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February 28, 2020.  Issue #5,029.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.
(Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

My President's RV Day ...PHOTO01

On President's Day I got up early for a morning flight north to Cambridge MD:


Service Bulletin SB 19-09-09 Published - Inspect RV-10 gear leg mount lug

Van's Aircraft has published a new Service Bulletin for the RV-10, SB 19-09-09. This bulletin directs RV-10 owners to inspect the inboard attachment lugs on the RV-10 nose gear leg for potential cracks at a specific location. If no cracks are found, the gear leg is serviceable and you may continue to fly the airplane and re-inspect each year at the annual condition inspection. Replacement is not necessary in that case.

If a crack is found, owners are directed to order a kit that contains an updated RV-10 nose gear leg and associated hardware. This is described in the service bulletin document.  continue


Europe Formation Clinic 2019 ...lucaperazzolli

Finally, I found the time to edit a bunch of videos taken during our FFI Italian Meeting. Me and Franz hosted the RV group at our airport (LITD) in September 2019 with the support and energy of Tobias Treichel (he had been in West Coast Formation Clinic The WCFC in Madera) who probably will become our European FFI coordinator

We had the great opportunity to work with Steve and Stephen that jumped the Pond from California Republic giving us a solid standard in Formation Flying.

We flew in our local area and in Venice too.



RV-6 Rebuild Project Update ...jamlip

I've been ignoring the project. My RV-4 ate a cylinder, so I replaced it, did the hour of power and remembered how much I enjoyed flying just for the sale of it. So I did a bit more, then went to the Arizona Flying Circus fly in. A few days later, an RV-7-owning friend visited from the UK and we flew basically all week.

I really love my RV-4. It's that wonderful combination of being easy to fly but tricky to master. It's going to be hard to sell it once the RV-6 is finished.

Anyway, went to the hangar today. Called for fuel and had the guy fill my left tank two gallons at a time as I calibrated the gauge. Pulled the top hose off the oil cooler, loosened the spark plugs and pulled the prop through to get oil pressure. Retightened everything, set the Emag timing, and hit the starter...


My ****ing starter solenoid is dead.

So I hand-propped the motor. After a couple of whumps and bangs it sprang to life. Oil pressure is good, prop makes all the right noises (I've never owned a CS prop before). I ran it for ten minutes and shut it off. Major milestone reached.

So now my to-do list looks something like this...

Get a starter that works and fit it to the engine
Install intercom & radio
Patch some of the redundant holes in the firewall with stainless
Fill, calibrate and check right wing tank
Repair the cowling where someone has done a hash job of of the screwed-together bit at the front
Connect-up nav light wiring
Get a condition inspection

And on my non-urgent list:

Fit gear leg fairings and pressure recovery wheel pants (I have all the parts)
Make covers for seat cushions (the old ones are basically turning to dust)

I'd also really like to fit electric trim to this - since I removed the centre console thing under the panel, the cable is all in the way and looks ugly as ****.

It looks like there was a kit available some time ago, but the cable part has been discontinued. Any leads greatly appreciated!


Article in Flying on John Stahr's Paint Designs


2,000 hr iridium plugs ...turbo

my second engine has had these champion iridium plugs in since new or 2,000 tach hrs. running car gas in cruise tank and 50/50 gas and 100LL in take off and landing tank this is what they looked like after removing. the gap never changes, brush off the threads, no lead balls, lube the threads, rotate and install. fly safe.


Grapevine, Az Fly-In ...Capt Sandy

More Arizona Flying.
Roy recently tapped in to happenings with the Arizona Pilots association. There's a Fly-In gathering at Grapevine Airport the third Saturday of every month during the "cool" season. We decided to go check the place out and see what was shak'in. The first part of the video captures the following week - note there are no other planes there, and on the weekend of which I write, there were a couple tents and planes gathered. The runway was fine - maybe even better condition than Ajo (base for the winter).
About 30 planes in all. The fly-in is intended to be a camping trip, but the low night temps dissuaded most, and most - including us - only stayed for lunch.
The airport is REMOTE - no water, no facilities, other than a pot-a-potty, firewood, fire-rings and a few picnic tables. We learned that the runway was abandoned, and the Arizona Pilots Association raised PRIVATE funds to have the runway paved and put in the few amenities that are there.
Most of the planes were certified-type, so the tribe a bit different than our usual RV tribe. Still, all passionate about aviation, and therefore all great folks.
Roy and I returned the following week and camped there... but thats a tale for another time.

Fair Winds!


An Article in Kitplanes on Buying Used RVs



February 27, 2020.  Issue #5,028.
  Any non-VAF free moments Tue/Wed were spent nibbling away at a 20hr web-based training course for my upcoming sim extra paper route.  From what I've read so far, the Phenom 300 is an amazing aircraft.  Started recording the limitations and memory items on my phone's Voice Memos app so I can listen to them in the car via bluetooth through the speakers on drives.  This worked well for me in the past prepping for orals and writtens.
  On a tangent (finances), are there any DFW area dentists that read this site?  We're looking for a new one that maybe doesn't require a second mortgage to get a cavity filled <grin>.
(Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Emma (Eddy Tohikian photo)


Inspection passed! ...kbalch

My RV-14A project (#140494) officially became an airplane (N114KB) on Saturday.

Thanks to Vic for flying down and giving a thorough look over my work of the last 21 months. Several other -14(A) builder friends of mine were in attendance to familiarize themselves with the process and I think everyone went home reassured that it's not a root canal, but a friendly, low-key look at the airplane. Plus the paperwork, of course. Lots of paperwork in triplicate.

Between sorting out a lingering P-mag issue (done!), a prop low-pitch adjustment (to be done tomorrow), and two days of mid-week rain, I'm hoping to get the first flight accomplished on Friday.

For those keeping track of such things, I began the project in late May 2018 and put in just under 1,200 hours of hands-on work (plus, no doubt, the usual couple hundred hours of unlogged research & reading time online) on the entirely standard, non-QB, kit. I'll be flying it unpainted until delivery to the paint shop after SnF.  ...


3D Printed Parts and Molds: Part III ...AX-O

Used West system epoxy mixed 5 to 1 with slow hardener.

Items laid on the mold were:
-3 layers of carbon fiber with multiple overlaps on the nose to make that stronger for a clamp.
-1 layer of peel-ply
-1 layer of perforated plastic
-1 layer of cotton

That was placed inside a hand made bag (plastic and tape, that was another trick I learned at Catto's place).

A vacuum was placed on the bag via a pump, approx 25 PSI. That entire assembly was placed under a moving blanket and a small portable heater was placed inside. That kept the temps inside at 118 deg during the curing process despite an OAT of 55 deg.

Little dots you see is the resin coming through the perforated plastic. 


PANEL SUGGESTIONS Please ...Gyrodoug

My vacuum pump died. I want to toss the system. I'm strongly considering the Garmin G5. But since I already want to upgrade my steam gauge panel, the vac system death seems like the nudge I need to make some moves.

But I'm a noob with regards to avionics and what talks to what... on the side... I have an iPad with FlyQ that I'll always have with me as well.

I have an uninstalled TT Digiflight ii I want to install. I also have a panel mounted Garmin 196 that has to GO!

Do I go with a Garmin G5 and Aera 660 gps to run the autopilot


Double the investment and go with the GRT Horizon 10.1...



Avionics options are truly daunting to think about.

I'm looking forward to your opinions!

Thank you.


Now What!? ...3y3Flyer

Dimpled an extra hole right next to the one I was supposed to dimple. Thought about pounding it out, then dimple the correct hole and using a little filler...but I worried the rivet will not set properly and I create more of a mess of the situation. It's on the VS skin of an RV8A...I can't be the first idiot in history to ever make this mistake...Any ideas? BTW, I have learned through this process that my 4 lettered vocabulary is much greater than anticipated!


Cooling Tips for Cylinder #6 ...RV-10

My #6 CHT is a good 10 -15 degrees higher than any of the other 5 cylinders. The EGT is in line with the others.

Thoughts on opportunities to assist with airflow?

I improved the sealing on the oil door and made some improvements to the baffles and that helped a bit but looking for more. I also looked in the area and sealed a bit more on the inboard rear with RTV to force the air over the cylinder.

My oil temp is running about 180 so I may try to block a bit of the flow to the cooler and see if that helps.

Other thoughts?


Status Report ...KazooRV-9A

Hard to believe I haven't posted an update for a year!
Lots of build progress has occurred.
In the big picture we:
-Completed the sliding canopy (90%), what a job that was... Just need the latch installed and a couple of small things.
-Completed the wings/Ailerons/flaps including installation of Autopilot servo and a late decision to add stall warning.
-Installed the wings on the fuse temporarily to set all things that required adjustment or rigging or connections.
-Completed the front structure including installation of the Aerotronics panel. Enough wiring was completed to power the panel to see the pretty lights and display.
-Installed aileron trim servo and Altitude hold servo.
-Purchased the Van's re-designed front engine and gear leg mount. Managed to find a guy who needed my original design parts and sold them to him. The new parts installed nicely.
-Installed the tail feathers to set rigging, cables, etc. It will come back off for paintwork.
-And the exciting installation of the Poplar Grove assembled O-320. That really added some visual progress!

We accomplished this among other activities like flying our vintage 1946 Cessna 120, restoring a 1972 Triumph 500, Airventure Oshkosh, Motorcycle trips, and numerous other things in life. N951AC is coming along well. We're currently wiring firewall foreward, want to get that done of course before installing the forward skin. Then will get up on the mains, the next big visual progress item.  ...


Not RV, but a lot of RV folks in this area have an interest. ...like me.

March 12-15, 2020 at KGLE.  FMI: LoneStarSTOL.com



February 26, 2020.  Issue #5,027. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

My RV Weekend ...goatflieg

Flight with Leo Knowlden
On Friday I was invited to fly with Leo Knowlden as he flew off his last few hours of Phase 1.

Departed KPTK to KRNP for fuel, then wandered around Michigan within the borders of his 50nm radius before returning for pattern work. Took a break for lunch, then out to overfly Y47 and 1D2 before calling it a day. Almost four hours of flying, and loved every minute. Took hundreds of photos and hours of video; I'll share just a taste here. Thanks Leo!  more


From the Mothership


Panel Improvement Needle Moves a Bit

Thanks to the help of Danny King (he has done this screen upgrade in his RV-8).  The new G3X screen holes are widened, the new mounting holes have been drilled, the new nutplates have been riveted in.  Touch screen functionality is on the horizon.  Slow (all due to me), but progress nonetheless....



3D Printed Parts and Molds ...AX-O

Part 2

The next phase was to plan out the work. This is similar to painting. The better work you do on the front side, the better the part ends up at the end.
I cut the carbon fiber are required to cover the mold. This particular carbon fiber is the left over stuff from my Formula One race plane. Side note: This type of fiber is Bid. But not the standard Bid. It was discovered by Paulo Iscold while building one of his race planes. A boat manufacturer had excess material and they needed to get rid of it. They made Paulo an offer that he could not refuse. The nice thing about it is that the fibers are not interweaved, they are laid on top of each other then stitched. So you can cut it and pick it up as you desired and it does not lose its shape. Paulo passed the gouge to Craig Catto and the fabric is now used on all his props. And now on to an experiment for an air filter "box".  more pics


My RV Weekend ...PHOTO01

Last Wednesday I flew our family RV-6 from eastern Virginia back home to Tennessee prior to an upcoming deployment. I was scheduled on an FCF at work starting at 0700, but after getting cancelled in the afternoon I made the drive out to Hampton Roads for preflight.  contine


Foot Powered Dimpler ...Paulv

This foot-operated dimpler takes standard dimple dies and has enough depth to dimple wing and fuselage rivet holes. It is home built from mainly steel offcuts.


Elevator skin (E00901B), small crack when bending trim tab closing tab down. ...jdog0411

Hey everyone,

I bent the closeout tab down on the E00901B elevator skin, and it bent down fine and I was able to get it to bend 90 degrees, but it didn't bend right on the relief cutout in the corner and cracked slightly in the corner of the bend. I'm emailing Van's but will this require a new skin? It's a little difficult to see in the photos, but it's a hairline crack right in the corner.


From Superior



February 25, 2020.  Issue #5,026. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Youthful Exuberance ...Matt Ziemann

I know this actually isn't a great RV photo because Dan is so low he blends in with the background, but this was my daughter yesterday watching Dan Horton take off. We came out to just get something out of the hangar but she wanted to stay, sit in the RV pretending to fly, and then as we were leaving a few planes were heading up to enjoy a beautiful sunset. Harper wanted to stay and watch and didn't want to leave. I wish you could have heard her saying "Go Mr. Dan!", waving, and cheering, but I think you can gather her excitement from the photo.



My RV Weekend ...Av8safe

First flight for my right seater
Well, since the weather was just too good to stay on the ground, my wife and I decided to take the new bird (Still needs a name) to see our daughter in Charlottesville. First flight in the 7 for my right seater. She was a trooper, especially on the 3:30 return with the headwinds. Hopefully the first of many great trips in our new time machine!


AOG PIREP/Update ...Sibirsky

Let me start with saying the solidarity in the RV community is amazing ,
thanks to all who replied , texted and called me!  I got home safe , today made my first night flight in my RV9A , I departed KMHT at 17:30 local time , VFR direct to Brookhaven with half a radio , (I could only receive) .
I will post more tomorrow, I am exhausted , have a good night !


Trip #1 Mission Take Momma ...ty1295

Having been a VAF reader for many years now, and only a flying airplane owner for 6 months its my turn to return the favor and hopefully provide some motivation to keep pounding rivets.

This weekend was the first trip out of phase 1 and a very successful one.

Bit of backstory first. 5 years ago I meet Becca and her and I became a blended family of sorts. She has 1 son, and I have 1 son and 1 daughter. Her son will be 20 next week, and joined the Airforce 1.5 years ago.

My daughter will be 20 in July, and now lives in Tacoma WA going to school. (where I grew up and where all my family is)

My son is just 11 and lives here in Louisville Kentucky.

Becca and I got marries in December after having been "dating" for 5 years. With only 1 child around part time, and the other 2 off starting life we have a lot of chances in the future to put this time machine to work. This weekend was the first having just completed my 40 Hours in my RV9A.

Becca's son Michael is graduating Friday from Weather school in the AF at Biloxi Mississippi. Both our schedules were free this past weekend, and the weather was looking to be perfect for a trip, stretch the airplanes wings and my own pilot wings with a long cross country.

Friday morning Becca got up and worked from home until noon, while I flight planned and quadruple checked my weather predictions. All was looking good, the plane has been flying flawless, all lights were green.

Depart KLOU (Bowman Field Louisville Kentucky) at 1pm EST. First leg is to Winchester Municipal Airport in southern Tennessee for cheap fuel $3.8X. Being this was only Becca's 3rd time in my airplane, the just over 1 hours would be a good test.  ...


3D printed parts and molds: A how to guide (of my experiment) ...AX-O

This thread is to document a project that I have been making and maybe show other folks what they can also do. I wanted to challenge myself and learn new skills.

Please lets not go into the there is no alternate air source or not enough media to filter on the air or world is going to end because there is a carbon fiber parts in the vicinity of an aluminum aircraft. This is a project to learn new skills, fail and build.

I chose to make an air filter enclosure. The reason was because the room in the cowl is restricted to the mold line, the shape would require contours, it would force me to find a way to mount the enclosure and nicely bring that air into the fuel servo. It would also force me to learn how to use technology that i don't use.

My previous version was made out of fiber glass and was made off a wooden mold that belongs to Dave Anders. Looks like this.  ...


West Coast Formation Clinic 2020, Apr 17-19 - WCFC 2020 ...AX-O

This year's West Coast Formation Clinic will be Apr 17-19.

We are behind time line for this event. Therefore, applications will be closed by the end of the day on March 1st.

Like every year we are expecting that we will receive more applicants than we can safely support. The management team will evaluate applications and contact participants as soon as possible after the application period closes.

Please remember that the management team does this for fun and to help the RV-community be safer when performing formation flying. This is NOT our job; please give us time to figure out this complex event. There is a lot that goes into making this a safe event.

To apply and/or for additional details, visit the WCFC 2020 website shown below.

Date: Apr 17-19
Location: Madera, CA (KMAE)
Website: WCFC 2020
If you have any questions, please contact me or any of the POCs shown on our web site. Hope to see you there. Thank you.


From the Mothership


From Hartzell




February 24, 2020.  Issue #5,025. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

RV-8 Birthday Present ...Rob Traynham

Today is Jacob's ninth birthday. He loves flying in our RV-8 and he's been building up his G tolerance. Today, on his birthday, he and his dad, my son (ex A-10 Warthog pilot), took N478KT up for a morning session. Jacob wanted to see if he could beat his historical high G load of three Gs. Today, on his ninth birthday, he went to four Gs! If you ask him how it was, he'll tell you, "Don't get your head down!" We just love our RV as it is always adding new grins! BTW, Jacob's initials are JET.


Valentine's Day Weekend ...Roy Thoma

Sandy and I decided to start Valentines Day early. We flew to Sedona to on Feb 13, had lunch at the Mesa Grill at the airport, then hiked the full "airport loop trail".  ...


RV-8 trip from VA to WA ...FlyinTiger

It is always a pleasure to travel across the greater United States of America in an RV. Every time it is different. Weather, destination and mission have driven me along different paths. This time there was a need to get a newly purchased RV-8 from 53VG, Salmon Farm Airport, in Virginia, across the Chesapeake Bay, over the Appalacian Mountains, over the plains of the Mid-West, through the Rockies and finally across the Cascades, into the Seattle area for it's new home on Boeing Field (KBFI).

The journey began right here on VAF, with a casual private message and note in a "wanted" ad right there in the classifieds. It is a fixed pitch, 180 hp RV-8 with a Garmin G3X and all the bells and whistles. There was a long line of interested pilots. It helps to have a commercial pilot's license and some serious cross country experience. Insurance requires tail wheel time and time flying an RV-8.

Overall the trip took 17.8 hours of flight time over the course of three days. I stopped short of the Seattle side of the mountains to meet the new owner for transition training. This RV-8 has rudder extensions for the back seat pilot, a throttle and stick. I don't know how many have completed their transition training in an RV-8, but the new owner and I gave it a go. The back seat of an RV-8 was where I flew my first RV hours with a CFI RV-8 owner before I solo'd in my RV-4 I bought flying years ago. Being a CFI and tail wheel instructor helped and the new owner had 350 hours in a J-3 Cub. We accomplished his training over three long days. Technically advanced aircraft, leaning, RV-style wheel landings and cross country flying/planning were all accomplished and the new owner solo'd late in the morning on the 3rd day. We then ferried the -8 to Seattle (KBFI) since we had a break in the weather allowing us to get it there.


Milestone: 1400 Hrs ...John Bender RV-12


Initial Contact ...Sanch627

Just like to say hi, I'm beginning a build of a RV4, I built a 8 years ago an am looking forward to the 4. Sence the 4 design is 40 yrs old this year. No prepunch or match hole construction, it's a homebuilders delight.. semi retired from nursing after 27 yrs.. stay tuned .


800hr General Engine Inspection Pics ...Steve Melton

nothing needed. cleaning the air filter thru the inlet. this has to be heresy.


Status Report ...David Paule -3B

Aft Deck & Fairing Compound Curve.  The fairing mold is nearly there. I'm currently working on eliminating waves in the surface from the sanding. Even though I'm using longboard sanding, I'm still getting them. Fill and sand, and they're improving.  The photo shows the compound curve in the surface that I'd mentioned.  ...


Forward Fuse Top ...PilotjohnS 9A

The forward fuselage of my slider is a little tricky.

There is a slight bend in the sub panel near the bottom; without this, the fit is terrible. I marked the bend, used an 18" brake on the outside, and a block of wood clamped to the table for the center section's bend.  ...


My RV Weekend


Flying Canuck

DeeCee 57



RV-4 Elevator Damage ...mfalcon

We've had some minor damage to our port elevator due to a pole falling from a hangar roof. Thankfully the damage appears relatively minor (it initially appeared there was no damage), but there is a crease in the lower skin next to the trim tab and a small crack. Any hints or suggestions on how best to deal with the crease (we'll be stop drilling the crack), or do you think replacing the elevator skin completely would be best? Will be speaking to Vans support for advice too...



February 21, 2020.  Issue #5,024.
Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.
(Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Ed Hicks photo


The RV6A and I love Winter ...AlexPeterson

Well, maybe one of us does... Some ramblings:

Aside from being cold when pulling planes out, while risking life and limb on ice and dealing with snow, winter is a wonderful time to fly. I haven't cleaned bugs since about late October. One hasn't truly experienced their RV in maximum climb mode until you've flown with really cold temperatures. Today it wasn't too cold, with the surface temperature about 10F, light winds and clear sky. I should have done a screen capture (I was too busy grinning, even after 18+ years...), but the VSI was between 2500 and 3000fpm, at a pitch angle of about 15 degrees sustained. I hit pattern altitude (about 1900msl) just after leaving the airport boundary:  ...


Lisa Nimmo of AntiSplat ...Rest in Peace

"...I am so saddened to have to let everyone know that this last week I lost my wonderful wife, lover, soulmate, and mother of my children. Her kind and loving little heart just stopped beating as she passed away in my young daughters arms,  with no pain or suffering, and I am certain that was just where she wanted to be.

She was my flying buddy and attended many events, most airshows etc., and was able to acquire literally hundreds of friends and acquaintances associated with aviation.

