Mon Dec 31,
2012 Last day of the year, and the 2012 pledge drive.
Advertiser income went down (economy slump) by almost the same amount as
donations went up, so all in all our family ended up about the same
place as last year. Thank you for donating this year - it
ABSOLUTELY made the difference. Thank you! Thank you!
Thank you! I'll bug you about money again in about six months, and
I'm hoping you enjoy the website in 2013.
It has always been very important to me that the logo
this site uses represent the act of giving to those less fortunate. If
you weren't aware, every penny that I have earned on the caps and shirts
over the lifespan of this website has gone to charity - many thousands
of dollars. It is my wish that this continue. None of this would have
happened by the way without the generous help of the folks at Avery
Tools. They shipped VansAirForce.net caps and shirts all over the world
for years and never made a penny from it - they gave all the money made
to those less fortunate.
A few people have asked that the logo be put on some different types of
merchandise, and that sounds like a good idea to me. Since I can't
afford to front the money for this, as I'm a small business and have a
kid about to start college, here is what I propose to make it happen.
I'll provide a high-quality logo image on the site soon that anyone can
download to their computer and/or memory stick. This file can be taken
to any local embroidery shop near you and placed on any item you desire.
I offer this image up for use with one caveat:
that you agree to donate at least $10 to the charity of your choice for
each item you have made. I'd ask that you also try to insert an image of the
item after you receive it in the 'Acts of Charity' section of the VAF
forums with a short description of the charity that you selected.
I certainly want to spotlight these on the front page!
This method will make my life a little easier, will support small
businesses across the country in a troubled economy, will continue to
help people less fortunate, and will provide you the site logo on the
exact item that you want it on, whether that be patch, silkscreened
T-shirt, long sleeve hoodie, sticker, or whatever. I hope this
meets with your approval.
Happy New Year to the best flying community online!
Kindest and best,
Doug (and family)
PS: I flew the RV 25.4 hrs this year -
frugal flying that saves that college money! On the upside, if you
look at that number in little .2-.3 hr increments, how I fly it, it
comes out to a short flight about every three or four days.
PSS: No edition Jan 1st. Mothership closed on Jan 1st
the Spot...Smokey Ray What do get when you cross and RV-4 with an RV-6? The RVX or “X” as I
call it! Over the past twenty years I have been privileged to help build and
re-build three marvelous personal aircraft. Markedly different, but marvelous
There's a first time for everything...accidental VFR
into IMC (great read)
Being an instrument rated pilot, I never really gave much thought to the
"accidental VFR into IMC" thing. I mean, sure, it's great to tell folks without
the ticket right? Anyway, this happened to ...ummm... a "friend" of mine
recently. Ok, it was me. And I prostrate myself before VAF in the hopes that my
experience might help someone else.
Fri Dec 28,
2012 Wishing everyone a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!
RV configured for snow...
first flight...Jerry Jackson RV-10
I flew my RV-10 today for the first time after 2 years of work. It has an
IO-540 with electronic ignition from Aero Sport Power, and a three-MFD Garmin
G3X with 650 GPS and Trio Avionics autopilot on a beautiful panel by Pacific
Flew out of KRNM on a cool, beautiful morning. The plane was very stable
and a joy to fly.
Thanks for all who gave their advice on this web site. It was much
TruTrak, Dynon, etc.. surplus goodies for sale!...SteinAir "Once again we are cleaning out our excess surplus at the end of the
year. The deal with these items is the first person to get hold of us and has
the money on each particular item gets it . Best is to email or PM or call!
Items do not include shipping charges."
796 Pirep & GDL 39 ...Kahuna
Recently made some panel changes to get the 796 on it. I
primarily went for this unit due to its feature set and ADSB
weather integration with the GDL 39 which I also wanted to move
to off XM.
The bare wire install with the docking station is a nice
installation for the RV-8. I do not like things running around
my cockpit like ipads and things. I preferr clean and usable.
I mounted the unit with screen tilt up and inward toward me more direct
field of view. This is useful and makes touch screen activity
I found this my first touch screen in the cockpit to be actually very
nice. The speed at which you can move, select, pinch, expand,
scoll etc on the unit is faster than I can mentally keep up.
ADSB weather comes available at ~2k'agl.
I thought the GPS signal quality running around the hanger and
house with it was going to be fine and not need an external
antenna. I was wrong. In the weather at night I have twice lost
gps signal while airborne. I have the remote antenna for the 796
on order. Ill add that to my low profile antenna farm on me
I remote mounted the GDL 39 and remote mounted the external ADSB
antenna to the belly of the plane. Again I dont like things
running around the cockpit. Boxes in view, antennas sticking up
etc. It fit nicely between the right gear tower and the baggage
wall. A 90deg SMA connector on the RG400 kept a low profile
install. Neat, clean, and out of the way.
