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Hump Day, Feb 29, 2012.  1210z

First Flight: RV-10 N242BD

   N242BD had a successful first flight this morning, launching at first light on a cold (13F), beautiful Montana morning. Flight went well, a few minor squawks. Engine ran great, no high temps probably thanks to the cold ambient OAT and the oil cooler valve. Thanks to all who have helped, I'll be making sure to thank you personally. Wow, what an airplane - thanks to Van's for such a great product.
I started July 1, 2009, Serial Number 40084. I'll get pictures up sometime soon.
Bryan Douglass (douglassmt)
Missoula, MT   RV-10   In Phase 1!

Wing J-Stringers centerline

Got just up to installing the W-926A/B j stringers in my wing today. I drew the center line as per the plans (3/8" from unbent end). When I install it in the wing the line is too high and I cannot lower it any more since it is hitting the ribs. Seems like I could just install the j-stringers touching the ribs and not need the line. What have other people done?

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
So tomorrow is the big day (conditional inspection) ...tkatc

So tomorrow is the big inspection day. My A&P suggested I have everything opened up for him and ready for inspection. He also relieved my fears when he said he would sign it off pending a satifactory inspection but I could assemble everything at my leisure.  continue / pictures

My mobile A&P arrived as promised ...many pictures

My "Hungry for free lunch" cousin took a great deal of pleasure eveyr time the A&P found a minor discrepency...

Great hanger lighting for only 1.8 RV Units

Like most of you who rent or lease your hanger, I also had terrible lighting in my hanger. I am at least lucky enough to have one 120v outlet and one light bulb socket on the ceiling. So for years I've had to get out the light stands and move them around the airplane to where I'm working. I finally had enough, but being a tenant it's frowned upon to start running conduits and taping into the hanger electrical system for permanent fixtures.  continue

Totally Off Topic


Tue, Feb 28, 2012.  1227z

Wet Summer Wing-Fit ...Loman O'Byrne RV-9 (Dublin, Ireland)

I live in a terrace of brick houses in an inner suburb of Dublin. My shop is very small so fitting the wings had to happen outside. Trouble is, the shop is tiny because the back garden (yard) is also tiny. Not to worry, the builder obviously had the dimensions of a Vans RV-9 in mind when he laid out these houses in 1902.  continue

Elevator Leading Edge ...good enough? (asks the builder)

How Far Can Your RV Glide ...Rob 'Smokey' Ray

...how far can you glide? Have you practiced power off glides? In the F-16 we practiced glide approaches as a matter of currency, mandatory. It became almost mundane and when it really happened to me, the glide approach and landing wasn't too surprising (despite being on fire ). In my RVX I routinely set a hard altitude when coming home and reduce the power to idle at set distances to observe glide capabilities at different airspeeds. I have done this in my C/S HR2, my RV4 and many other RV's I fly on pre-buy inspections as part of my report.

Results? 87 KIAS in my RVX produces the best glide ratio producing a 10 mile glide to straight-in approach from 10 miles distant at 5K altitude, no wind...  continue

I took an oil bath today -( doing acro. Need advice

Ok that's a bit of an exaggeration but my plane is a mess. I knew it was coming but not this bad.

I want to compete in Sportsman this year which is a move up from Primary last year. The two new manoueuvres for me are the 1/2 reverse Cuban and the hammerhead turn.

I have inverted fuel but only a dumb, cheap air/oil separator from Aircraft Spruce. For weeks I've been reading threads on different air/oil separators, 1/2 Raven systems, accusumps, Christen inverted systems and now I'm all disoriented, no pun intended.

To do the 1/2 Cuban I pull to 45, do a quick 2 count, roll inverted, push and count 3 before pulling to finish the maneuver. Oil pressure is normally in the 55 psi. range and drops to mid 30's during the inverted segment. It recovers as soon as positive G is applied. I don't think this is harming the engine one bit.

I typically keep my oil level at 5 quarts, I guess I lost a good 3/4 quart today in a 20 min. practice session.  continue

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Bent Push Rod

I pulled the cowling today after an hour flight to do an oil change and while waiting on the oil to drain, I inspected the FWF. This is what I found:  more pics

(Walt - A&P)  A stuck valve is definitely the most likely cause of the bent pushrod/pushrod tube. I'd be surprised if you didn't notice some rough running (morning sickness) symptoms.

Wheel Pant Got The Shakes?

Worth a little wiggle after each flight.  Someday you might find a bolt has worked its way out.  Found this yesterday before a quick .2hr lunch flight - luckily Monk had the right bolt at his shop and I was good to go in a bit. 

Event News
RV-1 Escort Needed – DFW to Alabama – 10/11 March

An invitation from Purdue University to VAF.

Do it yourself lettering....

From RV Builder Will Carlton ...while in Haiti

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
v1.0.3 of iFlightPlanner for iPad out.

...an integrated extension of iFlightPlanner.com and mobile.iFlightPlanner.com that allows pilots to download flights planned at iFlightPlanner.com into an iPad for reference in-flight.  http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/iflightplanner/id491618841?mt=8

Totally Off Topic

Mon, Feb 27, 2012.  1228z

  Good morning!  Saturday carried my first passenger in two months - and it was one of my favorite ones (son).  He forgot and wore 100% polyester pants (no go item).  No worries, the nomex suit is left in the plane and I was wearing jeans and a long sleeve cotton shirt.  It was a little loose, but it made for a cute picture, which is now my phone wallpaper (below).  The kid can fly.  Holds altitude and spots traffic before me.  He logged .4hrs stick time out of a .5hr flight - I took off and landed.  A good Saturday morning for any 11yr old kid....me thinks.
  Sunday was breezy, so it revolved around getting the motorcycle ready for Texas' 9-month riding season (79*F here a few days back).  Oil change, new filter, new battery and tires pumped to 2.2 and 2.5 bar.  It gets ~45mpg.  $50 to fill up my tiny Ford Ranger Saturday using cheapest gas they had (and the supermarket's 3¢ discount).  The cycle reduces my roundtrip cost to the airport from nearly $6 to a little over $2, and mixed with grocery store, post office and a thousand other daily errands saves me over $75/month in car gas.  Worded another way it pays for 2½ months of hangar rent even taking into account insurance and registration.  No rain, daytime only and back roads.  Day-Glo yellow armored jacket and all the other stuff that sets a guy apart from the the squids.
  Welcome back good weather!  Time to ride and fly!  Hope you have great Monday.  dr

Tate 'T8' Reeves ....like a Boss.

First flight N722DW ...Doug Weiler RV-7

Well after 4 1/5 years and 2500+ hours, I made the first flight on my new RV-7 last Friday out of Lake Elmo, MN.

Weather was a little marginal in the morning with snow showers floating around so we waited until about noon. Still a little gusty with about 15-20 knots down the runway. This made for a VERY short takeoff roll (like less than 4 seconds). Horsepower and a Hartzell prop can't be beat. Chase plane flown by Tom Berge and photos by Peter Fruehling.

This is my second (and last!) project after finishing an RV-4 in 2003 (now N160NS and living near Baltimore). Details of 722DW:  (continuevideo


RV-1 Webinar Tomorrow Night


Canopy Trim Tip

I made a plywood template and used 3M spray adhesive to stick it to the frame. Best fit the canopy to the frame and slid it .030-.050 forward of the template. Clamped it all down and used a belt sander to take the canopy edge down to the template. Worked very well and gave me a nice clean cut.

Some more RV-3 progress ...Andy Hill

Going For A Ride 3 video ...Bruce Raymond

Here is a link to my latest in the 'Going For A Ride' video series. Thanks to Mike 'Chef' Regen, for supplying some of the footage. The Tangier Island, VA Holly Run has been a tradition for over 40 years. The weather was perfect this year. Watch it in HD 1080 if you can.


RV-1- Back Out of Phase 1 – 47 Years Later! ...Paul

Well, it wasn’t forty hours, but with the help of many RV’ers (Roy Geer in particular for taking the time to fly over three hours last week), the RV-1 is once again free to roam the skies at will! With 6.2 hours on the clock since re-licensing, I signed the logbook today, putting the airplane in Phase 2 and making it ready for it’s national tour. Roy is now the current “high time” RV-1 pilot of the modern age – only 2.6 of those hours are mine. We finished up the test period with some cruise performance around the northwest side of Fort Worth on Saturday, determining that at 2350 RPM it will burn about 5 gph and do about 135 mph. Although I am sure it will go faster, it seems to like that speed, and anything that is that old deserves to be comfortable.