Thank God we have a very large and wonderful family that is there for our children and myself at this sad and trying time in our lives. I'm not so sure we could do it without them and their support. Our world is greatly diminished with her passing, but she will always be with us until we see her again. The memorial services will be held this coming Monday, 10 AM, 2/24/20 at Bobbitt Funeral Home, 1299 east Highland Ave. San Bernardino 92404. She will be interned on a lovely, beautiful spot at Hillside Memorial Park in Redlands, California until I am chosen to go join her.

You all take care, and cherish every single moment you have with the people you love.

Best to all,



RV-14 Throttle Quad Prototype ...Aircraft Specialty

Here is what we are currently working on in our secret lab! Many thanks to Mike L for helping us out with the beta testing.


Fleeing the cold! Tropical RV Winter Getaway ...NovaBandit

As I'm typing this, it is 111 degrees F colder than where I was this time last week (92f vs -19f)! Why do I live here??

We loaded the kiddos and an unreasonable amount of baggage into the flying family truckster, and flew down to a FLORIDA BEACH HOUSE that we rented with some others from our RV10 family!

Here is the first (of two) trip recap videos!


Mission Creep ...airguy

I think I need help, I need to talk to some people or maybe start going to group meetings or something. I may have a problem.

So I took my airplane down for annual inspection, and SDS EM-5 installation. That in itself is a big upgrade and required cutting a new hole in the panel for the engine controller. But that hole was going where my current passenger warning is printed on the vinyl overlay on the panel. So I would need a new vinyl overlay to put it somewhere else. Since I have to pull the entire panel to lay up the vinyl on it, I might as well make some other changes at the same time - so I ended up completely recutting the panel to shift things around to make more real estate, and added the Dynon autopilot controller and knob panel while I was at it.

Then this evening I was just doing some deep-diving into the manuals for some of the hardware already in, and soon to be going in, to my plane... And I realized that I can move a couple contacts around to different locations on my Dynon EMS module, and free up a high impedance Class C input on pin 31 to accept a variable voltage signal, that would allow me to put a high pressure transducer on my oxygen bottle and magically teleport the bottle pressure onto my Dynon screens for monitoring - no more twisting around in the seat and squinting at the 1/4" gauge on the bottle while in flight and trying to guess how accurate it was. Now I can set an alert on the Dynon to tell me when the oxygen is running low, and I can see the actual pressure value. And then I went onto the Digikey website and bought the Honeywell transducer to do that. It'll be here on Monday.

This has to stop at some point. I mean, literally - I'm out of available inputs on the Dynon system now, and they don't make an expansion module for more. It has to stop. I have to finish this and get it back in the air.



February 20, 2020.  Issue #5,023.
Of note:  The Mothership has (7) open employment positions.  A/C Systems and Structure Assembler, TIG Welder, CNC Punch Press Operator, Drafter/Technical Writer, Engineer, Sustaining Engineer and Manufacturing Engineer (link FMI).
(Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

"Buck's" replacement comes home ...Av8safe

Well, the story finally comes to a happy conclusion, as I returned home on Friday with my new RV-7 to replace the one I had a deer strike with in November.

This gem was crafted by a retired orthopedic surgeon who was an electrical engineer before he went on to medical school. Roger is now 86 years young and slowing down a bit...I am honored to become the new steward of his fine work.

Many thanks to those in this community who helped me along the way. Especially thankful to DR for putting my story front and center when I first shared it on the forum. [ed. My pleasure Sir! dr]  That lead to Oly Olson reaching out and helping facilitate the match, thanks Oly. Then there is Vic, who came out for a second time to do the pre-buy. You cannot help but be impressed with Vic and his passion for safety and this sport. Finally, thanks to my friend Terry who was with me when I took out the deer (and first RV) for agreeing to come down again and fly off my insurance familiarization with me.

Beautiful weather Friday in the Midwest for the solo flight home...but a tad chilly even for a Minnesota guy! Went up today to do some pattern work and still smiling as I make this post!

Now it's time to learn some more about this beautiful bird and make some great memories.



RV Flight Time-lapse Video ...Michael Jensen RV-7A

Heres another time-lapse of a recent flight to get some cheap gas. Filmed with the GoPro Hero 8 and undistorted in post.

Bonus points to anyone that can guess the airports.


Build Update ...Todd N. RV-14A

Rudder assembly Part 2b
I put a strip of painter's tape down the trailing edge then labeled the holes 1 through 10 and then repeating. I also taped the edges of my back riveting plate to avoid scratching, even though I have already rounded them off and polished them.

Now for the task I had been apprehensive about. I loaded the holes with rivets, applied rivet tape and flipped it over. Starting in the center, I partially set every tenth rivet following the instructions in Section 5. After the first few, I started to get the hang of the process, starting perpendicular to the back rivet plate, then smoothly pivoting to perpendicular to the trailing edge wedge in one motion. After each round of rivets, I eyeballed the trailing edge to ensure it didn't start creeping out of straightness. So far so good.

After getting all the rivets 90% set, I went back over the trailing edge and finished setting them in the same every-tenth pattern, checking for straightness along the way. I ran my fingers along the rivet line, finishing any that felt like they were proud of the surface more than others. The final results turned out better than I expected. I suspect the tank sealant and the leisurely cure time helped keep everything together well during the riveting. Nothing shifted at all. Any tank sealant that squeezed out was cleaned up with acetone, and the rudder was put on the shelf with the other mostly-completed parts. On to priming the elevator and tailcone parts and waiting for spring. In the meantime I am starting on a PVC tubing spray booth in the garage.


My RV Weekend ...Flash

Quick 3 ship run for petrol to Lago Vista on a beautiful day! Only bad thing was no pics of the photo ship!



February 19, 2020.  Issue #5,022. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

My RV Weekend: Max's Glider Rating  ...RV8Squaz




Garmin Pilot v10.0 ...announced.

Below are a few highlights:

  • With the latest Garmin Pilot upgrade, pilots experience a near-seamless transition between Garmin avionics and the Garmin Pilot app when performing common functions
  • Pilots now have the option to load or activate departures, arrivals and instrument approach procedures within the Americas
  • Using the vertical planning feature within Garmin Pilot, pilots can more easily input and adhere to crossing restrictions in a flight plan
  • The new visual procedure selector allows pilots to simultaneously view departures, approaches or arrivals on a map alongside a flight plan so it's easier to visualize and select the most appropriate procedure
  • Pilots now have the flexibility to easily build customized holding patterns within the app
  • Route data packages within Garmin Pilot help ensure pilots have downloaded all of the data required for a flight plan
  • The newest release of Garmin Pilot on Apple mobile devices is available immediately

Video: https://youtu.be/utQXERhBf_s


Panel Status ...kiljoy RV-14


Why we have engine monitors ...douglassmt

I haven't posted in a while but thought this might be of interest. I fly an RV-10 Aerosport Power IO-540 with a slick mag and a Lightspeed Plasma III ignition. Everything has worked flawlessly for 1300 hours until a recent flight. I didn't notice the behavior when it first started but on a subsequent flight I was descending into my airport, lean of peak but still plenty of throttle, when I noticed the #6 EGT went into the yellow - high temp while all the others were normal. I downloaded the data and saw this:


Panel Milestone ...Bill Woods 7A

Arrived today, Got plenty wiring to do now. Steinair is the best.


My RV Weekend ...bruceh

Flew up to Santa Monica on Sunday to deliver some repaired wing tips. Got those installed, and we were interrupted by a pre-TFR fly in of the Marine One (sans POTUS) and the backup helicopter, along with 3 Ospreys. It took forever for them to open up the field again for arrivals/departures. I was idling in the run up area for 30 minutes!


Pine Bluff, AR Formation Pics ...Mark Burns


Upcoming Webinar ...vic syracuse

Just a reminder that I will be giving another EAA RV maintenance webinar this coming Wednesday, Feb 19, at 7 PM CST. I will highlight some more areas, clarify some common questions from the last webinar, and discuss new issues not covered in the prior webinar. Hope to see you there!



February 18, 2020.  Issue #5,021. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

What did you do with your RV this Weekend (2/15-2/16) ...crabandy

I was fully planning on working on my master bath renovation project but, the wife needed her glasses at work and we were out of dishwasher tabs. Pie and I loaded up to deliver the glasses and stop by Wal-mart for dishwasher tabs. On the way out of Wal-mart I saw several familiar cars at Burger King for the 3ish coffee break. The hangar talkers usually meet at BK in the afternoon and Pie was able to score a couple "sympathy" dollars to buy a soda.

A little hangar talk along with mid 50's led to "I probably better stir the oil" and a .5 flight with Pie, calm winds and a greased on wheelie to finish it off.


Make sure to check your tire pressure! ...greg_gfeller

I feel the need to tell this story so others don't have to.

First of all a little context. I had been laid up with ankle surgery and had not flown for the past 3 months. My goal after being released to full weight bearing was to get my 12 back in the air before my condition inspection which expired February 1st and charge the Dynon back up battery so I could do the annual battery test. Excited to finally get back in the air on a clear cold January day I preflighted the plane, glanced at the tires (which always look low under the wheel pants and went flying). After getting the backup battery charged I returned to the airport and landed. Upon landing I noticed the plane decelerated faster than normal and taxied off the runway. While taxiing down the taxi way my plane made several 360 degree turns around my left main landing gear. I thought it was my brakes but instead it was my completely flat left main tire and I was grinding up and cracking my wheel pant. Laying on a cold frozen taxiway trying to remove my wheel pant was a total pain, but finally got it removed. Since I didn't have any appropriate way to jack up the wheel and was blocking the taxiway I was lucky the airport staff was able to assist me lifting the wing by the handhold on the end of the wing while I shoved a dolly underneath the flat wheel. Wasn't at all keen on how we lifted the airplane but all went well and towed the airplane back to the hangar. Turns out I spun the tube. So after a new tube, some fiberglass repair and color matched paint I am back in the air. It would have so much easier to lay on the cold hangar floor and check tire pressure before the flight!


Turner Billingsley's RV-14A Power Module

...Van's part #AV-500003)


IAS Error ...RV7A Flyer

Flying next to a friend in his new-to-him RV-6A (I believe he has an O-320 FP prop), I asked why we were going so damned slow...I was showing 100-110 KIAS, and he was showing 20 knots or greater *higher*. I *know* my airspeed is correct, by comparison with numerous other RVs in formation flights, at all sorts of altitudes and power settings. So this is a problem with his airspeed. But what?

BOTH his mechanical ASI and his D-10A were showing the same IAS. He has just had a pitot/static/XPDR cert done and passed, but I know this won't detect installation error that can only be found in flight.

He performed some stalls in order to find the *indicated* stall speed, for safety of flight on T/O and LDG, and says he stalled at around 65-70 KIAS, clearly way too high.

What could cause this? FWIW, his static ports are flush rivets, but I've only heard of problems with flush rivets causing an IAS that is too *low*, and it's almost impossible to think of an installation error with the *pitot* tube that would make it read that high.

Anyway, looking for troubleshooting advice to help out a buddy...TIA!


Upcoming Webinar ...vic syracuse

Just a reminder that I will be giving another EAA RV maintenance webinar this coming Wednesday, Feb 19, at 7 PM CST. I will highlight some more areas, clarify some common questions from the last webinar, and discuss new issues not covered in the prior webinar. Hope to see you there!


New Guy: Initial Contact ...Gregg Larson (Canton, GA)

I'm just beginning my RV 7A build, though I purchased a second hand nearly completed empennage kit and wing kit. I'm looking for someone in my area who might be interested in being a mentor for me as I get started.


Trial Fit ...David Paule -3B

The aft deck needs three holes cut in it for access or lightening or something. The location of those depends on where the horizontal stabilizer goes. With the aft deck clecoed to the longerons, I pulled the stabilizer down from the rafters and clamped it into position. Except for fore and aft, I made no effort to align it. I even left the protective bubble-wrap on.

The forward flange of the inboard nose ribs on both sides are flush with the skin. These interfered with the aft top skin, the turtledeck. The interference was small, maybe .090 spanwise and perhaps 1/4 inch long, and just on the bottom of the stabilizer. I trimmed these with a Dremel and a sanding drum, finishing with a small fine file.

Later, talking with my mentor, I learned that this is common on RV-4s and Rockets, too.

After clamping the stabilizer in place I measured where the various mounting parts will have to go and took this photo.

While I was tempted to bring the vertical stabilizer down from the rafters and clamp it on, too, I refrained. We all know where that would lead: lining these parts up and hanging the elevators and rudder. One of these days, but not today. Instead, I put the horizontal stabilizer back up in the rafters for now.



February 17, 2020.  Issue #5,021.
  This past Friday I was offered a part time right seat gig a couple mornings a week at a local DFW simulator in their Embraer Phenom 100/300 program.  Maybe the occasional evening.  This to aid in my lifelong quest for continuous family food and shelter, and hopefully some retirement.  So this will be concurrently-running job #3 (VAF 80%, PC-12NG side work 5%, Sim 15%).  The life of a self employed person is never dull <g>.
  The second 'interview' was 0700 Friday in the sim complete with V1 cut and ILS - managed not to embarrass myself too badly (first V1 cut in a modern sim).  Exciting stuff!  The Caravan side jobs last year laid great groundwork.
  If I'm honest, our family's RV-6 glass panel really did help prepare me for this - a LOT of that Phenom panel felt very familiar.  I thought he was crazy when two years ago a friend said if that I got my instrument and commercial in my RV I could easily get side work.  I guess all this is food for thought if you're living in the movie 'Office Space' like I was back in the day.  I very much did use my RV, which I thought was a hobby for years and years, as a vehicle to take a sort of career side tangent.  Another unintended consequence of getting into the world's greatest hobby!!!  You never know where RVs will lead ;^).
  This sim side gig should not affect VAF in any way, but it will give me possible side work opportunities down the road (you can 'cash in' 80 sim sessions for a PIC type rating).  Self-employed long enough to jump at those things that reduce financial and career risk.  Grateful and Blessed.  Grateful and Blessed.
  Hope you had a wonderful RV weekend. 
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Ready for First Engine Start ...kbalch

Ready for the first engine start yesterday. Inspection is scheduled for next week (2/20).


Trek to Nogales - More AZ Flying ...Capt Sandy

Ahoy VAF'ers!
More Arizona fun! Roy and I heard from a (Cessna pilot) friend that its an easy trek across the border to Nogales. The possibility of finding good street tacos appealed, so we headed that way.
Very fun to fly by Kit Peak observatory.
There's no courtesy car at the Nogales airport. I negotiated a round trip taxi fare. There is a circle drive where folks are dropped off and picked up at the border crossing (lots of shuttle buses to Tucson). Super easy to walk across the border - in fact no one looked at our passports.
We walked around town, did a little shopping, and found a terrific restaurant for lunch. We did not get tacos. Always a good sign when we are the only gringos in the place.
Lunch for both of us was $12 (plus tip)
Purchased two Mexican "hoodies" $20
Taxi to and from $40
Fuel... well, let's swag $75 (round trip from Ajo)
Pretty close to a $100 hamburger, but tons more fun.
(Note - getting back to the U.S. was not so easy. Global Entry cards made it easier.)
On our way back we flew over a mine just south of Tucson, that was so huge, the entire state of Delaware would probably fit inside. There are many open pit mines in Arizona, but that was definitely one of the biggest we've seen.


Valentines Day ...crabandy

I know there's a thread around here somewhere about RV tools being used about the house but I couldn't find it.

We tend to avoid the crowds on V-day and cook at home. I destroyed the kitchen shears trimming fiberglass years ago.......Happy Valentines Day to all the significant others that put up with this airplane hobby!


RV-3B Status Report ...David Paule

Waiting for drywall compound, aka "mud," to dry means that I needed to find something else to do for a while. The F-319 (or it might be F-317 or F-318, it's called all of those. But on drawing 22, it's F-319) aft deck was cut out a while ago but not drilled for installation. It's intended to be riveted to the longerons and the F-309 bulkhead. On my plane, it'll be attached with screws so that I can remove it for access to the area.

I measured where the holes should be and marked some to avoid drilling until later, just in case the horizontal stabilizer blocks a portion. Then since the .040 aft deck was opaque and I couldn't verify the longerons under it, I overlaid a bit of that .030 Lexan that I'm using as patterns and transferred the hole locates to that. Placing it over the longerons, it was obvious that I needed to shift the hole locations just a bit outboard for better edge distance. No problem, since I could see exactly where to put them.

The .030 Lexan is sourced at McMaster. It comes with a matt plastic protective layer, much like the blue vinyl we enjoy so much, except that it's translucent. It easily holds the Sharpie marks and the sheet is stiff enough that It makes superb patterns.

Once the Lexan template was overlaid on the aft deck, I used my handy Verits optical hole punch to punch through the Lexan into the aft deck. The next step was to drill the holes to #50. Why #50? Because that's small enough that if necessary, I can walk the hole to a slightly better location, and also because a Sharpie just fits and I was able to mark the longerons with the hole locations.

Removing the aft deck, I checked the hole locations on the longerons and verified that they were acceptable. Then I pilot-drilled through both the aft deck and the longerons with a #4The large access holes still need to be made.


Dynon is Looking For People ...Dynon

We're growing!

Dynon currently has career opportunities available across the company.

Open positions include:
Software Engineer in Guidance, Navigation & Control
Software Development Engineer
Aircraft Mechanic
Avionics Repair Technician
Staff Accountant
Supply Chain Manager
Facilities Specialist   ...


RV-8 and the Day Off Work ...ArlingtonRV

Monday 2/10 was far too nice a day to spend at work, so I decided to call in healthy and go flying instead. It was the best day of the year, so far. We went to Richland for lunch, but took a different route. We went south to Monroe, Duvall, Carnation and past Snoqualmie Falls and followed I-90.

With all the rain we have had this year there was a lot of water on the ground in those areas. It turned out to be a really nice trip.


New optional kit: ACCESS PANEL KIT for 7/9/10/14 ...mothership

Hi All,

There's a new optional kit available to order form the Van's web store as of last night. We have several in stock now. It's called "ACCESS PANEL KIT" and is designed for use on the RV-7/9/10/14. It can be used during new construction, or as a retrofit installation (in which case you'll drill out two applicable rivets so you can fit the template).

The kit sells for $19.00, so let's face it, it's a freakin' bargain. Try that, certified world!

This particular kit was initially the work of our friend Joe Blank, who worked in technical support here at Van's and unfortunately passed away a few years ago. We were able to pick up his work and finish it off so we can share it with you.

This kit was created in response to customer desires/requests over the years. Our engineering team has worked recently to select and deliver a handful of these smaller enhancement requests when they can find a few cycles (and that doesn't happen often - did I mention we are hiring engineers?) with the goal of delivering options that people can choose from if they wish. Other recent examples include this kit, the cowl louvers kit, the AHARS mounting bracket kit, RV-12 step plugs and optional style throttle handle, etc. You'll find those on our web store in the "New Products" section.

What this kit does: Allows the builder to put a couple of access panels in the skin ahead of the windscreen, which can be removed in the event there's a need to get into the area between the firewall and the subpanel located at the back of the avionics bay. Some builders want this so they can get access without having to contort themselves upside down under the instrument panel while doing maintenance. You do need to use a sealant when installing the panels, so the primary tradeoffs here are easier access vs. the potential for leaks if not properly sealed when closed up.

The instructions page (OP-43) is linked from the kit's web store page, and that document should answer any questions you have about how one applies this kit and how the parts fit, etc. There are template instructions for each of the airplanes it applies to, all explained in the OP-43 document.

Again, this kit is designed for and includes templates for the RV-7/7A, RV-9/9A, RV-10, and RV-14/14A.


Mothership Closed Monday



February 14, 2020.  Issue #5,020.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

N1402 is Officially an Airplane! ...azflyer21

-814 Days (QB)
-Several Pints of Blood
-Gallons of Sweat
-Many Sleepless Nights
-Threw-in-the-towel (numerous times)
-Maybe even a few tears

100% satisfaction receiving my Airworthy Certificate!


Time to Build ...asw20c

I figure it's time to re-calibrate my expectations again. I'm building an RV14A slow-build, and currently have over 1100 hours expended, and I'm only just now getting close to finishing the wings. Granted I had to build the flaps twice and lost about 3 months doing so, but the Van's website says the modern matched-hole RV14 kit might take someone 1000-1300 hours to complete. Based on my experience so far, that is wildly optimistic. I consider myself a very careful builder, but not obsessive. In other words, I want everything to be airworthy, but gave up on perfect a long time ago. Mine will be a very capable aircraft (i.e. autopilot and fully IFR), but I'm not adding any capability that most other builders aren't. So far the only thing I've done that is "off plans" is installing the heated pitot with AOA, and yes, that ended up taking a lot more time than I would have guessed. I'm also priming everything that is interior to the aircraft, so I know that is adding to the build-time, but I figure it will be well worth the investment when I'm too old to fly anymore and it comes time to sell.
Looking ahead to what is left (fuselage, engine, avionics), and basing it on my progress to date, I'm guessing I will have at least 2000 hours or more before it leaves the ground. I'm even planning on leaving it unpainted until after it has been flying and all the bugs worked out so paint isn't factored into the build time. So, what's a realistic build time for the 14A? Just curious what other builders expended now that we have several 14s flying.
Empennage Complete Except for Tips
Wings Underway


Micro Consistency Update ...Trent Stewart

Thought i would update the thread with my massive learning curve - satisfying when i get a nice smooth surface though!