I have tried both hard wire and bluetooth on the GDL 39. I found
bluetooth less reliable with the GDL unit mounted a couple of
metal plates away from the 796. So I recommend hard wire for
remote installs between the GDL 39 and the 796.
Here's the follow-up... ...Scott Stewart rough engine Last night I was able to follow up on a couple of the
suggestions offered here.
Thu Dec 27,
Flies!...Walt Shipley RV-12 On Saturday morning at 11:00, I took off from our 3,000' strip here
at Hensley Airpark in NE TN in my RV-12. She flew like an RV, which is saying a
lot. No problems except for a slightly heavy right wing.
Now I'm officially a 3peater, having built and flown an RV8 and an 8A.
21, 2012 To get you in the holiday spirit, please enjoy these
Christmas tunes performed by the 6th grade trumpet section at a local
Barnes and Noble (my son in the Santa cap next to the teacher).
He's playing the trumpet I used back in 6th grade, purchased by my
parents. Hope you enjoy!
Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend! See ya
One more RV-7A for the Hobbs Meter ...Jay Bell
I just wanted to say thanks to everyone who helped me build and fly this
plane. It has 20 hours of testing on it so far, and flies well. Looking
back, I received a lot of help from family, friends, and people in the aviation
Some of the people that helped include:
- My wife and family for patience and help to build it
- The staff at Van’s for a great design, quality kit, and helpful advice. - My friend
Don for teaching me about airplanes for the last 20 years
- Kitplanes Magazine for two decade’s worth of inspiration and information
- Doug Reeves and contributors to VansAirforce
- Suppliers such as Aero Sport Power, Catto Props, Sabre Manufacturing,
Vetterman Exhaust, Dynon Avionics, and Aircraft Spruce for good products and
- Jerry Mulder for helping me through the Transport Canada inspection process
- And especially to Mike Seager for teaching me how to fly an RV!
I included a few photos below that remind of the best parts of the
building process. I’m sure you have 10,000 other customers with similar
pictures and experiences.
Rebuilt engine re-hung on old school RV-6... my bud
(and A&P) Randy 'Monkey' Richmond's ride.
Seen at theVanCave (.com) ...Rob laying up some
fairings for his Grove gear.
I've been scanning the forums for quite some time now and finally decided
to sign up. There is a phenomenal amount of knowledge and help
flying (no pun intended) around here and I am really looking
forward to being a part of it.
Well, a little about me. I am a current Active Duty Marine, stationed in
Beaufort South Carolina. I am actually an Ejection Seat and
Environmental Control Systems Mechanic on F/A-18's by trade,
however currently I am the Airframes Division Chief. My division
covers everything from sheet metal work, hydraulics, landing
gear, flight surfaces, cabin pressurization, oxygen systems, ECS,
the Ejection Seat, as well as the pilot's flight equipment.
On top of that, I am also a entrepreneur. I recently started an Auto
Glass business in my area and it really seems to be doing well.
I consider it my "exit strategy" for when I get out of the
Marine Corps in less than a year.
I am looking to start an RV-8 build and am just in the planning stage and
"tool acquiring" stage for now. But, like I said, this place
seems awesome and I am looking forward to absorbing as much
knowledge as I can. Thank you all in advance and I look forward
to seeing you throughout the boards!
Made the Jump.....Again! ...Randy Pflanzer Just fired off my FAX order to Vans for the the -12. This is
definitely my last airplane. I swear, it's the last one. No more.
Plans are to build E-LSA and paint it like my Rocket. Hope to finish in a
year or so now that I am (soon to be) retired.
Tip up canopy buldge fwd ends (RV-7)
Seeking advice on how to eliminate my canopy outward bow where it
transitions to the C-702 skin.
I have already aggressively trimmed the canopy and the C-702 with not
Christmas Early ...Brantel Well my birthday is Dec. 26th and all my life I have been sorta
shorted in that regard since it is so close to the birthday of Jesus. I mean who
can compete with that????
Anyway, this year makes up for it!
Made it to the airport !...704CH
This weekend the RV went for its first ride all the way to Paine Field !
With borrowed truck and enclosed trailer, the move went without
a hitch. Even though snow flurries started as Bekah and I got to
the airport. The plane is now safe in its permanent home and I
have a long cold winter of work ahead of me. First flight this
spring ? ? Hope so!
