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Thu, Dec 29, 2011.  1207z

Jon Thocker RV-8 Cockpit Upgrade

After doing a Skyview + Dynon D6 install with the same radio stack (430/100EX) in a friend's RV8 and then Greg Reese's G3X install with a 430/100EX. I decided that what I really wanted was, a larger moving map, and dedicated course, hdg, and altitude select knobs for IFR. The legacy Dynon stuff fit the bill better for me, since I already had the D180 and AP74.

Rebuilding my RV-6 ...Brisbane, Australia

Around 18 months ago I bought a damaged RV6 following an engine failure on takeoff due to possible carb icing.

I had been looking for something to keep me busy for a while and stumbled over an add on an aircraft sales website, after a few conversation with a mate we decided to fly down in his Lancair to check it out, initial inspections things didn't look too bad, damaged upper and LWR cowling, firewall crushed, canopy roll over frame bent, canopy smashed, empennage destroyed, prop destroyed and minor damage to the fuselage and LH wing, it all looked fixable so I bought it.

I have been working away on it every spare minute, I've been slowly working threw the damage and making changes to the airframe, with over 20 years experience working on B767 and B747 and more recently A330 aircraft has given me the practical knowledge to make judgment calls on repairs and mods. A lot of the time it's just a simple change of part.

For me it's a great way to waste hour after hour in the shed slowly putting her back together. She is starting to take shape again, still loads more to do so I thought I'd share what I have done so far with you guys. http://rv-6rebuild.blogspot.com/

I'd like to thank the dedicated builders out there who have published detailed photo's of their builds, for me it has been a great way to find new ideas on practical and innovative things I could do with my aircraft.

Nick Purcell
Licensed on B767 Eng/Airframe
Rebuilding damaged RV6
Basically a major overhaul of everything.
So much Fun.

VAF Family
Vern Hendershotts RV-12 FOR SALE

As many have read on this forum Vern passed away in his sleep last week. The RV-12 he was building is about 85% complete with the only missing part is the new avionics which we are all waiting for. The aircraft is being sold for the family by myself and we are asking 55K for the airplane as is here in Spruce Creek Fly Inn. You can contact me directly at 516 909 4209 or by e-mail russtwa@gmail.com I will be able to supply pictures thru e-mail if you like.

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Cockpit evolution

Hi all, Hope everyone had a good Christmas. Thought I'd post a couple pictures of my cockpit... er... the evolution on the cockpit. The cockpit was pretty much done then I decided I wanted an arm rest. This is what I came up with. Super simple and cheap. You'll see I also moved the elevator trim knob to just under the armrest. The reason I moved it was because if I was in the seat with shoulder harnesses on, I really could not reach the knob without loosing the shoulder straps. Now, the only thing in the cockpit I can't reach without loosening the straps is the fuel tank selector. The armrest is perfect as it places my hand right at the throttle. Very comfy. Reaching the trim knob, (and the aileron trim), is just a matter of coming at it from the passenger side of the armrest. Both are easily reached without loosening any shoulder straps.  More...

Walt's 'Splat Mod'

Alton's carbon plenum

Martha Lunken's Latest...

Totally Off Topic

Here's your sign...

Fri, Dec 30, 2011.  1200z
  We would like to wish everyone a happy, safe and RV-filled 2012!  Thanks for spending so much time at work goofing off on this site.
             ------  Doug, Susie, Audrey and Tate.

January 2012 Calendar Wallpaper Online

RV-1 Work Day #4.1 (yesterday).  Wheeled out in the sunshine for a bit. 
K. Heberling photo.

download your wallpaper

RV-1 Work Day #4 (day before yesterday)

Work Day #4 began as an impromptu gathering to complete a few small tasks, but it quickly blossomed into a full fledged work day with 10 volunteers in the shop! Many familiar and a few new faces tackled a variety of tasks... a Service Bulletin issued for a Stitts Playboy horizontal stabilizer was completed, flying wires were tuned, canopy hardware installed and functioning smoothly, belly pan completed except for final fit and attachment, major progress on engine baffles, measurements for fuel lines completed, and a small parts order was placed. We were blessed with beautiful weather and it was a VERY productive day!  more

Generator Not Charging (RV-12)

Ground aborted today because the generator would not charge.

After start I noted that the amps were negative (-5) and battery voltage was below 12 volts. I have experienced the problem before but always during run-up the amps would go positive and battery would indicate 12 1/2 volts or so and generator would work properly during remainder of flight. Not so today. Ran power up to max and generator would still not charge. Returned to ramp, decowled, and checked all connections to the regulator and battery. Nothing found loose. Any other ideas?

  Some Replies:

Got an extra $170.55 plus shipping to allow you to see positive charging numbers on your Dynon EMS? If you have checked all your connections and they are secure you are likely to find that the Ducati 'voltage regulator/rectifier' has crapped out. Actually it is better that the voltage regulator/rectifier is bad than a bad stator (located well under the carbs and ignition), but it is still painful to the wallet. California Power Systems and Lockwood are your best source for the part. There is talk out there of people using a John Deere garden tractor (rated up to 30 amps) regulator/rectifier for about $100. less; but I'm sure a Rotax tech would frown.

The diodes fry inside the Ducati regulator and they are sealed (potted) units so they go in the trash can. The Ducati units will go anywhere from 0 to infinite hours before you fry one; but many people have a problem in the first 500 hours of engine time.(Yup...me too) Send me a private message for more information

Turn on the master switch and measure the voltage from ground to terminal C of the voltage regulator (where the small yellow wire connects). That voltage should be the same as the battery voltage. If not, there is a wiring problem.
If the voltage on terminal C is equal to the battery voltage, then I suspect the voltage regulator is bad. If you have not done so already, consider adding cooling to the new regulator. Van's sells a cooling kit as part of the lighting kit. Heat is the regulator's enemy.
System voltage with the engine running at cruise RPM should be close to 14 volts

As usual there is a lot of good advice above.

To test the regulator;

1) Check the Stator coils. With power off, remove the regulator plug and measure the resistance between the two heavy yellow wires in the braided jacket, (“G” terminal on the regulator) with an Ohm meter. This should be about ½ an ohm and NO reference to ground.
2) Check the regulator enable input. Turn the Master ON ( Mag A & B OFF) and measure the voltage from ground to the thin Yellow wire (“C” terminal). This should read battery voltage (DC volts)
3) Check battery wire continuity. With the Master still ON, one at a time, measure from ground to each white wire (“B” and “R” terminals). Both should read battery voltage. Turn the Master OFF and Reconnect the regulator.
4) Check the regulator ground. This step requires EXTREME CAUTION, if you are not up to the task don't attempt it. The negative output from the regulator is connected to the airframe through the regulator mounting bolts and nutplates on the firewall shelf. This connection must be able to carry the full 20 amp output of the regulator. Because resistance of this connection may vary with load an ohm meter should not be used. The best way to test the ground connection is with a volt meter while the regulator is under load. Start the engine and turn all electrical devices on. Using extreme caution, set your meter on DC millivolts and measure from ground to the aluminum case of the regulator. This voltage should be under 100mv.

Measure all voltages using a known good ground. If you pass these four tests you likely have a faulty regulator.

If you have an outside tie down, water can pool on the firewall shelf. Over time, the regulator ground connection may degrade. Installing a wire (#12) from one of the regulator mounting bolts to the existing ground lug connection on the oil tank holder/battery box may help.

Installing a higher output (non Rotax) regulator may shift the next failure to another component, maybe the alternator $tator coil$

That is excellent trouble shooting advice.
A regulator that is securely bolted to the firewall shelf will also conduct heat to the firewall shelf. A small amount of heat conducting grease, available at computer stores, will also help to conduct heat away from the regulator. If heat conducting grease is used, make sure that there is still a good ground connection

The troubleshooting tips with a meter are correct; be cautious though...most people do a horrible job with a meter and often make things worse...lol. I think you'll find the AC output of the stator is 45VAC...but don't quote me on that number. Heat is the culprit on the regulator design; it would be a relatively cheap fix to use heavier duty components to fix the design...I guess Rotax just recognizes that we love to use lots of watts in our recreation...so the design sticks and an alternate power source is available as an option. There isn't enough space under the cowling to install the optional alternator on the RV-12 without some relatively complicated fiberglass work...and we already know how much we like working with cloth and resin!

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Mandatory Service Bulletin (Dec 20th)

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
● From my buddy Jay Pratt ...hangar space in North Fort Worth.

Have you sent in your 2011 honor system $25 donation?

...because if you have, you're in the running to win a Garmin aera 560 worth $1,800.  There are (2) days left to donate, and thanks again to those that help keep this site afloat. dr


Totally Off Topic

Reversing the email spiral ...I really liked 'NNTR' and 'EOM' (#8).  From an article I stumbled upon.

Wed, Dec 28, 2011.  1223z

First Flight ...12.1.11 Ronald Parker (S. Carolina)

Rudi's RV-10 Panel

Merry XMAS everyone, and Merry XMAS to me too! It was a UBER RV week :twisted: (as Jan would say!) I finished the Panel on the 24th just before Xmas, so nice present to me

This entire panel is all home grown in my garage, fully redundant, full backup, everything trip switch protected, duel busses, standby batteries, the works, state of the EXPERIMENTAL art.  More / multiple photos...

from the RV-10 forum

In The Shop....
RV-9 IO-320 Fuel Injection issues

I am about to seal up my first tank so am thinking about the options available to me and the ones I should be thinking about before getting too far along.

Of coarse as a new builder I have many questions Landing/taxi lights, wing tip antennae and fuel tank return line. The most important right now is the fuel tank return line since I am about to close the tank. I am using the capacitance sender.
If I use the IO-320 will I need to use a return line?

It seems there are many different FI systems depending on where you buy the engine. Vans doesn't even show which system is supplied with their engine.

I would imagine I would also need the high pressure electric pump but I assume the electric is only a back-up and the engine drives the normal pump. Giving the ability to run even without power.

What about an air box. Vans shows an air box for a couple of different throttle bodies even though they show these as 0-320 engines I assume they mean IO when they say it fits a Ellison throttle body.

Anything else I should be thinking about during the wing construction.
1. Return line.
2. Antennae
3. Lighting
4. Pitot tube or AOA

Anything else I should be thinking about if I choose FI?
1. Return line.
2. Air box
3. Fuel pump and filter

Thanks in advance for your input

  Some Replies:

If you go with AFP FI system you will need return line. If you go with a bendix FI system (precision silverhawk) no need for return line and life is good. Some that go AFP just route return line into fuel vent line so it dumps the minimal fuel overboard. Your call.

I went with the precision silverhawk FI, no return line and 108 hrs later...love life. :-) Someone on here once said keep it simple and get it flying...then worry about upgrades and additions. Worked for me. Get her flying

I am planning to use a horizontal injection IO-320 in my RV-9A. I have ordered the finish kit with an RV-7 IO-360 cowl (no carb air scoop on the bottom), Van's "snorkel" air cleaner plenum, an air filter which mounts to the left hand engine cooling air vent. Using bendix (Precision silver hawk) style injection so no tank return line

(Walt A&P) Put a fitting in the tank now for a return line and cap it, then it's there if you need it. I prefer the AFP over the Bendix, but that's just me



Rudi's RV-10 Moves To The Airport
...multiple photos.

from the RV-10 forum

Why Precision Matters
http://www.ifma-austin.org/facs/ZeroZero.htm ...you'll want to read this.