Erratic RPM sensor - Saga continues could it be the Lightspeed

Ok am so perplexed by this. I believe my RPM sensor is built into the Plasma II+ CDI with Direct Crank Sensor. Would that be correct. I haven't not been able to trace a RPM sensor anywhere else. I am running a Slick Mag and the Light speed. for the 4-500 hours my RPM gauge was spot on, now it has been slowly becoming more erratic, now bouncing between 0-3000 (it is def just just sensor/monitor, and not prop). It is wired through my GRT 4000 and and the GRT Horizon WS screens with the first problems showing at the GRT 4000. I have cleaned all the spark plug wires and thought that might have fixed it but to no avail. Now I am thinking it may be the Direct Crank sensor and a bad electrical lead (however the engine is running great and mag checks are normal).

What am I missing? Sometimes I hate electronics.



Panel Porn

100% FAB'd center console upgrade for RV-4.  Randy Richmond's work on James Walsh RV-4 panel improvements.  Fuses inside...

click to enlarge


Mothership Closed Monday


Antenna Question ...asw20c

Q: I figure there are folks on this forum that understand antenna voodoo and can explain something that makes no sense to me. When I started on my slow-build wings, I knew that I wanted ground-based navaids as a backup for satellite navigation and approaches; i.e I wanted to be able to navigate by VOR and make ILS approaches if I had to. Stein was happy to sell me a Bob Archer VOR antenna that fits in the wingtip (pick one) that they said would do VOR navigation and ILS approaches.
Fast forward and I'm now at the stage where it is time to install the antenna. I did a quick internet search and found that VOR frequencies are 108-118 MHz, and the instructions that came with the antenna say it covers that range and more (I think 108-136MHz) so I know it is good for both VOR navigation as well as localizers. However glide slope frequencies are 329-335 MHz which clearly this antenna was not designed to receive.
I called Stein today to ask them about this and they said that if you have a modern navigator, like a GTN650, that it is able to sort out the localizer and glide slope frequencies from this one antenna and that they said other people have been using these same antennas with no complaints.
Can anyone explain this? Is there a misunderstanding between me and Stein? Can anyone here vouch for the fact that they have one of these antennas and can make an ILS approach? i.e. a PRECISION approach?

A: The Glide slope frequency is near the third harmonic of the localizer frequency and antennas perform fairly well on odd harmonics, an antenna designed for 108 to 118 MHz will also be useful on 329.3 to 335.0 MHz.
The ground based Glide Slope antenna beams most of the 40 watt signal toward the aircraft which is only about 5 miles away so it does not take much of an antenna to receive the signal.

A: As Don said, antennas that are resonant at half-wavelength are also resonant at 3/2, 5/2, etc., wavelengths, so they work well at 330 MHz. The 50 ohm matching network may be off a bit, but, as Don said, the GS is relatively strong. There are 1000's of flying airplanes with dipoles for 110 MHz up on their tails that also use the same antenna for 330 MHz GS. My SL30 doesn't even have a separate GS antenna input - it expects to use the nav antenna. BTW, I have an Archer in my wingtip, it works fine - vor, loc, and GS.



February 13, 2020.  Issue #5,019. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Engine Failure Video: RV-12 ...Felix1973

Hello fellow RV-12 pilots:

Yesterday I had an engine failure right after takeoff. I turned around, declared emergency and landed her safely. It was pretty scary though.

This happened at 300ft and all engine instruments were in green. I did do pre-flight and run-up and had no prior indication for that. Ambient temperature was 82 degrees with 70% humidity. I am running 93 auto-gas.

I uploaded a short video of that incident I would like to get your feedback, maybe anyone can determine from sound of the engine what kind of failure this may have been?



Emergency tire repair in the boondocks????

Having a flat tire in an RV in an out-of-way place can be a nightmare...envisage no tools, no jacking equipment, no spare tube....and maybe no people prepared to provide assistance.

Is it possible that any of the current automotive tire repair kits could be used to fix a puncture temporarily so that the aircraft could be flown home or to an airfield where there is appropriate maintenance support. We're talking here about tires with tubes, which is what most of the RV fleet has.

Has anyone had success with any of the tire sealants such as Slime etc?

I'm interested in all comments on this subject.


My RV Weekend ...Roy Thoma

Sierra visited us in Ajp for the first time. Friday, when asked if she would like to fly over the mine to see it she said SURE! First time Sandy or I can remember her going for a flight "for fun" rather than to get somewhere.

Saturday I flew to Copperstate and had a nice time. The dirt parking lot was dusty, not rough. It was nice to say HI to Shane from uAvionics and Kevin from Tosten Manufacturing (aircraft stick grips). Nice low key show.


RV7 IO-360 M1B Engine Mount Query


I have the IO-360 M1B as supplied by Vans with the matching firewall forward kit and I am currently bolting up the engine to the mount. On the bottom 2 isolators and mounting lugs they are not sitting flat as the oil sump casting sticks out past the flat engine mounting face as you can see in the photo attached.

In my firewall forward kit I received the 4x isolator kits which each included a large flat washer which is under the head of all 4 bolts and mounts, and then separately with the engine mounting bolts in the Vans kit there were 2 slightly smaller diameter large washers included, as you can see in the second photo.

My thoughts are that I could use these 2 washers on the front side of the BOTTOM isolators to space the engine mounting lugs out and clear the sump casting .. but I am conscious I could be adding up-thrust by doing so.

What are you guys doing with this?



Houston area monthly lunch (February 2020)

The time cometh again. Aviator's Grill at DWH, this Saturday (15th), 11:30.  Last month we had a pretty good turnout - let's keep it going!


Panel Update

Progress slow due to the cold I had, some fam vehicle issues I'm working on fixing, the normal computer things and more.

Tony Kirk sent me an updated 507 mount pic slightly lowered to facilitate easier wiring.  Like it!  Maybe next week I can make a dent in the project some more - the Wx here has been lousy and cold for days (rain finally stopped Wed afternoon).  That hangar is cold.



February 12, 2020.  Issue #5,018. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Quick flight to the OR coast to see the king tides from the air...mill2978 RV-8

During a break in the clouds on Sunday AM I got a quick flight out the coast to see the surf. Density altitude was reporting at -2300ft, the Dirty Bird lept off the ground.


RV-10 Status Report ...andrewtac

Getting started, hopefully picture comes through


Tail Wheel Fairing Update ...lucaperazzolli

Hi everyone,

yesterday I finished the tests of the fairing and from now the company is ready to ship it.

First of all, I checked the first pre-production (X) - great in shape but a little too light. Strong but with vibration (0.22 lbs/100gr.)

I added some American Tape and vibration disappear.

Here the videos

Takeoff : https://youtu.be/JNRstSSjuxo
Gs and Vne : https://youtu.be/tUjjSdDzmeI
landing: https://youtu.be/G41yInZ0z6A

Then we added more layer to increase the weight and after some prototypes and flights, the right one is #2 wit a final weight of 0.35 lbs/158gr.).


Taken just prior to first flight ...leok

Keep workin'. Like getting old, one day you look up from the work bench and realize you are done!

I have 15 1/2 hours on the plane. It would be more if the weather would cooperate


Nice connector for stick wiring ...Draker

After some searching, I think I found a connector I'm happy with for wiring the Ray Allen grip on my -7's removable co-pilot stick. My requirements were:
Both male and female connectors to fit entirely inside the stick tube
At least 6 contacts
Reasonably weathertight

Enter the Switchcraft EN3 series. 6 soldered contacts, keyed so they fit one way, and locking. And everything fits right inside the stick grip.



February 11, 2020.  Issue #5,017. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Fresh Paint ...Aviaman 9A (KLOU, Louisville KY)


What RV For Me? (New Member)

Hey all,

Been lurking for a while and finally joined to start posting. Recently graduated college with my mechanical engineering degree and have started work. Im working on my private pilots license still so building may seem like a jump to some so let me explain.....I have always had a passion for DIY and building.I have pretty extensive experience restoring cars and building a wide array of things by hand (current project is the renovation of my first home). New and unknown things are a challenge I enjoy diving into and learning. As such I want to build my first plane to have the experience and learn. I am well connected in my local aviation community via my work (in aviation) and have several people who have built many planes to access for help and guidance. I wanted to come here to ask a few questions as I begin to gather and plan to start this project in the coming year or so. Below are my thoughts and points to consider for picking the right RV:

1) My general mission for the plane will be fast cross country, I live in Ohio and have friends in DC, Michigan, New Mexico, and Florida and want to make the time gap between us as small as possible, so speed is a strong desire. Most flights will be solo but I want the ability to take a passenger in relative comfort and still fit a bag for each of us for the weekend.

2) I plan to get my IFR rating after completing my private and I want the plane to be a good IFR platform and am looking for suggestions for avionics.

3)I plan to take 5-6 years to finish the plane

4) Obviously I will probably be pretty low hour when the RV is finished ~200-500 im guessing based on my plans to fly rentals available to me. So the RV I build needs to be friendly to someone without 1000s of hours.

5) I plan to buy the kits in succession, that is I plan to buy one kit and as I build it I will save for the next. So the air frame will be paid for when complete but I need to figure out financing to afford engine, avionics and prop. I am an engineer so I have some means but im not in a position to rock up to lycoming with 37k in cash for an engine.

So I am looking for advice on what RV is right, and then what Avionics, engine, and prop to pair with that RV to best fit my mission as well as advice on how you paid for your project.


Panel with Lighting Now ...Dave Ford


3D Audio Yaw Cues ...Vac

To avoid an unintentional loss of control, the pilot has to properly control AOA, sideslip and energy. Our basic tone logic addresses AOA and energy; so recently, we've begun experimenting with 3D (stereo) audio cuing to move the tone with the ball in the slip/skid indicator to provide yaw (sideslip) cues.

Turns out the human brain is remarkably good at picking out the direction that a sound comes from. In this case, the Gen 2 box uses EFIS input or internal accelerometers to measure yaw, and when yaw is present "slew" the sound of the tone to provide the same information as the ball, i.e., what rudder input is required to eliminate sideslip. To minimize sideslip, you "step on the tone" the same way you "step on the ball" to center it up.

This feature requires either a stereo ICS or stereo headphones with bluetooth capability. The gain (i.e., how much and how perceptibly the tone moves) is adjustable. Since I'm used to flying the tone, my preference is subtle, accurate cueing; but some folks might prefer more (or less) perceptible shift.

Here's a short video clip of the system in action (you have to use a stereo speakers/headset/ear buds to hear the tone shift): https://youtu.be/3HRWToFA0dM. In some of the video, it's not possible to see the actual ball in the EFIS display due to lighting conditions, however I'm flying down-sun and my shadow on the instrument panel is helpful as is noting the motion of the aircraft nose relative to the horizon.

Thoughts or comments on the yaw cuing logic are appreciated.




Fuel line - severe abrasion

A second owner aircraft. previous A&P inspection. flying for a couple of years. owner inspection found severe fuel injected fuel line wear abrasion. in true honesty, perhaps the best inspector is the guy behind the stick. not much time left for this hose.


Canopy Latch - Supertracks ...SuperCubDriver

I had the Supertracks Canopy Track Extension laying around for over a year now. My prop is removed for an overhaul so I thought this is a good time to do the installation.
It all went smooth however I'm missing a canopy latch to hold the canopy open a few inches during warm weather taxi, the one I had cannot be reused with the track extensions.
So I came up with two solutions, here is the one I finally realized:

I reamed the WD-644 canopy roller just a bit for a smooth inner hole. I then fabricated an aluminum slider which goes inside the canopy frame and is springloaded. It is hold in place with the AN525 screw and can slide a litle more than 1/8 of an inch. The slider is held in the up position with a springloaded round handle which locks itself in a small cutout in the canopy frame. Pulling the handle out a bit lets the slider pushed down by it's spring and a locking pin locks the canopy in a drilled hole to the C-657 Canopy Roller Track. The locking pin is actually a set screw and can be adjusted with an Allen key from the inside.


First Flight at Jay Pratt's RV Central


My RV Weekend

I flew my homeward commute on Friday afternoon in the Carolina ugliness that Catmandu mentioned in his post.

Preflight was interesting in the high wind. I had to think about which tiedown to leave for last so I could unhook it and scramble into the cockpit to get my feet on the brakes.

Fully moderate turbulence as forecast but it slackened a bit west of Winston (INT) which reduced the workload for about 15 minutes. It started picking back up as I approached the mountains. The Mt. Mitchell complex looked down right menacing. Dark. Rocks all the way into the shredded cloud overcast.

I hedged south of my normal route to distance myself from them. I've been severely banged around by that set of mountains before.

Landed with little fanfare. The AVL valley really guides the wind straight down the runway. Parked and plugged in the heater.

This morning, on the commute out I matched my highest groundspeed at 230 kts with a glass smooth tailwind. Not nearly as high as others have done but it did make me smile.
Bill Pendergrass


Panel PIREP ...RV10Man 9A



February 10, 2020.  Issue #5,016.
  Spent the weekend battling a monster cold and up to my eyeballs in computer hardware and software.  Yuck!  Making progress on both.  Hope you had a nice RV weekend.  I'm hoping to work on the RV-6 panel this week some.
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

N84TH Flies! ...sapeloson

April 23rd, 2010 the tail kit for my RV8 arrived. After almost 10 years of building, she flew for the first time yesterday. Even though I have had my transition training and are quilified to fly her. I don't have the tailwheel experience nor the understaning of the intracacies of engine performance "should and should not's". Knowing I would have Vic Syracuse be the DAR, I had him come down a few years ago to make sure I was headed in the right direction.

Last month when I put in the paperwork for an inspection, I asked if he would be the "test pilot" for my maiden voyage, he agreed. Yesterday, I received my "airworthiness certificate" and Vic flew the plane. All was good! I plan to get a few more hours of training over the next few weeks and begin phase 1.

Huge shout out to Vic and "BaseLeg Aviation" for keeping me headed in the right direction! 


Dog Gone Good Day! ...petehowell

Saturday was cold and clear in America's favorite Twin Cities, so Bernie and I decided it might be a good time to turn liquid BTUs into decibels and fun. We even brought some friends along for the ride!  ...


RV-8 and the Day the Rain Ended (Briefly)...ArlingtonRV

It has been a really wet winter here in the upper left hand corner. Today was only the second day this year I have been able to fly. At that, I didn't think I would as it still didn't look very good, but Carl suggested we try and that turned out to be a good suggestion. Our original target turned out to be not practical, but an alternate presented itself along the way.

It was a bit gloomy looking getting back home, but it all worked out well.


What did you do with your RV this weekend (2/8 - 2/9'ish) ...SPX

So, what did you do with your RV this weekend? Flew it? Built some more of it? Just went to the airport to look at it? Let's hear it...

Me? I flew from my home airport (CRQ) to San Diego Brown Field (SDM) for the Young Eagles event. Flew two Young Eagles around San Diego, both who seemed to enjoy it very much, as did I. Everywhere I go, the RV attracts attention...

Flying the work airplane tomorrow, so that concludes my RV weekend. But, looking like two, possibly three RV flights coming up this week/next weekend, one of which will introduce a corporate pilot friend of mine to the RV. He thinks that he "might" want one. Who wants to take a bet on how long it'll be before he owns one??

Vlad's entry...




RV Stories: Guil Barros and his RV-9A ...mothership vid


Status Report ...David Paule -3B

Mud on Foam
After some more work shaping the foam, I was ready to seal it. The main issue was that I'd shaped it a bit too far on the sides in the middle, losing some of the compound curvature that you ca see in the top center. I needed to build that up and fill in some gaps that remained in the foam mold.

Drywall compound is the answer. It allows a build-up, the consistency is the same across multiple layers and that avoids sanding discontinuities. Also, it's cheap and I didn't have to mix it. Normally, I would not permit this anywhere on the plane, but since this is a mold, not a flight part, it's okay here.

This is after I'd just started on the right side. Previously, I'd verified that the drywall compound will stick to the foam. I'm just using a yellow plastic epoxy squeegee for this instead of my drywall tools. They can't handle compound curves.


James Aircraft Update

James Aircraft, home of the Sam James Holy Cowl has had a tremendous year of change. Mark and I, Mike, purchased the company from Sam and Will James in February of last year. I thought it would be good to update everyone on what's been happening with the company since we acquired it.

Mark and I both have nothing but gratitude to both Sam and Will James whom we purchased the company from. They are awesome people and have been there for us any time we have called for help or just to chat. Sam is now officially retired and refurbishing his boat at his home in Florida. Will moved to Vermont and is enjoying a life of nature, cold weather, and snow.

After purchasing the company, we moved everything from Sam's place in Florida up to Maryland and set up a new shop. By the time this was accomplished we were well into May and sitting on a huge backlog of orders that had accumulated since well before we took over. This presented some extreme challenges for us. Sam and Will spent a week training us in Florida but we still had a lot of learning to do on the product manufacturing techniques and on accelerating production throughput. All this had to be accomplished while more orders continued coming in.

In our first six months we manufactured and shipped a large number of cowls, plenums, induction systems, and wheel pants to customers all over the US, Canada, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. Our customers included builders of RV's, Mustang II, Glasstar, Glassair, Bearhawk, a variety of canards, Reno air racers, an air show performer and another kit manufacturer. With the help of our distributor's tech rep, we re-evaluated the resins and processes that we were using. One of the big changes that we made was to move from a very difficult to work with high temperature epoxy resin used on the plenums to a hard to find and obtain high temperature vinyl ester resin that retains the strength and heat characteristics while at the same time reducing weight and working viscosity. This helped significantly in wetting out the fabric and in improving product quality. It also lays the foundation for moving to vacuum infusion.

We have a number of changes and projects on our plate right now:
- We very quickly outgrew the relatively small space that we have been leasing in a large community hangar shared with a maintenance shop and aircraft owners. On March 1st we will be moving into our own substantially larger and fully insulated hangar which will house the business and our two RV's. While we may have to temporarily reduce our production volume during this move, the new facility will benefit us tremendously as we scale up our production volume.
- We are also collaborating with a couple builders in the design and development of a cowl for the RV14 and RV10. Computer aided design and simulation will be used during the development of these new products.
- We are sourcing new materials and resins to improve product quality and gain efficiencies in production.
- Several molds that we have been using need design improvements or are at the end of their useful life so we are making new molds that can be used for vacuum infusion of fiberglass and carbon fiber parts.
- We have plans to purchase a larger curing oven so that we properly ramp cure some of the resins we are moving to and also the ability to produce parts from carbon fiber prepreg.

At times we get an abundance of calls and emails which we try to get answered as quickly as possible. Please give us a ring back if you have not received a response from us in a reasonable time. It is difficult for us to break away while manufacturing parts so please leave us a message if you get our voicemail.

Thank you to all our customers and if you plan on becoming one please order them early in your build. There is currently about a six-month backlog in our production queue. We do not take any payment up front so it does not hurt to get your name on the production list as early as possible. We look forward to the future and to the opportunity to provide products that perform well and look great.

For more information please visit our website www.jamesaircraft.com


RV-8 25th Anniversary this year at OSH ...mothership

The RV-8 turns 25 years old this year, and Van's and EAA plan to work with members of the community to celebrate the anniversary at AirVenture in Oshkosh! Planning to fly your RV-8 to OSH this year? Sign up at this link to join in the celebration.

Note that when you're filling out the form if you see a reference to "RV-4" just double it and pretend it says "RV-8." That'll get fixed sometime soon.

We will announce events and plans here as they solidify.

This year will be the first one in many that we have had an RV-8 in our Van's booth. John Stahr plans to be at our booth his well-known and amazingly painted RV-8.

We look forward to seeing everyone there!


New RV-14A Build Site ...kbalch

While my project is nearly done (inspection scheduled for 2/20/20), I've only recently completed a build site for it. Prior to this, I've been posting photos to my personal Facebook page and sharing those posts with the Vans RV-14 group.

The URL is: RV-14a.com

Take a look; I hope it's of use to the many -14A builders still working on their projects.


Mounting a removable tablet in my 9A panel...MrNomad

I finally replaced my Lowrance with a Samsung tablet for ADSB In and Out using echoUAT, Avare, Garmin GTX 327, CMAX serial to Bluetooth, sniffing, wifi, Dynon 100, 180 & AP74.

I preferred a method which enabled me to remove the tablet after each flight for charging and update. Here's a pic.

Second, I prepared a WORD narrative during the gradual installation of ADSB. I am not an EE so lots of the jargon was foreign to me. As each step was accomplished, and as my understanding of the components improved, I constantly rewrote the narrative. Anyone with the same equipment who would like a copy of my narrative, PM me and I will send it out.


Flap motor arm cover ...Carl Froehlich

A good friend and RV-8A driver, Tom Doran, came up with this slick cover. It needs a #8 nutplate on the arm rest and a #6 nutplate on the rear seat bulkhead. It shares a #8 screw on the top aft of the side panel cover.

Attached is a template I used to make this out of 0.032" aluminum. 



February 7, 2020.  Issue #5,015.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Went Shopping 2 ...Vlad

Very recently I've moved. My village doesn't a grocery store residents usually drive to either Vernal or Green River WY to shop. I looked at the map checked the turbulence forecast and decided to fly to Lander KLND. Road to my airport was passable.  continue


SB 20-01-17 -- Safety Wire Engine Plugs (RV-12/12iS)

Van's has issued a short Service Bulletin, SB 20-01-17, which directs owners to safety-wire specific plugs on the Rotax engines used on the RV-12 and RV-12iS.

"The magnetic plug, oil pressure regulator plug, and oil tank drain plug on Rotax 912iS and 912ULS engines should be safety wired to prevent loosening."

