made in New Zealand.  The folks that make them were at Oshkosh last year, and I spent some time talking to them.  Good equipment, but at $2600, it's out of range for most of us.  The RV community could do the research and find a company that can make good helmets for a reasonable price.
     
  • Final point is about comm cords.  If you are wearing a nice David Clark headset or similar, and you have to get out fast, it is going to jerk your head a bit when you come to the end of your comm cord.  The standard plugs are not designed to quick release.  If you look at the expensive helmets from New Zealand, and at military gear, you will notice a quick-disconnect about a foot from your head.  The plugs are commercially available, and one thing we could do as a community is develop a conversion for headsets cords that installs the quick-disconnect.  That is one step toward a safer and possibly successful exit

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
All Broken In… P.Dye

It was almost a month ago that we decided to replace all four cylinders on the Valkyrie’s 1500-hour engine due to excessive oil consumption and low compression. It really didn’t take very long to get the new jugs in hand (a couple of days from A.E.R.O.), the old jugs removed, the engine compartment cleaned up, and the engine re-assembled. All-in-all, about a week for the mechanic work while doing my normal job. Unfortunately, I also had a week-long business trip and another week spent at Sun ‘n Fun thrown in there, so it wasn’t until last week that we were really able to fly the airplane and break in the new Nitrided Lycoming cylinders.

The break-in philosophy was as documented by Lycoming, ECI, and Mattituck (all three have handy reference guides). 65-75% power to provide adequate but not excessive BMEP to seat the rings, shallow climbs to keep lots of cooling air going through the cowl, careful monitoring of CHT’s to make sure that things didn’t get out of hand, and richer-than normal mixtures to help with temperatures (and probably to buy another yacht for the CEO of Exxon…). As expected, the first few hours exhibited CHT’s in the low 400’s, peaking about 430, and oil temps (reflecting the heat that had to be removed ) up around 220. I tried to keep the flights confined to the early morning hours to provide for lower ambient temps, since summer seems to have arrived on the Texas Gulf Coast.  continue

Thrift
Towbar ...DanH

A personal tradition; I build a new towbar for every new project. Thought you might like to see this one.


(more pics)

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
Check out New Sportsman 2 interior ...Darin (Calgary, AB)

Just wanted to show the results of my interior upgrade. Sold my previous seats on VAF to Bruce Swayze. Luke at Aero Classic talked me into the Sportsman 2 side panels as being more functional with more pockets, etc. a couple guys on the field have the Aviator sides, and that is what I had intended to go with originally. After now seeing side by side I thank Luke for a solid recommendation as the side are functional, look good and you gain about 1.5" each side...so a little roomier. Thanks Luke.

Totally Off Topic


Mon, Apr 9, 2012.  1126z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety

20ll RV SAFETY OVERVIEW: Dick VanGrunsven...from the factory FB site.

For the 2011 year, RV accident rate shows good news and bad news. In the USA there were 7 fatal accidents in RVs, totaling 7 lives lost. While in itself tragic, this is notably better than the 14 fatal accidents totaling 19 fatalities for the 2010 year. Historically, the number of RV accident has risen as the fleet size has grown. Despite this, I believe that the RV accident rate has been decreasing slightly over time, but the 2011 rate was dramatically lower than before. While this is not a reason to become complacent because it may be just an anomaly, it does show a downward trend that I hope we can maintain. I want to congratulate the thousands of RV pilots who are working diligently to fly safely and to help others to do the same.

Of those 7 fatal 2011 RV accidents (in the USA):

One was an apparent suicide.
One was an in-flight collision involving planned formation flight.
One happened during low level aerobatic flight.
One apparent loss of control while in a traffic pattern.
Others yet undetermined because the NTSB investigations haven't been completed and reports posted.

The overall reported number of RV accidents increased somewhat.  This means that there were more "fender bender" accidents occurring, or accidents that had less than fatal consequences. The numerous "Loss Of Control on runway" accidents indicate a need for higher piloting skill levels, better training, and more practice.

It is easy to assume that anyone who has successful flown his RV for a reasonable number of hours, say 50 or more, has mastered that aircraft and is comfortably proficient. This is not necessarily true. Some pilots may have simply avoided accidents over a number of flight hours without having truly mastered their aircraft sufficiently to safely handle all likely flight conditions. While it is true that all pilots can benefit from more practice and training, some are obviously in greater need than others. Unfortunately, some pilots are regularly operating on the ragged edge of losing control. We need to be self-critical in order to better ourselves, and constructively critical of others and diplomatically attempt to help them seek means to improve their flying skills.

