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June 29, 2018.   Issue #4,599.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.

16 ship flyover/Missing Man for Stu "Falcon Flight" McCurdy

...emailed to me by Bobby Lucroy and others

Celebration of Life Event at USAFA Report

- Falcon Flight conducted a 16-ship Missing Man Flyover at the US Air Force Academy outside of Colorado Springs, during Falcon’s memorial service and internment there. The flight was coordinated by Bobby “Luke” Lucroy, Ron “Shorts” Walker, Roy “Jarhead” Geer, and Mark “Dula” and Pat “Dulette” Dulaney. Jarhead led the flight, and Dula played the role of on-site liaison and ground coordinator. The flight was professionally conducted and very well flown, despite many challenges. Local ATC placed many constraints on the operation, and the tactical control over the Academy was a rapid burst of frequency changes for Lead. A thunderstorm rolled through just prior to stepping to the planes, but cleared out just in time. We all felt Falcon ordered it to move along to the East! You can see the storm moving over the field and beyond, in 2B’s cockpit video (link below). Vader control (the final USAFA tactical freq for the flight) was jammed by a Country Music station from mountain top towers near the holding fix…but at least it was Country…Falcon Flight is from Texas after all. The pull was orchestrated by Dula on the ground, and the timing was perfect. Hats off to a great group of pros that flew the mission well, despite many challenges! The line-up was as follows:

1. Roy “Jarhead” Geer (Falcon Flight)
2. Steve “Amazin” Grace (Falcon Flight)
3. Bobby “Luke” Lucroy (Falcon Flight)
4. Ron “Shorts” Walker (Falcon Flight)

1. Craig “2B” Wilcox (KC Flight)
2. Scott “Scoot” and Tanya “Cookie” Card (Falcon Flight)
3. Ed “Sabre” O’Connor (Rocky Mountain Renegades)
4. Kent “Yobo” Yohe (KC Flight)

1. Mike “KB” Smith (West Coast Ravens)
2. Brad “Tailwind” Ransom (West Coast Ravens)
3. Frank “Bogey” Brewer
4. Craig “Goliath” Taylor

1. Stephanie “Cyclone” Wells (Rocky Mountain Renegades)
2. Bill “Gunnbody” Gunn (Falcon Flight)
3. Mark “Rocket” Frederick (Falcon Flight)
4. Bob “Nasty” Mills (West Coast Ravens)


Ground debrief. Or as Paul Harvey would say, "The rest of the story".

Dulette and I were in almost constant contact with Janet Edwards from about 1230 on. Janet is the Mortuary Affairs contact person and is responsible for the set up, preparation and smooth execution of the Memorial Service so the family has a positive experience with grieving their loved one.

As Pat and I are driving to the cemetery we are getting HEAVY rain and light hail. I am literally saying a prayer to God to not let it hail on your aircraft. We are looking at weather radar and see that the storm is moving East and the West is totally clear. Janet Edwards tells me they are moving the ceremony indoors, I ask her if we can wait on that decision until we get a better and clear understanding of the weather picture. It was going to add another level of difficulty for the flyby if we had to move everyone inside. I talked to Maj. Chris Reynols (The Supervisor of Flying, SOF, which was VADER) and he said their wx gurus were saying a break in the weather from about 1330-1415 and then another round of tstm action. FYI, all of that was why Janet asked if we could move up the flyby to 1330, I told her later would be better and it was a good command decision call on Luke's part to stay on track!

So, after the heavy rain part we break out while driving to the AFA and see blue sky to the west and over the Academy. Diana's great contact with the Higher Power is working and I know we are gonna have clear skies for the flyover. I tell Janet to keep the ceremony outdoors, she hesitates and says the Academy is recommending an indoor event, I tell her Luke says they WILL make the TOT, to do it outside and to trust me, it will all be just fine! Thank you, Lord for backing me up on this one!!! Dulette and I arrive at the cemetery at 1300 and everything is in place for the outdoor service. I speak with the family members that are saying words at the event, I emphasize to them the importance of keeping their remarks to 4-5 minutes. Stu's son, Craig, was going to be the last to speak and he said his talk was 3 1/2 minutes, I said that is perfect, when you speak I will give the 5 minute call to the Flight and the timing should work out perfect with the 21 gun salute and Taps. Janet was with me and we agreed that would be perfect.

In the meantime, I'm trying to do radio checks with Vader. As we anticipated the power of the handheld radio is not adequate for this event. The cemetery sits down in a "bowl", so it is hard to get line of sight for good transmission. I could hear Vader when he spoke and I could hear Falcon Flight as ya'll were forming up, but no one could hear me until you got closer. Oh, and I could not hear your comm jamming music either. :-) We went with using my phone to communicate with Vader and he would pass on to ya'll, I think the text to ya'll was also working. Was very glad we briefed all the backups.

The ceremony starts exactly on time. All is going to plan, opening event, chaplain speaking, all right on the timing we anticipated. Then the 2 family speakers get up and only speak for about 2 minutes each. When Craig starts, the timing has now moved up from our anticipated '57 TOT, so I give the 5 minute call to Vader and he passes to you, and asking for an actual TOT. Jarhead comes back with a time and I look at my watch and think, this is Perfect! When Craig finishes we have a minute and a half until Jarhead's announced time over target...Awesome....

It was perfect. The formation, the smoke, the pull and overfly......you guys DID GREAT! As always, when I see this tribute to someone I know, it does choke me up. It is the power of the moment and the finality of our "missing" comrade. Falcon will rest easy in eternity, you honored him well!!

Diana and family were elated. The flyby was the priority of the ceremony. Everything else was nice, but she wanted the flyby to happen. She and the whole family were totally happy. Again, ya'll were perfect in your tribute to Falcon and they were pleased with the results. I received all of the compliments for ya'll. Everyone commented how perfect it was, beautiful and moving. The priority was the excellence in the presentation...and ya'll nailed it!! I also got reports from the AFA staff that it was an awesome display of airmanship. Diana said they were visiting the Chapel and people were talking about it there and commented how good it looked.

Final note: Craig McCurdy placed the urn of Falcon's ashes into the vault. Many had nickels to "throw a nickel on the grass, save a Fighter Pilot's ass". I threw 16 nickels as I named the flight members and then 2 more for Dulette and I.

RIP, Falcon. Was a pleasure to serve with you!


Videos: From the ground / From the air


RV6A N315WA went airborne today ...Sdemeyer

Two years of work finally payed off today. N315WA is the newest Vans RV to take to the sky! First flight went without a hicup. Nice flying plane!


Monument Valley at Dawn ...jpowell13 pics

I took my friend Doug Woolworth to Monument Valley at dawn last Thursday and he got some good pictures with his smart phone. If the light is right this place is magic. John


John in Italy ...lucaperazzolli report

I had the opportunity to meet John in LIPB (Bolzano) where I was with my RV-8 for helping him for custom documents.

Then we flew together to my home base (LIDT) where he spent a couple of days to change oil, filter and fixing some little issues in our team hangar.

It was a great experience to know a man who does the world flight in an RV.

Today he took off @ 09:45 local time and now he has arrived in Crete (Greek)

Follow his trip (HERE), he's a good person and I hope you have the fortune to meet him during his adventure.

Here are some photos and a little simple video I took during the escort flight from LIPB to LIDT.


N573RM ...patrick_r82

Just got my 7A back from Glo at 52F. Very pleased with the job they did. Would highly recommend them to anyone in search of quality workmanship at an affordable price.

Now that it’s back I’m looking forward to knocking out the last 1/2 of the phase 1, then taking all the friends and family for some joy rides.

Thanks for the great source of knowledge VAF!


Drilling, drilling, drilling ...Tdeman

RV-6 Update:

I’ve been taking advantage of the (rare) Oregon sunshine the past several weeks surfing and biking, but managing to get some RV-6 construction done in the evenings after work.

Did a bit with the baggage floor and forward seat pans...



June 28, 2018.   Issue #4,598.

RV-14A N196 First Flight! ...bkervaski

First flight! Went great and uneventful, here's a video - https://vimeo.com/277339586

Thank you Vans, VAF, SteinAir, Vic Syracuse, Dan Horton, and most of all my co-builder Phoenix. What a wonderful airplane!


Boone IA RV day ...TShort

We made it out for RV day in Boone, IA this year - not sure why the event wasn't more advertised, it's a great airport and they have breakfast AND lunch! We missed breakfast (taking delivery of a friend's -10 QB fuse), but made it just in time for lunch. Other than the "water landing" (approach end of the runway was surrounded by water, and the taxiway was covered) it was an uneventful trip:  continue


More Aleutian Campaign. ...Vlad the Amazing

Thank you guys. If I can do it anybody can. Just wait for a good weather window and go. You would be surprised how easy it is.

... leaving King Cove PAVC. A Grant Aviation Caravan quickly unloaded his boxes while I was still back taxiing runway 25. Where are you going brother? Trying to reach the Dutch, I'll turn left then low over the village, will be out of your way shortly. I am jealous the kid said good luck.

Super excited I shoved the throttle wide open too fast. The wood prop picked up a pebble or two the shrapnel hit somewhere under. Why did I do that I've been to worse fields always rolled partial power till nose up. Dummy.


RV-10/14 Flap Actuators are here! ...Pat Hatch


Rivet Gun Slipped ...Torch76

This was my first time riveting close up against another piece of aluminum. The gun slipped, and these smileys occurred.
1. Is this a situation where I feather out the smileys with a Scotch Brite pad so they don't catch my nail, add some primer over the scuffed area, and move on?

2. Any tips for riveting with the gun in close proximity to another piece? It's hard to feel like I have solidly placed the gun and bucking bar.


Milestone: My RV-6 Flying Weight Is Down Ten Pounds

(61) days ago I weighed in at 173.4 lbs.  Wednesday morning I weighed 163.4.  Switched from an oatmeal-based breakfast to an egg/meat/fruit one and gave up French fries and baked potatoes.  Very little bread and a scooch more exercise, but nothing crazy, just a normal 45mins four times a week.  Cardio and weights.  Netflix and Youtube concerts in the ears to make the workout less boring.

Nutshell: fewer carbs.  Anyway, more energy and able to tolerate the summer heat better.  No more afternoon energy dip.  I miss Dr. Pepper (last one 456 days ago on 3/28/17), but who's counting. ;^)

Anywho, my data that a little change can make a difference if you're looking to shave a little weight off the flight. 



June 27, 2018.   Issue #4,597.

HI KAY!  ...the man, the myth, the waypoint.

While flying back from KXBP Monday I came across the HIKAY waypoint on the G3X.  That's sorta funny to me because one of our local pilots (Kay F.) takes his RV-8A out pretty close to that spot NW of 52F just about every day for some alumitherapy.  A happy coincidence.  I flew through it today just for giggles (pic).  Told Kay about it and we had a good laugh.

If the FAA is reading this and is short on naming ideas, and sees in its wisdom to someday create a VAFDR [vaf-dur] or HEYDR [hay-dee-arr] waypoint NW of KDFW somewhere, I promise I'll use it with gusto, treat it respectfully and see that it gets portrayed fairly and with dignity in write-ups here. ;^)


It would probably end up being my avatar on the forums (VAFDR).  I mean, how cool would that be!  A guy can dream - even some bonehead like me ;^).  Hope you have a nice Wednesday, and don't forget to say hi to Kay.    


Aleutian Campaign ...Vlad

There is a territory with the worst weather in the world. Commercial flyers hate it. Aviation infrastructure there is minimal and modern amenities are few. This American territory was partially occupied by Japan in the Second World War. The name of the territory is the Aleutians. The fog shrouded chain of islands few know about even fewer flew over it.

I spent five years preparing for the trip. I made a couple of long runs over the years testing myself and the machine. I researched, asked, called, emailed. 90% of responders advised against going to the Islands. There is nothing to see there it's nasty and unforgiving they said. Some advisers cautioned that I might put lifes of rescuers at grave risk if I had an emergency. Two more years were spent after that for more research and I was comfortable knowing couple fishing boats working on my route that season. So I withdrew all roubles from the bank and arrived at "a base" in Alaska.

My airplane is a Day VFR RV9A. The engine is a high time stock Lycoming O-320. Wood prop on the way out but well balanced by a pro. No leading edge protection so I do my best to avoid the rain. There are basic VFR round dials on the instrument panel. I have a transponder and a radio. I navigate using compass, paper charts and an app on ipad. I don't have an onboard weather.

But what I do have is a couple dozen of good friends we know each other for years. On a long run like this a bit of help matters a lot. A tank of gas here, a bed to stay there and a meal in between go long way if you are traveling for weeks. Thank you! I might reveal your first names at the end of the story if you wish so.  continue


Mike Starkey Turning 70 Margaritaville Hangar Party


Hangar floor pic ...Pat Stewart

Just completed tiling the hangar floor with vinyl, peel and stick tile. It turned out great. The tile is a salt and pepper granite look and was really pretty simple to install.



June 26, 2018.   Issue #4,596.
  A short sprinkle around sunrise Monday lowered the OAT here for a few glorious moments to 71*F, so said the temp sensor on the 'ol Jeep bumper.  Breakfast plans changed of course....drive thru quick...haul-a out to the field for RV therapy.  VERY enjoyable temps for a bit (100+F H.I. later).  Pics of the quarry at KXBP after gas purchase.  Various lighting and clouds w/an iPhone - nothing to get worked up over.
  Rob got the south windsock back up later, and all the criteria for a good splash image were immediately met. ;^).  The three cows which moseyed onto the south end of the field before lunch were icing on the cake.  Trucks and Jeeps herding cows.  Texas.


From the Gentleman Landing the 7A Off Airport The Other Day

...and thank you for sharing Sir!  dr

"Thank you for all your support. I truly would like to have a debrief on this at the squadron someday to discuss lessons learned. I’ll buy the keg.

As to the specifics of the accident, I was flying with my grandson Luki to Thomas Russell Field in Alexander City. As I reduced power in the descent (approximately 5 miles northeast of ALX) the engine gave one sputter and began losing power. I raised the nose to pick up 80 knots, turned on the boost pump, switched tanks, checked fuel (11L/10R), went mixture full rich and toggled mags. The engine was unresponsive.

Now, one of my biggest mistakes and regrets is that I looked at that big long runway and said, “I think I can make that”. I pointed it to the end of the runway, feathered the prop, and told Luki we would be a full stop. As it became apparent that making the field would be questionable, if not impossible, I made a hard right turn to land in the grass/parking lot behind the Taco Bell. I expected to land in the first field and probably hit the fence between the two portions of the lots. I did not expect the power lines (which I did not see) on the other side of the trees.

To any of you guys congratulating me or saying “great job”, I would say we got very, very lucky. Instead of hitting just one of the power lines and flipping on our back, we had one wire above the spinner and one below. The airplane slowed remarkably smoothly (relatively speaking) as we continued to the ground. I expect many of you carrier pilots have had more rapid decelerations hitting the 3-wire. What would Greese, Bill, Don, Waldo, or most of the other great pilots in the squadron have done? They would have taken luck out of the equation and headed toward the soccer fields, or even directly toward the field I chose, without first fixating on a big long piece of concrete just out of reach. That would have given them time to do a short field approach, clearing any lines or obstacles. They probably would have even been able to re-use the airplane. As for other things I should have done (but didn’t); turn off the fuel selector valve or unlock the canopy. For the record, the pictures look much worse than it was immediately after touchdown. We climbed out unscathed being careful to avoid the power lines. The power lines, however, continued to spark and started the aircraft on fire shortly after we safely exited. The fire department was on site almost immediately, but would not approach the airplane until the power company confirmed the lines were cold, so we stood there and watched the airplane burn to the ground. I do not intend to imply that wasn’t the best call. It was. I’m just explaining why it looks as bad as it does.

The obvious unanswered question is “why did the engine quit”? I don’t know.

So, thank you for your kind words and support. I just thought you should all know the rest of the story."


The Adventures of N616TK

My adventure began with the first kit, February 6, 2009.  continue


Slosh mystery

We removed one tank and took the cover plate off to see what we could find. Surprisingly, as far as I can tell, there is NO sloshing compound anywhere. All I can see is gray sealant (Proseal?) at the seams and joints. I did see lots of white flakes (assumed to be slosh?). So where did these flakes come from?? Here are the photos of the inside of my tank. I used an inspection camera to look in all the compartments of the tank and only saw gray sealant. There's nothing white except the flakes.


Cranky Starter II - (No Swingy, No Starty)

Hello. I have read as many “cranky starter” and “starter problem” threads as I can find, but I am running out of ideas to solve my starter problems on my Lycoming IO-320 standard compression engine. I have a Hartzell 2-blade C/S metal prop with 1 Slick Mag & 1 Lightspeed CDI ignition module. Total time on engine is 300 hrs, and I use Phillips 20w50 X/C oil.

My Symptoms:
My key ignition switch takes 3-4 attempts to get the prop to move past the compression stroke before it will swing the prop to start. (The engine starts up just fine, once the prop is swinging.)

My Actions & Results To-Date:
Replaced 7 yr-old 12V Odyssey PC680 battery with new Odyssey PC680 battery 4-mos. ago.
Result: Same start-up symptoms with my existing permanent magnet Sky-Tec 149-LS Lightweight starter.

Cleaned all cable and wire connections from battery to starter - positive and negative.
Result: Same start-up symptoms.

Replaced starter with new series-wound Sky-Tec 149-NL starter 3 weeks ago.
Result: Same symptoms with new starter.

Replaced Starter Contactor with new Starter Contactor 2 weeks ago.
Result: Same start-up symptoms.

Replaced Master Contactor with new Vans Master Contactor this past weekend.
Result: Same start-up symptoms.
Note: Output lug of master contactor is joined to input lug of starter contactor with 3-1/4" length, double-thickness of copper bus bar.

Measured Voltage at various locations, per Sky-Tec’s trouble-shooting guide: 13.0 Volts (No-Load) at battery, 11.0 Volts (When Prop is Cranking) at battery, 10.6-10.7 Volts at starter (When Prop is Cranking), No measurable resistance on major power and ground cables. Above Voltage tests were with newest Odyssey battery, alone.

Hooked old & new Odyssey batteries in parallel and retested.
Result: Same start-up symptoms.
(Once the prop did start swinging, it did swing with more authority.)

Talked to Alan at Sky-Tec support this morning. He is perplexed, too, as 10+ Volts at the starter should provide plenty of torque to start without stalling. However, he requested I make the following additional test:

“Disconnect the starter contactor’s positive cable from the new starter, and hook up a 12V starter caddy or known good 12V battery directly to the starter’s positive lug and good ground to eliminate potential upstream problems.”

The above test sounds simple enough. But frankly, the idea of making contact with a cable end that will have 100-200 Amps flowing through it scares me to death! I imagine some arcing sparks would occur, too.

Can someone suggest a safe way to complete this test?
Do you have any other suggestions that I may be missing?

I have nearly run out of parts to replace.



EAA 105 Poker Run



June 25, 2018.   Issue #4,595.
  52F’s POA had a soft opening Saturday morn of the new airport office (33.050604, -97.231263) complete with pancakes at Tina’s. A nice turnout with nice people - even an impromptu meeting regarding signage on the field.  Pictures.  Making 52F better all the time….
  Got in a little flight before the carbfest. Mass, F1 race, some World Cup, Forbidden Planet on the DVR, computer time and the weekend was done. A nice mix. It’s so hot here now we have to make the RV flights early early or late late. Summer in Texas and all that…
  Hope you had a very nice RV weekend and have a nice Monday.


Nice Place to Take a Break in Texas ...Chris Pratt RV-8

Traded the Dallas heat for the Hill Country heat in Fredericksburg, Texas this past Friday. Nice break and change of pace for a day and a night. Parked and stayed at the Hangar Hotel on T82 (Gillespie County), visited the Nimitz museum (and must do for WWII buffs), strolled the quaint and clean main street, and generally relaxed.

About 1.25 hrs south of DFW via RV. You can often expect some low viz at T82 early morning but it burns off quickly. Must be the Hills. Oh, and Uber is now available so you can skip the car rental.  continue


New Born RV9A at WHP

Today we got Our DAR inspection! Certificate on hand... 1st start up will be next.
Rico Burgos
RV9a - Building, Based at KWHP (CA)
C-150 Based at KMOD


First time fiberglass work a success

I was very intimidated with the fiberglass work. I following the plans for the fairings and I am very satisfied with the results. This builds a little confidence for the upcoming windshield fairing.



GVTX 18-54 (Greeneville, Texas)
26 June – 01 July 2018
Greeneville, TX



Broken exhaust hanger

Discovered during condition inspection. Has any ever had one of these break before? Any tips on ordering a new one? I believe this is a Vetterman system, but I don't see parts on their website (also called Friday and left a message - although it looks like they keep limited hours on Fridays (I wish I could do that.))