Next weekend is the “coming out” party at Hicks Airfield (T67) and I hope a lot of folks can make it to try it on for size (who knows, we might be recruiting pilots!) and see it fly – if the weather permits. Immediately after the event, it will be heading to the GLO Custom, the paint shop at Northwest Regional, for touch-up work and the addition of a new Comm radio and ELT (required for the Canadian portion of the tour). If all goes well, it will be headed east to begin the tour sometime around the 10th of March.

It was really amazing to sit in that cockpit, droning along over the plains of Texas, a Sectional in my lap and roads spread out below. It’s a whole different kind of RV’iating- one that we hope that everyone will be able to participate in through the tour visits, SPOT tracking, and reports from the pilots. It was just about four and a half years ago when I first saw the RV-1, and the dream began. Now, through the participation of many in the community, the dream has taken wing. It should be a great summer!

related: RV-1 Fly-In / Party details

Engine Start ...Bill Pendergrass

Partial RV Grin Today. Everything went OK. No Leaks. Either firewall forward or in the pilots seat! <g>

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
From the factory FB page...

Petco aquarium pump Pirep..-)

As some of you know I made a engine dehumidifier from two columns of coloured silica gel deissicant (Harbor Freight), a length of ABS pipe and a Petco aquarium pump..9902 I think is the model number... Its for a 60 gallon aquarium.

I have been running this pump for about 3 years and have been very happy with it. It has far more air output than the little tetris pumps.

Well the last couple of months I noticed the dessicant was lasting much longer before changing colour, I pulled the tube off the breather yesterday and found the flow had gone to almost zero.

That pump was a whole 15 bucks so feeling totally cheated I took the pump apart and found there are actually two pumps in one.. The diaprham had ruptured on the side I was using.  continue

Totally Off Topic

Fri, Feb 24, 2012.  1228z

  The Daytona 500 is this weekend.  NASCAR season is back.  That doesn't mean much to me, but it means the WORLD to my Mom, who celebrated her birthday this week.  She says it's nice that they give her this present each year.  This year she's enjoying it in HD and with a DVR (present from her kids).  She's a 'Little E' fan, so root accordingly.  Her baby boy turned into a Formula 1 snob, so he's looking forward to March 18th.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!  dr

Winter in Austria

The trip that almost was ...Brian Chesteen

For months my wife has been training for her third half marathon to be ran at Disney World this weekend. That being said for months I have been eagerly anticipating the opportunity to get to fly us down in the RV.

For the past week I have been painfully scanning all the available weather information that would impact our decision to fly or drive. I absolutely hate driving these days and looking at a 11+ hour drive ahead of me when a 3hr flight would do it, is not my idea of fun.

For the last 24hrs my wife has been hounding me to tell her the decision...fly or drive.  continue

Want a Job Working for RV-8/3 Builder (and my friend) Randy Lervold?

...looking for R&D Technician.  And congrats to RV-3 builder Katie Bosman.

VAF Family
Rest in Peace: Michael DeMuth of Aymar-DeMuth Props

Michael John DeMuth, 63, of Old Whitmire Highway, Newberry, SC, formerly of Ellicott City, MD, died Friday, February 3, 2012 at his residence. He was born December 22, 1948 in Baltimore City, MD a son of Albert and Jean Jacobi DeMuth. Mike was the owner of Aymar-DeMuth Propellers and spent more than 25 years crafting airplane propellers that have been shipped all over the world. He was also a Journeyman Machinist who worked at General Electric, Westinghouse, and in the Applied Physics Lab at Johns Hopkins University where he was part of the team that built one of the first satellites to be launched into space from the spaceship. Mike was an extremely talented man but a man, who despite all of these gifts remained very humble.

In addition to his parents of Ellicott City, MD, he is survived by his brothers, Paul DeMuth of Ellicott City, MD and Donald (Nancy) DeMuth of Irmo, SC; sister, Carol (Larry) Gray of Union Bridge, MD; nieces, Laura, Virginia, Jami, and Jessi; a great-niece and a two great-nephews.


from eaa...


from aopa...


Totally Off Topic

Thu, Feb 23, 2012.  1242z

My Son's 1st Flight ...Scott Farnsworth

I've been waiting a long time for this flight.

We had a great time. Now he keeps asking how he can earn another flight. I think chores and homework time just got a little easier for Mom and Dad.  (video)

RV Grin ...Mitch Velickovich

Just landed in KLKR after flying our RV6A for the very first time ever and I finally get the RV Grin! Congrats to you all...what a great aircraft it is! Easy to fly, docile, responsive and FAST, I am Extremelly impressed...

"Patience" Makes It To KFFA ...Jeff Moreau

It was a beautiful day today in Southeastern VA. My home base (KCPK) is a very short hop (50 Nautical Miles) to KFFA.

I read this thread this morning when I got up and decided it was time to go see an old friend who lives minutes away from First Flight Airport. I considered it a bonus to be able to grab a shot of my RV-8A with the Wright Brothers monument in the background.

I couldn't help but to think about what took place here and how far we've come since then. I would like to think that the brothers must be overhead looking down on my machine and hopefully they were impressed. Imagine if you were able to give Orville and Wilbur a tour of your machine. They would probably think that you had flown in from another planet. Here is the beauty shot. A beautiful monument and nice museum. I hope you have the opportunity to visit with your machine soon.

Productivity at Work

A little preliminary paint scheme layout during lunch today...

● 'NovaBandit' in the RV-10 Forum ...Ed Kranz of MN.

Hold Short for RV ...Bruce Sacks

Here is a picture from Monday's flight into Savannah International. Me and the boy took advantage of the beautiful weather and visited the historic area for a seafood lunch.



Totally Off Topic

Ash Wednesday, Feb 22, 2012.  1228z

Danny King's new r/c plane
....modeled after his RV-8
...modeled after a WWII P-51.

Jarhead Flies the RV-1 Prototype

related: Track the RV-1

VAF Family
Attn VAF Folks Who Are Vets

RV-6A Owner Tim Verroi is Starting a Side Business ...and is looking for input (there is a 'Contact' link on his site)

related: His Blog: http://familysurvivalblog.us/

Dealing with Fuel Tank Leaks

I hope this post may be of use to those out there struggling like I am with a leaky fuel tank. I have a few pics and videos to show concerning my process along with a question concerning something I found in my fuel tank that I would like to understand.

I have been fighting fumes in the cockpit pretty much since my first flight. I have approximately 150 hours on my 9A now. I have always had a distinct smell of fuel whenever I would initially open the canopy prior to flight. The fumes have always dissipated on the ground once the engine was started. I attributed this to the air movement through the cockpit once the prop was spinning. I have never smelled fuel at any time during flight, only on the ground prior to engine start. Up until just a couple of months ago I had never seen any visual indications of a fuel leak, only a smell of fuel when I initially opened the canopy. However, back in November after fueling up one day I knelt down to take a look underneath the wing to see if there was any indication of fuel anywhere. There it was. There was a line of blue dye along the trailing edge of the fuel tank running from the fuselage outboard to the first inspection plate.  continue

Fuel leak... What do you think of this cap-

Just did a quick flight were - a couple minutes after refueling and takeoff - I could see fuel coming out from the left fuel tank cap not a great sight.  continue

Synthetic Approach to Your Backyard Strip

(Carlos at GRT) From time to time customers ask about the synthetic approach capability in the GRT Avionics Sport and Horizon EFIS (all models). How does it work, are public and/or private airports supported, etc. The one question that we have not been able to answer positively til now was, "Can I fly a synthetic approach to my backyard strip?" The answer now, is, yes, you can.  more

From the AF-5000
(from Rob Hickman - AFS) This is an extremely useful feature in VFR weather, it helps you visualize the correct runway and act as a double check. For example KSLE has runways 34 and 31 that are very close. When I get cleared for the runway I select it in the Flight plan and it displays the HITS boxes and the runway lead in arrow on the map.