One obvious opportunity to get more training is through the bi-annual flight review. I think that this FAA requirement is too often viewed as an inconvenient necessity rather than an opportunity. We can either "get it over with" or "get something out of it". Find a good instructor, friend or otherwise, and ask him (or her) to make you sweat for an hours or so. As with a good session at the gym, you'll feel better afterwards.

Over the years I have taken many flight reviews ranging from the "meaningless formality" to the "instructive and humbling". The later is preferable.

My most recent was with my brother Jerry (rated CFI for over 55 years) in the right seat. Now this could easily fall into the "inconvenient necessity" category, but it didn't. He knew in advance that I could probably meet any reasonable standard of piloting ability for normal flight. The objective of this flight then became one of exploring more emergency situations and abnormal circumstances. There is always more to be learned and more opportunities to learn from each other. We both elevated our knowledge and skills as a result. As a 27,000 plus hour pilot with a fist full of licenses and ratings, he still recognizes the need to learn more. How about you?

As I have mentioned before, I am a member of a Safety Coalition working on means of lowering the accident rate of Experimental-Amateur Built Aircraft. Our challenge is that of devising programs and means of reaching all E-AB pilots and motivating them to improve their flying skills and habits. Safety results primarily from actions taken at the individual pilot level, and not necessarily from committee decisions made in Washington D.C. or Oshkosh, WI. It's up to us to keep our fellow pilots safe and ourselves in flight.

Keep up the good work. Based on 2011 data, RV safety is approaching that of overall GA, and is considerably better than that of the general E-AB fleet. But, we can do even better! Go team go!

As we are by far the largest "type" segment of E-AB aircraft, that very fact causes us to be viewed as the standard bearer for this segment of GA. Hopefully the things we are doing right, such as emphasis on transition training, can serve as a model for others.

Have many enjoyable and safe flights this year.

Flying with kids can change some plans

RV-12 Wiring Diagrams Now Available

"Today Van’s posted two complete wiring diagrams for the RV-12, along with links to (free!) software that will display them. Once RV-12 builders download the software and drawings, they will have the com...plete RV-12 wiring schematic at their fingertips. Part numbers for individual plugs and harnesses, wire colors and wires sizes and pin-outs are clearly shown.

Using the full-color web makes it possible to take advantage of search and zoom features. Drawings are accessible from a computer, iPad, iPhone, Android devices, etc. No matter where you are - at home, in your shop, or fifty miles away in a hangar, the information is available.

To access the diagrams, visit the Download Page and scroll to the bottom. Be sure to READ the entire Electrical Schematic Instructions.

We are looking forward to using this new tool that literally puts us on the same page with builders. It will become even more useful in the future, as we are incorporating this ability directly into upcoming models."

In The Shop
Wheel Pants - Alignment

VAF Family
First Helper, First Flight

Milestones

Troubleshooting
Loud Bang During Hot Start

The Elusive (sensor) Short..........Found!

Safety
Bird Nest

1 inch away from a very bad day-Cowl Horizontal Piano Pins

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
 Climb CHTs and CARB Heat

Unvented Cover Done and Ready for Test

Event News
Sun n Fun Winners

RV-1 Gets some AOPA Press

...front and center.  Ain't bad!

Overflow
Shirt Sighting

Totally Off Topic


Fri, Apr 6, 2012.  1116z 
   Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend! 

      (contact)  Thoughts on safety

Ken Tattersall's Interesting Graphics

Graphics have been done since last fall and the flight time turned 115 hours since first flight last January. Serge, the graphics guru, had free reign in the design and wanted to do something that was personal to me. Can you guess what my day job is?

RV-8 Bird Strikes ...Jeff Sandor post.

"Two guys I hanger with had bird strikes on Tuesday evening.  Flight of 2 RV8's have bird strikes at 180 kts. Not sure who ran into who.....damage to 1st RV8 consists of a Nerf football-size dent in the leading edge of the tank. Second RV8 took it right through the front windshield.

Both landed without incident other than a few stitches and brown shorts for the second RV8 aviator. No idea what kind of bird or how big. All I can say is WOW."