Zero/Zero by Charles Svoboda
It happened sometime in 1965, in Germany. I was a copilot, so I knew, everything there was to know about flying, and I was frustrated by pilots like my aircraft commander. He was one of those by-the-numbers types, no class, no imagination, no “feel” for flying.

You have to be able to feel an airplane. So what if your altitude is a little off, or if the glideslope indicator is off a hair? If it feels okay then it is okay. That’s what I believed. Every time he let me make an approach, even in VFR conditions, he demanded perfection. Not the slightest deviation was permitted. “If you can’t do it when there is no pressure, you surely can’t do it when the pucker factor increases,” he would say. When he shot an approach, it was as if all the instruments were frozen – perfection, but no class.  Read More > >

Veterans Airlift Command ....Smokey Ray tells you about it.

As a Veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom I have had mixed emotions over recent events leading to the return of US troops. Having spent over 20 years of my life flying a very cool airplane most people only dream of in very austere circumstances, many of which took place over Iraq I still feel blessed. Even after the loss of life I witnessed, the damage I helped inflict, and hurt of those around me, I am still thankful. Why?  Read more > >

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
● Welcome http://DuckworksAV.com ...their ad lives in the 'Previous Day's News' section

Tue, Dec 27, 2011.  1204z
First flight ZK-BRV

Just to let all know another RV6 Kit number 250-55 has successfully taken to the air for a short 15 minute flight (almost a 17 year build).  Aircraft performed flawlessly
My thanks to all those who don’t know they helped on this forum.

Bruce Black
New Zealand
RV6 Kit No 25055

Dan Benua RV-3

For reference, I have an IO-320, Catto fixed pitch prop, AFS 5500EFIS, 2-axis AFS/TruTrak autopilot, Odyssey PC680 battery just forward of the spar, day/night VFR capability, and a sheep-skin on comfor-foamseat, but otherwise simple interior. As you can see in the photos from the weigh-in, the paint is complete.

Made for a nice X-mas.
- Dan Benua

Construction of my RV-7 MEMPHIS. photographs in 1611 i 6.30 minutes

...Alfonso Hernandez (Cambrils, Spain)

Song used in video copyrighted in a way that won't allow me to embed it.  Clicking on the image
will take you to YouTube to view it.  dr

Impromptu RV-1 Work Day - Wed, 28 Dec 2011

On The Lake Without Floats ....Mike Toews

Thought you might find this of interest. Ever since my airplane (RV-4, C-GFEW) made its first flight in 1999, I've wanted to take my airplane out to the cottage and land on the water. I love float planes and have my rating but just can't bring myself to put an RV-4 on floats. ...for one thing, aerobatics would be out the window - can't have that!

...as circumstances would have it, we had no obligations on Christmas morning and it was a beautiful day. ...and it had been cold here and without any significant amount of snow.

December 25th, 2011..

Merry Christmas

Safety gear everybody should have! ...a good discussion.

● 0630 at Corner Bakery for oatmeal.  Whole place to myself.  VAF On...

(send in your Work Shmork VAF pic)

Mon, Dec 26, 2011.  1212z

Heading home after a long mission...

Hope you had a nice Christmas with family and friends.

Mothership Closed Today

In The Shop....
RV-10 Door Pin Stuff ...pictures/discussion.  From the RV-10 forum.

Flight Testing
Plan, Train, Fly – Rational Flight Testing  ...Paul Dye

I have received quite a few requests from VAF members to share the first flight plan that we built for the RV-3 that we put into Phase 1 a couple of weeks ago. I have no problem sharing it, so long as people understand that it is a very specific plan, written for a very specific airplane, at a specific location, etc, etc. It’s usefulness to others is not in content, but in form – it could be useful as a guideline for those building planes for their own first flights (regardless of whether or not the builder is going to be the test pilot or not). If you look at it as an EXAMPLE, and not a bible, it might help you build your own plan.

As I started writing a few notes to go along with it, I realized that there are more than a few things that can be said about the way in which I conduct flight testing. The organization that I have been a part of for over thirty years has a simple motto…”Plan, Train, Fly!” That is what we do – we plan missions, we train for missions, and we fly those missions. The last part should be easy if you spend your time on the first two. I am currently writing a series of articles on the topic, but I would like to share a few of the key points here for those who are interested. Don’t worry folks – I am not a policeman, I am not going to try and “make” everyone go out and use this system – in fact, I will tell you right now that there are many ways to do flight testing “right”. These examples are not, in fact, for the experienced among us, but for those who are still looking for a model on which to learn about, and build, their own upcoming test program.   Read more > >

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Prop Controls Mod
...Ron Schreck RV-8

Here's the setup that I prefer. Since I do lots of formation and acro the quadrant mounted throttle with a wrist rest makes big or small throttle adjustments easily. The vernier controls on prop and mixture are out of the way of the throttle and unlikely to be used while in formation or doing acro yet they are great for fine tuning the prop and setting mixture LOP. FWIW, this is the setup you will likely see on many dedicated aerobatic mounts like the MX-2 and Edge-540.

This is MY preferred setup. If you like YOUR vernier throttle, well that's OK too.

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
This Can't Be Good

Thanks for all the help guys. So I went to the hangar to pull off the MTH and inspect it and the suspect Magnetic pickup sensor. I was in luck as my hangar neighbor, who is an electronics guru, was there so we tested the magnetic pickup sensor. Test 1) passed the Ohm test with 676ohms (good is 600-800), Test 2) Passed the voltage test when manually turned and Test 3) he broke out a "Scope" to measure the voltage wave (I am sure I dumbing this down). All three passed, so the magnetic pickup sensor is good.

When I inspected the MTH and pulled off the back cover to check the gap between the teeth and sensor per Rocket Bob's recommendation, this is what I found:  Read More > >

Doug Rozendaal Turnback Thoughts

I was leisurely digesting my Christmas Dinner, surfing VAF, and "what to my wondering eyes should appear......" Another Turnback thread.... OMG

Those who know me can imagine my indigestion...

Nothing seems to change.... Every few months I read about another SSCBD accident after a turn-back after take-off...

The AOPA did a terrible disservice to General Aviation with their articles this summer... I know for a fact that there was disagreement internally about the things they have published on the subject this summer...

I also realize this thread was started to gather data, but for what purpose.... If you believe you have the skills to consider a turnback when the unthinkable happens to you, then you have the skill set to collect your own data on your own airplane. If that is beyond your skill set, then a turnback from an EFATO should not be in your toolkit...

The most recent post that says pulling the mixture at altitude is going too far??? If pulling the mixture 4000 ft above a 4000 ft runway increases your heart rate even 1 bpm, then the turnback from an EFATO is not for you....

Long term readers of this forum know that I have never said it is impossible. What I have said, and continue to repeat, is this..

When it happens for real, there are so many variables that must be considered that make it impossible to have a cookbook go-no/go decision. That combined with the shot of adrenaline that comes with the emergency turns the brain to mush.... The statistics bear this out...

The default response to an EFATO needs to be, "lower the nose and pick a point ahead of the wings, into the wind, and land at the slowest possible airspeed." Airplanes that arrive at the earth, wings level, under control, at minimum airspeed, have survivors onboard...

There is an attorney in Des Moines IA, Tom Drew, who coined a phrase that I call "Drew's Law" Tom says that "80% of the pilots believe they are in the top 20%..."

To that I add a corollary, "The reality is that half of us are below average." (the median actually for the statisticians, but that's a detail)

Pulling off a turnback from an EFATO is a maneuver that requires the skills found a group much smaller than the top 20%.

Trying would be fine if failure did not result in almost certain death for all aboard....

Everyone have a wonderful Christmas, and I will go find a roll of Tums....

Doug Rozendaal

Totally Off Topic

DIY Epic Fail...

Fri, Dec 23, 2011.  1220z
  Friday!  We got an early Christmas present last night - found out our daughter Audrey scored over 2,100 on the S.A.T. (~ top 3%).  I just had to brag on her, and the big brain and study ethic she got from her mother.  Scholarship committees....heads up!
  Susie, Audrey, Tate and I would like to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas.  Thank you for letting us be a small part of your online routine.  dr

Merry Christmas from VAF.

Gerard van Honthorst Adoration of the Shepherds

First Flight: Jerry Fischer RV-7

My RV7, Miss Sandy, Defied gravity for the first time on December 2, 2011 at KLZU with Dave Henderson at the controls. He said she flew hands off and leaped into the sky. After 4 and a half years with some more cosmetic finishing to go, it was satisfying to finally see it fly.

The craft is a tip up, tail wheel RV7 started the week of Sun N Fun in 2007.

Engine is an experimental O-360 with Lycoming cylinders, case, and carbureted fuel delivery.

The panel is all Van's gauges with electric T & B, Gyro/horizon, and DG.

Avionics are a Bendix King KT-79 transponder with transcal encoder, Michels TKM MX-170C Nav/Com, and an AVMap Geopilot GPS.
Empty weight is 987 pounds.

Indicated A/S without wheel pants @ 3000 ft. MSL was 165 Kts.

Not too shabby for an old man, who had lots of help and support from his great wife, Miss Sandy, Ron Miller the rivet bucker, Larry Bishop the Tech Counselor, VAF for the online resource, and all the other folks who encouraged me to finish the plane and see her fly.

First video attempt ...Paul Danclovic

A friend who works for a commercial video company wanted to go for a plane ride and experiment with a couple of Drift cameras.

This is about six trips around the pattern we edited down to a few minutes. No cool aerobatics or formation but it may provide a bit of motivation for those still building.


Flight Planning
NX13PL - First (and second) Flight Plan ...Paul Dye

The following notes were prepared for a specific test of a specific aircraft at a specific location. It may be referred to as an example for scope and content, but should not be considered as a complete and ready plan to be used for any other aircraft. It is provided as a reference for those preparing for their own first flights.

Paul F. Dye
EAA Technical Counselor/Flight Advisor
December 2011

(6) page PDF file added to articles section

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
GTN Trainer App: Explore the GTN 750 right on your iPad 2!

 There’s something new in the iTunes App store for all of you pilots out there. This week, Garmin released a new app, the GTN 750 Trainer for the iPad 2. This app simulates the behavior of the GTN 750 system interface and allows you to interact with it like you would with the device in the cockpit. Whether you already fly a GTN-equipped aircraft and looking for some more practice, or you’re considering purchasing the avionics and want take it for a test drive, this is the perfect way to become more familiar or comfortable with the GTN 750. (continue)

● Avery Xmas Sale.

Totally Off Topic

If you were a kid in the mid-70s, your Christmas might have included
one of these...

Thu, Dec 22, 2011.  1219z
  We're getting down to the wire here in the Christmas Season, not a lot of work getting done at the office and lots of web surfing - serious goof off mode.  Yesterday there was a great big blue capital 'H' over the top of our field (partial screen capture at right), so a few of us flew over to nearby Hicks airfield and had a burger for lunch.  Clouds come back today, and the wind shifts around to the north again, but there for a day it was really nice.  Good to see my friends Jay, Rich and Mike again.
  Felt good to get off the surface.  dr

First flight: Sweden RV-4

First Flights on the Mother Ship

Bob Harvey RV-10 (stinson220 in the forums)

This is a picture of my finished RV-10, which took 3 years and 3 months to build. First flight was November 27, 2010, and we now have approx. 200 hours on it. After I completed the first 40 hours, I talked my wife into learning how to fly. She did all of her flight training in it, and passed her test in August. Now we have to flip a coin to see who will fly left-seat

Low airspeed

I could use a little help on this one. My air speed has been reading low since first flight. I am indicating a stall of 35 knots, the airspeed is consistently off thru the whole speed range. Rv-7 equipped with Dynon D-180, Dyon pitot, safe air static.