It is not meant to fly an IFR approach into an airport without one.  more

Totally Off Topic

Like a Boss.

Tue, Feb 21, 2012.  1221z

At KFFA ...Vlad's 9A

RV-1 Flight PIREP (Paul Dye)

Sorry to be so late to the thread folks - and thanks for all the well-wishes, on behalf of the ENTIRE team that has worked to get us to this point. Louise and I just got back from Fort Worth - we stayed over to work with a number of folks on this and other projects, and were hoping to fly the RV-1 again today. Unfortunately, by the time the ceilings had lifted, the winds had picked up something fierce - even getting the -3 into Hicks was a challenge.

Below is an excerpt from the post-flight report I just wrote. the airplane really does fly like an RV, it's just not as light on the controls as what we are all used to in the modern airplanes. Above all, however, it is honest. What else but honesty would you expect from Van?

Thanks again for everyone that has helped to this point, and for everyone that will be helping out from now until the tour is over. It will take a whole lot of people spread around the continent to pull this off, but I have confidence in the RV community. Look for a chance to help out when the RV-1 comes near you!

Flight Report

Taxi and take-off were normal for a tail dragger. The brakes are definitely sensitive, but once the pilot calibrates themselves, it should not be a problem – they need to be very careful the first time they are applied however. Lateral stability on the ground is not as positive as most RV’s – once the tail starts to swing, it feels like it would have a tendency to go around – more like a normal tail dragger than the very stable RV’s. The tail wheel is very firm, and sends considerable feedback through the airframe when hitting bumps – pilots should be aware – no damage appears to be done by this.

Take-off was normal for an RV- tail came up in about 100- 1500 feet of roll, acceleration was good, and control at lift-off was positive. Speeds weren’t recorded on this flight, as we really don’t know how accurate any of the instruments are. The initial rate of climb was quite good – about what we would expect for the horsepower. The airplane felt well-trimmed with the tab in a neutral position, and pitch forces were normal.

The airplane was climbed to 3,000’ over the field (field elevation approximately 850’), and several orbits were performed to evaluate handling. In typical RV fashion, roll and pitch are harmonious, and the rudder is fairly heavy at normal flight speeds. Roll and pitch are sluggish compare to a modern RV, but perfectly adequate and not out of the ordinary for production aircraft. Comparing it to modern RV’s, the controls are more like an RV-8 than an RV-4 – good, but not at all light. Trim is quick, but the range is not great. Turns to both left and right were performed, and stability seems strong in all axes.  continue

In The Shop....

VAF Family
Hat Sighting ...Pima Air Museum

This is why I built an RV

After over seven years of building, My wife and I flew the RV-9A on our first short trip. We flew to Oklahoma to visit my son and his wife. It is a four hour drive in the car but only an hour and fifteen minutes in the plane. Believe me there were times when I never thought I'd finish and almost sold the project once, but I am sooo glad I didn't give up. I need to thank Jay Pratt for helping me make this a reality. At the end of the project I was so busy at my business that I had almost no time to work on the plane. Jay helped me with all the small details to make the project a flying airplane. Another benefit of having my plane at Jay's hangar was being able to see other RV's to see how details were done on different planes. I know it's a worn out saying but
Jim Wright
RV-9A N9JW 90919

● Engine Start!

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

Totally Off Topic

Across the street from where I was eating breakfast yesterday.  Carbeque.  I called 911 (was second caller).  Loud popping sounds as small things exploded (no idea what).  Coulda been ammo.

While this all happening, folks were still driving in, getting out of their cars, and walking past it to go order their McBreakfast.  Flames were fifteen feet tall about a minute later.  dr

Mon, Feb 20, 2012.  1205z

The RV-1 Prototype Flies Again! ...several pictures.


"It flies just like an RV-1" ......Paul Dye

Video ...Mike Reddick



Flew N6371S “Little Pill” yesterday on its maiden flight. Flight duration 20 minutes. No negative surprises but a couple of positive ones. Trimmability excellent in that aircraft flew hands off once trimmed. Very sensitive in roll (as compared to my Steen Skybolt) and predictable in pitch. Trim ball stays centered at cruise speed. Cylinder head temps were right where they should be although I would have expected them to be in the higher range due to the fact that the engine is new. I’ll take good fortune wherever I can get it. Stalls are predictable with slight airframe shake prior to the break. Only 39.7 more hours to go.

Putting top cowl back after

After cutting the top cowl on my Rocket, app .5 inches, I find that I need to put it back!! Maybe my Rocket is fat??? Started this process by sanding the back inside with 80 grit and tapering the inside edge a bit. Laid the first layup on the inside and seems to have set nice and clean. Want to know if the FG Experts have any words of wisdom as to how to complete this task and end up with something near what I had??? Plan to re-cut on the proper line after getting the build up back on....   more

DanH Reply....

In The Shop....
Wing Painting Stand ...several photos

Totally Off Topic

Fri, Feb 17, 2012.  1238z
Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!  dr

N541RV ...Bob Newman

"8 yrs later.... 40176 has been transformed into a flying machine."

Note: Bob runs www.tcwtech.com, an advertiser here on VAF.
He is RNewman in the VAF forums.

Alton Bay (B18) is open! ...land on water without floats.

New Advertiser: Bonehead Composites

(from Chris)
   I'm entering a new market! After more than 16 years in the Composite industry Bonehead Composites is now offering a new product line to the Van's aircraft community! Having recently completed my RV 7A full of custom carbon fiber parts, I've decided to make some my custom items available for purchase. After so many years of manufacturing skydiving helmets and other carbon fiber products I am excited to branch out into a market that caters to my first love, the love of flying.
   I take great pride in everything I design and manufacture from the early stages of CAD design, to rapid prototyping and finally to testing and production, and best of all, everything is made in the U.S.A. Our aviation product line will continue to grow over the coming months and I urge you all to visit www.boneheadcomposites.com and check out what's currently offered. If you don’t see exactly what you’re looking for I'm always open to new ideas to keep me busy developing whatever the RV builder wants and needs.
   Having built a 7A, some parts are specific to that model, but many times are shared between various models. Current products included; FLIR camera housing, NACA air scoops, throttle quadrant and center tunnel to firewall, fire extinguisher/ armrest combo, floor boards, panel blanks, wing tips, cup holders, and our most recent "D" size oxygen bottle mount. With today’s latest cutting edge design and rapid prototyping technology the possibilities are endless!

Chris Frisella

Some of what's available now...

In the works...

The owner of Bonehead Composites is Cfrisella (in the forums)

Lazarus update (sloshed tank)

You may remember the RV 9A that was on the chopping block a short time ago with the grinded spar. Well, after a long debate it was decided that the kit was salvageable.    more


Totally Off Topic

Thu, Feb 16, 2012.  1229z

Movable Cowl Flaps for the RV-10 ...Nick Nafsinger

A few of you have inquired about my cowl flaps. I thought it best to start a new thread, so here we are!

Background: As we all know, the 10 has had a problem with cooling. The solution for almost everyone was to add Louvers. The idea of Louvers isn't a bad one, but I thought I would try something different. The problem with Louvers (IMO) is they work great for cooling in climb, but in cruise when you don't need the extra cooling they are still there dumping air (drag) in all phases of flight.  continue

(8) Pictures and video...

related: Link to video of them working in thread

RV-1 Prototype – Details, Details… Help Wanted! ...Paul

OK folks – we have had tremendous support from builders in the DFW area, many of them working multiple weekends on the RV-1 in the past couple of months. Last weekend saw the relicensing inspection, and technically the airplane is ready to go…but because of the winds, we delayed the first flight, and during taxi testing we discovered a couple of things we wanted to make better before committing this historic airplane to flight.

We now have a new throttle cable on order, shims for the axle hopefully coming in from Grove, and a new battery on the way. All of these items should be arriving at RV Central (map) by Friday, and if the weather cooperates, we could be looking at a flight if we can get everything installed. I believe I heard that Jay is going to be out of town, so I’m looking for folks who can volunteer to help with these final installation items (Friday and/or Saturday if required) to see if we can get to the end. The battery should be easy, the Throttle cable may need some bracketry built ,and the shims just mean we have to pull a wheel, brake, and axle.