Flying at Last (Again) ...Dayton Murdock

I am finished with my engine upgrade and have flown the airplane for the five hours necessary in phase 1. I am delighted with the performance change the aircraft exceeds my expectations. The cruise speed has increased significantly fuel burn however is another story I didn’t know you could put that much gas through Lycoming.The new climb performance is stellar I am very happy with it. I have a few more little things to work on and I am not posting any numbers if you want to know the numbers send me a PM and I will give them to you . ...
Dayton Murdock


Foam Used to Close Up Fairings

...Steve Melton experience


Misaligned holes in elevator tip ribs

I'm trying to do the final drill of the #40 holes between the E-913 counterbalance skins and the E-903 and E-904 tip ribs. I'm having a real hard time trying to get some of the holes to align. I've contacted Van's technical support already and gotten a response, but their suggestions haven't worked so far. I thought I'd throw this out to the VAF and see if anyone has experienced this same issue.

I've done the fluting of the E-903 per page 09-02, step 5 and it's pretty flat. The E-904 rib came fully fluted from the factory, but it wasn't very flat. There was about 0.200 in. out of plane, so I "defluted" best I could to bring it back to flat.

When I cleco the assembly together, a group of holes are misaligned by 1/3 to 1/2D.

Has anybody experienced this and more importantly, how do you deal with it?



June 22, 2018.   Issue #4,593.
  Tater is doing much better post-wisdom teeth removal.  Going through the mashed potatoes and ice cream like nobody's business.  Amazing how fast kids bounce back.
  LOTS of wind and rain my neighborhood last night around 10pm (video / radar grab).  The last ten seconds of the vid is 'spirited'.  Trees down in the area.  Prolly three inches rain.  Needed....just not so violently.
  Granbury pancake fly-in this Saturday if you're in Texas.  More below.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend!!!


Tracking the Around-the-World RV-9A Flight


Milestone: Painted ...Mark Dickens RV-8

Just picked my plane up from Evoke Aviation where Jonathan McCormick and crew pulled off a miracle, taking a plane that was average at best and making it look amazing. He really did an awesome job. I can't say enough! Extremely pleased!


RV Questions - A Compiled List ...Jake Frantz

RV Questions: A Compiled List (Unabridged)

Good afternoon VAF,

As a long time reader (and less frequent author), I have learned a great deal about the RV community, the aircraft, and a little about what I would like my mission to entail in the future years. I have had the great opportunity to fly in a couple RV's - including obtaining my TW endorsement in one. I have visited a couple build projects and got my hands dirty, too. There really is no excuse for me waiting to pull the trigger, other than my busy work life for the next couple years. I'm pushing 30, so its nearly time I got started.

I am a longtime fan of the RV-7/8, but have been smitten with the RV-14 since the first pictures were released a while back. More on the -14 later...

I would like to post a list of questions that have been resurfacing in my recent discussions and research. I have found many answers through the search function on VAF, so I apologize for any repeats and I will try to define my questions with previously read content in mind.

Here we go- most questions will be RV in general, or geared toward an RV-14 build.

1. Water Intrusion. The RV-14 is offered in Tip-Up only, I have flown RV's of both canopy categories and I prefer the look of the Slider (), but the tip up will be great in a -14. Regarding water intrusion, should I worry about leaving a tip-up on the flight line for a few days in the rain? (XC, camping, etc).
With water intrusion in mind, are there any other hot spots that warrant attention in an RV? Is it common to seal the empennage/wing roots to prevent any possibility of intrusion?

2. Ejection Handles. I've seen a few -14s with AND without canopy release handles on the panel. I understand the purpose, but are the one without a panel mounted handle simply relocated, or omitted?

3. Flap operation. Do most builders elect to go with a momentary contact switch for flaps that select a predetermined (programmed) flap position? Or is a "push and hold" to select position more common? I can see benefits to both (capability/simplicity), but would be interested to hear some praise toward the preset flap position options. Especially if they're stick mounted!  continue


Van's annual banquet at Oshkosh - Keynote speaker Nigel Speedy


2018 OSH RV-10 Dinner & Social 7/22

RV-10 flyers, builders and wannabes Save the Date. We will again be hosting an RV-10 OSH gathering on 7/22 (Sunday before the show) starting late afternoon or early evening and running until ??? According to our records, this will be the 11th annual OSH RV-10 dinner extravaganza... Exact location in Camp Scholler, start time, etc. will be provided about a week prior. Setup & cleanup help welcome but both should be “minimal”.

Start the countdown, 31 days from today!


FS: Eagle's Nest Projects RV-12 / N911EN

Looking for a very nice RV-12... this is it!

Clear Springs High School (TX) is working on their 5th Eagle's Nest RV-12 and this aircraft, their 3rd build, is being sold to fund its completion. Because the VAF community has been very generous and supportive of the Eagle's Nest high school aircraft build program, we're making this is a private offering before it's listed elsewhere.


RV-3B Status Report ...David Paule

The Titanium layer on the forward belly has a portion that needed to be rounded to be part of a more efficient cooling air exit than the stock design. In this view, it’s already partly bent. I just grabbed one end of the pipe with Channel Lock pliers and rolled it up. The pipe, of course, was taped to the Titanium.  ...




In addition to Superior Air Parts, RAM Aircraft, CamGuard, Hartzell Propeller, Aviation Product Services and others will host presentations July 23rd through 28th during Oshkosh AirVenture 2018. Attendees will receive a free electronic copy of Engine Management 101 by Superior’s V.P. product support, Bill Ross.

Coppell, TX (June 11, 2018) — Scott Hayes, vice president, sales and marketing for Superior Air Parts, Inc., announced today that the company is again hosting its series of 45-minute educational forums during Oshkosh AirVenture 2018.

Joining Superior Air Parts in the 2018 Oshkosh Forum Series are RAM Aircraft, Hartzell Propeller, CamGuard, Don’s Dream Machines, Aviation Product Services and others are scheduled to present educational sessions during the daily sessions at Superior’s Oshkosh tent #257.

The company has posted a complete schedule of the 2018 Forums here.

“Oshkosh 2017 was a fantastic year for the Superior forum series. I can’t think of any of the 18 forums that weren’t packed by pilots wanting to know how they can operate their engine more efficiently and save money on maintenance,” Hayes said.

“Sharing this kind of valuable information is exactly why we created the forum series,” he said. “Each session will give pilots and owners proven procedures and insights that will help them reduce the cost of flying while extending their engine’s operational life and lowering maintenance costs.”

Superior’s vice president of Product Support, Bill Ross, who has been an FAA A&P/IA for 33-years, will serve as presenting host the 2018 Forum Series.

“These sessions are not about theory or opinions,” Ross said. “What we are going to deliver are sessions packed proven information that the other presenters and I have gained over our various careers. These are practices and tips pilots can use every time they fly.

The free, 45-minute Forum sessions will be held daily at the Superior Air Parts tent (#257), which is just north of Hangar B. Forum times are 9:30, 11:00 and 12:30, Monday, July 23rd through Saturday, July 28th.

In addition to all the other valuable information, forum attendees will receive a free digital copy of Bill Ross’ popular 144-page book, “Engine Management 101.”

For more information and complete forum schedule, visit here .


Pic from 'Mr. X'

Zion NP ...click to enlarge



June 21, 2018.   Issue #4,592.
  The Tater got his wisdom teeth out Wednesday afternoon.  That ($2,171), two colonoscopies (me/wife), an endoscopy (wife), fuel pump on the wife's car and more has turned June into a real testicle buster.  5K+ out of pocket above normal expenses.  I will absolutely be glad when this month is over!  A few very nice folks have asked about OSH in the last few days over email.  Sorry but not going this year - Cash Flow 101.  Perfect financial storm - we're going tight for a good while.  .2s and .3s if and when.
  Tate is doing fine, BTW.  Wendy's Frosty, applesauce and lots of video games.  Ice cream in the freezer.
  67% humidity, zero wind mostly and a H.I. of O.M.G.*F made for a sticky Wednesday.  Not much flying going on.
  I gotta go buy a Frosty for my son now.  Have a good Thursday.


Look what happened to me! ...scsmith RV-8

 This happened on Friday flying down to Calaveras Co airport.


Rudder damage-repair or replace?

Last week, we were on our way from Logan, UT - KLGU to the AOPA Fly-in at KMSO and stopped overnight to visit a friend in Lewiston, ID - KLWS. The plane was parked and tied down with rudder, aileron and elevator locks in place when a big storm came thru overnight in the opposite direction of the usual prevailing wind (from the tail of the plane). The gust lock (a u-shaped wire) was turned into a pretzel and the wire severed at the rudder. The rudder suffered a hole on the left side from being driven against the elevator and a dent on the right from the same problem. The bottom six rivets in the trailing edge were ripped loose leaving the holes on the left larger than those on the right so it can't just be riveted back together. We patched it up enough to get back to KLGU but the question now is whether to repair the damage or just order a new rudder kit and replace the rudder? We didn't build the plane so building a rudder would be a first effort. It is flyable now with Gorilla tape over the hole and temporary bolts to hold the trailing edge together. Reskining seems like more work than building new. Advice??




Pic from Mr. X

...Vail, CO


O360 running rough

Any suggestions, please. Spend a small fortune already.
Lycoming O-360 (200 hrs SMOH)
Two partial engine failures. Max rpm at full throttle 1300. Fortunately I was over an airfield both times.

On advice I overhauled the:

Blow by’s all above 77.


Starts easy
Idles smoothly
Advance throttle to above 1300 rpm, runs rough.
Stays running rough at idle.

Some say:

It’s the mags
Others say, overahualed carb is the problem
Have you checked the ignition

Even the mechanics are confused, hence my reaching out.

Any suggestions would be highly appreciated. (Getting expensive). Want to avoid pulling the engine.

Thank you


Status Report: RV-3B ...David Paule

Here's the titanium belly overlay in place. Nothing unusual about this except that the .063 spacers in the middle area under it are forcing it to lay in a mild compound curve, since the perimeter lays flat on the aluminum belly. I just clecoed it on so that I could verify that indeed, this works.




June 20, 2018.   Issue #4,591.
  Charity cap sighting at the roller derby last Saturday night.  Our airport manger Rob Reece's wife Shannon is on a local team - her character's name: French Hiss.  She's #1111 in this pic.  I had to look up the rules beforehand on Youbagbookoogle (link).  A vid for everything apparently...and it explained it well.
  It was kinda like going to a soccer game with the parents on the sidelines, but the kids were adults.   Rocky Horror Picture Show on skates.  KISS meets WWE.  There is a theatrical component and they play it up.
  We had a good time.


Milestone ...Ron Gawer

Today, my RV12 passed its airworthiness inspection; it was so easy that it was almost anti-climatic to the 711 hours I spent crafting the little bird. So, now it’s on to flying.


Tosten Grip in RV7-

Q: I'd like to put Tosten Grips in my 7 but reading all the post re panel clearance I'd like to see some pics of what you have done to address this problem in a 7. Most of the posts concern RV10, but as you know they have a different stick configuration. Send me a PM with your email and I'll reply to your email if sending pics via email is easier. Thanks. Robert

A: Just take the standard length of the Van's stick tubing and subtract off the length of the new Tosten grip above its mount and that is how much to cut off. You can even go a bit lower. Just make sure you clear the controls with the panel and subpanel for the throttle/mixture/etc. 2-3 inches is not enough to clear the panel.


Spin. Engine quits. Why? ...Moscow

I tried long spin in my 7A recently. After 3 or 4 turns at idle RPM slowly drops and approximately at seventh turn engine quits. My impression that spin at idle and lost engine are different. At least delay with recovery is much longer when prop stopped. I tried 4 times with the same result. I wonder why engine quits in a first place. I keep Mogas in one tank and Avgas in other. Both filled less than half for aerobatics. First I thought Mogas is to blame. I switched to Avgas with exactly same outcome. Next idea was that centrifugal force pushes gas out of intake. Once right at the moment when the engine was just about to stop I pushed throttle a little bit forward. I did not expect any reaction but it worked like in straight and level flight. I finished my 10 turns with engine running.

Next I tried to enter spin at 1000 RPM rather than at idle. I liked it. Engine kept 1000 RPM thru entire 10 turns. Recovery is faster and more predictable that at idle. So there are two important questions: why engine quits and is there any danger to enter spin at RPM a bit higher that idle? Engine is injected 360M1B.

Thanks in advance for help.

Sorry for poor English. I am from third world. We don’t waist too much money for stupid and useless things like education)) :^)
Here is a link to stopped engine: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FIOWtnijlSA


Extended Fuel ...RV-10

I've been planning a transatlantic trip to Ireland since I started building the -10. A tribute of sorts to the Irish who came before me to this great land in the knowledge that they would never return to the Emerald Isle. Anyways, here's my long-range tank installation. I designed the tank to hold 40 gallons and be easily installed and removed by one person. Fuel is plumbed into the 3rd port on the factory fuel valve. There's a small sump for the gravity feed, a finger strainer and an in-line fuel filter. A no-drip quick disconnect snaps into a fitting installed in the tunnel inside the area normally covered by the flap cover. The vent is similarly located through the tunnel and out the bottom of the fuse. A resistive sender connects to a spare channel the G3X and shows fuel level on the engine page alongside the main tanks.

The tank is secured to the rear seatback hinge and the outboard seatbelt anchors, as well as another hinge attachment, using extruded hinge, to the front edge of the seat pans. Fuel flow test results are similar to the wing tanks and flight testing shows no anomalies within the normal flight envelope. The tank weighs 43lbs with hose and fittings and the W&B station is the same as for rear passengers.

...from the RV-10 Forum


RV IAC Aerobatic Competition Standings - 2018

We have a new entry in the Sportsman competition. Charlie Teeuwsen took a first place in a field of four at the contest in Killam, Alberta, Canada this past weekend. (Killam is about 100 miles NE of Calgary.) The other three in class flew a Decathlon, a Yak 55M and a Laser 200. Charlie, who is a National IAC judge also served as one of the chief judges for the contest. Records indicate that he previously competed at the Intermediate and Advanced level but don't indicate what plane he flew. Couldn't be the RV-6??? Congratulations Charlie!

As expected, the competition at the Sportsman level is heating up. Get in on the fun. Check out the IAC competition calendar for a contest near you.



June 19, 2018.   Issue #4,590.
  Digging continues in the backyard.  Finally got to the reason the sprinkler system leaks.  Roots growing into a T-connector.  Light at the end of the tunnel...and an end to hand watering in this heat.  Ugh. 

Milestone: Finish Kit Arrives ...longranger

I took delivery of the finish kit late Saturday afternoon. On Sunday morning I had an hour or so to get started on unpacking and inventory before getting ready for Fathers Day festivities. So far I’ve found the wheel fairings, empennage fairing, wing root fairings, canopy latch bar, and some hinge material, but mostly it’s just paper. I have laid eyes on the canopy, and what appears to be the wheel kit and tires (didn’t unwrap them yet). I assume the engine mount and a bunch of hardware are buried under the canopy.


The 'New' Flying Vest

...SRU-21/P on long term loan from a buddy who used it 'overseas'

He asked if I wanted it.  Yes.  On the interwebs they talk of the pockets being used for grenades and extra ammo magazines.  I'll probably go instead for my phone, my PLB, a handheld radio, an extra camera and some candy bars.  Maybe a mirror signal and knife.  Stuff you want with you if you're upside down in a tree.  More as I figure it out.  More pics of it here.

Search 'SRU-21/P' for more info on this vest.  Lots of 'em online for sale.  Flew with it Monday a.m. and it was a nice improvement over the fly fishing vest I had.

From the interwebs...


7A Status Report ...jcarne

Oh snap, look who made some progress today! I may need to finally move them wings off to the side of my garage, things are starting to get cramped.


34th Annual Father's Day Fly-in Breakfast at Beach City Airport

Picture shows three of four 12’s at Beach City this morning for Father's Day fly-in. We got there late (9:30) and had to park out by the road. Probably 100 airplanes showed up. I wish I could have taken a picture of my iPad ForeFlight screen showing ~15 targets all converging with eight planes in the traffic pattern at the same time. Good time had by all…


Debris in my fuel tanks

I have no idea what these white flakes are or where they came from! I saw these just when I was about to fill up today. I cancelled my fuel request and will drain the tanks tomorrow and try to fish them out with some kind of long tweezers or thin needle nose pliers. Or any other tools would be good for this? I've seen these long claw-type tools, but don't know what they're called or where to get them...

These things look like paint flakes - the only thing is my plane is not painted white anywhere. The second possibility is they're pieces of teflon, but the only place where I have a *tiny* bit of teflon is around the threads on the fuel drain plugs. But I really don't think it's this either. Any ideas what these things are and how they got in my tanks? They really look like paint flakes.

I've had this plane for over two years and have never seen anything like this. I usually look inside my tanks before I fill up. I installed fuel injection in March. Last month/ about 10 hrs ago I inspected the fuel filter and it was clean. Any ideas??


7A Rebirthing Update ...kentlik

Finally got the canopy trimmed to final size! I think...Just to 320 currently


Baffle Question, #4 hotter, Question . . pict

In 20 hours of flight #4 CHT has always been hotter. It does not seem that the GAMI test points to it being out of line A/F wise.

The #2 head was blocked and un blocked with zero difference to #4.

The oil shutter was operated full open and full closed, no change in #4 CHT.

The fin flashing under the plug was reduced and dropped the diff from ~35F to ~15-20F. All other heads are within a 2F bracket.

edit: Swapped the probes from 2 & 4 and the high temp became #2 high as it was now in #4 head.

Has anyone determined that the baffle flap wrapped over the fins in the picture below has any effect? I am thinking it is the only thing left and a bit tentative to just cut it off without and external stiffener. The trouble would be worth it if anyone has data it will have an effect, though.

Any experience with this in VAF land?

[ok I admit, 15-20F is not bad, it just has me stumped. I gots to know . .



June 15, 2018.   Issue #4,588.
   Back in the saddle!  Thursday 0900 I flew the RV for the first time since last Saturday. I *tried* to hop over the KAFW and do a quick 16L ILS starting at WIGZU for a tight .2, but they were working four planes besides me, one of which a FedEx heavy. So over Justin I opted to slip out the back Jack and called up Denton for their 18 ILS instead - pattern to myself. Good practice I think to go from being set up to do one approach, throwing all that out the window, and resetting for a different airport slash approach ten miles away.  Lotsa buttons, and opportunities to muck it up.  Joined at PINCK and at mins scooted back direct 52F.


  Of note are the overshoot on the localizer (I was fast) and the sorta circular overhead break with base just over FM1171.  Flaps 1 about 90* from final and flaps 2 just lining up with the centerline….concentrated on keeping the circle a circle while honking that flap handle up (I can sometimes see in the track where I grab for flaps).  Crosswind makes the circle even more fun, and the short bursts of concentration get addictive.  Screen grabs from Garmin Pilot on the iPad below.
  It was good to get off the surface again.  I missed it.  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.



48 States in 7 Days - Day 7 ...larrynew

Day 7 - Friday, June 1st, 2018

We were up early at cousin Mark and Gayle's house with Uncle Tommy arriving at exactly 6 a.m. to cook a delicious southern breakfast including grits with Aunt Lois helping. Much better than my powdered milk and cereal in a ziplock! On the way to the airport, we visited with Jeff, cousin Laura's husband. He owns a big company that builds huge electric motor starters. We got the nickle tour and parting gifts of Yeti cups. It was super interesting to see in inner workings of a small factory. Another cousin Dwayne worked there and we visited for a few moments. Remember not being able to throw a rock without hitting a cousin? We didn't mind the somewhat slow start as the morning clouds in Florida had our destination IFR.

When we departed for Marianna, Florida (KMAI) the weather was already VFR. There were multiple helicopters making practice approaches to the field and it looked like it used to be a very large training base of some sort. We parked next to an RV but didn't go in to visit, only taking a quick picture. We were both beginning to feel that this was the last day of the trip and we need to keep pushing and finish. No so much get-home-itis but more keeping the momentum going.  ...


Vladspotting ...Dutch Harbor, Alaska

"It was nice meeting you Andy. You should bring your RV9A to Dutch Harbor. With all your busy working schedule you won’t be able to fly much though. Tom sold me 20 gallons of avgas he said he will keep a stash for us. Good people are at the airport the manager rocks!"


Houston area monthly RV lunch (June)

It's that time again! Looks like we're due to rotate back up to Hooks for some B-52 burgers. Same time as usual, 11:30, this Saturday (6-16).

I am unsure if I'll make it, as my parents are in town visiting for a couple days. Depends entirely on whether they're interested enough to want to attend and listen to the fun stories.


Finished RV-12 ...Cdenora (Mexico)

4 years in the making.  Ivo prop constant speed.  all else very much original.


Do I need to relocate my oil cooler? ...boulderick

Recently bought an RV-6A that flew first in 1995. Now that it is getting hot in Colorado, I'm having trouble with high oil temperatures. We're going through the steps I've seen in other forum posts - checking the baffles for leaks (there are some places to tighten up), checking the oil cooler for flow (expensive to have it cleaned, but we may do that), checking the oil temp sender and gauge and doing a compression test (tomorrow after work). The one thing that seems odd about this aircraft is the position of the oil cooler. It's just inside the left hand intake, mounted horizontally with a piece of 5/8" aluminum angle behind it to help direct some of the airflow through the cooler. Seems that airflow would largely bypass the cooler mounted this way. Has anyone seen this kind of configuration? Do I need to change it to the more traditional firewall mounting with a SCAT hose from the back of the engine baffles?