We've also published the respective kit assembly instructions (KAI) pages, which now include the steps to safety-wire the plugs. The timeframe for execution of this service bulletin is at or before the next annual condition inspection (or next 100-hour inspection for RV-12s under a commercial 100-hour inspection program). This relatively simple set of steps to follow can be done when the engine cowling is off the aircraft.
For RV-12iS using Rotax 912iS engines, perform all steps on KAI page 46iS-11 to safety wire the engine plugs.
For RV-12iS using Rotax 912ULS engines, perform all steps on KAI page 46U-17 to safety wire the engine plugs.
For RV-12 using Rotax 912ULS engines, perform all steps on KAI page 46-22 to safety wire the engine plugs.


RV6A Dynon panel ...Zero4Zulu

I've been working on this RV6A rebuild on and off for many years. I mounted the Dynon HDX recessed in my panel with some custom machined brackets. Switch guards are my design and possible product for sale. Not sure whether that is worth while. Getting closer to flying this thing...


Seat Rail Advice ...rvanstory RV-10

Installing seat rails today. In the process I had 2 of the corner nut plates "bend" as I attempted to insert the screw to hold them down. Removing these is a little bit of a pain, not to mention the repair of the 2 corner nutplates which are in the worst possible position. Question.... Would you build on and simply have 2 missing screws (one out of left seat, one out of right seat), or would you take the time to replace? I'm leaning toward leaving as is, but thought I'd get others opinions first. Here's some pics...  more


Status Report

Slowly but surely Vlad.



February 6, 2020.  Issue #5,014.
  Friday's edition might be a couple hours delayed - I have an interview Thursday afternoon at a sim here in DFW to be a body-when-they-need-one if they have an odd number of students during dial-a-disaster sessions.  Throw the gear, read checklists, get 'em a new spoon if they drop theirs, etc.  Potential extra paper route $$$ and continued learning that the RV-6 started. 
  Haven't been on an interview in 27 years.  People still shake hands and smile, right?  Hope so. ;^)
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

From the vault. Smokey Ray in the 'X' (full size)


The Mystery of the Missing Brake Fluid ...bkervaski


Last October during a taxi I noticed my brakes getting mushy.

Upon inspection, the brake reservoir was empty.

This is the Beringer brake system.

I check the brake fluid at least once per month and the last check, a few weeks prior during the annual, it was the normal 3/4 full.

Here's the mystery: Beyond one tiny drop on the reservoir connection there was no leaked break fluid anywhere. I checked everything. Every connector in the airplane, the entire path of the lines. Nothing. Just a small drop on the back end of the reservoir but nothing pooled up. No stains in the plane or on the hangar floor. Nothing.

I didn't post then because I wanted to see if it would happen again and it hasn't, the reservoir has maintained 3/4.

The only conclusion I can reach is that perhaps there was a large volume of air somewhere in the system that finally cleared itself, however, prior to the magic disappearing brake fluid the brakes were working great, no issues and very consistent.



Tips needed for dimpling completed firewall ...dwranda

I am trying to hang my oil cooler and would like to put nut plates in so removal will be easier in the future. Want nut plates behind everything on the firewall to ease removing from the front only. I would need to dimple the firewall where there is the angle support behind it. Obviously I can't just use the dimpler that uses the rivet puller. Is it OK to countersink these even though the firewall is so thin?


Engine quit while practicing stalls ...Strappe

On a clear sunny Groundhog and Super Bowl Day I went for the first test flight to set up SV-AP-Panel and AoA system.
Barometer was 27.81, OAT 54℉ on the ground, winds calm.

2015 RV-12
Dynon Skyview Touch with 2 axis-AP
SV-Knob Panel (installed 5/2019)
Gen3 HACman mixture control (installed 7/2019)
Silent Hektik VR (installed 9/2019)
SV-AP-Panel (installed 11/2019)
AoA retrofit kit (installation finished 1/28/2020 - required removal of wings and fuel tank.
In level flight at 6500 MSL, OAT 29℉, electric fuel pump on, HACman mixture set to full rich, I lowered engine RPM to 3,000 and began first stall to calibrate AoA. With RPM at 2500, nose up steeply and near the stall, the engine RPM fell and the engine began to run roughly. I lowered the nose right at full stall, logged the stall in Skyview (of course), lowered the nose, eased throttle forward then leveled out after full recovery. Engine recovered full RPM and smooth running, but only after 30-45 seconds of roughness with nose level.
I decided to add a second stall to the calibration. Entry to stall was similar, but of a longer duration and at full stall, RPM began to fall and in 2-3 seconds, the engine quit. By full recovery from the stall, the prop stopped. Initial attempts at using the starter failed to restart the engine. I did the usual system checks (fuel on, electric pump audibly clattering away and making good fuel pressure, all active engine monitors in the green, HACman still full rich) and began to set up an approach and landing at the paved airport less than 3 miles away. My altitude by then was over 5,000 MSL, about 3500 AGL. After several more attempts with the starter, the engine roared to life after about 3 minutes in glider mode. I re-established cruise RPM slowly and leveled off, only to have the engine quit again. This time it restarted within 10 seconds or so of running the starter.
I flew back to my home airport (> 30 miles away) without further incident, did a full stall landing. The newly calibrated AoA and the stall warning agreed on the moment lift was lost. The engine ran fine during landing stall and taxi.

The electric fuel pump appears to be running fine, with good pressure at all times (although, I did not check it during the drop in RPM/rough running moments; only after stall recovery). The fuel tank was full at takeoff and I have no evidence of any leaks in the fuel system, but I have not yet removed the cowling or floor boards to do a full inspection. I completed last CI in late August and two carb floats were heavy, so I replace them with new.

I emailed Green Sky Adventures on Monday and am awaiting a reply. One local RV-12 owner with HACman installed has never noted any issues like this. Reading the install instructions and operational information (and warnings) however, engine stoppage from what they state are incorrect installations can occur. Obviously, I need to check the entire fuel system if I can't find an issue with the mixture controller. Carb floats seem always on the list of suspects. This doesn't seem like an ignition issue, however. Or does it?

I'm looking for suggestions. I do not want to fly the plane until this is resolved.


Thank You Again

Occasionally somebody will include a note with a donation, and sometimes it will reference Ace and the Tater (nicknames for our kids). I want them to share in the kindness, so I took a picture and forwarded.

The VAF family brings our family great joy and happiness, and I thank you again for that. We are Blessed.



February 5, 2020.  Issue #5,013. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Status Report ...Vernh59


3-Blade Sensenich Prop - Now available for RV-12is/RV-12 ...mothership

Van's has published updated RV-12/12iS powerplant kit order forms, a new plans section (47AiS/U) and a service letter (SL 19-12-31), all of which are related to the now-available optional 3-blade Sensenich propeller kit.

We displayed this prop on a stand in our booth at Oshkosh last year and flew it to the show on one of our factory aircraft. It garnered quite a bit of interest. Now that the engineering has been completed and testing of the final install package is all wrapped up, the three-blade prop and spinner kit is available to order as an option on new powerplant kit orders (you'll get to choose either a two-blade or three-blade prop when you order). You can also place a stand-alone order for the prop without the rest of the Powerplant kit (just use the powerplant kit order form and select only the 3-blade prop option in that case).

Note that when building your airplane, in order to register ELSA the parts - including the propeller - must be bought directly from Van's and tracked in our records under that aircraft serial number. Once an aircraft has been licensed and registered ELSA you may, of course, make any changes as you wish.

People will, of course, want to know what's different between the two-blade and three-blade prop. Our testing experience showed that:
Cruise performance was the same (at lower altitudes)
Climb performance was greater
Propeller braking action was slightly greater, which allowed a slightly steeper descent angle in the pattern
The sound/pitch is different, although the measured noise level is about the same (they are the same diameter).

And, of course, there's the aesthetics: The blades are wider on the two-blade prop. Some folks prefer the look of three blades, while others prefer two. Some people like a thinner blade, while others prefer the "beefier" look.  more


Big ole dent in prop leading edge ...JackinMichigan RV-10

...I noticed this little surprise during my condition inspection. It must have just happened because I didn't notice it during my last preflight, and I make it a point to check the prop leading edges.

This is an MT constant speed 3-blade composite prop with all of 53 hours on it. The edges don't feel sharp and it didn't break thru the protective aluminum leading edge, so what should I do about this? Do I do anything?


Ground Question ...AndyRV7

I've mounted my ads-b equipment under my panel and run my power and ground wires toward the avionics bus. I've also added a wire from the harness to my GRT efis for "IN." I've also installed the GPS antenna. I'm very happy with the result so far but locating an appropriate ground is keeping me from powering the system.

I pulled the cowl and mapped out my electrical system as needed. I have no grounds returning to the firewall in groups or individually. My battery is grounded to the air frame at the upper, passenger side engine mount bolt. It does not project in any way by jumper or otherwise, to anywhere on the cockpit side of the firewall. So my individual ground wires seemingly have to be terminated at some location on the air frame (in groups or individually).

I am going to attempt to cut open some of the wire bundles this weekend so I can attempt to trace a ground from a single avionics device, from the unit to its termination point. This has been very difficult so far but I hope that opening some of the bundles of wire might help in that regard.

I have 2 different types of "junctions" for groups of wires. One is a metal unit that wires screw into at individual screws. If I check continuity from any single screw, wire, or the junction unit itself, to the firewall, they indicate ground. I presume I am not learning anything from this other than that that block of wires is grounded "locally" thought the metal block. The other type is a plastic looking unit with pairs of screws in two rows. Some of these screws indicate ground while others do not. So I am assuming these pairs of screws are merely isolated links in some part of a given circuit. Some ground and some power. These can probably be viewed in my original pics. Some have already commented on them.

My question is is this a normal and acceptable way to wire a plane's electrical system? And if so, what is the logic? If everything is grounded locally to the air frame, I would presume you would have a ton of noise in the system.

When I began trying to figure this ADS-B install out, I figured I would just have to trace one installed ground wire to locate a good ground for ADS-B. But it has proven to be much more difficult than I thought it would be.

Lastly , it seems as though I am not going to discover a mythical central ground. If that's the case, Should I just ground the ADS-B next to the unit, or possibly all the way back to the firewall near the battery??

Sorry for the long and confused post. Thanks again. Andy


201kt GS ...Justin RV-10

Went up the other day and noticed a strong went so decided to make it a tail wind!



February 4, 2020.  Issue #5,012. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Formation aeros

Eddie Seve, Mal Kains, Glenn Bridgeland and I brought Jeremy Miller and Michael Jorgensen to train us in formation aerobatics this weekend.

The most intense training experience I've ever had. 115*F in the shade on Saturday, shooting 30 minute sorties all day. Very early starts to "beat the heat." I lost count of the number of water bottles and Hydralite tablets I went through on Saturday. We worked hard for this rating.  ...


Roll Bar Bolts

I'm suprised you couldn't hear my cursing all the way from Estes Park.
The Aft bolt (1/4") on each side of the 7 roll bar has a washer and nut installed under the longeron. It has a special aluminum shim then washer then nut. It was easy with the fuse upside down but right side up, gravity is not helping. Somehow this has to be done in a space barely big enough to get my catcher's mit fingers in the space. The aluminum shim stays put pretty well without persuasion, but the washer wants to fall off before the nut can be slipped into place.*
I needed a trick. Neodymium magnet to the rescue. This time two of the uncoated magnets. Place the magnet on the bolt head. Slip a washer on the bolt and it stays put. Slip the nut in the space. Say a prayer to the Nut Gods. Stick your toungue out so words don't offend same Gods, then gently rotate the bolt with an open end wrench (magnets are stuck on the bolt) till it grabs a couple threads.
Yes, I've heard of builders glueing the assembly then turning the bolt into the part, but one mistake there and a cross thread nightmare ruins the day. After years of wrenching in cars, I learned to always use human fingers to feel the threads engage properly.
Larry Larson


2019 Ground Tracks ...Dee Cee 57

Finally found the time to compile the 2019 data courtesy of the bad weather around here. Who's next?


 Trek to Eloy, Arizona ...Capt Sandy

Hello VAF'ers, There is a long time lag between our treks to getting the video posted due in part to poor WiFi and too much fun-having doing other things. Roy and I have been having FUN here in the Arizona sunshine, including taking advantage of clear, calm air, and exploring the neighborhood. We recently went to Eloy (E60) where there is a HUGE sky-diving center, complete with restaurant, swimming pool, massage studio, and gear shop. Food was good - not great. The real fun was watching people jump out of perfectly good airplanes.
I hope the video shows the highlights.
(Disclaimer - I'm new to the Go-Pro thing, and its a bit of a learning curve.)


Upholstery input sought ...Bill Boyd

I'm deciding on interior for the -10 build now. Some time back I snagged a "deal" on rear seat back frames originally made by Cleaveland but no longer in production. I was hoping to have these covered and have rear 60-40 sets matching the profile of the fronts. After research I've learned that none of the major vendors besides DJ at Cleaveland will do this for a price within market.

I have enjoyed talking with DJ and feel she would be easy to work with. I'm just not sure I like the way her 10 seats look in photos. Something about the horizontal seams in the center part of the seat backs doesn't look right to me somehow. I think since I'm not willing to experiment with finding a local shop to do the rears and try to match/complement aircraft vendor-done front seats, I'd be better off selling these rear seat frames unless I have Cleaveland do all four seats. DJ has offered to bid just doing the rear seats. AeroSport has declined to do only the front seats - no reason offered. South Florida Sport Aviation never answers the phone and has not returned by voicemail message from a week ago.

This has proven to be the most challenging part of the build to out-source professionally, and I really don't want to be stuck with buyer's remorse on this. I'd appreciate private message honest feedback about RV-10 seat experience from those who've 'been there.' I'm not interested in calling anyone out or starting a vendor-bashing thread. I'm sure they're all great folks who bring unique things to the table. I just want some good honest feedback before I jump in. PM me if you have some advice. Answer publicly if you wish, just be constructive.

Thanks, VAF hive


azflyer21's Panel Pic ...14A


 Annuals, broken parts, and assistance request ...airguy

I'm currently in the process of conducting my annual inspection and installing the SDS EM5 engine management hardware, and associated with that I needed to pull the flywheel to drill and tap it for trigger magnets. To pull the flywheel I need to loosen the alternator belt first, and as soon as I took a look at the alternator, before I even loosened the first bolt I knew something wasn't right. The belt angle was wrong and the alternator was obviously not hanging correctly, and as soon as I started to loosen the first bolt the problem was obvious.  ...


Rudder malfunction??? ...mturnerb

So today the "genius" operator of my aircraft learned something new. I did my usual pre-flight and started up the airplane. On the taxiway by my hangar (stopped and holding brakes) I did part of the checklist that I don't like to do in the run-up area as the airport is crazy busy on a beautiful VFR day like today. One of those items is an autopilot test (G3X touch) to check that I can overcome the servos and that my red button (autopilot disconnect) works as it's supposed to. So far, so good. My next action is always to turn off the flight director as the G3X autopilot leaves it on and I find it annoying while taxiing. Today I forgot to hit that button until a bit farther down the taxiway.

As I approached the point on the taxiway where I usually contact ground control (they have no visual contact with hangar area taxiways), I noticed that my rudder pedals felt "stuck": gentle force against the pedals gave me the sensation that the cables were caught/trapped. Strange, since I checked them on preflight and they seemed fine, and felt good when I got in the airplane to start up.

So I called up ground control and taxied back to my hangar using brakes. As I turned on the taxiway to my hangar I turned off the avionics and autopilot switches. Suddenly, rudder pedals are "free and correct". It's about this point that I realize I hit the yaw damper button instead of the flight director button (or both, not sure). Yaw damper servo engaged on the ground pretty much feels like a stuck rudder cable, I learned today!

It was a perfect day for the flight that then ensued after shutting down, checking everything on the ground fully, and making my way back to the starting point....
Turner Billingsley



February 3, 2020.  Issue #5,011.
  Saturday the Wx was as good as you could ever get in North Texas.  00000kt and CAVU for hours and hours.  Not a cloud in the state.  As you might suspect, the airspace was clobbered with people going through their flying toybox.  Danny and Ned launched for a lunch up around KGLE and I caught their takeoff in slo mo.  Link below.  Saturday (23+) Starlink satellites came over the house after sunset in trail around magnitude 3 - right at the edge of what I can see from our near-the-city location.  If you're in N.TX HERE are the orbital elements through the 11th.  Dig around at the link to adjust for your location.  Pretty neat to see so many satellites in a line.
  Hope your RV weekend went swell.
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Watch Video "SloMo#6"

Exhaust hanger critique

Wanted to see if the more experienced than me on here thinks I did this somewhat right. It's a Vetterman trombone exhaust. Upper support connected to oil sump bolt. I tried for at least 1/2 inch of clearance around anything. I'm not sure how much this will move on start up so is 1/2" enough? There are some temporary bolts holding things together so don't critique me on using the wrong hardware . Thanks!!  more pics


Van's Engineering and other positions just posted ...mothership


"We've just posted three new engineering jobs at Van's. Many may realize that these positions don't come open often, but we are growing our team - so if you know someone that should be aware, let them know!

We are also currently recruiting for a couple of experienced welders, plus technical drafting and aircraft assembler jobs.

We have a great team here, and we're looking to add some more great folks!"


Titan specific engine for VANS Aircraft

The VANS community has many options other than the traditional engines that are offered by VANS. Continental Motors manufactures the Titan engines that have many beneficial features that increase durability and reduce weight. Continental has configured some of the Titan engines with that, dimensionally, are the same as the VANS standards. Information on those is found HERE.

The Titan engine can also be built with a variety of upgrades of both performance and modernization. The basic engines at the link are available at very competitive prices. We don't get a lot of traffic on that site so this post is to increase awareness.
James Ball (J.B.)
Continental Aerospace Technologies


Maintaining Sanity ...ShortSnorter

How to maintain sanitry when you realize you've already had dinner, watched a movie, and realize you still have 10 hours of the same left....


Leaking primer solenoid ...Joe

On a refurbishment project I installed a new fuel primer valve, a Parker 12V solenoid valve from Aircraft Spruce (part number 05-04368). From the get-go, in the "OFF" position (no voltage to the solenoid) it leaked badly causing the engine to run excessively rich.

I removed it and can verify it leaks sometimes and it seals at other times. Aircraft Spruce is willing to give me an RMA but it will take 4-6 weeks to hear back from Parker and issue a credit if they deem it defective. I'm inclined to just order another and get on with it but first ...

My question for experienced users of this particular valve is this: could it be an installation issue (e.g. is one port an input and the other an output). An additional question: how does one non-destructively open this particular valve to examine the viton plunger and its sealing surfaces? I don't want to apply any heat to break the locktite for fear of melting something inside.


RV-7 Video ...SuperCubDriver

Couldn't sleep tonight and the weather is miserable so I put some RV-7 footage together:


A Journey of Self Discovery  ...frankbrown

Building a plane is a Journey of self discovery.
What I've learned so far:

*I can't rivet.

*Vans is really great with sending new parts!

*Changing one thing can really lead to a lot of work.

*I need to loose 50 lbs to crawl around the fuse like a teenager.

Decided to go with fuel injection.
Led to new fuel pump, learning soft tubing skills, cutting and building for new housing for new fuel pump, changing to electric trim since I would need a larger trim cable any way.
New lower cowl for the FI engine is also in my future.
I would say '1 step forward, 2 steps back....but I have not gone forward'

I have been soldering my Fly LED's for the wing tip lights and that has been really cool. That is a really great kit if anyone is thinking of them.

What will I learn next week?


Eyes Inspected

Been five years since the last visit to the eye doctor.  I have an interview this week for some possible part time work in a sim to help the fam out (fingers crossed), so I thought it might be a good idea to get the eyes looked over beforehand.  Checkup Friday.  New glasses ordered, fresh prescription and the OptiGrab 1000 checked to look for problems in there - all good (pic below).  Boy, glasses and visit and the works are expensive.  Nice to know at least the vessels and retina are good. 

She didn't find any evidence of a brain.  I asked.



RV-4 runs rich at cruise. ...71459

Hi, was wondering if anyone here could help with an issue re a rich-running RV-4.

Airplane starts right off, idles fine, run-up is perfect. T/O proceeds alright, maybe power isn't 100% there, but good.

After about 1/2 hour, engine starts to run rough. Gets rougher over time. Able to smooth it out by leaning, but shouldn't have to at 2000'. Airplane has run perfectly smooth for years, but now something is not right. Head back to the field pronto. Back on the ground, plugs are completely blackened with soot - definitely showing over-rich mixture.

Recently changed out to new plugs, new harness, new mechanical fuel pump, and overhauled carb. I did open the carb and change the float to the blue epoxy model. Float level checked 10 times - seems to be perfect (on the ground).

Did I screw up the float installation? Is the overhauled carb the wrong model for an RV-4? But it's the same model I've used for years without any trouble (10-5009).

Out of ideas, getting nervous to fly it.

Thanks for any insight..



January 31, 2020.  Issue #5,010.
  Well it finally happened.  I got an AARP membership application in the mail Thursday.  I'm gonna go watch Golden Girls and then it's off to bed at 7pm.  My childhood is officially over.  ;^)
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Wallpaper Calendar for February

...Ed Hicks photo.


Ridge in Grove Rim ...Janekom

Posting on behalf of a friend. He is in the process of installing Grove wheels on his RV10. The question is if the ridge that can be seen in the rim, will damage the tube by any chance? That is the ridge running through the stem hole. Thanking you in advance.


Oil Change Time Lapse Video ...PixelWorker

I recently had some new camera gear to test and naturally made my RV the subject. So not wanting to let the footage go to waste I threw together a time-lapse edit of the RV getting the oil changed:


New Guy Chimes In ...RV-14A Build in KY.


