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February 28, 2019.  Issue #4,770

Pic from the archives (2007).  Scorch takeoff.  dr pic.


RV-10 Project Switzerland

Good day,

Just a few words to announce our RV-10 project, started in August 2018. We just love every moment of it so far!

Our blog is also online, it is not a technical one but rather a place where we will document and share this great adventure with 3 to 5 articles per year.
Many have done, or are doing, a detailed build blog and I take this opportunity to really thank them for their work which is a tremendous help to new builders. For the RV-10 : Brian Chesteen (Brantel), Jason Ellis (video blog), Adam Bezancon (adamsrv10), Mark Ciaglia (marksfamilyrv10), Charlie (N688CD), Mike (rvten.com), Richard Williams (mouser) and many others.

Thanks a lot also to Doug Reeves for running this forum and to the contributors! [ed. You're very welcome Sir! v/r,dr]

Yannick Bovier


From E-MAG


Dear E-MAG Fans:

We want to give our VAF friends a quick heads-up that revised E-MAG pricing will be in place by the middle of March, 2019. We’ve been able to hold prices stable since the fall of 2013 - over five years. Unfortunately, the cost of manufacturing has not been as considerate. All Series 114 four cylinder products will be affected. Prices for Series 200T, our new six cylinder model, will remain unchanged for now. If you are considering a purchase in the near future, you might want to call before the increase hits (817 444 5310). We can defer delivery/payment for up to 60 days, if that helps your budget planning.

We’d also like to express our appreciation to everyone in the Experimental community, and the VAF crowd in particular, for your continued encouragement and support.

Kindest Regards,
The E-MAG Team


Bunch of 90* Bends ...kentlik 7A status report

Start of fuel mockup on the bench. Kitchen remodel bench.  I looked at the standard Vans valve and it had 90° bends.

Now I worked for a time in fluids and controls at an engineering firm dealing with prototypes and we avoided 90° bends like the plague in pneumatic systems. Low pressure systems, 50-250psi. I am going to have to do some semi-scientific empirical testing on this to satisfy myself this is GTG as I don't have four different types of engineers to get free information from hahaha!
Good news is I can read!


Thanks to Rick Brennan! ...David Paule RV-3B

Since then, progress has been made: the tapered pin is within 1/8”, which is about the axial equivalent, roughly, to the .004" diameter needed of being ready for assembly. The final eighth inch, though, needed another #3 reamer.

Once we got back together again, we followed this process. I’m starting at the beginning of the recovery here rather than the final 1/8”.

1. Secure the assembly on the mill.

2. Drill through the joint with the smallest drill that's close to the final size for the small end of the tapered pin.

3. Step drill the hole so that the drills don't exceed the taper wall sides, but going as far as possible short of that.

4. For the final reaming with a tapered reamer, put the reamer in a Tee handle.

5. Make a mandrel such that you can use a milling machine for pressure, pushing down on the reamer.

6. Press down on the reamer with the mill while a second person rotates the reamer by hand. For here on out, the mill is turned off. Use plenty of cutting oil. There is plenty of axial force on the reamer, and plenty of necessary torque on the Tee handle. Use work gloves. Only turn it in the cutting direction, even when pulling it out for a look.

7. Check often. But it goes slowly enough that if you do that, you won't exceed the tolerance. When checking, don't neglect to deburr the exit of the tapered hole. That burr hinders the assessment of the progress you're making.

And the bottom line is that this side is done, finally, after a LONG time of being unworkable. Thank you, Rick!



At my home field....

.....2019 assessments were mailed 2/27.  Check those mailboxes fellow property owners, and hope you're enjoying your new runway, drainage, signs and more! <g>.



February 27, 2019.  Issue #4,769

Whirlwind factory tour ...Steve Melton

I met Jim Rust at Whirlwind Propeller (KSEE) for a factory tour and he showed me his latest product in development, a new three blade constant speed, and said I could post a few pictures. Note how thin the blade is, that's good for performance. It seems they have invested in technology with a 5 axis mill that produces the hub in one setup for precision parts. My Whirlwind 200RV prop has performed flawlessly for 750 hrs and looks good. ...


Prices of 8's...506DC chimes in with his RV-4 build experience

"Building an airplane is not for the faint of heart. I raised four kids and owned a CPA firm so it took me ten years to build my RV-4 and I wanted to quit several times during the process. In those days we did not have the internet so I traveled about 100 miles to get help, take pictures and ask questions. Because of my work and family, the most of the work was done during the last 5 months of the year.

Should you buy or build. Today Vans kits are eons more user friendly and building resources are unlimited. First you have to look at your financial resources. When I built my kit, I spent about 3K per year. With a used motor, I finished the kit for about 30K. I wished that I had purchased a new motor but motors were expensive and since then, I installed a new motor and CS prop. Today it’s going to cost you somewhere around 100K to build an RV-8 if you have someone paint it for you and you purchase a new motor and a CS prop. You will have to get it registered, inspected and pay sales tax if you live in a sales tax state so that’s another 8-10K and that’s a lot of bread. There is some ways to avoid sales taxes but that can be a dicey situation. Buying a used airplane may be the best way to go depending on if you can get a good one with all the things you want. Unfortunately, avionics are expensive and sellers for good reason are not willing to take a discount in sales price for having a nice panel so the sales price is adjusted accordingly. If you can find a good used RV-8 for 60K that is finished and painted, buy it now!

Would I personally buy or build it today? In no way do I regret that I built an airplane. My wife tells me that I can fix anything. I am not sure if that is true but after building an airplane, I look at every project differently. I am the IA for my RV and I work on the certified planes that I have owned and just about no maintenance operation I will not attempt with the proper tools and maintenance guide. I have kept all my aircraft tools and I use them for repairing aircraft both experimental and certified. I have used my tools to repair and build stuff around the house also. Using my skills for all of my projects both aircraft and domestic has saved me thousands of dollars. Numerous times I do things today that I would not even attempt before I built an airplane. I always owned at least one airplane and when I had just finished my RV-4; I was also flying a 1969 V35A Bonanza. I flew to Stockton, CA for a business meeting and during the flight one of the magnetos broke apart and dumped the impulse coupling parts through the accessory case and into the oil pan. On run-up, my mag did not check so I taxied to a maintenance facility. The owner quoted me about 5k to remove, disassemble and replace the motor and that was a lot of money in 1998. You could have painted a Bonanza for less than 5K in 1998. He offered to let me use his facility if I had an A&P. After I told him that I just completed a homebuilt, he let me do the work myself. I showed up with my tools in a trailer and yanked that engine out, took off the accessory case, removed the oil pan, cleaned, inspected, reassembled and took the opportunity to replace a low compression cylinder in the process. He inspected the airplane and signed off the paperwork and charged me $500 for assistance with craning the removal and installation and use of his facility. I did everything else. I would never have attempted or given the opportunity to do this project without a guy named Richard VanGrunsven. A friend of mine owned a Baron. He had an elevator trim tab replaced during an annual inspection. They charged him 10K to replace the hinge. I did not have the heart to tell him that I could have done it for 25 bucks. When you build a RV-8, you’re not only getting an airplane, you are getting a degree in aircraft construction of some level depending on the completeness of the kit.

I am currently looking at STOL aircraft like a Kitfox. Everybody needs three airplanes, right. My RV cruises at 180 knots so I have the cross-country thing nailed. I also have a Cessna 170B. I use it for giving taildragger endorsements and my wife won’t let me sell it because it has four seats and we can take friends for $100 hamburgers. She told me, “If you sell the Cessna, you better have one in the hangar to replace it” You have got to love that type of woman! Should I purchase an STOL or build? I have never covered an airplane with fabric, how difficult could that be?……Hmmmm."


West Coast Formation Clinic

Less than a week out.  Get those apps in.


11th Annual Ice Cream Social at Inyokern, CA on March 9th

Less than 2 weeks out.  A picture of ice cream to motivate you to attend.


RV10-Top Cowling Cracks-Nose-Help

have cracks on the upper half of the engine cowling of a RV10.
They start from the in front of the three screws and the first screw hole then go up around half of the curve of the nose on both sides.

I took it off this weekend and put two lawyers of fiberglass on the back side, even around the curved portion. Flew it 4 hours not sure its stopped cracking further?? I ve started taking pictures after each flight.

Ive owned it for the last two years and flown it almost 200 hours. Its a 2010 that was flown 200 in its first 6 years. Notice small cracking a year ago but only seemed like surface cracks. The prop has been dynamically balance and my last Savvy report says no miss firing.

Any Suggest would be great!

Jim Folck


Mr. X - Winter Park, CO


AviationNation student builder receives President's Scholarship

Yesterday Thomas Schuler (JCHS Student Project Manager and new Private Pilot) received word that he is one of 20 students state-wide to receive a Presidential Scholarship from Indiana State University. It is of course in Aviation. Thomas had his sights set on becoming a doctor, but after building an RV-12, changed his mind. Thomas has been a joy to work with, and is an excellent pilot.

We ask God's blessing on his decision, his time at Indiana State, and his future. We also want to thank those who make these programs possible, through their volunteer efforts, or their support.

Bob Kelly, Scipio, Indiana
Tech Counselor
Founder, Eagle's Nest Projects
President, AviationNation, Inc
RV-9A N908BL, Flying



.5 Tuesday driving the RV around the patch VFR in Heading Mode, capturing the approach to both KDTO (ILS 18) and KAFW (RNAV 16L).  Just outside LVLEE at KAFW tower had me sidestep over to 16R, so A/P off.  This for a C-130 on a three mile final for 16L - at missed they had me turn out west, then north, then slide around the back side of the C-130 after it passed by.  At first I was bummed that I didn't get to monitor the A/P all the way down to mins, but getting to look down on that C-130 all dirtied up on short final was something folks don't do everyday.

Boring screengrabs, both can be enlarged by clicking on them.


How often do you remove your prop to clean sludge in the hollow cranck-

Q:  Last time I removed my prop for nose seal replacement i was shocked by the amount of sludge I found. What is the recommended interval for cleaning the crank? thanks

A: (Steve Smith) I seem to recall a recommendation of 500 hrs somewhere in Lycoming literatature, but I can't remember where. I could be imagining it.

I didn't know anything about the sludge at 300 hrs when my prop came off to re-seal it. OMG, I thought. So I read up on it, and I think that is where I came across it.

One of the thoughts I had was, YUK! If there is sludge here, what about elsewhere? I think the unique thing about the crank is the high centrifugal load that probably slings the sludge out rather than keeping it in suspension.

My other thought was, "this is engine oil. The only exposure to lead would be from blow-by during combustion. How is there so much?"

Back in the days of leaded fuel for cars, I used to find similar grey sludge deposited in various parts of the engine. Getting rid of this will be a nice side-benefit when they eliminate lead from our avgas.



February 26, 2019.  Issue #4,768
  A pic from the past (no paint).  I had forgotten the little smiley face I drew on the canopy release knob to remind me to 'have a nice day'.  I need to draw that on again (old one wore off).  Wait, that knob is red now.  Did I do that or did somebody else?  Who can even remember at this point?

  Hadn't seen a pic of our RV's panel #1 in a decade or so - probably in Phase 1 (no A/H or D/G, just covers).  I forget what that red light was for - probably boost pump ON.  I think I still have that Chapstick with velcro around it somewhere in a drawer.
  Man, where does the time go?


Mixture seems to adjust itself in flight

Hi all,

I have been experiencing some mixture issues in flight and I could use some help thinking about the problem. I believe the issue has been present for the last ~100 flight hours, but yesterday developed from curiosity to concern.

After leveling off at 2000' (for a short local brunch run), I leaned my IO-375. My typical procedure is to pull power to 62%, then lean for 60%, which gives me LOP burn of ~7.8 gph. After a few minutes I heard the RPMs drop and found that my fuel burn had dropped to 7gph and power was low. I enriched the mixture and continued the flight. A few minutes later I looked down and found that my burn was up over 10gph. Again I adjusted and continued the flight.

On the way home I experienced the same issues, but with wider and more frequent swings in consumption and power. I bee-lined for home and pushed mixture to full rich, thinking that the last thing I wanted was for my engine to lean out in flight. Full rich was burning >20gph! For reference, I burn ~15gph on take off. I started to worry that I was going to fowl the plugs, but by this point I had the runway made, so I left mixture at full rich and landed.

What could be going on here?? Maybe the mixture cable is slipping in its housing? Possibly an issue with the fuel injection?


Dan Ainge
RV-7A N375M


Alaska:Kenai to Knik Glacier Flight 2-24-2019 ...mbauer

Yesterday, was incredibly beautiful. Sunny, blue skies and had to look for clouds. Decided to take a little flight before my condition/annual inspection.

Took lots of photos, and wouldn't you know it; camera settings were all messed up. Photos didn't turn out at all. Today was cloudy in spots, decided to fly a shorter route and get some photos anyway.

Warning, this thread will have photos, more photos and lots more photos of what it looks like to fly from Kenai to Knik Glacier. The route I chose was about as safe as it could be. Tried to follow roads, known places where people snow machine, along the Alaska Rail Road system, and finally passes where help might be available. Once you see the mountains I was flying over you'll understand.

I used to fly Huey helicopters for the Alaska Army National Guard in the mid 1980's. Flew these routes several times.

The following photos will show different views of the same locations, going to and returning from. A few photos will be called Location Photos. Took a photo of my Garmin Aera 660 to show what /where at when taking some of them.

2300 RPM and 11,500 ft altitude! At turn around point climbed to 12,500 until starting my descent for Kenai.


Extremely low oil consumption on new engine

So I now have 5 hours on my rebuilt IO-540. This follows an hour on Barretts test cell going through various power settings. So guess that means there's 6 hours on the engine.

For break-in I have been following the Lycoming's Service Instruction. 95% of the 5 hours was spent at 3,500 - 4,500ft with power settings between 65% and 75%.

After initial service I had about 9.5 quarts in it. After an hour of operations I had about 9.25 quarts in it so I put another quart in. After another 2 hours it was about 9.25 again. Seeing that the oil I put in was now relocated on the belly of the aircraft I left it at 9.25. After another few hours it's still at 9.25. So either it's not burning any oil or the amount is so minuscule that I can't notice it on the dip stick.

Per the Service Instruction "For correct piston ring seating, in a top overhauled engine or a newly overhauled engine, operate the aircraft at 65% to 75% cruise power until oil consumption is stable." Can an engine break-in as little as 5 hours or is it typical not to consume oil during the break-in process?
RV-10, N10JW


FAA Safety Team | Safer Skies Through Education

(upcoming webinar)
"Weather Risk Assessment-Weather Briefings 3"
Topic: Gain confidence in know if any of the six hazards have a reasonable risk of affecting your flight.
On Monday, March 11, 2019 at 16:00 Pacific Daylight Time (17:00 MDT, 18:00 CDT, 19:00 EDT, 13:00 HST, 15:00 AKDT, 16:00 Arizona, 23:00 GMT)

In this 90 minute webinar (plus Q&A) Delia will demonstrate her method to clarify and add certainty to often conflicting weather information.

• Learn the top tools to identify each of the six hazards

• The tool most pilots rely on—that is actually the LEAST reliable tool (and what to use instead)

• How to identify “invisible” hazards.

• Recognizing LLWS even when it's not forecast.

This is our level 3 class for more experienced pilots, however, it can also benefit low time pilots.



February 25, 2019.  Issue #4,767
  Fast weekend.  Friday I worked a side job, Saturday a drive down to Waco and back for a funeral (unsafe crazy windy here), and Sunday Mass, yard and VAF duties.  Wx here Sunday was PERFECT, and when I looked on the FlightRadar24 app on my phone during a yard work break, I think I saw every ADS-B OUT-equipped RV at my field in the air rubbing it in.
  Rub it in, but my yard looks goooooooood (yes you start mowing the yard in February in parts of Texas).  I'd been missing the 'ol zero turn. ;^)
  Hope you had a nice RV-filled weekend.

When the Wife wants to fly, you fly! ...crabandy

My Wife doesn't get the same enjoyment out of flying as I do, she's tagged along probably 25 hours of the almost 400 on my RV. I've tried bribing with various destinations but she'd almost always rather stay home. When she asked me yesterday about flying to see her mom for her mom's Bday I was ON IT like white on snow.

Weather forecast was pretty decent the night before but it is February in Kansas, airplane prepped and plugged in the night before. It wasn't forecast in my vicinity but I was not surprised to see the Fog and low visibility while driving home from the mid-shift, seemed it was freezing fog by the looks of the treetops. We postponed departure 30 minutes to let the sun do it's thing.

After breakfast for me and lil' dude and Wal-Mart for the Wife we met at the airport where the updated TAF was proving the Fog was lifting. 10 miles of hazy visibility at takeoff and a tailwind at 1500' AGL. I'd almost regretted putting in the carseat attach points, almost. I've yet to use them hour for hour as long as they took me to build. 


RV-14A Landing Courchevel Video ...Georges Grenet (France)

related: Departure video


Rest in Peace Mr. Ron Jennings ...Steve Eberhart post

"Ronald V. Jennings, age 85, of Evansville, IN, passed away at 2:00 a.m. on Thursday, February 21, 2019, at Linda E. Hospice House.

Ronald was born December 23, 1933, in Evansville, IN to the late Vernon E. and Madeline (Cobb) Jennings. He graduated from Mechanic Arts High School in 1952 and served in the US Air Force during the Korean Conflict. He worked for Industrial Paint Systems before retiring from Jenco Erectors, Inc. in 1996.

He is survived by his wife, Judith “Judy” Jennings; daughter, Debra “Debbie” Endress (Steve) of Newburgh; sons, Ronald E. Jennings (Yoli) of California, James Marcus Jennings (Lydia) of Evansville, Victor Allen Jennings (Pam) of Evansville, and Andrew B. Jennings (Becky) of Florida; sisters, Joyce Jennings and Eloise Jennings, both of Evansville; 12 grandchildren; 7 great-grandchildren; and 2 great, great-grandchildren.

Memorial Contributions may be made to: Linda E. White Hospice House, 611 Harriet St., Evansville, IN 47710."


EFIS to HUD Project Update ...Brantel

Been working on another screen option for the HUD project. This one mostly modeled after the F18 HUD. It’s not complete yet but is taking shape.


New Build Thread ...gcman6

After reviewing the plans and build manual for a couple months, I jumped right into the empennage kit. I spent a few hours inventorying the kit and everything was present and in great condition. I then started on the rear and front spars.

There are a few tricky spots on the front spar but I was able to get everything cut, bent, and drilled correctly using some tips from other builders. I prepped the ribs and cleco’d the substructure and skins together to see how it all fits. I then got the HS-00005 and HS-00006 ribs lined up, drilled, and cleco’d together and proceeded to match drill all holes in the skins.

Next up is to take everything apart, deburr the edges and all holes, dimple, prime, and get ready to start riveting it all together.


Avionics failure during flight ...Jonathan Alvord

Went for fuel filling trip today and lost all avionics including transponder, EIS, GRT displays. Thankfully had steam gauges for backup. That is the short and sweet. Here comes all the details leading up to it. The plane has roughly 460 hours on it and I am the second owner. Two months ago we replaced the alternator when the displays turn off when coming in to land. No real issues otherwise up until today. Run up normal, flew to Oregon for gas and avionics shut down while on final and rebooted. Filled up, run up good, Voltage 12.9 amps 10 I believe all in the green on the EIS and displays. Half way back in VFR all the avionics turned off, no contact with ATC and I was on flight following, called Flight services on cell to ask them to relay to ATC that I had lost comms and would continue VFR direct to my local airport.

Now why did it fail? It appears the PTT on joystick was pulling power from the avionics, that's my theory. I and two others have looked through the plane most of the day. All the solenoids in the engine compartment appear to working. WE have power at the master switch, we no longer have power to Avionics (GRT, Radio stack) and Fuel pump. I have checked all the fuses and can't find a single one that is bad. We were able to jump the power to the avionics and it still works , just not from the switch. When testing the panel for endurance fuses (fuel pump, manifold pressure, avionics, EIS, and inst lights) we could only get 2.7v, All of the Main fuses were working (nave lights, auto pilot, pitot, strobe, trim ignition, trim switch, landing, pwr source 1, interestingly Power source 2 had no fuse in it).

I am unable to find a wiring diagram, although I know it would help we drew out one and I have a picture but can't post here. I did not pull the floor panels off and have had no problems with the fuel pump in previous 250 hours.

Any ideas? There are no mech or avionic specialist at the airport, this is new territory for me as to how to get it repaired. Any Advice would be greatly appreciated. BTW I am near Yakima/Tri Cities Washington.


Steve Formhals RV-3

Mel inspected it on 2/11 and first flight was on 2/15.  Still working out new plane bugs and tweaking.


Update ...jcarney 7A

Decided to assembly the FlyLEDs kit I received last year, I have been saving it for cold weather. This was one of the funnest parts of the build so far! I don't solder as much as I would like so this was a treat.  Here are the blank boards before trimming the main boards to fit the wingtip. An oscillating orbital sander made this trimming so easy it wasn't even fair.


Panel Pics / Interior ...Bavafa


Do I cut the countersink cage to fit? ...kjowen

I am working on -8 empanage / elevator. I am to the point of countersinking the spar in 4x to attach the E-709 rib. Call out requires countersinking as elevator horn fits over spar and must sit flush. The two inside holes - easy. What's up with the outside / upper and lower holes? Do I take a cut off wheel to my micro countersink cage?


Status Report ...kentlik 7A

Got back to the fuel lines, need a return so I spent a lot of time researching the best way to do it. At least I think it is currently.


Mothership News...

The TeenFlight Puyallup crew (40+ kids were there representing their program today!) with their almost competed #4 RV-12 today at the Northwest Aviation Conference and Tradeshow.



February 22, 2019.  Issue #4,766
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!

Usual Suspects Formation Practice 52F

From the Mothership...

Van’s own Sterling Langrell speaks to a group of Civil Air Patrol cadets and leaders during a tour of the Van’s Aircraft factory on Tuesday evening. It was a large crowd of motivated and interested youth! We conduct tours for the public twice daily at the factory on weekdays, at 9:30 am and 1:30 pm. Or, let us know if your group is interested in coming out to learn about building RVs!


You're Not The Only One

(who cracked a part getting in/out with some parts off).

(RE: F-01447)
Ughh, I made this mistake too when getting in and out of the airplane without the cover plates screwed in. It really bothered me but I came up with a fix that leaves it stronger than it ever would have been without adding much weight. The rudder cables are right there so I believe having a brace makes sense for an obviously vulnerable part.

I had a very small crack forming. I stop drilled it using a #61.

I drilled out the nut plate and then fabricated a .025 backer piece. I used a 3/8 drill bit to radius the turns and cut the piece on my bandsaw. I bent the flanges on the backer plate using a handseamer and then clecoed it in place a little bit oversized. The backer piece is tied into the floor, the front of the floor and the bulkhead with lp4-3 rivets. Everything was match drilled and the nutplate holes dimpled. Trimmed the backer plate to size around the match drilled holes and clearing the hole for the rudder cable. Re-riveted the nutplate behind the backer piece and set the pop rivets. Once it was all done I put a dab of jb weld on that I will file later so the crack is not visible after paint. Anyways it really bothers me but will be hidden by the cover plate anyways and at least I don't have to worry about it cracking any further in the future! I built one for the other side and installed it at the same time.


Control Stick Wiring Issue Resolved ...Keith Rhea

I finally figured it out and tested it seems to work ok. Had to add a 12vDC to the input through a 4.7Kohm resistor.


From Kitplanes Newsline

BRS Whole Aircraft Parachute for Van's RV-10.  $26K


Thanks Vic!