June 14, 2018.   Issue #4,587.
  Update on the wifey's '07 car......bad fuel pump.  New one on order now and should be back on the line in a couple days.  Easy fix and glad Audrey didn't need the Honda at grad school.  Minimal hassle for the spousal unit.

48 States in 7 Days - Day 6

The two man tent was quite cozy. We have a bigger one but this one is nice and light and was only meant as a backup for this trip. Glad we had it. Austin said he didn't sleep well as he had forgotten his eye shades and didn't want to get up to get them. We had a few good rain showers overnight with no leaks in the tent plus a nice wet airplane to make it easier to clean. For breakfast, we added cold water to my powdered milk and cereal in a ziplock that I had read about on a camping blog. They said the key was the best quality powdered milk and it was actually pretty good.

When we were finished with breakfast and almost finished packing the airplane, an older lady drove up to the fence and yelled she had unlocked the FBO for us. We finished packing and taxied the airplane over in front of the FBO and went inside to use the facilities. While washing my hands, I had an odd feeling like vertigo and worried maybe I was too tired from the trip or getting sick. Turned out the mirror was warped at the top and the peripheral reflection behind me was like a fun house mirror. Whew, crisis averted! We ended up waiting in the FBO about 30 minutes for the weather to clear. The man from last night and the lady from this morning were in the FBO with us but neither visited or even said hi. The open pilot lounge looked like the grand kid's playroom and before we left, we got the distinct impression that the couple was paid to run the FBO but didn't care much for those pesky pilots or airplanes.  ...


From the Mothership Website

"It’s that time again when we have to gauge our costs and make adjustments to our kit prices. We have viewed intently into our crystal ball and have determined that our loyal customers will keep the sales level high enough to warrant this minimal increase. Thanks to all of our customers who keep us flying!”


Input Needed ...Av8torTom

Hello - I'm starting to think about the layout of my panel. Will be VFR, day/night. I'm thinking one 10" and one 7" Dynon, but not married to any manufacturer at this point. Input greatly appreciated. Also, where are most people placing their main electrical bus in the 9A?


Cowl flap thoughts ...crabandy

I think I’ve seen/googled most of the ideas out there when it comes to cooling the lycoming in the summertime. I’m sure there are many more out there that I haven’t seen. I’ve done a decent amount of work with inlets/plenum/sealing and lastly ignition timing for temp control. Most people seem to be concerned with climb out CHT’s. I currently have no issues climbing out on a hot day, I have issues taxiing after a quick turn on a hot day and I’m carbureted. CHT’s and oil temps are fine but fuel seems to be boiling, erratic chugging during taxi. Idle mixture is correct and an excessively lean mixture and RPM’s above 1000 help.

With my stock cowling I used to see heat radiating out of the upper inlets while fueling. I don’t see it with my sealed inlet boots. During ground operations the pressure diff between the upper cowl and lower cowl is very small. How many people pop the oil door open after they land in hot temps?

Most cowl flaps are installed in conjunction with the lower outlet, I’ve stared at this space on my cowling for months trying to come up with ideas. I’ve shrunk and contoured my exit to approximately 35 sq inches, not a lot of room for a cowl flap with a vertical induction carb and 2 exhaust pipes.

I’ve also been staring at the rear of my upper cowling, what about an upper cowl flap, similar to the old 30’s cars/trucks had in front of the windshield? With the low pressure diffs on the ground it would take advantage of convection in addition to a larger exit area during climb out. I kept hoping for an easy test without months of work and downtime.

I’m currently finishing an oil change and making room behind the upper engine mount to possibly add an upper cowl flap when it dawned on me, why don’t I spend 2 minutes and remove the oil door and go fly several quick turns? On 4 cylinder lycomings the oil door is behind the upper plenum and part of the lower cowling volume/pressure. Roughly 5x5 (25 sq in) in the upper cowling that is convection friendly on the ground, also pretty easy for anyone else to test fly and and see what kind of cooling the extra exit area gives them.


7A Rebirthing Status Report ...jcarne

Priming and riveting of the rear bulkheads is all done. Now on to the longerons!


Just Cant Stop (even at full lean!)

This is pertaining to an IO360-A1A injected engine with the RSA fuel servo.

I think Gremlins broke into my hangar. I just performed a routine oil and filter change after installing silicon rocker cover gaskets and a new oil quick drain. I touched nothing else. Before re-installing the cowl I ran the engine and allowed the oil to heat up in order to check for oil leaks. After reaching 170 degrees, I pulled throttle to idle and mixture to full lean to stop the engine. The engine wouldn't stop! It just kept on purring like a kitten. No real roughness, etc. Without giving it a lot of thought, I just switched the magnetos off in order to kill the engine. My first thought was that the lean cable came loose somewhere and lost adjustment.

I checked the linkages along with the local IA. Everything looks good. When lean is pulled, the lever on the fuel servo goes all the way to the stop. A fair amount of fuel (more than usual) drained out of the sniffle valve from the sump. It had to be a fluke! Went to restart engine. It was very hard to start (which is unusual for my experience with this engine. Remember that I killed it by grounding the magnetos so fuel was still going into the cylinders since I cant get shutoff at full lean). Once started, and smoothed out, I pulled lean and saw EGTs go up. I then pulled full lean and it kept right on running. I killed the engine this time by shutting the fuel off.

I had AirFlow Performance Overhaul my servo and basically replaced the full injection system with new parts and lines, restrictors, etc. back at the start of the year.

Am I missing anything here or is this a call to Airflow to troubleshoot? I am not aware of any additional adjustments for Idle shutdown other than making sure the lean lever on the fuel servo goes all the way against the stop.

Your input is appreciated!



52F Fish Fry

...Phil cranked up the fryer, Jackie made some coleslaw and Liz and John brought the brownies.  Around 25 ended up eating the crappie Randy, Phil and Clayton caught not too long ago, and the usuals had a nice opportunity to hang out with a cooling breeze and RVs in the background.

RV Life...


Pic from Mr. X ....Golden Gate (left) / SF (right)



June 13, 2018.   Issue #4,586.

Tate earning some extra summer money out at 52F Tuesday.


Vladspotting ...Dutch Harbor, Alaska

"Thank you for tracking guys. Made it to my planned destination Dutch Harbor, Alaska. The trip could not be possible without help from all my friends. Thank You! The trusty RV took another beating and survived. Will be heading back leasurely when weather improves. Looking forward to see you Andy."


Osprey question

So I returned to my home base at New Kent (W96, Richmond, VA USA) the other day to find that a V-22 Osprey was doing touch-and-goes. Or whatever you would call it when a tilt-rotor aircraft practices landings.

The V-22 is just a flat-out amazing aircraft. I was going to join the pattern and land so that I could watch it in action, but then it occurred to me: what is the wake turbulence like from those things?!?

Fearing it might be extra nasty, I motored on for some additional sight-seeing elsewhere.

Any theories on how much room to give to a V-22?


48 States in 7 Days - Day 5

Next stop was eventually Petersburg, West Virginia (W99). Leaving the low weather coast and flying west, we had to avoid the huge DC SFRA airspace and some weather while we were looking for a destination where we could spend the night. Petersburg listed "on airport camping" which sold us. After landing, we searched for the camping area and saw what looked like it but was outside the high barb-wired fence with a locked gate. Then we saw a large mowed field adjacent to the taxiway with a bridge over the ditch that looked just like the new "island" parking area in Home Built Camping at Oshkosh. Looked perfect to us and we were the only ones around so who could care. We pitched our campsite and Austin went in search of electricity around the closed FBO to heat water for our camping dinner. During his search, an older gentleman drove up and said we weren't supposed to camp there. Austin said he told him the airport listed "on airport camping" and that the other place wasn't "on the airport" or even accessible. He grumbled something and left but we stayed put.


Update: June 10, 2018 Trip to Seward, Alaska ...mbauer

Saturday June 9th, a visitor stopped by the Kenai Airport (PAEN). Most of you will know who it is by checking out this photo of his RV-9A and my RV-6 parked at the Transient Parking Apron here in Kenai.  ...


Will you please critic my process/approach please

I really like the idea of painting before first flight and since I have not found a suitable painter, I have decided to tackle it myself. I hope I don’t end up regretting this decision.
So far, I have done much of the fiberglass work to a near paint ready stage, this is all except the cowl.
My choice of paint is a car type paint (base/clear) and I believe either Valspar or PPG would be the MFG but I like to get more info and recommendation on the MFG.
So far, the process in my head is to
- Wash clean and sand (150-180 Grid) the bare aluminum/fiberglass parts
- Take care of any of the imperfection, rivet gun smiles, with Evercoat Metal glaze and sand to feather edge
- Clean the area to be painted with acetone thoroughly
- Prime with Transtar 2K DTM primer then sand with 600 grid to get all the minor defects
- Primer- Seal with the same primer, Transtar 2K but different mixture
- Paint with base coat within the specified time (about a day) after sealer has been applied.
- Apply clear coat within the specified time after base coat

Any other prep work on the bare metal is needed?
How important is to do the sealer if the primer is smooth and ready. Will just sanding be sufficient for adequate adhesion and bonding?


Finished RV-7 Pics ...vinigrando


RV IAC Aerobatic Competition Standings - 2018

Four RV pilots competed this weekend in two separate contests. Jerry Esquenazi and Randy King dominated the Sportsman category at the Southeast Aerobatic Championships in Rome, Georgia taking second and third place among a very competitive field of twelve. Bill McLean had a good thing going for the first two flights in the Intermediate category but faltered in the third flight. (You don't get to count the best two out of three!)

Still to report is David Schmitz who is competing int Salem, Illinois this weekend. Weather has delayed the contest and we are still waiting for final results. More news to follow...


From Mothership FB Page



June 12, 2018.   Issue #4,585.
  Colonoscopy went well.  Zero polyps.  One hemorrhoid caught, banded, tagged and released w/tracker.  Still sleepy and have (not medically trained) a condition I choose to call 'Butt Fire'.  Taking it easy.
  See you Wednesday. 


June 11, 2018.   Issue #4,584.
  Saturday morning 0720 I flew down to Lancaster, TX airport to eat breakfast. Checked in with approach and got cleared into Class B (hoping for a flight over the top of KDFW). Didn’t get it and the restaurant was closed (vacation) if you can believe my awesome luck. ;^)  Used the powder room and hopped back in the plane. Called up approach again and this time asked for a ‘photo pass over KDFW’. Granted! Flew over my old workplace in Las Colinas, then over the top of DFW from east to west at 4,000’. Jets taking off and landing underneath me. How cool! I took a few pictures, landed, texted Monk to see if he was around (0830) and we drove over to Justin for breakfast at the Lonesome Spur. Everything turned out fine, and I finally got to overfly KDFW after nearly 16 years of having a flying RV.
   Tuesday’s edition might be a little watered down (pun). I have my first colonoscopy scheduled for Monday. Pushing out (again w/the puns) the Monday edition early so I can take the prep med that turns my Estes 1/4A3-3T into a Saturn V F-1. I talked with Monk about saving some money with the camera he uses to inspect engine valves with, but no dice.
  Hope you had a nice weekend and I’ll let you know if the doc finds my head.

PS: If you’re my age and haven’t had a colonoscopy yet, read this.
PSS: The new recommendation to begin screening is age 45


48 States in 7 Days - Day 2 ...larrynew RV-7A

Day 3 | Day 4


Build Status ...RV7ForMe

So on the second attempt I had to push the lip up while pulling the pop riveter.

Worked out in the end but cost me about 30 min and was completely unnecessary. Wont be doing that again on the right flap!


First Start ...Claude Pitre

After fixing a couple small issues discovered while pre-oiling my zero time IO-320, we got it started up for the first time. Does that ever make it feel like an airplane, don't have to make my own airplane noises anymore. A couple of minor squawks, lost my oil pressure sensor after start - came back after shutdown, probably a loose connection. I've got a bit of fuel leak at my fuel flow transducer and my #4 CHT sensor is offline. Unfortunately, my left fuel sender is still stuck on empty. The local guy that I had build my engine was pretty pleased with it, so that pleases me lots. Only ran it for a few minutes, we'll give it another start in a few days after fixing the issues we discovered. Planning my final inspection for the week after next and if that goes well, the RV-9 counter will be jumping up by 1 in early July.


RvPilotLife_TR#2 ...Josh 9A

I recently had the pleasure of flying twice to Madison to see Guil’s 9a project. We also flew around. The trip up this last time had some incredible cloud formations. Did a quick blog on it. Hope you enjoy!


Razor Blade Trick ...snopercod

So today I used the razor blade trick to taper down the new paint. It worked pretty well but I have two recommendations. First, putting the razor blade in a vice and using a steel rod to curl over the edge seemed to work better than the 600 grit. I tried it both ways. Second, be sure to put a small piece of tape on the side facing you because it's almost impossible to tell which edge has the curl.


Early heads up....Ironflight's 60th birthday (Louise post)

Save the date! We will have a birthday breakfast/brunch fly-in at our place (A34) in Dayton Valley Airpark, Nevada, on September 22nd. 8 am to noon. No presents. All VAFers are welcome.

Obviously, more information closer to the date.


Build Update ...David Paule -3B

After making the titanium belly overlay, I clecoed it in place. Forward is to the left. That overhanging part is to allow for a rounded entry for the air exit.


Build Update (RV-10)...1001001



June 8, 2018.   Issue #4,583.
  Got Susie’s car towed to the hangar with the help of a friend's trailer and Rob Reece's 'Optimus Prime' truck (OP).  Troubleshooting soon, and thank goodness for friends.
  Tate's summer began Thursday afternoon.  He's washing OP Friday for $$$ and interviewing for an airport mowing position (air conditioned cab).
 Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.

New Pilot

...Laura Starkey.   "...this would have been my dad’s 98th birthday. He was my inspiration as a child to fall in love with flying. He was a WW2 Navy pilot whose love for flying rubbed off on me! Took his navy logbook with me on the flight today. Dedicated to my dad’s memory!!!"

(Mike Starkey's better half - you know Mike....the unofficial VAF greeter ;^) ).  Congratulations Laura!!!!! (link)


Day 2

Sunday, May 27th, 2018

Up early for our second official day of the trip. The Travelodge was quiet and comfy and we got a good night's sleep after watching NBA basketball. After a drive-through breakfast of McDonald's bacon, egg and cheese biscuits it was an easy drive back to the airport. Today will take us to California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana and North Dakota. Here are the bomb bunkers leaving Hawthorne


Best way to fix this dumb mistake?

....his words.  While working on the flap positioner, running the flaps up, the plug on an extension cord wedged between the flap and upper skin resulting in these dents. Don't really have a way to get inside the flap to push it out, so was wondering if anyone had some repair suggestions?


jamesdavid <$100 Arduino/Bluetooth/GoPro Mount Sensor Pod

Last year, for EAA's Founder's Innovation Prize competition, I made a < $100 sensor pod with an Arduino variant connected to a differential pressure sensor, with Bluetooth to an iOS App. The general idea was that the pod would attach to a GoPro style mount and provide pitot static data to an iOS device and cost about as much as a "Stratux" DIY device, but for pitot-static and other flight data instead of ADS-B.

I did not get selected by the EAA -- other similar things were selected to present during AirVenture. However, other than the $2000 Levil BOM Pod, I have not seen anything further in this space, and nothing further from the other EAA Founders Prize Finalists.

I have not tested it in flight (I just got a steam-gauge RV-6A that I may try this out on once I get transition training and comfortable with the airplane), but, when I saw this thread, I figured I would share this for educational/discussion purposes here:


More Pics from 'Big Toot' First Flight Wednesday


Five Hour Phase One ...Iron

Yesterday I completed the shortest Phase 1 flight testing program I have ever done - it was for a neighbor's ELSA RV-12, an airplane I have been watching him build for the past five years.  ...



June 7, 2018.   Issue #4,582.

Milestone: 5,000 Hours ...turbo RV-6A

i finally passed the 5,000 hour mark on my trip yesterday from FL to CT. it was a great flying day of mostly vfr wx and some ifr challenges in the NY-CT area but my old faithfull rv did it again and again and again. thought i would catch the hobbs turning over and get a screen shot or note where i was but it didn't happen. landed about 4 tenths later at mount olive NC, w40, rnav 05 coupled ap synthetic vision in severe clear conditions. squeeked it on as usual, rolled to mid field and turned off. topped off with 31 gallons and continued as usual. glad you are all here to share the moment. be safe out there and enjoy those blue skys and wet clouds.
see you guys tomorrow at jafrey nh for lunch.


First flight

...ppowers in Kingsport, TN.  RV6 N46WP flew for its first flight today.


Day 1 - Saturday, May 26th, 2018 ...larrynew

We departed Dumas, Texas early on the first official day of our attempt to visit 48 states in 7 days. Today, we visited Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and spent the night in Nevada.  ...


Can’t get oil gurgle after 10 months idle ...Jim McCarter RV-12

My RV-12 Rotax 912 has not been started for 10 months while doing ACI, brake job, satisfying SB’s, etc. l recently thought it would be a good idea to turn the prop by hand to pump the oil back into the oil canister. (A fresh oil change was done just before my final flight 10 months ago). Well, the first thing I noticed when I started turning the prop was that the engine compression seemed low. I kept turning the prop - about 100 revs - and I never could get the “gurgle”. Can someone explain what is going on an tell me what to do. I don’t intend to try starting the engine until I’m sure everything is back to normal.


‘Big Toot’ Flies ...

Not RV, but neat and close to home!  I had the distinct pleasure of witnessing the Tommy Meyers and Phil Witt designed Big Toot’ put air under its tires for the first time.  S/N 1 aviated Wednesday morning at 52F around 0630 with Gary Platner at the controls.  Randy Richmond flew chase in an RV-8 with me as ballast.  Took a few pics while Randy and Gary talked about more important stuff (anything falling off?, etc).  Some teaser shots while I process the take.  I'll have a folder up later in the week.

Congratulations Tommy, Phil, Gary and the rest of the gang who helped this become reality. 

'Little Toot' now has a brother...

related: www.littletootbiplane.com


First Post, Couple of Questions on RV-10

Hi folks,

So I haven't yet made the official jump on purchasing a kit. From what I can tell I think we (it'll be a family affair) will be ready to start in about 2 years. I'm gathering as much research as possible to help prepare ourselves for the marathon ahead.

A little about my family and I: My wife loves flying and so do my two little ones (2.5y/o twins (boy and girl)). My son is OBSESSED with airplanes (he wears my GA magazines out before I can read them) and my wife wants to get her PPL. We take up our AA5B Tiger about twice a month to get pancakes and during the cooler months we fly to CA to visit the in-laws and my brother and sister-in-law (2 hrs flying vs 5.5 driving). I'm a corporate pilot by trade and have a ton of free time on my hands (kids take a lot of that up for now). I'm also an A&P and really enjoy working on my airplane when the need arises. As an aside I went to A&P school after the Air Force and I noticed that I really excelled in sheet metal and thoroughly enjoyed working with it (composites were okay), which really led me down the RV route versus Velocity. My mission requirement is a 4 place aircraft with the range to make most of the west coast possible from AZ (including over mountain treks). I honestly believe the Vans community is where I want to hang my hat with and I look forward to pressing on with a family project.

A couple of questions:

1. Does someone have actual experience to compare the AA5B and the RV-10? Numbers clearly look superior for the RV-10 in terms of speed and payload, how do they differ in flying?

2. How do you successfully finance the build? I know I can sell my AA5B for around $65k, of which I have around $35-40k in equity. I'm a corporate pilot (in light jet category) so I don't make 20 year Delta Airlines pay, but I do okay and the future is bright in terms of compensation growth. How much can you finance? I understand the RV-10 will cost around $120-160k to build out the door, I'll likely go with the slow build because my wife wants to be a big part of the project and we can save some there. I know I'll want a EFIS IFR panel, but I'm okay with a modular approach to avionics.

3. Has anyone built an RV with their little ones? I'd like to shoot around 4.5-5y/o for my kids to start to help. I'm sure my son would be super interested and I'd like to get my daughter hooked on something STEM related at a young age. Obviously I'm planning on them being 8-9 by the time we are finished (assuming a 3-4 year build time).

4. Any pieces of sage advice to give to someone who is planning on a build with the family? I'm sure there's quite a few out there who had the chance to build with their family members.

5. Anyone in the Phoenix area with an RV-10 who would be gracious enough to give a demo flight? I'd happily pitch in for some fuel. I'd like to be able to compare notes and really get to know the aircraft before I start shooting rivets.


All the best,

David Marques

rel: RV-10 forum


Mystery Runway ...Vlad

Tight spot in a picturesque valley. Any idea where?



June 6, 2018.   Issue #4,581.
  Susie's car wouldn't start Tue afternoon (she volunteers at Medical City Denton) so I spent a chunk of the afternoon/evening getting her home and squared away in Audrey's Honda.   I *might* have a trailer lined up, but if that falls through I thought it a good idea to 'Ping the Force' locally for a trailer to get the car from the hospital to 52F so I can work on it (17.9 miles - map at right).  A guess is fuel pump - 240,000 miles.  Let's hope that simple <g>.
  Unrelated, the VERY nice sunrise we had in DFW Tuesday - took two pics before driving out to the field.  1 / 2.  