Build Status Report ...vernh59

Many pics...


1998 RV-6 'Choud Chasers' ...mbauer

Here are photos of "Cloud Chasers" after adding a graphic design.


Tail Art ...ShookieRV7A

This is to go with my Arizona Flag theme....



January 30, 2020.  Issue #5,009. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

My RV Weekend ...crabandy

Loaded up the RV with lots of Lake Cabin supplies and headed south for sunshine and warmer temps. My first weekend (Mon/Tues) in months without OT, Lil' dude called in sick from pre-school to join me.....  more

[ed. I missed this yesterday - apologies.  Obviously top shelf story!  v/r,dr]


12th annual ice cream social at Inyokern, CA on March 7th ...AX-O

The 12th annual ice cream social will be held at Inyokern, CA airport on March 7th from 1100-1400.

The ice cream social is just an excuse to get together, eat some free ice cream and fly.

If you would like to attend, please email me at axel"underscore"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 1st. Please DON'T wait until the last minute. This happens every year and we have to flex last minute.

-The airport's web site is http://inyokernairport.com/

-Our preferred calm winds runway is 33.

-Runway 20 is the only runway with non-standard traffic (right pattern).
-Click 3 times on 122.8 for AWOS info.


Tube Update ...Dean Pichon

I just fixed my flat by replacing both tubes, both tires, (and brake pads for good measure). I inflated both old tubes (the one that flatted and the one on the other side) to 8-10 psi. Neither showed a leak by submerging. After 7 days, I could not discern a pressure difference between the two. It's still a mystery to me.

To what level can a tube without a tire be pressurized without rupturing the tube?


Slick Inspection - Do I Need a New Distributor Block Assembly? ...avrojockey

I'm upgrading one mag to a P-mag and need to swap the tach pickup to the left mag. Since the plug was hard to get too I decided to remove the mag and do a 500-hr inspection IAW L-1367F.

All looked good but there is obvious contact happening between the electrode towers and the electrode finger on the distributor gear. The electrode finger on the distributor gear is not loose and there's no signs of cracking in the gear. Also, there's no cracking in the distributor block. There is, however, some slight play in the gear when assembled in the distributor block, which leads me to believe the olite bearings are worn.

Does anyone know if contact between the gear electrode and the distributor towers is cause for replacement? The overhaul manual is vague...
"Inspect the brass electrode posts for signs of physical wear. Replace block assembly as necessary."

Manual says bearing should be 0.246 +.002/-.001 so I'm checking that next.


My RV Weekend  ...Roy Thoma

Lunch flight to KMZJ
We (FINALLY) finished installing a new prop cable on N174RT about noon on Sunday. Sandy and I were both ready for lunch so we flew to Marana (KMZJ) for a nice meal. Fuel stop at Ak-Chin (A39) on the way back to P01. Brought home the last three slices of apple pie they had.*YUM!


7A Rebirthing Update  ...kentlik

Finalized and installed fuel manifold and lines.  ...



January 29, 2020.  Issue #5,008.
  There was a bird in the hangar when I arrived Tuesday morning.  It was in the low 50's outside so I wanted to leave the door down for another hour or so until just before lunch.  I'll let it out then.  Turned on the space heater, pulled the laptop out of my backpack, logged into work and started to go through the morning list. 
  Three minutes later a blob of bird shit landed on my shirt.  From 22' up.
  On second thought I think I'll open the door now.  James later said it's considered good luck in some cultures, so I got that going for me....which is nice.
  About-to-order-RV10-kit David L. got after the panel with the grinder and drill (pic) while I wiped up bird feces.  He wanted the practice and I didn't.  Win win! <g>
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Imperial Valley ...Chino Tom

It's nice to be able to use the RV in some work related activities. The Imperial Valley in California's south east is one of the most fertile ag areas in the US. Also, home to many future rib-eyes. Feeding those is part of what we do....


Glamour Shot...Colin P. RV-6A


Q: Pushing and pulling via the prop.

Hello all,

Just getting an idea on if it's bad or not to gently push/pull the airplane by the root of the prop close to the spinner to move it around. Airplane in question is an RV-6A with O-320 H2AD fixed catto prop.

Thank you!

I push and pull my RV-6A by the prop and was told to do so by my mechanic. Think about it, the prop is pulling the plane through the air so there is much more load on it when flying than you could put on it on the ground. Now I do like you said and push/pull near the hub not way out at the tip, even though I doubt even that would cause any issues.

Approximate percent of people who use prop to pull their Hartzell (and others) equipped RV's is 100%

There is a thrust bearing in the engine but on the ground it has no oil pressure.
If you can push or pull without turning the prop it's probably ok but if it turns as you are pulling it could damage the bearing. So why not just push on the cowl and pull with a tow bar?


RV-12 Service Bulletins 19-08-26 (New) and 16-05-23 (Updated) Published: Nose gear leg and fork replacement


Homemade gust locks...

...like these are what we used on Navy flying club aircraft for years. Cheap, easy to make and spreads stress loads from sudden big gusts over larger areas:


Garmin GTN 6XX/7XX Software 6.70 Now Available for Download (1/24/2020)

The GTN V6.70 EAB Service Bulletin and software were loaded to the EAB Software Download Area today.

There are two different links on the download page for Service Bulletin 2010. The first link is the Service Bulletin documentation. The second link includes the software file. Please see the Service Bulletin documentation for complete details and make sure you are familiar and comfortable with the software update process outlined there before attempting it on your own aircraft. If not, the option of seeking assistance from a dealer is still available.

We mentioned when V8.40 was released that you can now view and tune the NAV radio on the GDU (as shown below), much the same as you could with a COM radio, but that the feature was only available for the SL 30 NAV radio. With a successful update to GTN Software 6.70, NAV tuning will now available for the GTN 650 and GTN 750.  ...


How Mickey Coggins ...

...wired the ignition on/off switches for pmags to allow to check to see if the internal alternator is working



January 28, 2020.  Issue #5,007. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

RV-6 Rebuild PIREP ...James

With the kind assistance of fellow RV owner (and builder, and ex C5 crew chief) Curt Pullen, I moved the battery to the engine bay. We built a rather beautiful box for it, and attached it to the right side of the engine mount with Adel clamps.

Photos to follow when I remember to take some.

In the meantime, here's a shot of my 4 looking lonely


What did you do with your RV this weekend? (1/24-26/2020) ...SPX starts the thread

How did your building/flying go this weekend?

Friday was a clear day at CRQ, so I gave the boss of my wife a ride in the RV for her 74th birthday. We went southbound along the coast, over Coronado, San Diego Bay, and then reversed course back to CRQ. She mentioned it being nothing like she had imagined, claims it's even better than a massage, and can't wait to go again. She wasn't the greatest passenger, as she would grab onto the stick, and press the rudder pedals occasionally, but she has a blast, so I am not complaining!!

Today was about 1500' OVC, so the options were more limited. My wife and I decided to head south along the coast, over Torrey Pines to see the golfers playing and the crowd watching, then came into Montgomery Field (MYF) for some Mexican food for lunch. After lunch, we headed back north along the coast, and stopped in Oceanside (OKB) for fuel, and for some aerial sightseeing. Shortly thereafter we headed back to the hangar in Carlsbad (CRQ)...

Great weekend, one new RV grin, and two old ones

Headed down to Bermuda Dunes for the local EAA fly-in on Saturday. A very nice turn out of Experimental, Light sport, and Spam cans. My friend Richard showed up in his very nice Skywagon, along with Ted and Cindy Gablin in their RV-7A and this beauty:

I had set the hook on a new-to-the-RV-world recruit last month with a ride down to Houston for lunch with the D.W. Hooks crowd, and this weekend I gave him another ride down to Houston (La Porte this time) to inspect, buy, pack up, and ship home a partially built 9A kit purchased from Mike Miller.

Please welcome Mike Crowley to the fold, mcrowley screen-name on here, as he ventures into the RV-snobbery we all enjoy.

After that, I proceeded to do major surgery on my engine, installing the SDS system.

Another Allentown PA trip
IFR on the way up from New Kent International Aerodrome (W96) -- freezing level was high enough to mess around in clouds if needed, although as it turned out we were VMC the whole way, albeit with a touch of rain that left a bit of water in my baggage area like it always does.....

VFR on the way back Sunday -- freezing level wasn't nearly high enough to chance any IMC. But the ceilings were high and stable.

Sometimes the most scenic trips around the Chesapeake Bay area are under a broken or scattered cloud layer:


Foam Continued ...David Paule -3B

I'd noticed that the foam block was sliding side to side as I carved on it. Not surprisingly, since the bottom was flat and resting on the fuselage longerons. Its shape prevented fore/aft motion and rotation but nothing kept it from shifting laterally.

Two small foam blocks took care of that. This photo shows the bottom with the foam blocks in place. We're looking at the bottom and the back of it. I'd brought it into the house for the glue to set up, the house being warmer than the shop.


Blocked Pitot ...me too.

I did the same dumb thing recently. I have Dynon HDX and a backup Dynon D6. I realized just as I was lifting off and decided to continue once around the pattern. I got GPS assist indications on the HDX and the D6. The only other thing of note was the Dynon giving me a warning to turn on pitot heat (I guess it assumes it is iced over). .... Classic distraction during preflight inspection kind-of-thing. A non-event, but I don't plan to repeat the "experiment".
-Joe Wilbur (N520LW)
Phase II - 11/2017


Wear on spar rib angle rivets

I'm currently doing the annual inspection on my 10 year old 320hrs TT RV12 and discovered wear on the LP4-3 rivets that connect the inboard rear rib to the left main spar. .../more pics


After an Unairworthy Condition Inspection ...Pilot135pd

Was hangar flying with a friend the other day and the topic of the Annual Inspections and Condition Inspections came up.

On a Standard Airworthiness airplane the Inspection is done and there are 2 options that usually happen:

1- the discrepancies (or squawks) get fixed and the Annual Inspection is signed as Airworthy and returned to service.

2- the discrepancies get written up (squawk list) and the logbook is signed as Unairworthy with discrepancies given to owner. Then at least an A&P will correct the discrepancies and sign the logbooks with their certificate as done. That brings the plane back to Airworthy.

Then we started talking about Experimental airplanes:

All maintenance on my Experimental plane can be done by me. I'm not an A&P and don't have a Repairman certificate of any kind.

In Experimental airplanes the Condition Inspection must be done by at least an A&P.

Here's were we got stuck. Say an A&P does my Condition Inspection and finds some deficiencies. Can he sign the logbook as Unairworthy and give me a squawk list like a Standard airplane or does he have to repair anything and sign it as Airworthy?

If he can sign it as Unairworthy and give me a squawk list, can I fix the squawks and return it to service or does it have to be another A&P?

Please include FARs with your replies so I can research it further and learn from you. Thanks !

(*** In MY specific case it would most likely get fixed by another A&P because depending on what it is I probably don't have the expertise, but I'm asking in general terms. ***)


RV-4 Five Point Harness Pic Request ...Stewbronco

Forgive the nastiness that is the Tunnel, it is in the middle of being cleaned.



January 27, 2020.  Issue #5,006. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)



Foam Fun ...David Paule -3B Update

The fiberglass canopy fairing needs to fit the skin, and there were clecos poking out of it, holding the front top on. Time to screw it down. On the RV-3B, this skin is attached with a lot of #8 screws. The side screw holes got dimpled for #8 screw heads as you'd expect. The instrument panel flange wasn't wide enough for #8 dimples so I decided to use NAS8702U1 8-32 screws instead. These screws are really good: the material is 160 ksi A286, strong enough to survive a number of installations and removals, corrosion resistant and very tough - cracks don't propagate easily in that material. It's the material that many spacecraft screws are made of.

This particular part number has a #8 body and a #6 head. I had to get a special dimple die for that, and Cleaveland came through.

In this photo, the instrument panel screw, on the right, is in a #6 dimple as it should be. But the screws on the bottom (the side of the fuselage) are #8 dimples and these screws just don't fit. I included one of the standard #8 screws for comparison. Since this is merely to temporarily replace some clecos, the use of the wrong screws here is okay.  ...


Blocked Pitot ...Jpm757

Took off today with my Pitot cover installed. I am running dual Dynon ADAHARS and dual AFS 5600t's. Other than no airspeed or AOA, everything else functioned normally. I had always been curious how a blocked Pitot would effect the system as a whole. Stopped at a local airport and replaced my now ragged cover with a new one with a big red banner. Lesson learned!


Quick Fuse Update ...Pilotjohns

So I have been working on the tail fairing now that the tail mechanical attach is done. I figured I would get it done before the tail comes off. The stock fairing fits really nice; much better than older posters have led me to believe. I used the cut lines, but these were too severe in the rear, so next time, I would leave a little extra there and trim, fit, trim, fit, etc. Nothing major for mounting, just takes time to find the underlying holes in the fuse. I measure the location of the holes in the fuse without the fairing; added the fairing, marked the hole locations on the fairing, then drilled a #50, then a 3/32 hole in the fairing, cleco'd and moved on to the next. Next I will enlarge the holes to #40, countersink the fiberglass for the #6 flathead screws, then enlarge the holes to #6, remove the fairing, and install the riv nuts.


N420PW Preliminary Report

...when the final report comes out I'll let you know.  Prayers to all involved.  dr


Weekend Panel Love

Susie and I spent most of Saturday at the hangar fiddling with stuff.  I made a little more progress on widening the holes for the upgraded G3X touch screens.  I work slow. ;^)   Lots of people on the field aviating and a nice lunch. 

Smokey Ray stopped by, the usual suspects were doing RV stuff and it went too quick.  Saturday was nice.





Fuel Tank Leak ...jahoosafat

Hi - My 2013 RV-10 is about to be re-painted,*and I found multiple fuel leaks on both the right and left tanks just as I dropped it off at the paint shop in Alabama. I previously had a few leaks, and my A&P applied epoxy to the tank exterior in order to avoid the higher cost of removing and re-sealing the tanks.* This approach worked ... until now.* My question is what's the best course: 1) Remove the tanks and send them to Paul Beck (http://www.weepnomorellc.com/), reinstalling them before final paint work. 2) Remove the tanks and buy new tanks from Vans, getting an A&P connected with the paint shop to build and install them.* 3) Something else?* Since I'm an owner rather than a builder, could anyone provide info about potential timeframes for Weepnomore to turn these around (I've emailed Paul and am waiting to hear back) or a decent A&P to build/install new tanks?* Thanks for any info!


DanH Annual PIREP

Annual time, so as promised, I stuck a borescope down the fuel servo and intake throat to look in the sump plenum. Ran it for a hot leakdown, then took the photo 30~60 minutes after shutdown.

For those new to Lycomings, the horizontal intake sump has an upper chamber full of oil, and a lower chamber for intake air. Unlike the vertical draft sumps, the air passages do not pass through the hot oil. Instead, the intake tubes enter the air plenum from the sides.

Part #10 is the sniffle valve.  ...


Left Tank Leak - Looking like a new tank ...Saville

Well this was the year for the prop inspection and as that was going to take several weeks I decided to so the annual 4 months early - lousy flying weather in January and February anyway.

But the other reason I downed the plane was that I had developed a small leak in the left hand tank. You'd wipe the underside of the wing clean and the next day there would be a track a few inches long. Nothing major but enough to bother me.

So the prop came off and and the annual completed (few minor adjustments to be made), and the tank came off.

The leak is in the lower seam about 3/4's the way outboard:  ...



January 24, 2020.  Issue #5,005.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.
(Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

From the photo vault:
4 RVs left downwind Big Creek, ID.


RE: Formation Clinics and Cards? ...Check6

I have had a couple of conversations around Falcon Flight's Formation Clinic coming up in April. I wanted to write a universal response:

Stu "Falcon" McCurdy started Falcon Flight in 1993 as a way to demonstrate the precision and safety of flying in formation. Falcon Flight was the first FFI team. He would soon thereafter start FFI (Formation Flying Inc.) to set a "standard" and get more pilots flying formation safely. I believe the history and legacy of Falcon Flight continues because of his dream to teach, demonstrate, and provide a resource for those motivated to fly formation.

The questions have ranged from "What if I don't want to be a "Carded pilot"?" to "If I don't have a "Card" I can't be in the "club". The goal of FFI is Not for everyone to get a card and we are not a club. I think I can speak for most FFI formation clinics with the exception of the advanced clinics which are designed to get pilots carded for Airshows/routines. So you do NOT have to be a carded pilot to fly formation! The goal of FFI is spread the precision and standard of flying formation to those interested in learning a new skill, training to the same standard and holding those they fly with to the standard. This allows the pilot to show up with others that have been trained to the standard to get together and go formation flying safely - That truly was "Falcon's" goal! There are lots of reasons to fly formation, which I will not go into here - that is for a clinic.

There are those who want to get a card as it demonstrates a lot of energy, effort and training to get "carded" as it is not an easy process in that it takes time and lots of practice. But here again the only reason you MUST have a card is to perform in TFR's and/or Airshows. So if you have 4 RV buddies in this case that have been trained to the FFI standard and you wanted to go do a local missing man for a veteran etc. none of you would need a "Card".

Hopefully, this answers some of the questions/perceptions around RV Formation Clinics and will serve to encourage more aviators to learn this skill. Please feel free to take a look at the upcoming Falcon Flight Clinic in the above posts or any others that are held around the country. I think you will have lots of fun, be challenged and learn/polish up a great skill.


Build Update ...vernh59


A Little Progress

The swap out of first gen G3X screens with touch models and other panel love continues in Flash.  You drill out the old rivets and clamp on a steel jig that shows you where to drill the new holes (and how much of the corners you need to nibble out).  Where's the punch?  I need a 30 and 40 drill bit.  I need a sheet so I don't get aluminum filings all over the place.  Dang my knees hurt.  And it's lunch time...

At least I got something done. ;^)


RV-8 Status Report ...Foghorn

Still working on the FB canopy frame. Applying dry micro for sanding. Should I do the micro all the way up the insides or just smooth it out and skim the sides with epoxy?


RV-6 Rebuild in Palm Springs PIREP ...jamlip


Recent Mothership First Flight Announcements



January 23, 2020.  Issue #5,004.
  The plan was to work on the panel for a couple hours during the rain showers Wednesday, but the 25+year old garage door opener on my side give up the ghost Tuesday.  So, Wednesday was spent installing a factory referb belt driven replacement.  Boy have garage door openers improved over the last two decades.  No oiling, silent belt drive, wireless controls, web app and plug in cameras and parking lasers (not kidding).  It's possible this thing gets the History Channel.
  The old unit was rebuilt at least three times with new gears.  If you look close you can see aircraft safety wire below holding a contact in place for the up/down micro-switch contacts.
  It was a good run...
(Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)


AOA confession ...sailvi767

As a Navy trained pilot I have had AOA available in most aircraft I have flown. My first RV was a RV6 with AOA. I liked it but never had a occasion where I felt it provided any type of save or a warning that the aircraft was not in the state I wanted it at. Still I liked having the extra level of protection.

I purchased a F1 Rocket that did not have AOA or any stall warning. That bothered me a bit but I quickly found the aircraft to be very honest and easy to fly in the patten at the proper speeds. I had planned a panel upgrade shortly after purchasing it that would include AOA. In Nov when the aircraft was getting a new panel I considered dropping the AOA option to avoid a pitot change and cost. In the end I kept the AOA. (Dynon HDX system with Dynon pitot)

On Tuesday I was out flying after a frontal passage. On return to my home field which involves a slightly overshooting approach as the norm to avoid tall trees I needed to also compensate for a strong overshooting crosswind in the pattern. (30 Kts at 1000 ft). On base to final I found myself with more overshoot than planned and wrapping the turn up. Normally I would have been at 75 knots at this point but was actually targeting 80 knots with the bumpy conditions. Just after crossing the gap in the trees still turning to align with the runway at about 250 AGL I got a beep from the Dynon AOA. Unloaded, leveled the wings and went around. Glancing at the airspeed I was at 67 knots. In one G flight I get the first AOA beep at 56 Kts. I was slow, wrapped up and visually 100% outside watching the trees. I should have abandoned the approach prior to that point and gone around. I now embarrassingly have my first AOA save in 7 years of flying RV's.

I don't know how much margin was left but I am now very glad I went with the AOA option. I fell into a trap many pilots get into and needed the AOA tone to jolt me back into reality. Spend the money and put a AOA system into your aircraft!



2020 first flight, a Van's RV-8 celebration ...lucaperazzolli

We traditionally fly the first day of the year, in the early hours when people try to mitigate the effect of heavy drinking the night before (we don't ). [in the sense that we don't drink LOL]

This year we offered the first flight to our homebuilder 8 friends.  More / video


Can this be fixed (belly sheet metal bend)? ...Cannon

I finally got my second-hand RV-8 on a rotisserie, and when we spun it upside down, I could see that the belly skin that becomes the lower wing root fairing was creased.

It looks like the previous builder set the fuselage on some padding and bent the belly skin where it extends past the fuselage sides.

Would something like a wood block and some light taps with a flush rivet set work? It's on the belly, so I'm not really concerned, but if there's an easy fix I'm all ears.


My $17 mistake ...bruce

I am building an RV-14A. Over the weekend I made a mistake that will cost me $17. I have to buy a six foot length of piano hinge (again). I am pretty sure it is an error in the plans rather than my own screw-up.

I was wondering if there is a place on VAF for people to log suspected plans errors. If not, do you think it would be a good idea?

Does Van's track possible errors in the plans?