Came in the mail yesterday.  I see on the back he's giving Stein a run for his back-of-shirt joke money ;^).


Mothership First Flight Stats



February 21, 2019.  Issue #4,765

Diagonal Away from Home ...Capt Sandy

We were on the taxiway, waiting clearance to take off.  The flaps were up, the canopy closed. The long, asphalt runway stretched off to either side.  I had my sunglasses and iPad.  Bright October sun warmed the cockpit.  I was happy I’d worn a t-shirt. I was wearing the pink Love at First Flight shirt Roy bought for me at EAA Airventure. It felt appropriate for the first flight of our open ended journey.


Safety Pilot Ballast

A local at our field is going for his instrument and needed a pulse in the other seat.  We have a two day window around here of pretty good weather so sure!   Logged 1.4, 1.3 under the hood.  Hand flown.  Three approaches (KGLE RNAV 18, KLUD RNAV 17, KLUD RNAV 35) and some around-the-area to round the hood time up to 1.3.  All in all not a bad way to spend a little time before lunch - I got to enjoy the sky instead of gauges <g>.  I got some ground tracks so I would have some news for the site, but when I got home there was plenty of news to choose from.  Since I already had 'em, six grabs from the morning starting HERE. (opens new window)  Winds ~20kts from 270 at 3000'.

Seemed like everyone and their cousins were in the air around N. TX Wednesday.  In the teardrop turn at HIRGO (KLUD 35) we had a helicopter two miles behind us with the same plan, and another plane on the RNAV 17 - clear skies, all planes on the scope and everyone talking.  Fly while the Wx permits <g>.  Good time.

KLUD RNAV 17, then turn around and RNAV 35.


Does Anybody Else Do This?

I have a skinny, long funnel that allows me to leave the dip stick in the fill tube.  You have to pull the dipstick out a bit, but you don't need a rag.  Lazy I know...  Don't know where I got this funnel.  Maybe someone left it here. 


Lifter Failure ...RV8iator

I have (had) a Titan DIOX370 on my 8. Great engine and ran trouble free for 5 years/ 950ish hours. Started burning oil like crazy but everything else was right where it should be. Good compression, clean pipes and plugs but dirty oil and using a quart about every 3 hours like a switch was flipped. Found a collapsed breather hose, replace and thought I was good to go and lucky that the crank seal stayed in. Talked to engine shop and thought I had glazed cylinders or just broke a ring or any other myriad of things that can go south in a cylinder, so off to JB's for a top inspection and top overhaul as required.
They pulled a cylinder and found this..  ...

you can see how the lifter is just coming apart and the scored crank in the background. This is lifter part number 7287R and it seems these came from a batch in late 2012ish that may have been produced with improper hardening done.

and this. You can see how the cam lobe is chewed up also.

and this. Another view of the top of the lifter. You can see how clean the inside of the engine was.

It has been five years and 950ish hours since new. I have never gone more than 2 weeks between flying, usually much more frequently than that, changed oil and filters religiously every 50 hours at most, sometimes at closer intervals and used CAM GUARD for the past 3 years since I got out of flying shows very, very regularly.

I'm posting this just as a heads up that if you have an engine from this time frame, really watch those filters at oil changes. Mine went from clean to full of very, very fine black dust that was not visible, but a magnet picked it up after the filter was washed and dried. This happened very fast once the metal started circulating around.

This is not meant to be any kind of negative thread, just a heads up and a reminder to really, really check those filters when changing the oil. There were warning signs to me in the oil consumption and I just happened to have the filter laying in the trash from the change preceding this one and after I washed the mesh and ran a magnet over it I found a little of the ferris metal there. I'm sure going forward I will be much more diligent when inspecting used filters. Absolutely nothing visible, but the old magnet found it. If your engine was produced in this time frame, I would keep an eye out.

New Superior engine is already built and almost ready for installation.


Crack in F-01447 baggage floor - what to do? ...iamtheari RV-14

I'm working on the window. That seems to be going okay, but one step involves marking from the inside where the roll bar brace brackets interfere with the aft edge of the plexiglass so you can trim it to fit. I did that step and it all went well, but I was not 100% happy with the centering of the window, so I did the whole thing over again. In my second attempt, I was kneeling on a stack of towels on the baggage floor and felt something give.

The result is a dent in the F-01447-L baggage floor just behind the hole where the rudder cable passes through and a crack from the inside corner up to a point next to (but as far as I can tell, not intersection) the rivet on the innermost of the K1000-08D nutplates. Pictured below with lots of bright light to make it look as bad as possible. The dent is enough that the F-01440 seat ramp has a slight gap in between that nutplate and the next one outboard, but it's not very bad.

I am worried about the crack. All advice is welcome. Replacing the baggage floor, while technically possible, would be a real headache because it would also require removal of the baggage side walls and rebuilding of the seat bottom hinges, plus about 10,000 LP4-3 rivets, 4,000 nutplates, miscellaneous other work like redoing the baggage tie-downs, and painting the interior on that side all over again. But if replacing it is the right thing to do, it's just a few dollars in parts and a few dozen hours of lost time.

Here's my shame, bare for all to see



February 20, 2019.  Issue #4,764
  Episode #1 of the VAFcast ticked over the 500-download mark overnight (pushed out 12 days ago).  Working on getting the next guest to make a hole in his sched - Smokey Ray....looking your direction w/foot tapping.  Have your people call my people (rimshot). 

First Flight ...j-red

I believe there is a law that states RV videos must be accompanied by music from the Top Gun soundtrack, so I've obliged.

First flight was a thrilling experience! After literally jumping off the ground, the plane flew flawlessly. Left wing was a little heavy, but nothing the trim couldn't handle. Flight was 30 minutes, directly above the field at around 3k', and mostly at 75% power to seat the rings. Winds were a little gusty up high, and it was overcast, but all was calm on the ground. I did two stalls before coming down to confirm the airspeed indicator and returned for a pretty smooth landing.

Couple of squawks included the flap circuit blowing at 20* down every time. With the VP-X, it can be reset, would retract fine, then blow again at about half-flaps. Worked fine on the ground. Turns out, one of the plastic covered spade connectors I used to connect it had pulled out slightly and would contact the flap motor at about that position. Reconnected it and taped over both wires then secured them so they wouldn't move like that again.

The landing light circuit also blew. Turns out it just needed to be set at a higher amperage in the VP-x.

Finally, I landed and found a pretty good oil slick dripping from the lower cowling. After plenty of cleaning and ground running, it became apparent that the oil temperature probe gasket had gotten cocked when it was put on. Gasket was replaced and is holding and dry. There is some oil up front that looks like it might be coming from one of the smaller through bolts that doubles for retaining the hall effect sensor for the CPI ignition. I'm going to try some wicking locktite and see if that helps there.

Aside from those minor little things, she runs great! 75% power resulted in about 165kts true without wheelpants, and the climb is unbelievable. Third flight occurred this morning and with an OAT of about 35 degrees the initial climb rate was about 2500fpm! Ran for 30 minutes at power, then practiced landings at KGED. I'll say this: paved runways are definitely harder to land on than grass!

Thanks to the vans community and to this forum for all the help and support along the way. Keep Building
Rebuilt RV-6A N94CR
RV-8 In Progress Flying


Control stick wiring ...krhea

I am upgrading my control stick to tosten Cs-8 and am confused about the digital input output wiring. I am adding the MGL n16-V16 radio and a CS-8 stick grip. I built a small schematic at this link:

I just cannot wrap my head around the ptt going to audio ground at the radio and the other ptt switchs grounding to power ground. Seems like i need to take the cs-8 apart and add another wire for the ptt trigger?


Keith Rhea.


Ground Shots...Bavafa


Flap Control Bracket ...NorthernRV4

Hey guys

So I made an error when I laid out the rivet spacing for my inboard rib flap rib. Instead of 5@1.00" rivets I laid out 4@1.25" spacing. Unfortunately I didn't realize I had made the error until the everything was drilled so now I'm looking for some advice. Due to the blind access, these rivets must be pull type and the plans call out CS4-4 carbon steel type rivets. I could drill 2-3 extra holes at 5/8" spacing to the current ones or would a stronger rivet like a Cherry Max be a sufficient choice here instead of the CS4-4? The loading is such that the bracket pushes on the inside of the rib flange when extending the flaps so the stress on these rivets is only when the flap is retracted up against the fuselage. More likely the worst stress they would see is if someone accidentally stepped on the flap (had to be the port flap too ) their weight would put these rivets in tension, I cringe at the thought of it though for various reasons.


Electrical Issue - low battery  ...Indwarrior

I have been seeing a repeated problem with my electrical system that I am trying to figure out. Some things to know:
- I built the plane and designed the wiring system based on the Z-11 diagram.
- It has worked well for 300 hours
- engine is an O-235
- 40 amp B&C alternator with 300 hours on it
- B&C LR-3 voltage regulator with about 30 hours on it
- EarthEx ETX680 battery 300 hours as well
- Electronics International Volts/Amps meter set up in a LOAD Meter arrangement with matched EI shunt
- very low amp draw electrical system - about 10 amps with everything turned on (VFR panel, led lights, etc)

I have noticed my battery voltage dropping when it has not been flown in a while.

EarthEx says either I have a parasitic drain going on when the master is off or I have a bad battery.

So far I have not had the time to trouble shoot what might be draining the battery. I do have an Always On bus for LED cabin light, USB port and possibly other item that I cant remember right now.

My normal/average total amp draw in flight is around 7 amps.

Yesterday I checked the battery with a portable amp gauge and it was reading 12.9 amps - below the 13.3 that is typical for this battery.

The engine started just fine and I did a short MX flight directly over the airport. For the 10 minutes I was in the air the amp meter was reading about 25 amps, though this was varying up and down by an amp or two.

I have never seen this high amperage (alternator output) before. I have high and low voltage warning lights and a stuck starter light. None of the warning lights lit up during the flight.

So, is the 25 amps I saw simply just normal? Is this a case of the alternator charging a low battery? Again, the max load from my electrical system is around 10 amps, and everything was not turned on during the flight.

I know I need to check the system for parasitic drain but right now I'm just trying to understand that my charging system is doing.


"Unusual Attitude" ...Brad Benson

One of my favorite pictures of N164BL to date. Need to check six more.



Battery box too narrow ...dbaflyer

Went to install my battery tonight and it would not fit. The left side started to slide in, but the right side would not go. Removed the battery box from FW and measured it. The right side is only 2 and 29/32nds. This is a van's battery box that was already put together. Just needed to rivet on the angle on either side. I see my only alternative to cut the right front corner, widen it to the right size and install a piece of angle on the outside of the box to hold it in place. Anyone else have this issue? Seems odd to me that the part would come undersized.



February 19, 2019.  Issue #4,763

Helping a Friend

52F POA Prez Mitch W. called me at 0945am Monday as I was about to step on the treadmill for an hour after a cuppla hours on the laptop.  "Any chance you can fly me down to Lampasas, TX so I can pick up my plane?"  Sure.  Anything to get out of exercise ;^).  173kts GS down at 4,500'.  170kts GS back 5,500'.  It was 45*F in cruise, and 33*F on the ground.  Preferred the plane <g>.  1.8 logged.  Wx goes to turds Tue here, so get it when you can. ;^)

What an amazing machine, this RV. 


Soft Spot Plenum Lid ...DanH

RV-8 builders know stuffing an angle valve Lycoming into an RV-8 cowl results in very tight engine to cowl clearance above the front cylinder corners, and down the left side. It gets worse with a plenum lid, a classic case of stuffing six pounds of stuff in five pound sack.

My plenum lid has routinely bumped the inside of the upper cowl. If I look close, I can see some fine spiderweb cracks in the cowling clear coat, so if allowed to continue surely it will develop an ugly spot. In recent times it has not been bumping so much, but that was because the mount isolators were sagging. With new isolators, it was time to fix the bumping. ...


Mr. X Photo Dump

Been awhile.  Had several que'd up.  Many new pics as large as your monitor is starting HERE.  Enjoy!

Mr. X Pic Folder


RV-3B Status Report ...David Paule

The RV-3B has a depression in the seat pan to accommodate a large pilot, which I’m not. Typically, the builder adds foam to fill the shape. I’ve heard that some of the seat cushions get pretty heavy.

So I’m making a wee change in the seat structure. This picture shows both the existing ribs and one of the added webs. The fuselage is on it’s side here, in case you’re wondering why the photo is odd.  ...


Update on the RV-4 40yr Anniversary ...Greg@Mothership

Sounds like we have pretty good interest - I will send out some more info as soon as we have it. Anyone interested, feel free to keep commenting here and we can form a list.

Anyone willing to help coordinate, please let me know!


Update on Lord Motor Mount Thingy ...DanH

"...The answer seems to be ....both.

With the VIP acro mounts, the airframe shake below 2400 felt like an out of balance prop. Vic had done a dynamic balance not long ago, before I discovered dripping silicone, and realized how far gone my Lord mounts really were. With new VIP acro mounts installed, we were both curious about how failed Lord mounts might affect the dynamic balance process. If one or more gel bags and center spacers were against the inner steel ring, would it skew the dynamic balance results?

Answer...apparently yes. I flew over to Fresh Fried Chicken where Vic and I repeated the balance done just a few months ago. Getting down to 0.01 required the removal of a #10 screw, washer, and compact nut installed when we balanced with bad mounts. IPS immediately dropped below 0.4 (or maybe it was 0.03). A washer or two in the right place dropped it to 0.01. The lesson, now learned, is obvious; check your mounts before balance.

However, when flying home, there was no significant difference in cockpit feel. Pulling the prop to down to around 2300 would still make my sunglasses dance. Ok, fine. If it ain't balance, it must be resonance.

As previously noted, the VIP acro mounts are simply two thin isolators and a slightly different internal bushing length. I called VIP, and they were willing to sell me the thick isolators and the correct bushings, since I already had plenty of thin isolators. The resulting thick-thin set is exactly what you would get from Vans or Aircraft Spruce. Blocked out the day Saturday and got 'em in there.

Drum roll please; a short test flight yesterday confirmed the return of good vibes. It's been a long time since I had new Lord mounts, so a direct comparison is hard to judge. There is no objectionable behavior with the VIP mounts; I can pull RPM down with fairly high MP and the previous large amplitude shake is gone. I did notice one difference between the VIP and Lord mounts. With the Lords, I recall pulling 3G would cause a noticeable change in engine sound and feel. There does not seem to be any change with the VIP mounts. I assume G would push the Lord gel bags into contact with the rings. I do not know how long ago I noticed the sound change with G; could be after they had sagged a little.

I'll fly the new isolators a while and eyeball them for sag. Given this is a return to the "one size fits all" isolator set, I'm interested to see if the large engine actually does shorten isolator life. Seems logical that a 320 would not load the isolators as much as a 390. ..."  ...


RV-7A Status Report ...jcarney

Slow going the past couple of weeks but still making progress. Finished up the pushtubes just in time for a bunch of family visits to see the new little one. I also started working on the FlyLEDs kit, pics coming soon.


Bald Mountain Camp 2019 Fly In Pics ...kevinsrv7.com


Garmin® celebrates a GPS milestone in aviation

OLATHE, Kan.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Garmin International, Inc., a unit of Garmin Ltd. (NASDAQ: GRMN), today commemorates the 25th anniversary of the GPS 155 TSO – the aviation industry’s first FAA TSO-C129 approach approved IFR GPS receiver. The GPS 155 TSO set the standard for product development within avionics, laid the groundwork for future innovations in GPS navigation, and raised the bar for technological GPS advancements in the aviation industry.  ...

"...For the first time, pilots could fly in instrument meteorological conditions (IMC) throughout the departure, enroute, and approach phases of flight using GPS as their primary navigation source..."


Alternator pulley suddenly rubbing against bottom cowl


This morning during the preflight I discovered a little crack in the bottom cowl of my RV8. Furher inspection revealed that the alternator pulley touched the inside of the cowl and rubbed through it.

I have been flying for app. 70 hours since a prop overhaul and haven't noticed this issue before.

But last week I had the cowls off, did a oil change and put them back on, so I assume that putting the cowl back on was the moment from wich the pulley started to touch. I didn't touch or change anything else.

I'll repair the little crack with a bit of glass and a drip of touch-up paint on the outside.

But does anyone know what I might have done wrong when replacing to cowl or what else might I have to look at? If it happened immediately after replacing the alternator or work on the prop or then that might be the cause. But I didn't touch those.




RV-14 VFR day/night panel, feedback please



February 18, 2019.  Issue #4,762

Rob Ray in his RV-4 'Bandit' 12/17/03, the
100th anniversary of the Wright Bros. first flight. 
dr photo from back of Danny King's 'Beautiful Doll'.

OSH Event: 40 Years of the RV-4 at AirVenture! ...Greg @ mothership

Heading to OSH this year in your RV-4? On the fence? Need some fresh motivation to finish that 18-year-old project? Well - maybe this will push you over to the "I'm going" side!

The RV-4 is officially 40 years old in 2019, and we've be in discussions recently with EAA because they'd like to work with us -- and all of you -- to see if we can have a special RV-4 parking area and do some other stuff to celebrate the RV-4! We'll update here as we nail down details, but in order to get started we need to line up some helpers!

We're in talk to try to arrange RV-4 participation in a "homebuilt review" style fly-by, and some other possibilities. EAA has said they'll help arrange a meeting place for a get-together if we like.

Ultimately, we are looking to the RV-4 community to see what you'd like to do! These things can't happen without community involvement to help drive it, to be sure. So -- If you're interested in participating or helping coordinate some part of this, let me know!

From the mothership, our working plan right now is that Van will present a forum covering the history of the RV-4, where it came from and the role it played in propelling Van's Aircraft in its early days.

Should be a lot of fun!


Bald Mountain Camp 2019 Fly In ...Vlad

They had THREE runways this year. Two plowed ice and one packed snow. There was a Burning Man like circle in the middle. Cool view from the above. ...


Iowegian Lunch ...petehowell 9A

Kate called, she had a birthday present for the old man. Maybe it would be a good day to warm up the oil on the old RV......Maybe lunch could be involved.....

What the heck, twist my arm. Do it for the Kid! High ceilings and cold, but not "stupid cold" said we can do this......

Bernie and I were wheels up at 10:30. He escorted me to the border, then headed home. The blue skies and sun were very inviting. I was fascinated by the drift patterns on on the farm fields from the prevailing winds as we flew south. 


Airworthiness 2/15/19 ...j-red

Happy Valentines Day to Me!
Don Scarfone from up in Bear, DE drove down to perform the airworthiness inspection. The plane has been ready to go for about 3 weeks now, save for some last minute items that have been hanging onto the bottom of the "to do" list for what seems like forever. All were minor things, like painting the glareshield flat black, sticking on necessary placards, making sure the jamb nuts on the elevator hinges were tight , etc. Fortunately we've had a string of warm days recently, and so a sunny 75 degree day a couple of weeks ago presented the perfect opportunity to get these knocked off the list.

The inspection went just about like the one he performed on my Zenith four years ago. Didn't check every nut and bolt, but seemed to know what he was looking for and went right to those areas.

Most importantly, he stood still and smiled for the obligatory "handshake" picture


EFIS to HUD Project Update ...Brantel

So a few of us geeks have been quietly working on a project that takes input from an EFIS (currently serial streams) and processes that data within a Raspberry Pi and generates an image that can be used on a HUD or other display that supports HDMI or CVBS (Composite) video inputs. (Think back seat display for tandem aircraft)

The project is being built with the ability to add different input modules and to make it relatively easy to add customized displays to the available options.

Currently the serial input modules that have been developed include:

Legacy Dynon

Capabilities for each of these input modules vary due to the fact that the different manufacturer's serial streams also vary greatly in the variables being streamed.

As would be expected, I have been working on the G3X input module and have developed the following custom display based on the data that is provided in the G3X serial stream. Several additional variables have been created by developing algorithms that use provided data to calculate those that are not present in the data stream.

Here is a static image of the custom screen as it exist today: 


Some pretty awesome news over the weekend ...proud Dad

Our daughter Audrey, whose undergrad education a lot of you helped make happen with VAF yearly donations, took and passed her 'quals' this past Friday at grad school.  To hear her say, it's the biggest hurdle towards getting her PhD.  She sent me the (60) slides she was presenting to the 4-person committee.  I didn't understand the title, but I did recognize her name and the date. ;^)

They liked her research, where she's going with it, and told her to keep on keep'n on.  That's her in the blue shirt.

fmi: Audrey's citations / bio


Homemade jack pad


Inspired by the cool jackpads from Winter, I made my own out of 1" X 1 1/4" 6061 T6. I did the whole deed with out much more than a drill press, carbide burr, and a miter saw. The mounting holes are 15/16" OC and I used AN4-21A bolts. I had to make one spacer at about 17/64". The AN4-31A bolt only has about a half inch of threads so I reamed the hole halfway and tapped the rest. That way the shank of the bolt is in shear. I made a sleeve out of 3/8" OD 4130 reamed 1/4" ID to take advantage of more bending resistance and so I could torque the bolt into place for jacking. The pad weighs less than 2 oz. and fits under the wheel pant with the jack bolt removed. I bought an aluminum Porsche jack on Ebay which weighs less than 3 lb. I'm gonna throw that in a bag for the baggage compartment on cross countries. With a spare tube and a CO2 inflator, I'm ready for tire trouble.

Ed Holyoke


Odd Brake Failure ...Tim-NJ

After some routine maintenance which did not include anything at all with the brakes (I did an oil change), I uneventfully taxied out to the runway for a short test flight. Winds were something around 12G18 and coming from a direction that favored the far end of the runway when coming from my hangar. The taxing was uneventful. I line up and go full throttle when I do notice some unusual squirreliness staying on the centerline that I dismissed as xwind.

I flew for a half hour and landed only to find out my right brake was completely out. Lucky for me the runway was 3500ft and a the last third is uphill, 2nd stroke of luck the FBO was a left turn I got a tow back to my hangar and found this! I'm wondering if I picked up some FOD on the taxiway or runway?



Test Data!!!- Anatomy of a fuel pump, part 3- ...Hartstoc

Now that we are getting comfortable flying “electron-dependent” aircraft and have powerful, lightweight lithium batteries at our disposal, I’ve been thinking it is time to find a way to SAFELY eliminate one of the last vestiges of the magneto era- the engine driven mechanical fuel pump. There are a lot of really good reasons for doing this that I won’t go into here, but the challenge in making it possible is to find a reliable electric fuel pump properly matched to the task. This thread documents my successful search supported by real data, and I’ve generated accurate performance charts under real-world conditions for three pumps.

Thousands of airplanes already sport electric boost pumps that seem to work well, but on close examination few of them make any sense at all in this context.Two problems with most pumps currently in use is that they generate flow and consume power FAR IN EXCESS of our needs, and many feature continuous short-loop recirculation of the vast majority of their output back to the pump inlet. This is no big deal for backup pumps used intermittently, but wholly ill-suited to continuous operation in a twin-pump setup with no engine driven pump. Some are also quite heavy, bad news with two installed. For continuous operation, return lines to the tank in use become mandatory, and the pump must operate efficiently to minimize electrical demand in normal operation and maximize range on battery power should the alternator fail.

A plethora of choices exist in the 500-1,000 HP range for auto racing applications, but precious few really make sense in the context of typical RV’s. Also, I’ve discovered that published performance data for pumps is often not detailed, accurate, and reliable enough to allow intelligent selection, and these do not take into account system-wide resistance that must be subtracted from the performance of the unrestricted pump.

I decided to build this test rig, shown here collecting data for one of the Walbro pumps. It incorporates pre- and post-pump filters and enough lift, bends, turns, and manifold reversals to roughly mimic the aft-of-firewall dynamic flow restrictions of a typical RV installation. Here, the return line is closed off, and “engine” output, dialed-in at 30PSI resistance, is being shunted to the flow-measuring vessel.  ...