[ed. Good argument for wearing a helmet...or at least sunglasses.  dr]

more photos

RV-1 Photos - Sun-n-Fun ...Ernie's pics

"When you view the photos you'll have no doubt that Van has re-connected with his RV-1. Van spent 90% of his time at the RV-1 tent, and most of that time was spent working on his bird... tape measure in hand, on his back, on his knees, in the cockpit, and turning wrenches. I anticipated taking photos of visitors, but as it turned out the photos are more of a documentary of Van re-connecting. Enjoy"

In The Shop
RV-7 Cowl , slider was too

Where did you start the cowl installation, Top first or Bottom first.  Vans suggests connecting the two halves at the front as step one. Problem with this ( if you check the picture where the halves connect, at the spinner end) the two halves are not parallel.

There are no trim lines molded into the top half, as suggested by Van's. Without a reference point from which to make measurements a had to assume the top half was already cut to size.

You will also notice the huge difference cowl to spinner spacing between the top and bottom halves.

Not a very well written thread, still a little frustrated. If you can make sense of this thread then please explain your installation sequence.

VAF Family
Subwaybob and daughter

Motivation
Springtime in Texas ...couple photos from a lunchtime flight yesterday. 

Builder  Mods
Clint Hoese Made Some RV-12 Stabilizer Tips

Contact (210) 497-3801 and/or youngoak@yahoo.com if you have questions.

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
Upcoming Builder Class ...SynergyAir

(from Wally at SynergyAir)
The Quick-Building the Vans Quickbuild class offers the unique opportunity to work through all the major decisions involved in building your own RV in just 5 days!  

If time is important to you, and you want to get it flying, while saving months in the building process: This class is a must. Learn how to make your kit into an airplane quickly, safely and save money as you do it.  Wally Anderson of Synergy Air and Gary Wirrell of Aerotronics guide you through the build process, showing you the most efficient assembly and installation methods, all the tricks to make your work look like a pro, and how to save money while planning and building your RV.

But don't just listen to us, hear what others who have taken the class have to say:

 
http://youtu.be/lEjuC378AM4

Class participants are also eligible for special group pricing directly from suppliers: Many students have more than paid for the class with the savings they've received through these special offers!

Quick-Building the Vans Quickbuild is offered April 23- April 27 in Sunriver, Oregon. Lodging is available and the first 3 who sign up get a discount!

Check out more information at http://synergyair.com or email us at wally@synergyair.com

From Sensenich...

From Pat Hatch

I’ve been getting a good response to my first post on the Trim Relay Boards, so I’ve decided to take it to the next level. It’s been kind of a fun venturing into the entrepreneurial world, so I set up a little storefront site to see where this goes.  more

Overflow
From HappyNews.com


more

Totally Off Topic

 


Thu, Apr 5, 2012.  1133z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety

Making it Fit – Adapting the RV-1 for its Designer ...Paul D.

Huh? Does that even makes sense? I mean, here is an airplane designed and built by a guy (Richard VanGrunsven) for his own use – surely, he built it to fit himself like a glove…right? Well of course he did, but that was close to 50 years ago. Van is the same height that he was then, and his still-slender form has no trouble fitting in the cockpit – but the RV-1 is a tiny airplane, and the pilot has to fold their legs into a small space between the firewall and the seat. Flexibility is unfortunately an attribute of youth, and as the years go by, motions that were natural become more difficult. So yes….we had to do a little work on the “ONE” in order to make it possible for Van to fly it again after all those years.

The fundamental problem with the pedal geometry in the RV-1 is that the distance from the seat to the firewall forces anyone with a long leg to bend their knees at a pretty tight angle. This in turn means that the lower leg is more vertical than horizontal, and therefore the ankle is cocked pretty far as well. With heels flat on the floor (as many pilots prefer to fly), the rudder bar is under the ball of the foot, but the sole of the foot is almost vertical. Rocking your toe forward to get to the brakes takes a lot of effort if you aren’t as flexible as a teenager. Since the brake pedals in the RV-1 (as in most aircraft) are about six inches above the rudder bar, many have to slide their feet up, removing their heels from the floor, in order to get any real leverage on the brakes. But this is very hard to do with the knees highly bent – especially with an older human’s flexibility limitations. The design of the RV-1 makes braking extra difficult with the heels on the floor because the vertical part of the “T” that forms the brake pedal is “recessed” towards the firewall – you can’t easily cheat and get braking by pushing on the vertical instead of going all the way up to the brake tube.  continue