More info on my mistake:

The plans call for the piano hinge for the upper cowling to have a reference line drawn the length of the hinge 3/16" behind the hinge eyelets to be used to ensure the hinge is straight on the firewall. I drew the line where it was supposed to be. I followed the instructions that said the line had to be parallel to front of the top skin. I placed the hinge such that the reference line was exactly on the front edge of the top skin even though the index hold didn't line up. I then match drilled each of the holes into the piano hinge (based on holes that were already in the top skin). When I took it apart I found that the holes were way too close to the edge of the piano hinge (only about one rivet diameter away). The only way for the holes to be in the center of the "meat" of the hinge would be for the reference line to be up under the top skin where I wouldn't be able to see it. So I suspect the plans have the reference line drawn in the wrong place.


Issues are tracked and investigated ( that is easier to do if you mention a plans page and step #). There is a stickied thread at the top of the RV-14 subforum that has been used to log /report suspected issues.


757 Wake Turbulence caught on vid in 7A ...3min 46sec mark in Sid's new vid



January 22, 2020.  Issue #5,003 (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Creative Tail Trim Tab  ...Carl Froehlich


My RV Weekend ...RV8Squaz

I had a productive weekend.

I departed Thursday morning for a 3-leg day. First was a stop in Marianna, FL (MAI) to visit Air Prop Specialists. I've been using this shop for 12+ years. My Hartzell has an old hub which has an AD that requires an Eddy current inspection every 100 hours or annual whichever comes first. In my case it works out to about every 9 months. It's really not as obtrusive as it sounds. It's about an hour flight, takes me 5 minutes to remove the spinner, 10 minutes for the technician to do the inspection, 5 minutes to install the spinner, and 10 minutes for the paper work. The cost... let's just say I can do a lot of inspections for the price of a new prop! I usually combine it with a BBQ lunch or a visit to the nearby Florida Caverns State Park. Not this time though; I had places to go and people to see.

The 2nd leg took me to 28J, Palatka Muni to see a couple of Extra's that were for sale and being re-assembled. It was great to see them with all of the panels removed so that I could inspect everything. They looked good!

The 3rd leg (my first VFR leg of the day) took me to PMP, Pompano Air Park in S. Florida to visit with my brother and his family for a few days. PMP is home of the Good Year blimp. My brother and I enjoyed some seriously good donuts.

Yesterday I came back in two legs. Had to depart IFR due to the Trump TFR in Palm Beach and the weather at my fuel stop at FIN, Flagler Co Airport just north of Daytona Beach. I don't normally stop for fuel going to or from S. Florida but Flagler's fuel was $3.99. I couldn't resist! I had hoped to see a couple of Extra's at Spruce Creek and St. Augustine, but I wasn't able to coordinate with the sellers. BTW, I never experienced any of the proposed GPS outages across the SE. I finally got past the front just north of Jacksonville and had a beautiful evening flight home for the last hour. The 30-40 knots on the nose gave me more time to enjoy the gorgeous sunset. ...


Q: Removing T-708 plate from gas tank

Got left gas tank off on my RV-6, undid the screws to T-708 plate, applied heat in the form of a heat gun, then tried a 250 watt heat lamp for 15 minutes, using a flat putty knife to try to get under it, and some gentle tugs of various screw drivers, still not really getting anywhere.

Any suggestions? Seem like somebody may have used piano wire?

A: (rvbuilder2002)
1" wide putty knife

Round the corners very slightly so they wont gouge the aluminum.

Sharpen the end slightly using a disk sander.

Tap it under the cover and then around the perimeter using a small hammer.


Some Circuit Help Please ...AndyRV7

I'm trying to figure out how to power my ADSB equipment but I feel completely electronics illiterate. Maybe you guys can help me.

I have installed a Uavionics Echo and a GRT Safefly gps to be in/out compliant. My intention has been to pull power from one of the circuit breakers on my avionics bus. Here are some pictures of my panel and behind the panel. These were the best I could do in tight spaces. ...


Adding holes in F-402B bulkheads ...RV-4

It is very, very tempting to mount switches, etc. in the F-402B bulkheads.

I see that Steve mounted two switches on each side, plus the ELT remote control there:

Any clue as to how many, how big and positions of holes one can safely make in those bulkheads?



My RV Weekend ...bruceh 9A

Busy Holiday weekend. Saturday did my first formation flight as a two ship with a safety pilot in my right seat. I did better than I had feared! Still have lots to learn and it will take a while to get all of the controls working via muscle memory.

Sunday my wife and I took off to Paso Robles for a wine tasting overnight trip for her birthday weekend. Had a great tailwind and we got up there in record time. Got to cross LAX Class Bravo via the Coliseum Route at 8500'. The airport (KPRB) cleared up to VFR as we got close and then we had breakfast at the diner on the field, which was excellent (Joe's one-niner diner). We got our rental car from ACI Jet and then we hit several wineries and did some other shopping/dining. Back to the airport diner the next morning for another great breakfast, then we took off to head home. Cloudy high overcast with a few low clouds below, and some brutal headwinds the whole way, so we stayed lower along the coast and crossed back over LAX via the Coastal Route at 5500'. I can't say enough good things about SoCal TRACON and how helpful they are, even when it is super busy. We probably spotted and dodged 30+ airplanes just on the way back.

Another 5.2 hours in the logbook.



January 21, 2020.  Issue #5,002 (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Motivation  ...jrtens RV-12iS

Beautiful today in Utah - here are the Timpanogos mountains.


O-320 Help! ...8213C

I am having issues with my EGTs on my O-320 . My mechanic looked it over and concluded that I needed to have the carb replaced. So I did, flew, and this was the result. I could never get #3 cylinder to go under 1500 degrees even in cruise at full rich and, 2400rpm. My temps are, #1 1380, #2 1260 #3 1510, #4 1378 full rich. On takeoff on the ground it wouldn't rev past 2200 rpm, where it use to be 2350 with the old carb. She seemed super gutless in climb out and takeoff roll. In the climb out now, I saw 1605 and 1590 on #3 and #4. I'd have to throttle down to 2200-2300 rpm to get #3 into the 1470s in cruise at full rich; she feels real rough overall and more so on the left mag. I tried different power n mix settings for about 20 minutes but no change, just higher EGTs. I had the mags sent off and one was rebuilt right before all this at the time of the new carb install. Twice now I have been told she runs great, and the mechanic has released it like this. On the 1st test flight attempt, it was backfiring bad on run up with one mag dropping 500, so I didn't even fly it. They then cleaned the brand-new plugs which have barley 50hrs on them and richened it some. I don't understand why the plugs would be fouled already since I always lean on the ground and always lean out for cruise but anyway no bad mag check or misfiring with mags dropping 100 on both L & R. Now still the EGT issue. They are higher temps then I had before and a greater spread between hottest and coldest. The other thing is my highest temp cylinder before the carb was #4 at about around 1500. Also, when I kill it now, it has a slow drop and no rise at all.

My compression is mid 70s and had no metal in the oil. The engine has about 800hrs SMOH. At this time, I had the 4-cylinder EGT gauge installed and I realized it was too hot and was told to change the old carb out for a new one would solve that issue. I have flown it 55hrs since the annual and now decided to go for it and replace the carb in effort to help those EGTs. I feel like I should have just left it alone at this point.

My mechanic seems to not be sure what to do right now.
Do I just need someone who knows how to tune this thing or any other advice out there?
Why would #2 be so much colder?
Why is just once cylinder so hot?
Why the lower RPM on the ground after being richened up?


My 'Sonic Window Tray'  ...ArlingtonRV

In the past I had made a diving board by clamping a board to a tool cart and parking it near the airplane. This worked OK, but it was a good bit down the side of the fuselage and was relatively narrow and very easy to knock things off of. Since gravity has yet to be repealed, anything I knock off goes right for the wing. Also, I have to be careful not to hit the flap with the cart. So, while it worked, it was not ideal.

Went from...

To this...


RE: The Annual Price Increase ...Greg Hughes

The price adjustments we make, when necessary, generally take place in the late spring. Last year we were delayed a month or two. We do everything we can to keep the prices affordable, in pursuit of why we're here: to make uncommonly awesome airplanes available and accessible to (relatively) common people.  :^)

Most adjustments are substantially related to changing cost of materials. The more significant increase that David referred to was on the RV-3 and RV-4 a few years ago and was related to cost of manufacturing and support given the lower volume of kit orders. We had to make an adjustment to not be underwater, so to speak.

The RV-10 is currently the second most popular kit. No volume-related issues currently with that one. :^)  We're just working hard to keep pushing them out the door!


Mothers weekend made possible by RV ...Flandy10

Finally got to stretch the legs (wings) a little.

Left Friday right after the wife got out of school. Dropped her at Tampa Executive to spend time with her cousins and their moms (aka Girls Weekend around my house). It was a short hop from there to Sebring where I spent the weekend with my mom.

Monday morning, time to reverse the route.

Great weather both directions.

6.5 hours on the tach and 56 gallons on the truck meter.


Hangar/Base/Home Radio Rigs ...various


Almost finished ...Allan Stern

After 19 calendar months starting June 2018 until January 2020 minus @4 month waiting for quick build kits to come and back ordered Lycoming engines and a month vacation my RV14A, N507PW was given her airworthiness certificate on Friday January 17th by a DAR.

So my quick build kit took me about 14 months to put together. Almost daily work. I now have to put all panels back on and my Clasic Aero interior in and it should be ready to fly.


RV-7 AOG West Memphis - Solution was a new cylinder ...VIN2020

A quick update:

I learned how to do a compression check by pulling the prop through (Thank you Walt). I realized the number four cylinders intake valve was leaking. I could hear the compression stroke air come out through the carburetor (something to add to my check list before l start long journeys).

I ended up buying a brand new Lycoming cylinder (so long to one of my four ECI cylinders with the 50hr AD inspection requirement)

Justin at Ultimate Aircraft Services (M01 - General DeWitt Spain Airport) was awesome. He replaced out my number 4 cylinder and did the initial run.

A few days later when I could make it back to West Memphis, I did the initial 30min break-in flight at full takeoff power (I have never done that before and man does that RV-7 go).

De-cowled and everything looked good, got back in the plane and flew it for 6 hours (Memphis to Midland to Fort Worth).

The plane never stumble again, so it seems fairly clear the whole stumbling issue was because of the leaking intake valve.

Thank you all for your assistance. It was very humbling for all those who reached out to help and cared what was happening (especially for a fiercely independent person as myself).

What a great community of fellow aviators we have.



January 20, 2020.  Issue #5,001 (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

First Flight of N20GL ...leok RV-10

Short take off roll, a little waggle to confirm controls, then up to 3500' to orbit until everything stabilized.
Only surprise was when the panel went blank and rebooted without the #2 radio. I'll have to sort that out- perhaps a loose connector. I had anticipated the possibility of EFIS glitches, so it was a non-event as far as flying. I had my iPad ready at hand but the system rebooted before I even had time to reference it.

Landing was smooth as well.


Latest ...SeanB RV-7


3 Months In ...Earl Findlay RV-14

Tail - DONE
QB Fuselage & Wings - DONE
Finish Kit - Waiting for delivery
Engine - Ordered. Delivery 7/2020
Avionics - Ordered. Delivery 5/2020

We stand a good chance of flying before the year is up. I CANNOT WAIT to fly the RV-14. I have a RV-9 I am flying now, and if the RV-14 is as fun, I am going to be in love!!!


My RV Weekend ...sapeloson

"getting the data plate engraved..."


Update on VideoBobK ...RPorter

As some of you may have seen in a previous thread, the founder of the high school build program, Aviaton Nation, and my mentor Bob Kelly known in these parts at videobobk, has not been in good health the past couple months. I have visited him in the hospital as much as I could, and after my latest visit last Tuesday I figured it was time for an update and some much needed good news! Bob is back to his old self, ornery, witty, and sharp as ever! He remarked about the litany on medical equipment he's been hooked up to, saying he feels like a transponder with all of the beeping going on! He should be returning home sometime this week, and although he still has a long road ahead to get back to building and running the day to day operations of Aviation Nation, he has made leaps and bounds and we are all very encouraged. Although he did not specifically ask me to post this here, he is incredibly thankful for the amazing support system he is surrounded by. God is good!


Small Tools Tray Project ...fl-mike

Saw something similar (but more complicated) posted on the Redstar FB and thought it looked handy, so I designed my own. Might be a common thing, but I never noticed them in use. Literally took 30 minutes to make and I can tell already that I should have made this ten years ago! $6 cafeteria tray off Amazon and about $6 of sch 40 1/2" PVC pipe and fittings. (the pipe insulation I think is repurposed from Vans crate packing)

No more lap, glareshield, seats, and reaching over to pick up stuff off the wing (and risking having it roll off)

Could be modified to compensate for taildragger slope, etc.

I wouldn't put a lot of weight on it, but screwdrivers, wrenches, small tools and fasteners should be fine.

BTW, I went all plastic because metal has a way of finding my paint. I may put some liner material in the tray to prevent sliding of tools. A work in progress.



January 17, 2020.  Issue #5,000.
  Today is a bit of a milestone for our family's small business here.  The best I can calculate, this is the 5,000th edition of what is currently known as the 'Van's Air Force News'.  It goes back 19.25 years to the first M-F online editions of the 'Van's Air Force - North Texas Wing'.  If memory serves, for over a decade I would wake up at 0445 and work on 'the site' until 0545 (many years with a 9600 baud modem), then shower and go to my I.T. job at 0630.  Don't wake up the baby!  Work on the RV in the evening a little and then some more 'site work' before bed.  VAF has been my full time job since 2007, and a wonderful teaching tool for my kids on what hard work and determination can achieve (like building your own plane!).

  Let's do 5,000 more - I'll be 73 in 19 years <g>.  I started this at age 31.  Thank you to all those who make this place so special.  I'm honored to call so many of you friend, and I'll keep trying my hardest to bring you a quality product.  One of the great joys of my life is how many friends I have made through all this.
  Wishing you and yours a safe, happy and RV-filled weekend.
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)


Homebuilt Accidents: Focus on Van's ...Kitplanes

The RV series has an excellent safety record. By Ron Wanttaja -January 15, 2020 (with Van's sidebar)


Random flat tire / tyre? ...Glen

What might cause the following:
Went to the hangar and one tire was flat.
It wasn't flat the day before or the day before that.
I had flown 7 days prior.
Put air in the time and it's been 24hr and it's still at same pressure. (will continue to monitor for multiple days.)
No externally visible signs of trauma.
Local weather has been moderate. Hangar temps have remained in the range of 48F-64F.
No climatic evidence on the airplane.
No visible stresses evident on the plane.

I want to monitor for another 48 hours before I remove the wheel and do a soap-bubble test.


System Holes in Wing Ribs ...iamtheari RV-14

I began drilling the systems holes in my left wing ribs tonight and realized that I should make sure that I have enough room for the systems my plane will have. I am not doing anything that hasn't been done before, so probably someone has already sorted this out.

Here's the inventory of what needs to go through the wings:
* Standard wiring harness
* 2 wires in left wing (pitot heat ground, taxi light)
* 1 wire in right wing (taxi light)
* Coax cable in right wing for nav antenna in wingtip
* Pitot and AOA tubing in left wing, all the way to the subpanel since the ADAHRS will be there
* Garmin magnetometer in left wing ADAHRS mount

I think that I can run the pitot line in the upper aft systems holes of the left wing all the way to the root, the AOA line in the lower aft systems holes, and the nav antenna cable in the lower aft systems holes of the right wing through the first 8 ribs and the forward systems hole in the remaining 6 ribs.

The only conflicts I see in that plan come from the ADAHRS wiring harness, which connects to the magnetometer in the Garmin installation. That is supposed to run in the lower aft systems holes in the second, third, and fourth ribs of the left wing. It seems likely that the wires will be long enough to run it along with the main wiring harness in the forward systems holes.

In the right wing, there is no conflict, the coax cable would just cross over the main wiring harness between the sixth and seventh ribs.

What have others with Garmin avionics and a wingtip nav antenna done?

I used some PEX to make a conduit for both wings: It came in handy running cable for Archer wingtip antenna as well as heavy 14Ga wire to pitot heat. Plus a bit of future flexibility.


RE: Flutter Testing (Not RV but eye opening)

"...Fourth point, reflected in the FARs is if you have a trim tab on a control surface, the Vne series should be repeated with the control arm (actuator) to the tab disconnected to determine if a broken connection will not contribute to flutter..."

I would HIGHLY discourage this kind of test...from personal experience.

I had a C-421 that had a "failure" of the bolt connecting the right elevator trim tab to it's linkage. (The failure was due to negligence of the company that did the annul inspection.) The failure occurred at 16,000 feet climbing to a cruise altitude, at a speed SIGNIFICANTLY less than Vne.

When the bolt came out of the linkage, the right elevator began to flutter in a divergent mode, resulting in an airplane that was nearly uncontrollable. Luckily, the two elevator torque tubes are joined in the middle with bolts through a flange. These bolts sheared, separating the elevators. It also stopped the flutter.

This happened in the space of about 5 seconds.

The aircraft was flown to a successful landing with one elevator in control and the other in trail...lucky to say the least.

Flutter is nothing to mess around with, and it doesn't matter if you THINK you are the ace of the base...
Aerospace Engineer '88


Today's View From the Hangar ...RV-6 rebuild project

With the aid of the same kind neighbor that helped me install the wings two days ago, I pulled the left wing. It turns out the end of a drilled rivet was what was pushing the spar leaves apart - especially annoying as I fastidiously vacuumed in there before sliding everything together. ...



January 16, 2020.  Issue #4,999. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

RV-6 Rebuild Project in Palm Springs ...jamlip


New RV-12iS Throttle Handle Option Available ...mothership

Van's has released a new, optional throttle handle/grip that is now available for all RV-12iS aircraft. The new handle is an alternative "blade" style design that can be used to replace the "T" style handle that is standard on the aircraft/kit, and has proven popular with some of the factory pilots while testing.

Installation of this new handle, which is compatible with the R-12iS airframe only (not an option for the original RV-12) is simple and a kit is available from Van's that owners can use for retrofit. Order "KIT 12iS THROTTLE GRIP" form the Van's online store.

ELSA customers may order and install this option immediately. The kit includes installation instructions as well as the necessary parts.

For SLSA customers, documentation approving and allowing installation of this optional kit on RV-12iS SLSA aircraft is available on the Van's Safety and Service Information page for the RV-12iS under SL 19-10-30 (note: link added)


Falcon Flight Formation Clinic 2020 Update

Falcon Flight will host a Formation Training Clinic on April 24/25/26 2020 at the Draughon-Miller Central Texas Regional Airport - KTPL, in Temple TX. The weather-out dates will be 1-3 May. This clinic will fly under the standards of Formation Flying Inc. - FFI.

We have created a group at HERE 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, including hotel info. Please watch that site closely for further details and updates.

A limit of 30-35 participants is in place. All formation pilots are welcome, whether newcomers and advanced. We will conduct mandatory safety briefings and a formation ground school, and we'll also go over 8900.1 rules 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 (updated soon and often). We have two hotels supporting this clinic: Residence Inn Marriott and Holiday Inn. If you intend to participate, make sure to get your room booked early before the group rate expires. You can cancel up to 24 hours prior to arrival at no penalty.

Sid "Scroll" Mayeux, Col, USAF (ret)
52F Aero Valley Airport, Roanoke TX


Garmin's New GI 275


Houston area monthly lunch (January 2020)

Time to start another year of BSing over lunch. Let's hit up the Aviator's Grill at Hooks again, this Saturday (18th) at 11:30.

I think somebody wanted to get a look at my Flyleds landing lights (Bjorn maybe?), so hopefully I'll actually remember to bring them this time...
-8 fuselage in progress



January 15, 2020.  Issue #4,998. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

RV-12iS Service Bulletin - SB 19-08-06 - AV-60000 and AV-60009 Recall ...mothership

"Van's Aircraft has published a new Service Bulletin (SB 19-08-06) that describes steps to be taken on certain RV-12iS aircraft, in order to capture detailed photographs of two electronic components and then send the photos to Van's for review.

In limited cases, solder on AV-60000 and AV-60009 electronics modules may not have been heated sufficiently to ensure a strong enough solder joint. In those cases, there exists the potential for intermittent electronic issues.

Photographic examination of the components will allow Van's staff to visually determine whether or not the module's solder joints are properly formed and acceptable. In the event the soldering of a module in the field is determined to be insufficient, the module will need to be shipped to Van's for service. In this case, Van's will pay the shipping costs to return the defective module to Van's, and to deliver the repaired/replacement module to the customer.

When taking the photographs, please ensure that 1) plenty of light illuminates the subject - a flashlight or similar source may be used, and that 2) the photos are close-in, sharp and taken in high resolution. Most modern smartphones should be able to produce acceptable images.

Note that Van's has identified and confirmed the root cause of this issue and has made changes to its manufacturing processes as a result."
Greg Hughes - Van's Aircraft - Community, Media, Marketing


How to get plane into hangar up ramp slope

I just got a hangar for my RV-12 (a brag-worthy accomplishment in Southern California). I love having the plane in a hangar. But I have to muscle the plane up a slight incline to get it inside. I can do it using a tow bar to push and steer, but it's very tough. So I am looking for some electric power assistance.

I can install a winch (with a remote control on/off switch) to pull the plane in. But I wonder whether I'd damage the plane if I attach the winch cable to the tail tie-down ring.

I ask about using a winch because it would be dramatically less expensive than an electric airplane tug. Even for a plane as light as an RV-12, the least expensive tug I've found is $1,500.