Latest Build Video ...Sean A.


Updates to RV-12/RV-12iS publications and plans - Feb 14 2019 (mothership)

RV-12 folks,

As happens from time to time, we published a few documentation updates for RV-12 and RV-12iS builders/owners today.

You can find the updated documents in the Support > Service Information and Revisions section of the Van's website. All of the changes published today fall in the "Revisions and Changes" publication category. You can also sign up to receive periodic notifications of changes we publish via the signup box on the home page of the Van's Aircraft website.

The following documents were updated for both the "legacy" RV-12 and the RV-12iS.
•Pilot's Operating Handbook
•Flight Training Supplement
•Production Acceptance Procedures
•Maintenance Manual

In addition, the following documents/plans pages have been updated specifically for the RV-12iS:
•Section 28iS/U and Section 35iS/U - reflects changes to parts and procedures related to new, improved gun-drilled gear legs
•Section 51AiS/U - Placards and Certification Documents
•Section 03iS/U - reflects an addition to the builder's supplies list
•Section 01iS/U - minor changes plus DWG 1 and DWG 2 (the three-view and cut-away view drawings) have been published

The following section has been published and is specific to the "legacy" RV-12:
•Section 35 - reflects changes to parts and procedures related to new, improved gun-drilled gear legs

Note: The RV-12 gun-drilled gear legs are a revised part, which integrates brake plumbing and removed the need to run a tube on the outside of the gear leg. This is now the standard shipping part for all RV-12/12iS aircraft. In the event one needs to replace a set of original main gear in the future, different attachment hardware will be used and Van's will have a kit available for doing so. Other than the integral brake line, there is no difference between the original and new parts.



February 15, 2019.  Issue #4,761
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.

RV-12 Crosswinds Update...Ron Gawer

I wanted to share my experience early this morning as I’ve gotten more and more XW experience in my RV12.

Today I was able to explore what I think are the upper boundaries of XW’s in my 12. I had 160@41 KT, which presented about 35KT HW and 20.5KT XW in the pouring rain this morning. Aside from being crabbed about 15º to the right and just over 30KT ground speed, it was pretty much a non-event. I find that the rudder has plenty of authority to crab down to the runway and then kick the nose around into alignment and set the upwind gear onto the runway. I then let the left gear down to the runway, set the nose down and then pretty much came to a stop after that without any brakes. I had to power up to get to the turnoff and then had to use power and brakes to finagle my way to the tie-down.

My fellow commuter was laughing and joked that it seemed like an “austin powers” getaway scene taking so long to get to the runway.

All in all, I’d say that’s about on verge of a limit for the airplane. I think it could handle a couple more knots XW for the landing, but taxiing sucked.

Afterward, I noted that the rain did an excellent job shining up the aluminum.

Separately, there was windshear at 2000’ indicated at 55KT; coming down through that was, shall we say, “bumpy”. 90KIAS worked well, and the stick and rudders got a great work out too. The TAF for tomorrow is a little better with less rain, should be another fun ride.


Show Us Your Day Job ...James in Redwood City

[ed. You're gonna want to click on this <g>.  v/r,dr]


First Flight(s) done! ...AviatorJ RV-10

Successfully completed Flights #1 & #2 in N10JW today! I defined success as flying the plane and nothing leaking or falling off!

I did two shortish flights. This first was about 25 mins in the air doing about a 5 mile box around the airport. The second was a quick 15 minute flight around the pattern once. I did these as 'shake down flights' with my only concern being checking for leaks and validating the wings weren't going to fall off.

Really the only issue of concern was my oil temp. On the first flight as soon as it pushed over 220 I decided to land and it was 243 when I landed. After a hour of engine cool down the 2nd flight it rose to 220 fairly quick so that's why I only did one lap around the pattern. I talked to Barretts and they gave me some places to start troubleshooting. Hope to do another flight next week!


Video of our Winter Flight to Key West via Lakeland from MS  ...Paul & Beth Duff RV-9A


Formation Clinic Apr 5-7

Falcon Flight Formation Team will be hosting a formation training clinic April 5th -7th 2019. The clinic will be held at KGYI (North Texas Regional/Perrin Field) in Dennison, Texas. To register follow the link and you will be asked to join the group. There you will find all the info to register for the clinic,


This clinic is for RV newcomers as well as experienced formation pilots that want to brush up on their skills.

Also for those that can not attend this clinic or any of the clinics around the country here is the website so you can maintain and train to the FFI standards.


We hope to see many of you at the Formation Clinic!

Falcon Flight Formation Team


Flight Levels Club ...BruceEicher

It was so cold my fingers and brain missed the altimeter adjustment by .01. Hope this and the dirty screen is forgiven.
Flying home from Arizona last weekend.
I should have also turned into the wind, slowed to approach speed and flew backwards, but I was too cold so I pushed on and around the weather. You can see my deviation from the flight plan to avoid further weather.


Van's web orders placed Feb 13th - Please check for confirmation email

(Greg at the Mothership)
VAF community,

We've had a couple of limited "growing pain" moments with our web store since we launched the new site. The good thing is we will be replacing the online store later this year with a new, much more modern platform. The tough part is there are some orders placed on Wednesday (Feb 13) that may not have been completed due to an error that was not obvious to the person placing the order.

If you placed a Van’s Aircraft web store order on Wednesday, February 13th 2019 between 4:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Pacific time, we ask that you please check your email to determine whether or not you received a confirmation of your order. If you placed an order between those times but did not receive a confirmation email, please either call our office and speak with the Order Team, or you can simply resubmit your order online. Confirmation emails can sometimes take 15 minutes or longer to arrive.

What happened: Due to a system processing issue, some orders submitted during that time frame could not be completed. An error message was displayed to the person placing the order, but that error message was not explicit in stating the error, and some customers may not have recognized that there was an error with their order.

The issue has since been rectified and testing performed, and web orders being placed now are being processed as expected. If you placed an order outside the hours listed above, or if you received a confirmation email for your order, there is no need for you to take action.

Thank you, and please accept our apologies for any inconvenience.


Seen over DFW Thursday 0600

62kt winds from 230 at 3000'.  Pretty unusual.  Could have joined the 230kt GS club if I was crazy enough to fly to Sherman for gas <grin>.





February 14, 2019.  Issue #4,760

Seen at Monk's

Neat custom center console on RV-6.  Added to the 'Show us your RV-6 panel' thread.  See 'um...


Houston area monthly lunch (February 2019) ...Philip

It's that time again! Let's hit up Weiser for some BBQ this time around. 11:30 this Saturday, 2-16, at Carl's BBQ in Cypress.  I probably won't be able to make it this time though. Next time...


Skyview Checklist Maker ...Dgamble RV-12

I wasn't satisfied with Dynon's method for creating custom checklists so I started working on an alternative. It's pretty far along and I have created a nice RV-12 checklist with it, but I'm not sure what to do with it now, if anything. Here are some screen shots to give you an idea as to where I was headed with it

It has not been tested beyond my own PC, but I do have a self-installer that should work on any Windows machine. I really have no idea what to do with it at this point. Sell it, give it away, just forget about it - it seems a waste to only use it for my own checklist, but I'm reluctant to get pulled back into professional IT, by which I mean that I'm not sure I want to be forever on the hook for maintenance and enhancements.

As such, I would like to have a handful of people try it out, see how it works, and give me an idea as to how much more development it will need before being useful for a broader audience. Before doing that, though, I thought it might be a good idea to get some feedback on what I have done already.

Thoughts?  continue


RV-10 Status Report ...Tim Foster RV-10

"...I got the RV-10 kit tool package and looks like a bit of everything.

Also working with Brandon on the tail kit a couple hours at a time. Now I know why everyone talks about how much fun deburring is. The tail kit is coming together, fun to see it take shape and then take it apart again.

Cutting off that triangle piece of sheet metal on the front right part of tail cone was a bit disconcerting. Read that section about 5 times before cutting it off. lol.

Here are a few pictures [ed. and videos in later replies. v/r,dr]... "


Mothership HOBBS Meter



February 13, 2019.  Issue #4,759
  Any Central/North Texas RV folks out there dentists?  Mine retired and I need one.  I can fly to you if it's not too far from DFW.  Might make for a nice travel story <probably not>.  Anywho, contact info here if you have that doctor diploma hanging on your office wall with teeth on it, and you're courtesy car distance from the airport.  I'll buy lunch.
  As I sit here at my desk in the home office typing this, an RV just flew over my house.  A local rubbing it in ;^).  Flew a ground track away from the window so I'd be sure to look outside.
  RV life is good. 

Kurt Wooten's RV-9A With Fresh Paint Job ...pics

Kurt (and friend Larry) picked up Kurt's 9A Tuesday at GLO Custom.  Gorgeous paint job and blue skies made for some nice photos before BBQ.  Hope you enjoy.  Great looking plane.  Very nice guys!  (Kurt is 'krw5927' in the forums). dr


Pouring Elevator Counterbalance Lead ...Bill E.

What I did..

On my -4, I made a simple wood mold that mimicked the rib shape and depth. I took my completed elevator, minus the weight and set up on balance point, then filled baggie with lead shot and taped to rib tip, adjusting amount until slightly nose heavy (compensate for paint). I then melted and poured into wood mold. After cooling, drilled and counter-bored for mounting bolt through rib. Test fit with bolt/nut while in balance jig to obtain slight nose heavy condition. I then primed the lead weight (rib already primed, and installed the weight with Proseal to completely water seal the weight in the rib. The finished product looks almost molded in, and was painted during final paint. In the event it would still balance nose heavy, it is possible to drill a hole to remove weigh, then touch up paint. I do not like the idea of a bonded or glued weight, because if it comes loose, your elevator will likely jam, and obviously, you risk flutter with loss of balance, hence, mine are bolted and sealed in place. The whole process from mold making to installed took an afternoon at best.


Panel Porn ...klewin


G3X Touch Software V7.00 Available 2/12/19 ...g3xpert

Garmin is pleased to announce G3X Touch Software Version 7.00 is now available for download. You can download the free software from the Garmin website.

Changes made from version 6.30 to 7.00:
•Add ability to temporarily toggle map orientation by touching north arrow symbol
•Add ability to share internal GPS navigation data with G5
•Add support for GSA 28 servos used for pitch trim and roll trim
•Add support for sky pointer roll indicator display on PFD
•Add support for Kavlico P4055-5020 pressure sensors
•Add support for GAD 27 absolute flap position mode
•Add option to sequence flight plan legs based on distance from next waypoint
•Add fault indication when GAD 27 is not receiving required power
•Add configuration page for general system options
•Add configuration page for PFD options
•Add configuration option to prevent changes to AFCS configuration and AOA calibration when not in config mode
•Add configuration option to display pairs of fuel quantity gauges separately
•Add configuration option to disable PFD pitch adjustment
•Add configuration option to disable flight director attention tones
•Add support for RS-232 interface to GMA 342/345
•Add ability to save and restore configuration data using SD card
•Add AHRS diagnostic page
•Improve G5 interface
•Improve Connext flight plan interface
•Improve weight and balance envelope editing
•Improve runway label display on map
•Improve airport runway information display
•Improve traffic target ground track numeric display
•Improve UMA 1EU50A pressure sensor conversion
•Improve flight plan forced leg activation
•Improve flight plan source selection at powerup
•Improve display of radar coverage data
•Improve minimums bug on round altimeter gauge
•Improve user waypoint page
•Improve proximity waypoint page
•Improve position edit page
•Improve gear warning logic for turbine aircraft
•Improve radial engine cylinder temperature display
•Improve operation of ESP controls on MFD
•Change checklist page to preserve progress when page is closed
•Change audio alert when automatically engaging autopilot due to ESP activity
•Change flight director attention tone sound to be distinct from disengage tone
•Change display of AFCS trim and airspeed annunciations
•General improvements to system operation
•Includes update to audio data version 2.50
•Includes update to G5 software version 6.00
•Includes update to G5 boot block software version 2.20
•Includes update to GAD27 software version 2.30
•Includes update to GAD27 boot block software version 2.30
•Includes update to GAD29 software version 3.10
•Includes update to GAD29 boot block software version 3.10
•Includes update to GDL5X software version 2.12
•Includes update to GEA24 software version 3.50
•Includes update to GEA24 boot block software version 2.20
•Includes update to GI260 software version 2.80
•Includes update to GI260 boot block software version 2.20
•Includes update to GMA245 software version 2.50
•Includes update to GMA245 boot block software version 2.30
•Includes update to GMC507 software version 2.80
•Includes update to GMC507 boot block software version 2.30
•Includes update to GPS20A software version 2.30
•Includes update to GPS20A boot block software version 2.10
•Includes update to GSA28 software version 4.30
•Includes update to GSA28 boot block software version 2.20
•Includes update to GSU25/B software version 3.80
•Includes update to GSU25/B boot block software version 2.20
•Includes update to GTR20/200 software version 3.30
•Includes update to GTR20/200 boot block software version 2.30
•Includes GDL39 software version 4.81
•Includes GMA245 audio software version 2.20
•Includes GMA245 Bluetooth software version 2.00
•Includes GMU11 software version 2.00
•Includes GMU11 boot block software version 2.00
•Includes GSU73 software version 3.70
•Includes GSU73 IGRF database version 1.03 (Base Year 2015)



February 12, 2019.  Issue #4,758

Alton Bay 2019 ...the Vladinator

I went up north a while ago. On my way to Rangeley ME I decided to land on famous ice. It was windy and not many planes made it that day.  continue


Some Screen Grabs and a Short Video ...GP app

RE: Icing Levels and more in Flight Profile view

Yesterday a few people asked in a thread about the Flight Profile view in the Garmin Pilot EFB app and its display of icing levels (and winds and clouds).  I grabbed a few screens off my iPad, annotated them, and recorded a short video of the helpful 'widgets' that I use planning most flights.  You can see the (5) screen grabs and (1) video HERE (the last image in the folder is the video).  I find the flight profile view helpful in planning a cruising altitude (you can drag the altitude line up/down - shows wind speeds/values and direction).

Hope this helps those who were curious. 


Classic Aero RV-14 Side Panel Pictures ...Luke

Hello RV-14 Builders,

I'm sorry this has taken longer than I expected it would. I've lost count of the number of major design changes we've made, and there still may be a few tweaks before it's said and done. That said, these pictures should represent the final design for the most part.

If you have questions about the side panels that others might benefit from, please ask here rather than calling, and I'll try to keep tabs on this thread. I'll also start off by answering a few questions here too:
•We are starting out with "Cabin Area" side panels for now (that is what these pictures show). Full baggage panels will be available. Timing to be determined as we get further along shipping these.

More pics

•We are still working out pricing. All of the information for the cabin area side panels should be on our website sometime next week. We won't be taking any orders until then.

•Other products for the RV-14 will include Glareshield trim, and a much more basic side panel package for those that like the more spartan look. Timing to be determined further down the road.

•The hidden canopy latch mechanism is a custom design to work with our side panels. It is retrofitable. The handle will be anodized aluminum (the mockup is a painted 3D printed part).

•The lighter area near the top is the painted structure. All other areas are covered in our standard upholstery materials so that they match our seats. Colors can be arranged to your preference.

•Headset jacks are in the stock location.

•Based on past experience, we have used 2024 T3 Aluminum for the structure. This reduces weight (we will have final weight numbers when production parts are ready), increases durability, and aids adhesion. The only molded plastic part is the air vent trim.

•With a few very small exceptions, there are no visible fasteners.

•The black trim below the latch is machined aluminum.

Comments and constructive feedback are welcome. These have been a long time coming. They may look fairly simple to the casual observer, but hundreds of hours of design and prototyping went into these. Hope you all like them

Here are more pictures


Bruce Hill Copperstate Photos


200kt GS Club ...bruceh

I finally was able to hit the magic 200+ Knot ground speed on the way to the Copperstate Fly In. This is of course only possible with a really strong 44 Knot direct tailwind, but it is in level flight with "Otto" the pilot at the controls. The green circle on the map is my "glide ring", you can see how skewed it is towards the North East. At one point I saw a 48 knot tailwind. It was actually quite smooth all the way out to Buckeye, AZ. I decided to enrichen the mixture a bit and see what the true speed of the airplane could be at altitude.
My usual 6.5 gph speed is around 147-150 Knots (LOP), so with 9 gph it was going only 8-10 knots faster.


Bird Strike PIREP ...luca

I had to wait some months to write this story due to some ‘insurance misunderstanding’.

It was a relaxed and calm sunny day last year on May 25. I liked to give, to our local kindly “tower girl operator” what we call the RV Grin. So at 3 pm local time we were in the air.

After a 30 minutes flight I was descending over the home field at 190 Kts and without seeing nothing I only heard a GREAT 'bang', really loud (something like shooting with a S&W 686 a .357 Magnum bullet w/o ears protection).

The condition of the windshield immediately gave me the idea of what happened. Fly the airplane, stay calm, reduce speed and power, deep breath was my automatic routine.  continue


Busy Weekend

I decided to make the best of the weather this past weekend and get a few things from my list accomplished inside the hangar that have been lurking over my shoulder. I have to admit to being a bit complacent the past few years and let my instrument currency lapse. Northern California is an easy place to let that happen with abundant sunshine and few reasons to feel the need to fly IMC. I used to fly a Socata Trinidad when living in Ft. Myers and filed IFR nearly every flight, feeling safer under the watchful eye of ATC. Well, I finally got my act together and practiced, re-learned, and took a combo IPC and BFR last week, passing both. As a reward, I purchased a second GTR-20 for my -9A. I always said that I wanted a second comm but just didn't get around to installing it. The threat of flying IFR was enough to get me in the mood to dive back under the panel and do this. So I called my friend and patient teacher Randy Throne to arrange some help. We updated my ELT to an ACK 406 and fixed that co-pilot PTT that didn't work since the panel upgrade (it helps if one actually attaches the ground..... oops). Last, we replaced the left side fuel sender that was going south. Everything went together and worked right out of the box. the ELT is registered, comm broadcasts and the PTT is happy with electrons moving in the right direction. All in all a very busy but successful and fun weekend in the hangar. Thanks Randy, I always enjoy working on the plane and learning the right way to do something.
RV-9A N435KR Vans calendar March 2018
IO 320 B1A, Dual LS Plasma III, AFP injection
G3x touch


Frustrated: Squeezer bending rivets ...Girraf

I'm most of the way through my empennage and I'm still struggling to get my squeezer to to not pull the shop heads as they set. Biasing the tail towards the throat side of the sets seems to help but its not always possible to make that happen because the nose of the yoke inevitably hits the web of whatever is being riveted (see photo). ...



February 11, 2019.  Issue #4,757

Angel Fire with The Daughter ...crabandy


Milestone: Commercial Rating (checkride in the RV-6)

Checkride this past Friday afternoon out of KWEA.  DPE Joe Johnson (card below).  Firm but fair, expects you to know your stuff.  Know your EFB app and your weather.  Detail-oriented oral w/many scenarios.  The flying part was more enjoyable - turns out 2,500+ landings in this thing is a confidence builder.  Stalls, emergency descents, sim'd engine out 180* landing, soft field, short field, spot landing, simulated fouled runway in the flare.  The flying was fun!

Joe Johnson photo

Thank you Mr. Johnson for a professional, well done checkride.  I would certainly recommend you to any RV pilot that would listen.  Thank you Gary Platner, RV-8 owner and CFII rock star.  Thank you Monkey for one seriously dialed in plane.  And last but not least, thanks again to Mr. VanGrunsven for designing such a wonderful flying machine.

Took both IFR and Commercial checkrides in the RV.  What a honor to get to do that!

It felt strange Saturday morning (and Sunday) to not have that Oral Test Prep book in my lap.  I'm getting over it. ;^)

The next day....icing and OVC all around.


Digging Out My RV-6 ...mbauer

Was sick last week, wasn't able to dig out the RV after each snow storm until yesterday.

Nikiski received more snow than Kenai, it is 15.2-miles from my driveway to the tie downs at the Kenai Airport (PAEN).

When I arrived after work yesterday, the RV was isolated by about 10-inches of frozen snow. It rained at 40 degrees F and then cooled down to below freezing before it started to snow.

Only way I could move the snow was by using a metal square tip shovel to break it up and then a plastic snow shovel to move it out of the way. Took three hours to clear the tie-down. Worked up a sweat wearing a t-shirt in 12 deg F coolness.

Anyway here are a few photos...


Passed Inspection! ...AviatorJ RV-10

Still hasn't hit me yet but as of yesterday N10JW is Airworthy! She successfully passed with no major issues. The DAR was fantastic throughout the process, fielding the numerous questions I had as well as help in completing all the fun FAA paperwork!

For the actual inspection he gave me to posture of the plane prior to coming out. Basically access panels removed, empennage fairing no screws, baggage panels removed but the engine cowled up. He spent about 45 mins looking over the plane, we also removed the cowling so he could see the engine. All in all I had 5 or so items he wanted me to double check and made some great suggestions.

We then went back to the heated FBO where he looked at my build log, FAA forms and made all the appropriate entries. He also walked me through the special airworthiness certificate which now also includes operating limitations. After everything was completed and explained we took the obligatory inspection picture and now I'm clear to fly!


Another Panel Layout Thread ...N804RV


1) I'd welcome comments and criticism on this panel layout. This is a rough idea. All switches and circuit breakers have not been accounted for yet. Trying to keep the 430W high enough in the panel to clear the aft LG tower support. And, keep the PFD nearly centered.

2) As far as keeping the PFD close to centered: Can the SkyView 7" Classic display be configured so the the PFD is on the right (60%), and the map on the left (40%)? I always see the PFD on the left side of the screen.


Status Report ...KazooRV-9A

Canopy skirts are in place! No small feat.... Friend Ken was over last week and we put in 36 man hours total to get them in place. I like how the instructions say, that after all the work it took to fit the bubble to the frame and actually achieve a rolling closure with proper fit, that the rear skirts are the hardest part of the canopy build. I disagree, they were tricky,,, but not the hardest part.

AND.... Here's the long awaited first look at the Aerotronics gauge panel sitting in place. I've waited two years to see this little gem in the cockpit. I'm betting the original builder (Marty Johnson - Gone west) can see it now, and is thrilled, he surely spec'd out a nice panel.


Good News ...vic syracuse

A couple of things I want to share:

First, our youngest son, Nick, earned his Private Pilot's license this week. He's been working with me in the business for a while, too. It's really heartwarming and way cool to see your son enthused about aviation as much as I am.

Second, Many of you may have heard by now that we have finally opened up our new facility at Falcon Field (KFFC). Next Saturday February 16 (rain date Feb 23), we are going to have an open house from 11-2, with barbecue. So if you are looking for a place to fly to next Saturday, we would love to see you!

We will be giving out T-shirts with our company logo on the front and a catchy phrase on the back I think you will all get a kick out of.

The new hangar is on the Southeast corner of the airfield, on the left hand side as you land on Runway 31. It's a large empty ramp with only our hangar there now, so you can't miss it.

If you think you might make it, please RSVP to my email. We want to have enough food. We won't hold you to it if you don't make it.



February 8, 2019.  Issue #4,756
  Got in a .2 Thursday for a post-Mx flight in the cold wind.  Bumpy, crosswind, but all the gauges good.  Fresh annual, hoses, fluids and more.  Thanks to Monk for the help.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.