Ground Shot ...Simon remembering a friend.


First Flight  ...Robert M

As of 8am this morning, (June 5), RV-9 N556RM, made its first flight at the Chester Catawba Regional airport in South Carolina.

The plane performed as expected for a Van's Aircraft - perfect!

Wind was from the North at 4mph, temperature was 65 degrees, barometric pressure was 29.89. Took off, climbed to pattern altitude at 100mph, made the turns in the pattern, throttled back, flaps at 80mph, got 70mph on final, the mains touched, very slight hop, mains back down - stuck, tail dropped a short time later, taxied back to hangar.

What a glorious day! She flies!

Started this project in April 2006, first flight 12 years and 2 months later.

'Bought dern time!


Jam nuts :( ...Vic

I am about ready to start a movement like Nancy Reagan's "just say No to drugs", only mine is going to say "Just say NO to loose jamnuts!"

I thought I had started a thread on this some time ago, but I can't find it right now, so you get to hear me again.

I performed a prebuy on an RV-10 today that has been flying for 8 years. So that's an Airworthiness inspection, and at least 7 Condition Inspections, and amongst the 800 hours, hopefully some preflights.

I found 7 loose jamnuts on the tail surfaces! They had never been tightened, as there was no scoring on the mating surfaces. I just reached in with my fingers and turned them.

So, please go check your jamnuts on your next preflights. This is a high stress area to begin with, with a SB even being issued across most of the models for cracking around the nutplate rivets. Perhaps someone on this forum can set up a poll that says "I have checked my aircraft jamnuts." It would be interesting to see if we could achieve 100% in the next year.


Added Screaming Eagle Tailwheel to Original Small RV-3 Spring

Thanks to Blake and Vince at Flyboy Accessories. I talked them into making the option to have a tailwheel socket with a smaller inside diameter so the original RV-3/4 small diameter taper springs could be modified to a full swivel Screaming Eagle tailwheel. That was about 18 months ago and I just now got around to adding the modification to my RV-3B.

The smaller ID of the socket is 33/64" yielding a thicker wall thickness of the socket as it is the same OD as the standard one. This requires machining a 2" area off of the spring to a constant 33/64" diameter to fit the socket. Flyboy also has a similar modification for the RV-4 that utilizes the standard socket as the RV-4 spring has a larger OD.  ...


Classic Aero Designs Power Outage 6/6/18

Hi Everyone,

We just got word this morning that the Power company will be replacing a power pole out here at the airport that feeds several buildings including ours. I'm not sure what to do except to try to get word out to our customers the best I can. I'm sure the city knew about this sooner than they told us, but not a lot we can do about it now.

They are saying from 9:30AM to 3:00PM PST. We moved our business to the airport about 10 years ago, and we've never had anything like this before

If it's okay with Doug, I'll probably bump this once or twice just to let a few more of our customers know what's up.

Sorry for the inconvenience.

Luke Doughton
Classic Aero Designs


RV-4 Progress Report ...MS1095

Making progress...There has been a lot to fix along the way, but it is finally starting to come together.  ...


RV-10 Rudder Trim ...how 9GT did his

I used the hinge method with a Ray Allen servo. Hard to see in the photo but the servo is mounted on the inside of a removable access panel to the left of the threaded rod fairing. I installed during the build but it still would be an EZ retrofit to a flying plane with minimal paint touch-up. IIRC I used about 10" of hinge and That would give a little over a full ball either side. I found it an invaluable accessory on my -10, especially with various loading and winds aloft.


Plane Ownership & Complacency

I see this often since I spend so much time now at the airport hanger working on my -9A. (KGDW is a very nice rural airport but has little activity) I see so many pilots who own their own planes do a VERY limited pre-flight inspection, if they even bother to do one at all! Last weekend on Sunday took the cake for me. I could not believe what I had witnessed. The owner drove in, opened his hanger, pulled out his plane, (not an EXP), closed his hanger up, hopped in, started his engine and immediately began to taxi. He did not even bother to use the taxi-way. Cut across the grass to the runway and just took off. No pre-flight inspection, no run-up or mag check,,,,nothing! Not even a radio call! About an hour later an incoming plane announces his position and intentions and advises their is a second incoming plane with inoperative radio, his buddy who took off earlier. I think a lot of people who own their own planes feel since they are the only ones flying the plane, they know it well enough to get away with this type of stuff. Wrong!


Pic from 'Mr. X'

...Charlotte, NC



FOD Walk Take ...52F 6/5/18 0800 (Monk and me)



June 5, 2018.   Issue #4,580.

Interesting 'Follow Me' Vehicle

Michael...RV-10 HB-YNN (Switzerland)
"I took the family in our RV-10 to Bologna/Italy and was quite surprised to be lead by the most stylish 'follow me' car ever."

enlarge / see whole picture


48 States in 7 Days - Overview & Day 0

The Plan
With the plane finished and well tested, we wanted a signature trip. Why? The adventure, the challenge, the quality time with father and son. And, to beat our uber-competitive family members racing to visit all 50 states.

The plan was to fly to and land in all 48 lower states in our Van's RV-7A airplane and put our feet on the ground at each stop and take a picture, not just a touch and go. And do it in 7 days! In an airplane we built in the garage!!  ...


I’ve been pink-slipped! ...sbalmos

It’s a funny feeling when the day finally comes. A bittersweet feeling in a way. The end of an era. Some even say that it really is easier if it happens on a Monday rather than a Friday. And after 6.5 years in this same position, I had a feeling this event would happen to me at one point or another. I guess it really is time to move on and try out a new title.



RV Builder/Pilot Gets Interviewed About Previous Job ...MCC Flight Director

...Paul 'Ironflight' Dye (RV-3/6/8)
"Thought that you might be interested in these - the EAA put up the video of my talk at the museum (an hour long) and the podcast audio interview “The Green Dot” that is about forty minutes. Just telling stories of MCC...."


7A 'Rebirthing' Update ...kentlik

I have a gig starting tomorrow so might be the last post for a little while, and not much of one at that.

Need to cut canopy sides about here:


Pics from ‘Mr. X’: Aspen and Leadville

Aspen (enlarge)

Leadville (enlarge)



June 4, 2018.   Issue #4,579.

First Flight Pics ...Chris Engler


RvPilotLife Trip Report #1

It was time to take the RV on it’s first x-cntry trip with my wife. We chose a shorter trip to see how she performed. It beat all our hopes and expectations, but that’s not surprising given the Vans history.

Made a little blog with a cool video descending into Chicago the way home. Hope you enjoy reading.


Milestone: Initial Wing Fitting

Another milestone: initial wing fitting. Van's matching of the QB wings and fuselage really paid off; overall it went very smoothly. Thanks to four of the PTK gang (from left to right): Curt Martin, Dave Pohl, Terry Kohler and Ted Gauthier for their able assistance.


Round the World in a RV-9A

Hello VAF:

I have been very busy preparing N944JK for her round the world (RTW) journey, and I am finally ready.

Tomorrow, I will depart Concord, CA heading east on a flight around the world in my Vans RV-9A. The route covers: US, Canada, Greenland, United Kingdom, Italy, Greece, Jordan, Bahrain, UAE, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, Vanuatu, American Samoa, Kiribati, Hawaii and Concord. The first leg will be non-stop 1500 nm from Concord, CA to Oshkosh, WI.

The plane was completed in 2015 and it took 9 years to build. It has flown 280 hours since then and has visited 17 states and Oshkosh in 2016.

I wish to thank the following RTW pilots: Jon Johanson (RV-4), Manuel Queiroz (RV-6) , Hank Cheng (RV-8) and William Randolph (RV-8) for providing inspiration, guidance, and answering my many questions about preparation and the logistics of flying around the world. Many RV pilots at Concord (KCCR) also helped me along the path: Ed Neffinger, Bill Black, and Ernst Freitag. Thank you!

My web site and blog are located at: https://memoryflightrtw.weebly.com

If any VAF members are around, I would be delighted to meet you when I pass through KOSH or KMPV.

I will try my best to update you as I go.

At this stage, the plan is as follows (U.S.):

June 1-2: KOSH (Oshkosh, WI)
June 3: KMPV (Montpelier, VT)
June 5: KBGR (Bangor, ME)

I hope meet some of you en-route!

John Koehler


Charity Hat Sighting: Day Job Video

This is basically my day job, so watch for the hat sighting in our little video produced for a Microsoft Developer Conference we just had:

related: About the Charity Cap


Milestone: First Start

First start today, woohoo!

Fairly uneventful except there was an odd CHT/EGT issue on #3.

In the first 10-15 seconds the CHT shot up to 1000 degrees then a big red X appeared.

The EGT never went above 400 #3.

All the others leveled right out as expected.

The physical temps by touch were about the same for #3 as the others, didn't have a temp gun with me.

If it was just one of the sensors I would think just a bad sensor/wiring problem but both is throwing me off.

Does anyone have any suggestions or ideas before I start troubleshooting?

Not very helpful but here's a pic after I shut it down and was cooling, the sensor recovered, didn't think to take a pic while it was running.


Follow on video, first year and paint

I forgot to post this last week....if anyone is interested, I have a follow on video to the documentary about building the RV-12. This covers my first year of flying, including some upgrades to the plane and the painting process. This one is only 18 minutes, so people are much less likely to fall asleep


RV-Lancair Brotherhood Day

The monsoon season finally let up after two weeks of solid rain, so Darwin and I took the opportunity to fly to GMU for lunch and to get some photos with the EAA B-17:


Public Service Announcement about buying airplane "parts". ...Mel Asberry

Recently there have been notices for sale of "parted out" aircraft being sold without registration and/or airworthiness certificates. Be aware that, with the possible exception of Experimental-Exhibition, there is currently no path to legally "recertify" an aircraft of this type.

To certificate an amateur-built aircraft, one must show proof that more than 50% of the aircraft was built by amateurs. An ELSA would not meet this requirement.

To certificate as an ELSA, one must show documentation from the kit manufacturer, that the aircraft was built from a certified ELSA kit (by serial number).

A few of the parts from an aircraft of this type might be used on an amateur-built aircraft but some sort of proof of compliance with the 51% rule must be shown.


AirVenture 2018 Homebuilt Patch Honors Van’s Aircraft


Pic from 'Mr. X'

...Canyon El Grande




June 1, 2018.   Issue #4,578.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend.

Sam Daniels and daughter enjoying the 6A.  52F.


Rusty pilot with dusty RV-6 seeks advice/assistance

Hi all,
I am a longtime lurker who finds myself with more free time than I’ve had in years … time to (finally!) once again become proficient, well equipped, and start chasing some long-deferred dreams.

First the pilot … I earned my ticket 30 years ago, flew a hundred hours or so, then jobs, family, houses, moves, kids in college happened. Now – newly retired, with the last kid a senior in college I have the time and money to reconnect with the wonderful world of aviation. I have recently earned a Glider rating and am having fun learning to fly again. I have virtually no tail-wheel time and will be essentially starting over with an instructor in power craft soon. I live in Tampa, FL.

Next, the plane … a very nice, basic, RV-6 with an fixed pitch 0-320 and a full panel of lovely steam gauges inherited from my father. Its an original slow build constructed lovingly by my father and a partner … both now “gone west”. First flight – and Phase I flown off in 2009 and 2010. My father’s medical condition prevented further enjoyment. The plane has been in (careful) storage since … pulled out occasionally for a ground run to move the oil around. It was maintained in annual until 2016, but now needs a battery and Condition Inspection (and I hope not too much else other than a pilot!). The plane lives (for now) at an air park near Houston. Documentation is complete in all respects.

Finally, the plan…
1). Get the future pilot (me) competent with an instructor in/near Tampa … ideally in a tailwheel equipped trainer.
2). Complete a condition inspection in Houston. Ideally with someone well experienced with RV’s. While I provided occasional help bucking rivets, my father built the plane (his second after a previous Long-EZ) with a building partner. I see the workmanship as good to excellent, but don’t feel either competent or well positioned to judge. My primary interest is to be sure the plane is safe and also possibly learn what improvements might be made (or more modern options may be beneficial).
3). Have a competent pilot ferry the plane from Houston to Tampa.
4). Complete transition training in an RV6 – Ideally this one (!) if there is a willing and competent instructor in the area – or in another RV with an instructor experienced in transition training.
5). Hours consumed VFR happily turning avgas into smiles, pursuit of the $100 hamburger, maybe share the RV grin with a few young eagles.

If you’ve bothered to read this far, you can help with:
a). Any advice, suggestions, or encouragement – I appreciate fully that I have MUCH to learn.
b). Recommendations for an instructor near Tampa – bonus points if he/she would be interested in ferrying the plane, double points if willing and able to provide transition training in it once here.
c). Recommendations for someone to do an (extensive) Condition Inspection in Houston and make recommendations – beyond clear airworthiness needs if any – on how the plane could be improved/made safer/more reliable. Major enhancements (eg Glass panel) not anticipated.
d). Recommendations for transition training in/near Tampa. Is it feasible to find an RV experienced CFI that would be willing to do instruction in my plane? Is this insurable? Is a LOA required?

Recommendations of third parties appreciated via the forum for all to see, interested principals are welcome to PM me directly if preferred.

Thanks in advance,


June Wallpaper Calendar

I went artsy fartsy this month....how the shadow adds depth and character to the fuselage made my eyebrow lift.  From the 'VAF Drone' at the cave.  BTW, this RV-8A is for sale by a person at my field.  Call Randy Richmond (817) 4 Zero 1 - 8 Zero Nine 6 if interested for pics and more (specs).

"It's difficult to enter into this work because of how the optical suggestions of the facture notates the distinctive formal juxtapositions." - Instant Art Critique Phrase Generator (link)



Mashy and Monk's 0700 finds in 'FOD 1'. 


A more comfortable ride in turbulence-

Although I'm hopeful that the current round of physical therapy will help my spinal issues, there's no hope that my spine will ever again be good for more that 2 Gs (five level fusion, L1-L5, and additional recent symptoms). And the other day, it's newest complaint was whining in moderate turbulence (enough that the downdrafts would lift you out of the seat a little, but not slam your head into the canopy.) The sharp edged updrafts were the uncomfortable ones.

So what to do about getting a better ride in turbulence?
* I talked to the good folks at OregonAero, and their suggestion was to make sure that I wasn't slouched over in the seat. I climbed into the -9A on the ground, and guess what I was doing? Yup, was slouching, but when I sat up straight, my upper arm was pressed against the side rail;
* Fly slower. The RV-9A has adequate speed for cross country, but I'd hate to have to slow down whenever it got bumpy;
* Get a faster plane and fly it slower. That could be a -7A, -10, or -14A. I've already been spoiled by the Garmin G3X touch system for IFR, and that's $40K to replicate in a new plane. The -7A has the same fuselage as the -9A, but I could slow it down to RV-9A speeds. The one time I tried, the -10 seemed heavy enough that I probably shouldn't try pushing it on the ground. RV-10s are also pricey, as are RV-14s which are rare on the market. An -8A is a possibility, but the ride in turbulence is not good for the back seater, and I don't know that the G3X yaw damper will work on an -8A.
* Get a (horrors!) spam can with springs in the seats.

Hate to do it, but the time has come to sell the RV-8, which I love to fly. And the -9A is also a candidate for replacement if I find a reasonable alternative. At this point, however, the easiest solution is to keep the -9A and slow down in turbulence...

Anybody got any better ideas, other than turning the clock back a decade or so? Surely other folks have gone through this, or very similar...

RV-8 (steam gauges), RV-9A at KSAV (Savannah, GA; dual screen G3X with autopilot, GTN 650)
Previously RV-4, RV-8A, AirCam, Cessna 175


Seen at Richmond Aviation (Monk's) 

Cool little wire clips from Summit racing Randy is using to clean up the wiring install on an RV-8 in the shop.




RV-10 Milestone: Fuselage kit!

I received my fuselage kit yesterday and have been working my way through the inventory sheets...Now I just have to finish up these wings


Summer Office ...ENGAGE

At the Van Cave after the morning workout, I'm too lazy to move the portable cooler over to the couch.  And there is no table over there anyway, so I clamped a board to the tail lift and just use the weight bench as a chair.  Blower keeping me conscience at far left.  It's going to be 100+ all next week.

Surprisingly comfortable.  Not so much two feet to the side. 




Crosswinds! ...-12

I was landing yesterday at Byron with turbulent winds coming down off the Altamont mountains at 38 gusting to 44 KT from 200º, making runway 23 the favorable one with a crosswind component of 19-22KT. It was a bumpy landing, but mostly a non-event in the Baron.

However, I'm getting ready for my airworthiness inspection and hoping to be flying soon - which made me consider about crosswinds in the RV12. I've read other posts about it, and obviously the Van's POH that states 12 KT max crosswind and 35 max total wind.

How would you think the RV12 would handle landing in yesterdays winds on RW23?
Ron Gawer


SERVICE BULLETIN 18-05-21 for Fuel Injected Lycoming Installations

Installation of plug in fuel spider gauge port


Another "Special" RV for sale. ...Mel Asberry

Ann & I don't do much cross country any more, so the RV-6 is going up for sale. February condition inspection. Will open up for pre-buy inspection.

RV-6 Tip-Up $73,500
Built by Mel & Ann Asberry, 1989-1993.
1126 hrs. TT, Empty weight 1040 lbs., Day/Night VFR., NDH.
Lycoming O-320-E3D, 9.5:1 compression, Roller rocker arms, (Aprox 172 hp).
850 SMOH, Dual impulse mags, Service bulletins complied with. Feb 2018 Annual.
Catto 3-bld w/NLE & Screwless Spinner, 2 spare props, Catto 3-bld (climb), Sensenich Wood.

Hotel/Whiskey Extended Range Fuel Tanks (47 gals total fuel).
GRT Sport EX EFIS w/Safe-Fly 2020 GPS (new).
Garmin GNC 300XL com(1)/gps, Xcom com(2), Trig transponder. ADS-B out compliant.
Electronics International engine analyzer (UBG-16), fuel flow/pressure, dual fuel level.
TruTrak Vizion 380 2 axis autopilot.
Dual Brakes. Manual Flaps and Trim. Nice canopy cover that covers cabin vents.
Awards include:
“Best All Metal” S&F, “Outstanding Homebuilt” S&F. “Grand Champion” All American Sport Aviation Fly-In. “Mechanical Excellence Award” EAA 168. and More.
Serious inquires only please.
972-784-7544 rvmel@icloud.com


May 31, 2018.   Issue #4,577.
  Heads up Texas.  TFRs 5/31 (Thu) Houston and Dallas
  Houston: 1515Z - 2015Z
  Dallas: 2015Z - 2330Z


Geysers ...Vlad the Amazing

On a Yellowstone tour. Old Faithful was still packing the steam for eruption we couldn’t wait for too long. Grand Prismatic was awesome.


Another RV8 First Flight

After 5 1/2 years the airplane and I had a near perfect first flight yesterday! Winds were calm, some rain showers had passed through and the afternoon high temps had cooled to mid 70s. After some marathon sessions at the hanger these past few weeks tweaking, checking, rechecking, by around 6:30 PM yesterday, I had that strange "there's nothing left to do" feeling so I called the camera crew (aka my wife), pushed it out of the hanger, and did the pre-flight.

Started the engine, taxied to the end of the runway, completed the mag check and takeoff checklist. With everything in the green, took the active and advanced the throttle. The airplane tracked perfectly and with about 60 mph indicated, nudged the stick back and it was airborne! The thing that surprised me the most was how solid everything felt....zero need for trim on either axis and just locked on the heading. Got to about 5000 feet in very little time and throttled back to check response at slow cruise - all good. Then slowed down to low 60s with flaps to check slow speed handling....again, completely straight and predictable. After 20 minutes or so, went back to the airport to set up an approach. Bounced a bit on the first landing (the typical pulled power to idle early and flared a bit too soon) but a blip of throttle settled it in. What amazing airplanes these are!

Went back out today and flew to a couple of local airports and filled the tanks....a couple hours in and feeling very comfortable.

One of the things I was concerned with during the build was cooling. The engine is an XP 400 but between the large oil cooler using the RV10 firewall mount and tight fitting baffles, the highest temps I've seen on climb out is around 190 (ambient temps around 80 today).

Of course some thanks are in order....first to this great community for providing the massive knowledge base to help with those head scratching moments. I don't have any active builders nearby but help was always only a post or search feature away. Not sure if a day has gone by during the build that I wasn't logged on at some point. Next, a big Thank You to Bryan and Showplanes. I used his fastback conversion and cowl and have been delighted with both products. More than that, I've lost track of the number of times we chatted over the past 5 years (even RV8 questions not related to his products). Whenever I'd call I get hear the same steady and calming voice offering years of wisdom from one of the great builders....never rushed and happy to send pics to help explain his answers.

Lastly and most importantly a BIG Thanks to my wife! Regardless of all of our lots in life, building and airplane is a big commitment in terms of both time and money and I was very fortunate to have complete support in both regards.

If the weather cooperates, hoping to get the 40 flown off in time to see some of you and Oshkosh this year!

I'll see if I can get some pics posted soon...and change my signature from "Under Construction" to "Completed"!