Pitot static tested ok, air damns in front of static no effect, static vented to cabin slight change, new static and pitot lines no effect, drilled out safe air ports and installed rivet (like vans ports) no effect, added washer under static port (rivet) no effect, different pitot tube no effect.

Have not compared to another airspeed indicator as I only have one. Seems to me that the D-180 is off, but Dynon tells me that since it passed the pitot static test that it was probably ok.

If anyone has any suggestions for me I would appreciate it.

  Some Replies:

I would go back and check your entire pitot system again.

Mine was reading low, and like you, my stall was at 35 MPH. I replaced the entire pitot and AoA lines, from the D100 back to the Dynon pitot tube. Found a pretty good leak at the connection to the pitot tube. Problem solved

set your altimeter to field elevation and then do a low pass (100) over the runway and note the altimeter setting. You will have to eyeball the 100 feet but if the altimeter is reading something much different then the 100 feet plus field elevation then you have a static error

Already replaced the lines and checked the static system for leaks? My next guess would be the instrument. Fortunately for you, Dynon has (I think) the ability to calibrate your airspeed and altimeter

airpeed calibration is not part of the static system test, however the Barfield test box is capable of airpeed testing. my skyview and D6 were spot on.

you might consider using a homemade water manometer to check your airpeed and plumbing. search for other threads on airspeed, you'll find more info

What you're describing might be a static source pressure error. There's some other good info on this phenomenon (provided by Kevin Horton) in the flight test section. You'll still need manometer data, but if that shows the Dynon display to be accurate, then you'll need some flight test data. It generally takes some effort to get indicated airspeed "dialed in."

Is your static source in the same location and using the same pop rivet head as Van supplies? Both location and shape have a strong effect on indicated airspeed. Low indicated speed implies that you may be getting pressurized air in your static source. Deploying flaps can change your static pressures at the low end if you use differing static source locations and shapes

Totally Off Topic

Wed, Dec 21, 2011.  1200z

Shop Status: Sean Blair RV-7 ...and a novel wing hanging method.

Just finished the rear fuselage this weekend. Wings in the background just need to bottom skins riveted. Empennage is in the basement. BTW...the 4" wide straps in the background are suspended from metal channels from Lowe's so I can hang the wings and get some floor space back when ready. Got the 10' straps made with D rings for $15.00 each!

● Mother Ship Holiday Schedule

In The Shop....
Pete Bernard
...8 underway

VAF Family
Rest in Peace: Vern Hendershott Jr.

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
● Last Minute Xmas Gifts

New Product Announcement JD Air Parts

Totally Off Topic
How many workers does it take to stop a spinning concrete buffer?

Tue, Dec 20, 2011.  1210z

Year end thanks and Merry Christmas! ...Will Carlton

N502CF is an airplane!

This is late coming, but on November 17th N502CF took off for the first time. It was Awesome! everything went great with only one issue being a heavy left wing. I had so much fun building over the last 4 years and it's really nice having it finished. Well...Almost finished. Now I can focus more on my "real" job, which interesting enough is more enjoyable now too. Here's some pics to check out.

In The Shop....
A Tale of 2 Panels
...Jon Thocker

I, along with Scott Hersha recently completed an upgrade of our friend and fellow River Rat Greg Reese's instrument panel in his RV8. Greg brought his plane to our hangar Nov. 1 and left 6 weeks later with this!  (continue)

Turning Around…..and Trying Another Way ...Paul Dye

We had an interesting trip out to the Southern California area from our Houston home on Friday. Te purpose of the trip is to spend the holiday season visiting SOCAL family from our secret mountain base (the cabin at Big Bear Lake). Fortunately, our schedule was flexible at both ends, so we didn’t bother with the usual “backup” tickets on SWA, figuring that in any given three-day window, we could make the trip work. Classic obstacles for a winter trip are cold temperatures and precipitation, which can easily equate to icing. The fact that IFR altitudes across New Mexico and Arizona are routinely up above the freezing level make it pretty much off my risk table to fly IFR in the clouds. That means reasonable VMC conditions, and potentially a two-day trip if you have to get up close to a weather system, and then set down for a day to let it pass over you.

Our plan was to leave on Saturday at the earliest, and we’d get really nervous about fitting things in if we didn’t get out of Texas by Tuesday. Well, as things would have it, Saturday looked pretty reasonable, Sunday and Monday were predicted to be horrendous across the Lone Star State, and Tuesday was “iffy” on the coast. So we packed up the airplane, and told the dogs to watch the homestead for Saturday. We had awoken to low overcast (IFR) conditions), so I filed IFR to get us out to Pecos – but just about the time I hit the “file” button on Weathermeister, the sun came out and the clouds evaporated to a 10,000’ overcast. WM predicted the best winds (tailwinds westbound!) down low, so we just blasted off VFR and enjoyed a nice cruise to West Texas and the friendly folks (free burritos!) at Pecos. From there, we saw lower ceilings out to Demning in the reports, but broken skies beyond to clear in Casa Grande, so on top we went, and picked up even better tailwinds as we moved westward. (continue)

Post-Chase Lessons Learned ...David Paule

First, I want to thank the people who contributed to this discussion. I learned a lot that I was able to apply today.

I flew chase today for the first flight of a homebuilt. We flew from a private airpark. Here's what I learned, and my apologies for the length.

1. It's a maximum workload job. It takes 100% of your effort and don't kid yourself about that. If the pilot skills are not up to the task, don't do it. Having a co-pilot available to check traffic and and talk about things is a very good plan. The co-pilot should not be a photographer or member of the family of the test pilot. Instead you want a capable, disinterested and competent pilot. My neighbor, Dallice Tylee, did well.

2. For communications between the test aircraft and the chase aircraft, the names "Test" and "Chase" are better than the N numbers.

3. Approaching the pattern near the end of the flight, in this case an uncontrolled field, it's advisable for the chase plane to request that other aircraft remain clear of the pattern until the test aircraft is clear of the runway. I didn't do that, and the test aircraft had to held while a poorly organized flight of three tried to get in before us. My bad.

4. It's extremely difficult to maintain visual contact with a small unpainted metal aircraft against ground clutter, especially when there's some snow. The test aircraft didn't have strobes, and they would have helped. Chase can sometimes help by providing some relative movement compared to the test aircraft, by descending or climbing relative to them - keeping clear at all times.  (continue)

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
RV-8 on Wheel/Skis

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


New RV-7-9 carbon fiber panels

I have had a number of request for a carbon fiber panel like the RV-10 panels we make. We are in the final design of the Symmetrical slider panel for the RV-7 and 9. Looking for a little feed back. We still have a few items to sort out but this is very close to the final design. We will also have a option for the throttle quadrant. This panel has 2 AFS 5600 screens in it which shows the amount of real estate in the panel.

We are also working on a A symmetrical panel which will have 2 screens in front of the left seat pilot. These panels will be an easy install in new or upgrading flying aircraft.

Totally Off Topic

A 360* Video You Can Pan Around In While It's Playing

I just couldn't help but think that for $79 somebody is going to put that on the top of their RV instrument panel during a flight.  Snaps on to your iPhone.  The video quality might totally stink, but it's a cool idea!

Go to the link, run the video, and 'grab' it while moving your mouse to pan around.


more here

Donator List Updated...down 14% from last year.

I spent some time this weekend revamping the donation section.

As of the 17th, donations are 86% of last year's total.  However, VAF Forum registrations have increased in 2011 by 1,470.  There are 13 days left in 2011. Please help keep VAF online with your yearly honor system donation.

Mon, Dec 19, 2011.  1153z

RV12 North Texas Lunch Fly in!

Today in north Texas the weather was beautiful so a few RV12s got together for lunch at Lancaster Airport cafe just south of Dallas.

RV-1 “Treasures” Recently Uncovered in Rochester, WA

RV-1 Wing Drawings dated March 16, 1970, and construction photos dated July, 1972, were uncovered in an old workshop at the home of the now deceased, Mr. Rudy Flaig (EAA 1204). Mr. Jeff Jernigan recently purchased the home from Mr. Flaig’s family, and while Mr. Jernigan was cleaning out an old workshop on the property he uncovered several aviation treasures – an original set of RV-1 wing drawings and construction photos, a pristine set of Wag Aero CUBy plans, and a set of JD Airplanes Headwind plans.

Mr. Jernigan doesn’t have a background or interest in aviation, but when he found these items in Mr. Flaig’s old shed he immediately realized that he might well be holding aviation history in his hands. Mr. Jernigan then safely stored the items and began to search out the origin of these treasures in an attempt to find them a proper home. One of Mr. Jernigan’s calls was to Van’s Aircraft Company, who directed him to Friends of the RV-1. Asking for nothing in return and at his own expense, Mr. Jernigan forwarded these historical treasures to Friends of the RV-1 for safekeeping and subsequent gifting to the EAA Museum.

The RV-1 documents have been digitized for safekeeping and to provide the public a convenient method of viewing these historical documents. The Wag Aero drawings have been forwarded to the Cub Club in Hartford, WI, for placement in their library, and we’re still searching for a home for the Headwind drawings. Special thanks go out to Mr. Jeff Jernigan for his part in preserving this slice of aviation history! Details remain somewhat sketchy about the life of Mr. Rudy Flaig and his aviation activities and accomplishments, but we’re currently working with his family and other sources to develop a short biography to include with his RV-1 drawings and photos when they are presented to the EAA Museum.


VAF Family
● Starting the build.... Miles Bowen (Tehachapi, CA)

● Flipped!!!

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Tip- Stock Vans fuel valve handle mod (RV-10 Forum)

Here is an example of what a buddy did in his RV 10 to make the stock Vans unit more user friendly.

The little pointer end was ground off, leaving just the longer handle part, and the valve was installed in a manner that put the handle forward.

Round plate with Left, Right, and Off positions marked on it finished off the installation.

Sorry for the photo quality, I grabbed a crop out of a larger photo, and lost some detail/clarity.

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
100LL Shelf Life ...a discussion

Totally Off Topic

Robin Marks sent me this...

Fri, Dec 16, 2011.  1219z

Radar on the phone showed bands of showers travelling southwest to northeast every thirty minutes or so passing over the field.  I took off right after one passed and turned east - couple drops and some light mist.  Flew around as a small rain shaft passed over the field, waited for it to move north, and came in a few minutes behind it.  Taxied into the hanger and took the picture below of the next band entering the area.  Prettier in person.

Logged .3hrs and the plane was clean when I landed on a slick-as-snot runway, could hardly tell when the wheels touched.  Awesome!  Couple minutes later I got a text from RV builder Wil Carlton, who lives a few miles east of the field.  "Was that you flying over my house?"  Yes.

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

Lovin' my RV.  dr

Between showers yesterday.