New Plane for me

Hey gang!!
I bought a nice RV-6 this past weekend. Its a tip up with a Lyc O-360 and FP Prop. My previous RV was an 8 that I built. Air on the ground was not an issue with the 8....this tip up thing cooked me on the ground at 74*F!!! it is too heavy to just ride around while holding it open. I know there's gotta be a better way...HAHAHA!!! please tell me the secret...
Also, today was my first time flying it. Very heavy left wing with full (even) fuel. My 8 had a heavy wing and I remember there was a trick for fixing this...as I recall I put two paint stirrers on the trailing edge of the aileron and then used an edge seamer to "crimp" the trailing edge..I just can't remember which aileron to "adjust"!! Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Joel McMillian


Eagle's Nest Projects - Montgomery HS (TX) - A little fun in the shop

...video of the 'First Landing'. ;^)


Eagle's Nest Projects - McKinney HS (TX) - NBC_DFW Ch5 Education Feature

Video- NBC_DFW Ch5 Features McKinney Aviation Academy Students Learn Aviation Skills at McKinney High School - NBC (Morning intro...)


Mothership News....


JDAir new Canopy Latch

The JD Air Parts tip up canopy latch has been slightly redesigned for a better appearance. Mechanically, it is exactly the same. The reason for the design change is two fold. 1) The previous version was water jet cut and then required machining. 2) My company doing the machining looked at the drawings and felt the latches could be machined quicker with a better appearance.

RV7 builder Sean Blair installed one in his plane. He had the old version and installed the new one for comparison. He said it works exactly the same. He will probably chime in with his thoughts and impressions.

And, in the interest of safety, we are also offering the latches anodized red. I thought this was important as a critical handle for egress. I don't have pictures of the red version but will get them on the site soon.



February 7, 2019.  Issue #4,755

Paint! ...skyking902001

Finally got some paint on the -8. Painted by GLO Aircraft Painting--Roanoke, TX (52F). Mark and the guys did an outstanding job!


New Guy ...gcman6 (Fredericksburg, PA RV-7)

I received my empennage kit yesterday! I am building a taildragger with slider canopy and manual flaps and trim. I still need to finish setting up my shop and finish the kit inventory. But, I made some headway on it last night and hope to finish it tonight after work. I've been dreaming about building an airplane for some time and and am super excited to get started. If anyone else is building a -7 in the southeastern PA area, please reach out. I'd love to connect with any fellow builders in my area.


Aileron Bellcrank Grease ...Mudfly

I'm ready to install the aileron bellcranks in the wings (RV14). Not sure about other models, but the bellcrank design for -14 has a brass bushing that is inserted into the steel housing of the bellcrank. The assembly is placed in position and secured using a AN4-32A. When the bolt is properly torqued, the bolt and brass bushing are to remain stationary with the rotation occurring between the bushing and the steel bellcrank. There is no mention in the plans of lubricating this rotation point, but I was thinking it may be a good idea. My question is what would be the better lubrication. LPS-2 and Lubriplate 630-AA are two products that I'm considering. It seems both may have pros and cons.
The pros for the Lubriplate would seem to be longer lasting. However, the con would be when it is time to replace, the bellcrank assembly would need to be disassembled. Also, will this lubriplate break down during the heat of the summer and drip out the bottom? That's what happens to grease in my grease guns out in the garage during summer. The pro for the LPS-2 would seem that when time to re-lube, it would just require opening the access panel on the bottom wing skin and applying fresh lube using a flexible tube. The con for LPS-2 would seem that it would need to be re-applied at shorter intervals.
I realize I'm overthinking this, but was just curious what others have used, and actual lubrication requirements for this part once in service.


Legally Heating a Hangar ...mfleming

So I purchased a hangar recently

One of the improvements I would like to do is install a fixed vented propane heater.

Because I will be renting the hangar out until I am ready to move my -7 project into the hangar I applied for a commercial lease. Oregon requires a commercial lease if ANY revenue is being made off of the hangar.

Anyway, while researching heaters I came across NFPA 409. This states that heaters must be at least 10' above the wing of the aircraft.

I might get the heater 10' above the wing of my -7 but the rule says 10' above any aircraft that can fit in the hangar (I'm paraphrasing). Not happening

I read all about portable heaters...I'm interested in the fixed variety.

So, Do I have to comply with this NFPA 409?
What is everyone else doing with hangars with lower ceilings and heat??

The top of my door is 12', the door opens to about 10' 8"... No way to meet the rules as far as I can see


Build Site Up! ...randylervold

I just wanted to let the -12 folks know that I finally got my -12iS site up... rv12driver.com


FlyLED Test Video ...Av8torTom

Finished assembling my FlyLED, "The Works". This is the first time I've had one of the wing-tips outside in the dark. Paul at FlyLEDs was a BIG help. Pretty impressed.



February 6, 2019.  Issue #4,754
  Annual almost done.  Engine run (no drips) and stuff going back in/on.  Hope to test fly Wednesday.  Wx might not allow.  Sad face. 

More RV-10 Bahama Pics ...Ivan Kristensen


Exit diffuser on oil cooler to increase flow through oil cooler ...scsmith

I want to do some cowl work to reduce my cooling exit flow area and at the same time reduce overall frontal area.

But before I can do that, I have to do two other things. One is make a seal around the crankshaft/spinner gap. As you close off the cooling exit, raising the pressure in the lower cowl plenum, you want the higher pressure to result in higher exit velocities out of the cooling exit, not just spill out around the spinner. So I have to do that.

The other thing I need to do is increase the flow through the oil cooler. The angle-valve engines put a lot more of the heat load into the oil, and efficient oil cooling is crucial. I've been very happy with my firewall-mounted cooler arrangement with the large 20006A cooler, I have good oil temperatures even during a long climb at Vy on a hot day. But as I close off the cowl exit and increase the pressure in the lower plenum, the oil cooler flow will decrease because of the reduced pressure differential across the oil cooler. So..how to get that flow back? put a diffuser on the cooler exit. The trick is to do this smoothly enough get good pressure recovery without a lot of length that wouldn't fit in the cowl area. Short, wide-angle diffusers can work pretty well. The pressure in the oil cooler flow at the exit of the diffuser will match the local static pressure in the area around it. Ideally, if the diffuser is flowing well, this results in lower pressure at the exit face of the cooler itself. Its like immersing the cooler in the throat of a venturi.

I made a mold out of wood, painted and waxed it, and laid up a fiberglass diffuser. The diffuser geometry has an area ratio of 1.45. This will also be a good trial of the high-temperature hardener system (3136R) I got for the Jeffco 3107 (Rhino) epoxy we use. The diffuser was room temperature cured, then removed from the mold and post-cured, 1/2 hr at 150F, 1/2 hr at 175F, then 2 hr at 200F. Hopefully this will give a high enough glass-transition temperature (T_g) for the epoxy to survive the hot environment in the lower cowl. Here are a couple of pictures of the installation: continue


Exit Diffuser on Oil Cooler ...DanH input

Ahh, the Chinese menu dilemma: fast, cheap, good...pick any two.

FWIW, I have a row of miniature bulkhead fittings installed in my firewall. Buy a length of 10-32 threaded rod. Cut it into 1-1/2" lengths. Chuck it in the lathe and machine a half inch of threads off each end, leaving a half inch of threads in the middle. Center bore with something small. Now drill a 3/16" hole in the firewall and fasten with a plain nut on each side. 1/8" tubing pushes over the threadless ends.

I have something similar installed in the rear baffle wall, four lengths of brass model airplane tubing soldered in a brass plate.

In an attempt to read static pressure only, I usually go with piccolo tubes, but you know more about that stuff than I'll ever learn. continue


RV-10 Status Report ...LCampbell

Work is underway, and I’m having a blast!
Really impressed with how well thought out and designed all of this is. It gives encouragement and confidence in the path that lay ahead.
To the guys in Missouri, I’m looking forward to crossing paths with you all, and getting to see your birds. I’m getting to know the guys at the Jeff City EAA, and it looks like a great group.

To Mike S, neat to connect the dots through our mutual friend, and thanks for the well wishes as well.

I’ve one small question… one of the photos is a really close up shot of the small bend that’s to be put on the trailing edge of the rudder skin. Does that amount looks about right? That seemed to be about how much I did on the small practice kit that was a 1 foot aileron section, and it seemed to turn out ok. But I’d rather not glue the trailing edge together, and have it curl up during riveting.


Garmin Pilot v9.5.3 is out...FYI.


RV-6A PROJECT For Sale $13K

Listing for RV friend Bob Mozina

Partially complete, Out of jig, Gear legs drilled, All tail surfaces completed.Wings completed except for lower wing skins the are drilled and ready too install. Excellent workmanship!! Wing tip strobes , Electric Flaps, Engine mount, All aircraft wire to complete. Complete O320 Engine. Plane located in Florida (FL10 airport) $13,000. Please contact Bob Mozina 980-699-5380. Bobmozina5 'at gmail 'dot' com



Pic of Luke/Franz's Planes in Hangar ...DeeCee 57


Mothership News



February 5, 2019.  Issue #4,753 

From Italy to Texas ...fradante (Francesco)

[ed. Trip report from my RV friend in Italy.  What a great guy!!!!  Great fun talking with him and his friends.  v/r,dr]

While on a trip in Texas I had the opportunity to meet DR in person at the VanCave.  I landed at 52F with my friend’s Cardinal, he’s spending four years as instructor at Sheppard AFB.  After a visit to the VanCave, we went to a tex mex for lunch with some other RV guys.  We had good food and we spent a very good time talking together about plane and flying, at 52F there is a big and friendly RV community!

THE Jay Pratt and Francesco!

At the end of the visit I asked Doug about Jay Pratt and Hicks field, and in a couple of minutes the “VAF connection” arranged for us a stop to meet Jay at his shop. VAF it’s a big help while building and a fast lane in connecting people.  Once again I had the feeling that building and flying it’s all about friends.  continue

[ed. Who is fradante?  He's the guy in the orange RV-8 in the CrewRV8 formation team <g> v/r,dr]


New steering link geometry ...scsmith

Some of you will have seen the thread that I started several years ago after a surprise groundloop occurred in a strong starboard cross wind when the steering link unexpectedly and suddenly released.

That thread stimulated a lot of good discussion on several related topics, one of which is the asymmetry of a "rocket link" steering link in the release points when steering left and right. The asymmetry is caused by the angle at the rudder horn from the rudder hinge axis to the attach point for the steering link being a different angle than the angle at the steering arm from the tail wheel pivot axis to the attach point for the steering link.

After some discussion with Darwin Barrie at JD Airparts, he arranged to make a modified steering arm. I spent a little while doing some trig and analytic geometry to come up with a length and sweep angle of the steering arm that would produce a symmetrical release action to the left and right, and have both directions cause release of the tail wheel lock just at the extreme deflection of the rudder. Darwin sent me the the new steering arm and a longer steering link to test out. Here are some pictures of the installation.

I have not been able to fly this installation yet because of weather, ongoing condition inspection, and some other activities. But I will report back here as soon as I can fly with it. I can tell you that on the ground, if you pull the rudder all the way to the stop, and put pressure on the tail wheel in the direction it would feel if steering, it does NOT release. Same left and right. If you put the rudder all the way to the stop and put pressure on the tail wheel in the direction to make it swivel intentionally, it does release. Same left and right.

You can also see that I substitute a normal rod end with an AN3 bolt and AN970 washer, plus some of the rod end spacer washers that Vans sells, in place of the integral rod end + stud that is supplied. This insures that the rod end stays captive in the very unlikely event that the bearing fails.

So I am pretty optimistic that this will be a nice improvement to the steering link system for those that like it. The steering link system is quicker steering than chains or cables with springs and a little slack, and arguably not as rugged as cables with springs. So there is still room for personal preference here. But for those of us that like the quick, positive steering feel, this new steering arm should give you symmetrical behavior.
Steve Smith
Aeronautical Engineer
RV-8 N825RV


RVs connected people ...Luke in Italy

The very first VFR day after a while in my area created a connection opportunity.  Three builders, good guys - all in the liner pilot business and never met together, arrived in my home base to meet me.

Dan, retired from airline, flew his red/yellow RV-6 from Swiss.  Hermann, Lufthansa pilot, own an RV-7 and an RV-8. He has some serious plans to cross the Pond to Oshkosh with the 8.   Tobias - the booster - flies his brand new RV-7. He's a young pilot for Swiss Airline. Hermann and Tobias arrived from distinct Germany area.

We spent some hours to speak about RVs, they took a look of a pair of nice 8s , so we had a lunch together. Thank you for your visit ! See you soon.

"It’s the airplanes that bring us together. It’s the people who keep us coming back."  continue/more pics

[ed. Luca!  The calendar you sent me arrived in the mail Monday.  Thank you very much!!!!  On our refrigerator right now!!!! v/r,dr


RV14 panel design - give us any advice ...romanov (Israel)

Hello fellow builders,

It is first time I am designing IFR panel full of avionic devices I never used (yet). So please give me your best opinion on the work so far.  Your experience here is the most valuable piece of information that can be.

Thanks a lot:


Status Report ...Tdeman -6

I got a deal on a second hand engine mount, gear legs, and wheels that came off of a colleagues RV-6. As a bonus, it had wheel and leg fairings already installed. I decided to see how the mount lined up with the holes that were in my firewall already. The top two holes were dead on, but the bottom two were both more then half a hole off to the inside… Symmetrically, so there was no way to realign the mount to get it to work… Measured the mount, and it’s right to spec, so somehow, sometime before I got it, the firewall and weldements were miss drilled to 1/4”. Time for some surgery to get things right…continue


February 4, 2019.  Issue #4,752 

Build Update ...jcarne

Well now that the flaps are done I decided to do the aileron and elevator push rods. First I had to take a couple of weeks off for this bundle of joy. Say hello to my new aviator named Avden with his custom RV hat.  ...


Condition inspection RV9A/ compression tests.

Working on my condition inspection in my logbook for engine I have a note with my compression tests from last year that indicate satisfactory with AC 90.116-98. I wanted to read that but I cannot find it I am assuming it is a advisory circular. When checking on the Internet I show no results found. After checking my Lycoming manual I am not finding a set of values for compression test. Help! Ron in Oregon


Almost There

...16th annual inspection in the final stretch.  Engine cleaned, new valve cover gaskets, intake pipe gaskets, oil breather line hose and more.  Man that thing looks clean.  I like.

full size


Bahama trip follow-up

I just returned from my 4 day (3 nights) trip to the Bahamas in a nut shell it was a fantastic in every way. I began the trip fairly early the morning of Jan. 28 and flew to Fort Meyers airport (KFMY) where I picked up my long time friend Art Kampf. From there we flew non stop to New Bight airport (MYCB) on Cat Island in the Bahamas. Flight time was 2.3 hrs. Clearing customs there was easy and took only a frw minutes plus a fee of $60.00  continue


Pan Pan ...Ed W.

“Approach, experimental XYZ, pan, pan.” That got their attention!

I’d used mayday two or three times in the past, but this was the first time using pan. I was flying with a friend, and when he gave me the controls back in the RV-9A after doing a turn, the stick was really heavy. The elevator trim indicator showed way, way nose down – uncommanded. And the elevator trim switch was ineffective. After talking it over with my friend, also a very experienced CFI, we decided this was an appropriate PAN situation and going home right away was the best course.

We were about 8 minutes out, about 120 knots, and what to do? ATC offered closer airports, but home base seemed pretty doable. But it took a LOT of pull on the stick.

The first decision was that I had him fly so I wouldn’t be landing an out of trim airplane with really tired arms. 


RV-10 'Poster' ...charrois

Here is mine, while on static display at an airshow. About 200 hours of flying on it now, and worth every hour of construction time!


Keeping fuel pump cool

Hi everyone.

I've been having ongoing issues with fuel pressure fluctuations at higher altitudes and am trying to get them resolved once and for all. I've done everything I can think of to keep the tunnel cool (insulated firewall and floor of the tunnel, pipe wrap insulation around the scat tubes there, etc.), but that hasn't helped. I'm now in the process of moving my fuel flow transducer out of the tunnel and instead between the engine pump and servo as the "red cube" manufacturers suggest to avoid the possibility of the transducer being a source of vapour lock. I've also changed my fuel pressure sensor in case it was faulty in some way. I'm still working on these changes so haven't done a flight yet to see if the situation improves, but while the plane is down am trying to improve the performance of the fuel system as much as possible.

But something which still strikes me as "poor design" is that when cabin heat isn't required, heat from the exhaust muffs is directed to the area between the firewall and engine, right where the engine fuel pump is. I have the stainless cabin heat selector vents as well, which help to prevent heat from leaking into the cabin when it's not wanted, but does nothing to keep the area aft of the engine cool. 


Newbie question: skin dent

Just starting out on my VS and I made my first (of many I'm sure) goof. Flipped VS-706 upside-down and when I wrapped the skin, the rib created a small but visible dent. I should have known better. I'll probably order a new skin to be safe, but would be helpful to get a second opinion. Am I going overboard or is this going to bother me every time I look at it?


11th annual ice cream social at Inyokern, CA on March 9th

The 11th annual ice cream social will be held at Inyokern, CA airport on March 9th from 1100-1400.

The ice cream social is just an excuse to get together, eat some free ice cream and fly. It started as a way to get folks involved and has grown every year. Last year was a bust due to weather. Hope we can make for it this year.

If you would like to attend, please email me at axel_alvarez "at" hotmail "dot" com Use "Ice cream social" on the subject line of the email for spam filter reasons. If not, it will end up in the "trash/recycling bin" and I won't know you are coming. The head count will be used to figure out how much supplies my wife and I need to buy. All I need is your name and the number of people attending by March 2nd. Please DON'T wait until the last minute. 


Ted Chang New Kit Status ...mothership fb post


Prop Crack Update

Closing this out, here's the statement from the engineers at Sensenich published with Don Rowell's perimission:

"The crack occurred at the 30% ply drop. While the crack did not and likely would not have propagated into the spar, it did go through all layers of the skin laminate. We cut into the laminate at the crack location, but we were unable to find any abnormal type of discontinuity. This is the first like this we have observed on a production propeller blade.

It is our recommendation that we replace both blades free of charge. At this point, we believe this to be a discrete failure due to an irregularity that industry standard quality control practices were unable to diagnose.

We have sectioned the blade, and will certainly continue to diagnose and if needed correct the issue that caused the failure. We do feel strongly that the alternate load paths found in the blades would have prevented this failure from becoming catastrophic."

As I said above, I will monitor the new blades carefully. As someone else said, there's no such thing as a company that hasn't supplied defective product. I expect to have a good experience with the new blades and think that Don and his staff have done all that can be expected.


Neat Freak Porn

Seen at Monk's during my annual.  Oh baby... 



February 1, 2019.  Issue #4,751
  Continuing the annual on the RV-6.  Gaskets, hoses, plugs, etc.  The tailwheel bushing is pretty shot - might be the year to replace that after a decade and change of abuse use.  It might be nice to have positive, firm tailwheel steering again - currently it's sorta a 'suggestion'. ;^).  I gave Darwin a call and he gave me some idears.  Developing...
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.


Upgraded Mothership Website and Brand

...pretty great looking!  Give it a look!


A New Look For Van's Aircraft ...the press release.


Wallpaper Calendar for February

Photo courtesy Ed Hicks
Flow Images Ltd, 3C Lower Lapdown Workshops,
Lapdown Lane, Tormarton, Badminton, GL9 1JE.  Tel: 07973 715211


Why I fly Young Eagles ...D. Gherardini

Gents, After reading the posts from the few who DON'T fly young eagles, I felt compelled to tell my story. This is gonna be long, But, I MUST tell it.
About 7 or 8 years ago or so, A fellow pilot friend of mine from another EAA chapter called me on a friday eve, and asked, "You are coming to our fly-in tomorrow ?" And I said, " You bet, in fact Im gonna try and make two fly-ins tomorrow because there is also a fly-in car-show at Pekin Muni." He said great, would you consider doing us a big favor and helping out with the Young eagle rides? Last year we had over 100 kids show up and we think this year will be even bigger, and one of our members just called me. He went out to his hangar to check on his Cherokee and found a puddle of oil underneath, so he has canceled, and we are worried we wont have enough aircraft to get them all done." ...

Now, I had been a EAA guy for many , many years. And I really never much paid attention to the young eagle stuff..always too busy to give it much thought. Not that I dont go to fly-ins. I attend a fly-in somewhere just about every single weekend of the summer. Hated it when I missed one within range of whatever aircraft I owned at the time. Looking back, I was just selfishly thinking about my own fun, and not any kids. Now this friend who called, he is a really good friend, and as I was thinking about probably not being able to make BOTH events if I got wrestled into this, so I was trying to figure out an excuse to turn him down. Anyway, because of our friendship, I just couldnt. So I agreed. I can tell you, I flew up to their airport early the next morning, kind of bummed out, feeling like it was a chore I was not much interested in.

Well, for whatever reason, not as many kids showed up as they had hoped, and after flying about 40 or so, we were done. I cheered up, as I now was going to be able to make that other fly-in with the car-show now. Before I left, as I had plenty of time now, I walked over to where the pres of that chapter, some other officers and the other pilots were sitting in the shade of a Cessna wing and took the extra lawn chair to jaw with them. They were all discussing what had gone wrong, why the turnout was poor, where they spent their advertising money, and how "unsuccessful" the event was.They were all, "Down in the jaw" I didn't say much as I am not a member of that chapter, and wouldnt have known a successful event from a bust anyway.

While this discussion was going on, we noticed a woman walking towards us from up by the area where to food vendors and other activity was. She had a kid, maybe 8 or 9 by the hand and continued walking our way with this somber, serious look on her face, and kind of a "John Wayne" jaunt to her step. Pretty quick, everybody shut up as she was definitely coming straight toward us. When she stopped in our midst, she said, " Excuse me men, But I would like to speak with the pilot of that Yellow airplane right over there."..and she pointed right at my craft. GULP...I was floored..I didnt recognize the kid as one I had flown, but figgered I was about to get reamed by a mad mother for something, making her kid sick , or scared, or who knows what..and all I could think of was..I knew I never should have done this. So I stood and simply said, "That would be me ma'am." geting prepared to take my licks. I think all my friends were taking a step or two backwards as I stood..you could have heard a pin drop.... Then she began. "MY son rode with you this morning, and I wanted to ask you a favor, I Just didnt see this coming. He just turned 16 last fall and got his drivers license, and he has been in so much trouble. His grades at school have been terrible, he wont mind me or his stepdad. He has been in trouble with the police and he has not come home several nights"...she continued on about the boy, and their problems, for a bit.cant remember all she said, but I do remember she said "he wont even stand up straight anymore"..anyway, she continued, "But something just happened to him, and I really think he is going to straighten up. " When he got out of that plane he came running to me and asked me for my phone, because he needed to call his dad right now! " I gave him my phone and he called his father. I heard him apologize for the trouble he has been in, which he has NEVER done before, and when school starts he will get good grades and he will do what Mom and his stepdad tells him and how sorry he was, because..he just has to learn to fly, and the pilot told him..He had to study hard, get good grades, because Aviation is expensive, but its worth whatever you have to pay. Nothing beats flying." "Well, im sorry sir for the trouble, but I just didnt see it coming, I had to go to the car and get my camera and if you dont mind, I'd like to take a picture of you and him next to that airplane. I dont want him to forget today."