In The Shop
Skyview Fired Up ...Scott Schmidt RV-12

After getting the panel powder coated, we fired up the panel and so far everything is working great. I still need to do more on the Skyview to configure it but all the switches seem to work. Just need to swap a couple of pins to make the trim go the right way.
I love the wiring on this panel, just need to finish it up and button everything down.


click for larger images

Troubleshooting
Engine Starting Problem

Recently I've been having problems starting my engine. I have a 6 with a new lycoming O-360 A1A. Carb, standard mags and a wood prop. It always started fine. I've got 300 hours on the plane now and I seem to be having trouble starting when cold. I have a vans primer, solinoid and primer lines to three cylinders. I used to prime for a few seconds and she would always start fine. Now it pops, backfires tries to start. Sometimes I think it's just me doing something wrong, priming too much or not enough but it seems to be getting worse. The plugs I changed at about 100 hours. it was running ruff. I haven't touched them since. once running it runs perfect, smooth, maybe 20 or 30 rpm drop on mag check each side. Could it need new plugs or a plug cleaning? I was also thinking maybe the timing is getting out on the mags, I haven't touched them either. Any ideas?

  Some Replies:

I used to have a O-540 A1A in a Comanche that started having the same symptoms as you. Started perfectly and then the starting problems began to get progressively worse. After ruling out the primer system and plugs we finally pulled the mags and were glad we did. My impulse coupling on new Slicks was coming apart at 500 hours. When I talked to Custom Airmotive about it he indicated that the A1A engine likes to go thru left mags. Not sure whether that's true or not but it was on mine. I think you should pull them and have a look


Richard, I have an O-360-A1A with 1300 hrs on it. I don't have a primer system what so ever. Cold start procedure is: fuel pump on, mixture rich, throtle off. Start prop spinning and pump the throtle (once or twice only). Engine usually starts a blade or two after the "pump"!

On my engine, I have noticed that if it becomes hard to start the mag timing is off. Strange as it sounds, if my mags get out of "perfect" time it won't start near as easy


I'm inclined with those suspicious of the impulse coupler - sounds like you are not getting the spark at the right time for start. The impulse coupler can get sticky when it's cold, and if it doesn't work, then you're firing the spark way to early when the engine is just being rotated by the starter


I have the same combination as you and at the same hours my A1A would not start when cold out, no primer. 200 hours on the plugs and the gap was close to .022", closed them down to .016" and it started great. Also at similar times had a condenser fail on the impulse mag, if it would start it would run great. Quick test for the condenser- with engine running turn key (mags) off watch mech. tach let engine spin down to cranking speed (about 300 rpm) then turn impulse mag on, the engine will stumble its way up to about 600rpm then smooth out. Condensers work harder at low rpms


I had the same problem with the O-320 in my RV-6 a couple of years ago. My engine was getting very hard to start, but the mag checks were always good once it was running.

Check your points setting and the condition of the points. The points setting directly effects the strength of the spark. I replaced the points in the left mag. You wouldn't think it was the same engine

Safety
Latest Dashboard Graphic

...(1) fatal accident every (6) days.  Please take steps to actively promote and follow safety procedures.  I'll post updated graphs monthly as friends at EAA HQ and/or FAA fwd them to me.

Totally Off Topic


Wed, Apr 4, 2012.  1151z  
   The tornadoes yesterday, all 12 of them, missed our neighborhood and airport, and all my RV friends here seem to be OK.  It was kinda close.  You might have seen the video of the tractor trailers getting sucked up a few hundred feet in the air.  Crazy stuff.  Susie grabbed her wedding ring and the dog to bring with her to the downstairs bathroom storm shelter - I grabbed a laptop with backup copies of this site, and the software to publish it!  The kids were in lockdown at school.  I was on the phone with Stein at the time, "If the phone cuts out...that would be the tornado."  How often does a guy get to use THAT sentence?
   On a more positive note, today marks the five year anniversary of me doing this site full time.  Susie, Audrey, Tate and I would like to thank from the bottom of our hearts those who help keep it afloat.  It means everything (figuratively and literally) to us.
  