From the Mother Ship FB Page

RV-1 Project

- The RV-1 needs Wheel, Axles, Brakes, and Tires!
- RV-1 - Firewall Forward work begins... (Picasa)
- RV1 Workers Needed

In The Shop....
● Brandi RV-10 Status

From The RV-10 Forum

● From the Mother Ship

VAF Family
Wings are here

Before I became ill, I placed an order with Vans for the wing kit for my RV-4. This was last September. At that time, I had no idea that I was already so ill. The wing kit set me back $6500 plus delivery and Swiss taxes. When I was told and when it had sunk in that I was very ill, I thought about cancelling the order. That would have cost me $2000 as work had already commenced at Phlogiston on the wing spar. I decided that the motivation of having the wing kit would go a long way in helping me recover from this dreadful lurgy. This morning, I received a phone call announcing that the consignment is now in Zurich and will be delivered to the house (Tony Towers) tomorrow. I asked if the consignment could be dropped into the garage as it is made up of two crates, with a combined weight of 180Kg. there is no way I could lift or move that sort of weight in my present condition. Anyway, the driver will drop the crates straight into the garage. I am so looking forward to seeing the wing kit and I can already feel the motivation stirring 8°) .
Anthony Johnston
Brit working in Zurich, Switzerland.
1500 hour pilot.
RV-4 s/n 4572 Emp Kit.
RV-3B s/n 11460 Emp Kit

RV-X Factor- in the vertical ...Smokey Ray

Here is a short iphone video practicing vertical rolls and "stayin in the container" in honor of my good friend Jim Swick. Featured aircraft: RV-X.


What to check for on first engine start-

About ready to fire things up and am trying to get my first start checklist/test card compiled. From Ironflight's conversation with Mahlon at Mattituck, it sounds like ground runs on new engines don't hurt anything so long as CHT's stay below 300F, but I'll still try to be as efficient as possible.

Here's what I have so far, not in any particular order:

1st engine start--
1. Check for oil pressure immediately.
2. Check to see if my Dynon is reading/correctly interpreting RPMs off the p-leads.
3. Check low idle speed (Mike Seager highly recommended getting it down to 550-600 if possible for the RV-9 to prevent float.)
4. Check to see if Dynon sensors are picking up CHT and EGT temps.
5. Check for proper amps/volts with alternator on.
6. Check both left and right tanks for flow while engine is running. [Not sure about the necessity of this one since I'll be doing it in the fuel flow test before the first start. (?)]
7. On shut down check for mixture idle cutoff.After shutdown, check all oil/fuel fittings for leaks.
8. On shut down check for mixture idle cutoff.
2nd engine start--
1. All of above to confirm after any adjustments made as a result of first start issues.
2. Brake pad conditioning/slow speed taxi testing.
What else would you add and/or subtract?  Thanks. (chime in)

For Aging Eyes (iPhone users)
Mag Light app (free)

It turns on the flash LED on and magnifies the view.  Little buttons on the screen allow you to turn the light on/off and take a picture.  You can read TINY stuff (like the pin numbers on the back of a connector).  Bob Stack showed me this out at the airport yesterday around lunch.  Awesome!

IFR hesitations

I’m wondering about the best way to build my IFR confidence back. I’ve been IFR rated for six or seven years and used to fly a Bonanza and Cirrus (and C-182) – company owned and rented - fairly frequently for business trips. I’m a pretty decent IFR pilot, I think, in that I have the ability to fly on the gauges and shoot accurate approaches, etc.

About 4 years ago, I had a minor icing encounter while in the clouds in a Cirrus that kind of rattled me. The airplane struggled out of the cloud tops with a good bit of ice and would barely maintain altitude about 200 above the clouds.

Since then, I have just avoided any IFR operations – subconsciously, really. I tend to schedule flying trips and then cancel them if the weather’s anything but good VFR in the forecast. I’ve driven a lot of trips where I’ve kicked myself for chickening out of flying because the weather turned out to be perfectly flyable for SE IFR.

I lack confidence in my ability to accurately interpret weather forecasts and evaluate the realistic risk – be it T-storms in the summer or ice in the winter.

How do I get myself back to the point where I can feel good about my evaluation of the weather situation and make more “GO” decisions?

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
● Specials From Tina at Tina's Pilot Shop

● A Panel SteinAir Did Earlier This Year

Gentle Reminder to Read the Posting Rules Every Now and Then...yeah, yeah, I know....shut up Doug.

And as a thanks for doing that, here's some comedy.

Thu, Dec 15, 2011.  1157z

The Birthing of our RV8!



RV-12 Plans Revision ...posted 12/13.  (8) pages

source: http://www.vansaircraft.com/public/notices2.htm

In The Shop....
Bill Peyton RV-10 Panel Status

"Yesterday we powered up the panel for the first time after mounting in the airframe. We used the standard Aerosport panel. The inserts are fine texture powder coat. The flap switch and dimmer pots still need inserts which are waiting on labels."

Rough engine at 1500-1700 rpms

This is an injected Lycoming OF-320. Catto 3 blade fixed pitch. 10 hours.  The engine starts and idles nicely, however both on the ground and in the air when the throttle is advanced to 1500rpm the engine becomes rough and does not respond well to the throttle until 1800 rpms are reached and then the engine will play catch up and go to 2000 rpms.

While at 4500 ft and after about 35 minutes of flight I could get no rpm's above idle. I switched tanks from left to right with the boost pump on and after a little while, varying throttle settings, the rpm's came back. I had switched the tanks after 30 minutes from right to left about 5 minutes earlier. I think this was more coincidental rather than significant. When I did have rpm's I was also getting backfires. There was no holding a set rpm and surges of 1 to 300 rpm on any setting above 1200 rpm was the norm. There was alot of throttle movement with no reaction from the engine.

The engine never made full power and at best WOT at cruise was 2500 rpm.  I ran it up back at the hangar and the same dead zone at 1500 to 1700 rpm was evident but none of the other inflight symptoms.

I have changed the injectors, sealed induction leaks, cleaned fuel filters and have run out of idea's. Below is a graph of the MAP vs engine rpm's and there is a definate lack at the dead zone area. 1500-1700 rpm's.  I have a K&N filter which was recently cleaned and re oiled, perhaps too much oil?

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

Bird Strike ...Brian Carroll

Yesterday on my way to 3U9, I was putzing along at 800agl, 160mph enjoying the day. I was looking at something off my 9 o'clock, when I looked back forward I got a flashes of something small & black whizzing past. Whoa, that was close I almost hit a bird or two. A quick visual after landing at Three Forks didn't show anything.

Did a quick attitude adjustment flight(0.3hr) again today with no excitement other than snow. My post flight inspection, I see a red scuff on the top of the wing. Then I see a little pile of feathers and guts stuck to the HS. No damage that couldn't be wiped off with a damp towel. But I never saw or heard anything today, so think it happened on landing. Seems these little birds like to hang around the runway this time of year, well one less now.

Flight Testing
Using a Chase Plane

Why have one? As far as I can see it offers only these benefits:

1. It's a platform for someone to take photos.

2. If the test plane has an avionics failure the chase plane can make the radio calls.

3. The chase plane can look out for traffic.

Anything else?

The reason why I'm asking is that a friend is going to make the first flight of his plane soon, and has asked me to fly chase for him. We have flown formation together numerous times and have briefed on that and other appropriate aspects of the flight.

I will not go in close enough to identify potential leaks, so that possible task isn't going to happen.

But if anyone can give me some advice, something to help make the flight safer or let me relieve the test pilot's workload, I'd be grateful

  Some Replies:

These are some others.

- Coordination with tower or other airspace requiring communications.

- Clearing the area for the flight.

- Checking for any leaks (fuel, oil, etc) or smoke.

- Airspeed comparison.

- Coordination with ground/air facilities in case of emergencies.

- SAR coordinations.

- An important one; some one to hold your buddy to his/her plan. NOGOs

That being said. The chase should never be in the way of the aircraft conducting it's first flight. That test pilot has way too many things going on

Looking for leaks or smoke was the only real reason I wanted a chase plane on my first flight

.....If a person plans to stay in radio and visual (not to mention gliding) range of the airport, many of these reasons go away, and many first flights are conducted safely without them. if you aren't trained in the use of a chase, and can't practice with one, then you might very well be safer without one. For our test flights last weekend, we did mission-specific training to know what we were going to do. It paid off well for the plan we used.....

RV-3- First Impressions ...Paul Dye

I have had more than a few PM’s from folks asking about the flying qualities of our new RV-3B, and thought I might as well share what I have observed so far (with less than five hours on the clock). I have quite a few hours in most of the RV line, but had never flown a -3 before this (no time in the -4 either), these truly are “first impressions, and will probably mature with more experience. This aircraft is near the top end of the scale in weight for a -3, and carries an IO-320 with a Whirlwind 151 composite, constant speed, 3-bladed prop. Other configurations will, of course, vary. Impressions, in no particular order….

1. In the two-seat RV’s, you feel like you are in an airframe, and there is an engine attached. The -3 is small enough that (at least with the IO-320), you feel like you’re flying an engine, and there is an airframe there to control it.

2. Comparing it to the -8, it is very light on the controls. The -8 I have always considered solid and capable (much, much lighter than a SPAM can, but more solid than the lighter -6) – the -3 is light in a way that it takes no effort to point it where you want it.

3. Control movement is negligible at cruise speed – mild pressure will give just about any roll rate you would want.

4. Pitch and roll are harmonious. Rudder pressure is a bit higher at cruise speed. All control movements result in very crisp responses – rates start and stop almost instantaneously – there is little build up – you are level, then you’re in a sixty degree bank, just like that.

5. Power response in formation is exceptional – moving fore and aft is instantaneous, and it is easy to stop relative motion quickly(continue)

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
● New Landing Light.....press Release from ZtronLabs.com

● From Rich Meske at AircraftExtras.com

● Avery Xmas Sale.


RV in Sim

Totally Off Topic

Doug Volkmer sent me this...

Wed, Dec 14, 2011.  1555z SPECIAL

Wed, Dec 14, 2011.  1202z
Motivation- flying beats working ...Brian Carroll (Montana)

Winter is setting in, so nice days are not to be squandered. After coffee with the airport bums, I decided to head a few miles south and visit a friend. When I left Three Forks I followed the river home, here's a shot of open water downstream from my Dam work place. (continue)

Video of the Recent Monday Night Football KC Flight at night ...Phillip Lamb

ESPN sent me this DVD of KC Flight and our first NFL fly over at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Chiefs vs Chargers 10/31/2011. This was shot from above in a Partenavia P.68 they gave us some great reviews.  We have since done a 2nd night game for the Chiefs vs Steelers on 11/27/2011 and are on a stand by schedule for 12/24/2011.


CHT - Angle Valve vs Parallel Valve

From time to time someone will mention that the parallel valve cylinders are harder to keep cool than angle valve cylinders. It's one of those things which seem plausible. However, evidence would be nice too.

Jeff Schans at Lycoming was kind enough to supply cooling air charts for the 4-cyl engines of interest to RVers.

Tonight I plotted a 4 inch H2O baffle drop at 5000 ft pressure altitude and 60 OAT for all four engines. Below you see the lower right corner of each chart.

Note the parallel valve charts have two CHT curves, 75% @435F CHT and full power at 500F CHT. The angle valve engines have three CHT curves, 70% @ 400F and 435F (425F for the IO-390), and a full power curve. I point this out because it's easy to get confused....look close at the labels. I've marked the 435F curve on each.

Apples to apples, you can just barely keep the 320 under 435 CHT with 4" of water across the baffles.