Of course, the parts need to arrive before they can be installed, but if anyone thinks that can make another effort, let us know, we’ll stay in touch, and hopefully get it done.

Typical RV building – a few little things can hold up the first flight, but they’ve gotta’ be right! The schedule is tight to get it flying and to the paint shop before we need to be thinking of getting it to Florida.

In The Shop....
Tape ...Rick Galati

...I am by no means a fiberglass guru and working with fiberglass is an art I do not consider myself particularily skilled or knowledgeable about. For the purposes of fashioning the windscreen fairing, I'm not sure how the experts go about defining what fiberglass material is "best." There may be any number of acceptable materials and ways to fashion a windscreen. Since no one has responded to your query, I'll hazard the following. For both my projects I used fiberglass tape exclusively. I believe I learned about tape from one of George Orndorff's early construction videos. It's 3" width seems about right and by slightly offsetting each run, a four-ply layup works for me. A description and source for fiberglass tape is found here...  more

Vision Microsystems VM1000 & EPI-800- How to aviod the "MPT Blues" ...Reggie

This is the 2nd in a series of posts (Part 1) on the Vision Microsystems EPI-800 & VM1000 Engine Management Systems. As a reminder, I’m not a certified avionics technician but an experimental aircraft owner & enthusiast like you. My intention with these posts is to pass along the information I’ve learned over the years to help keep your EPI-800 or VM1000 system alive & well. This writing will cover the manifold pressure transducer (MPT) “care & feeding” to help you avoid the “MPT Blues.”

The EMS receives manifold pressure (MP) data from a MPT, VMS p/n 3010015. The MPT receives 5VDC input from the VMS data processing unit (DPU) & returns a low level signal proportionate to the intake manifold pressure. The DPU processes the signal to provide a cockpit indication of MP. If properly installed & maintained, the MPT is a robust & reliable unit giving decades of trouble free service.

The MPT consists of an electrical sensing unit soldered to a PC board, this assembly is attached to a aluminum block. The 1st gen units had a tan PC board with RED-GRN-BLK-WHT wires; later units had a green PC board with 4 blade connectors. The sensing unit is a 15 psi two port differential sensor. In VMS installations, one port remains open to cabin pressure while the other is connected to a brass nipple in the mounting block, a snubber fitting to dampen pressure transients, and to the engine manifold.   continue

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
I was thinking of something ...Rick (relocate fuel valve thoughts)

...similar to Scott Stewart's there.

But instead of the extension, the entire fuel valve is bolted to the console. With using flexible lines, in the rare event needed, you should be able to disconnect the valve from the console with ease.

Totally Off Topic

OT: Pendulum Waves ...DanH sent this to me.
"...closely related to torsional mechanics, an important subject if you wish to design an engine (ed. or anything that gets turned by an engine.)


Hump Day, Feb 15, 2012.  1225z

FCC plans to suspend LightSquared's land network

(Reuters) - U.S. communications regulators dealt a severe blow on Tuesday to LightSquared's plans to establish a high-speed wireless network, proposing to withdraw authority for the land-based portion after government experts said it would interfere with the GPS system.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) said it proposed to suspend indefinitely LightSquared's authority to transition its satellite spectrum to ground-based use.  continue

Prepping for my 1st Condition Inspection ...Tony Kelly

My condition inspection is due next month. I am not the builder nor do I have an A&P rating. I want to document my progress here for any other buyer's who are experiencing this steep learning curve. I hope this will also serve to put my A&P at ease when he can see the work I've perfromed.

I will go further into my condition inspection but for now I am prepping and taking care of all the things I can BEFORE I get my A&P involved. Hopefully this will make things go a bit smoother.  continue

continue Part I  /  Part II

AFS-5600 Powered Up! ...Dwight Frye

I don't post much, but this is an exciting enough milestone that I felt compelled to share. I've waited a long time to get my avionics, and that was exciting enough. But just this weekend I powered up the AFS-5600 for the first time, which was a much anticipated milestone. It came up without a hitch.

I still have a lot of work to do before I fly, but this is another amazing bit of motivation. SteinAir did the wiring harness, and Rob tendered technical support. I took delivery of the unit back in November, and needed to update the software and charts. That was a successful operation, and I'm now running the latest and greatest code. (I'm sure it won't be the last update made before I fly, though.) Here is a picture of my work in progress. Note that the display isn't as crisp as it could be .. which isn't the fault of the EFIS, but is because I'm leaving the protective plastic on the front until closer to flying-time. <g>

In The Shop....
Connector update F-1226-L/R Drill Template ....RV-12 Skyview Conversion Kit

(Bruce Russell) Fuselage side drill template and mounting bracket for new wing connector.

Good tips. Using plastic ...Paul Killeen

...Using plastic water bottles for rivets here, even if you knock one over with the cap off most of them will stay in the bottle.

Crater Lake in June.....   Stephen

We did a fly-by last June 3rd. Really nice spot from the air but looks a bit more wintry than you might expect in June <g>.

Totally Off Topic

OT: http://youtu.be/zYPag3LuKlA ...if you like watching R/C guys struggle with crosswinds just like we do, this is your clip.  'Exciting' landings start around the 3min 30sec mark.  Rob Ray sent me this.


Valentine's Day again?  CVS candy isle here I come...

Tue, Feb 14, 2012.  1231z
  Rain and crud all day in the DFW area Monday, mixed with a little sleet early on.  No fun in Vanville.  Hats off to those living where it's colder and wetter than Texas.  Don't know how ya stand it.
  I forgot to mention this past weekend FIFI flew over the house twice at 1,000' agl.  Friday and Saturday.  It's based at Addison airport (KADS) and goes over to Alliance airport (KAFW) to do currency touch 'n gos via our house, apparently.  Saturday I heard the radial noise, raised my upstairs guest bedroom office blinds and saw the shadow go right over the dang house.  Tate and I keystone cop'd it out to the driveway in time to see it go over the trees.  Turned my little Dynon handheld over to Addison tower, but I guess they were talking to approach on a different freq.  Probably the tenth time we've seen it flying over our neighborhood.  I should probably keep a camera w/a good lens on it by the window.
  My wife and daughter think it's no big deal for the world's only flying B-29 to fly over the house...multiple times.  At least the boy gets it...  dr

●  N147BR POH (RV-4) ....309 page PDF doc that sets the bar HIGH.

- Added to POH section.

(from Mike)
   "...Lots of open source material was used, much of it from Van himself or culled from VAF.  The key to much of the number crunching was the great work that Kevin Horton and Dr. John Lowry have shared on the web that allow a history major like me to actually apply aerodynamics. 
   The standard warnings apply however:  a manual like this isn’t intended as a substitute for proper flight instruction; each of these airplanes is unique; and I’m one man deep, so there are errors that I haven’t spotted..."

Painted....Rudi Greyling's RV-10

related: The RV-10 forum

Garminites discuss instrument approach with G3X/430W/GX Pilot equipped airplane

...I'll walk you through what I do when I'm flying a G3X/430W/GX Pilot equipped aircraft on an instrument approach. The same basic series of steps applies to both ILS and GPS WAAS approaches:

  1. 1. Well outside the final approach fix, I brief the approach from my printed plate or electronic chart. At this point I enter the1 initial missed approach altitude ("climb to ___ft") in the G3X PFD's altitude preselect field, and I also use the Baro Minimums feature on the G3X PFD to dial in the DH/DA for the approach.
  2. 2. When cleared for the approach, I press the autopilot APPR softkey on the G3X PFD to arm the autopilot to capture the localizer and glideslope (for an ILS) or the GPS course and glidepath (for a WAAS LPV or LNAV+V approach). The airplane then captures the lateral and vertical guidance and flies itself down the chute.
  4. 3. Upon reaching the decision height or missed approach point, when the G3X approach minimums voice alert sounds in my headset - "minimums, minimums!" - I use the autopilot disconnect button on the stick to disengage the autopilot and take control manually. At the same time, I'm adding power and pitching the nose for climb attitude. The important thing at this stage, of course, is to get the airplane climbing away from the ground, not be pressing buttons. That's true no matter if you're using an autopilot or hand-flying.  continue

Infinity wire runs

Curious if anyone has any pics of how they ran their Infinity wires from their front and rear sticks. A pic of the wire routing for the trutrak roll servo would also be great.