Talk about floored..I was not expecting this. Of course I said "yes 'ma'am, and as we started to walk towards my 912 KitFox, I saw that boy come running down from the main hangar area where he was waiting. AHhhh..now I remember him..he was that kid with the chip on his shoulder..acting too cool, and like he was just gonna do but it wasnt gonna be anything. HE was the kid that, after we got to altitude, and asked him if he wanted to take the stick, and of course he did..and after about one minute..he melted, and became super enthusiastic. He got the hang real quick, as most 16 year old boys would..and as I coached him thru the next two turns, he did really well. I felt good about it then, but I had no idea of his troubles..and now, well, as it turns out Thanks to his mom, two boys lives were changed that day. Mom took her photos, and we parted. I noticed something also, as they walked away, he was standing up straight and held his chin high.
I was immediately overcome with both pride, and then shame. So proud I might have had a chance to change a wayward young mans life positively, and so danged ashamed, I had ignored this program..well..since it started. What a selfish turd i thought of myself in the next moment. When I walked back to the squad under the Cessna wing, The mood there was decidedly different. I went right up to the chapter president, and I told him. " I dont care how unsuccessful you guys thought this event was, and I dont care if you have only one kid come next time..you call me, Ill come and fly , cause nothing pays better than this." They of course were all smiling now, in a much better mood.

I fly young eagles now with several chapters, and never miss one. How often does a fella get a chance to make a difference in a strangers kids life so effectively, and how much is it worth? It does not happen of course every time..and you cant tell what effect you have on them always, but when you can see it..its worth more than gold. Flying young eagles can be a Heck of alot more than giving airplane rides, you are setting an example.
D. Gherardini
Central Illinois
RV9A slider 0-320 carbed


Garmin Aera 660 Software V3.40 Available 1/31/19 ...g3xpert

Aera 660 software version 3.40 is now available. As always, the Aera software update is free and can be easily downloaded on your Aera 660 when connected to wifi. Here are a few highlights from the new V3.40 software:

On the airport runway review tab, the Aera 660 will now show you headwind and crosswind components for the selected runway. The preferred runway will be highlighted green.  continue


First Start After Sitting A Year. . . Ideas?

My Lycoming O-360 has been sitting for a year while the airplane has undergone a complete panel and electrical system upgrade. Soon I’ll be starting the engine, and I have concerns about scuffing the cam lobes while waiting for oil to make its way to the top of the engine. I’ve always been told that this startup wear, particularly on what is probably a very dry cam, is responsible for a tremendous amount of overall engine wear.

In trying to come up with a way to mitigate the problem, my friend wondered out loud why I couldn’t just fill the case to the top with oil (through the breather), submerging the cam. Then drain it all out, pull the engine through by hand to insure no hydro lock issues, refill the case to the normal level and start’r up.

It sounded kind of crazy at first, but after giving it some thought, I can’t see why it wouldn’t work. I figure I must be missing something, and thought I’d run it by you guys. What do you think?

If you think its a good idea, I wonder how many gallons of oil it would take to make it to the top. Also, couldn’t you use cheaper automotive oil, since it’s going to be drained out anyway?

Thanks in advance for your input!



January 31, 2019.  Issue #4,750

300+....The Jacket ...turbo RV-6A

"...getting this jacket was a great surprise. coming in handy this winter in florida. we have also been flying kids in operation 300. this is for kids who have lost a parent during military service. these have been some of the best flights in my rv." :^)


Status Report ...KazooRV-9A

Hard to believe it's been 10 months since my last post. Here's a current photo of the Fuse. I've been working on the Canopy since early December, it's as difficult as many of the threads describe. Mostly trail and error to fit the bubble on the frame and meet the desired fit to the fuselage. I was ready to just go open cockpit, but a friend came over one day and we somehow got things fitted. (The windscreen is just sitting on the front).  continue


Avoiding confusion

Recently I've redone my checklists. The plane was first flown in 2012 and as time has passed I found I had many little checklist tucked away in the nooks and crannies around the cockpit. This past week I spent some time consolidating them into three 5X11 inch laminated cards. All my information is now handily located on the front or back of these 3 cards.

Here's the point of this post. Once when I was ready to head home from the Petit Jean Fly-in in Arkansas, I had my primary GPS unit go belly up. The little bit of checking and messing with it I could do sitting there ready to takeoff didn't yield any good results. I had the back up nexus tablet up and running so no issues there and I blasted off for home. After taking off I began to think of how the loss of the device would affect my flight. My mind went blank!!! Here's what I did about it. While sitting at home drinking coffee with all the time I needed and no stress of flying a plane, I went through each device in the plane and tried to write a summary of each. What information I was getting from each device, (and what information I would lose in event of failure of that particular device), where the device got that information from and in the event of a failure exactly what to do about it.

I'm VFR only so this was pretty simple. The interesting thing was the human factor that come into play. This was no emergency at all but my mind in the middle of it could not organize the information. GPS/autopilot/wifi/bluetooth/dual antenna.... it all began to run together and created confusion in my head. Eventually I found the best things was to ignore it and use the nexus. I did get bummed about the thought of hand flying the 450 miles home.... (what did I ever do before I had an AP)??? I did figure out the autopilot would still work in heading and altitude modes.

By the way, it turns out the only thing wrong with my primary GPS device was some corrosion on one end of the fuse so that's why it wasn't blown and still didn't work when reinstalled.
Paul Gray
Foley, Alabama


RV-10 Shot ...Electrogunner


Panel Progress ...ssokol

Got the newly cut and coated blanks (I ordered an extra one for a table-top demo) on Friday. Here's a shot of one with the switches installed:

I already had the Carling rocker switches with the custom covers, so I decided to just push ahead with them. Probably not as good or as small as the locking switches, but they were paid for and they should do the job. I think they look pretty good.

The cut-out on the far right is for the breaker panel. Decided to stay semi old-school and use standard Klixon breakers. The airplane already has 17 which are in good shape, so rather than trying to go in a new direction I just expanded it a bit. The new breaker panel will mount from behind so if I ever want to remove the panel I can do so without disconnecting all those breakers. Just take out the screws and pull the main panel away.

I should have new mounts for the iPads soon. I designed a new low-profile mount that won't take up too much space and will make it easy to mount the "knobs and buttons" bar at the bottom.

If you're going to be at Copperstate in Buckeye AZ next weekend, look me up. I'll be in the exhibit tent. I plan to have the demo system set up and running.


Don't Make My Mistake ...Bill Boyd

See this fancy drag-reducing closeout of the outboard end rib on my right flap? I did them on the inboard side as well. Before trimming the flap to fit the fuse. Without realizing the inboard end isn't exposed to the slipstream when the flaps are up.

It's all getting ground away to make room for flap fitment to fuselage. :^(


Status Report #10 ...romanov

...many pics.


Mothership Stats:


The End of the Great Program ...Vlad

The program is discontinued. I managed to stamp over a dozen of airports in South Carolina. I will keep the booklet who knows maybe in 10 years it will be running again. :^)


Jan/Feb '19 Safety Briefing Issue is Online ...40pg PDF



January 30, 2019.  Issue #4,749

And so begins the 16th Condition Inspection...

...at Richmond Aircraft Service (Monkey's).  Looking like this might be the year of hose replacements.



Getting my RV Grin ...Brian RV-4

Here's one way to get the RV grin. It was an especially nice day for flying upside down.


Thanks ...first post update

Thanks for the welcome everyone. It’s encouraging to know that there’s so much support available to help with the build. And with very little “small” airplane experience, it has been great to have some folks helping me learn to flare a little lower than 30’ and teach me what a magneto does. Anyone wanting to visit CYQA, just let me know your plans. If I’m not on the other side of the planet working, I’ll happily meet-and-greet any fellow RVers. It’s even a port of entry for any Americans who want to take a quick trip across the border. I’m excited to be part of the RV club.
RV-3A bought
RV-8 building


RV7-A model: Access to torque landing gear mount hardware

Looking ahead in the plans, us -A builder eventually need to install the WD-721 landing gear mounts against the F-704 center section bulkhead with bolts on the top and bottom of the mounts. Once the bottom skin is riveted on, getting good access to those bottom nuts will be challenging:

I will be able to get a long skinny wrench down there, but not any torque wrench I've seen. Before I button these bottom skins up, is there anything I can do to make this task less of a P.I.T.A. later? Is it acceptable to measure/set the torque on the bolt sides instead of the nuts for these?

I decided to install the F-663 control column mounts to the bulkhead before riveting the skin for this reason. But I don't think it would be possible (or wise) to install the gear mounts early too.
Ryan Drake
Livermore, CA


RV-8 - #83674 - N8SA ...update

I am building a RV-8 and have reserved the tail number 8SA. I have been documenting the build so far in time lapse video on YouTube. The Horizontal Stab and Vertical Stab videos are just the time lapse video, however moving forward I intend to try and make the videos a little more interactive and informative for those that wish to follow along in my build. This is the first plane I've build and have so far learned a ton, with plenty more mistakes to go, I'm sure!

Sean A.
RV-8 -- N8SA



January 29, 2019.  Issue #4,748

The importance of Pie Insurance ...Capt. Sandy

Aviation Tales for Cold Winter Days, part two, where Jim continues his story, and the importance of Pie Insurance comes home:

....Past the playground and the fuel pump, a fellow in a brown flight jacket slide open a hangar door and pulled out a navy blue bi-plane. A young couple stood nearby, waiting for the ride of their lives. They’d see the sparkling waters of Puget Sound and the jagged peaks of the Olympics from a vantage very few get to see. Their flight would be thrilling, and I hoped for them, joyous. But it wouldn’t be even half the joy Roy and I, and others of our aviation tribe experience. It wouldn’t have the same joy, because their flight doesn’t carry with it the hours spent in a airplane hangar pounding rivets, or studying weather and courses or learning how to look up that one radio frequency you can’t find to get an IFR pop-up when you’re going to be in the clouds like it or not...


Moxie Gets Her Wings ...petehowell

You might have heard there is an Alberta Clipper headed towards the midwest. You have heard correctly..... Bad today and getting worse. -27degF on Tuesday and Weds nights. We just had -6 this morning, but no wind and lots of sun. Flight time!!!


-3B Status Update ...David_Paule

The strip for the Mil-Spec quarter-turn fasteners for the top of the cowling now has a pattern, not shown. I had a bit of aluminum for that, but it’s one inch too narrow, since I need to allow for the semi-conical shape of the thing. New piece on order.

Next, I figured that this was a good time to make a pattern for the baggage floor. The piece of aluminum supplied with the kit has a curious shape, and the cut-outs for the flap torque tube arms looked large to me. That plus Ironflight’s comment about needing to make a pattern for his, all combined to say make a pattern. Don’t just start cutting.

And a good thing I listened, too. I found some white poster board at the hardware store and dove in. Immediately, it was apparent that there was no way it would fit into the baggage compartment as a single piece of card stock. I cut it in half. It was then difficult to put each piece in by itself, but eventually, I got both sides trimmed. And more card stock taped on, and trimmed again. Kind of fun, working that way, but then elementary school subjects sometimes are.

When I finally got both pieces in together, and taped back together, the difficulty of putting the pattern in or removing it returned. And what about the final skin?

I temporarily installed the flap torque arm assembly and marked, generously, lines around the arms. After removing that frame and the pattern, I then laid out the cut-out from the plans. You know, it’s a better fit than I’d thought. But a tweak here and another there, and I was able to refine the cut-out somewhat. And, remember this, it was now easy to get the pattern in and out. While it might be wishful thinking, maybe the baggage floor will go in readily, too.

Here’s a pic of the pattern in place, but not the flap actuator tube. At the bottom cut-out, you can just see the plans version of the cut-out at the aft end of the hole. Yes, there's plenty of room for working at the pushrod.

I’ll probably do some additional minor trimming before I cut metal.

On the far right, you can see that the halves of the bulkhead top are unconnected. The splice plate is under that bit of blue tape. That'll be part of the aft tailcone skin project, by and by.


Mystery Nutplates and Other Holes ...iamtheari RV-14

I'm nearing the end of the fuselage kit of my RV-14, and I've also been working on the finishing kit. I don't have the wings yet. I'm saving those for last. Along the way, I've run into a couple mysteries and I'm wondering if anyone knows the answers.

Mystery 1: On page 10-12 while building the tailcone, there are two K1000-08D nutplates installed on the top flange of the F-01406B bulkhead. The F-01406F baggage bulkhead corrugation covers this area up in section 42. In between those points, I haven't found where anything gets screwed into these nutplates.

Mystery 2: The left side of the flap motor cover (part F-01445B-L) has two openings along the aft edge. What is their purpose?

The two that are in focus, with their rivets half-painted. (Note that I added two nutplates to the battery angles for a different reason. I'm talking about the two that are actually called for in the plans, on the upper flange of that bulkhead.)  ...


Alternator Question ...KRviator

Following on from Dan's issues - and rather than start a new thread - I thought I'd seek the collective help of the VAF Brains Trust on a nearly identical issue.

For the last 20 or so hours, I have been trying to work out what is causing my alternator to be constantly hunting in output. The alternator is a single PlanePower FS-14B, one of those internally-regulated ones that mounts on the vacuum pad.

From my "Running a tank dry" video, it also shows the problem I'm having, with the voltage and amperage fluctuating between 14.5-14.8V and 8-16 amps.

I flew again today after running a series of resistance checks on the B-lead connections, the master contactor connections and amp shunt fittings, all were secure and no variation to the resistance was shown during the tug tests. I'd previously removed the 3-pin plug and noted a small amount of corrosion on one of the female pins, though nothing I'd class as troubling. Today, I removed the 3-pin plug and also removed the 2 female pins from the housing, and squeezed them down slightly before reinstalling it. Next step is to replace the plug and pins in their entirety.

Of note, when the battery is low, ie for the first 10-20 minutes of flight, there are no problems, it charges normally and indications are rock-steady. When the problem manifests itself, turning the alternator OFF drops the indicated amperage to 0 and battery volts to around 13.5-14.0 as you'd expect. Reselecting the alternator several minutes later shows normal charging until the current drops, then the problem recurs.

From what I've done so far, I figure:•I don't have any loose fittings (the only one left to check is the Alt Field pin onthe VPX-end socket)
•The problem is 'actual', not an 'instrumentation' problem.
•The problem is internal to the PP alternator
•The problem is not vibration-related as it is too regular in its' cycling.
I can't see a problem doing so, but rather than replacing the alternator, is there any reason I can't install a separate external voltage-regulator in addition to the internal one in the PP unit?

So...Does anyone have any ideas?



I found a nice page listing all the Wx abbreviations, descriptions, phenomena, could types, etc.  I added the link to the Wx page next to the word METAR in the upper right corner.



January 28, 2019.  Issue #4,747

Sterling @ Van's.  Camping pic. (enlarge)

RV-8 and the Endless Cloud ...Steve Rush RV-8 (10min vid)

1/14/19 was a really nice day, at least in my corner of the world. Unfortunately, virtually everywhere I wanted to go was under a solid blanket of clouds. Anyway, it looked a lot like this.


Just some weekend fourship fun ...fl-mike

Taken from the backseat of Randy's 8 (#2) last Saturday (19 Jan). For all our frozen RV brothers up north!  Harvey lead (8), Randy #2 (8), me #3 (6A), Lonn #4 (8). Gotta get my 8 done!


APRS Art/Geometry ...Vlad the amazing.

Once upon a time a good friend of mine from far away topped me off around Hanukkah. He asked me to draw something big <g>.  On a weekend I went up, got a squawk and settled myself between 7 and 9 thousand feet. Over four hours and three controllers later I was still up there above the deck, listening to music, contemplating about life and giving PIREP to a rare flyer who ventured to punch through the thin layer. I didn't finish the silhuette the fuel was running low. I promised my buddy to try again next year.

The plan.

The actual.


I'm Back

Hello VAF'ers, Some may remember me from the 08/09 era. I built and flew a -8. Great airplane by the way. In the 9 plus years I have been away, I've helped several friends finish up and paint their RV projects. I have purchased a 7A Tip up kit from a friend that started it around 06, and never finished. I have already converted it to tailwheel and now working on the slider canopy conversion, Just wanted to re-introduce myself and say I was back in the RV business. Really glad to be back.

Bill Woods


RV-Lancair Brotherhood Day ...snopercod

Rutherfordton. The Brotherhood had a last-minute fly-out to Rutherfordton [KFQD] for lunch today. The gusty winds beat the stuffing out of us and we reported moderate turbulence to ATC. The lunch at 57A was good, though, and it was great to see Steve's Suburu-powered RV-8 again. Man, his plane sure sounds awesome in the pattern.


And this is why you do condition inspections...Mark Dickens

My relatively new (< 2 years old and about 120 hours of use) Sensenich ground adjustable prop surprised me this morning when I was inspecting it as a part of the condition inspection:


2017 Vans RV-8, Tullahoma, 30Dec18 ...PHOTO01

Had a great time in December getting some neat photos of a good friend's RV-8 in Tennessee


RV-10 Build Status Report ...tforster100

Well thanks to Brandon in nearby Denton I’ve got a headstart on my build already. Just bought his mostly done empennage kit. We are working on the tailcone and I’m learning a lot. Got a lesson on deburring, drilling, clecoes, and riveting. Even made my first accidental smiley face today, at least it was on a practice piece. Thanks Brandon.


9A Status Report ...dwranda

James Cowl Update.  Here's a few pics of the progress. I still have work to do on it, but it's coming along. It was pretty cool to see it on the plane and to be able to open the oil door and take out the dip stick.



January 25, 2019.  Issue #4,746
  It's time for the commercial rating checkride.  Are there any DPE RV fans out there semi-close to me that needs a customer?  Have RV.  Will travel.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend. 

Clay R. RV-9A (flying since '04).  ClayR_9A in the forums...
dr pic from I don't even remember when...at least a decade ago.

Practice in 'The System'

Yesterday I went for gas up in Sherman and thought I'd flex the brain a bit (not saying much).  Filed IFR using FltPlan.com and tested out the import into Garmin Pilot feature for the first time.  Seemed to work fine.  IFR out of a non-towered field into a non-towered field, and back out of a non-towered field equal sign time on the phone.  I bet this was so much more a pain in the arse before cell phones bluetoothing into headsets became a thing.

Got some time in the system, the ILS RWY 16L at KAFW, got steered around some conflicts, cancelled IFR at missed and back over to 52F for lunch.  Then home and work. 


A good morning to practice perishable skills.  Getting vectored around some heavies was kinda fun.  Behind a FedEX Airbus for a bit on the approach.


Testing - Wheel pants or not?

Q: I did all my flight testing of our RV-7A with my wheel pants off; standard practice in Minnesota in the winter. Come spring, wheel pants back on, and retesting WOT, I found significant difference in max RPM and airspeed from my no-wheel pants testing. In reviewing the new FAA Test Flight cards, where they go into such detail as where CG should be, and how much fuel to carry, for each test, a question occurred to me.

Relative to Vx, Vy and best glide testing, would they change, depending on wheel pants or no wheel pants?

If so, I will want to retest, this time with wheel pants on. I may even retest anyway, following the FAA Test Flight instructions, just to confirm my earlier results.

A: (Raymo) The drag imposed by the exposed landing gear is significant and would affect glide speed and distance.  I gained around 20 MPH after installation of mine. Everything got better, including CHTs.


Hi-Res RV-10 Pic Request ...rdrcrmatt

(oren_rakach request)  "Here's one of ours that just came out of paint."


Help for a TALL pilot ...new guy chimes in.

Good afternoon. This is my first post.... I'm very interested in the rv-14, but I have a problem. I'm 6'6'' with a 35'' inseam. Half the people I talk to say no problem, the other half say no way. Would love to be able to "try one on". I'm in central Florida. At the very least, I would like your opinions. Thanks in advance.

I am 6'5 w/ 36" inseam and I built my RV-9 to fit me. I have no issues. Seems like a RV-14 would be even better height wise and mostly width wise.

Micheal, I am 6’3 and 200 lbs with a 99th percentile sitting height. Small aircraft have always been an issue with my head hitting the canopy. I got the opportunity to sit in an RV7/8/10/ and 14. The 7 was too short in either seat (head pressed into the canopy). The 8 was good in the front seat but impossible in the rear seat. The 10 was ok, but with the headset on it was occasionally touching the cieling. In the 14 I had no contact between by head and the canopy except in low G maneuvers, but that was likely due to the loose seatbelt. Not saying you will be the same, but hopefully this helps.

I am 6'4", 32 -34 inseam with an RV9a I built with almost 14 mod, rudder pedals moved forward and have plenty of room. The RV14 will not be an issue.

Mentioning inseam means you are more concern about leg room than head.
I am 6’3”, tall in the torso. I sit on 4” of Medium dense foam that compresses down to 2”, 3” of back foam, Bose headset, geezer accordion sun shade above head. All this leaves me with about 1” between headset and shade.
I wear 31” inseam pants and thinking of bring the pedals 1” closer. Plenty of leg
room available.
I say 6’6’ should be no issue

Hey Tall Guy,,, I’m tall too,
,,,added this bar to recline my seat (-8A) and it’s helped a lot. Also, using a thin high density foam seat cushion with an Air Hawk air cushion on top of that-just right. I’m 6’3” and on the larger side. The -8A fits great.

I’m am building an RV-14 and wondered the same thing. I flew in a local RV-14A and had no issues with leg or head room. I’m 6’-6” 36” inseam and weigh 250#. You should have no trouble at all.

I’m 6’4” 210lbs 36” in seam, I fly a -6 with almost a -14 mod, I fit quite well.


Pic from Mr. X

June Mountain Ski Resort



January 24, 2019.  Issue #4,745
  It's time for the commercial rating checkride.  Are there any DPE RV fans out there semi-close to me that needs a customer?  Have RV.  Will travel. 

Parked on Water...Alton Bay is OPEN.

(Jpm757) Can confirm Alton Bay is open and runway is in great shape!


Milestone ...Bill Boyd

A great psychological barrier has been crossed in this build: not only is she on her gear now, but this happened last night. Very visible progress, probably the most there will ever be at one swoop.

Thanks to my son and my daughter's boyfriend for manhandling the expensive and delicate pieces without a mishap.


Yeah, We Understand ;^) ...llavalle RV-12is

I don't recall being this excited by a phone call : Van's just called to get the authorization to charge the credit card & finish crating. The emp kit should be shipped this week or next week!


Panel Finished ...dbaflyer

Been finished for awhile, but these also have the wind screen and dash complete. Running around 7.5 - 8.0 amps


Sebring Underway ...mothership


Installing GDL-82 In Completed RV-8 ...ArlingtonRV

I just completed the installation of a GDL-82 in my 2001 RV-8 (I'm not the builder). The good news, I just completed the validation flight and have all green and got the Incentive Code to apply for the rebate. The bad news, I started all this on December 22nd.

The long span is all my fault and the result of a few things, 1) even though I thought I panned ahead to have everything on hand, I still needed to order a few things, 2) I planned to do it over the holidays so getting the things I forgot took longer than usual to get, and 3) I had no idea where I wanted to mount everything and spent a lot of time working out logistics.

This is simply intended to show what I did. It works, so it is a viable option, but not necessarily the best or only option.

The first consideration that took a lot of time to resolve was where to put the GPS antenna. I have a Garmin GNC 250XL so there is already a GPS antenna on the turtle deck. I considered putting the new one next to and farther aft of the one that is there, but to maintain the 9" minimum, 12" preferred distance between antennas that idea became untenable.

I then considered replacing the 250XL antenna with the GDL-82 antenna and just living without GPS on the 250 XL (I have an Aera 660 and an iPad running Fore Flight), but I didn't really like that idea. I also considered replacing the 250 XL antenna with the GDL antenna (they use the same hole pattern) and using it to provide GPS data for both units using a splitter. The problem there was more wires to run, another piece to mount and another $300. I ended up using the antenna shelf from the RV-12 (current part number F-01201R-1) on the firewall and mounting it there. When complete, it looked a lot like this: 


Aerosport Products Website Update

Hello all. If you have been trying to open the Aerosport Products website within the last 48 hours and have not been able to, it's because we were in the process of launching our new website!!! The new site is LIVE and we would love for you to check it out.