4" isn't enough for the parallel valve 360; CHT is heading for the absolute limit.

On the same 4" an IO-360 angle valve is around 420 CHT. To be fair the curve is drawn for 70% power rather than 75%. Even at 75% the angle valve 360 would cool as well as the little 320 on the same mass flow.

The 390 chart is plotted for 425F CHT rather than 435F. It appears they just shifted the curves upward a bit. You can even cool a 390 on the same mass flow as a 320.

So, parallel valve owners, the CHT problem is not entirely your imagination. Running "only" a 320 does not make the task easier. O-360 owners (and by extension O-540 owners) get no slack at all. They must have good baffles, good seals, and good upper cowl pressures or accept the consequences.  (more/enlarge chart)

On the Mother Ship

One wing skinned the other one to go ...Jack and Anita

Glad to see so much activity on the site. We have been a little tied up with the death of my father in law and the services were this past weekend. But on to the aircraft...Were rocking.... 11 months into the project. all the tail feathers done. One wing skinned totally as of today and will knock the other one out in the next week.

I am so pleased with the way the seams fit. I left the wing in the wing jig and put the bottom skin on there as I could not get a table in to put the wing on. Using a small step stool worked. The skins fit great.

Be ordering the Fuselage shortly... and with the encouragement of this group and a few Ben Franklins floating around we'll get going on it... I can not wait to get this in the air...

I'll try to attach a picture.  I also have the flaps done, Alierons built , Roll servo installed and the heated pitot plumbed. The tank balloons stayed inflated for 2 weeks so I guess were good to go.

About Cotter Pins ...Walt Shipley post

Those words "Cotter Pins" remind me of an incident I had with my RV8A a few years ago.

I had flown my 8A up to Minnesota to look at an RV8 kit for sale, and was on my way back home in East Tennessee. Enroute I had a fuel stop in Paducah, KY, and as I lined up on the runway and sofly touched down, I mentally congratulated myself for a "greaser."

As I rolled out, I touched left rudder to correct a slight drift to the right of centerline, and, to my surprise, NOTHING happened! Again I pushed left rudder, and again nothing happened as I drifted towards the right edge of the runway.

Seeing that I was going to depart the runway, I pulled idle cutoff and rolled into some high grass near the end of the runway. After the plane stopped and my pulse again came back close to normal, it suddenly dawned on me what had happened - a cotter pin that I failed to bend over had fallen out, leaving me without control of the left rudder and brake.

During construction of the brake/rudder pedal assembly, I just stuck the cotter pins in place because they would be going in and coming out numerous times before the assembly was finished. When I was finished with
the assembly, I bent all the cotters down - except one. And that one cotter
pin took around two hundred hours to finally slide out.

I ended up buying the RV8 kit but I was extremely careful to ensure I properly secured the cotter pins

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
How to wash the plane without (a) water (source)

Long story short due to a growing family the wife said we need a new house so we got another house and it doesn’t have a 50'X22' garage perfect for building a RV8 like the last one, so I rented a hanger to finish the project. The problem is the hanger is nowhere near air tight and is in the middle of the Nevada desert and when the wind blows everything gets covered in dust. How do I wash the plane without water? The avionics are in and in the middle of being wired, the canopy is cut and Sika flex, but the wind screen is not on and the motor is hung. Can I use Windex and paper towels? I have tried the air compressor which gets most of it off and then following up with a feather duster but this doesn’t get all of it.

The plan is to get the dust off of it and keep it covered with old bed sheets when not working on it. I don’t want to use something to clean it that will leave a residue when it’s time to paint it.

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
● Avery Xmas Sale.

Totally Off Topic

From the Argyle Police Blotter (near 52F)

"Police investigated a theft report at Argyle High School where someone had stolen trash can lids."

Tue, Dec 13, 2011.  1220z
N59LG defeats gravity itself!

Semi local airforce/airline/RV pilot Scott Jordan flew down to Pottstown in his 8 to perform the first flight in my 3 yesterday. I was able to ride in the back of Scott Powers' RV-8 as he flew chase during the entire flight. The weather was near perfect with temps in the mid 40's, no wind, no clouds and unlimited vis. Scott and I took off ahead of the 3 and lined up on a high downwind so we could get a good view of the takeoff. In about half a second the 3 was up and steadily climbing to 3k. After a few laps and with all engine sensor points in the green we decided to pull in close to check out the control surfaces. Everything looked great and in trail. Next were a series of stalls and a quick hi speed run. The only issues were a slightly heavy right wing (about 5 deg/second) and the flaps would not lock in the full down position. Not too bad if you ask me! Again big thanks to the Scott Jordan, Scott Powers, my Dad and the crew at EAA 1250 as well as my friends and family who came out to witness the big event.

I'm off to Frisco in a few weeks so unfortunately I wont be able to fly it for a while. I just hope I can claw it out of my dads hands after he has flown off the 40 hours. (more pics and videos)

Landing at Marina di Campo, Elba, Italy ...Keith RV-12

Need a full wallet for this one. $120 for landing and overnight parking. For that you get to drive your own stakes into a patch of sandy earth. And $15.5 for a gallon of avgas. Welcome to the Eurozone


Landing at Gap/Tallard, French Alps...Keith RV-12

Gap is a major GA field in the Alps, with lots of parachuting, gliding, flexwing and fixed wing flying going on simultaneously. Circuit is interesting. I'm following another plane, so having to do a larger circuit than I would otherwise do in the restricted space available.


RV12 to the Cairngorms...Keith RV-12

Winter is coming to Scotland. We have a maritime climate, so plenty of variety, but usually no extremes. However...

Thursday brought wind, rain, hail, snow. The bridge conveying traffic north from Edinburgh over the Forth Estuary was closed - winds gusting to 86 mph. An empty jet at Edinburgh airport was tipped onto its wingtip. It also brought the winds to the Cairngorm ski area - 165 mph recorded. Not a record, but exceptional for here.

Today was different, so I pulled out the RV12 to take a look at the Cairngorms. Not high by most people's standards (4000 ft) but can be pretty, especially in the winter.

Short Video- Formation take off


Flying Magazine Article Features RV-9A

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

I don't need no stinkin' truck!

I got most of a mostly complete empennage and wing parts for my (hopefully) sold HRII project out to the hangar using only my trusty old '97 Saturn (370K miles) to make room for my -7 project. I could close the trunk on the HRII spars, but it was close enough that I wouldn't have been able to do it on full-length RV-4 spars.  (more)

Mon, Dec 12, 2011.  1210z
  Good morning!  My alma mater got its first Heisman trophy this past weekend.  It's been a good year for Baylor, beating OU, UT and TCU in the same season.  Now the Heisman....which they are spelling 'HeIIIsman' down in my hometown <g>.
  Go Bears and congratulations RGIII.  Watch the video link below filmed in the student union.  It'll make you smile.
  Now, back to RV news - thanks for letting this Bear brag on his school <g>.   dr

photo courtesy baylor.edu


In the Pink – Junior Takes Wing!

Sooner or later, the only thing left to do with an RV project is to go fly…and that’s exactly what we did with our RV-3 project this morning. “NX13PL” (aka “Junior” – for now) took wing for the first time about 0830 Houston time with a nice overcast at 4,000’ and winds behind a cold front adding a few bumps to the air. The Flight Test team consisted of me as the test pilot, Louise flying the RV-6 in chase, and a few well-trusted aviation friends to help out. Our neighbor and co-worker Steve Robinson (with a PhD in Aeronautical Engineering) acted as Test Director, riding in the right seat with Louise to keep an overall eye on the flight and make sure we stayed on task. Another neighbor, Dave Forster (F-1 builder/flyer) acted as the ground chief to make sure that I had finished the checklist and provide all those miscellaneous ground services – like running to get my sunglasses when I was already strapped in. Ernie Butcher was the man with the camera – when we get the shots from him, we’ll post an album. The first flight began at our airpark, and ended (as planned) at our neighboring field with a MUCH wider runway. The winds kicked up when we got there, so we elected to leave both planes there until the evening calm sets in. (more)

 - We appreciate all the many
 - Photo album

RV-3 Flight Number Two….There is a Reason We Prepare! ...one screw.

So RV-3 flight number one ended as planned on the wide runway at our neighboring airport. With a recent cold front passage, the winds were gusty and building, so we activated our contingency plan, tied the airplane down, and head home in our ground vehicles. The forecast was for the winds to drop as the day went by, so we re-planned for a 1500 (lcl) gathering time, and sent the team home for a few hours. When we got back together, the weather was great, so we launched for the flight we had planned – basically, a twenty-mile long “race track” for engine break-in. All went well until I had to make this call…

OK, I've just lost power – going for a good glide speed.” Test Director Steve, riding in the right seat of the chase plane, responded in a calm voice “Copy that, lost power – I’ll listen, you talk.” No hint of panic in either voice, but then, you have to understand, Steve and I have worked together, often sitting side by side in missions and training, for close to 15 years. We have handled THOUSANDS of simulated emergencies and failures – along with a few real ones. We know how each other thinks – and we were prepared. I calmly worked through the standard power loss checklist – the Whirlwind kept going round and round, but I had no throttle response. I switched tanks several times, tried the boost pump, played with the throttle and mixture – no joy. (continue)

Parked on one of Texas' thousands of gravel oil field 'runways'.

First Flight: Pascal 7A

Three RVs and Two Akbash Puppies

Chrysanthemum is a beautiful, 1 year old, white, female Akbash. She was found as a stray, emaciated, and rescued from a high kill shelter on the day of doom. She surprised everyone when she gave birth soon thereafter to puppies. (more)

● From Mother...

Really..there was some sun near Seattle today! ...Jim Piavis

The Puget Sound weather is settling into the winter crud with 3000' overcast over most of the sound earlier today and deteriorating down to 080 and rain later today, but 20 miles south, close to Mt. Rainier, the crud relaxed enough to get out from under the gloom and actually see some sun today... and all is right with the world! (more)

Oh what fun it is to ride in a...RV-7 ...Darren S.

I hijacked my kid out of school today. I told his teacher that he has an appointment with "Dr. RV". She bought it so we were good to go <g>.

[ed. YouTube wouldn't let me embed this clip.  Gotta go to the link.  dr]

First Flight RV-12 ...ch 242 site

Painted: Steve Garrett RV-12

Kudos to Vic Syracuse!!!! ...$700

Fri, Dec 9, 2011.  1223z
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!  dr

Finally getting around to a couple of photos, videos ...Keith Boardman (RV-12)

As requested, I will post some trip stuff. For starters, here's a video clip of my attempt to land at Corte, a small town at the base of the mountains in Corsica. Midday with temperatures around 30 degrees C (86F).

As background, Corsica is an French island perhaps 100 miles long by 40/50 miles wide in the Mediterranean. It has a range of mountains down the spine, soaring up to 9000 feet towards the north end.

No fancy music, I'm afraid. The video was shot with a Sony pencil camera mounted on top of the fin cap. It's a bit wide-angle, which can give the illusion that the plane is closer to the ground than it really is.



Lunch Flying Fix

I'd been a surface dweller too long (7 days since last flight).  Yesterday I got in a lunch flight down to Stephenville, TX for some grub at the Hard Eight BBQ.  Texted a few of the locals and it turned into a good old fashioned fly-out.  On the trip back Don Turner flew as my passenger so I could log a 1/2 hour of sim'd IFR hood time (thanks Don).  3,500' down and 4,500' back (187kt GS with tailwind).