[ed. Yes...]

F-1230-A Update ...RV-12

Here are the extra holes in the fuselage bulkheads for the Skyview update.  more

Need help on RV-10 spar

I have red 15 times and probably over thinking on this but. Would you explain underlined text please. If you have picture that is even better.

Page 13-3
Step 2: Machine Countersink the nutplate attach rivet holes in the flanges of the W-SPAR ASSY-L Spar Assembly-Left. Machine Countersink those rib to spar flange attach river holes that are in line with the nutplate attach rivet holes and are inboard of the most outboard fuel tank attach nutplate.

Thank you in advance.

In The Shop....
Drilling Plexiglas the Dan Horton way

...Next time you drill and deburr a hole in plexiglass, examine it with a 10x magnifier. What looks ok to the naked eye is too often a collection of stress concentrations, in particular when deburred with a cutter. ...more

[ed. Mind you this is advise coming from a used car salesman...and yes, I'm enjoying the used Ford Ranger truck I bought from him very much. <g>  dr]

Safety wire gets the bends ... Pat Hatch flap actuators

What I did was remove the jam nut after lightly scribing its outline on the end of the actuator so I would know where to center punch for the drill. I threaded the .032 safety wire through the hole and then replaced the rod end and jam nut. Also, I substituted a drilled-head bolt for a cleaner look. Here are a couple of photos...more

White on Clear Seems to work on bins

Here's a photo of the test labels that I tried. The particular labeler that I'm using lets me adjust the font and size.

I apologize for the poor photo quality, but it'll give you an idea of the readability of the various tapes. These bins don't have anything in them but with the clear tapes I can easily see inside past the lettering...

VAF Family
Update from our VAF friend Anthony Johnston (Switzerland)

"Just a short update.

In early December, I was put on a combination of morphine and cortisone which dramatically reduced the pain I was having. After this, I was put on a treatment of chemo which then had to be halted in December for me to go on a radiation therapy regime of 10 treatments. My condition during the radiation therapy improved dramatically and the pain I was experiencing in my back and sides stopped almost altogether. However the effects of the radiation therapy came on about a week after the treatment finished and these effects are really debilitating. I am slowly recovering from these effects now but it has been a struggle. I now know first hand what disabled people go through and it has been an eye opener. I start a new regime of chemo tomorrow (Valentines Day) with a new drug. I have had a portable catheter inserted surgically in my chest just under my collar bone where one of the drugs can be introduced over a period of two days. This regime of treatment is set to last until July. I am looking forward to further improvement in my condition which is very very slowly happening. Then I can get to the garage and resume building slowly at first.

I have had great support from my family and friends all around the world and that is very inspiring. The best though is Chrissie my angel of a girlfriend, who has been a rock and an anchor in helping me keep a positive attitude throughout the last three months. I would not have known what to do without her. Despite her own worries about me she has pushed and cajoled me to keep on going, to exercise, to eat and to think positive.

From time to time also, I open this post and look through all the messages from The VAF Community and it gives me a real boost to carry on with the skirmish and to Hang Tough.

I am determined to beat this thing. My attitude is very truly positive, with a few small minor dents that are banged out by the love and support I have from close family and the support and inspiration I receive from friends and The VAF Community.

I thank you all deeply from the bottom of my heart."

7,600 ...from mothership

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Brake Issues 500x5 Clevelands

During our conditional we decided to change our pads and discs on the 7a. Went with Rapco discs and used the pads we already had (not sure of brand). Put everything back together and now they drag like crazy. Checked the discs and they seem to identical to the old ones. Anyone have any idea of what could be causing this? Plane has about 800 hours.

Any ideas would be appreciated.

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
Prototype RV8 Intersection

After the success we have had with the other models ( Thanks fellow builders ) we did the obvious thing and below you can see the proto type set of RV8 intersection fairings. They have been test fitted to two different RV8's and they really fit well. Specially the two top ones were not easy to make.  continue

Totally Off Topic

You might not find this as funny as I did, but being a one-person shop,
running this website, it did speak to me


Mon, Feb 13, 2012.  1226z

N6371S "Little Pill" ...Don Stiver

My RV8 became an official flying machine today with the issuance of the airworthiness cert. It differs from the stock Vans “8” with a James Cowl, Barrett IO-390 and a MT 3-blade prop. It has all the TCW boxes, B&C stuff, dual Pmag and Electronic Ignition Commander, dual GRT HX with back up steam gages and Abby’s Flightline interior. It was painted by Scott Groves of Saltair Aircraft painting in Ormond Beach, Fl. Yes, I’ve been saving up for many years to do this project. BTW, I started on 16 January 2008 and got the DAR inspection today. As soon as the weather gets warm again it will fly...

related: panel

First -9A Solo! ...Pete Howell post.

Earlier today Mark Erickson (Panheadmark) Soloed his beautiful RV-9A out of KANE. He took off as I was coming in from Madison, and it looked great!

His plane is a real beauty and Mark is a wonderful guy to share a hangar with. Hopefully, he will share some of the details of his craftsmanship with the group.

RV Solo Grin below (picture courtesy of Bernie Weiss) ...  continue.

RV-1 Fairy Tale…

Yesterday, the RV-1 moved again under it’s own power for the first time in several years! It was a cold, blustery day in northwestern Fort Worth, with bumps and burbles in the air tumbling off of the hangars, raising havoc with airplanes trying to land on the single runway. (If you could have withstood the temperatures, it would have been quite entertaining to sit in a lawn chair and grade the various attempts at “returning safely to earth…”).

Experienced homebuilders will understand the scenario. Last week, we planned to have the Condition Inspection and a DAR visit completed this weekend. If everything worked out a hundred percent, it was not out of the realm of possibility to fly the airplane. Alas, everything worked out – except for the weather. Yet a good time was had by all, and we enjoyed the company of an EAA chapter visit on top of the usual suspects at RV Central. Finishing touches (panel labels, a few dabs of RTV) were being applied as we got back from lunch and Mel Asberry pulled out his clip-board... continue

RV-1 Stuff ...factory FB page


A milestone! ...RV-12 wings on (David Valcik)

VAF Family
Nephew gets Air Force pilot slot! ...Mark Burns

Corcovado video and a little bit of Sugar Loaf ...RV-10 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Ongoing Maintenance Issues
Broken Canopy ...Danny King RV-8 'Beautiful Doll'

Saturday I flew over to Hicks field (T-67) to work on the RV-1 and see if my larger than Cinderella hulk would fit into the RV-1's glass slipper size cockpit. It was windy and very cold that morning. I parked the Doll out side of Jay Pratt's RV Central hanger, and went inside to get out of the wind and drink my mug of coffee. Ten minutes later, I returned to the Doll to place my empty coffee mug in the cockpit, and I discovered two cracks in the canopy, that were not there minutes earlier. The theory that Sikaflex fillets, bonding the glass to the canopy frame to relieve the stress on the rivets, proved to be ineffective. Therefore!

Do you have a finish kit, Aero Plastics, light gray tint canopy, that you do not plan to use, because you are planning to use a Todd's canopy? If so I would like to purchase it. It would be extra nice if you live near Dallas/Fort Worth.

Things to do when you own a wind tunnel
Vent experiments ...Wade Lively

Ran my first experiment today. I compared my mark 2 flush fuel vent to the std plans 45 cut aluminum tubing using a manometer to record the readings. It took some "creative rigging" as the wind tunnel is meant for flow and drag measurements and the design creates low pressure. I found that if I pumped the inlet with my leaf blower I could get positive dynamic pressure. Since I am directly comparing with the same set up, it shouldn't matter about the flow errors induced.