Chris Engler, Greene, NY


Longeron and F-01234 match drilling ...-12

On page 23-02 step 5 the forward edge of the F-01234 needs to be flush with the marked line on the longeron. Before match drilling. I decided to put the outside of the forward edge of the F-01234 flush with the outer point of the line on the longeron. And kept going. But maybe I made a mistake doing it that way?

This way?


Baggage compartment shelf...Ed W. update

So it's almost done.

Very similar to what Noel suggested, I have a U-channel atop the longerons just forward of the lower baggage bulkhead, but it transfers no loads to the bulkhead. Rather, I have a screw through the U-channel, bulkhead and the upright in the center of the plane to carry vertical loads in the center, and on the edges, the U channel rests on the longerons. No, I'm not concerned about negative G loads. At least, I sure hope I don't need to be.

At the front, the plywood rests on the crossmember supporting the seat backs. And in the middle, I have a piece of hardware store angle that rests on the longerons and is yet to be glued to the plywood.

And although I haven't yet figured out how to support it so that I can reach it in flight, this design will allow a cutout or a slot for an oxygen bottle ahead of the rear bulkhead.

Materials: one piece of foam board to make a pattern (would have been nice if the foam board was big enough to cover more than just one side at a time), a 2' x 4' piece of 1/4" plywood, a 4' piece of 1/2" U channel, and a 4' piece of maybe 3/4 x 3/4 x 1/16" angle. And one screw, washers, and a bolt.

Now for the real measure: four or five trips to the hardware store, one to Walmart for the foam board, and probably more time spent thinking about how to do it than on actually doing it. And when I returned the unused materials that supported all the aborted ideas, they totaled $82.10.


Elevator Trim Tab Fold -- Acceptable?

Hey all,

I'm working on the LH elevator and trim tab and have gotten the bends on the elevator itself and the outboard tab pretty well done, but the inboard tab has turned out somewhat "less perfect". That said, I'm not certain that another go at it will necessarily produce a much better outcome, and considering that it will be covered in paint and such, my gut is to just build on. That said, I thought I'd ask your collective opinions before doing so:


A Day in the Life ...my home field.

Pictures from Wednesday at 52F.

FOD walk. 0630.  Hand model Rob Reece.


FOD from yesterday afternoon.  In the grass between
the runway and taxiway.


Track from morning .3 flight.  Flew over
our friend Bob's house (sick) letting him
know the gang was thinking about him.
Joined 16L ILS at WIGZU (KAFW) to
missed then back.


Grump, Matt, Sid, Scorch 4-ship practice


Break at initial.


Deck (no stairs yet) at the new airport office.
Built by Carey Sharp.




May 30, 2018.   Issue #4,576.

Sid (7A) and Matt (6) in the Break

...I heard 'um coming up initial and got my phone out in time.  Had to sidestep a little there at the break to keep them in view (they didn't move laterally like a UFO) ;^)


Why a Regular F.O.D. Check Can Be A Good Idea

...found on the runway YESTERDAY at my home field.  Yesterday.  And yes, that's a 13" long piece of rebar.  Randy Richmond has volunteered to drive his golf cart the length of the runway daily at 0630 with his handheld checking for FOD.  Randy found another gas cap a couple of weeks ago.

Click either pic to enlarge...


Strange discoloration on flywheel after prop removal

I removed my prop the other day to take it up to Northwest Propeller for some edge work. After I got back to the hangar, I decided to take off the flywheel and change the alternator belt. To my surprise, I discovered the two mating surfaces between the flywheel and the crank where stained (see below). The mating surfaces on the other side between the flywheel and prop are clean.

This is off an RV-4 (1992) with about 850 hours on the engine and 300 SOH (2008) on the prop.

While the stains look oily they are not. There is very little build up and they are dry. Any ideas about what is going on?



Finish kit has arrived!!! ...dwranda 9A

My finish kit was delivered today. I was a little worried when I saw the crate since it had 3 holes in the side. I took plenty of pics as I opened the crate to check for damage. Luckily it looks like everything is OK. I deleted the cowl since I am going with the James version. Doesn't look like many parts for over $6K. Super excited and a little worried to get going on the canopy.


Pic from Mr. X ...NYC


RV-12 Panel Update ...Ron Gawer

I'm going to be moving my airplane to the airport in a couple weeks, but it's essentially done.  I meant to add that once I finished up, I found I had to remove a little material at the upper outboard corners of each display to prevent any contact with the canopy bar. It would open and close, but rubbed. Rather than trim the bar (allowed in the drawings), I decided milling off a little plastic easy. I meant to go back and put some black paint on the corners, but just realized when I saw the picture online that I forgot that. Anyway, I had a "I have made fire" kind of moment when I turned it on and it all actually works, including all of the engine telemetry. Now, on to the actual engine noises...


Milestone: 'The Cut' ...kentlik 7A 'Rebirthing'



May 29, 2018.   Issue #4,575.
  (207) emails in the 'ol inbox.  Digital tectonics seems to be pushing Mt. Email up more than usual.  I'm working on it...and the PMs...and good morning.  Hope you got some time with your RV this weekend.

Just painted ...pstraub

Flying a neighbor over Lake Camanche in Northern California!!


New Rv-10 owner!!!wtb fuselage, wings

Hey guys I would like to introduce myself. I’m Allen and I finally purchased a RV-10 empennage that is partially built. In a couple of months I am going to order I’m thinking the fuselage quick build kit before the wings. Before I order is there anyone that is looking to sell a fuselage or wing kit?


"First Flight: Journey to a Dream" a film my son did of my, well you know...

Executive Summary:
After a little over two years, I conducted my first flight in N5427W, an RV-7. My son (a film student), was good enough to video the experiance and create this short film (only 6 minutes). I almost titled it "Five of the Best Landings I Ever Made", but I settled on "First Flight: Journey to a Dream."

Turn up the sound and enjoy!


Exhaust Spring Rubbing On Cowling Air Duct ...-12

The spring on the left front of the exhaust (just below the #2 cylinder) has been rubbing the cowling air duct. The rubbing has gone through the heat shield and is now working on the fiberglass. The air duct is dimpled to make room for the spring; but, in my case, it looks like it could use another 1/8” to 3/16” of space to keep the spring and air duct from rubbing together. This is the original exhaust system on the 912ULS. This condition was found during the 200 hour engine maintenance (replace spark plugs, etc.).

I am thinking of cutting an oblong hole around the spring’s mark on the air duct and fiber glassing in a bubble to make more room for the spring.

Any suggestions?


Don't make this mistake installing the wheel fairings! ...-12

Page 36A-06. When installing the left outboard main gear fairing bracket (U-00002 and U-00004) with the long AN3-40A bolts, I broke off both bolts in the holes in the axle. Sounds pretty dumb but here's how it happened.

As I screwed the bolts in they became tight with about 1/8" left to go. I was puzzled so I turned the small 1/4" socket wrench carefully and then, snap, the bolt broke off. I thought I had a bad bolt so I carefully tightened the other bolt and it snapped off as well.

I tried to drill out the bolt shanks but was unsuccessful. I believe the problem is that the holes in the end of the axle were not tapped deep enough for the bolt. I bought a 10-32 tap and tapped the other axle until the tap reached the bottom and the AN3 bolts worked perfectly.

I spoke with Van's a couple time and they will send me replacement bolts but for the axle, they referred me to Matco. Matco asked me to send the axle back and I don't know if they will charge be for a replacement ($71 + shipping on their website).

So this is an easy mistake to make that could cost you $100 and a couple weeks to fix so the moral of the story is: if your bolt gets tight before it should, STOP! Go buy the correct tap and tap it deeper. That solution would have cost me $5.77 and an hour of time.

Just because it's a machined part doesn't mean it's right.


Bogash RV-12 Adventure

Bob Bogash ferry flight of Don's RV-12 from Port Townsend, WA to TX. Great reading and lots of pictures:


Caribbean Adventure!

So, I had a friend who recently started flying helicopters/seaplanes on St Thomas in the U.S. VI's. He was joking around one day and said, "you should fly the -7 down!". I had been itching for a change of scenery. So, I decided to call his bluff and was like, "alright!". The next day I had the customs sticker on it's way in the mail.  ...


Repeat Offender -- this time around is an RV-10

Hello again, VAF!

Long time, no write! I have built and sold and RV-7, and fast forward several years, I am now a repeat offender with a brand new RV-10 project. My family has expanded since the -7, and the -10 is going to be the perfect travel machine for the entire Johnson family.

We recently started the empennage, and I just wrapped up drilling the vertical stabilizer skin to the rib/spar structure. Making good, steady progress, and I am absolutely loving being back at it building again.

Anyway, please feel free to check out my progress at the link in my signature. Thanks for still being here and for being such a great community!


RV-8 and the Glad the Plane's Fixed Flight

With all of my recent maintenance issues resolved, it was time to just go out and have fun. Fortunately Sunday was a great day for it.


AviationNation--another solo!

The second student-builder at Jennings County High School soloed for the first time today. Thomas Schuler is the Student Project Manager on our RV-12 build project. He did his 3 T/O's and landings in fine style. Congratulations, Thomas! We have another student about ready, and our 12 is nearing completion.

Our students are our products; the plane is a by-product. We are very pleased to see them chose aviation as life-long careers, and we believe the first two to solo, and the next in line (plus several others) have done just that.



2018 OSH Social

Hey, 60 days till Oshkosh! The Beer Fairy has again dragged her butt up the basement stairs and declared she was ready to party, so mark your calendar. It's Monday evening, July 23rd, opening day at OSH. Location is the back yard at 1366 W. Waukau, west of the control tower, just outside the EAA gate.


Cedar Meadows 2018 Fly-In

A few video clips from yesterdays event. Note the unique 'RV parking' sign !

Jim Thill worked his buns off last week keeping up with the rain and growing grass. He had the runway looking like a golf green. Way to go Jim!


First flight! and a question

Saturday before the big Florida storm hit I was able to do a first flight. Everything went well with no big surprises. One question: my pitch trim works fine on the ground but in flight I found that at cruise that it wouldn’t move past neutral to allow me to trim it out completely. For some reason it showed power going to the trim as I pushed the switch but it wouldn’t move past neutral. Tried it again on the ground and it worked fine. I have a VPX system and I’ve input the positions with plenty of space on each end of travel so not sure hat it is? Any suggestions welcome.



Novel alternator circuit protection

I'm not sure if this qualifies as a safety item, but it certainly is an oddball. Had an RV in our shop for an unrelated issue that required cowl removal, which led to us having a look around, and we spotted this. The builder (not the owner of the airplane) had installed an ANL current limiter base in the B lead circuit for the alternator, but rather than spend the princely sum of $15 or so for a proper current limiter, the gadget in the photos below was assembled from a combo of a blade fuse and some brass sheet. Arguably the slow blow fuse shown in the photos has similar, though not identical properties to the current limiter that would fit in the base, but still. Cheapskate or ...?



May 28, 2018.   Issue #4,574.

Memorial Day.

(photo credit)

General Orders No.11, WASHINGTON, D.C., May 5, 1868

i.The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet church-yard in the land. In this observance no form of ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit.

(photo credit)

We are organized, comrades, as our regulations tell us, for the purpose among other things, "of preserving and strengthening those kind and fraternal feelings which have bound together the soldiers, sailors, and marines who united to suppress the late rebellion." What can aid more to assure this result than cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead, who made their breasts a barricade between our country and its foes? Their soldier lives were the reveille of freedom to a race in chains, and their deaths the tattoo of rebellious tyranny in arms. We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let no wanton foot tread rudely on such hallowed grounds. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.

(photo credit)

If other eyes grow dull, other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remain to us.

Let us, then, at the time appointed gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with the choicest flowers of spring-time; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved from hishonor; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us a sacred charge upon a nation's gratitude, the soldier's and sailor's widow and orphan.

(photo credit)

ii.It is the purpose of the Commander-in-Chief to inaugurate this observance with the hope that it will be kept up from year to year, while a survivor of the war remains to honor the memory of his departed comrades. He earnestly desires the public press to lend its friendly aid in bringing to the notice of comrades in all parts of the country in time for simultaneous compliance therewith.

(photo credit)

iii.Department commanders will use efforts to make this order effective.

By order of


Adjutant General



How To Observe Memorial Day

"We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security, is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time testify to the present or the coming generations, that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided Republic. If other eyes grow dull, and other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remains to us."
---General John Logan, General Order No. 11, May 5, 1868

The "Memorial" in Memorial Day has been ignored by too many of us who are beneficiaries of those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom and liberty. Often we do not observe the day as it should be, a day where we actively remember those Americans including our ancestors, family members, loved ones neighbors and friends who have paid the price for the blessings of liberty. You can change this by doing the following:

•By wearing your Memorial Day Button from the first of May until Memorial Day.
•By visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our fallen heroes.
•By flying the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon. Memorial Day is a day of "National Mourning."
•By attending religious services of your choice.
•By visiting memorials.
•By participating in a "National Moment of Remembrance" at 3:00 PM local time, to pause and think upon the meaning of the day and for taps to be played where possible.
•By renewing a pledge to aid the widows, and orphans of our fallen dead, and to aid the disabled veterans.



May 25, 2018.   Issue #4,573.
  A group of us were going to fly our RVs over to Breckenridge, TX to see the warbird fly-in Saturday, but some sites/emails/calls confirmed a new policy: no umbrellas (they allowed them last year).  Since it's forecast to be 97*F this weekend and there is zero shade at that airport, we'll fly somewhere else and eat.  Skin Cancer Avoidance 101.  Can you imagine flying in and having to sit/stand on an asphalt ramp in direct sunlight around 100*F all day waiting for the airspace to open back up at 5pm so you can fly home?
  We're crazy, but not that crazy.  ;^)
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and shade-filled RV weekend.


RV-4 Refurb Update ...BruceMe

It's been while, time for an update.  The overhaul was a challenge, but I have it back on the mount, all the parts are on and I'm ready to time the mags and do a final check and turn it over.

So far I've...

- Overhauled the engine
- Swapped fixed pitch for constant speed
- Switched to a Skytec starter for weight
- Fabricated a blue-anodized prop lever
- Repaired a leak in the left fuel tank
- Repaired a lose (finger tight) vent line _inside_ the left tank
- Added a return line to both tanks
- Re-plumbed all fuel lines from the fuel tanks to the valve
- Swapped the stock brass fuel valve for nice positive-lock duplex
- Wired the fuel-level sensors to the G3X and removed the old fuel gauges

I'm going to Bill Gill look it over once as well. But I plan to put it back and get some hours on it before I do the canopy or the new cowl (which I have).



Pics and video from Wisconsin Celebration of Life for Tom Irlbeck ...Alex Peterson post

Here are some updates, pictures and video from this past Saturday's Celebration of Life event at Tom's hangar in WI. There was a similar event in FL last month. Tom really had a profound effect on many, many people, both in and out of aviation.


Eagle's Nest Projects - EN-19 Montgomery HS (TX) - Inaugural 1st Flight ...R.E. 'Ernie' Butcher

Eagle's Nest Projects
Saturday, May 19, 2018 - KCXO

Montgomery High School (TX) celebrates the inaugural 1st flight of "Bear Force One". The celebration was a community event with over 200 in attendance and the high school marching band added to the excitement. Following remarks from school and city dignitaries, the Eagle's Nest student-built aircraft (EN-19) was officially unveiled and then followed a drawing to see which students would receive the "first flights". The weather was outstanding and the event was a huge success.   ...


Rocky Mountain Crossing PIREP...Smokey Ray for Vlad

I've crossed the Rockies and landed at Leadville too many times to count. I normally did it as a proving point for delivering new RV owners airplanes as to the capabilities (and limitations) of the design. They also have cheap gas.

As far as crossing, early morning or late evening near sunset is always better. I actually like crossing the Front Range further south. I stop at KLHX (La Junta). http://www.airnav.com/airport/KLHX

1. Nice former military field with big ramp and runways.
2. They have 2 courtesy cars that they have always let me keep overnight.
3. Great (cheap) Mexican food in town next to Hampton Inn.
4. Cheap (relatively speaking) Self Serve 100LL.
5. Easy climb out distance to 12,500' following I-50 up the Pueblo Valley over Fremont.

Leadville is a great stop and overnight if you have time. There is a great, old Hotel in downtown with several good restaurants and a brew pub across the street, all well above 10,000 feet MSL.*
Sounds Fun...
До скорого!


PS: If you're absolutely set on the "landing box" you posted, I like Longmont as a fuel stop.

PSS: *Warning: Use of alcohol is discretionary...;^)


Milestone: RV-14 Emp Kit Finsihed ...azflyer21

185.0 hours and I have completed the Empennage kit, some fairing work remaining


RV-10 Cowling Heat Sheild ...Bill.Peyton install

ACS adhesive backed insulation



May 24, 2018.   Issue #4,572.
  52F airport manager Rob Reece running the rented roller Wednesday at my home field.  Smoothing out the grass areas, making the airport grass cutting crew's job a little less off-road.  Getting better all the time!  www.Fly52F.org is our field's URL.


New RV-7A Owner Checks In ...Joe Kohn

Thanks to all of you that answered my ad when I was looking for RV7A, 8A, or 9A a few weeks ago. I found a pristine RV7A, that was right under my nose and 15 minutes from my house in Arlington, Texas. I love it and I am proud to show her off. I bought my first RV a couple years ago, RV9A, and sold her and regretted it ever since. I have already flown the 7A almost five hours and there is nothing like it, especially the Garmin G3X Touch. Looking forward to weekend fly-ins.


Found During Condition Inspection ...bruceh 9A

I'm in the middle of doing my annual condition inspection, so the wing tips were off again. I had disconnected my J Pole antenna and put the APRS antenna that I got with the tracker inside the wing tip back several months ago. The changing of the antenna solved the issue I was experiencing with packets not getting heard. I was back to spitting out packets reliably. When I did this change, I just left the J Pole antenna in the wing tip (figuring I might need to use it again if the other antenna wasn't the solution).

I pulled out the J Pole antenna and found this on the end.  ...


RV-14 Flap Travel: Reflex ...Scott

"The RV-14 (and RV-10) have a custom designed airfoil meant to reduce induced drag in level flight at high speed cruise. The ailerons are rigged to match the desired reflex shape of the airfoil but since the flaps are movable, they can be moved out of the reflex position. This essentially makes the wing act like it has a bit more wing area, improving climb performance slightly.

The way we fly our RV-10's and 14's is to take-off with whatever flap setting you choose (1/2 or zero), and then position them to zero for climb.
Then position them to -3 as you level off and set cruise power.
After decent and leveling off to enter the pattern, return them to zero and then use flaps as desired (within the limitations of Vfe)
In simpler terms - reflex position for cruise and decent - zero for everything else.

We have G3X (with GAD27 module) in our RV-10 and had no problem setting up the indicator for -3, 0, 15, and 30 degrees.

...its specific to the airfoil design and a reduction in induced drag.  Otherwise it would be beneficial to all the RV's, regardless of what model."

fmi: http://www.vansaircraft.com/public/rv14.htm


Intersection Fairing, Rain and Birdsh*t Tape ...Steve Melton 9A

"...the plane sat on the ramp in Wichita for 10 days while I painted my father's house. before I departed I placed tape on the intersection fairing thinking it would keep the rain out. it worked well and it also kept all of the bird **** out too. you would not believe all of the bird s h i t running down the vertical stab.

cleaned. picture of the tape. ...


Customer Interior Shots ...Luke D

Here's another beautiful RV from France. Lot's of nice features. Thank you for the pictures Alain!


Intel Wanted  ...Vlad the Traveller

In couple days my buddy and I are westbound. I've been over Denver couple times crossing the Rockies back and forth but alone and I took the beating in the middle of the day. This time I am going with someone I would like to keep comfortable. Could be a future RV owner. I am wondering what's the reasonable overnight place would be in this quadrant?  I would like to jump the Rockies in the morning heading to the highest elevation airport.


Flight Data Systems News

(Charles Newman) "We have started producing the LC-50 Lighting Controller again and would like to make the VAF community aware it is now available.  http://www.fdatasystems.com/lc-lighting-controllers/ for more info. "


Fuel Injection Star Wheel Adjustment

Q: Hi All,
My IO 320 D1A idles roughly and there is no rise in RPM moving to idle cut off. This, and black smoke on start, indicate it is running too rich idles at 700 RPM once warmed. I've read on carbs engines the mixture adjustment needle is turned out one to one and a half turns in most cases from closed. I have moved the star wheel in the lean direction a number of clicks (10) and still have rough idle and no rise. Do I need to make several turns as opposed to moving it clicks. Anyone able to give me a starting distance between the two blocks where the star wheel is positioned.

A: (Walt)



May 23, 2018.   Issue #4,571.

Pic From Mr. X

Mt. Rainer sunrise.

related: more Mr. X pics


RV-10 Seat Height Q/A

Q: I am playing around with panel layout (Rain kept me from canopy top work). However, I won't have my finishing kit for another month or so. Therefore, I have no real way to gauge seat height. Can someone give me an approximate height of the seat cushion top from the seat base? By base, I mean the rectangular .063 panel with all of the lightning holes in it.