Screen shot below showing the traffic on the way down.  A Mooney passed my left wing at my altitude going the opposite direction, so I called it out to the RV following me.  "You should see it in 30 seconds."  This traffic stuff rocks.

Felt great to get off the planet for a bit.

Gaggle of (5) RVs on a BBQ run.

click to enlarge

Down              Back

From the Mother Ship

● More From the Mother Ship

Video- Let the good times roll ...AX-O

I made a video of our 7-ship fly-by from last weekend. It was over Hesperia, CA. The video is short hope you like it.

[ed. Sorry couldn't embed it (YouTube's music copyright policy).
Click on pic to get the link.  dr]

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Pesky oil leak solved finally ...Ed DArcy

It's has been quit a while with this leak and i never thought to suspect the quick drain. 50 cents worth of parts and i am very happy. those o-rings only had thousands of hours on them. what a great invention. i can dump my oil by going thru the oil door to hook up a hose. i seem to get a nice click when i close the valve now. keep on pounding or flying.

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
(1) Left at this price

Totally Off Topic

Thu, Dec 8, 2011.  1205z     (contactThoughts on Safety

Snow Virgin ...John Eldridge (Arlington, TX)

I've never landed on snow before.

I flew up to Colorado on Tuesday. I was a fool and didn't check to see if my little airport was clear of snow. A snow storm had just passed thru the area the day before. So when I arrived I could see hangars, but only a hint of the runway. I didn't know how deep the snow was so I decided to go to the next... larger airport over (KTAD). I have used this airport in the past as a backup airport. It is always manned. Same guy since the 60's. I got someone on the unicom to verify that the runway was plowed. I must admit, that in my minds eye, I expected to just see black asphalt. What I saw was mostly white with a little black patch here and there. Thankfully there was virtually no wind. I setup for a normal approach. About 75-80 mph on final. As the mains touch down it was more or less normal except for the sound. It was sorta squashy sounding. I held the nose up.... as we all do and danced around on the rudder. The plane slowed down fairly quickly... but not as quickly as it did at Cedar Mills (Very nice grass strip in southern Oklahoma).

I was lucky that I was able to get a rental car.... instantaneously. For those of you who have never been in a remote area of the country, you just need to know that was miracle. Turns out that some other pilots were stuck in Trinidad for several days as the storm passed. They had just turned the rental car into the airport.

I had an average ground speed of 171 mph and a true airspeed of 193 mph. The total flying time was 3.5 hours for a distance 599 miles. I had an average fuel burn of 8.9 gph... which is high. I had to fly down low (under 3500 msl) for about half the flight. The last half was at my favorite cruising altitude of 8500.

Anyway... that was fun. Here a few pics for your enjoyment.

Modification- Pneumatic Rivet Puller ...Gary Robertson (RV-12)

I figured I'd post this here (versus the tool section) since a pneumatic rivet puller is seldom used on models other than the RV-12.

For those of you who use a pneumatic puller, have you found out how frustrating it is when the rivet 'stems' continually fall out of the slot in the gun's tailpiece? I had them falling out all the time and decided to find a solution. The cost? About $3.00. I went to ACE Hardware and bought a piece of flexible plumbing / sink drain tube, 1 1/2" inside diameter, 12" long. They sell it by the foot. I also bought a cork that fits in the end. Remove the tail piece from your gun that currently catches the rivet stems. In its place, slide the flex tub over the end of the gun and cap it off with a cork. The tube can be bent to be out of your way, and will catch 10-times more rivet stems than the original method, and they won't fall out if you tilt the gun the wrong way. At the end of the work session just remove the cork and dump the stems into the trash. Works great!

Tip for Attaching the Cabin Cover ...Bill Peyton RV-10

I finally decided that everything that needed to be done prior to the cabin cover attachment, had been completed. It sounded so final to epoxy it in place, but I moved forward. I was trying to come up with a way to get the epoxy around the doors, force it under and between, yet keep it clean and neat. What I came up with was as follows. I took new tube of latex caulking and pumped it out till it was empty. I pushed the plunger in the container back out the rear end and cleaned the tube out with water. I mixed up my epoxy and flox to the right consistency and then scooped it into the tube, re-inserted the piston into the tube, put it in my caulking gun and did the job. It worked out great, was neat and easy to clean up.

I intend to put a finish bead over the top using epoxy with micro ballons that will be smoother and easier to sand to a final finish using the same technique.

RV-10 Forum

RV-10 Door Fit Discussion

I have kept up with all the threads concerning the fit of the doors, which seems to be a bit of a #$%&......

I have to admit to still being a bit confused. Page 45-04 Fig 1 shows the door frame being trimmed parallel to the door so that it fits against the inside of the door. This makes a U-shaped channel which (presumably) the door seal fits in. So far, so good. But 43-3 Fig 1 seems to show the cut at the bottom of the frame being made parallel to the door sill, thus removing the channel leaving a 1" flat flange. Is that correct? Is the idea to remove pressure on the seal at the bottom to help with closing the door?

RV-10 Forum

In The Shop....



VAF Family
New Daddy ...Brian Wallis (RV-3 RV-10)

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Conditional inspection - week 4 ...John Artz

The conditional inspection turned up many issues.  400 for the A&P inspection plus repairs + prop seal totaled 1055.00.  I pulled the tanks for the gas leaks and prosealed the senders.  The ELT was shot so I ordered a new one that arrived two days ago. 179.00.  The transponder had a bulb burned out and with the 2 year certification 265.00.  Broken air box top aluminum plate and rivets 35.00

They ran the engine without the spinner and centrifugal force bent the extended flanges out so more down time waiting for a new spinner backer plate.  And the hanger went to 9 below zero one night so slow going.

I went EXP because the GA A/C was so expensive. So much for that plan

● (later in same thread - Brian Carroll's inspection)

I went experimental for the fun of it. Today I finished Aurora's first "Condition Inspection". The two of us only managed to log 91hrs in the first year, but we had fun getting to know each other. The condition inspection was a first for me, I took my time(1 week) going over everything with a fine tooth comb and even had a A&P friend help me do my first compression check and look over the firewall forward stuff. Squawks were 1 loose exhaust hanger, 3 loose baffle screws and both gearleg fairings were had cracked at the upper clamps. Total cost <$5 worth of fiberglass stuff. Also I installed a little AL tape to block 1/3 of the oil cooler. All fixed up and still daylight out SO might as well celebrate the occasion with a Sunset Flight:

Then tuck her away until our next rendezvous....tomorrow's looking promising...

Life is good and experimentals are fun!

Totally Off Topic

Wed, Dec 7, 2011.  1214z    (contactThoughts on Safety

Waiting on Snow ...Luke in Italy

click to enlarge

A Nice Wired.com Article on Van's Aircraft ...by Jason Paur

Roll on the Grass ...Vlad

Tony and I make right decisions super fast and often invade on a very short notice. Our territory is pretty much exhausted and we are conquering close neighbors. It's not exactly RV Occupation but rather Expansion of boundaries.

Weather so so where do we go? Virginia? Da. Tomorrow Monday we are both off. You pick me up in the air, frequency 123.45. Good.

Our ports are 20 minutes apart. APRS is our primary tracking device I am 5 miles inbound to Tony's place. See his yellow bird taking off and intercepting me. Regular business.

Target was 53VG a newly commissioned grass strip. The drome belongs to a VAF member, avid flyer and very energetic gentleman Glen Salmon. During my recent trip to the Bahamas I did reconnaissance of the field and already knew what to expect. We decided to give it couple tries then if in doubt we go to a concreted WWII airport only couple miles away.

We crossed the pond, did some loose formation flying, watched big guys practice at Dover and totally enjoyed the flight. In an hour and a change Glen's hangar was in sight. With so so visibility it can be seen from 10 miles if vis is excellent I probably could see him from Princeton just need to get high enough. (continue / many, many pictures)

What did you do yesterday? ...Darren Scarlett (Canada)

I'm really loving this Drift HD camera. The weather was beckoning yesterday and as Maverick would say, "There was no danger....so I took it".

I blasted out of my home strip for points across the mountains. A fun little trip to break up the winter blues. Hope you like it.

n The Shop....
Tom Argentieri RV-9A Left Wing DONE

Finished-up the wing with the help of a friend tonight. Getting those bottom skins on wasn't as challenging as I expected... 36" long gorilla arms helped

So bright and shiny it's hard to take a good picture.

VAF Family
Waiting (new daddy-to-be Brian Wallis)

Sitting in the hospital right now waiting for my excuse for an RV-10 to pop into this world It was love when she said... "Honey we need a two seater!"  So I married her and soon we will need a 4 seater!  I'm looking around at everyone's RV-10 and there are some nice ones out there...

My knee is killing me “Theater Knees or Chondromalacia”

After being out of flying for 6 years I want to get back into it and I’d like to get into a Vans or a Rocket.

I’m suffering from what my Doctor calls Theater Knees or “Chondromalacia” After a couple of hours sitting in my Viper my right knee is killing me and I need to get out of the car.

Of the Van’s AC what one would allow me to have a straighter leg extension? The more my knee is bent the worse it is. If I wrap my knee and pull the knee cap to the side this does help and gives me maybe another 30 mins or so. I’m 54 yrs old at 5’11”, 205 pds decent shape and I still lightly exercise 5 days a week. I’m thinking the 30 years of heavy weight training has done its damage and now I’m paying the price.

I like the centerline seating of the RV4 or the RV8 but maybe the side by side would be better.

Anyone out there suffering from this and what are you flying?

(lots of folks chiming in)

Totally Off Topic

Tue, Dec 6, 2011.  1208z   (contactThoughts on Safety

RV-9A Status ...Don Jones (Las Cruces, NM)

I finally finished the glass work, with exception of the main gear wheel pants and gear leg fairings (for obvious reasons). Pulled everything out of the garage to clean and reorganize everything. It's amazing how much dust you create working on fiberglass. I spent almost 6 hours redoing the garage. Looks nice now! Probably can't find anything though.

So all major construction is done, basic wiring is done. Just need the engine baffles and plenum, avionics wiring, mostly the efis's, radio stack is wired. Not going to put it on the gear until avionics wiring is done. Just need to rob a bank and this thing will be getting close.

Couple Observations by Joe Blank ...about the recent Mythbusters episode.

Another observation I made, was when KK (Ken Kreuger RV-4) and I (RV-6) were commuting down to Tracy from the Mother Ship, we had a long time (3+ hrs) to play with this. At RV cruise speeds the effect is not quite as pronounced but it was still there.  KK played most of the time while I led. What I found as Lead blew me away. While at cruise power/speeds and KK in trail he was able to affect my heading! At first I thought, 'No Way'... At that altitude the air was glass though and danged if he didn't keep pulling my nose to the left and off course. From then on I could tell when he was effectively playing in "Thuh Sweet Spot" and draggin' me around the sky... Pretty weird..

I again had a chance to try this today while flying the RV-9A on a reposition flight with Gus, who was flying the factory 7A. Even at cruise speeds I was able to easily locate the spot and get in it. The 9A seemed to be a bit more controllable in that spot, possibly due to that wings different airfoil, aspect ratio, etc. I want to say that it felt just more efficient too, but without any data capture capability I can't document it. Just sayin' maybe we should instrument a -9 airframe and try it.