All the parts and pieces...Flyguytki
All the parts and pieces should be going to the paint shop first thing in
January, a couple of weeks of paint, a month or so of final
assembly and then it should be ready to go. Its starting to get
Two more -10s airworthy...JDanno
N616JJ got it's pink slip after 4 1/2 years. On the same day my hanger
owner and good friend got his pink slip for his -10 (N710LE).
Two in one day and both out of the same hanger at 2M2 which is
in central Tennessee. Our DAR was Gary Meuer from Tullahoma
area. Great guy!
Almost a bit of a let down after working so hard to accomplish this huge
We also got our repairman certificate a few days later. The
Nashville FSDO was really great to work with. Turned out to be a
nonevent with just paperwork to fill out.
The question is whether it would be okay to remove the metal beneath the
purple line on the fuselage frame shown. The line is drawn to provide 2D edge
This would be advantageous because it would allow the J stiffeners to be
back riveted to the skins before installing the skins on the frames. I think
this would be significantly easier and reduce the amount of time my bucking
partner (wife) has to spend in the aft fuselage!
(Update:) Van's approved this mod with the two letter response "ok".
Gotta love Ken Scott.
Manual elevator trim - what does this part do?
I was trying to find the source of a little noise when moving the
elevator during preflight, and when inspecting the the manual elevator trim
cable, I noticed that the rubber end on the metal sleeve (toward the left side
of the photo) is starting to disintegrate. (This doesn't seem to be the source
of the noise, but the sleeve caught my attention.)
The whole sleeve can be turned (and slid a little, IIRC). The rod
attachment to the trim tab is itself secure, and I haven't had any issues with
trim while flying.
What is the function of this sleeve, and should it move as I've
A note from a VAF reader (Tim Bennett) about his late son Phillip:
Sorry about the downtime yesterday....
The ISP had "an influx in traffic causing latency" - what they called it.
VAF was un-reachable for about 1.5 hrs total, spaced over roughly 3 hrs
yesterday afternoon. The VAF servers were never down, just the connection
somewhere between them and the outside world was constipated. They put a
man on it...hopefully with a bat.
the Dark...Paul Dye There is no doubt that an engine-out in a single at night is
objectively more dangerous than in the daylight. Unless you happen to be on top
of a lighted airport, knowing what you are going to find when you meet the earth
is a bit of a dice roll. Synthetic Vision is a big help in keeping you out of
the big rocks of course, but wouldn’t it be nice to actually SEE a mountain
clearing, a large field, or a country road? How about if you pick out a nice
unlighted runway shown on your EFIS – but it happens to be a night-time party
spot for deer or wild horses? They aren’t going to show up in the computer
models! What you need is a way to see in the dark…
I have been flying recently with just such a way – a FLIR pod (Forward
Looking InfraRed) that is offered by Grand Rapids Technology, with the video
displayed on the Hx (and now Hxr) screen with flight data overlaid. It looks for
all the world like what you might see on a Predator video on the evening news.
The Pod mounts to an inspection cover under the wing of the RV, and adds no
noticeable drag or yaw moment. The wiring is simple, and a little video
converter turns the composite video into a USB data stream that feeds into the
GRT EFIS. GRT is needing to do some tweaks right now to the video interface
because the folks that build the converter changes something, which means GRT
needs to do some re-coding….so they told me to say that they can’t fill orders
for it immediately – but they are hoping to make it a priority. They’ve actually
had the FLIR pod for a couple of years, pretty much as long as the Hx has been
around, and had video capability….they just haven’t been marketing it much. I,
for one, think they should!
Need Advice -- Drilled into spar
Need some help. While match drilling the root rib to the tank baffle, my
drill stop slipped and I drilled into the spar a good 1/16" (see picture - a
little hard to see, but follow the arrow).
Besides drop kicking myself into the next county for letting this happen,
any ideas how I can salvage this?
TeenFlight has been working since October on the avionics and the engine.
After prepping the engine on a seperate bench, and after installing the avionics
in the panel and tailcone (not to mention the various firewall sensors, oil
cooler, oil tank, etc...), we hung the engine on the airframe Saturday. The
plane is coming along. Next steps include the propeller/spinner, exhaust system,
and cowl fitment. Shout-Out
Rockwood Shepard was in Denver this morning and very kindly drove up to
my hangar at Longmont, LMO, to deliver my new engine. This was one of two he'd
found. He's using his on his RV-9A, which is several years ahead of my RV-3B.
developments! ...BSwayze Wow! How about this! My baby is growing up. She now has legs and is
on her own gear.