Information about your experience, and your opinions, will be welcomed with thanks.
Lon Sobel
Santa Monica, CA
RV-12, N58CV


RV-7 Status Report  ...nilberg


G3X Touch Software Update 8.61 (1/14/2020) ...g3xpert


We released G3X Touch Version 8.61 to the Software Download Area today. After updating the software in the PFD1 with the SD card, the display will reset, and at that time it is best to hold down on the Menu button while it starts up in Configuration mode. Go to the System Information page on the PFD1 and watch all devices completing the software update before taking the PFD1 out of configuration mode and verifying proper operation for the updated system.

This is a maintenance update to address an issue with the GSU 25D in which airspeed would be invalidated at airspeeds over 300 KIAS. In addition to this, we provided a correction for the calculation of oil pressure in Rotax 912 and 914 engines with the Rotax 456180 oil pressure sensor.

Changes from V8.60 to V8.61

- Improve airspeed range reporting for GSU25D installations in aircraft exceeding 300 KIAS
- Update Rotax 456180 absolute oil pressure sensor to compensate for standard atmospheric pressure
- Includes update to GSU25C/D software version 2.20
- Includes G5 software version 6.40
- Includes G5 boot block software version 2.20
- Includes GAD13 software version 2.00
- Includes GAD13 boot block software version 2.00
- Includes GAD27 software version 2.30
- Includes GAD27 boot block software version 2.30
- Includes GAD29 software version 3.20
- Includes GAD29 boot block software version 3.10
- Includes GDL39 software version 4.81
- Includes GDL5x software version 2.13
- Includes GEA24 software version 3.70
- Includes GEA24 boot block software version 2.20
- Includes GI260 software version 2.80
- Includes GI260 boot block software version 2.20
- Includes GMA245 audio software version 2.20
- Includes GMA245 Bluetooth software version 2.00
- Includes GMA245 software version 2.70
- Includes GMA245 boot block software version 2.30
- Includes GMC507 software version 2.90
- Includes GMC507 boot block software version 2.30
- Includes GMU11 software version 2.00
- Includes GMU11 boot block software version 2.00
- Includes GPS20A software version 2.30
- Includes GPS20A boot block software version 2.10
- Includes GSA28 software version 4.50
- Includes GSA28 boot block software version 2.20
- Includes GSU25/B software version 3.90
- Includes GSU25/B boot block software version 2.20
- Includes GSU25C/D boot block software version 2.00
- Includes GSU73 software version 3.70
- Includes GSU73 IGRF database version 1.03 (Base Year 2015)
- Includes GTR20/200 software version 3.30
- Includes GTR20/200 boot block software version 2.30




A Wide Angle Camera Test ...

My new iPhone (6 to 11) came with an 'ultra wide lens', so I thought I would test it out.  Click image for 2,560 x 1,828 pixel version.

2,560 x 1,828



January 14, 2020.  Issue #4,997. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Almost ready to fly! ...leok

Well after 5 years and 4 months I'm almost there. I got my airworthiness inspection yesterday! There wasn't anyone there to take a picture so this is the best we could do. My DAR said I didn't look very happy in the photo. I told him that was my happy face!  ...


Airport Weather Station ...Vlad

I will be based at an airport without weather reporting station. It is in rural area (Intermountain Utah 33U) and aviation weather is very unique. I am wondering if there is a portable weather station on the market I can buy and install in the immediate vicinity? I understand there maybe some sort of FCC permit required. Did anybody install similar at your private strip or knows the process? Would appreciate any intel or reference.


Let the Crawling Under the Dash Begin

I need to run a wire from my 430W out to my GTX330ES for ADBS-B OUT.....which means pulling everything out so I can get my hairy, semi-arthritic, wrinkled hands back there.  I haven't taken all this stuff out in years and years.  Forgot how 'fun' it was. ;^)

2,560 x 494


Avionics Installation for Experimental Aircraft Course - February 17-19, 2020

Greetings VAF! ...g3xpert

Once again the Aircraft Electronics Association will be hosting an Avionics Installation for Experimental Aircraft course, on February 17-19, 2020, at their headquarters in Lee's Summit, MO (Kansas City Suburb). For complete details and registration information, please visit the AEA Course Website.

This has been a popular training opportunity that includes hands-on wiring and avionics installation fundamentals, heavily focused on the Garmin G3X Touch system. Many VAF members have attended this course in the past! It is a 3-day course at a registration cost of $499. There are a limited number of spots available and space fills quick!

Let us know if you have any questions!

Best Regards,



Panel Porn ...leok

Here is the best photo of my panel that I have. The PFD and G5 are a little washed out. The panel is all Garmin G3X touch.
Not a 6, but I guess it's ok to show a 10 panel?


Jan/Feb FAA Safety Briefing ...38pg free PDF.


Looking for Panel Thoughts (and update) ...jamesdavid

Now that I know the big-ticket items, I am trying to figure out the best way to organize switches and breakers. This is what I have come up with. Apart from the general layout, some of the specific questions I still have are:
Should I put the GAD 29 on the Avionics bus, or the Main Bus? It is only needed for the Avionics (GNX 375 and GNC 255), but other examples placed it on the Main bus...
I have a breaker and a switch for the GAP 26 Pitot Heat. Any reason not to just use a Switch Breaker?

Thoughts and input appreciated...



January 13, 2020.  Issue #4,996. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

GMC 507 RV-6 Glare Shield Mount Update ...dr

Tony Kirk at Van's (proto shop guy doing this on his own time) sent me an email on Sunday with his first 3D printing of the 507 mount idea.  He said he wanted to tweek something and print it again, but he gave me permission to post this pic.  How dang cool is this thing going to be!?!?!  Very excited!!!!  Per Tony's wishes, when the bugs get worked out the SolidWorks file will be hosted here for free download if you want to print one yourself.

enlarge / panel upgrades


Panel Update ...DeeCee 57

"...latest iteration of my panel. Loads of fun painting and working on a riveted (yes, non-removable), panel <g>"


Long Term Review of the CQ1 Headset + Comparisons to the competition ...Guy Prevost

About a year ago, I wrote a rave review about the CQ1 Headset by Card Machine Works.  I'm likely biased in my opinion, but such bias is hard won and isn't always a bad thing. I've known Scott and Tanya for years. I think very highly of them. I've met few individuals with their combination of integrity, drive, intelligence, and capability. To find a pair of them marching forward together in life is a true gift. Enough of the disclaimer, on to the review.   ...


VansAirForce.net Charity Cap Sighting ...Planecrazy232

At the auction of Steve McQueen's 'Bullitt' Mustang.


RV12iS interior pics ...Barry B.

Q: Wondering if anyone can post some pictures of the complete installed interior on the RV12iS (including floor, side panels, baggage compartment, etc.). I'm interested in knowing what will need to be painted.

A: (jrtens)


$13 at Lowes ...new lease on life for the air tank.

$13 at Lowes and I had a new, longer hose for my portable air tank (original hose is too short and cheap).  A pair of small locking vise grips replaced the stripped plastic knob for shutting off the air, and I have a nice refurbished solution for the hangar tires. 



Real World Numbers, Am I Missing Something? ...OneTwoTree (9/9A)

Let me start by saying long time lurker first time post. My mission is to travel and get my IFR ticket (for safety not for necessity). So naturally the 9 comes into picture. The 14 is a bit too rich for my blood. I want to be done at 80K with an IFR machine not 100K. The 9 is attractive, but I'm still dumbfounded that it only has a 36 gal capacity. Imagine my excitement when I find the Hotel Whiskey extended tanks. Then I ran the numbers:

empty weight 1050 (middle of average according to Van's site)
fuel weight 216 = 1266
A/C weight 48 = 1314 (Not negotiable according to the treasury)
HW ER Tanks 10 = 1324
ER fuel weight 60 = 1384
pilot weight 200 = 1584
co-pilot weight 150 = 1734

This leaves 16 pounds for bags ......... not good

When I run the same numbers for the 7 I get:

empty weight 1100 (middle of average according to Van's site)
fuel weight 252 = 1362
A/C weight 48 = 1410 (Not negotiable according to the treasury)
HW ER Tanks not needed
ER fuel weight not installed
pilot weight 200 = 1610
co-pilot weight 150 = 1760

40 pounds of bags.

You can't have it all. I know that. I could have the ER tanks installed and if they are unfilled I've added 60 pounds that I could carry (76 total for baggage).

Overall I'm just suprised that the 9 only has a 36 gallon capacity. I get that it's a cross counry maching for many reasons, but that is not one. Using 8GPH I'm getting 3.5 hrs aloft with a 1hr saftey buffer.



January 10, 2020.  Issue #4,995.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.
  (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

My RV Weekend ...Northernliving RV-8

Not quite last weekend, but one of my last weekends flying in 2019. Took a flight out to Chatham, MA on Cape Code to take my bride to brunch. First shot it of the Chatham historic Lighthouse with the airport in the distance (CQX), followed by the Cape Cod National Seashore in Wellfleet, followed by the tip of the Cape - Provincetown Aiport(PVC) and then flying through the BOS Bravo back home.


Extended Squitter (ES) Upgrade ...ADS-B out....CHECK!

My Garmin GTX330 transponder arrived back from the factory after getting its ADS-B makeover - my 330 is now a 330ES and ADS-B complient.   I'll put it back in the RV this weekend, finish the oil change, and go fly next week to verify stuff while I build some cables for other things (507, etc).   I got it back quicker than I thought I would.



Status Report ...vernh59 RV-7

Been busy with the holidays and such but still working. more



Rob's Dedicated Air Cart

Rob and Scott across the runway from me use this to air up everything around the hangar, and it's growing on me.  Rolls it to whatever, plugs in the extension cord and air.  Trailer, tractor, Airstream, RV-7, motorcycle and more.  You don't have to move stuff around and you don't have to maintain a long air hose.

I may have to modify my taco cart - I sure do like this.  Just plug into the nearest outlet.



Epoxy and Microballon Practice Begins ...David Paule RV-3B

It's been a while since I worked with epoxy and microballoons and foam, and since I had enough stuff to work with, I decided to make a practice kit.

Starting at the far back, is a roll of fiberglass cloth which I didn't use today. Just in front of that is a bag of microballoons, left over from the sailboat I had the first decade of this century. Then the tall can is some epoxy resin, Rhino or Jeffco 1307 LV, and to its right is a quart of the associated medium hardener. At the right of the hardener is my mixing cup and the two pieces of scrap foam that I glued together with the microballoon and epoxy mix.

In the foreground we can see the gram scale and the syringes I used to meter out the resin and hardener.

This is the first time I'd used this resin system. Steve Smith recommended it, and so far, based on this one trial, I like it. It's available from Aircraft Spruce. Previously I'd mostly used the West Systems epoxy.

The gram scale measures and reads down to 1/100 of a gram. The closest I could get to the goal weight was about .03 grams and that took some doing. Frankly, I don't think that precision was necessary, but that's a guess; I don't really know.

The mix had the consistency of peanut butter. I could have made it drier and if I repeat the experiment, I probably will.

I'll let this cure completely and then carve and shape it and sand it to see how it feels.


Recently Reported on the Mothership



January 9, 2020.  Issue #4,994. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

My RV Weekend  ...Bob Kuykendall

Not that weekend, but in the days leading up to it, Steve Smith flew me from Ashland down to Montague in his RV-8 to see the skunk works shop where he and Bob Mills are making the tapered carbon fiber wings that will be going onto Bob's Rocket Six. The day started with an overcast, but cleared up for a beautiful trip across the Siskiyous.  ...


How to fix RV-6A that needs large changes in elevator trim ...mtnflyr

I bought a 6A some time ago and need some help understanding what changes I can make to it to reduce the need for large changes in elevator trim.

On final, I can't trim out the stick force with full nose-up trim. It's manageable, but I like to trim to a stable hands-off state and I can't do that today.

For takeoff, flaps up, the airplane rotates nicely with a fair amount of nose-up trim, and I have to trim aggressively down as the airplane accelerates. This isn't a huge deal for a normal takeoff but makes the airplane a handful on a go-around.

The trim movements I need to go from 80 mph to 120 mph are significant - much more than I'd like to have to do.

What should I check? CG comes to mind - I'm guessing that the airplane has a CG that is further forward than optimum. Would forward CG cause the need to trim more than a properly balanced aircraft? I don't want to start messing with stuff without understanding the aerodynamics causing the behavior I'm seeing.

The set up: Lycoming O-360 with a Hartzell constant speed prop. Battery on the aft side of the firewall.


Status Report  ...jamlip

May have jumped the gun on this - it's still a long way from flying. But I wanted to get the wings on it, so off it goes to the Palm Springs International Airport...


Panel Cut / Fit  ...nilberg

I managed to finalize my layout and get the panel cut, painted and engraved (Steinair).

I also managed to use all my savings money on avionics, sans GTN-650, as if I knew GTN-650XI would come (which I didn't, I just ran out of cash and got the GTN mounting bracket only).
I was fun though to unpack and inventory everything except GTN-650 only to wake up this morning to find out about the 6xx Xi series....

Of course I had to test the fit:


SB 12-11-09 Query / Update? ...Piper J3

SB 12-11-09 - Center Section Modification

I bought my RV-12 early SN (120058) from the original builder with 48TT knowing that SB for Center Section and Fuel Tank were not completed. I flew for a year before completing these two service bulletins. I guess I was having too much fun and the RV smile wasn't wearing off. So, in my case the Center Section Modification was completed at 205TT. No cracks were found during the work. This area is given extra care for visual inspection during Annual Condition Inspection. No cracks at current 521TT.

The reason for resurrecting this thread is to see how this fix is holding up to the test of time. I fly off of a private grass strip that is not very smooth. The runway has not been rolled for the past two years and frost heave in the winter has worked its magic. I would imagine my landing gear has been subjected to near maximum abuse short of training flights and really poor landings.

Has anyone noticed new cracks forming or propagation of existing cracks that were stop-drilled during the SB?

As a reminder, the attached photo is included in SB 12-11-09.


Garmin G5 Software 6.30 Now Available (1/8/2020) ...g3xpert

We released G5 Software Version 6.30 to the software download area today. While the majority of the changes are behind-the-scenes improvements, there are a couple of items worth mentioning.

When a GAD 13 is installed in a G5 system, OAT data will be transmitted to any connected Garmin Navigator through the GAD 29 ARINC 429 Interface.

This software update includes the necessary support for G3X Touch MFD only installations, as outlined in a previous post.

Changes made from version 6.20 to 6.30:
- Added support for G3X system configurations with no ADAHRS LRUs
- Added support for sending GAD 13 OAT data over ARINC 429
- Improved SD card flight data logging
- General improvements to system operation
- Includes update to GAD 29 software version 3.20
- Includes GMC 507 software version 2.80
- Includes GSA 28 software version 4.40
- Includes GMU 11 software version 2.00

As always, please let us know if you have any questions regarding this software update.



January 8, 2020.  Issue #4,993. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

My RV Weekend ...KatanaPilot

Flew with my son and did some formation with a neighbor in a Cessna 195. One of the other pilots took a few photos.


My RV Weekend ...bruceh

Saturday: Gorgeous day, so up for an hour of messing around practicing some lazy-8's and over to Carlsbad for a landing.

Sunday: I got to ride shotgun with BillC and the Ramona Formation flying gang. That was very cool. I expect now I'll have to join them and continue the fun and learning everything formation-wise.
After that I was hungry so I flew solo off to Hemet for a quick lunch special (BBQ beef sandwich was tasty). I got an email asking for some potential assistance fixing a busted up wing tip that met its fate against a car which carelessly backed into the airplane (RV-6A). Did a detour to Santa Monica around and under the LAX Bravo to take a quick look at the damage, and then on the way back I stopped for gas in Corona.

3.6 hours (not counting the right seat time).


New Product Announcement: GTN 650Xi & GTN 750Xi Series IFR Navigators (1/6/2020) ...g3xpert

We are excited to announce our new GTN 650Xi and GTN 750Xi as the latest addition to the Garmin product line of touchscreen IFR navigators.

Designed as a direct slide-in upgrade to the previous generation GTN 650/750, pilots can preserve their panel and modernize the cockpit with the new GTN 650Xi and GTN 750Xi. Available in five different versions, the GTN Xi series matches its predecessor in providing options with or without COMM or NAV radios. The all-in-one GTN 750Xi GPS/NAV/COMM boasts a large feature-rich multifunction display and can integrate with new or existing remote-mount equipment such as a transponder or audio panel. Dual-core processors and modern hardware also prepare the GTN Xi series for advanced capabilities in the future. The GTN 650Xi and GTN 750Xi have received FAA approval and are available immediately for fixed-wing single-engine and multi-engine piston, turbine and experimental aircraft.  more


AOA Sensor Probe ...how Sam B. did it.

Very easy to make a probe with 1/4" copper or aluminum tubing. Here is a pitot static probe I made for one of my aircraft:

To make an AOA probe from this basic design, eliminate the small holes and plug in the static probe and bend the lower ram probe down at a 45* angle. The top tube will now be the high pressure port and the bent, lower probe the low pressure port. You may need to slightly bend the lower tube via flight test to get your LRI to indicate properly at stall AOA. The design of this probe can be tweaked to make it look better....make the tubes closer together...fill in the gap with epoxy...etc.....

The indicator referenced in the above post is the same one used in the LRI system and works as well as the Lift Reserve Indicator I've been flying for nearly 20 years in my RV-6. The LRI is my primary indicator for max performance takeoffs and landings.


Nuckolls Z-13, but with a real standby alt vs. SD-8? ...N546RV

My questions will continue until morale improves...

First, for reference, the aforementioned Z-13 schematic, since I'm sure few of us can recall these things on-demand (click for larger image):


Here's a Few Weight Saving Ideas ...Tdeman

I've been trying to save weight wherever possible on my RV-6 build and will share a few of the things I did. Now, I have a running bet with a few guys on what my empty weight will be, so you'll notice some of these get increasingly maniacal. I'll spare you the full on weight-psycho stuff until I weigh in and either have to use it or not.

A lot of people mention the wood prop saving 25-30 lbs, but then go and put a 18lb crush plate on the nose for CG reasons With that in mind, I focused my weight savings at the tail. Ideally allowing me to run a composite prop without a weight up front.

Starting at the tail:
-Using the classic RV-6 VS and rudder (no counterbalance) (sorry 7/8/9 builders, not an option).
-Built a new set of .016 elevator skins using RV-7 counter balance arms which are longer, and position the CW horizontally, thus requiring less counterweight. (The combination of elevator counterweight and skins will be nearly a 2lb reduction alone)
-Turned a titanium tailspring on the lathe (1lb saved).
-Planning to do a billet tailwheel fork and Ti axle.
-Scallop the mating flange of the fairings and pop rivet instead of screw on.
-MS-21042 instead of AN-365's
-Round and taper those corners on your 1/8" angles and straps in the tail.

I'm hoping that by pulling 4-5lbs out of the aft-most point on the aircraft, I'm able to run a ground-adjustable composite prop without any extra weight up front (saving another 10-15lbs). Engine is a carb'd O-320.

Then of course are all the easy ones throughout the rest of the aircraft:
-Build a taildragger
-MS-21042's instead of AN-365's
-Minimal interior
-Single EFIS Glass Panel with LRU's mounted as close to power/data hub as possible.
-Careful and efficient wiring throughout (See AC-43.13B for calcs and help on minimizing wire size).
-Fuses instead of circuit breakers
-Single (or double) set of seat back hinges. Single seat back angle per side on the cross bar (speaking of which, lighten that piece of angle up!)
-Lithium battery (Easy 10lb saved compared to an Odyssey, 20lb lighter than a concord).
-Aluminum battery box (see RV-14 battery box if using an odyssey).
-Aluminum hard lines instead of rubber hose wherever feasible.
-Single set of brakes. (And throw those master cylinders in the lathe or mill to get rid of all the extruded material between the ports.)

Sometimes I ask myself if it's worth it... However, flying a heavy and lightweight RV back to back often reminds me that it is not in vain.


My RV Weekend ...PHOTO01

Last week I (finally) managed to get some photos of our family RV-6 in front of the WWII-era hangar at KTHA:



January 7, 2020.  Issue #4,992.
  Welcome to Tuesday.  The Wednesday edition, which would usually be pushed out around 0000Z, will instead be pushed out sometime in the 1300-1400Z timeframe.  I'm working a supplemental income side paper route in the PC-12NG Tuesday.  Learning hat on.  I'll be far too confused, possibly lost, to type.
  Sid put out a food trip vid in his 7A recently, and Monday I happened to be near both the tripod and radio when he entered the pattern.  "Touch down at Charlie if you can."  Within about six feet of the center of Charlie is pretty dang good. 
Slo Mo video.
  See you Wednesday morning sometime.
(Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Weekend RV Activity ...DanH

evening in Alabama, so I got in some formation practice. Quick over the shoulder shot from Stan Tew, passenger in Kirk Harrell's Mustang II:


Weekend Mx ...crabandy

I noticed the brake pads getting a little thin during the condition inspection (450 hours), 2nd flight after the condition inspection my main alternator voltage was venturing above 15 volts. She needed a little more love.
I do not like to rush my aircraft maintenance, it's about balancing research during lunch breaks at work and ordering parts to coincide with free time to put things together at the airport. I ordered new pads, brake rivet tool and regulator. Thanks to Allen at Hartzell Engine Technologies for listening and answering my questions about my PP Alt.  more


First Time Post and Buyer

Hello new friends.

I am about to complete my private pilot certificate. I'm also about to graduate veterinary school and am heavily considering taking a job around 600 miles from home. They want me to work part of the week, and I'm considering going back home and working/being with family the remainder of the week. I wouldn't do this every week, just kind of depends on the weather.