Great science project! Thanks to all for participating and watching.

Chad Hankins RV-7 Status ...Sammamish, WA

How am I supposed to get this out of my garage.  At least that is what my neighbors keep asking me. ;-)
Wings on, Engine ordered.. http://www.704ch.com

Bruno Dionne's New RV-4 Panel ...'RV-4' in the forums.

For your enjoyment

Here we go, finally posting a picture of the complete panel.  Being flying behind it for 2 months and love it.  Skyview SV-D700 with Pitch & Roll autopilot.  (Picture taken with my cellphone (not the best ) enroute from CYMX to CYRQ, 3000', 142 KTS TAS..and smooth as glass).

Formation practice video ...AX-O

I made a video of my formation practice flight from last week. Hope you guys like it. I am not perfect yet but I am working on it. And yes that is my callsign.


Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
New RV-10 Seat Cover supplier

FS- BACK SUPPORT by Anti-Splat-Aero

Totally Off Topic

Mon, Dec 5, 2011.  1054z
  Good morning!  Wet all weekend here in N. Texas, and raining this morning.  No nice, sunny weather to fly in at all.  Our daughter took the S.A.T. Saturday morning and she and I are touring TCU today, so most of the weekend revolved around those things.  TCU has strong medical and science tracks, which she has shown interest in, and it's only an hour from Mom and Dad.  Airplane stuff maybe later in the week when I get caught up.  Tue-Thu look promising for a quick lunch flight - maybe one of those will pan out.
  Pushing this out earlier than usual so we can get a jump on the morning traffic down to TCU.  If I put a VAF cap on her during the tour and take a picture, can I expense the mileage? ;^)  Yep, that's her in the pic at right.  1997.  Just started construction of our RV-6 - a plane whose N-number would end up being her birthday and initials.  Go Bears Frogs...this could get confusing if the scholarship gods smile on us and she likes the school!  Boy, she grew up fast.  Like snapping your fingers fast.
  Hope you had a great weekend and that Monday goes swell.
   (contactThoughts on Safety

RV-10 First Flight

Today was an incredibly great day for the first flight of my RV-10.  Deep blue sky, calm winds, balmy 70 degrees and best of all family and friends attending with full support.  William Black who is the local RV Guru offered to fly chase in his Harmon Rocket. The flight was uneventful (the way I wanted it) but still a very exciting event. All systems functioned as expected and the plane flew hands off. Temperatures were somewhat low with CHT's running around 300F and oil temps around 175F at 2500 RPMs and 24inches of manifold pressure.

I received a lot of help from aviation enthusiasts everywhere but best of all was a chance to fly Jae Chang's RV-10 just a couple of days ago.

Thank you all.

(more pics)

Well...Jerry Fischer

N364SJ defied gravity for the first time today.  Many, many thanks to all the folks who supported the effort.  Dave Henderson another RV-7 driver, made the first flight and said it climbed very well, and flew hands off.

NX13PL - Airplane!

One step closer to flight!

Yesterday, Ann Asberry showed up at our hangar with her trusty assistant Mel in tow. It is clear to me (second time with the Asberry’s doing a licensing inspection) who REALLY does the work in this pair. Ann stands back and makes meaningful observations while Mel pokes and prods – she even makes him do all the paperwork when it’s all over! Every once in awhile, she says things like “is that a drip of red I see on the brake bleeder?” Amazing how nothing slips past her. (one slight turn of the wrench, and the drip was gone). Mel did manage to find the one jam nut I left loose (mixture ball joint at the servo) just to test him, but overall, the airplane passed muster – here are the proud parents being presented with the birth certificate: (more)

Airworthy! ...Rob Holmes RV-3

November Five Niner Lima Gulf received its airworthiness certificate yesterday afternoon at the hands of NY based Jon Ross. There were a few too many threads on a bolt here and a missing placard there, but overall it was a painless process. Many thanks to my Dad and the entire crew at EAA chapter 1250. They were a huge resource during the final push at the end. (more)

First flight observations from 9855J (long) ...James Woolard

Have made 5 flights in my 0-320 powered, 975 lb, RV-6 so far and after some initial ground control issues caused by me I am pleased to report that every flight is getting better! The biggest difference for me is the speed. I'm used to flying along at 100kts in my 172 (now for sale) and my 160 to 170 kts in the 6 are enough to make me smile. I noticed yesterday that I was actually catching up to and passing traffic! I am breaking in new chrome cylinders and am keeping no less than 2300 rpm on the tach and am in the yellow airspeed arc constantly; I can see where a moments inattention along with inadvertently easing the nose over would have me very close to Vne.

At first I had the breather line on the front of the engine and filled it to the full 8 qts of 40w mineral oil. Big mistake. 3 qts shot out of there in 2 hrs or so and I have learned that 5 qts is adequate for the engine and repositioning the breather to the accessory case location has hopefully ended my excessive oil wastage. Yesterday I flew .8 and used only a minimum amount of oil.

My cht and oil temperature are very low with cht at 275 and oil temperature 150. Im somewhat concerned that these low temps will delay the proper seating of the piston rings in my chrome cylindered engine. And that low oil temperature is with the oil cooler completely blocked off. Also I attached a Kat 150w sump pad heater and after only a half hour of using it noticed that the whole engine compartment was warmed and my oil temp started to rise immediately after starting the engine.

The airplane is easy to fly. I'm very pleased at the ease with which I am able to hold heading and altitude. Even with a slightly heavy pilots side wing I am able to comfortably cruise along and enjoy the experience. As for the heavy wing I'm not inclined to take any action immediately but eventually I will probably need a trim tab.

The aircraft is loud. I haven't upgraded my headsets yet and hopefully new headsets will help but for now I have to remember the earplugs. And drafty. It seems that there is a torrent of air coming from behind the baggage bulkhead; from under the bumps formed in the material. I will have to seal them off soon as its going to get cold here in the Chicago area soon. And with my low cht and overall low engine temps my heater is not that effective. I may need a blanket to go with the earplugs!

I have not done any airwork or stalls yet so I'm using 75kts for an approach speed and next time I may reduce it to 70kts because I have been floating and bouncing through my landings. As soon as I get some sort of indication that the piston rings have seated and the engine will tolerate throttle jockeying and the accompanying heating and cooling I will find out stall speeds and settle on a more precise approach speed.

I experimented with leaning the mixture yesterday and noticed that the floor vibration fluctuated with adjustments to the mixture.

I have so many people to thank for helping me during the 13 year build. Lots of guys on this forum helped me immeasurably without ever knowing it. Little things like using the 7mm washers inside the brackets for the Crow restraint systems to big things like using nutplates in place of hinges for the cowl attachment. This forum and the posters on here helped make my plane better and I do appreciate it.

RV-10 Builders and Fliers: The RV-10 Forum Wants You To Goof Off At Work Today!

Some recent activity to keep you from typing that status report:

(Related) Work Shmork.  VAF on...

From 'papamike'...

I need more like these to spotlight.

In The Shop....
Rudi's RV-10 Progress

SARL Season wrap up video or "there's that Bob Mills again"

First engine run and taxi ...Kevin Phelps

We did our first engine run and taxi today in our 7a. All went well, a couple of small problems that were quickly fixed that allowed for the taxi test. Inspection will be next week. Bunch of friends from the airport were with us for morale support. This is what amateur aviation is all about.

RV-1 Restoration
Canopy pics

Totally Off Topic

Well there's your problem....

Fri, Dec 2, 2011.  1205z
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.
   (contactThoughts on Safety

RV-10 First Flight- Best Christmas Ever! ...Wayne Gillispie (and family)

Went to bed 9:30 pm last night. Slept good til 2:00 am then off and on til we got up at 5:30 am. I kept waking up wondering if I had forgotten anything or what my plan was for an emergency. Would it really fly?

Boy does it fly! 155 kts at 2550 rpm, wot, 5000' without pants/fairings. I have only been that fast in a 172 during emerg descent. Need to adj gov high spd stop before next flight. CHT's on this cool day= 338-388F.

Thanks to my wonderful wife of 22 years and two children, a 10 yr old's dream has come true. I want to thank all of the great people I have met here on VAF. A special thanks to Ted Chang (-9A) for that first RV flight, tons of build help, motivational trip reports and photography today. Jim Combs(-10) for several t-n-g's and many good phone conversations starting all the way back in 2006. David Maib(-10) for excellent transition training in FL. Also Van's Acft, Stein Air, Stark Avionics, GRT, Lycoming and Hartzell. Thanks to Geoff Combs(-10) for flying chase and photography today. Now to buy some more fuel and plan that SW trip for next summer, Alaska the following year. Keep pounding those rivets...it is so worth it. (more photos)

Science of formation drag reduction ...Steve Smith

OK, now that we got everyone excited, I thought I would write just a bit on the science of what is going on, and especially, how it is that the lead plane benefits in a V formation.

The first thing to understand is simply that there is a circulating field around an airplane because of the trailing vortices. There is generally upwash outboard of each trailing vortex, downwash inboard, and sidewash above and below. Mathematically, we can compute what the induced velocity is, based on the distance from the vortex -- for a vortex that starts at one point and trails downwind to infinity (they almost do!) the tangential velocity drops off as 1/r, r being the perpendicular distance from the vortex. But also significant is that the effect extends significantly upwind of the origin point of the vortex. As you would expect, the farther upwind of the origin point you go, the weaker the induced flow is, but it is important to understand that it does extend upwind - the tangential flow can't just abruptly stop at some point, it decays slowly with distance. If you want to look up the actual math equation for the tangential flow, its called the Biot-Savart Law.

Next, why does flying in an induced upwash field reduce the drag? Mathematically there are couple of different ways to illustrate this, each gives the same answer. For those of you that have some technical background, it comes from the Kutta-Joukowski theorem that describes the force acting on a vortex in cross-flow. Just as the lift comes from rho x U x gamma, induced drag (or thrust) comes from rho x W x gamma. So if W is positive upward, you get thrust on the bound vortex. For lay folks, perhaps easiest to understand is to consider a glider flying along a ridge where the wind is turned upward by the ridge, and the glider is able to fly level along the ridge because of the upward flow. You could say that the glider is still descending through the air at its normal sink rate, but the whole parcel of air, with the glider in it, is being carried upward at the same rate. The glider doesn't know that it is flying level, it thinks it is descending through the air. So, a powerplane flying in an upwash field can reduce the amount of power needed to fly level at the same speed, because it thinks it is descending through the flow.

OK, now to formation flight. One interesting case is line-abreast formation. In this case, each airplane feels some upwash from its neighbors. There is a superposition effect. The tip vortex from my neighbor's nearest tip is producing a lot of upwash for me, but the vortex from my neighbor's far tip is producing some downwash for me. But it is farther away, so it is not as strong; there is a net upwash. If there is another airplane beyond him, I feel weak effects from those vortices too - each airplane in the line adds some upwash from its near tip, and less downwash from its far tip. The guy in the middle is feeling net upwash from every single airplane in the formation, and he gets the most benefit in the formation.

Another interesting case is a very pointy V formation, where the 'sweep angle' of the V is large. In this case, the lead plane feels very little benefit, because it is too far upstream of its neighbors. Each plane is flying in the strong upwash of the neighbor in front of it, and getting a MUCH weaker benefit from the neighbor behind it. The planes near the tail of the V are feeling the accumulated upwash of the whole family of trailing vortices, and get the most benefit.