January 23, 2019.  Issue #4,744
  It's time for the commercial rating checkride.  Are there any DPE RV fans out there semi-close to me that needs a customer?  Have RV.  Will travel. 

748PK is a bodacious RV-9A aero-plane

OK builders, it’s true. Do something on the project every day (in my case, days per thing is the practical unit of measurement) and eventually you really can’t think of anything else that needs to be done before calling in the DAR.

No squawks from the inspection and paperwork in order…748PK is an airplane as of Monday January 21st, 2019. Ordered the emp kit December 26, 2005 and went ultra-slow build all the way, partially dictated by sending two kids thru college in the intervening years.

Had the privilege of introducing myself to Ironflight, who was the speaker at EAA Chapter 663’s annual dinner, on Saturday night. Our chapter VP told Paul to give me his best advice ahead of the upcoming inspection, and he said, “Jam nuts! Vic Syracuse is on an absolute tear….” Happy to report they were all snug and striped when I checked (again) Sunday night!

Kurt Haller
P-town, CA (10 min from KLVK!)
N748PK, RV-9A
Airworthy as of 21 January 2019


Retirement at Cleaveland Tool

For 24 out of our 26 years at Cleaveland Tool, Marshall McDowell has been pumping out tools that change the lives of builders around the world. He is retiring this week and I thought it would be fun to solicit comments from users of his work. Annette and I get to hear it from customers on the phone and at Oshkosh, but please consider passing on a message right to him to show your appreciation of top quality dimple dies, squeezers, edge formers. We hired Marshall in 1994 from a jewel cutter, knowing if he could see facets on a stone he would work well with the details we needed. Since he has trained the half dozen people that currently do the same (including another jeweler). Happy camping Marshall!

(I will pass on comments from here next Tuesday)
Thank you all!


Self Portrait ...Ken W.


Why not more Nord-Lock washers?

I've been wondering for some time why Nord-lock type washers are not used on our birds. They have a neat design that uses tension in the washer to rather than friction in the locking nut to provide the locking action. They are touted to be particularly good in high vibration environments. Interesting video here

I finally came across a set in my Matco brakes; the AN4 bolts that hold the pad opposite the plunger have Nord-like type washers. It's a bolt into a blind hole, so safety wire or Nord-locks are the only way to secure them.

My question to the VAF brain trust: Why aren't these washers used more frequently? On my IO-360, all the bolts use the ancient star washers as "lock washers." It sure seems they get smashed down pretty flat after one use. Is it the price?, love of pre Wright bro's technology, or some other reason(s)?


RV-10 Family Affair ...Rhome, TX

After 17 years of thinking about building an airplane my RV-10 kit is on the way!

Project has come full circle from the RV to Lancair to Glasair to Lancair to RV. Originally wanted the RV as it is based on proven and time honored construction, went to Lancair for the 4 passenger capacity, to Glasair for the cost and speed, back to Lancair for the capacity and finally to the RV for the proven construction and 4 passenger capacity.

When my wife and I first started talking about it she was not only supportive but excited, even after telling her we would need to buy some tools. All she was concerned about was being able to help with the process. She also advised that if we were going to turn the shop into an airplane factory we would have to clean it up and get organized.

While waiting on the kit, we ordered the practice kit, talked with a couple of builders and started practicing. She says it is a lot like sewing; pinning your patterns together and then sewing them up, albeit with a few more steps and precision.

Riveting seems very simple and easy with an experienced builder by your side but the rubber hits the road when you are on your own. Sure glad we are making as many mistakes as possible on the practice pieces! This morning we decided to practice drilling out rivets and after several ovaled huge holes and finally discovered the best way for us and successfully drilled out quite a few rivets.


Mothership Reminder....


TV antenna for VOR

Can anyone tell me why using an old set of rabbit ears (set to 26" or so) wont work for a VOR/LOC/GS antenna (under canopy install)? Ham guys tell me that using the 75-300Ohm balun is fine for 50ohm coax work (and it has the freq range)....



January 22, 2019.  Issue #4,743
  It's time for the commercial rating checkride.  Any DPE RV fans out there semi-close to me that needs a customer? 
  Have RV.  Will travel. 

Kids in an RV ...always a news item.


RV4 Whirligig

I thought you guys might get a kick out of this project. This is a wind-driven whirligig of two RV4s in formation. It is made mostly of wood with some help from my trusty 3D printer.  more

video in use...


Stuck Installing HS-01231C

I am at the step on the Horizontal Stabilator where I finished cleco'ing the skins to the skeleton and before riveting, I am supposed to cleco and then final drill the HS-01231C's. If you look at the attached picture, I have cleco'ed it in one corner and I have pointed out where the other three holes on the long edge aren't lining up. I tried turning it, checked all four and same problem. Has anyone else seen this?


In-flight Self Portrait ...bhester 7A


Status Report ...mbishop (Tampa)

Getting the rear spar ready to be riveted on.



"We are horrible with documentation but here is the web site with pictures.  We just went through a progress inspection yesterday to make sure we are building it correctly and it came out with flying colors! Since we are new at it we just hired someone with vast experience to inspect periodically what we are building.
Build on! Larry"


Interior Update ...Justin RV-10

Okay drove my last rivet today, finished up my interior clean and got everything to take pictures of her. Here are a few new panel pictures. More pictures on the build log.


The New Taxiway Signs

...have been installed at my home field (52F).  Just FYI and thought you'd like to see the airport getting some love.




January 21, 2019.  Issue #4,742

What a perfect day looks like ...1flyingyogi

This was from a few weeks ago on a gorgeous Southern California day after the rains cleared away all the smog/ haze that's typically in the LA basin. We woke up to brilliant blue skies, scattered with fluffy white clouds. I wanted to go flying. My wife wanted to go hiking. I said, why not do both? So we did! But not before I went up first by myself to do one of my favorite things


Cyl #1 50F cold

Need ideas, #1 CHT has always been significantly colder. Facts:
1-New 0320x150HP with perfect compression (180 hr)
2-Swap #1 TC with any other cylinder and the cold reading follows #1TC.
3-Replace #1 TC with new Alcor, still cold when flying.
4-Test all 4 TC in boiling water it reads 212F.
5-Used one TC in boiling water applied to all 4 panel inputs. All read 212F.
6-Installed a little deflector on #1 like #2 has from Vans baffle plans, no joy.
My concern with blocking #1 more radically to get a response is “What if the above is somehow flawed. Don’t want to cook a cylinder.
I noticed a Dave Anders pic with #1 cyl wrapped nearly to the top af the fins. OK, but why isn’t everyones #1 grossly colder ?

Ideas appreciated...Larry
Larry DeCamp


Jcarne RV-7A Status Report

Time to get my rivet on!  I started with the inboard ribs.


Michael Henning Alton Bay Update

Alton Bay has 12” of ice. Runway has been plowed. Need a state inspection. Should be open after Sunday’s storm is cleared out.


Little Copilot (Germany....different chute requirements)

Here is a short video with my copilot - enjoy.


Look who's on the cover of Sport Aerobatics! ...ronshchreck

I'm going to toot Jerry Esquenazi's horn a bit. Getting your plane on the cover of Sport Aerobatics just means you have a beautiful airplane. Winning the Sportsman Regional Champion position in TWO IAC regions means you know how to fly the wings off that beautiful airplane.

Jerry took top honors in the Northeast region in 2018 with an overall average score of 82.92 percent! He also took top honors in the Southeast region with a mind-blowing overall score of 83.83 percent! By the way, second place honors in the Southeast region went to our own Randy King, flying his RV-8.

Jerry will be stepping up to the Intermediate category in 2019 just to give me a hard time. All you Sportsman competitors can take a breather.


dtw_rv6 Rebuilt Snorkel Flange

I just rebuilt the flange on my inlet snorkel after ten years of service. It was never flat when new - I slathered on some silicone and bolted it on.

So I cleaned up the flange and here is the result:

I call this a reverse layup:
Clean flat sheet of glass.
One layer of dry peel ply
Two wetted laters of bid
A thick layer of peanut butter like micro ballons
Wet the face of the old snorkel flange with epoxy , then press it into the goo and wait overnight to clean it all up.

This baby is flat!


Welcome Aboard RV-14 N508KB

I arrived home from flying the big nose-dragger at the day job to find this box full of our future tail-dragger. The contents have been moved to the warmth of our small shop and the inventory begins while the snow falls. I have no idea what I’m doing, but I sure am learning.


Long build 6A (England)

Well today saw another mile stone in the build of my RV6a.
The story started back in 1997 on a flight back to the UK from Florida. As a bit of in flight entertainment I had picked up a copy of Kit Planes for the journey. There were some stunning pictures of a bright yellow RV8 on the cover and in the article. This was the start of the itch and having convinced the better half about a year later I ordered a RV6 empanage kit . The build started but as usual kids work and a year out to build a bigger garage to put it in have all taken toll.
There has never been a dead line as there are already too many and this is a hobby, after years of leg pulling I could put it off no more .With very few jobs left to complete in the garage the RV6a saw the light of day for the journey to the airfield for final assembly and the 90% of jobs to do .
Life has changed recently so fewer dead lines and time to push the RV to the front .I now have a very firm dead line of a bit less than 12 months to complete.
Today saw the start of the smile but the GRIN is still to come .

PS Already had a hangar mate giving me stick for the training wheel at the front


kentlik 7A Rebirthing Update

I am diving into the duplex Andair valve today if I can skirt around my Julianne's to do list a little...haha


David Paule RV-3B Update

Russell sent me a photo showing how he’s attaching the forward top skin to the sides. He’s installed an angle, riveted to the top longeron, for the top skin to attach to. I understand this is how the Rocket does it. He could have done much the same thing by insetting a strip partly in between the skin and the top longeron. As I mentioned, I’m overlapping the sides per the plans, and am not using an attachment strip or angle. Here’s Russell’s method.



January 18, 2019.  Issue #4,741

A Lip Locker With a Side of Oriental Fries

It was short notice and the window was tight.  And it was bumpy for a lot of the flying.  CRUMMMMMY weather rolls into DFW this weekend, so some of the usual suspects decided Thursday last minute to RVate down to Waco 30 minutes south for a Lip Locker and oriental fries at Kitok Restaurant.  It's just about perfect on the dive scale if you get the chance to visit.  My friend of 40 years Danny Gibbs picked us up at the airport so no courtesy car was needed.  Thank you fine folks at Texas Aero for letting us leave our planes on your ramp for free.

Seven full size pics start HERE, but here are some highlights (captions at the link)...

4-ship overhead break with tower's permission.  RWY1

While at the table at Kitok Danny said, "That policeman eating over there is Frank Gentsch."  Danny graduated High School with Officer Gentsch.  I graduated with his younger brother.  Small world.  Officer Gentsch was shot in the line of duty 35 years ago age 20 when he first joined the force (story).  He's still on the force, with a bullet lodged near his kidney.  He's Assistant Chief now.  Dedication.

1.2 logged, some formation, two meals worth of food at one sitting and some laughs.  Got to fly before the 25*F temps arrive.  Good times.

Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.


Panel Status ...CJ in EP

Garmin G3X Day/Night VFR Panel - RV-9A

Exciting progress in the shop last night, got the panel mounted and most of the harnesses secured. Still a lot to complete before I can really turn the system on, but the back up battery at least let me turn the screens on to play for a little while.

A few pictures of the panel, installation of the remote components on the sub panel, and the harnesses:  continue


Rust on Gear Leg ...snoopyflys

Hi All,
Hoping to get some good advice for solving my latest issue. My installed main gear legs have developed "rust freckles". Both have been installed for about 4 years (really slow build) and both have the original powder coating as received from Vans. I suspect with some of the wild temp and humidity swings has caused condensation to settle on the gear thereby making the rust freckles. So, given they are installed, can I sand down the powder coating, clean, prime and paint. Or should I consider removing them and having them stripped and re-powder coated?


RV-7A Rebirthing Status ...kentlik

So I got the brakes lines installed and flared but not sure about the lower one might cut the flare off and shorten it a bit to get it parallel with the above line.

My inner "Monk" is screaming at me. I didn't notice it was not in harmony with the other line until I saw this pic. Will think about that...not that the top line is perpendicular to the bottom skin anyway.


Proud!! ...HansLab RV-12

Never been so proud as I took my firstborn out of the hospital!

Just have a look at this beauty: MGL 10" screens, MGL 8.33 radio, Trig transponder, MGL ECB's. It all works like a charm! In the tunnel you'll see a Matco parking brake. Trim switches in the stick grips. I followed this very forum in many iterations: you can see a headset hanging on one. Furthermore I added a computer fan to the restrictor (build underneath the panel, PAX-side), and microswitches for flaps, open canopy, trim and wing security.

Finally put the upholstery in yesterday - wow. looks more and more like e real touring plane to me, now.


Countersink Mod ...RV10Pilot


RV-14 Panel Status ...rwthompson67


Expercraft Website T.U.

This morning on the Expercraft site - RIP Expercraft.

"In November of 2007 I launched ExperCraft to the public. It started out as a completely free service and evolved into a voluntary pay system for what proved to be a very useful tool for many builders and restorers of aircraft.

My aspirations were to generate revenue by advertising relevant products to builders who need them, while providing a tool to make building and tracking your aircraft project easier and more enjoyable and automatically publishing an easy to share web site.   continue



January 17, 2019.  Issue #4,740

Gas Run Pic a Coupla Days Back

...$3.35 at KSWI.  Pretty amazing the quality you can get these days with a smartphone.  Usual suspects on the wing (they weren't as close as the cropped pic suggests).  Freakishly smooth air...



RE: IAC Known Sequences for '19 ...Brian RV-4

Thanks Ron! It looks like a fun sequence. Can't wait to try it out this weekend! I kinda like the reverse wedge better (more fun), but I understand that it's more difficult without inverted systems - although I don't have any problems with mine. I just want to keep the negative stuff to 3 seconds or less in duration b/c I'm worried about oil starvation for the engine. Fuel-wise, no problem.

I totally agree with Bill on the snaps. I've recently got some dual time in a Pitts S2B and done about half a dozen of them, but cannot seem to do a decent one in my -4. I just can't get it to break cleanly no matter how hard/ briskly I pull on the stick. I'm sure it's technique, and I haven't figure it out yet. Maybe I can get some input from you guys. I know snaps are not in the Sportsman sequence, but I like to learn new stuff and just have fun (besides flying competition sequences).

Well, look at you! One contest in Primary and you are already practicing Intermediate figures. I'm going to keep my eye on you!

Your -4 is a different beast than my -8 so what works for me may be different in subtle ways. Generally speaking, a snap roll works when one wing is stalled just when the yaw motion is introduced. The sweet spot for my -8 is 100-110 knots upon entry. I suspect it might be lower for the -4 and maybe Bill McLean can chime in here. Snaps work best at a high power setting with plenty of prop wash over the tail so it would be best to slow slightly below your ideal entry speed, add full power and initiate the snap as you get to entry speed. Apply rapid aft elevator to pitch up about 10 to 15 degrees. You should feel about 3.5 Gs in this pitch up. (Full aft stick is NOT required.) Add rudder just as you add back stick. Full rudder position should be reached at the same time the Gs peak at 3.5. This is the point where one wing stalls and the other at high alpha induces a rapid roll into the stalled wing. As soon as this happens you should release the back stick pressure as you don't want both wings to stall. It's OK to add just a bit of aileron into the snap as well. To recover, lead the stop point and apply full opposite rudder as you jab the control stick slightly forward of neutral. The point where you lead the stop point will vary with aircraft so that will come with practice.
More than any other maneuver, the snap procedure is very dependent upon aircraft type, trim, speed and pilot inputs. You made do a hundred before you find the right combination. You will know when you find it. There is no doubt when the inside wing stalls and rapid rotation occurs. You will feel it and hear it and the RV grin is evidence that it really happened!


Panel Porn ...N402RH

I just updated to the new Aerosport switches with graphics in my RV-10. Photo taken last night about 50 miles east of Van's during a software test flight.


New (Jan 2019) Garmin GTR 200B COM Radio with Bluetooth ...g3xpert

Garmin is pleased to announce the GTR 200B panel mount COM radio for experimental and light sport aircraft that offers all the powerful features of the GTR 200 including advanced auto-squelch, 3D audio, stereo intercom, stereo music input, alert inputs, standby frequency monitoring, on-screen frequency identification, 10W of power, 25 kHz tuning, and remote tuning integration with G3X Touch, Garmin portables, and other EFIS systems.

Additionally, the new GTR 200B provides a Bluetooth interface with convenient front panel control that supports telephone/tablet connectivity for communications and music for those using the GTR 200B as their 2 place stereo intercom.

The GTR 200B uses the same rack/wiring as the popular GTR 200, and is a slide-in replacement for those wanting to upgrade.  continue

•All-in-1 radio and stereo intercom solution with standby monitoring and stereo input
•Powerful 10 W Comm with a slim 1.35” tall design and large sunlight-readable display
•Displays facility name and type when tuned to user-defined presets or supplied by compatible portables/G3X™
•Advanced audio panel features including 3D Audio and auto-squelch
•Optional Bluetooth® connectivity enables easy access to phone calls and audio entertainment


Mini iPad Thoughts ...RV-3 Mycool

I'm in the process of rebuilding a Rv3 to Rv3a, Im mounting ipad under the Dynon D-180 with a ram mount, also integrating a Dc connection for charging.


3D Model of RV-10 Panel ...supik

Not real work, just planning for near future ;^)


Counterfeit NGK spark plugs ...Bill R.

While doing some research, I ran across this. You can bet I'll be checking my next batch of spark plugs.



January 16, 2019.  Issue #4,739

Please read if converting from Fixed pitch to Constant Speed prop

...AX-O 1/15/19 Update

Well, it has been a long troubleshooting event. Leading down multiple rabbit holes.

Background info: I removed the engine from the plane to access the firewall for the governor cut out and also to send it in to an engine shop (name held on purpose). As the engine was already at the shop I asked the shop to convert it to constant speed. They said no problem.

Bad Assumption: Everything should be working, they are professionals.

Trouble shooting:
After I did the test with the air on the 90 degree fitting (nose of the engine that gets the governor line), I started researching on VAF and other sites. That lead me down the path of the hole or no hole, NPT plug or not.

in order to confirm the problem, I tried to prove that saying of "insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results".

in this case, I was not insane. The results would differ and were not predictable. Sometimes I would put 40 psi of air in the plug and the prop would move. Sometimes i would cycle the prop a few times with the engine running and it would work. Then it would not work after a certain number of prop cycles. Sometimes it would work if I "double pump" the prop lever is my RMP was at 2200. Seemed like it always failed to cycle at around 170 deg of oil temp. All that took time to diagnose and collect.

I designed a pressure differential tool that would work just like a cylinder compression tool. I would put 40 psi of air in the 90 deg fitting and read the actual pressure in the system. Sometimes the tool would real 22-24 psi and the blades would move; and some times the 40 psi was going straight out of the crank case vent without any prop movement or pressure.

Talked to a local A&P and he said I should instrument the governor to check the pressure. So I contacted the PCU5000 folks for guidance on how much pressure I should see at what governor rpm. They told me that max pressure of 320 psi plus/minus 20 happens as low as 1700 governor rpms. So 1700 times the governor ration of .866 gave me the engine rpm required. at 1600 ish engine rpm i should have a good check of governor pressure and not blow the gauge to the moon. I ran the engine at 1600 rpm and the pressure gauge read 350 psi. I called that good as the calibration on the gauge was not checked for accuracy prior to using. we just knew it work as they A&P uses it to check pressure in the fuel/oil lines he makes. Pics below of the set up. 


Preferred Parking ...kaweeka

Now THAT's preferred parking. Just where a Vans ought to be!  KTRK (Truckee, ca). I just loved the juxtaposition of the mega money jets and my RV, both equally enjoying the Sierra Nevada beauty.


Houston RV Gang: Attention to Brief! ...Philip

Alright, it's getting to be that time again. Who's up for a burger at Hooks?  Let's meet at the usual time, 11:30 AM, this Saturday (1-19), at the Aviator's Grill.


IFR Rating RV Update ...airguy

Update on this thread...

It took a while but I finally got my ticket wet this morning. We've had lots of IFR weather here since my checkride, but most of it was LOW IFR and had icing conditions, so that was a no-go. I've flown a fair bit IFR in VMC since getting the ticket, but this morning was the first chance to fly solo actual with conditions fitting a minimum-experience fresh IFR ticket.

I took off from my home private strip after getting clearance via FSS on cellphone, entered IMC about 30 seconds after takeoff, was in-and-out of the tops enroute, and didn't see the ground again until 700' AGL on the RNAV 25 at KMDD. Perfect conditions for a first-solo actual flight. Now with the weather soon turning warmer and ice becoming less of a threat I should be able to add more actual to the logbook and fine-tune my personal minimums.

Flying with an instructor or safety pilot under the hood, or even solo in VMC, is completely different than solo actual. I expected a little pucker factor the first time I went IMC and it was there, definitely an attention-getter. Huge fun!!


2100 hour Borescope ...petehowell 9A

It's that time again! Just did the 2100 hr oil change and took a peek at the valves. Oil filter and suction screen had some crumbly carbon bits in them, but no metal I could see. The magnet on the filter had a thin film of micro iron stuff that wiped right off.

Compressions were 77/72/78/77. #2 has shown a bit low before, but typically comes back on the next test.

here are the Exhaust Valves I added some "pop" in Google Photos.....



January 15, 2019.  Issue #4,738
So I went to the TCU/BU WBB game in Fort Worth Saturday ($10 general admin) and got a hat sighting (pic).  Thought I was all set for a splash image sometime this week.  Then around 3pm Monday I got a text from a corporate pilot friend currently in the T&C 'for work'.  Pic below....shown as a contrast to Dvalcik's RV-12 landing on a block of ice yesterday ;^).  I was finishing up the insulation/sheetrock repair in the water-damaged closet (pic) when I got the text.  Was going to tape the drywall next, but Tate had to leave for work after school and I wanted to show him how to do it (not like there aren't outstanding videos online showing how to do it better than I ever could).
  My evil plan to get Tate to do the taping for me might not pan out as I had hoped...

(about the charity cap)


AX-O RV-4 Update

Flew the plane yesterday for .6 hrs. Will write something up tonight if I get the chance. The plane is way different to fly. Will need some time to get used to it.

With the limited flight time; the plane feels less maneuverable, heavy on the landing flare but it climbs like a bat out of you know what.


Mothership News

U.S. Sport Aviation Expo Jan 23-26.  Join Van's Aircraft east coast rep Vic Syracuse at the US Sport Aviation Expo this month in Sebring, Florida. The One Week Wonder RV-12iS will also be at the show for all to see! The show runs January 23-26.


RV-6A partner wanted in Wisconsin

I have a 2000 full IFR RV-6A. Only 220 hours on the engine. Just had annual inspection completed. I keep it in a T-hanger at Green Bay airport (Austin Straubel or KGRB) I hope to have a partner with some mechanical ability because I have none! Thanks
Please call or email Chris at 530-2SIX3-22
FOUR9 or savchris 'at' hotmail.com


RV-14 Panel Plans ...infltc2s RV-14


Update on the Crankshaft leak - I have new seals I don't need now ...Triumph1974

Hello Everyone - quick update.

The other week I had the chance to take the prop of the RV7A, and do a good visual inspection around the outside of the crankshaft seal....it was bone dry (other than the little bit of grease I used when installing the seal that was still on the shaft).

Sanding in the Helix per the Continental SB certainly solved the issue.