Partain Trading Company
...note from Tony
(RV kit shipper) Hello Everyone
I feel the need to address a couple of issues that have arisen
out of the accident with a carrier that had the load of aircraft
Partain Trading Company has been in business for 19 years and in
this time period we have moved over 20,000 shipments with an
estimated 45,000,000 load miles and in this time period there
have been TWO accidents involving carriers. One in 1998
involving a load of produce and the recent one involving a load
of aircraft. The produce load was settled in 45 days. Typical of
In regards to shipment of aircraft. We have the proper insurance
documentation in place. The insurance agent provided us with a
certificate stating the carrier had broad form cargo coverage
with Partain Trading Company Inc named as additional insured.
The problem is that the insurance agent provided the carrier
with insurance that DID NOT cover airplanes but provided Partain
Trading Company documentation that DID cover aircraft. We have a
legally binding documentation with the insurance agent. The
insurance carrier refused the claim because the agent wrote a
policy that did not cover aircraft. But since the insurance
agent made a mistake on the insurance certificate issued to
Partain Trading Company the Errors and Omissions coverage from
the agent pays the claim. I know that one of the customers has
settled. I have spoken with the claims adjuster and they have
sent out the release forms to the other two on the load will be
sending the pay offs out this week or next.
In the 19 years we have been in business this is the first time
this has happened. If you are going to ship anything make sure
that you have an Accord Certificate from the insurance agent and
check it over, failure to do so can cost you the price of the
cargo if anything happens. As a policy we required that all
carriers name us as additional insured to maintain coverage for
We have a very good contingent of carriers that have provided
great service over the years. Some we have been doing business
with since 1994. Some as big as 400 trucks. Some that are
specialized aircraft haulers. The majority of our customers have
been very satisfied with our service over the years and with
over 20,000 shipment there will be a few that are not happy. For
those that were not satisfied for whatever reason sorry it
didn't work out to your expectations. For the satisfied
customers Thank you for your business.
I also want to address one more item. It’s been said that we
don’t have insurance. That is incorrect. We are named as
additional insured on the policy of EVERY carrier that we use to
ship aircraft. Insurance is in place to cover your shipment.
The big picture is that we are here to fight another day. Mike
Cobb who was kill in the accident is not. Life can be too short
so keep your eye on the ball and what really matters. Live life
as if was your last day. Try to be considerate. Take care of
your family and yourself.
Build well and fly safe.
Partain Trading Company
AeroExpo UK 2013 ...sent to me by Peter Pengilly (#4 in the middle of the
10, 2012 Good Monday morning. Donations have been
updated, and my heartfelt thanks goes out to those regular
readers who help
our family keep this website afloat. This is the second of three
planned top-of-site announcements regarding donations during the
December pledge drive (I don't send emails or mail anything). Some of the notes our family have
received...well...we're keeping them forever. Thanks again to
those who help out.
The EAA has pushed out a new page listing instructors by state and
aircraft that have obtained a LODA (Letter of Deviation
These instructors are authorized to offer transition training for hire in
Panel Ripping Time!...Brantel
Spent a couple hours tonight starting the ripping out of the old
First step, removed everything from the interior that is not nailed down
I ran my install with Don at AFB, the fuel line that runs from the fuel
control to the purger valve then the spider runs up between the
1 and 3 cylinders. I had to get a new hose but the flow now goes
from the fuel control to the flow meter which is suspended with
cushion clamps on my engine mount tubes (RV-8A so there a lot of
them. Then this connects to the line to the spider. Don really
likes the flow meter to be in this line, not before the engine
pump or fuel control but many have installed the flow meter on
the firewall and other such places. This is what I did.
I passed the AW the other day and hope to fly when the weather gets
better maybe next week.
This will be wrapped in fire sleeve as well
Yesterday I got my special issuance Third Class from the FAA after having
double bypass surgery in April 2011. I had let my previous
certificate lapse prior to needing surgery. I was kind of
waiting until the ruling was back concerning the Third Class
exemption that the EAA and AOPA was working with the FAA on but
I feel the plane will be ready to fly before then so I put the
plan in motion back in August to get my medical certificate. I
thought I would have the plane flying by now but reading the
Travels of Vlad, I decided I really needed the plane to be
painted first before the airworthiness inspection so thats what
I'm trying to do now. Hopefully I will have that first flight
before I have to renew my medical in September.