A: It depends.  You'll come to relish those times when you can't work on the cabin top or doors, but do something else instead

That seat height is a fuzzy measurement. It'll depend on how much you squash the seat. The top of the seat cushion is also not "flat" and not parallel to the floor. Here's a couple of pictures that might help:


How To Build a Workbench ...David Paule

I've made eight of these so far. They all are doing their job now. They are relatively easy to make and go together quickly.

I use a circular saw and an electric screwdriver/drill. The hand tools needed are mostly a carpenter's square and some C-clamps. I like Titebond II or III and use 4 deck screws at each frame joint.

Mine differ by size, of course, and some have bolts at the bottom for adjustment and the rest have wheels. These minor details on yours, are left for you. The only real comment is that if you install wheels, get robust ones. The table for my ceramic barbecue, a Big Green Egg, is highly loaded and the urethane tires aren't lasting. The various tables with metal wheels are all doing fine.


Very strange A/P problem - pls help me troubleshoot!

TruTrak Vizion 385 installed with Garmin GTN650 and HS43 module.

Was on a long cross country over the weekend and discovered the AP will only hold course, not altitude, gotta be the elevator servo or wiring right - here's the kicker - elevator control still works for fully coupled approaches!

Here's a breakdown:

1. Flying along, I select an altitude and vertical speed, engage AP, course is flown, but no elevator changes or fore/aft stick resistance to manual control.

2. I manually fly to the selected altitude and AP displays the normal "approaching altitude" and "altitude hold" messages but again, no exerts no actual control of elevator, no servo hum or resistance to moving the stick fore and aft - doesn't matter if I select existing altitude or dial in an ascent or descent or even if I just use wing level feature - in cruise flight, not elevator control is exerted by AP.

I thought it was possibly a bad elevator servo or a bad connection to the servo but....

3. When on a RNAV approach, I was somewhat startled when between IAF and FAF, (get glide slope indication from GPS) the AP display switched from ALT HLD to CPLD and the AP controled elevator servo all the way down for a successful fully coupled approach with vertical guidance.

This is 100% repeatable. No AP control of elevator in cruise - but once vertical guidance comes from GPS - boom it works.

So the servo is working - it's just not getting any guidance except when coupled.

I sent an email to TruTrak too


Status: 7A Rebirthing ...kentlik


IFR Training Status ...Jeremy Constant RV-7A

This is all very timely for me. I started my instrument training in Sept and it was put on hold due to my 300xl dying. I'm in the middle of an extensive rework of the panel with an ifd440 becoming my ifr GPS. It's a long slog.

In the process of thinking about equipment I recalled several local folks who fly down to Southern California reasonably regularly talking about remarkably frequent GPS outages, where there is essentially no GPS signal for significant amounts of time. The theory is that there is GPS signal jamming going on at one of several military installations in the region and one or more of those facilities is actually developing and testing jamming technology. The point being that my sense of warm and fuzzy surrounding the reliability of GPS got a bit of a reality check and the importance of ground based navigation was reinforced.

I'm still working on the panel installation and rat's nest of wiring, but I think I am firmly in the "putting it back together" phase, rather than the "taking it apart" phase!

[ed. Who is Jeremy?  He's the guy with the violin.  Gotta be in the top three best VAF cap photos ever!  v/r,dr]



May 22, 2018.   Issue #4,570.
  I haven't flown the RV-6 from Dallas down to Houston to see my sister in way too long.  The opportunity presented itself Monday to have lunch, and the Wx cooperated (as long as the plane got out of Houston by 1pm).  Pretty clouds, a smooth ride, 167kts GS and 59*F at 8,500' on the return trip.  Pretty dang good burger at Clay's just north of KIWS...and it's always good to see my Sis.  How a person could end up with a better sister is beyond me.
  These RVs are amazing....and Donna Gail says hey to the RV gang.

Between layers and smooth.

3pm(ish).  Back in Dallas well north of the action.


Adventures in the RV4

Two years of exploring America the beautiful in our little, humble, but at the same time mighty RV4. There are planes better for aerobatics, some faster, some more comfy for XC, some more economical (although not many!), but none will do ALL of these things as well as the RVs! Becoming a pilot and buying an RV was one of the most fulfilling things I've done in my life. Looking forward to many more years of enjoyment.


Bird Attack ...schristo RV-7

A club I didn't want to join...

Earlier this Spring, a red hawk at 2,800 feet, in formation.

I saw the hawk just before the strike and thought it would be a close miss…


Level the flight, radio call to route. Had the wings look for visible damage and leaks then did initial stability and control checks. All good.

Back on the ground it looks like we hit a bowling ball. It could have been a real mess if it had come through the windshield or taken out my tail.

I pulled the tank and started making a parts list.

The next morning, ROAD TRIP! to Vans to pick up parts.

Two weeks after the strike... Back in the air!

Build it, fly it, maintain it, fix it


"Slow Rolls," a/k/a Competition Aerobatic Rolls, in the RV

Having a problem doing “slow rolls” (old terminology, now I believe simply called “competition aileron rolls” by IAC) in the RV. Nose always dropping too much, so thought I’d put this question out there for the RV aerobatics guys.

Yes, I know that when inverted you must push forward on the stick to keep the nose from dropping. So the obvious answer might just be “push forward more when inverted to keep the nose up.”

However, my impression is that the nose has already dropped too much by the time I’m even getting to inverted. And I am suspecting the reason for that is either (a) that I should have pitched up at the beginning of the roll, or (b) that the rudder size on RV’s (in my case, the RV-4) is not enough by itself to keep the nose up when in knife-edge flight. That’s where we get to my question. Is it just that my technique sucks, or is it accurate that RV’s, which have relatively small rudders compared to competition aircraft, require some adjustment in technique when doing a slow roll?  ...


Status Report ...goatflieg RV-8

New blogspot entry posted; Little Steps and Big Steps; see link in my signature below. Get comfortable because it's a long read, but there's some good stuff in there. Here are two teaser photos:


Problem with exhaust fitting ...chris mitchell RV-4

"... I received my 4-pipe Vetterman exhaust via Van's. I am fitting the pipes to a Lycoming IO-320 that has a Superior cold air sump and induction pipes.

The exhaust pipes for cylinders 4.2 and 3 (that being the ordered I fitted them in) are all fine. In particular cylinders 4 and 2 sit together very nicely.
THe problem is with cylinder 1. It is far too close to the induction pipe and the only way I can get it to fit at all is with the section after teh ball joint at a very strange angle.

I hope the photos are clear enough to show the problem. Can anyone identify where I've gone wrong?

Here you can see the pipes from cylinders 2 and 4 nicely aligned:"


Plenum PIREP ...rockwoodrv9

On my plenum, a BillL special, the oil dipstick is not in the plenum area. I believe in his photo the dipstick is behind the large orange ducting. At least on a O-320, that is how it works. Here is mine overall, but does not show the oil dipstick.



May 21, 2018.   Issue #4,569.
  Adjusted some Wx map links on the Wx page.  Servers come and go and all that.  One interesting new link is the GOES-East image.  If you click on it (or bookmark it) you get a 2500x1250 pixel map that is updated every 5 minutes.  If you have the monitor space it's pretty sweet.  I'll keep tweaking the links as I poke around over the next few days.
  Hope you had a nice weekend.

Pic Flying to Jekyll Island ...Trapper


Finally Bought My First RV! Looking Instruction SF Bay Area.

Well it took 10 months but I was finally able to pull the trigger on A RV6A built in 1995. The tail number is N89PC. There are 30 pages of builders logs, a complete POH serial numbered for 89PC, complete airframe, engine and propellor logs. I was impressed, especially since I had looked at other RV's without the documentation. The plane flew as advertised with a sustained climb rate of 2,000 FPM for1-2 minutes dropping to 1200-1400 FPM. Wow! I guess I'll need to buy oxygen!
My mission? T go fast safely and...cheaply. Aerobatics? Yes. Formation flying? Yes. Burgers? Yep.
I will post pictures of the plane as soon as I take delivery.

Ron Lem


Check this if you have an injected engine... Vic S.

In the interest of safety I figure I should post this. I discovered it yesterday during a Prebuy inspection on an RV-10 that had been flying for 8 years and 300 hours. The rubber shipping cap had been left installed on the fitting at the injection spider on top of the engine. This fitting is typically connected to a round dial fuel flow gauge, such as in older Bonanzas and Cessnas. Pressure at this point varies in relation to fuel flow, and can be anywhere from 1.5 PSI to over 35 psi! If not plugged or capped properly, a high pressure fuel stream will be the result, possibly causing a fire in the engine compartment. The builder mentioned that the plans never said to remove it. Perhaps others should check their installations? I told the builder I wanted his Guardian Angel!

(For those of you who are used to the newer electronic fuel flow sensors and wondering how this would work, basically the round dial gauge is nothing but a pressure gauge that has a faceplate on it calibrated to read fuel flow.)

On another note, I am still finding way too many RV's WITHOUT the Operating Limitations, especially on RV's owned by non-builders. So, for those of you who may have purchased your airplane, please understand that the Operating Limitations, which should be on FAA letterhead, need to be in the aircraft AT ALL TIMES. The Airworthiness Certificate is invalid without them.

For those of you who are selling your airplanes to non-builders, please remember to have this discussion with them.

Many of them show me a POH when I ask about the Operating Limitations


FltPlan Go: Why or why not??

My FlyQ subscription is going to expire sometime this year. I've tried Foreflight in the past. They both work fine for me. However, I have a friend who has been using FltPlan Go for quite a while now. After poo-pooing it for quite a while I'm thinking of giving it a try.

So, for those who have used it, how do or did you like it?

How does it compare with the paid apps?

What allows them to be able to provide this product at no charge???


RV7 USA Perimeter Flight

My wife and I will be flying our RV7 around the perimeter of America over the next 6 weeks. We are watching the weather and hope to depart KMQJ, Indianapolis, Indiana, Monday, 5/20/18. Our trip officially begins when we fly north and hit the southwest shore of Lake Erie at KTDZ, Toledo Executive Airport. We'll fly eastbound with our first overnight at Niagara Falls, KIAG. If you'd like a little company, we'll be looking for RV friendly places to land.


Overheated brakes

I just replaced the brake pads with a set from Vans on my Cleveland brakes about a month ago. I have about 8 landings on them. The other day I landed a bit fast and used moderate braking to stop. The right brake faded and the plane drifted left but was still under control. Taxiing back to the hanger I could smell a strong hot brake odor entering the cockpit that persisted during the short taxi to the hanger. Upon exit, the smell was more apparent. The next day I removed the pads and found a buildup on the pads as shown in the two photos linked here.

The buildup was easily removed with light sanding. The pins also required cleaning. There was no evidence of any fluid leak. But the was more discoloring of the primer on the wheel pants bracket than I remember from the condition inspection. Things did get hot pretty quickly.

After installing the new pads, when tightening the two bolts on the caliper, something happened that caused a momentary fluid leak. I removed the bolts, and reinstalled them taking care that everything was aligned right. The leak has not occurred again.

What could have caused this brake to overheat and what is the buildup on the pad? I have applied much harder braking on the previous pads without this occurring.


Status ...SJordan RV-4

Getting close!


RV IAC Aerobatic Competition Standings - 2018

Sorry for the delay in posting the new standings. I was vacationing in Scotland for a few weeks. What a wonderful country! But I didn't see any GA activity there, let alone RVs. Any RV pilots in Scotland?

Congratulations to Brian Pham who posted a very respectable score in his very first contest! Brian posted an account of his experience at the Apple Valley, CA contest here on VAF and it sounds like he is hooked.

Randy King came in 5th out of a very competitive field of 14 Sportsman pilots at Sebring. He was edged out by two Extras, a Pitts S2B and a Cap 10. He did it in a borrowed RV-7A. Look for Randy in his new ride soon. He just ferried his new RV-8 home from Colorado. As soon as he installs inverted systems he will be ready to compete. Picture of the new beast below. Very nice!


Flap hinge pin lubrication (and rod ends)

I am doing my 12th condition inspection and looked at the flap hinge and they look a bit dirty after collecting dust for the the 12 years. I typically squirt some LPS2 on them every year and that seems to be attracting dirt. I decided to pull the pins and clean and lubricate.

Questions for the group: How often should you pull the flap hinge pins and inspect, clean, lubricate? Should I be using something other than LPS2 that collects less grim?

This leads to more general question on pulling hinge bolts. I annually pull bolts that something rotates on, like the rudder attach cable bolts and airbox bypass door pull cable, every year to look for wear on the bolt. I do not for rod ends that are clamped up. I will squirt in some LPS2 but it is hard to really get the lubricant onto the rod end due to the clamp up with washers. How often should I pull those bolts to lubricate and look for bearing wear?


Status Report ...jcarne 7A

After a very short match drilling session time for a good ole mass quantity of hours spent deburring. Lots of nooks and crannies in these babies. At least it won't be as painful as the wing ribs!


Think I Got a Bad Fuel Pump

I bought a new mechanical fuel pump (new Lycoming part, hi pressure for injected engine) from Aircraft Spruce last week. While swapping the fittings with the old pump I found that the actuating arm doesn’t move, at all. I know it isn’t supposed to move much, but I would think that some movement is necessary. The old one moves maybe a little more than a quarter inch or so, but the new one, nothing.

Naturally, I will be on the phone with Aircraft Spruce Monday morning, but I was wondering if anyone else has ever seen this. I’ve been in the aircraft repair business (military and commercial) long enough to know that just because a part is new doesn’t mean it isn’t bad but, you know, why me?




May 18, 2018.   Issue #4,568.
  Last year some folks suggested I remind the readers a few times throughout the year about my donation-based business model here - so here we are 136 days into 2018, a little over a third of the way.  Why now?  Our family has a perfect storm of medical bills coming up in the next 2 months: colonoscopies and wisdom teeth.  In the $5000 - $7000 range if everything goes smooth ......all out of pocket.  So, the first 'commercial' of 2018 ;^).  Maybe you could give the donations page a read if you're not too busy, and thank you to those who helped our family keep this website going in 2018. 
  Unrelated, but hopefully showing my commitment to doing this site for the long haul, the chart at right is my weight loss data over the past 21 days (no more French Fries, very limited sugar and lots of exercise).  It's working.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend...and sorry for the commercial.


Full Show at Beale Air Force Base ...15 minute video (AX-O)

"...I was finally able to stitch the flight from our last air show. No fancy editing or music but it is cool to see the formation changes and everything else going on."

Note: This is a 360* video
(you can look around during playback)


Is synthetic vision all that useful, or just hype? ...Ed Wischmeyer

In past lives, I’ve worked around synthetic vision displays and considered them more hype than substance. After this last trip in the RV-9A, flying over the mountains with synthetic vision, my opinion is unchanged.

Who has actually used synthetic vision in flight, and to what benefit? Not theoretical benefits, or oh it’s nice to look at, or here’s what the marketing hype says are the benefits, but what useful information did it provide to help you make decisions and take actions?

On this last flight, I was flying northbound over the Smokey Mountains, just to the east of Asheville, NC. It was hazy with clouds ahead almost down to the mountains, and as I wrote earlier, this was a good time to go IFR and get some good terrain clearance.

On the synthetic vision display, I could see the ridges ahead, but if there were any distance markers to the ridges, I didn’t know how to read them. And if there had been a terrain threat, the same database that fed the synthetic vision would have warned me of a potential terrain encounter. I could see from the synthetic vision that I would clear all the ridges ahead at present altitude (if some monster downdraft didn’t suddenly decide to ruin my entire day), but the terrain screen would have told me much the same thing, only with lower resolution.

There may have been times when my synthetic vision system has shown towers and such in a useful format, but I don’t recall. Again, the Garmin G3X system gives aural warnings of obstacles.

Showing the destination runway on the SV is reassuring, especially with the flight path marker over the end of the runway, but that’s inadequate guidance IFR and if you have to use it VFR, you may already be in trouble.

One real annoyance of synthetic vision is that the depicted horizon is some amount below the white line level flight depiction.

So does SV provide any advantages in making decisions and in taking actions? Or only in special cases like the hypothetical engine failure over mountains in IMC or at night? Or is it just personal preference?

I’m inclined to leave it turned off…


Charity Cap Sighting ...Jae J. Yu

"USAF Acadamy Jump Team, Wings of Blue (Instructors)."

Related: About the caps


Perplexed ...Djgeib RV-8

I’m working on my -8 QB fuselage. Drilled the holes for the mid cabin covers and am putting in the nut plates. However, the aft most hole on the right side has put me in a quandary. I have removed the console cover but the angle that it attaches to is preventing me from being able to get a squeezer or my rivet gun in to lay flat on the rivets. Was wondering how others have done this. I have clearance on all the other holes. I’m sure there is a simple solution that has evaded me. Thanks


Staying Motivated ...Strikefinder RV-8

I had a frustrating end to my shop day...I had been humming along, finishing the RH elevator substructure on my RV-8 and was riveting the stiffeners to the LH elevator skin when I managed to booger up a rivet on the inside of the trailing edge fold. I've gotten fairly good at drilling out AN470s, but haven't gotten the knack of drilling out flush heads yet, so when I drilled it out, I ended up with an elongated hole...opened it up to #30 and put an oops rivet in, but somehow that ended up even worse. I decided to put down the tools before I did something more foolish, though I'm fearful that when I drill out the NAS 1097 (and it's bad enough that there's no doubt it will have to come out), I'll end up with an unusable LH elevator skin. I'm not looking forward to ordering the skin and stiffeners, and then doing all the cutting, drilling, deburring, dimpling, priming, etc. again to get back to where I am now...already had to do it with the rudder once, and similarly for one mistake that got out of hand.

I'm not really looking for advice as far as what to do, though...as I'm coming up on the end of the tail section, I admit it's experiences like this that leave me a little daunted about how far I have to go. It's bad enough to have to scrap a few hundred dollars in parts if it comes to that (plus cross-country shipping and the lead time), but I worry about the inevitable screw-up on the wings, when I can't exactly just throw the whole spar out and try again. And I'm still in awe of how much there is to learn--I sort of marvel at all the things that were completely unknown when I started that are now pretty routine, but I just got a starter fiberglass kit and have this sort of feeling that every part of this process is going to make me feel in over my head.

It seems like lots of people around here have made all kinds of mistakes (many of the same ones I have), and have managed to press on...my question is, looking back at where I am now, how did you move past the anxiety of the next steps? Did things just get easier (though not necessarily less time consuming) as you got more proficient, or did you figure out how to fix the mistakes better along the way? Does the learning curve ever start to level out?

I'm not saying I'm on the verge of throwing in the towel or anything--I genuinely enjoy the building process and know I'll feel less frustrated and have a better perspective on what to do now in a few days. I'm just looking for what you guys all think now about where I am, looking back on it...


Bragging on Tate ...my son.

Tate is signed up for a welding class during his senior year in HS.  It's a half day class for 18 weeks - he drives about five miles from the HS to a place offsite.  He did this last year for paint and body work class.  We went to the orientation the other night and were impressed!  He's going to learn stick, TIG and MIG welding - a skill that isn't bad to have on your resume.  It also tickles the art itch he seems to have on occasion.

The Army Vet teacher nearly yelled at the top of his lungs from the start, "First and foremost in this class I teach HONOR and RESPECT!  After that I teach welding." 

He had me.  I wish I could take the class.

From the site: This pre-employment laboratory course is designed to introduce basic skills in structural welding. Introduction to the basic processes (Stick, Mig, and Tig) welding as well as cutting with Oxy/Acetylene and Plasma rigs will be presented in the class (theory) and the shop (practical). Safety, work ethic and career opportunities will be covered. A welding hood, safety glasses, cutting glasses and gloves will need to be purchased. Material and supply fees may be required. The emphasis for this class is working in the shop. Offered at Dale Jackson Career Center Only

I've already asked Tate if he'll make me some nice chocks. ;^)

Pano pic I took


200hp 2010 RV-8A For Sale on my Field (52F)

...posting for a local guy (w/no VAF account).

Contact Randy Richmond for more info.  (817) Four Zero 1 - 8 Zero 9 Six.

I've flown this plane and it is fast - faster than my RV-6 I'm more than a little pissed to say.  ;^)

•Mfg Date Issued: 3-19-2010
•Lyc IO-360 A1B6. 200hp. Angle valve.
•Hartzell Blended Airfoil C/S prop
•Dual P-mags (less than year old)
•Freshly re-sealed prop governor
•Nice/neat firewall forward
•9 pass/tube oil cooler (recently installed)
•Reinforced baffling around #4 cylinder made from thicker metal than stock (supports weight of oil cooler)
•Recently replaced fuel hoses
•Fresh annual (Feb 2018)
•New nose tire and tube
•Main tires in excellent condition
•New brake pads
•Baggage door fits very nicely (unusual for 8)
•Unique way cowl pins come in from the back - insert into slots (no exposed hinge pins)
•Canopy has a 5” crack toward aft end - not that uncommon on 8s. Stop drilled.
•Paint is a 7.5 out of 10

•Few scratches and nicks showing a little bit of its age
•No fuel tank leaks
•Adjustable brake/rudder pedals
•Infinity grip with flaps and trim, fuel pump
•2 fuel gauges next to fuel selector
•Fire extinguisher
•Oxygen system
•Rear view mirrors
•Vertical compass card
•EIS engine monitor
•EFIS (GRT) recently updated
•GMA340 audio panel
•GNS430 GPS/Comm (sent to Garmin - now a 430W)
•Icom A200 Radio
•KT76A Bendix Transponder
•Wired-through circuit breakers (pull off)
•Tru Track A/P
•A/P will track 430 or EFIS
•Dayton Murdock throttle mixture prop control
•Rear rudder pedals
•Vetterman exhaust

•Unique canopy seal (bicycle tube with pump)
•No damage history.
•Electric pitch trim
•Electric aileron trim
•Rear throttle/mix quadrant
•Polished metal spinner
•Duckworks landing lights both sides
•Whelen strobes
•Koger shade
•5 point harnesses
•Fairings where rudder cables exit fuselage
•All new EGT probes
•2 new CHT probes



May 17, 2018.   Issue #4,567.