If you want to ride along in an RV-9A for 17 minutes

...found this new video online.  Go full screen on your monitor and daydream about RVs while enjoying the snow covered mountains and engine noise.  I like videos like this. ;^)  dr


RV-7A rebirthing update ...kentlik

I got back in the garage for a short time today. It was cold. I managed to stuff myself back in the bad boy to do the brake lines. Didn't finish, wanted to watch the Chargers a bit. Also, short a nut for the output bulkhead fitting. Have -6's but no -4's...bummer.


Mr. X Pic

...GG bridge SFO sunrise.  Click to enlarge.



January 14, 2019.  Issue #4,737

Landing at the House on Ice ...Dvalcik

I have been waiting for the right conditions with the ice thick enough. I have flown into Alton Bay multiple times. We live on Branch Lake just outside of Ellsworth Maine, close to Bar Harbor. Today was almost perfect to land on the lake for a photo op of the RV12 in front of the house. Winds calm, sunny and the Temps were – 15 Celsius on the ground (a warm day for Maine.) The ice had very little of any snow and was almost Zamboni quality.

A few pictures of the plane on the ice with the house in the back ground.  ...


Momentary blackout

I've been flying with my G3x and GTN 625 for almost 2 years and enjoying the many features and benefits provided. I keep everything up to date with respect to software and charts. Something interesting happened yesterday after a few practice approaches. While taxiing in, the G3x went black momentarily then re-booted with all frequencies and screens as they were prior to the event. This happened once before exactly as described. Just goes black and immediately reboots back as it was. I never could find a reason and I am stumped still. I checked all connections carefully to be sure. I would hate to be driving an approach to mins and have this happen again. Anyone have a similar experience? Any suggestions?
RV-9A N435KR


Dec '18 Summary ...j-red

Haven't had a lot of time to update the thread in the past month. The engine run was quite a leap forward past all the other tasks that had to be done since first hanging the wings. Going back through my build log, here are some of the highlights...

Empennage tips took a couple of weeks to do. This is an older kit and they were either never formed very well to begin with, or age and heat had caused them to distort, because they had to be cut, squeezed, filled, and overlayed in a bunch of ways in order to get them to fit right. Lots of work, but they turned out nice in my opinion.


KC Flight Formation Clinic

2019 Kansas City Formation Clinic April 26,27,& 28 at (KLXT) Lee's Summit Airport
More Emphasis on advanced formation flying and Large formation Flight. As always new formation pilots training will be geared for their skill level. New information and education on the Updated FAA 8900.1 rules for formation flight in a CoW.To sign up for the clinic go to the DATABASE section of this group and make an entry on the appropriate table. The Fee for the clinic is $80.00 All meals will be provided starting on Friday evening.

Participating pilots should have excellent stick and rudder skills. This clinic is only for RV aircraft. Sorry, no RV-10’- 12s. All aircraft must be in excellent condition. Beginner's aircraft must have dual controls (throttle, stick and rudder), intercom, and PTT in both positions. No vernier throttles allowed! In addition to the normal paperwork required of all aircraft (registration, airworthiness certificate, weight & balance), pilot certificate and current medical, you will need to bring proof of liability insurance. We have arranged a block of 30 hotel rooms under (KC Flight) at Comfort Inn & Suites in Lee's Summit, MO . 3701 NE Ralph Powell Rd. 64064 phone 816-554-6688 Rooms Drop Off the Block Rate on March 26, 2019 make reservations early cancellation 48hrs notice.

We will provide dinner on Friday evening, and lunch and dinner on Saturday. Further detailed information will be posted to this group as it is available.
Experienced pilots who wish to take a check ride to earn an FFI Wingman or Flight Lead card must secure a recommendation for the check ride prior to the clinic and request a check ride through this forum.


Virtual Hangar Entry ...Fhuber

RV-7A N357FD Frank Huber

I purchased my second hand RV-7A quick build kit on March 4, 2011 in Houston, Texas and trucked it back to my garage shop in Maple Grove, Minnesota, with my best friend John. I got things organized and figured out where to start. I started working more regularly after retiring in September of 2012. By June of 2015 it was time to move it to our hangar at KANE, before we downscaled into a fifty-five and older community. Work continued until July of 2018, when I ran out of things to do and my friends verified it was ready for the inspection.  ...

(Related: Same Person) Here is my panel

I have a Skyview touch with both control panels, a D-6 backup, Garmin 650, backup com 760, PS Engineering com control panel, I-Pad mount on right side with a charger and cooling fan built in and a EI Commander to program and monitor the P-Mags. The panel was cut, painted and markings added by Stein Air. The panel was made a bit taller, to allow all the switches to go under the Skyview


RV-10 Status Report ...cderk

Finally got all windows "glued" in. Now to start on the fiberglass work!


Fun with my RV-6A ...terry.mortimore

Had some fun last summer, a local pilot wanted an RV ride. He filmed the affair.


Trim tab alignment ...Girraf (7)

I'll admit that perhaps I overthought this part of the build, but I really wanted to do this just once. I won't bore you with the details of what I found challenging, but here is my final result. The hinge doesn't leave you any room for fore aft movement of the tab if you want any hope of preserving edge distance on those hinge attach rivets. You basically need to drill directly down the centerline of the hinge flange. Overall, I ended up with exactly 3/32 gap on the outboard edge (min distance per the plans, which I can file open slightly), and well matched inboard edge, and the tab itself sits about 1/32" in from the TE of the elevator. Again, due to the hinge edge distance issue, I don't think I had much control over how this ended up. I'm curious if that's a passable result or if I should have done something different to get a perfectly matched TE. Here are some pics. I can always order some new hinge and try again....

Side note: my Wings arrived this weekend!  ...


Falcon Flight Formation Training Clinic - KGYI - 2019

Falcon Flight will be hosting a Formation Training Clinic on April 5/6/7 2019 at the North Texas Regional Airport – KGYI. The weather-out dates will be April 26/27/28. This is a closer location to those coming from the north/east than the ones we’ve held in the past. We have created a group to handle the logistics. Use the link to request membership in this group, then add a line with your information to the Clinic Signup Table.

We will be using this group for all information distribution. Further details regarding scheduling et al are forthcoming and will be disseminated through that group. We’re looking at a cost of $60 per person to cover van rentals, food, drink and other incidentals.

A limit of 32 participants is in place. Newcomers and advanced are welcome. We will also be going over the changes to 8900.1 that apply to carded pilots when operating within a certificate of waiver (airshows).

All hotel information is found in the FILES section of the group. If you have any intent on participating, make sure to get your room booked early before the group rate expires - you can cancel up to 48hrs prior to arrival at no pentaly.


Wiring Technique Request

A: (Mike S) 


Too many dimples in F-01412A Bulkhead?

The plans page 10-07 step 1 called for dimpling the #30 holes in the web of the bulkhead except as indicated in the figure. There are two holes that I don't think should have been dimpled though. In the picture you can see the two dimples behind the edges of the tie-down bracket that is keeping it from laying flush to the bulkhead. Anyone else run into this? Can I just flatten those dimples out?


Article...I Survived a Mid Air Collision

(Not RV) but a scary, interesting read.



January 11, 2019.  Issue #4,736
Wet and windy here in DFW over the weekend.  Yuck.  There was some downtime Wed/Thu and I apologize for that.  Had the ISP on the phone and we are looking at some things possibly causing it - some changes made that I think will help (DB cleanup routine times, backups, etc).  We're monitoring things and might do some more tweaking over the weekend.  Apologies in advance if you try to get in and can't - we might be working on stuff.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.


20 Years in Our RV-4 ...gmrv4 vid


Tech Counselors

Q: I have arranged with a local expert to come help me 'get started'. Well I got antsy and started with out them. I started with he HS, and have stopped where I have a question, and so now I moved on to the VS. I see some folks have recommended to start here anyway.

Thus far I haven't done anything I do not think is reversible or fixable, but before I get to far ahead of my self, at which point do I need to have tech counselors take a look?

I assume before I start riveting skins on would be a good start, but besides if I have question should I have a tech counselor look before then?

A: Yep. Before closing the skin on the first component.


Panel Pic ...DeeCee 57

Ok, here we go: my minimal VFR day only panel... light, simple, and functional

Since I bought the -6 already built, I didn't design the panel. The holes were already there, and I've just spent about 14 days rewiring the headsets, installing a new 8.33KHz COM, a Garmin G5, a GT-50, and a Garrecht AT-1 TAS.
Not shown on the foto, the iPad mini which is affixed by the ball.

Retired from the airlines I prefer to enjoy the outside scenery instead of perusing an acre of glass with zillions of useless stuff on it. And no A/P either


A Pretty Neat Towbar Post From the Past ...rzbill

Due to the holiday week, I have had more "shop time" than usual.

One of the things I have been thinking about was a replacement of my current control lock. This was an idea stolen from a Diamond DA20 I flew some 10 years ago. My initial implementation was OK except the interface to the rudder pedals was a bit light and it popped off once, giving me a dent in the rudder that very very windy day.

So, a few months ago, I saw and picked up a couple of discarded aluminum crutches by the side of the road. Perfect.....

I did a jury rig proof of concept at the hangar and then an evening in the shop to fabricate it to final form.  ...


Mr. X Pic


Daniel's First RV-6 Flight

...end of '18


Flying into Canada without landing ...Jim RV-9A

Q: Say if a guy plans a flight from Port Huron, MI over Canada to Rochester, NY (Niagara Falls area) what things should he be prepared for? Should I file a VFR flight plan or just ask for flight following? but then what? What radio contacts should I be prepared to make once over Canada. Does CA charge a fee? I suppose if I have to make an emergency landing in CA then it would get dicey unless I just do the planning beforehand for the contingency. Advice, comments?

A: Just file a VFR flight plan and away you go. There won't be any charge from Nav Canada. Same deal for us Canadians flying over the US to another Canadian destination. When I file a VFR flight plan from Ottawa to Halifax, I'm assigned a transponder code and automatically get flight following. Each controller will just hand you off to the next one. I wind up talking to:

- Ottawa Terminal
- Montreal Center
- Boston Center
- Moncton Center
- Halifax Terminal

It is all choreographed for you, just change freqs when told, tell them you are there, and that's it. Dead simple.

However, if you need to land, you better have your passport with you and land at a facility with Customs on site if at all possible. Also, you might have to sit around a couple days as I think you will have to file an eAPIS thing to get back into the US, although I could be wrong there on the timing and whether it is required for Americans returning to the US...

A: I've flown that route many times going to and from Oshkosh. As previously offered, always file a VFR flight plan. I've never had to make an uplanned landing in Canada, but I have heard it can be messy. Sometimes I have used flight following. New York or Michigan will seamlessly hand you off to the appropriate Canadian controllers. Very easy.


Some Updates: Brantel RV-10 Blog


Timelapse Aileron Structure Build (Jan 9)

...[ed. I like these type videos.  Benny Hill music always plays in my head. dr]



January 10, 2019.  Issue #4,735

My RV-7 was in an clothing catalog photo shoot ...Gash

An ad agency's models and photographers spent a few hours today with my RV-7 doing a photo shoot for an OGIO ad campaign. We had fun playing with the airplane and motorcycle. When I asked if they wanted me to "photo bomb" one of the pictures, they said absolutely! And of course, I shared the other seat with one of the pretty ladies.  ...


ATC Says, “Altitude Upon Request.” Say what?

So I’ve been using VFR Flight Following more now than any other time in my many years of flying. I try to use it on any trip outside my local area and it’s really been great. ATC is very accommodating and the more I use it the less chance of my stumbling over my words and sounding like the rookie that I am.

So a couple of weeks ago I was on a flight from the SF Bay Area to the Sierra foothills. During my initial call to ATC they asked what altitude I was requesting. I told them 5,500 feet. They told me to fly at or below 5,000 feet and they added something like “5,500 feet upon request.” I hadn’t heard that terminology before.

So I do understand holding me at 5,000 because there were a couple of jets flying overhead for landing at Oakland. So, I waited several minutes until the jet traffic seemed to subside a bit before calling back and asking if I could to go 5,500 feet. This was approved and off I went.

I figure basically he’s saying “yea man, chill at this altitude for a while even though it’s not where you want to be at. At some point hit me up later if you still want to go higher and I’ll check and see if it’s cool or not.” (The controller is from California too.) I’m pretty sure this is what is going on here. If so, I’m thinking I did the right thing by waiting to ask for higher later. I was perfectly fine flying at 5,000 the entire way but that’s not a proper VFR cruising altitude.

My questions are:

1-What exactly does this phraseology mean?

2-Would it have been ok just to stay at 5,000 feet and not request higher? I think being at the proper VFR altitude is safer of course.


Show me your AFP Boost Pump mounts

Q: I did a few searches but came up short on good pictures. I was planning on using two padded hose clamps but wantes to to how everyone else has done it on a 6.

A: Almost Standard Install in 9A with Andair Selector Switch

Here's how it turned out in mine. I used the Andair fuel selector switch instead of the Van's, and being that I have electric elevator trim I bend the flange forward of the switch (where the manual trim knob would be installed) to a 90º and tucked it into the pump housing.

Good Luck!


Hoping this mistake doesn’t equal a new HS Spar

I was trying to punch out a rivet tonight whilst riveting my HS spar together (page 8-6). I was unable to punch it out so slowly started to drill further into the rivet with a #40 and continued to punch it. Still couldn’t get it so I drilled through the whole shaft. Whilst being careful to keep it aligned at the top the drill bit was pushed to the side out the bottom (see photos, first post so I hope they work).

I’ve flicked an email off to Vans but thought I’d throw it on here whilst I wait for their response. Hoping to save my work. The HS-1002 part isn’t on Vans parts list and while it may not be overly expensive the shipping to the East Coast will be a devil.

Also I’ve been having some issues with rivets being hard to push in by hand due the primer. Is it an issue to use a metal object (read hammer) to gentle tap them in (not pounding but they are too tight to push in with hand). Would this cause any damage to the shaft of the rivet, if it will I guess I’ll have to ream the holes.

Thanks for your thoughts.


Mothership News


Stowing Towbar

Q: Those of you that use a towbar, do you travel with it, and if so, have you done anything specific to secure it in the baggage compartment - some type of clamp set up? Would you mind sharing thoughts?

A: Tool Clips.  I installed four 5/8ths-inch tool clips on the floor of my forward baggage compartment. To make it more secure I also installed a lock pin (foreground) through one of the tow bar's existing holes.


Awesome new headset! CQ1 from Card Machine Works

I’ve had the privilege of flying with a new in-the-ear headset for a few months. It was designed after years of frustration with the offerings from the two established in-ear headset manufacturers. The best part is that the CQ1 is manufactured and marketed within the VAF family; Tanya and Scott Card. I’m not sure what CQ stands for, but in my mind it’s Card Quality. Card Machine Works is now a paid advertiser on the site, headsets are now for sale, and I feel like I can out them. I get extremely energized by watching people identify problems and create solutions. It's even better when we all benefit from the results!

I’ve been flying with the CQ1 for a few months. The noise cancelling microphone makes a huge difference in the quality of communication and the speakers have the quality to match. Right after Christmas I made my first IMC approach into the LA area. it was such a relief to have consistent clear communication capability without having to mess with my headset. The kids in the back seat don’t comply with the sterile cockpit rule, so the headset mike has to do double duty filtering out airplane noise and kids excited about arriving at Disneyland. Communication with SoCal approach and the tower was never a problem.

The CQ1 is visually similar to some other offerings, but one touch or a closer inspection reveal the enormous differences. The differences are even more obvious at first use. The frame is more robust and stays where you put it. The cables are high quality with a Kevlar core. The controls are simply amazing! No more finding the tiny sweet spot in the volume knob that allows both speakers to work simultaneously! The mike is fundamental game changer with its noise cancelling capability. It stays EXACTLY where you put it with no spring back. There’s no auxiliary input, that feature is easily addressed by simple adapters and most intercoms and audio panels have wired and / or Bluetooth inputs anyway.

My fear is that this post reads like an advertisement. It’s not; I am however excited about the product and what its creators have done. I like it well enough that we have bought a second CQ1 for my pilot wife. I own two Bose A-20s because they’re quality, they fit the kids, and they will for years. I own a Lightspeed Zulu II which was an expensive failed experiment. Quality is good, but they interfere with sunglasses and hats, and they clamp my dainty ears; a fault they share with the Bose. I have primarily flown with the Quiet Technologies headset because it’s more comfortable than anything that clamps my head. It was also fickle, temperamental, and of mediocre quality. I have tested all 4 headsets back-to-back and Tanya and Scott’s CQ1 offering is the best, hands down.

I find in-the-ear headsets quieter than ANR in RVs, especially when glasses and hats are in the mix to break the seal with my head. I can hear the cancelling feature in ANR headsets and find it tiring and a bit nauseating. There was a post here recently about that, so I'm not the only one. Ear tips and ear plugs are a very personal thing. They also have to be inserted correctly to work. I roll my own using Howard Leight earplugs because they work well for me. I think Card Machine Works have a few other suggestions. I use the same basic plugs for flying, motorcycling, woodworking, machine work, and even at my day job at times. It’s on my list to make a video describing my process. Now that I’ve stated that publicly, maybe I’ll follow through.

Here's a link to their website. There is much more detailed information there. https://cqheadset.com/    ...


Status Report #10 ...romanov

That report is about:
• Aft Fuselage: it's almost the fuselage, in fact it is the fuselage.

After we have made small wing type structures (...four of them), now we have a chance to try our skills on the actual body of the plane. Here is how it looks like:



January 9, 2019.  Issue #4,734

1/8/19 FOD Check

...my home field (52F).  Rob Reece driving the golf cart / me as pax.  Two sets Mark I eyeballs.


Reno 2019 rookie...hopefully

Wheels are turning and gears are in motion at Bear Dog Racing to make the Reno Air Races 2019 for the very first time in our RV-4. First comes Pylon Racing School in June..."Rookie School". When all goes well there, I'll have my Sport Class racing license in hand on Sunday the 9th, then....qualifying in September. Really excited!! Race prop finally being carved this weekend. Need to get going on the 10:1 pistons and intake mod. Feel free to come to the pits and turn a wrench

See y'all in Reno!!!
SARL Race 51
Johnnie Painter
RV-4 O-360 (N92BP)


Panel Critique

Hi all-

I've been working with Advanced on my quick panel (they are awesome to work with). I am switching from 12V to dual USB chargers. Also, adding 3-4 spare toggles just in case for things I've not considered or will add in the future.

Any other thoughts? Would love the thoughts of those that have built and what they'd do different, add/delete. The collective IQ and history/knowledge of this crew can find something I should change I am sure :-)

Thanks in advance!



Front Access Panels ...bhester

If I was building today I would just mount everything so that it could be accessed on the sub panel, it could be accessed via removing the instrument panel. I just could not do that when I had analog gauges. The big brain box for my AFS engine monitor and my Lightspeed Ignition box are mounted under the LH panel. My altitude encoder use to be under the RH panel, no longer needed, now that I'm using the Garmin G3X. I use clear RTV when installing them and they do not leak. I have been back into them a number of times. I made this mod myself, they are not the ones being sold, but are made like them, only smaller. Feel free to go to my web site and look at my ugly plane ;-)


Advanced Flight EFIS Software Release

Advanced Flight Systems just posted our long-awaited Version 15 software release for the AF-5000 series of EFIS screens, which includes a number of new features:
• Improved graphics.
• Ability to use a Garmin G5 as the backup ADAHRS. The new software even does ADAHRS cross- checking between the Dynon ADAHRS and the G5 ADAHRS.
• New Airspeed filtering algorithm improves the airspeed display in turbulence
• New AHRS filtering algorithm.
• Ability to tune and push frequencies to an Avidyne IFD radio from the EFIS.
• Ability to tune and push frequencies to a Garmin radio (GTR200, GTR255, GTR225) from the EFIS.
• Ability to send ADS-B weather and traffic to the Avidyne IFD Navigator display.
• Improved integration with the PS Engineering PDA-360 Remote Audio panel with Bluetooth phone and music.
• Remote MFD map control from the PFD Joystick. When displaying a map on the PFD, the joystick will control the remote MFD map.
• EFIS Inset Windows (profile view, flight plan, traffic, map, g-meter).
• Display Sectional, IFR Low or IFR High charts in Track Up or North Up
• Added Nexrad WX to Sectional chart.

Link to new Software: Link

AF-5000 Video Pilot Guide YouTube Page:

2018 was an incredible year for Advanced Flight Systems! With the introduction of our Advanced Control Module with Electronic Circuit Breakers, sales grew at an exceptional rate.
We also introduced a new and improved web site at the end of 2018: http://www.advancedflightsystems.com/ Check it out!  more pics


Master contactor failure (maybe?)

Hi friends,

Looking for some advice. I've got an RV-6A with a Lycoming IO-360 and Skytec starter, 750hr TT. I bought it flying about 350 hours ago.

Went flying a week ago, and after a fuel stop, I tried starting back up, head a "clunk", then nothing. Tried again and it worked... gremlins I thought...

Then I went to go flying today, and after turning the master power on: "clunk clunk". Then nothing. My engine display, which is always on if the master power is on, was "off". I toggled the master switch a few more times for troubleshooting and got a wide variety of results. In some cases, I'd get the prop spinning like normal. Other times, I'd turn the starter switch on and absolutely nothing would turn on - not even any "clunks" of the master contactor/solenoid.

I confirmed the battery is healthy (I keep it on a tender and then checked the voltage independently - good). The weather was mild.

I replaced the starter solenoid about 2 years ago after a similar problem. This one is different because sometimes I'm not getting any power at all... but when I get power I can engage the starter.

So, I "think" my master contactor has failed. I only have 1 battery and 1 alternator, but the plane has 2 master contactors in line. When I heard the "clunk"s, they were coming from just one of them. No noise from the other at all.

There is no marking on my contactors, but they look kind of like Aircraft Spruce's LAMAR SOLENOID 12 VOLT CONTINUOUS (X61-0028) - just without the sticker.

Do master contactors fail like this? Thoughts?

Thanks for your help!


Wrong surface landings video

Here's a short and sweet FAA video that's worth the watching:


Garmin announces Q1 2019 aviation webinars

January 8, 2019 - Garmin is pleased to announce aviation webinars through the first-half of 2019. Ranging from Garmin Pilot tips and tricks, cost-effective autopilot upgrades to low-cost avionics solutions, these free webinars offer pilots and customers with a broad overview of the latest Garmin has to offer, while also providing a general operational overview of its vast product line.

Autopilot Retrofits
Low-cost Avionics Solutions
Advanced Avionics Upgrades
ADS-B Solutions for Business Aviation
Garmin Pilot
Garmin avionics for experimental aircraft






January 8, 2019.  Issue #4,733

No Words (too awesome!) ...lucaperazzolli (RV-8 Italy)

At the top of the loop.  During the first january flight we had taken this still photo from a Camera screwed under Franz's plane (along the tip screws line).  It's a strange perspective (for a carburator engine ).  I'd like to share it with you:


Carb Issues ...Stevegrasley

Over the last few months I have been noticing a small amount of dirty fuel/oil dripping out of the nose gear faring onto the nose wheel pant. Nothing really significant and I chalked it up to little leaks, dribbles and dirt on a 5 year old O-360 that I fly behind 300+ hours every year. Nothing else to note in terms of performance anomalies (fuel consumption, power, engine performance in general) except that I seemed to be having to diddle with mixture more and more in the last few months to get nice stable performance at altitude.

Yesterday after a 1 hour flight I pulled up to the hangar and was shutting down. Low and behold the mixture cutoff was fully pulled but it just would not shut down. Would slow way down and then burp and cough and rev up a little more and keep coughing. Seemed like it was definitely not "cutting off". Shut the dual PMAGs off and after a little dieseling it quit.