RV-9A - finishing tasks
switching over to painting - so no fly in 2012
Dealer as a Paint Booth ...douglassmt
I found a great solution, but not sure how many like it there are out
there. The largest Recreational Vehicle dealer in town has a 50'
state-of-the-art paint booth and had just recently painted an RV-9A for the
owner's father. The store owner is also an avid pilot but not a builder or
experimental guy. Anyway, after talking to several auto shops in town (2 of
which had done planes and were willing to do mine), I ran into the RV shop
painter and he said they might be able to fit me in. Long story short, they did
a great job, half the price or less of what I'm reading people are spending to
paint their -10s (they let me provide the grunt labor, of which there is a LOT),
and we painted most of it between Thursday night and Sunday night. We finished a
few of the misc pieces within a week. Bottom line, I got a professional paint
job with top quality paint for just under $5000 and I got it done within about a
10 day period...couldn't be happier.
Hopefully I don't win a prize for dumbest first post ever, but here
Painting Outside ...Wesael
I have painted several auto's and about 4 airplanes and hated the work on
every one of them.
Having said that I don't really see any other way to get the results I
The -10 was painted outside with no paint booth and into the night
holding a light.......
The idea was to prep in the evening with the night temperature in the low
40's and then start painting first thing in the morning before
the bugs start moving and without a paint booth if we mest up 1
coat we could probably sand that back off and redo it in way
less time that we could build a paint booth so we took the
It worked fairly well but due to some of the coats having to be applied
in specific time frames from each other we ran into the night
I think we only had to redo about 2 different coats.
It is real simplel ...to get the canopy gas strut nuts onto
the aft gas strut flush screws (Bill R.)
Four RVs in various states of completion at theVanCave.
(click to enlarge)
Here's Rob Reece working on his RV-8QB wingtip.
workbench is part
of the bowling alley he grew
up going to in San Angelo, TX.Top that! dr
Various pics and discussion from the 'Who Painted Your Aircraft' thread:
Wing Kit Awesome!
There's an advantage to living close to Van's. No crating and no shipping
of wing kit required to take delivery.
With the help of fellow RV-8er Randy I got the wing kit home this afternoon.
I'm currently taking inventory but very happy with what I see so far.
Here are a few of the highlights.
Oxygen system - Make your own. ...RickWoodall
I decided I wanted an o2 system after enjoying flying high and crossing
the the US and Canada. Looked into buying a ready to go one and
found it a nightmare, even just getting it refilled in Canada is
a battle if they know its for aviation.
SO, figured I would make my own and learn how to not only build one but
also be set up to get cheap refills and not have to get into the
certifying the tank etc costs.
Here is what I got and the costs. I am 100% happy but am certainly open
to ideas or improvements.
Dialysis help ...with an RV-10 (Wesael) We had a reunion over Thanksgiving weekend and one of the
family is on a dialysis machine for 2 hrs every day.
The family member is from Kokomo, IN and the reunion was in TN.
On Saturday afternoon he tried 2 times to hook up the machine and both
attempts failed. This was the last of the disposable paraphanelia used
to hook it all up and the only option was to head home.
I offered to take him back with the machine on Sunday morning so that he
would be able to stay and and at least take in Saturday evening.
He jumped on my offer like a Hobo on a hotdog.
My friend Randy's newly painted 'old school' OD green
Bringing a 'vintage' RV-6 back to awesomeness....with a vintage feel.
The RV-1 seat. What it was, what it became, what it is now. ...factory
FB page. By Richard VanGrunsven.
OK, it’s past time for my side of the story. The cockpit ambiance of the
RV-1 has taken bad press over the past couple of months. When I was 6’1” and
about 175 lbs., I flew the RV-1 for hundreds of hours, including many three hour
flights. I don’t recall it as terribly cramped or uncomfortable. But as
different pilots flew the restored airplane, I began hearing things like
“extremely uncomfortable,” “good for 15 minute flights at best,” “no one over
5’7” need apply,” etc.
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it with you."
Rock solid panel...bentlage
I have over 200 hours on our -7 and the panel has performed flawlessly.
I'm a retired Naval Aviator and have never enjoyed avionics with this much
capability, thanks Advanced Flight Systems and Garmin.
I am trying to verify the installation of my propeller. The Hartzell
documentation shows two examples - R flange and F flange. Trying to correlate
that to the prop itself and the flywheel there are some differences. On my
flywheel there are two NON-protruding sockets - leading me to believe this is a
R flange. But on my prop there is only 1 hole that is not countersunk.
So other the obvious alignment of having the non-countersunk hole line up
with one of the non-protruding sockets, is there any other orientation to take
into account? Does it matter which non-protruding socket to use?
RV-4 to Hoquiam ...10min
video if you just want to fly along while at work.
Uh oh! Fuselage crossmembers! Scrap?
Here are the crossmembers I dimpled instead of countersunk. According to
Van's, the instructions call for countersinking because the
material is too think to be easily dimpled by hand. With a
pneumatic, it was a piece of cake!