 (contact)  Thoughts on safety

First flight ...Tomas Johansson RV-4 (Sweden)

 

Afternoon Flight in the Andes ...Lee Logan

Just got back from a business trip to Santiago, Chile and while there, hooked up with Fernando Abasolo, the builder of the spectacular RV-8 that has already been seen on these pages. Fernando was kind enough to give me a late afternoon flight from his home field out over the Andes to the east of Santiago.

My airborne photos are not good at all (sorry!) because of the canopy reflections caused by the late afternoon sun, but it was smooth even at 13,000'+ and Fernando gave me a really great tour of the area. He built his -8 in only about two years and his attention to detail and craftsmanship had me drooling with envy. We flew over the great city and then off to the northeast toward Aconcagua (actually in Argentina, about 100 km away and at 22,800'+, a bit too high for us to challenge!). Crossed over the mountains of the front range to see snow at altitude on mountains 2-3 ranges back. Flew within 5nm of Argentina as we rounded around to the south and after an hour or so, returned home as the sun was setting out over the Pacific. Sweet!  continue

Ghost back from paint shop ...Rick Woodall (multiple shots)

In The Shop
RV-8A N958RV ...Kai's 'My RV Build Project' entry.

Multiple photos.

RV-8 #81646 ...DJR's 'My RV Build Project' entry.

Multiple photos.

Totally Off Topic

40 wins - 0 losses
Congratulations to my hometown and Alma Mater



Note 2011 Heisman trophy winner Robert Griffin III in the front row (Baylor graduate).


Tue, Apr 3, 2012.  1127z     (contact)  Thoughts on safety

First flight of N729PG ...Paul Gray RV-7A

Hello everyone! I finally flew the RV7A for the first time. I did have some CHT's higher than I wanted but they came down when not climbing. It flew hands off straight and level with no signs of a heavy wing. The visibility simply can't be described... I'm use to a cessna 152! After landing I found no indications of any problems/leaks. Here is a shot of my RV GRIN along with a link to a short video of the flight.

 

In The Shop
Solo Wing Skinning

1 down 1 to go!

Making some progress thanks to tips from you guys.

Had help offers from Jerry and Craig but I couldn't nail down any times when I knew for sure I'd be able to work on the plane.

Video
Flying over Lufkin, TX ... Steve Reeves

 

Milestones
● Pink Slip!

Ed Kranz RV-10 HS Done (from his 'My RV Build Project' thread)

Totally Off Topic


Mon, Apr 2, 2012.  1135z  
  Morning!  Plan 'A' was to get out to the airport for a bit over the weekend, but our washing machine began to leak Friday afternoon.  Since I didn't win the lottery this past Friday, I went ahead and worked on that in lieu of flying (maybe it would have helped if I had actually bought a ticket).
  Hope you had a nice weekend also, and sorry you didn't win either.
  
 (contact)  Thoughts on safety

Van flies the RV-1 ...for the first time since 1968.  Four videos.

- RV-1 arrives at Spruce Creek

- Featured in Wired Magazine ...Danny and Marthajane King with it.

        

- RV-1 Headed North (pics)

        

April Wallpaper

In The Shop

Motivation
Montana Thunderstorm ...Bryan Douglass photo

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Found during conditional inspection

Bob Dean found one of his gear bolts hanging down when he pulled the cover plate for gear bolt torque check.

Here are the fact given to me by Bob.

1) Time on aircraft: 617 hours.

2) The torque on these bolts are checked once a year at my annual inspection.

3) I have never notice a problem, perhaps one of the bolts needed a little tightening over the years.

4) I had marked both bolts on both sides with Torque-seal to help detect movement.

5) The first picture with the bolt protruding is just the way I found it when I removed the inspection plate.

6) Inside the gear tower, the nut was totally off of the bolt. I cannot remember if the washer was still on the bolt or not. The bolt was sticking up through the gear tower; it seems like at least 3/16 of an inch, perhaps 1/4 inch.

7) I was using the the proper low profile metal lock nut. The threads were stripped, and you could see little metal filings.

8) The washer was the one that came with the kit. I am assuming that it is an AN960-616. As you mentioned they have replaced it with a 062 25783054.

9) The washer was bent. Hopefully, you can see it from the second picture.

10) The other bolt on this gear leg was loose. It took about a full turn of the bolt to get it properly torqued.

11) I have not properly check the other gear leg yet, but I do not see any problems from the visual inspection.

I am going to replace all four bolts with new bolts, new hardened washers and a new nuts.
__________________
Danny King

Off Topic