Pulled the cowl and noticed a lot of fuel sitting in the FAB. (Wow! Where was this fuel coming from? No external leaks anywhere around the carb.) Took off the airfilter thinking the fuel sitting in there was the cause of the continued running as it vaporized. Fired up without the FAB and everything seemed OK. Did a run up and all good. , But, then it started running rough at idle and I had to lean quite a bit for the engine to run smooth. I am at sea level and it was 75 degrees. Odd. Like it was way too rich for some new reason. Tried a shut down and similar story. Shutdown the dual PMAGs and finally got it to quit.

After shut down I noticed a fair amount of fuel dripping off the back of the FAB mounting plate. It was not obvious to me where it was coming from but I think it was internally coming out of the carb...like a float was stuck down and the residual pressure in the engine fuel pump was forcing fuel out...but the mixture was supposedly cutoff? This must have been what has been getting worse over time.

I bought my Lyc O-360 from Van's and it came with an Avstar 10-4164-1 carb. Compared to the carb that I had on my 1972 C172M the Avstar is built like a tank. But something is not right.

I have decided to replace the carb before contemplating any flying. Really get frustrated when I am AOG. I am suspicious of damaged floats and/or mixture valve but I am not sure. Carbs are one thing I have never gotten deep into understanding. Can anybody give me a more definitive answer based on what I have written here? Up until now this carb has 1,260+ trouble free hours on it.


RV-9A Status Report ...9GT

Fabricating a plug for a new snorkel. It will be removable to ease the difficulty of removing/installing the lower cowling with a three blade prop, and it will also house a custom FAB. I don't care much for the Van's FAB bolted to the bottom of the fuel servo. For experimental purposes, I am going to embed a copper tape VOR antenna in it and see how well it works since I already have the materials on hand. No big deal if it doesn't work well. I will just go with my original plan of an Archer style wing tip VOR antenna.


Milestone! ...goatflieg

Another milestone happened today. My thanks to Harry Manvel for his assistance and shared wisdom.


Insurance PIREP ...Leah (VAF advertiser)

DID YOU KNOW older pilots need to take extra precautions when comes to insurance?

Welcome to 2019!!! It’s a new year and we’re all going to be turning another year older. Did you know that some insurance companies will deny starting coverage for you once you reach a certain age no matter what your health condition is? It’s true, before you turn 75 years old, make sure you are with a solid company. A company that won’t reduce coverage, require an annual medical, or require you to fly “dual only” just because you had another birthday. There are several good companies for senior pilots, so if you are 75 years or older, check with your agent to make sure you won’t have any surprises come your next renewal. Age is just a number. You can still fly insured well into your 80’s as long as you plan ahead.

We wish you all a happy new year and safe flying!!!


Panel Demo / Fit Test ...ssokol

Here's a shot of a full system (less the engine monitor) I put together using the blank I cut for the booth at Oshkosh last year.

In the foreground you can see the ADC, GPS puck, and FlightBox. On the far side of the FlightBox is a 4-port USB hub. Not pictured are the power supplies for the iPads.


Milestone! ...MJarreau

 Finished Our First Page!

It's a silly thing, yet huge for us! We have completed Page 8-2 (HS rear spar). A neighbor is an A&P type for the Coast Guard and said our work was just fine. (You can't come close to imagining what that did for our egos!)

What a learning curve... ..never having used our hands before... ..replacing all the parts (at least once)... ..never having painted anything much less performing significant surface prep. This stuff is just amazing.

Thanks to all the contributors here, we learn much from your posts!

RV-10 Emp Kit!


Milestone ...Pilotjohns

Big day today, I rolled the fuselage canoe. It is just a symbolic step about half way through the fuselage construction.  more pics


IFR Hood Time Safety Pilot

Local pilot needed ballast a safety pilot.  Sure, why not? 


Some grabs (click to enlage).  Tracked in Garmin Pilot.



January 7, 2019.  Issue #4,732

Saturday morning before drywall duty I had the pleasure of giving new friend George his first ride in a small plane.  He works in law enforcement.  George and Cynde are 'an item' as the kids say, and we've known Cynde pretty much our whole lives.  Great guy!  Cynde and George drove up, and I think Cynde was planning on hanging out on the couch.  Randy walked up and said he wanted to go fly too.  New plan.  "You have a hat I can wear?"  Yes. ;^)


It was 00000kt and CAVU, so of course we're doing some formation if the passengers don't object.  Gentle turns and nothing too steep for our guests, then it was up to KGLE for gas.  It seemed everyone with an airplane was flying Saturday.  I know a big group went to KSEP for BBQ (I bowed out because I needed to be home repairing the closet by midday).  Anywho, back to the story, gas bought and back in the air.  Randy and Cynde went direct back 52F while George and I flew over to his neck of the woods so he could see his house.  On the way we saw a B-52, guessing out of KGYI or such).  It turned away and we got a nice show of exhaust.  While on the ground GLE I texted lifelong friend Billy T to see if he was home (lives near George).  Yes.  "Go in your backyard in 14 minutes."  OK.  Thankfully he didn't moon me (it's in line with his character).  Maybe his wife and son standing next to him were an influence.  Waves exchanged.


Let George fly for about 15 minutes and then back on the ground 52F, handshakes, laughs and a sense of accomplishment.  Got to treat a law enforcement officer to some aviating fun, got to have some laughs with a family friend, got to share airspace with a B-52 defending my freedoms, and lucked into a greaser landing (told him they were all like that).  Later I got the 'George wants to know how much it costs to learn to fly' text from Cynde <g>.  And so it begins...;^)


The rest of Saturday was drywall and work.  Sunday 0730 Mass, more drywall and more work.  A nice, productive weekend.

Hope you had the same and that you have a nice Monday.  Here's the rest of the RV news from the weekend...



I have 125 hours on my RV7A with an Aero Sport 0-360 ECI engine. The prop is a Sensenich metal prop purchased through Vans. During take off and level flight I have a vibration. When descending it is not near as noticeable. I had the prop dynamically balanced. It seams to be better when lean of peak. Leak down and regular compression testing show good. Ignition is a Light Speed II and one mag. Timing is set correct. Carb was just overhauled. Any ideas or suggestions?
RV7A Completed


One more Sunset.....petehowell

I know I probably post too many sunset pics, but I snapped this on a quick flight tonight and really liked the colors from the HDR setting on the phone. The sun, the ice, and the sky were really kinda special.........


How bad is it? (back riveting oops)

Well, I did it. The thing I said I wouldn't do. I riveted off the edge of my back rivet plate and damaged my rudder skin. SEE PHOTOS HERE.

Will be putting a call into Vans, but hoping someone here can talk me off the cliff. Is this a, "Buy a new skin don't even think about continuing," OR "A little paint filler after completion will take care of that?"

Few positives: 1) It was barely off the plate, so wasn't able to push down to workbench and punch through, 2) I caught it on about the 3rd hit of the rivet gun. I went ahead and dimpled the hole again, and that looks fine along with the stiffener, but wondering about the dent/crease on the outside of the skin. Thoughts?


RV-14A Status Report ...kbalch

Fuselage join accomplished this morning. A complete non-event, as everything clecoed right together as expected. For anyone who’s built an earlier, pre-matched hole, kit, these -14 kits seem like cheating. I built an early -8 and the difference is night and day. I love it!


Finally Pulled the Trigger!

Hi, y'all,

Might as well introduce myself... I (we) finally pulled the trigger today after lurking for perhaps a record setting 12 years! I surprised myself and ordered an RV14 instead of the -8 that I have a sweet set of Grove Airfoil Landing gear for in my garage.

I can already credit people here on the forum for guiding me to keep my better half happy and perhaps more engaged in the project.

While I'm technically an Aerospace Engineer with 20 years of military flying and now an Airline pilot, I'm going to rely heavily on the group here for advice and instruction. It should be a fun ride! I've just got to keep telling myself you eat an elephant one bite at a time...
B. Hoover
N858BC (Reserved)



Oops, we did it again!  It was great to see everybody. We counted 23 heads.


RV-14 Electrical Diagram ...mulde35d

With all the discussion on lighting and electrical noise I thought I would post the primary power and G3X pinout diagram that I created over the course of about 6 weeks of sitting in hotel rooms bored out of my mind. This is still under revision as I actually build it, but while the pictures are only JPEG I would be happy to email the full visio product to anyone who is interested (PM me with your email address). I created this from scratch while referencing an electrical drawing that was produced by a professional company to give me some ideas on how to lay things out in a clear manner. Hence why it may look like a paid for product, but is purely my creation. The wire numbering scheme is also original and has a decoding method to the madness that should help me identify wires quickly in the aircraft should I find problems once in flight.

I am also open to any input from any electrical guru's in the house as most of this was self learning from the baseline installation documents with a couple calls to Garmin for some detailed pinout instructions. Have fun on the eye chart if you so desire.


RV-12 Status Report ...rongawer

I installed a canopy latch with security lock from Aircraft Specialty. Steve was very helpful and I highly recommend this upgrade.


Status Report ...jcarne

Somewhat of a big day today. After finishing the flap fabrication it was time for my last major primer session. Almost everything is primed for the wings (just push tubes left) and almost everything for the fuselage (push tubes and a couple of small parts) I will still have some odds and ends here and there but this is the last big one!


Pilots needed

This Summer August 13-16 there will be a gathering of 45,000 - 50,000 kids grades 5-12 at Oshkosh, these kids are from around the world. I am responsible for the aviation portion of their activities. The last time this event was held we gave around 800 Young Eagle rides in the 2 1/2 days that weather was good. Our goal is 1,000 if we have 4 good days of weather. I am looking for volunteers that would like to help with flights. We also have a ground display area on aviation, home building, and mission aviation. The kids will all have gone an intro to aviation and a preflight before they come for their Young Eagle ride.

If you would like to help for any or all of this time please contact me. I will be their with my RV-10 (now this is RV related )
Bill Greenley


RV-Lancair Brotherhood Day...snopercod

The weather was perfect and we had a great turnout today at GMU - seven people! Besides the regulars (Darwin couldn't make it), Keith from Greenville showed up in his RV-12, and Doug and wife Susan from Gainsville, GA flew in in his RV-12, making three RV-12s! Mark Cigal in his RV-8 brought his Cirrus instructor friend Chuck from Denver. Lunch was good as usual and it was a pleasure to meet the new folks. I hope they'll come join us again the next time we do this. In no particular order:

Owen's Red RV-12 and Keith's Blue RV-12:  more pics


Year 12 Performance Runs ...petehowell RV-9A

Got out and up today to see how the old girl is doing at cruise.

Cloudy, but 02degC and a pretty nice day. She seems to still have it at 12+ years and 2096 hours!

O-320, carb, dual EI, Hartzell, mogas. Otto flying the legs.

Yep - The D-10A has the dreaded black spot - it is stable for now, so I am just leaving it. The D-10A and the EMS-D10 have been great for 12 years and I know Dynon will fix me up when time comes.

The snapshot:


Master contactor failure (maybe?)

Hi friends,

Looking for some advice. I've got an RV-6A with a Lycoming IO-360 and Skytec starter, 750hr TT. I bought it flying about 350 hours ago.

Went flying a week ago, and after a fuel stop, I tried starting back up, head a "clunk", then nothing. Tried again and it worked... gremlins I thought...

Then I went to go flying today, and after turning the master power on: "clunk clunk". Then nothing. My engine display, which is always on if the master power is on, was "off". I toggled the master switch a few more times for troubleshooting and got a wide variety of results. In some cases, I'd get the prop spinning like normal. Other times, I'd turn the starter switch on and absolutely nothing would turn on - not even any "clunks" of the master contactor/solenoid.

I confirmed the battery is healthy (I keep it on a tender and then checked the voltage independently - good). The weather was mild.

I replaced the starter solenoid about 2 years ago after a similar problem. This one is different because sometimes I'm not getting any power at all... but when I get power I can engage the starter.

So, I "think" my master contactor has failed. I only have 1 battery and 1 alternator, but the plane has 2 master contactors in line. When I heard the "clunk"s, they were coming from just one of them. No noise from the other at all.

There is no marking on my contactors, but they look kind of like Aircraft Spruce's LAMAR SOLENOID 12 VOLT CONTINUOUS (X61-0028) - just without the sticker.

Do master contactors fail like this? Thoughts?

Thanks for your help!



January 4, 2019.  Issue #4,731
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!

First Flight RV-12 N12SM ...Tacco

On New Years Day. After 18 months of build time. Flew great! No surprises. Rudder trim needs adjusted. No heavy wing. Finished half of PAP FT-1. Still grinning.


RV-10 #41988 - DFW

And so it begins........

After at least three years lurking on this site and flip flopping between a 10, 9a or 14a, and even looking at some high wing models I made the leap today.

Officially ordered my RV-10 QB wing kit. I’m waiting a few months to order the tail kit as I recover from Rotator cuff surgery. I figure this will be added incentive to do the exercises and recover.

Can’t wait to start the process. While I’m one armed over the next few months I plan to clean and organize my workspace/garage.

Thanks to dr’s website and the countless blogs and threads I have read to get to the starting point. And I’m sure I will be reading even more on this site as I move forward
Tim Foster
RV-10 QB Wings ordered


How I painted my RV-6 Fuse ...Joewebb 12min vid


Exit pressure must match local exterior flow at exit

...Steve Smith thoughts

The fundamental rule of subsonic exit flow is that the internal flow pressure at the exit must match the external flow pressure at the exit.

When you open a cowl flap or have a diverging exit angle, you are creating an area of lower pressure in the external flow, which yes indeed helps extract more flow through the internal flow path, because you are exiting into lower pressure. The penalty for this is the increase in frontal area needed to create the accelerated external flow, and the likelihood that exiting internal flow may be at a lower velocity than the external flow.

When you have an exit in an area where the external geometry is tapering or sloping back towards smaller cross sections as you go downstream, the other flow is slowing down, pressure increasing, and you are exhausting into an area of elevated pressure compared to the free stream. The internal flow at the exit is therefore at a higher pressure, lower velocity than it could have been. In small doses, this region of decelerating flow, with rising pressure, can be good - the pressure recovery on the aft-facing slope provides some thrust. But if the pressure gradient is too adverse (pressure rising too fast) the boundary layer will separate and you will have a separated flow region trapped in the area where the body is getting smaller, causing pressure drag - which is a way of saying that you are not getting the pressure recovery that you would have gotten had the flow stayed attached.  ...


Tuft Testing and Systems ...DanH (same thread)

Larry, first suggestion is to think in terms of building a system. Whatever individual modifications you might make should be considered in a system context. Bandaids only go so far, and real bolt-on speed is rare.

Next, remember the little things. I'm going to take one subject as an example, that 4-pipe exhaust. You're thinking about cutting off the downturns, but in the context of how to reduce cooling drag, the best bet would be to stack it under a workbench somewhere.  ...


Welcome Aboard...Bellhemem (Lafayette, LA)

Vans sold another RV10 Kit

I took the plunge and should have a RV 10 Empennage kit delivered next week. I have a few questions as I do not personally know any RV builders, or have an active EAA.

I have most of what I need (I think). Advise on a couple of questionable parts/tools –

Substructure Dimple Die 3/32? Leaning towards no…

Countersink Jig?

Tail light Adapter Ring?

Threaded Tie Down Block?

Rudder Cable Fairing?

Static Line Kit from Cleveland any better/worse than Vans?

I have ordered extra rivets, the Radio Shack Self-Adhesive clips for the Static Line, and RV10 Bucking Bar.

Anything else other than a Light/Conduit I may need to finish the Emp?


New Panel Design - Critiques Please ...ssokol

I spent part of the holiday break working on a design for a new panel for my RV-6A. I'm getting close to having a first cut of my home-grown avionics suite working and its time to bite the bullet and start "eating my own dog food" as they say. Please take a look and let me know what you think. ...


Status Report ...jcarney

Well after finishing up the ailerons by bolting the brackets on it was time to start the flaps.


19K and 89kt Xwind ...crabandy

Also from 2018, KSDL..KICT 3:40ish enroute time and less than 20 gallons if I recall correctly.


Inspiration from 'Ron's Cart' ...TASEsq

I took great inspiration from Ron’s cart below, but not being able to find a cheap cart that wasn’t too big, I just used some left over kitchen to build mine. The drawers are very handy (they are 10mm ply), for stuff needed often but not every second. The drill bit holder and die holders are the best things ever - never have to search for a bit, and I’ve since removed some I don’t use and added reamers for an3 and 4 bolts. The air tools hang on a bit of PVC pipe with notches cut. I also now have a sandpaper holder on the side, and found 5lt olive oil cans are the best for clecos. Very handy having all the hardware boxes wherever I’m working. Thanks for the inspiration!



January 3, 2019.  Issue #4,730

Mothership Jan 1 pic.


2019 Sats, maybe ahead of Vlad for a day? ...BruceEicher

Finished off (this year so far) 15 airports with landing and Take offs, 5 new airports, one grass strip and 2 night landings. Was trying for the entire Oregon Coast and all airstrips. Had to scrub one grass strip after landing on the better one, it was very soft and the other posted warnings.........

Now Vlad, if I want to keep this up I might just have to install your auxiliary fuel tank so conveniently left in my hangar <g>


Video on RV-12iS Drop In Lines ...Aircraft Specialty

[ed. I enjoyed this video immencely!  If you have a 19 minute hole in your day I recommend it.  Nerds of the World Unite!!!! ;^).  v/r,]

The rv12is provided a great opportunity to fully utilize CNC tube bending technology to provide drop in lines for the 12iS aircraft that the OP of this message utilized in his aircraft.

Here is a video that shows the design process, fabrication, as well as tube final dimension verification.

The 10:22 mark is where the actual tube bending begins. The rest of the video shows how the entire process is done from start to finish.

As always, we couldn't have done this without the help of some great beta testers. The RV/ Experimental community is comprised of some great people, and we really enjoy working with you to refine and improve the build experience.


HS spar scratches RV 9 ...toddramsey

"...finished match drilling my ribs to the spars on my horizontal stabilizer. When I disassembled and removed the blue plastic, I found these shallow scratches. I believe they came from the brake used in bending the spars in the manufacturing process. The blue plastic was also cut along these scratches. I used mineral spirits to clean the scratches to remove the plastic residue and the photos show what remains. These scratches are very shallow but I can feel them with my fingernail."


From Lycoming...


Photos of the 'Wood Tool Cart' ...ronshchreck

...per request.


Potentially catastrophic mistake: Aft canopy deck position along the longerons


Happy new year everyone. Wish I could share in the happiness, but I just found what's possibly a catastrophic mistake I made on the RV, and wanted to share it. Obviously this is going to involve a long discussion with Van's, but I thought I'd start a discussion here to potentially prepare myself for the extremely bad news I have coming.

Long story short, it looks like I built the whole forward and mid fuselage around incorrectly bent and drilled longerons.

I'm at the point in the build where I'm disassembling the forward fuselage to prep the surfaces, dimple, and countersink them for riveting. While countersinking the longerons, something just didn't look right. The top holes I had drilled for the aft canopy deck were way too far aft. So I clecoed the longeron back to the mid-fuselage, and pulled out the F-721B aft canopy deck pieces. Lo and behold, the holes are indeed way too far back:  ...



January 2, 2019.  Issue #4,729
Clean drywall cuts made - drying out continues (bad pano pic). Washroom ops returning to normal. Clothes donation pile growing - clothes that I didn’t know I had tossed in. ‘Professional clothes’ whittled down to about a foot and a half of rack space - feels pretty great to tell you the truth (pic).  Less clutter is nice.
  Hope you had a nice holiday and that your 2019 goes swell.

Getting Back to Building! ...llavalle

So some of the older folks here might remember me. I was building a -9A back in what.. humm 2008-2009. Had a webcam link in my signature which was awesome in 2008.

Went to 'Osh in 2009 and met some of the folks here! At the Van's dinner, our host here, DR, recognized me by saying "hey, you're that French Canadian guy from Québec, right?"

So anyway, after 265hours and 3642 rivets (yup, counted them), life had other plans for me and I paused the building of the -9A. ~2 years later, was offered a very good price on it so I decided to sell it. Emp was complete and inspected by MD-RA (specific to Canada stuff). One wing was mostly complete, the other one I was working on.  continue


Unbelievable! ...Don Patrick


After a week of fighting the flu, I managed to get to the airport and strapped on my RV-8.

I can't say that I wasn't nervous..I sure was, but once the power was poured on, all trepidation left and it was down to business.

What an amazing feeling....Incredible!!!

The only issues I had was a heavy right wing, a D180 that screamed stall at me the entire flight (my programming mistake) and a MP issue that I have to resolve.

There are so many I have to thank. My family, you're the best! Manny Rosario and the boys at Enterprise Air...your ACES!. Rob Baldasaro, thanks for the paint work!. Simon Hitcheon, thanks for my RV checkout and the support!! All the others from this site for the help and guidance, much thanks!

For those of you still building...keep moving forward every day...These are amazing aircraft!!

It wasn't a perfect weather day, but the end result..PRICELESS!!


RV-9 Daddy/Daughter Vlog to Cumberland ...rv9daughter

RV9 daughter is home for the holidays! Which means that I had to ask my old man to take the RV for a spin. We packed some snacks and made the short trek to Cumberland, WI on Sunday. I made this (very poorly filmed and edited) video just for a fun memory, but my family thought you all might like to see it. Enjoy


Flight Data Recorders: Foreflight logger, Arduino, Raspberry Pi


So last week I decided to fly some simple tests to determine how useful the Foreflight Track Logger is in capturing data for Flight Tests.

So I flew a simple plan which consisted of taking off, flying wind speed and direction circles at 5000 feet and then again at 8000 feet, then doing some simple aerobatics to see if the Track Logger could also be used to tell me how I'm doing with the acro.

The results were interesting. I downloaded the CSV file from Foreflight and wrote some Python to capture the data and plot it out in 3D.

The short answer is - the Foreflight Track Logger might be useful for Phase 1 flight test of climb, airspeed calibration,best glide, Vx Vy determination etc.

Doesn't seem to be useful in showing a round loop.

This is the 3D plot of the full flight. The roll, loop and roll is the track at the far right of the plot:  continue


RV-12iS Fuel Line Photos ...subpar_bucker

wanted to send a quick post our showing the installation of the fuel lines I purchased from Aircraft Specialty.  ......    I can say it was quite delightful after humiliating myself fabricating the long fuel lines to simply attach these lines where they belonged in a single attempt


No Excuses ...petehowell

Brrr - someone turned off the heat in the upper midwest today, but Bernie and I had the day off - that means a good day to fly! -1F, bundle up and go!


Flight Levels Club ...airguy

Since we've got the "200 knots" club and it's been around for a while, I thought we should have this one as well. I know quite a few of us have been up there with our RV's, and a couple of us have gone WAY up there.

Anyway, here's my entry, coming back home from Reno 2018, was picking up a trace of ice in the top of a layer at 17,000 so requested FL190 to get clear


2019 New Year Resolutions ...Jaybird gets the ball rolling

2019 New Year Resolutions

Exercise more
Lose weight
Install ADSB
Fly more this year.

Resolutions are made to be broken. Right?
I predict,,,,, This time next year I’ll be asking what you did to comply with this new ADSB rule? I’ll still need to exercise more, and lose weight.

I only flew 113 hours in 2018. I’m wondering why I have 3 airplanes.


From Paul at Kitplanes


Happy New Year - And (Maybe) Hat Sighting ...tcard

Happy New Year to all of our flying friends! The Year 2018 ended with a flight, so it seemed necessary for 2019 to start with a flight. There wasn't any of the requisite noise from our airpark community, so we decided to fix that even though the weather was, well, not great. Clearly our fellow pilots needed a ceiling report. The consensus in our cockpit was low and "variable".