The results are the flush vent is equal to or actually slightly better than the std vent in total pressure. Pressure recorded with a Dwyer magnahelic gauge 0 - 2 inches of WC. The maximum recorded avg readings for pressure were;
Std tube = 1.9 inches of WC
Flush vent = 1.9 + inches of WC. Gauge increments 0.2" so needle position is subjective.  --->

Totally Off Topic

Fri, Feb 10, 2012.  1255z
  Yesterday morning the wife taught a yoga class in our living room, so before they started I slipped out the back Jack and scooted out to 52F for a quick flight before a 10:15 eye appointment.  OVC and HZ kept me in the pattern, so it's touch 'n go practice.  I really do enjoy having a manual flaps and taildragger configuration when practicing TnG's.  The game for me is to do a wheel landing with full flaps, keep the tail up on rollout while raising the flaps, staying on centerline as the power comes back in, all the while TRYING to make it look somewhat smooth.  There's a knifefight-in-a-phonebooth moment on the ground as the speed is decaying when you're pushing forward on the control stick (to keep the tail up) while pushing down on the flap handle and tap dancing on rudder pedals...and reaching for a throttle without taking your eyes off the centerline (and re-trimming the elevator with your thumb on the control stick).  If the tailwheel touches down or the centerline slides out from under the fuse, or the mains skip around before rotation, you loose.  Crosswinds make it that much more fun.
  I call it a win if one of the five attempts is remotely smooth, but that's the reward, isn't it?  Never perfection but always trying.  I like the mix of muscle memory, total focus for about five seconds, dynamic changes and only burning about four gallons an hour 'cuz you're near idle a lot of the time.  Good clean fun in the RV.  Logged .4hrs and (5) landings.  Eye doctor said things look fine.  Come back in a year.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.

Pictures from the commute ...James Bagley Jr

Was fortunate to be able to commute to work by RV a few days this week. The timing has worked out to catch the sunrise in the morning and the sunset in the evening.  continue

Sunset calms the soul ...Brian

On the drive home, I was admiring what a nice afternoon it was. Got home and got a message Kris was going to be late. With no plans and an hour of daylight left, I raced to the hangar(nice to live 3 minutes away).  continue

Eagle's Nest--MAJOR update ...Bob Kelly

From the Factory ...posted 2/7 (RV-12)

In The Shop....
Last few rivets ...Paul Rose

Last evening my son and grandson came over and helped me set the last of the rivets on the top forward skin. I'm trying to get everything done that I can at the house before going to the airport. List is getting shorter!!! Gear leg fairings, heat shield in the lower cowl and prime the outside of the cowl, wheel pants and gear leg fairings!! It's getting exciting now!! Only 90% to go!!

Picture of my "helper".

How fast can you get out of your plane?

Last night, over dinner, a friend and I were sharing stories. His were auto racing stories and mine were flying. He races his own Porche and like many of us knows every nut bolt and washer on it. We got on the topic of fire safety. I related stories from our world of some of the events that have brought fire safety to the forefront of many of our minds.

He was telling me that some of the sanctioning bodies in racing require you to prove that you can get out of your car and get out of danger in a particular time frame. I found that to be an absolutely obvious thing to do, but have never heard of anyone doing that.

Do you test yourself to see how fast you can get out? With and without a passenger?

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Smoke System Install with pics 

Well, it seems like I am a bugger for punishment. With the cold weather -7C, I find my self working in the hanger. I purchased a Smoking Airplanes 3.5 Gallon system was was eager to get it installed. So, with hot coffee in hand into the frozen wonderland of the hanger I go. First thing i did was to install the injector on the exhaust behind the Y joint. I was surprised at how easily the pipe drilled, maybe that particular bit had not seen any stainless or fibre glass yet ! I decided on one injector for now, and will see how that works for me.  continue

RV-1 History
Just received from Van

Totally Off Topic

J.Blank sent this link to me...

 The crash you knew would happen starts around 6:53.

Thu, Feb 9, 2012.  1236z

Another 8 is flying! ...Wayne Petrus of West Monroe, LA.

(from Mark Burns) "...Wayne purchased the kit from Harold Lanfear in Pennsylvania. Mr Lanfear had completed the avionics install and most of the electrical system.

It has an Aero Sport Power O-375 engine.  The airplane was completed at the Farmerville, LA airport with the help of RV guru Glen Barron and Jackie Gilbert.

Wayne is not new to RV's having previously built two 8A's, and a 7A.

I think I have him convinced to paint it like a P-51."

Vlad the Russian - infiltrating Canada's border

"Vlad paid us a short visit last Sunday. He flew up from NJ directly to Ottawa Canada. Vlad availed himself of the Canpass feature that allows for border crossings at more airports..."  continue / many pictures

VAF Family
Hat Sighting - St Maarten

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
● From Tina's Pilot Shop ...my home field.

tina@tinaspilotshop.com and/or 1.817.490.0046

● Source: http://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/how-wings-really-work/


Totally Off Topic

Wed, Feb 8, 2012.  1226z

Fresh out of GLO Custom ...Grady's shop at 52F.  (13) pictures, and apologies for the OVC skies (it's the window we had available to us).

related: www.GLOcustom.com
(VAF advertiser)

Emergency maneuver training / FUN! ...Michael Rausch (RV-4 owner)

I recently attended APS emergency maneuver training in Phoenix, Az. This was probably the best aviation training that I have ever received! The training was a 3 day course, with 6 flights in the Extra 300L, and the experience was invaluable! A little bio on myself when I attended this course. 5000+ total time, 4 1/2 years part 121 with Expressjet, and now I drive a C550, and of course, the 4. During the 3 day course, there was about 12 hours of ground school which covered a lot of aerodynamics. One interesting tidbit I learned from this training, if you unload your aircraft from 1G to 1/2G, your stall speed decreases by 42% ( it's a good thing to know when you are in a stall). The instructors at APS are top notch (ex military / airline), and their knowledge base is incredible. Unlike regular flight training in the past, where we all have talked about all of the different types of stalls with our CFI, and only do power off and on in the aircraft. During my APS training we actually preformed every type of stall, in every type of attitude, in the aircraft. Instead of what we are used to doing, talking about the "theory" of what is going to happen during ground school, like all of us have in the past, and never preforming the actual maneuver.

For all of us, experiencing these many different types of upsets could possibly save our lives. I can't say enough how invaluable this training was.

This is only the tip of the iceberg during my experience, if you have any questions let me know. Here is the highlight reel from the last 40 minutes of my training.


In The Shop....
Finished the lights in the tips

Well almost. Thursday the AVEO national sales manager who lives pretty close is stopping by and we'll install the nav/strobe lights.

Polished out the aluminum with tripoli and will do the same where the nav lights are going.  Hopefully get the wings primed this week as well as the flaps and ailerons.

Best Shop Upgrades Continue....

It's happened to all of us....

Grace Under Pressure
Prop Comes Off In Flight (C172) ...successful landing on road.

It can be done, but God knows why they'd do it on purpose!

Totally Off Topic

Tue, Feb 7, 2012.  1211z

Who says an RV can't strengthen a marriage ...video.

...Because of the positive pireps from the VAF crew, my wife and I decided to fly down to Sunriver, Oregon for our Anniversary. It was a wonderful trip. The staff was exceptional, the food was great and the scenery was outstanding.

There was more snow down there than back in Calgary ! All in all a great getaway and highly recommended if you are looking to spend some time with your significant other.

Sure we could have flown commercial or driven 17 hours (double ) but why when we have access to Time Machines called RV's ...

Flap Motor fix with Pics ...Gary Wilcox

So, once again I find my flap motor not wanting to go down, oh well, better than not going up after take off. I had cleaned the shaft of the motor before, but did not fully disasemble the unit to clean it out of grease.
So, out to the hanger I go to resolve this issue with hopefully a better result than the last time, it lasted45 hours. First remove the flap assembly from the plane, hard to see in this pic, but there is quite abit of grease on the shaft. Some is good, but this was to much.  continue

Best Shop Upgrades ...let the bragging begin.

In The Shop....
Forward canopy skin gap

I have a gap between the aft tube of the forward canopy frame and the forward canopy skinright around the hard curve from top to side - on both sides. The forward skin gets distorted when I cleco it flush to the tube. What can I do to keep the form of the skin and still have the rivets work?

Elevator Horn Fitting Problem

...I have got a big problem with my elevator assembly on the RV8:

The WD-605-1-L elevator horn doesn’t fit anyway with to the two spars (E-705 and E-702)! I tried to cleco the assembly with and without the skin. All the holes are displaced however I try it. I put the E-705 so that the elevator horn could be mounted flush with the forward face of the E-702 spar. Has anybody else had this problem, too? What can I do to make it fit? It would be great, if anybody has an answer to me...

