is a small, honor system webezine trying its best to be a laid back virtual watering hole for builders and pilots of Van's RV kitplanes.  Here we roll civil, don't talk politics, don't employ attention engineers or record keystrokes.  Hopefully after visiting occasionally, you leave VAF a little happier and motivated than you arrived.    Brought to you by the Reeves family

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April Wallpaper

Advertise on VAF.

April 13, 2021.  Issue #5,318.
     Need a Contract SIC?  Use Me!

My RV Weekend ...lotsa folks RVating


Stuck in Vacaville CA

Anyone in the Vacaville/Bay area have a starter for an O-320?
Cole Melby
1992 6A


Flying Passion - A Cautionary Tale

I will try and keep this as brief as I can. If you are a current builder and not flying much, or the owner of a finished bird and you fly less than 50 hours per year, this tale is for you.

Like many of you, I took my good health a little for granted. I took all the precautions, ate right, didn't drink or smoke, and visited my doctor regularly. I was a picture of health right up to 58 years old, then WHAM. Long story short, in 2012 I dealt with the aftermath of having Stage 4 cancer and the impact chemotherapy treatments had on my body. I was able to initially deal with these challenges and even built my RV-12 as a mental recovery treatment but ultimately, I had to give up my passion entirely in 2016. Fortunately, in my 30 years of aviation, I was able to achieve nearly all my goals and dreams. I built multiple times, won an award at AirVenture, and visited 42 of the lower 48 states.

My point to all this is to remind you that your aviation future is not a foregone conclusion. God has a way to setting you on a different path than what you have planned for yourself. Get that RV out of the hangar and go places, fly, enjoy the freedom, whatever drives your aviation passion, just DO IT. Tomorrow may not be an option.

Do I miss aviation? Every single day. Every time there is a CAVU day, or I hear an airplane fly overhead, I think of all the great times I had going places, meeting great people, and seeing our country from 3K feet. I miss it dearly, and would love the opportunity to engage in my passion once more. But that's not going to happen, and it's an outcome that all of us ultimately face somewhere down the road.

Now, I didn't write this so anyone would feel sorry for me. Don't. I'm doing fine and I use my energies on different passions now. I bought a business with my two sons and it's going great. I also have four grandsons under 4 years old that love to go fishing with Poppy. My life is wonderful even without aviation. But don't take circumstances for granted. Get your bird finished or drag it out of the hangar and dust it off. Top off the tanks and launch!
Randy Pflanzer


Quirky Things Seen From The Air in Your RV ...Vlad entry

Somewhere in Utah in the middle of nowhere. I have no idea what it is.


Critique please guy chimes in

I started the practice kit today. It was a great learning experience. I have two questions. I had some oilcanning on the lap joint. I started riveting from one end and moved to the other. I think the oilcanning is from some error stacking from my new guy match drilling. The second is the two flush rivets on the angle. There is a gap between the angle and sheet. I feel this is from to shallow machine countersink on the angle.. Thoughts and thanks.


Crankshaft pitting

how bad is this?


Dealing w/Tip Up Rain ...FlyinTiger

I recently made a trip to Kentucky from South Carolina. I parked for three days and my RV-7 tip up endured heavy rain off and on for a good 24 hours during the time it was parked outside on the ramp.

I intended to use tape to seal the front gap (small but still there) and the rear canopy overlap from water intrusion. I wanted the tape to be removable without leaving residue, so I considered the utility of painter's tape of some kind.

I was visiting family, but decided to check on the plane each day to verify my tie downs, control locks and canopy leaks. I elected not to use a canopy cover since there would be a lot of wind over the course of three days. I've seen cases where a canopy cover has scratched aircraft that were parked outside during storms. A canopy cover can prevent water from getting into the fuselage for a passing afternoon storm without worrying too much.

Because I use wax on my plane the tape didn't stick well on the canopy area. I use Plexus on the clear canopy which prevented the tape from sticking well to the rear canopy. I'm not sure a more robust tape would stick any better.

In the end I got a few drops of water in the fuselage and baggage area, but it dried out quickly when I opened up the canopy and gave it some warm air and sun.

I've seen the avionics cover that goes down under the canopy and I might get one of those eventually if my attempts to seal the front of the canopy are unsucessful. It takes any water that might get in and sheds it off to the sides to prevent contact with anything back there.

Flightline Interiors has such a cover for sale:HERE

Instrument cooling concerns while under a fabric cover have cropped up on the forums here. I suppose there's benefits and drawbacks for every accessory. I mostly fly on sunny days and park in a hangar. Maybe tape is the best solution for occational rain storms while tied down outside.

I have some weather stipping from McMaster Carr that I intend to try. It has a 3M sticky side. There are so many types of weather stripping available so I may have to try a few different shapes and thicknesses to get it just right so the canopy still closes easily while being sealed. This is the harder part...


Sunday:  8:21pm Takeoff

I added 2.5 hours of night Sunday evening to the 100-required-for-ATP, almost all of it holding at SKYLA on the VOR 18 at KXBP (within gliding distance of the runway).  I'll say it again....I don't like flying at night single engine. 

The new landing lights are amazing.  I'll get some pics online in the future re: those.  This first flight was mostly an equipment shakedown - baby steps when in the dark.  The stars were nice - on each northbound leg I looked over Orion, Canis Major and Taurus...with Mars right there front and center between the horns.  Thoughts of Ingenuity.  Crawled in bed at 11:50pm.

16.5 more hours to go.

Possibly the most boring night flight in human history.
Click if you don't believe me.
Works better if you play Benny Hill music.

30kts of wind aloft raised and lowered the GS in the hold.


VAF Calendar

Upcoming Events for the Next 60 Day(s)
04-13-2021: SUN 'n FUN Aerospace Expo / Fly-In
04-14-2021: SUN 'n FUN Aerospace Expo / Fly-In
04-15-2021: SUN 'n FUN Aerospace Expo / Fly-In
04-16-2021: SUN 'n FUN Aerospace Expo / Fly-In
04-17-2021: SUN 'n FUN Aerospace Expo / Fly-In, Houston area RV lunch
04-18-2021: SUN 'n FUN Aerospace Expo / Fly-In


Mothership Jobs Open listing (CNC Programmer)


----->>>>> 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.


Would You Build an "RV STOL Super Cub"?

If yes, let me know and I'll add your name in the folder.  I've created a 63-page sales pitch
[ed. 8/2020 update....I have
100+ names saying they will order it NOW and continue to get emails saying the same that I'm just filing away.  We've established demand <g>.]

Watch video (27 sec)


Off Topic


Need a contract SIC?
Hoping to supplement VAF with some side work.

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