One Day Across the Country....Running Out of Country ...schristo RV-7

...new personal record for a single day of flying...  We have now done this trip six times in the RV. Twice with Propdog. Lots of interesting flight data along the way.  ...


24 yr old Happy RV-6 Owner/Pilot

(email from Doedo Schipper) "Brooks Mershon bought a local RV6. 125hrs total time. Still flying on his temporary paper license."


Houston area monthly lunch (May)

OK folks, it's time once again for some BSing over ribs or BBQ or what-have-you. Let's get together at Carl's at Weiser this Saturday (5-19), 11:30 as usual.


7A Status Report ...jcarne

I finished the center section bulkhead as well as the 705 bulkhead. The 705 bulkhead took waaaaay more time than I thought it would. Many parts to fabricate and a lot of non-punched parts. I also managed to get most of the way done with the 706 bulkhead. Only a couple more days and I think the bulkheads will all be ready for priming.


Airventure 2018 One Week Wonder build team Update

The planning process is well under way, but there is still opportunity to register as a volunteer.

If you have already registered, you should have received a confirmation e-mail from me, asking you to reply. If you have not received one, please check your SPAM folder.

With Airventure 2018 only a little more than 9 weeks away, the schedule needs to be firmed up soon so if you were intending to participate, please register now.

If there are any teen build groups that are intending to participate, but have not yet registered or contacted me, please do so now.



14A Status Report ...rjkulesa

Felt appropriate to share this here: 23.5 hours later, my first -14A completed component - the Vertical Stabilizer. Not perfect, but safe and a lot of lessons learned. Looking forward to keep going!


Garmin Service Alert 1818 Rev B: Degraded GPS Performance

MAY 16, 2018


Garmin aera 660 products with main software 3.20 (and earlier), D2 Bravo with GPS software version 3.10, (and earlier), and D2 Charlie with GPS software version 4.30 (and earlier) are affected.

To check the D2 Bravo and Charlie GPS software version go to the About page (Settings->System->About) and scroll down to display the GPS software.

The aera 660 main software version can be viewed below the Garmin logo on the power up screen.


The aera 660 and D2 Bravo/Charlie may not be able to acquire a 3-D GPS position fix and/or exhibit degraded GPS performance.


Connect the device to a wifi signal and download the latest unit software. For instructions on loading the latest software refer to the Garmin aera 660 Pilot’s Guide (190-02017-20), D2 Bravo Owner’s Manual (190-01674-00), and/or D2 Charlie Owner’s Manual (190-02236-00). All manuals can be found on www.garmin.com.

The area 660 software can also be downloaded from the Garmin website (https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/p/520775).


This issue has been fixed in D2 Bravo GPS software version 3.30, D2 Charlie GPS software version 4.40, and aera 660 main software version 3.30.



May 16, 2018.   Issue #4,566.
Last Saturday I flew Rob's wife Shannon down to San Angelo so she could catch up with the rest of the relatives for a graduation (route).  Anyone familiar with the DFW to San Angelo route will know that it is mostly this.  Easy flight, all on autopilot, back at 52F before 10am and happy to help my friends.  The highlight of the trip was the WWII hangar at San Angelo that is still standing.  The lady there said they hoped they would last two years when built.  The woodwork was a thing of beauty - of course pictures are required.  Two photos and one pano starting here.  Of the eight hangars built, two still stand.

  And that nearly-always hot TFR near San Angelo?  Predator Bs spiraling up to / down from 18K for border protection (article).
  You know those home improvement shows where they use reclaimed wood?  What do think this hangar with its 77 yr old ceiling is worth?


First flight ...PMLviator RV-12

After 1214hr build over 3 1/2 years 120793 has finally taken flight for the first time today. Yes it has a heavy right wing but flew beautifully and easier than I expected. Thanks goes to all the input all you other pilots put on VAF, it helped a lot during my long build. Thanks, Leon.


First Bahamas trip and things learned

Did my first Bahamas trip over the last 2 weeks. Like others have said, it is very doable and I will return at some point. Thought I would relay a few experiences and lessons learned from my point of view.
I am a 900hr pilot. Finished the RV in 2014. Very comfortable with it and have made about 5 long distance trips. This is my first "over water" trip and first time out of the country.
My plane is classic skyview equipped with ADSB and AP. Garmin 396 also feeds into the Dynon.
After reading other write-ups and using an on-line Caribbean travel site, I was surprised at the weather. It was raining the entire time. Being VFR only, I had more anxiety during the trip wondering when we would be able to come home, than a concern of over water flight, or red tape problems. You forget how much weather data we have access to in the US compared to what is available on Cat and Long Island. Even discussions with US weather briefers led to multiple disclaimers of "well I have limited information, but..."

Customs to and from was no problem. Very user friendly.

I had two plane related problems:
1. My plane stays in a hangar. It has never had any significant rain. After about 15" of rain on long island, I was surprised by hydraulic lock of the engine on trying to start for departure. I pulled the #3 intake tube and drained about 3 cups of water from the sump. Removed the top plugs and cleared the cylinders. That was a bad feeling when I contemplated what I would need to do to get any significant engine repair work done. Started without difficulty and after running on the ground a while, was able to fly home without difficulty. On review of this forum, I was surprised at the limited remarks on this happening to others. I always thought a small amt of water may get in, but now realize all the water from the top of the cowling flows forward and follows the upper radius back into the cowling, landing right on the air cleaner. (horizontal induction). Will address with cowl plugs I suppose. I think the water flow volume would be to much for a 1/8" hole in the snorkel. +/- on the sniffle valve.

2. On my return, one hour from Fort Pierce, my AP released and I had pegged airspeed readings of 511mph and overspend warnings. AI was also going wacky. Alt and navigation otherwise functioning. Backup GPS working well. On my arrival, Dynon dx the problem as a faulty ADHARS-200. They overnighted one to me and that fixed the problem. The plane has 300hrs on it with first flight in 2014. The unit is out of warranty. New one was $1200. Now I have a faulty unit that is a minimum of $250 to diagnose. I don't think it can be used as a backup since the backup unit is a ADHARS-201. I will look in to it.

Beaches were unbelievable and I highly recommend Fernandez Bay Village and Cape Santa Maria.

Didn't get to go island hopping secondary to weather.

I will go again.

Eric Wiley
RV-8 finished 9/15


Mothership Stats...


Lessons Learned / IFR X-C RV-9A ...Ed Wischmeyer

Learned a few things on a very recent trip from Savannah, GA to SE Michigan and back.

When I flew with my friend in Michigan yesterday, I became aware of how sloppy my flying has become. Several reasons: one is that I used to be really, really good hand flying under the hood, and my recollections far surpass present reality. Second, the planes I've flown, RV and others, have had good handling characteristics, lots of power, and most of them have had high drag when you wanted it. I've gotten out of the habit of flying nice traffic patterns because I've had airplanes that didn't require it. Bad form.

I've also been working on a procedure for engaging the autopilot right after takeoff and integrating it into everything else that needs to be done. So the procedure is: set everything up on the flight director, take off, retract flaps at 80 knots, pitch to 7 degrees, autopilot on, and then fuel pump off. Don't engage airspeed hold right over the runway because the autopilot may dive to get speed.

This procedure worked great twice yesterday, but didn't work on the third takeoff -- the autopilot wouldn't engage! Fortunately, fiddling with the autopilot disconnect button and the TOGA button got the autopilot happy again. I wonder how well I would have handled things on the first takeoff, racing to get out ahead of the thunderstorms (ten minutes after I took off, it poured), if the autopilot had decided not to cooperate...

So what are my new year's (it's gotta be new year's somewhere) resolutions?
* Fly precise traffic patterns and get really good at them again. No more screwing around with the pattern just because I can get away with it;
* Do an autopilot takeoff (almost) every time for practice and so that it becomes routine;
* Hand fly the -9A a lot more. Get really good and really precise at it;
* Always put the checklist down in the same place in the cockpit. Twice on this trip I hid it from myself;
* I know all the frequencies at my home airport so I never write them down. Not writing them down is a bad habit for when I go to an unfamiliar airport, like this afternoon, so start writing down frequencies and such.
* Develop and maintain really good habit patterns. When I was a newbie, good habits made flying easier. Now that aging is a fact of life, good habit patterns will help reduce mistakes and blunders;

I’m aware of the maxim that there’s always something more to learn, but sometimes I’m displeased with how much is left, or how much needs to be refreshed.

RV-8 (steam gauges), RV-9A at KSAV (Savannah, GA; dual screen G3X with autopilot, GTN 650)
Previously RV-4, RV-8A, AirCam, Cessna 175
ATP CFII PhD, so I have no excuses when I screw up



May 15, 2018.   Issue #4,565.

Beautiful Day in Duluth ...tfriendshuh

I finally got back up in the air after a three week hiatus - the light was amazing


Airport Camping along the Mississippi? ...Tim 8A

I'm making a trip from Duluth to New Orleans later this week and I'm thinking of spending a night somewhere in between - a nice rural airport where I could pitch a tent and roast a marshmallow or two would be ideal.

Courtesy car or walking distance to a town & restaurant would be a close second.

I'm pretty flexible about where - anywhere south of Dubuque IA & north of Memphis TN would likely fit into my plans.

Any suggestions?



RE: Bottom wing skin to fuselage overlap mismatch

...SgtZim wondering about this too

I know this is an older post, but I'm now doing my fairings and I just match drilled those holes between the fuselage skin and wing.

My issue/question is about the fit of the overlapping skins. my fuselage skin hangs about 1/8" lower than the wing bottom, and clecoing the skins together of course causes major rippling because of the curved surface. I'm thinking about adding a filler strip between the skins just to make a clean joint, but if it is indeed structural - that would not be the best solution.

Also, if it is structural - the whole method of drilling those holes is very poor: You pre-mark lines along the wing skin and then you are supposed to take a stab at finding those holes in the wing by measuring off of those lines and back 3". Far from a good match drill. I had just enough room to squeeze in a hole duplicator, and made good matching holes, but the geometry of the two skins makes pretty bad ripples. Kind of a tradeoff between structure and aerodynamics for me anyway.

I sent my question in to Van's this am, I'll update when I get their comments.

picture of my wing/fuselage joint.


RV7 Empennage Tools- My experience ...RV7ForMe (Europe)

Tools Tools Tools,

I remember before I ordered my empennage kit I spend weeks if not months on this topic. What do I need? What does everyone else buy? What should I buy?

Well. I suppose I should first tell a little bit about me and my Knowledge on this topic: In one word "NON"

As I stated in the beginning of my build log I started building in my college dorm. I had NO tools whatsoever. So I had to buy EVERYTHING!

Since then I have bought a lot of tools and have made a few experiences I would like to share. I'm mainly answering the questions I know I had 2 years ago.

But at the time I had no knowledge on most of these tools or what they are used for. So there is a certain appeal to buying a kit that has it „all“.

In hindsight I must admit that the kits do NOT contain everything you WILL need and contain things that depending on your liking you WILL NOT need. If I had to buy tools today, knowing what I know I would pick and choose only the things I like. But I guess you will not have that luxury unless you go to OSH and play with the tools. Even then I don't know if you have enough time to make that decision.

I was and I still am on a budget so I actually bought what I thought was the least amount of tools for the least amount of money. I decided very early against a Pneumatic squeezer, the DRDT-2 and the tungsten bucking bar. My thought process was that these items were very expensive but not really necessary for the empennage. I wanted just the tools needed for the first kit. I didn’t know if I was going to like building or not, so I did not want to spend a ton of money if I didn’t have to.

ABC’s... No I don’t mean the liquor store. I mean Avery, Brown, Cleaveland tools and there is also Isham/Planetools. (Avery retired and I believe Cleaveland sells their stuff now)

These are 4 tool suppliers that stock „RV-Tool-Kits“ I spend a lot time comparing these kits. I decided on the Brown tool kit. I deleted a few things but mostly bought the kit as is.

There was a lot of talk about: My choice
  • Pneumatic squeezer vs. Hand squeezer
  • DRDT-2 vs. C-frame Dimpler
  • Steel Bucking bar vs. Tungsten Bucking bar
  • Air Drill vs. Battery drill

...a whole lot more text AND PICS


The Trip Home ...Ed_Wischmeyer

So the RV-9A got me home from southeastern Michigan today, and I learned a few more things... things that I probably should have already known...

I woke up briefly at 5 AM and the iPhone showed a big chunk of weather south of Lake Michigan. That's nice, thought I, and went back to sleep. At 6 AM it was looking ornerier and was halfway across the state. Flight service said we had an hour before it got to us. A mad scramble to pack and get out the door ensued, and a school bus with flashing lights added to the chronological excitement.

At the airport, a light rain had started, thunder was audible, and the clouds looked ugly. I picked up the IFR clearance and taxied out, a little surprised that my clearance void time gave me only 7 1/2 minutes instead of the ten minutes I expected. I kind of forgot about that as I was getting everything ready for takeoff, but got off just in time. Hmm. Bad cockpit discipline.

Weather at takeoff was 2 1/2 miles in haze and clear. I took off towards the better weather in the east (spending a few of my 7.5 minutes to taxi), but I got off before the storm came and it really did come on, not too much later. Surprisingly, I could have made that entire flight VFR (taking off in Class G airspace). Scary VFR but legal. And it was early enough that the tint of the sunglasses wasn't appreciated, but my plain old reading glasses were packed. Hmmm.

When I flew with a friend in Michigan yesterday, I became aware of how sloppy my flying has become. Several reasons: one is that I used to be really, really good hand flying under the hood, and my recalled and assumed still valid skills far surpass my present day skills. Second, the planes I've flown, RV and others, have had good handling characteristics, lots of power, and most of them have had high drag when you wanted it. I've gotten out of the habit of flying nice traffic patterns because I've had airplanes that didn't require it. Bad form.

After the early morning scramble to get off, sitting there in the pilot's seat for an hour looking at low contrast scenery through the haze with the autopilot flying, no radio traffic and a warm sun coming up made for a sleepy boy. However, the recliner with the built in massager at Fleming-Mason airport remembered me, and an hour later, I was refreshed and good to go.

Next stop was at Knoxville to have lunch with my sister. How cool is that, to fly across the country top to bottom and be able to stop to have lunch with your sister just because?

I've been working on a procedure for engaging the autopilot right after takeoff and integrating it into everything else that needs to be done: set everything up on the flight director, take off, retract flaps at 80 knots, pitch to 7 degrees, autopilot on, and then fuel pump off. Don't engage airspeed hold right over the runway because the autopilot may dive to get speed. This procedure worked great in Michigan and Kentucky, but didn't work at Knoxville -- the autopilot wouldn't engage! Fortunately, fiddling with the autopilot disconnect button and the TOGA button got the autopilot happy again. I wonder how well I would have handled things coming out of Michigan, racing the weather, if the autopilot had decided not to cooperate...

The last leg wound up being IFR to more conveniently handle the clouds over the Smokey Mountains (a few hours later, those were thunderstorms). Clouds and showers at Savannah that I didn't recall as part of an earlier forecast made it prudent to stay IFR.

So what are my new year's (it's gotta be new year's somewhere) resolutions?
* Fly precise traffic patterns and get really good at them again. No more screwing around with the pattern just because I can get away with it;
* Do an autopilot takeoff (almost) every time for practice;
* Hand fly the -9A a lot more. Get really good and really precise at it;
* Always put the checklist down in the same place. Twice on this trip I hid it from myself;
* Develop and maintain really good habit patterns. When I was a newbie, good habits made flying easier. Now that aging is a fact of life, good habit patterns will help reduce mistakes and blunders;
* I know all the frequencies at my home airport so I never write them down. This is a bad habit for when I go to an unfamiliar airport, so start writing down frequencies and such.

And what did IFR buy me on this trip? Some really scary VFR flying turned into very non-descript IFR flying. And a very worthwhile trip.

RV-8 (steam gauges), RV-9A at KSAV (Savannah, GA; dual screen G3X with autopilot, GTN 650)
Previously RV-4, RV-8A, AirCam, Cessna 175
ATP CFII PhD, so I have no excuses when I screw up


RV-7A Rebirthing Update  ...kentlik

Drilled the latch hole.  So, I snuck into the garage and drilled the latch hole. Was a bit nerve-racking, but I managed to do it without trouble. I will go with Sika.

Also, I found that my diligently, I thought, placed center line was whopperjawed somtin' fierce! So I suspended a piece of Tech line and let the belly tell me where the center was, seems to have worked well as the side dim's are good. Still many trimmings to do yet as well.



May 14, 2018.   Issue #4,564.

Legacy... ...smokyray

With Memorial Day around the corner and incessant babbling notwithstanding, I had to take a moment to reflect, and be thankful...

Yesterday my wife asked me to take her to visit the Grand-kids 325NM away in Midland, TX.* The flight in the RVX is under 2 hours with a casual stop for cheap fuel halfway.
Just another RV adventure...
Leveled off at 8500' and with my brain cell challenged aging mind adrift I realized that I have been operating these wonderful little aircraft for nearly Thirty Years.
Thirty years...
RV4 was just the beginning, light years seems like yesterday.
Van's VHS watched repeatedly to failure.
SLOW BUILD should always be all caps. So many to thank, so little time.
Cross Country a literal term. over 50 times "Vlad style" before 9A's were designed...

I remember...
The ID Backcountry, B17 Escort, 20,000' foray, 1V1 with an F16, too many sunrises and sunsets to count...
I remember donating to Cornerstone Ministries http://www.donateyourplane.com/ and strapping a set of RV4 wings and tail to my Truck...
I remember Arvil engineering the impossible: mating of those wings and tail to an RV6 fuselage. Project X was born...
I remember doing the flyby and victory roll over his funeral with a big grin.

Those very same wings I stare at now as the West TX countryside zips past.

My wife smiles at me. I remember her brushing her teeth beside my Harmon Rocket at Johnson Creek in the rising sun.
I remember Dusty, my UPT T-38 table mate who lost his life in a KC135 on takeoff at Dyess AFB, passing just under the left wing. A true Patriot..
I remember Linchmob and I being comm-jammed so bad over Western Iraq and using our "RV common" (122.22) as a get well frequency.
I remember taking Wolfman on his first combat mission in the F16. I remember him in his RV4 tucked in tight on my Four's wing like glue more times than I can count.
Sure miss him.
Brownwood TX slides by. My Dad dead-sticked a T-33 in there before I was born. I remember Dad executing a perfect greaser from the Four's back seat (despite my challenge, and bet loss to the contrary).
I remember him teaching me to fly before I could drive.
I remember doing a formation takeoff at Hicks field with DR grinning in Danny King's back seat of The Beautiful Doll with a big camera, snapping away on the Wright's 100th anniversary (2003).

Thousands of takeoff and landings relegated to "muscle memory" Climb, level, descend, land. Repeat.
Easy to take for granted...
Easy indeed, with the freedoms we enjoy here in the good old US of A.

My wife reads a letter from Franklin Graham at Samaritan's Purse who spent Easter in Iraq. The cities he visited coincided with places I patrolled and bombed supporting our troops. The people now enjoy their first tastes of a very tentative and fragile Free Iraq. Hallelujah, maybe what we fought for is paying off.
Freedom isn't free and having seen both sides of that tarnished coin I am very thankful. Thankful to live somewhere where I can fly an airplane I built in my garage across free airspace in a free country.
Thankful indeed...



SB 18-03-30...RV-10


JanJan's RV7 Mother's Day RV grin

"Today was another great RV event in the Traynham family! Jan (aka JanJan by the grandkids) flew for the first time in our RV7. Her pilot was her youngest son who, by her account, is qualified after flying Warthogs and now Delta airliners. After the flight she not only had the RV grin, she said, "Now I see why you two love this airplane so much!"

Rob Traynham"


RV7 wing progress ...fcordrey

I have been working along on my wings for some time now and today they came off the stands. They are safely in the wing cradle and the stands were taken up. My dad came up and helped my over the last couple days to get the top skins on and I had the Aileron brackets complete so we installed them as well.

Skins ready to be riveted. many pics


Bowstring Revisited ...petehowell

There has been some talk recently of closing a beautiful grass strip up in northern Minnesota, 9Y0 - Bowstring. The RAF put out a call for help, so I wrote some emails and sent the post on VAF from a visit I made several years ago. The real story is bunch guys flew up in person to talk to the county commissioners. It looks like it worked! Airport manager Ken Reichert really does a nice job at Bowstring!  Many pics...and vid.