VAF Family
Son earns license in Belgium! ...Vern Darley

My son Trey who lives in Brussels earned his Belgium Private Pilot license today. Congrats Trey!

Trey has flown my RV-6A and RV-10, as well as my Luscombe 8E.

He is the third generation to get a pilot's license as my father, myself, and now Trey have earned our wings.

NX13PL – Out of Phase 1 – still in testing...Paul Dye RV-3B

I shut down “Junior” yesterday morning as drops from an approaching light rain dappled the cnopy with 40.1 hours on the flight-o-meter and reams of test data in the computer. Reading through the Ops Lims statement, I had no reservations signing it out of Phase 1 as having fulfilled all of the REQUIRED testing to determine that it has no hazardous flight characteristics throughout the normal flight envelope – and also signed off the huge number of aerobatic maneuvers (“left and right”) that we’ve gone through. So legally, the airplane is free to roam – which is good, because we still have testing to do!

The “additional testing” is generally to build detailed performance charts (we have enough rough data already to refine the envelope) and to check out all of the nooks and crannies of the avionics package. Eventually, we’ll build nice cruise/power charts from the performance data, although realistically (based on experience), we’ll probably find the numbers we like the best and use them all the time. It’s nice to know the capability in advance (for flight planning) of course. In the world of avionics, we’ve verified that everything is connected and plays properly, the Comm radios Comm, the Nav radios Nav (and the entertainment radios entertain). We’ve flown enough with the autopilot to verify that it can do the whole coupled approach thing while we sip on a juice-bag….but now the serious work of understanding all of the little nuances begins. And of course, since we beta test software, everything we learn may change as upgrades come along.

So while Phase 1 is complete, we still have lots of fun test flying ahead. It has been a lot of fun mentoring Louise through her parts of the Phase 1 program, and I have enjoyed exploring the envelope with such a capable airplane – especially when doing vertical roles at only 70% power. Hopefully, we’ll get some time to do a little fiberglass touch-up work before it heads to the paint shop in April. But for those in Texas, you might start seeing the unpainted -3 with the “pepto-cowl” on a ramp somewhere in the meantime!

Properly Grounding ...from Dean at AeroLEDs

Just to reinforce the importance of following our installation instructions and properly grounding the body of the light, here is an email I just received from someone who had noise and was able to solve it by grounding the mount for the wingtip light:

"I just want to send a thank you I have been trying to get the strobe noise out of my headset for over a year and your tech support had me clean the anodizing and ground the mount to light ground. I can’t believe that that worked so well!! I flew for 30 minites after fix and the quite was so loud it made my ears shout for joy!!!"

Here is a photo of what the mounting bracket ground should look like (note that it shares the same pin in the connector as the black wire, so that the grounds are common):  continue

Things you never want to see in D.C.
       Experiencing an aerial ‘head butt,’ FRZ ‘sparkle’

The F-16 that suddenly appears off our left wing is obvious.

It wags its wings as it goes by, and its engine, in afterburner, shakes the sky like an aerial earthquake.

An identical airplane that trails a few miles behind and slightly above us, however, isn’t visible to us at all. It’s there to intervene if we take some sort of hostile or evasive action.

Recently, AOPA staffer Bob Knill and I joined the Civil Air Patrol in a single-engine, fixed-gear GippsAero G-8 Airvan on an aerial exercise that gives the U.S. Air Force F-16 pilots based at Andrews Air Force Base some practice at identifying and tracking relatively slow-moving general aviation aircraft near the Washington, D.C., area.  continue

Totally Off Topic

Mon, Feb 6, 2012.  1238z
  Morning!  Lotsa RV stuff to cover this morning, so don't worry about work for a bit.  It'll be there when you're done goofing off.  VAF on...  dr

Landing a Norwegian RV-7 on a Frozen Lake in 28*C (-18*F)

On Thursday this week, the runway on the lake "Vermundsjøen" finally opened and the wifey and me flew up there to test the newly plowed runway and to have dinner at the nearby cafe.

The runway opening was late this season because of the unusually high winter-temps, but during the last couple of weeks, the temps has dropped and the ice has frozen to the required thickness...  more

RV-3- Phase 1 Tweaks ...Paul Dye

Well here we sit with 39.0 hours on the RV-3’s clock and the rain coming down in a constant drizzle….and it’s been low, or foggy, or rainy (or all three as a bonus!) since last Tuesday! Fortunately, we have essentially completed what I consider the legally “essential” parts of Phase 1 (envelope definition and expansion, climb/glide/cruise performance, aerobatic maneuvers, and normal flight parameter definitions), so when we can get another hour in, we’ll be able to sign it off and start some cross-country work. Then of course, we’ll continue refining our performance tables and doing extensive avionics testing and practice before committing to things like IFR flight.  more
update: Plane out of Phase I as of print time today...

Related: Thoughts on the G3X (posted this morning)

Testing out Dynabeads

From the factory FB page....


Rudi Greyling RV-10 Status

In The Shop....
Found a trick to cure my canopy frame blues!! ...6/7/9

...Getting the frame to match the roll bar was not that hard but once I got it right the aft end was too wide. I fought and fought with this until I was ready to pull my hair out (except I don't have any left to pull). I finally came up with a plan that made it easy to adjust both the height and width of the bow! I used ratcheting straps to incrementally tune the aft bends in a controlled manner click by click. To measure results just loosen things up. Be patient, don't try to do it all at once. The wooden bar acting as a spacer between the front bow is critical. Worked like a charm. Hope this helps someone else...

Use the holes that are there ...with pipe hangers from Home Depot.

Sunny Day In The Northwet

The sun made a rare winter appearance in the Pacific Northwet, and along with it the desire to commit aviation (I don't think I was the only one so inclined). I was planning to go to McMinnville, OR to see the Spruce Goose, among other things, but it was too bumpy for me on the inland side. I noticed, though, that further west it wasn't as bumpy so I went to Tillamook instead.

N91RV Completed Phase 1 ...Mark Santoleri RV-9A

Engine problem - suggestions + support needed

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Air Scoop on RV-3

...note the eyeball blower vent on left side of panel. The air scoop is just fwd of that. Plenty of air blast through - I'm sure someone could do a much better job with a less obtrusive scoop in that position...


Pat Hatch's Aileron Trim

...I went the aileron trim tab route and absolutely love it. I think 99% of folks will not be interested, but for the other 1%, it is the cat's meow. It takes a lot of extra work, but if you like doing this kind of stuff, go for it. I can have one tank full and the other empty and trim it out with my trim tab. Besides, it's so cool to watch the little tab go up and down in flight...

Event News
Putting the RV-1 Tribute Tour to Van on a map

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
G3X V6.30 Software Is Available! ...Garmin G3X.

MGL Avionics - news ...Transponder and Navworx ADSB.

Essex Skypark Association: Petition to SAVE the Skypark from being closed by Baltimore County

Totally Off Topic

Fri, Feb 3, 2012.  1215z
  Spent the evening listening to our high school girl's choir perform at Winspear Hall on the UNT campus in Denton.  Last performance before a trip down to San Antonio for state competition.  I don't know what Susie and I did to deserve such a wonderful daughter.  The acoustics in this venue were unbelievable - kept closing my eyes and just soaking in the sounds.  Wish you coulda been there - her and her friends were amazing.
  Hope you and yours have a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!  Looking kinda damp here in N.TX for the weekend, so wishing it's better flying in your neck of the woods.
  br, dr

From the 'Single? - I'm guessing you're single.' thread...

In The Shop....
Tempo Black Wrinkle Enamel 

...The images don't do the actual texture effect justice but you should get the idea. To get printing to stick to the texture such as below the circuit breakers, I used dry transfers that were rubbed into the surface and then sealed with clear lacquer. I have always been pleased with the result...

Waiting on Fusledge ...Jack Hunt RV-7

Were doing a lot of work on getting the fiberglass tips done and priming the main wings for painting.  I have included one link that you can use to go view the pictures . I lot of frustration... learning to paint again....