Because of this, I'm heavily considering buying a plane. My mission would be 600 mile cross countries by myself. Want something quick, fuel efficient, and a good plane for IFR conditions (plan to get instrument certificate soon after private). Right now considering 6, 7, or 9's. Prefer the side by side seating, prefer a tricycle gear but I'm willing to get tail wheel endorsement for the right situation.
So my main question, how difficult would it be to overhaul the panel on some of these older rv-6's or cheaper built rv-9's? Adding auto-pilot? I'm pretty handy for the most part, decent on electronics, but I'm pretty good at problem solving and finding a way to get something done.

Any input on any of this is greatly appreciated.
Thank you.


Slo Mo #5 ...


RV-6 engine replacement ...pros and cons

My RV-6 is on about 1830 hours. I'll have an annual condition inspection in October, then I think there'll be engine work in 2021.

Current engine is a carburetted O-320-D2A with a Sensenich fixed-pitch cruise prop.

I didn't build the aircraft.

The current fuel system has plumbing feeding an Andair valve supplying the suction side of a Facet fuel pump on the inside wall of the fuselage between the pilot seat and the rudder pedals, with the pump discharge feeding a gascolator on the engine side of the firewall, which in turn runs to the engine-driven fuel pump.

It's still more than a year and a half away, but planning is good, and the direction I'm tending towards now is to take the O-320-D2A off and replace it with some variant of an IO-360, probably also with a fixed-pitch prop.

The change from carburettor to fuel injection is going to involve fuel system modifications: I'm anticipating that the Facet pump will end up in the trash, with a new high pressure fuel pump and new plumbing.

I'm sure someone has gone down the path of carb to fuel injection before, and if anyone has advice I'd love to hear about it.

Are folks generally keeping high-pressure fuel out of the cockpit, so where's the right spot for the electric pump? Is the gascolator necessary? Considerations for routing fuel lines to avoid vapor lock? How are fuel systems handled in modern certified aircraft? Anything else I'm not thinking of?


- mark


Got the panel put together ...Rons

Nothing is wired yet but I cut the panels, covered them in flat black vinyl wrap, and labeled them. Then I got everything mounted. Tada!

Thanks to Jared Solomon for the inspiration on this (Okay... I more or less just copied his panel with a couple minor changes. It's hard to argue with success. )

Let me know what you think.


Possible mistake on RV-14A Rudder Spar Reinforcement Plates ...jdog0411

Wanted to get the forum's opinion on the following...I've sent this to Vans technical support for their opinion as well, but in the meantime thought I would ask here also.

I recently completed riveting the Rudder Spar Reinforcement Plates onto the rudder spar for my RV-14A. I riveted them to the spar with the shop head on the spar side of the spar, when in retrospect I probably should have riveted them with the shop head on the plate side of the spar since that is the thicker material. The plans didn't specify, so I didn't think it would matter one way or the other.  more


Hartzell Engine Technologies Press Release



Under the partnership agreement with Lycoming, beginning January 06, 2020, Lycoming factory overhauled and rebuilt engines will no longer be shipped to the end-customer with alternators or accessories. Going forward, customers will now purchase Plane-Power components directly from Hartzell Engine Technologies.

Montgomery, AL (January 06, 2020) --Representatives of Hartzell Engine Technologies (HET) announced today that the company has partnered with Lycoming to now be the exclusive direct-to-customer provider of Plane-Power alternators and alternator assemblies for a factory overhauled and rebuilt engine.

"As the manufacturer of Plane-Power alternators and components, we have been providing alternators and accessories to Lycoming for all of their factory overhauled and rebuilt engines for a long time," stated Keith Bagley, President, Hartzell Engine Technologies. "The primary reason that we are now transitioning to the direct-to-customer supplier for these components, including full alternator assemblies and pullies, is to provide much better delivery and direct factory support to the end-customer."

"By eliminating the added steps of shipping to Lycoming and then to the customer, we can respond to the customer's needs, and correct any problems, faster and more efficiently," he said. "In addition, should an owner/operator want to upgrade their Plane-Power alternator, the factory-direct order model will make that process a lot easier."

Bagley also explained that while customers will now buy their Plane-Power alternators and assemblies directly from Hartzell Engine Technologies in the majority of cases, there are some unique situations where, depending on engine model and configuration, alternator brackets and belts will continue to be installed and/or supplied with some Lycoming factory overhauled and rebuilt engines.

Because the transition is happening very quickly, Bagley provided additional details that will help clarify some key points:

- Customers who take delivery of their Lycoming factory overhauled or rebuilt engines, prior to January 06, 2020, which include Lycoming factory-supplied alternators are still required to return an alternator with their exchange core engine.

- Customers who order Lycoming factory overhauled or rebuilt engines on or after January 06, 2020, may keep their existing alternators or replace them at their discretion based on either the condition of the alternator or Instructions for Continued Airworthiness (ICA) where applicable.

- Lycoming Service Instruction No. 1154, FAA-Approved Starters and Alternators, will continue to be an active document.

- The next revision of Lycoming Service Instruction No. 1154, (S.I.1154W) will provide additional HET part numbers for alternators and alternator assemblies available directly from Hartzell Engine Technologies.

"The end-goal of this process is to ensure that aircraft owner/operators and their maintenance providers will enjoy a greatly improve overall customer experience when ordering and installing our Plane-Power alternators and components," Bagley said. "In addition, should they ever experience an issue, having direct contact with our technical experts here at the factory will make that whole process easier and more efficient."

Link to Lycoming Service Letter No. L277 explaining the transition: here

Dale Smith
Media Relations Representative
Hartzell Engine Technologies



January 6, 2020.  Issue #4,991. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

RV Flying I Did in '19 ...plehrke

I did not do any cross countries in 2019 but did do a lot of local flying around STL.  49 flights, 50.4 hours, >7000 nm.  Not a typical year due to loosing 3 months of flying due to airport and hangar flooded this summer.  Can you tell where the control tower airports are in STL?


Time for year 13 numbers! ...petehowell 9A

The morning was a bummer with the funeral for a co-worker's fiance, but clouds were clearing off, and I thought I would take the -9A up to get some yearly performance numbers......

Lower layer moving East - pretty nice day up at 7500! Pic looking south, you can see KANE in the distance.....  more


New Years Day 2020 ...newt in Australia

Our formation group has established a bit of a tradition over the last few years, of meeting up late in the morning on January 1st and flying somewhere "interesting," usually for a spot of lunch.

This year was slightly different: Glenn volunteered to lead, and planned to take a 6-ship around Sydney Harbour.

It started with a formation briefing, six pilots and six passengers. Half a dozen RVs departing runway 11C at Bankstown in two elements of three, with yours truly leading the second element.  ...


Oil Change Results

Still waiting the Blackstone results for this change but wanted to share my results and get some feedback...

No air-oil separator on breather
~30 hours on oil
Used about 1qt in that 30 hours with level kept at 6-6.5 qts.

Prior analysis showed "upper end" (Blackstone comment) corrosion which coincides with limited use while the aircraft sat for sale with limited flying last year. Jug was pulled during pre-buy to look at cam and tappets, which were normal.

I flew aircraft for 45 mins and drained oil. This was an easier than expected, but a little messy pulling screen.

Here's what I observed...
Oil was remarkibly clean looking for 30 hours. With the limited burn I would guess this means the upper end is runing tight with limited blow-by.
Screen caught a small amount of carbon and what seemed to been some old rubber gasket/seal material. Total...it was an immeasurable amount with no metal
Oil filter - Filter media inspected and run over with strong magnet, no metal found
Oil filter media washed with mineral spirts and fluid was strained in coffee filter, no metal, and only few small specks of carbon found
Strong magnet was placed in jar while washing filter media to pick up anything ferrous. Only a very small amount of ferrous material was found (see picture).
The ferrous material collected by the magnet was very fine...like dust, but there was a couple small flecks of metal < 0.5 mm wide and very thin. 


My 2019 flying stats ...Bruce Hill 9A

I got a chance yesterday to add up my logbook hours for 2019 and review some of my flying memories.


Slo Mo #4 ...


Status Update ...David Paule -3B

Here's the stack with some work ahead, like gluing, filling, shaping, smoothing, etc. You know, like all the work. But at least the void is filled.


RV-6 Rebuild Project Update ...jamlip

Still going with this thing...

Removed and de-sloshed the fuel tanks. They've been built oversize to 28 gallons each side, and when you stand them on their end, they're about as tall as me. It took me about ten hours per tank, and I used $150 of MEK.

Today I fitted new wing spar cover panels. The aircraft didn't come with any, depite there being evidence that there were once some fitted. Took ages - really annoying. At the same time, I made a centre section for the floor, since I've done-away with the standard battery box.  ...


Initial Contact ...Phil

Hi everyone,

I've been lurking on these forums for a number of years now and have gathered a ton of knowledge from all of you. There is a lot to absorb and I can say that this forum was one of the reasons I finally decided to start my RV-7 build.

I ordered and received my empennage kit back in the spring of 2019 and have been (very) slowly progressing on the build. I started with the wing and toolbox practice kits and learned a lot working through those "tutorials". Currently I'm working through the horizontal stabilizer, which is teaching me even more!

Being up here in the Great White North, the colder temperature in the shop in these winter months slows progress a bit. Working with what feels like (and probably is!) frozen aluminum requires a few more breaks back in the house to warm up!

Thanks again to all for sharing your experiences on the forum, it is an invaluable resource for RV builders!

Anyhow, just wanted to give a quick intro and I know I will be posting with more questions during the course of the build!



Mystery Airstrip ...Vlad


Is this a reasonable way to wire up my landing/taxi/wigwag lights? ...N546RV

The struggle to nail down my electrical system continues; let's talk about how I want to do my landing and taxi lights.

The light units will be Flyleds combo units, one in each leading edge. For those unfamiliar, each unit has four projectors, one of which can be separately switched and aimed to act as a taxi light. Since I'm building a TW aircraft, I intend to use that functionality. I also want to have wigwag functionality for these lights, and I intend to use the Flyleds wigwag module to do this. What I want is to have two switches: one three-way switch with OFF/TAXI/BOTH positions, and one two-way switch to enable wig-wag.

The first source of interest here is that the wigwag module only has single power outputs, one for the right wing and one for the left. I want the wig-wag function to power both the landing and taxi units, which means at that point the landing and taxi circuits must be tied together - which means I lose the ability to apply power only to one of those circuits when I want the TAXI/BOTH switch on.

The second is sort of the other side of that coin; if I want to have a single switch for OFF/TAXI/BOTH, then the power outputs there for landing and taxi are electrically tied together, which prevents the wigwag module from being able to only apply power to one wing.

Basically, the issue is that every circuit can backfeed every other one.

Now, I'm a bit naive when it comes to electronics, but offhand this seems like a problem that can be solved with diodes - strategically placed diodes prevent any leg of the circuit from backfeeding any other one. The only practical problem I see is that I'll incur a voltage drop at all times to these circuits. But some annoying part of my brain wants to think that this isn't the way this should be done.

So what I'm asking is: is this a reasonable approach, or not?


Initial Panel Ideas ...kentlik



(Vlad)  I was exploring new to me vicinities. Looking for a good ice in Wyoming

(rongawer) I modified my air intake.  Ok, so it's not earth shattering, or even sexy in any way, but I've been slowly modifying my intake to get the best performance, which I measure by air intake temperature and by manifold pressure.

What I did this weekend was put a scoop (cut and folded 0.032" scrap I had on hand) over my intake. No, it's not as aerodynamic as it could be or even aesthetically pleasing, but gets the job done. The idea was to validate for myself the difference between a NACA duct and scoop. I can tell you the scoop makes a huge difference.

(goatflieg) Still chipping away at the cowling and baffles. Started trimming baffles; getting closer... but I just don't see how RV-8 builders manage to get their oil cooler to fit in the stock position. If any -8 builders want to share photos of their finished baffles on the left side by the oil cooler, or if there are any -8 builders within 100 miles of Clarkston, MI that would be willing to allow me to inspect their cowlings and baffles, I'd be very grateful. (Hopefully Terry Lutz is reading this; then we'd finally get a chance to meet up! )

(tfriendshuh) Took advantage of some warm(ish) weather and flew out over the Apostle Islands



January 3, 2020.  Issue #4,990.
  It's amazing what you can capture in slow motion with just a modern smartphone and a tripod these days.  The mic picked up the tire squeal...pretty neat sound in slo mo.  These from my home field (52F) and my phone hardly trying - I'll work on my technique.  Simply amazing.  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV filled weekend. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Slo Mo 'Crazy Woman' RV-8 Landing

Slo Mo Kay F. RV-8A Takeoff

Slo Mo John Goodloe RV-8 Takeoff


A Silence ...Scott Chastain RV-8

The sun was already high up and shining brightly when I finally decided to get out of bed. It was the year 2020, and the percussion of mortars from the night before still punctured my memory like the blind bursting of complete darkness, of a part of my life that had been blown away, hopelessly and irrevocably, as into a void. There was that hollowness in the gut that often precedes a flight where uncertainty must have its way no matter how well-planned the flight is. The mortars reverberated in my brain as if exploding on some great battlefield where the world itself was tenuously hinged, and as I packed my gear and headed out the door, my dog was whining because she had to stay home without me.

I was airborne out of Merced (MCE) less than an hour later heading south at 11,500 feet. The Sierra Nevada range rose snow-capped to the port side, and further south, a portion of the San Joaquin Valley lay buried under a pale scab of fog.  continue


RV8 going IFR ...Jimmie Kemp

Q: I'm installing a pair of garmin G5s and a GNX 375 in my RV8. I would like some advice on where to mount the garmin antenna and magnetometer. Thank you.

A: (rv8ch)
For the Magnetometer, I went with the end of the left wing. I've got a GRT, so not 100% sure that Garmin wants theirs to be as far away from ferrous metal like GRT, but physics are physics.

The magnetometer is attached with double sided tape inside the 2nd hole in this picture.

A: (g3xpert)
The GMU 11 is an extremely sensitive magnetic sensor, so it is important to choose a suitable installation location, and properly align the unit when installing it. This table outlines the recommended separation from various types of magnetic interference.

You can basically use this as a way to prioritize what is most important to avoid. For a wing mounted unit, it will be important that any lights installed in the wing are not grounded to the air frame out in the wing. You will want to run a dedicated ground return back to the fuselage. Also any electrical conductor running through the wing, should be twisted, shielded, and routed as far away from the GMU 11 and its wiring harness as feasibly possible.

Feel free to reach out to us directly if you have any other questions that come up.


Recent Additions to Mothership First Flight Page



January 2, 2020.  Issue #4,989. (Need a part-time contract pilot?...DFW area)

Last Flight of 2019 (RV-14) ...Georges Grenet pics/vids


Spoiled Rotten ...Robert M

While in the midst of helping my wife get some "Pinch Hitter" training at a local airport, I let MY BFR lapse. So, I set up an appointment with one of the local flight school instructors to renew. Went through the usual "ground school" chat and headed for the C-172. Again, the usual pre-flight. Taxied out, rolled onto the runway and started the takeoff roll. Oh my gosh, was I dragging the fuel truck? Was the engine not delivering full power? I was concerned we weren't gonna be able to even rotate the nose wheel before running out of runway.

AND......during the initial ground roll, I told the instructor; "in my RV, we'd be off the ground by now". And when I got the 55kts to rotate the nose wheel, I told him; "in the RV, we'd be above pattern altitude by now". Then there was the, (what felt like), endless climb to the maneuvering altitude of 3,000 ft. Jeez, I don't remember it taking that long back when I rented 172's.

Please understand, I wasn't trying to brag although it sure sounded that way. No..... it was more like I was complaining. I have been so spoiled with how quickly the RV-9 can get up on the mains, rotate for takeoff and climb to altitude. Spoiled Rotten!

In retrospect, I can see more clearly that things happen SO much faster in the RV and a greater need for due diligence is required for all aspects of operation.


RV-4 (After Flight) ...Camillo (Italy)

Here is my new RV-4. Tail kit has been bought in 2011. I just made 3 flights and he flies straight. Power is more than adequate. He mounts a Lycoming YIO-320 160HP, a Catto 3-blade prop and a Christen oil system. Empty weight is 958 lbs.  more pics / video


Thank you all ...Tom Swearengen of TS Flightlines, LLC

I just wanted to take a minute to thank all the VAF family for the outpouring of support shown after Suzanne's passing. It was really unbelievable.
Its been a couple of weeks now, and yes its getting easier. I'm doing more cooking now, ( well ok Me and Zaxby's, Subway, etc) but as some of you have noticed, I've been working alot more. Yes it helps! My role has actually changed alittle from doing most of the hose assembly building to more of a concept/creation thing. I want to give a selfish plug to my business partner Steve Tschurwald of Aircraft Specialty, and our joint company AS Flightlines. Without him, alot of things that transpired the past 2 years would not have been possible.
When we came up with the idea of merging some parts of our 2 companies to better help all of you, neither one of us dreamed --or had a nightmare, depending on your position, that the merger concept would actually allow me to spend a bunch of time with Suzanne, and get her the best medical care available. If I was doing everything like I was at one point, she would probably have suffered MUCH more than she did, and at the same time, all of you clients possibly would have too. So, Steve---a toast to you my friend.
When bad things happen we sometimes dont have a clue who is affected. Suzanne didnt know alot of you, or had any actual contact with you. But she knew of you, and I can speak for her in saying that she appreciates the outpouring of love an support you have all shown. Its made both her and my transition easier. House is still quiet, but its feeling warmer, and I think its because shes near.

OK----so 2019 is leaving us, and 2020 is tonite. Steve and I have several new things that we'll be releasing. A few of which have already gotten out there. I wont go through them all, but some are already on the joint website asflightlines.com. LOL---my tsflightlines.com website is so outdated, and gee I'm not a computer guy so its just kind of sitting there. So most of the newer things ar on the AS Flightlines site. A couple of possibly relevant things-----I'm going to finish my 7A---Sue said she'd kick my butt if I didnt. Gee that means I have to straight out the shop, but it also creates more room. The intent here is to build several full scale mockups so we can do more R&D inhouse to speed things up some. These might include from baggage bulkhead to engine mount the cabins of 7A/9A, 10, 14A, and several other aircraft. In addition, due to popular demand, engine and accessory mockups for IO360, IO390, and IO540. Lots of different sump/servo combinations that you just cant plan for unless you have an actual engine sitting there equipped with the accessories youre trying to build data for. So, the idea is to have some of this here, so we can bolt on a sump and servo and get actual data on things----to make your lives easier. And at the same time, actually install the engine on the mockup and get real live dimensional data. Sounds crazy, and we probably could do it in Solidworks, but need the data to begin with. And---well its experimental, so everyone has a little different take on how they want their plane to be.
So we may be asking the VAF group if you have parts you want to sell/donate etc. Anyone priced a Superior cold sump lately? Or an Avstar servo---see it adds up FAST. All of this in due time---but its something that we think will be a huge benefit to all of you.

So--2020 will be here shortly---it will start off sad because my beautiful Suzanne is in heaven and not here, but knowing she beat cancer, and is better now gives me alot of peace. With the things we have in the works and planned, we will be busy, and that helps too. Several NEW projects are in concept stage now, and we'll be able to work on them.
One last note--Many of you over the years have asked about us doing a booth at AirVenture. Due to expenses, and time away from the shops we havent done one. But---with the new things we will be releasing, and some skunk works things too, maybe its time to do a booth. Those of you that do exhibit there know the money part, the time involved, and the total effort to make it happen. Some have said its a loosing proposition. Maybe so, but we think its a great way to get the word out, and let you see whats happening. Might surprise you!
More later on that--
Again thanks to all of you my friends, for all the kind thoughts and expressions of support over this difficult time


Status Report ...goatflieg


Panel Layout Feedback ...N546RV

OK folks, I think I've finally firmed up this panel design to the point where I want to get some feedback. Intended use case will be primarily day/night VFR. The aircraft will be IFR capable, even though the pilot probably won't be for another couple years.

Broad strokes of the setup are pretty self-explanatory: two 10" Skyview HDX displays, plus a Garmin GPS175 to fulfill the TSO'd GPS role. After much thought, I decided against a second COM radio; it's not depicted on this image, but there will be provision for connecting a handheld transceiver into the ship's antenna, and that'll be my backup COM solution. Other redundancy will be provided by the Skyview backup batteries and dual ADAHRS. Also seen here is a controller for the SDS CPI2 ignition, which will also be equipped with its own backup battery.  more


Jan Wallpaper Calendar

...Ed Hicks pic


Status Report ...jcarne 7A

It's been cold in the garage lately but no excuse not to get out there!

Decided to finish up the FlyLEDs kit. Soldering these things together is probably the funnest part of the build to date. Very well thought out kits and I highly recommend.

The classic inside view. Those heat sinks mean business!


300mph Groundspeed ...sailvi767


Leaking Fuel Tank Rivet ...f14av8r

Okay, so I've tried all the tricks to get this rivet to quit leaking. No amount of pressurized cattle syringe injection of any type of sealant has worked. They slowed the leak quite a bit but have not stopped it completely. So, I'm ready to take the plunge, drill this sucker out and replace it with a new, sealant coated rivet so I can get the leak stopped and the paint back in order!

The plans call for a AN470AD4-4 rivet. Obviously, I'll need a blind countersunk rivet for the replacement. To save me having to learn all about Cherry Max rivets again, would one of you rivet wizards tell me what I should use here please?