Now here is where it gets cool -- at least I think its cool: There is an optimum V angle, in between the two cases I described above, where the accumulated benefit of all the vortices produces EQUAL benefit for each plane in the formation. The V angle is flat enough so that there is enough upwind effect from each airplane to benefit the neighbor in front of it just enough so the net benefit is equal for each plane. This result, mathematically optimized, was first published by Peter Lissemann in 1970 in a science journal. You might recognize Peter Lissemann's name as one of the co-founders of Aerovironment along with Paul McCready. So this explains why we measured a substantial benefit for the leader.

Anyway, the cool thing about this ideal V angle is that it is self-seeking. In a flock of birds, if the ones near the middle of the formation are stronger, they pull ahead, making the V angle steeper, thus benefiting the birds out toward the tails of the V so they can catch up. If the birds near the middle of the formation get tired and drop back, making the V angle flatter, then they, near the middle, feel more benefit, so they can rest. So the V angle is stable -- birds naturally fall into the right angle that allows all the birds to keep up the same speed.

As far as the actual fuel saving....one wild card in our method is fuel-air mixture. Carburetors and fuel injection don't necessarily maintain constant fuel-air mixture as you change throttle setting. On my Bendix FI, if I lean to peak EGT at cruise power, the mixture lever is not as far back as if I lean to peak at idle. We got very significant reductions in manifold pressure in formation, and I think on some of the airplanes, the fuel flow reductions were similar. In some of the planes, the fuel flow reduction seemed less than I expected based on manifold pressure reduction. What I can say is that the actual fuel flow measurements from the instruments in the West Coast Ravens airplanes were extremely accurate. We were down to counting pulse-widths and averaging over significant lengths of time.

The other variable, of course, is how well each airplane stayed in its "sweet spot". The best position actually has some wingtip overlap, which is a position that the formation guys are not used to. Although the flow is smooth in that position (not the difficult task of holding in perfect trail), it is fairly dynamic - the roll moment and side force are changing as you move around in the vortex. And of course, there are throttle excursions all the time to hold position, which tend to offset some of the benfit.

All told, I was really pleased that we got the results we did, about 3-5% benefit for each plane. When we did the two-ship F-18 test, with some cockpit display aids using differential GPS to help hold the optimum position, we saw more like 12% (and there are some good stories about those tests too!)

Anyway, glad you all enjoyed the show. Not RV-related, but I also worked on an upcoming episode called Fireworks Man #2, so watch for it.

Saying Thanks to Van! ...Paul talks RV-1

A couple of years ago, when I was first shown the RV-1 sitting in a dusty corner of a quiet hangar, I thought to myself “you know, I bet we could find twenty-five or thirty experienced RV folks that have built a few airplanes and have the wherewithal to write a four-figure check to buy this thing and give it back to Dick!” Let’s face it – while many, many builders struggle and scrimp to build their RV’s as inexpensively as possible, there is also a large number who are easily spending north of six figures to complete their glass-equipped traveling dreams. With a single SL-40 costing $1400, was it that out of line to figure we could pool some money to say “Thanks” to Van for all he has done?

A year ago, purchasing the RV-1 became a reality due primarily to the generous donation of an anonymous donor who also thinks that Dick should be recognized by the community. I received many notes congratulating Louise and I on the purchase. Let me be very clear – Louise and I did not purchase, and have never owned the RV-1! It was purchased and paid for by the non-profit “Friends of the RV-1”. My dream and vision is shared by others – I was simply the person who bubbled it up to a visible surface.

Through the generous initial donation of the aircraft, we were able to get started on the restoration, and the overall goal of reconnecting the airplane to its creator, then putting it on permanent display at Oshkosh is well on its way. Most of the hardware needed to get it flying has been generously donated by the vendors who support our avocation. Most of the labor required to this point has also been provided free of charge by builders who wanted to contribute – heck, the “Friends” doesn’t even supply lunch on the work days (Jay Pratt has done that)! But there are still expenses with the restoration that need to be covered, and the cost of bringing the entire dream to reality are still up ahead – costs for operating and displaying the airplane will rise as we get it airworthy. We have been very quiet on the fund-raising front to this point, but it is time to think about the future – the fly-in season of 2012, and taking the airplane around the country to its finish at Oshkosh. (continue)

Moving door pin holes ...RV-10 forum

Has anyone had success moving their door pin holes?

I drilled one of mine earlier and after all was said and done, the aft hole for the door shifted inboard about 1/16". I'd really like the door to sit as close to flush as possible so I don't make any additional work for myself. As it stands right now, I'd have to add quite a bit of filler to build-up the door and that would be enough to cover the tops of the screws holding the plastic pin guides in the door.

My thought is to go ahead and oval the hole in the bulk head enough to bring the door flush, then rivet a doubler plate with the properly sized 7/16" hole on the backside of the oval. Of course it would be the same thickness as bulkhead. I have plenty of pin extension to pull it off.
  • Has anyone done this successfully?
  • Are there any other techniques out there that I haven't thought of?
  • I'm assuming the door pin holes must be a tight fit (minimal slop) and that slightly enlarging the hole (without the doubler idea) is a bad idea?

VAF Family
From Matt Ziemann...

My mom (a very accomplished cooking school teacher/food stylist) made a cookie cake groom’s cake for our wedding on November 19th.  Did a pretty good job turning my RV-4 into a cookie cake.

.2 hr Touch 'n Go Practice

Yesterday at lunch.  Wx moving in this weekend and had a window for a little time to get away from the surface.  Thought the pic below was interesting.  Note the first lap (wind from the right) is wide and they get progressively smaller as I got more experience reading the wind - shooting for 180° descending base/final turns to flare with no power changes.  The little 'climbs' in the elevation plot are me pulling the manual flaps.

11 minutes on the clock.  Rough calc comes out to $6.50 in avgas <g>.

click to enlarge.

Totally Off Topic

Adapt and Overcome...

Thu, Dec 1, 2011.  1207z 
  Love my RV-6.  Flew down to Waco yesterday to work on Mom's computer.  Flight following with ATC and cloudless skies made it a pleasure.  On the way back approach kept me high through class B so I didn't have to endure the bumps lower as long.  They called out a KC-135 climbing at my 11 o'clock five miles - I had him on the G3X traffic screen before they even called him out to me <g>.  Right over the top of the canopy - looked cool.  Back on the keyboard by lunch.  Mom says hey.
  Mythbusters last night was awesome.  Thanks Shadey for wearing the VAF cap - that got our kids to actually yell out loud <g>.  Loved the slo mo footage!  Great piece that painted GA in a wonderful light.
   (contactThoughts on Safety

The final rivet! ...Rob Holmes RV-3

It has been 5 years and 1 month since I started my 3B. In that time I have transfered jobs while relocating from St Louis to Philly, got married, bought a house, gutted said house, experienced first hand a refinery closure, and am now preparing for another job transfer and move from Philly to San Francisco. So there I was, somewhere between 6,000 - 11,000 rivets under my belt, with just one lowly pop rivet standing in the way of my date with the DAR this Friday. It never stood a chance.

December Calendar Wallpaper Online

Mythbusters Episode with RVs in it Aired Last Night

- Thread of congrats

- Fuel flow measured to 1/7000th of a gallon per hour

- http://www.westcoastravens.com

From the Factory FB Page

The Skyview project moved a couple more of steps closer to shipping this week.

Not too long ago we shipped a Skyview kit, with all the parts and instructions, to our East Coast representative Mitch Lock in Maryland. Mitch has installed it in New Blue, his East Coast RV-12 demonstrator.

Using feedback from Mitch, engineering will have the drawings ready to release – in Vanspeak, at “Rev 0” -- in about two weeks.

Once the engineering drawings have been released, we can move on with the final procuring of all the components we don’t manufacture in-house. We have been working on this for some time, and many components are already in stock, but others had to wait until the final engineering decisions were made.  more

In The Shop....
Made New Tip-Up Rear Metal Canopy Fairing and then Powder Coated it! ...Mike Norton

Due to the fiberglass canopy fairing at the tip up joint on my RV6 departing during flight I needed to make a new one. Luckily an airport neighbor returned what was left of the original one and I sort of used it as a pattern. I didn't really look forward to laying one up with fiberglass so I thought I would try to make one from some extra .020 aluminum I had. Kevin my RV8 builder friend assisted with design, hole alignment and dimpling.

We decided it would be easier to handle if it were made in two pieces and overlapped them at the center top. I have always been fond of powder coating and find it simple to apply and more durable than paint. The biggest issue is having a big enough oven to bake the coated part. I recently received a new catalog from Eastwood Company which contained a yellow powder that looked like it matched my plane color almost exactly so I thought I would try it. I decided if I didn’t like it I could strip it and base coat/clear coat it later.

Below are a few pictures as the project developed. I used every third screw of the existing canopy mount to secure the fairing. I believe I will remove both sides and add a small bead of sealer just to prevent water getting under the leading edge. 

VAF Family
New QB Project ...Phil Perry (RV-10)

We didn't have kids when I started thinking about building an airplane. I wanted an RV-7 and I was close to pulling the trigger on it.

Then my wife stepped in and said, "No. If you want to build an airplane you need 4 seats for kids."

I explained that she just doubled the cost, time, and work, but she didn't seem to care. If we were going to have an airplane we were going to have four seats.

Fast forward to Nov 2011.

It's a good thing I listened to her because we now have one kiddo and another in the QB factory. And she was right when she said the RV-10 fits our mission much more than a RV-7.

Arrival in June. Shipping is relatively cheap. Hopefully we can still make OSH 2012.

David Domeier Update 

It was a gorgeous flight from SOCAL, through the corridor at LAX, SMO, Camarillo, Santa Barbara and on to Salinas for a fuel stop. The interior valley was covered with a white blanket of fog but along the coast it was clear until SFO but Livermore was clear so it was along the east edge of the SFO class B (the top of the Golden Gate bridge was sticking out of the fog) and north across Travis and along the high ground west of Sacramento direct to Redding which was also clear, for another fuel stop. Mount Shasta was visible for 100 miles or more. The flight past Mt. Shasta was picture perfect, smooth and most enjoyable.

But then it all came to screeching stop at Medford, OR, 900' overcast and all was a blanket of fog looking north. The sun was shining brightly 12 miles south of Medford so I dropped in at Ashland and called Jerry for plan B. He suggested I strike out for Bend as it would be an easy trip to Portland in the morning, so here I am in Bend, driving an old Mercedes provided by the FBO, and staying at the Phoenix Inn in down town Bend. This is a very nice place to spend the evening plus the service at the airport is outstanding. The flight from Ashland took me across Crater Lake. Wow, what a winter wonder land, sure glad the trusty Lycoming did not miss a beat as all roads up there appear to be closed with snow. I did not linger and in fact detoured slightly until I could see a road with traffic.

Coming across from Bend this morning it was Mt Jefferson and Mt Hood lined up looking north....this country is awesome. I am most impressed at the natural beauty of Oregon.

Vans factory is also very impressive - the tour a very fitting end to this journey. The success of these airplanes can best be illustrated by what I just did, fly some 2200 miles in three days and see America, what a deal!

And to top it off, a great salmon dinner this evening prepared by Susan Cochran....RV people are the best.

Trio Avionics Has Three New Videos Online

Pro Pilot Basic Operation, Intercept Mode and 'G' Force Limiting

Totally Off Topic