VAF Family
I can officially wear the VAF cap ...Shannon Evans

As of yesterday I am the owner of N3VR a nice, VFR, RV3. It passed the pre buy & a "test flight" by Zach Crotts to become mine. Zach said it was fun & flew great. Soon as I get transition training from Alex at Eagles Nest I plan to have it in the air. You guy's looked like you were having to much fun! <g>

9A Fuse Goes to Airport ...Pat Garboden

After a lot of work finishing the paint and related cockpit chores, N942PT (reserved) was loaded on a friendly aircraft carrier, also known as a tow truck, and hauled to the assembly hanger. Upper molars were added for aesthetics. Flightline interior to be installed after we take the wings to the hanger and make it look like a plane. All parts are now painted with a few areas to be buffed. It is nearing time when we can finish assemble the plane and work towards first flight...

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Relay deck. ...Pat Hatch

...here's a photo of the relay deck (homemade) mounted under the floor. This is really the most accessible place to mount it and very convenient.

And here's the photo with everything buttoned up. The four screws on the right are for the relay deck...

How we actually use it...
RV-10 cargo hauler ...Pierre Smith (ag sprayer by day)

I flew my -10 to Hot Springs, Arkansas, on Tuesday, hauling my PT-6 gearbox in the back, to a turbine shop. At 140 lbs, it all balanced out nicely and the 600 mile trip took 3 1/2 hours, with quartering headwinds of 46-50 MPH.

I noticed the slight amount of down elevator, since I was solo with the equivalent of a passenger in the rear, making for a much better CG and the resulting added 2 MPH was sweet, at 7,500', 75% power, 205 MPH TAS! Fastest I've seen yet, at 75%, on the way home today.

I flew 68% out there, LOP and made 190 MPH TAS, with a fuel burn of only 11.7 GPH. The Dynon showed me a range of 950 miles and over 5 hours of fuel.

Local Neighborhood Article ...Mike Quam

...In September of 2010 a writer for my neighborhood paper asked to do a short article on the plane I am building in the garage. I just happened across the article tonight and thought it would be fun to share...

Totally Off Topic

Possibly Photoshop'd...

Thu, Feb 2, 2012.  1238z

RV-1 Photos - Work Day #14 - Engine Start

Work Day #14 report
Since our last work day, the following items arrived at RV-Central: a set of really cool ‘period’ seat cushions from Oregon Aero, a beautiful custom propeller from Catto, a shiny new prop extension from Saber, a new set of Champion spark plugs from Tina’s Pilot Shop, and a vacuum pump driven gear from Air Salvage of Dallas. Generous vendor support has been the foundation of this project and they deserve your continuing support. Friday was a visit to Grady at Glo Custom for an update on the canopy, cowl, and wheel pants... and they’re right on schedule. The ‘crew’ gathered Saturday morning with Jay’s ‘punch list’ in hand, and by noon were ready to install the new Catto propeller.  continue

Why yes, I'm single.  Why do you ask?

...a thread with pictures of airplane parts in the house.

From the Factory ...RV-12 E-LSA Skyview Avionics Order Form

In The Shop....
Thoughts on F-640 / F-639 Floor (RV-6/6A)

Here is how I did the reverse flange on my seat pan ribs to clear the control stick. Different method, same result as the rest.

Here's my 10-year-old RV-6 undergoing a recent condition inspection. You can see where the flanges have been altered as suggested by your first post.

Good Question, John (more NACA duct) ...Bruce S.

I remember going through this same thought process. The directions aren't real clear about this, as you noted. I don't think it's too critical when you mount the vents. I think you can mount them pretty much any time you like. I waited until after I had the rudder/brake pedal assembly in place and the vent lines, etc. installed. That way they aren't in the way.  more

● (David Domeier)  It's been 2 weeks since the empennage kit arrived and after some 53 hours of work it is beginning to look like an airplane may be emerging from all the parts and rivets with the help of a very good plan. This was the state of progress as of 2 days ago.

2 steps forward, 1 backward...
Things were progressing nicely yesterday, managed to get both elevator skins and all the stiffeners dimpled, cleaned up, primed and back riveted. I felt like I was closing in on completing the empennage kit. Right skin below ready for spar, ribs and counter weight install. Left skin is similarly complete.  more

Movin' on
Spent today on the left elevator. It will be riveted before noon tomorrow and then it is on to build the trim tab.

For those new to this process, if there is any wisdom to pass on here it is stick with the plan. Do not jump ahead. Sometimes instructions are confusing and if they are, do not press on until the confusion is resolved.  more

VAF Family
My wife, RV partner passed ...our friend David Patchett needs our prayers and support.

Flight Testing
RV-10 phase 1 testing

I have accumulated just over 26hrs in phase one and all seems to work very well.  Couple of things I have observed that I am more curious about than concerned.  Engine set up is AeroSport 260HP, AFP injection, Light speed ignition on the top and magnetos on the bottom. Exactly the same installation I had on my RV-8 and no trouble for 450 hrs.  more

Strobe in action (on the bench at least)

Take a look at the you tube video I made tonight. You will see the wing tips from my 9A on the bench with the wing-tip landing lights (not featured) and the ZTron NAV/Strobes installed.

The video is 1 minute 13 seconds long and the NAV/Strobes fully activate at about 49 seconds.

You will also see my homemade power supply made from an old computer power supply.. I got the directions from this site... more

Totally Off Topic

Not RV but really cool student flying project
   - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YQIMGV5vtd4
   - https://fling.seas.upenn.edu/~dmel/wiki/index.php?n=Main.Movies


Wed, Feb 1, 2012.  1231z
  Some recent posts warrant a quick note about following the posting rules.  One of the quickest ways to get on my scat list is to create a thread complaining about the moderators and/or moderation policies I have created for my online house here.  Read and follow the posting rules - they aren't rocket surgery.  No mod-baiting on VAF - I enforce this with lead pipe cruelty.  Being a moderator is a thankless job, and cleaning up other people's messes is no fun.  We get it....15,000 pilots don't agree on everything.  Wanna vent about how the world is run all wrong?  Go to the comments section of any article on politico.com and have at it.  Just don't do it here.
  Want to give me some feedback via email sometime?  I welcome your thoughts.  Send it by email, not a thread in the forums.
  There are a couple three forum accounts that I'm about ready to drop the perma banhammer down on if they don't play nice and friendly from here on out.  VAF will be a nice, civil place 24/7.  For the handful of folks that feel compelled to push the rules (and my buttons), I would recommend you exercise extreme posting caution from here on out.  The safety is off and my finger is hovering over the big red button.  Make my day.
  Follow the posting rules and we got no worries.  Now that the bad cop stuff is out of the way, please enjoy this video of a chimpanzee riding on a Seqway to cleanse your mental palette.  Back to the greatest hobby on earth...and happy hump day! 

Super Day in NE IOWA 1-31-12

Was at about 3500' flying thru the mountains ( joke ) of Iowa this morning. What a great day. You could see the horizon. Some haze, but really nice. A tease for those still building.

John Bender (RV-12)

February Calendar Wallpaper Online


In The Shop....
NACA daca whacka

I put mine in after running the fuel vent lines. I attached mine with proseal and nothing else. They are not going anywhere and feel really solidly attached.

Skirt Questions

Quick question for you guys. You know how the windshield fairing overlaps the canopy? What about on the sides where the skirt comes up to the metal. My skirt butts right up to the windshield fairing here, but i didn't make it overlap. Mistake?

VAF Family
Alf Olav Frog Inflight Portrait

Here's a shot I took in my 3rd or 4th flight into phase 1.  I was then, (and still am!) a VERY happy RV-pilot <g>.

SB's---Smokin Airplanes smoke system

Building Tips / Techniques/ Mods
Brackett Air Filter

...it's an externally mounted square Brackett filter. I built the airplane in the '80s when everyone was scooping unfiltered air ... which I thought was crazy, so I came up with this. Fairly innovative in it's day ... pretty clunky now! Works great, though (probably lose ~5kts on the top end!)

$45 DIY wing jack stand

Advertiser's Corner...sent in by the advertisers of this site.
From Avery Tools...

Totally Off Topic

I'm guessing you're single.