Wx Update ...Ed Wischmeyer

So the weather cooperated today. Five flying hours, two fuel stops, five minutes of actual IFR.

The IFR was just north of Asheville, NC, which frequently has clouds about. I was at 6500 and pondering my options. The headwinds were 24 knots, and out west, the rule of thumb is that means you need at least 1000 feet over the mountains for every ten knots of wind. However, it was smooth. So the question was, over, under, or through?

I tried over, but it was clear that 8500 would not be 1000 over the cloud tops, and I didn't want too go to 10,500, even though I had oxygen.

My rule for flying under clouds is that it has to be clear, the weather stable so you know nothing is going to change on you, and with at least one iron clad way out. Hazy killed the first rule, 24 knots of wind killed the second and third. So no under.

So I got IFR at 8000 with some in and out, mostly in, for about five minutes. I watched the autopilot do its thing and when we got to the north edge of the clouds (and the mountains), you could see forever, or nearly.

So five minutes of IFR made the trip work. And coming into Michigan, with a big storm area, IFR meant that I could go take a look if I wanted to. Didn't have to, came in VFR and the 15 knot winds were down the runway.

My kind of trip. Except for getting up real early... fortunately, there was a recliner (with massager!) at the second stop. That was KFGX - Fleming-Mason Airport, in Kentucky, near Cinncinnati, was a great gas stop. The local gas station makes really good burgers. On previous trips, I've stopped at Cynthiana, KY, which is also friendly with a loaner to get you into town.

The last 75 minutes had a tailwind (finally!) and continuous light chop, occasionally moderate, as forecast. What was different was that this chop was all mechanical, with no up and downdrafts. I wish the Georgia chop would take lessons from the Ohio chop...

Point of clarification - this was in the RV-9A, not in the -8, if you didn’t pick up on keeping stuff in the passenger seat accessible.

Follow up: looks like I’ll be in southeast Michigan for two more unplanned days. Plan H was to go to Iowa from her, then home. Plan I is togo straight home if that becomes possible befor going to Iowa. Plan J is what I end up doing.


Status Report ...RV7ForMe

Now that the FL-706B wholes are drilled I enlarged the one originaly prepunched whole to ¼ in.  ...


Osh '18 3rd Annual HBC Beer Tasting (Sun 7/22) ...bullojm1

The natives are getting restless, so it must mean it's time to officially announce the 2018 Oshkosh THIRD Annual HBC Beer Tasting - Sunday, July 22nd, 1700 at the NEW AWESOME HBC Pavilion!

First the foremost - Jerry Fischer - THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!! You are the real reason this is possible!!! Anyone who has access to the sweet nectar of Deschutes Black Butte, toss a bottle in Jerry's tent!

VOLUNTEERS - You are the second most important reason this event is a SUCCESS! Those brave enough to endure the thankless job of fighting off the thirsty restless masses before the 5pm kickoff, I need to solicit your help again this year! Anyone bored on Sunday afternoon who is skilled at putting warm beer in ice buckets is welcome to join our amazing team. DAN LANDRY - you will be missed! Rob, Paul and Frank - consider yourself on the list. PAINLESS - THANKS FOR STEPPING UP! CJ - Looking forward to sampling your cache of Alaskan beers!


Milestone: Panel IN ...MED



May 11, 2018.   Issue #4,563.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled weekend (and my wonderful mother-in-law a happy 93rd birthday).

Milestone (and great pic) ...Scott Emerson RV-14A

Wing kit arrives tomorrow.... had to make room in the garage!  [ed. I mean come on....how do I NOT make this the weekend splash image?!?! v/r,dr]


Waiting for the weather ...Ed Wischmeyer RV-8

Discovered some funny psychology while waiting for the weather.

The original plan was to fly from Savannah, GA, up to southeastern Michigan yesterday. Multiple lines of thunderstorms and a forecast strong crosswind at the destination airport made no-go an easy decision. But the plane was already packed (a plastic tub in the passenger seat holds the oxygen bottle, always a nuisance to keep upright and accessible, plus snacks, water bottles, tie down kit, bug cleaning kit, etc). Clothes and such can get packed almost instantaneously, so I had a free day before the trip.

It was amazing what a de-stressor this unplanned free day was. Ran some errands, got new tires for the car and a CT scan for my back, did laundry, paid bills, all kinds of things that would have otherwise been piled up, waiting for me when I got back home. Maybe when time comes for Oshkosh, I'll load the plane a few days in advance rather than just the day before.

So this morning is another no-go, with thunderstorms and IFR. I'm book legal for IFR, but to be honest with myself, I don't want to fly a whole leg of hard IFR. If it turns into hard IFR, I can do it, even if the autopilot fails, but it wouldn't be fun. And if there are lines of thunderstorms to dodge IFR, even with ADS-B uplink, fuhgeddaboutit. Isolated air mass thunderstorms, VFR, maybe.

Plan C, or whatever letter we're up to, is to go half way this afternoon and finish the trip tomorrow. Unlikely, but all it takes is a phone call to check on the weather. Plan D is the whole trip tomorrow, also unlikely. Plan E is an early morning launch Saturday so as to be there by 1 PM or so. The motivation for the trip is a memorial service, and ain't no point in trying too hard to get there and requiring a second one.

As for today, the plan is to be completely packed and ready to go when I check the weather late morning, with eating and drinking in preparation for the trip. If I don't go, then I'll expend energy on exercise, do a few more chores, etc.

"It's better to be down, wishin' you was up, than up, wishin' you was down."

And it's also better to be at home, waiting for the weather, than in some motel room part way. Less pressure, more restful. Lots better than that six day trip from Georgia to Arizona a few years back, waiting out storms in the southeast and turbulence and high winds out west...


Tate Reeves: Artist

I would like to brag on my son a bit today.  First pic below is the digital image that many will recognize as the engine section of a 1980 Honda Passport moped.  Below that is Tate's rendering using only black acrylic paint (click to enlarge) for an art project.  He received a 99 and some nice words from his art teacher.  It's being showcased at his school, and will live someday on my office wall.  He doesn't get that skill from me, that's for sure.


Bellcrank puzzle ...Mark Jackson RV-8

I am getting ready to install the bellcranks in my RV-8 wing. I reamed out the bushings with a 1/4" drill bit. Bolts go in reasonably easily. I used a 3/8" drill bit and a tap wrench to remove some of the powder coating and stuff from the WD-421 bellcranks.

Mystery - The 3/8 inch drill bit slides through the bellcrank easily. The bushing will not go through. It will slide almost all the way through easily, but then gets stuck with about 1/4" to go. It does this from either side, in either orientation. I thought the bushing was bent but the bolt goes through true. Measured the bushing and it is .375 at either end and in the middle. I thought the bellcrank itself might be bent but the drill bit slides through easily. If the welds were intruding into the barrel, it would bind as soon as I started to put the bushing through.

I am at a loss. Any ideas out there.

I uploaded a video to YouTube of the bellcrank/bushing.


In need of moral support.

It's after 1am and I can't sleep. I went to my airport storage to find pigeons had defecated on my (unwrapped) wings. (They can't have been there more than two weeks.) I pulled my vertical stabilizer and rudder to find the beginnings of some pretty serious corrosion.

My plan is to wash and dry all the parts and wrap them loosely in plastic. The empennage is fairly easy to rebuild if I have to but severe damage to the wings might just kill my desire to continue building (and I have just ordered a finish kit)....

Any thoughts?
Fred Magare
GySgt, USMC (Ret.)


It started.... Mike Newall RV-12

Please save electrons by not saying it has no wings on, that is as old as primer wars. It was a short, idle run to check systems at home and we are very pleased indeed. Once again, just super impressed with what Vans produces and we assemble.


Diagnosing high EGTs - a long sad story...jbell2355

In early October, I signed a purchase agreement on a beautiful RV7A built by a physician here in Michigan. He had his CFI friend fly the plane up to my neck of the woods for a pre-buy inspection. I got the green light from the A&P and sent the wire transfer – the plane was mine!

The CFI and I hopped into the plane for a few landings and then I flew him back home solo. I recall during that first run-up that the engine seemed to run rough on one mag, but the CFI didn’t seem too concerned and it was my first time in the plane, so I didn’t know what was normal. On my 2 hour return flight home, all alone in a new plane, I started getting a high EGT annunciation on cylinder #4. This was disconcerting for me, having never had this kind of engine monitoring info and being new to the aircraft.

Back home, I consulted with the builder who told me that he hadn’t had this issue before. At first it seemed it had to be related to the pre-buy inspection, but what could the mechanic have done that would cause this? We did a little troubleshooting and decided it was probably a bad EGT probe. I flew the plane regularly and found that the annunciation was mostly an issue on climbout and that with proper leaning (or lack thereof), I could mostly manage the high EGT. Cylinder head temps did not appear out of line.

I flew the plane for 25 hours and brought it back to the pre-buy mechanic for a supervised oil change. I uncowled the plane and was shocked to see that the #4 high tension lead was disconnected from the upper plug on cylinder #4 (Lightspeed Ignition). The only good news was that we now knew the source of the problem. The mechanic was very nonchalant about the fact that he left the plug unplugged, and didn’t seem bothered by it at all. I wasn’t very happy, except for the fact that we thought we had solved the problem.

I flew the plane home after the oil change, excited to finally be rid of that irritating flashing red light, but it was still there! For the next few months, I swapped EGT probes, installed a new one, had them tested, checked for wiring problems, and spent a lot of time messing around trying to diagnose the problem. I was about to send the GRT EIS monitor back to be tested, when I shared some engine monitor info with Doug Hamerton at Aero Sport Power (the engine builder). He felt that, based on the data, I was leaning #4 lean of peak and that’s how/why the temp was going back in line with the other cylinders which were leaned ROP.

At this point I had put 80 hours on the engine. I had the mechanic on my field take a look and he told me I had a leaking exhaust valve, so I had him pull the cylinder. Based on the amount of carbon buildup, we decided to pull all the cylinders and have them looked at by Doug.


Aero Sport did their thing and a few weeks later the cylinders were remounted. 2 new pistons, 1 new #4 cylinder and the rest just cleaned up/painted. Once it was all put back together, I fired her up and did the ground run procedures.

Then I flew it, and still had the **** EGT problem!

This isn't the end of the story, but I’m going to stop the story here for a day or two. You should know that we did subsequently find and fix the problem. I’m curious whether anyone would have saved me all this hassle I've been through if I would have asked sooner.

And Klaus, you’re not allowed to answer.


Follow up...

Bad coil.

Kahuna, you hit the nail on the head! Where were you $5,000 ago? Neither mechanic I worked with thought of a bad coil. Neither knew that running the ignition without a plug would burn up the coil.

#4 was running rich after the pre-buy inspection. I assume this was because only 1 plug was firing. Eventually, it started running lean - because enough fouling of the exhaust valve caused a leak on the intake stroke. This was puzzling to me at the time, but now it makes perfect sense.

Anyhow, I hope this post saves someone else a few bucks down the road!



May 10, 2018.   Issue #4,562.
  Might anyone have pictures of a frangible windsock pole mount from their field?  We're looking at putting one on our field.  Two actually.

Another RV-7A takes its first flight!

VAF Community,
After 7.5 years my "QB" RV-7A finally got airborne last week and I already have 10 hours on her. A great moment and I was able to share it with a builder friend who came with though the FAA Qualified Pilot program. I am concentrating almost entirely on the proper engine break-in/seating of rings. I have a few questions for the VAF guys in the know. As I have close to 10 hrs, I am expecting the rings to seat very soon and CHT's to drop. I am wondering what kind of drop I should see. As I am doing the phase one unfortunately a little too late for ideal cool temps in the Las Vegas area. Oil consumption seems somewhat minimal, buy higher than I would expect if the rings had already seated. The highest I've seen is about 418 for a couple min on the initial climb. It's a new stock lycoming IO360-M1B engine. MT CS prop. Wheel pants are not installed. Nose leg/pant is complete and can be installed, but the mains are not completed yet. Below are some cruise reference numbers to help build a picture...

4500 ft, 7170 ft DA, WOT, 2400RPM, OAT 82F, oil temp 184, 130 IAS kts
CHT's: 388,391,373,391

4500 ft, 7130 ft DA, WOT, 2500RPM, OAT 82F, Oil temp 186, 132 IAS kts
CHT's: 392, 397, 375, 382

4500 ft, 7160 ft DA, WOT, 2450RPM, OAT 83F, Oil temp 184, 131 IAS kts
CHT's: 388, 394, 372, 389

My biggest question is when should I expect the seating to occur? Will it be sudden? What kind of drop in CHT's should I see?

If the temp drop is not significant, I think I will need to make cowling adjustments to lower the CHT's so the plane is useful in warm weather.

Thanks for any insight and input. I have read a bit on VAF about the break-in process, but have not seen what to expect.

Chad Hesterman
Boulder City, NV


How to bind a hairline fiberglass crack w/o access to the back side.

I have a small fiberglass crack between the windscreen and the cowling....its exactly centered and about 6 inches below the bottom of the wind screen.  You can't see the crack in the attached picture, but I put an arrow to show where it is (you seriously can't see it in the pic).  Its about 4 inches long, hairline, and allows the fiberglass on the back side of the crack (closest to the windscreen) to stick up about 3/32 of an inch.

Its been that way since I bought the airplane....and it is not getting worse.

My A/P suggested that I get a hypodermic needle and inject some lock tite (or other) adhesive under it to bind it back down.  My question is, what adhesive to use ? It has to basically be instantly bonded because I don't have a way to hold it down while it bonds.  And I don't want it to generate heat and melt the surrounding material.

Ideas ?

Scott Martin
N430WP RV-10


48 States in 7 Days ...planning

Planning a 48 state trip in two weeks with my son. Below is our planned route. We'll try to do it in 7 days but truly have no need or desire to push our limits or even complete the trip unless it's easy and fun. We plan to be as self-sufficient as possible but we all know how those plans go. We don't plan on an oil change as we'll leave with fresh oil and filter and flight time is planned for 40 hours. We may need an O2 refill, though. I'll try to do a trip report but definitely don't expect Vlad quality. Thanks to Joe Rainbolt for his kind help with route planning and advice.


Help: strobe quit working

I promise not to clean my tail lens again!

My tail navigation/strobe light lens was extremely dirty so I decided to pull the bottom rudder flairing where the tail position light/strobe light attaches. Getting the two screws with locking nuts out was tough but I got it done. Cleaned the lens and reinstalled everything. Had to replace one ground connection for the position light but didn’t have to do anything to the strobe light connection. Powered everything up and the strobes didn’t work! Not only the tail light strobe failed to work but the wing tip strobes also quit working!

I don’t understand what happened. Why would the wing tip strobes also quit working. I didn’t even get close to them. Does anyone have any idea what’s happened here?


Sills ...AviatorJ RV-10

...I happened to install the Aerosport ones recently so I can tell you what I did. In my case I had the top on, glassed in and the plane around latch all installed. If you are doing this prior to installing the cabin top you could do it different
  • Removed 3rd door latch block.
  • Measured and trimmed each sill for length and cut.
  • Made measurements with a sliding square about every 6 inches and then transcribed that onto carbon fiber sill piece.
  • Trimmed the sill piece to match the markings with about a 1/16th extra (ie on the outside of the drawn line)
  • Then it was just back and forth holding it up, sanding a bit, holding it back up and sanding some more. Takes time but I wanted it flat on both angles and close to the cabin top filet as possible.
  • Roughed up paint and then coated the inside of the sill with 3M two part adhesive.
  • Clamped the piece in place and removed any overage.
  • Once cured, removed clamps, sanded the bottom of the 3rd latch blocks a bit and called it good.


High Silicon in Oil Analysis Solved (I think)

I think we need to distinguish between the element silicon and the elastomer silicone.

From Wikipedia
Silicon is a chemical element with symbol Si and atomic number 14. A hard and brittle crystalline solid with a blue-grey metallic lustre.

Silicone rubber is an elastomer (rubber-like material) composed of silicone—itself a polymer—containing silicon together with carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. In its uncured state, silicone rubber is a highly-adhesive gel or liquid. In order to convert to a solid, it must be cured, vulcanized, or catalyzed. This is normally carried out in a two-stage process at the point of manufacture into the desired shape, and then in a prolonged post-cure process.

The presence of Silicon in an oil analysis normally indicates the presence of dirt, sand, and other like materials usually ingested into the engine through the air filter and induction system.

The Silicon in Silicone rubber is chemically bonded to the other elements, that is there is no free silicon. So running oil or fuel through a silicone rubber hose should not remove any chemically bonded silicon.


RV-8 and the Turn Around Cape Flattery

Sunday (5/6/18) saw some better weather around the Northwest, so I got a trip out to the coast in. The airframe mounted camera is still pretty shaky (better on some says than others), but the handheld shots aren't bad.



Some thoughts....

I am not a lawyer by any means, and this is not meant to be advice as much as something to think about for all of us. I have had the occasion to perform prebuys as a result of estate sales over the course of many years, and I keep seeing the same thing. The aircraft has been left in a state of disrepair sometimes for so long that the monetary value has greatly depreciated, Sometimes to less than half or more than the value at the time of death. I find it so sad for the family/spouse of the deceased. The aircraft that at one time may have been the pride and joy of the owner or family may now require lots of work and money to even make it saleable.

I know it can be a really tough time for the family, and especially the spouse, but I’ll tell you what I have told my family. If anything happens to me, sell the airplane the next day. Don’t wait. Don’t let emotions get in the way of a financial decision that most certainly have adverse consequences.

Just my thoughts.....



https://duckduckgo.com/app ..for iOS and Android 

For those wanting more privacy online.  Note the first pic below.  It's the Science section of DailyMail.com in the UK - DuckDuckGo's browser running on my iPhone.  No big deal...looks and works just like Safari.  The other three pics show the 46 ad trackers (THREE PAGES) that the DuckDuckGo app blocked while I was viewing this single page.

PS:  VAF and the mothership show 0 ad trackers.  We both get 'C' ratings because the sites aren't encrypted, but I've yet to find an 'A' site.  'B' seems to be the highest score you can get.  So, you know....passing grade. ;^) dr



May 9, 2018.   Issue #4,561.

Rob Reece post RV flight.  Look how happy he looks...;^)


IAC Contest - Impressions of a first time competitor ...1flyingyogi

I just got back yesterday from the Duel in the Desert Contest in Apple Valley, CA. Thursday was registration day and we got one 15 minute slot for practice. There were 28 competitors, and a bunch of awesome aircraft. I felt like a kid in a toy store. There were over half a dozen Extras, an Edge 540, 4-5 Pitts S1 and S2s, a Super D, 2 Eagles, a Great Lakes, and a very humble 160hp, FP prop RV4. Am I in the wrong place?? Haha. I wasted some precious minutes of my practice slot b/c I was not prepared. (I didn't realize I needed fuel, forgot to buckle the rear belts, etc.) Newbie mistakes, which only left me with about 8 minutes to check out the box and do one sequence. Next time I need to get prepared instead of gawking at the cool planes and chatting with their owners.

Friday, we started nice and early with the pilots meeting at 7am and Intermediate starting right after that. Afterwards was everyone else. I did ok, I thought, with a 77.xx% score, but felt I could do better and felt that I normally fly better than that. The density altitude caught me off guard and I learned that I should have started higher and carried more speed to start the maneuvers.


Second round I felt was better, but the judges didn't think so and I got a 76.xx%. I read the comments, but couldn't really understand what some of the comments meant. And the others, I kinda didn't know what to do about them. It would have been nice to have a mentor/ coach at this time. Any volunteers??

Saturday comes and again we had to wake up early, drive 20-25 minutes to the airport from the hotel and we all looked really tired. It was smoking hot.
I had my best flight that day with a score of 78.xx% and an overall finish of 3rd place.

First and second were Pitts S2s flown by a young kid who's obviously very talented and even at only twenty-something years old was a CFII and was flying with an aerobatic flight school in Utah. He has aspirations to become a Red Bull Air Race pilot. Second was a lovely young gal who flies for a collegiate aerobatics team in Colorado. By the end of the contest we were all friends and joking around with each other about who's gonna win the next contest.

AJ Wilder (he flies for the US National Aerobatic Team), who has been helping me out at my practice days, told me to go get the score and comments at the end of the contest so he could go over them with me and tell me what I need to work on for the next contest. They were really helpful tips, but why didn't he tell me this BETWEEN rounds instead of at the END of the contest?? Haha.
That would have been so helpful! I had a great time and learned a bunch and met a lot of really amazing people.

And as icing on the cake, I met and was hanging out with Max, the owner of a gorgeous Extra 330 the whole weekend. After the contest was finished on Saturday, we had some time and he asked me if I wanted to fly his plane from the front seat. Uhm... Of course!! YES!! The stick was so light that it felt like I just needed to BREATH on it and it moves! It's almost telepathic. It took a few minutes to get used to, but after I had a blast! Super nice guy and great pilot. He ended up with Second in Sportsman.

The best speech I heard at the banquet/ award ceremony was given by Howard Kirker, a 70-something legend in the sport. He said that the best measure of success in this sport is if you can grow old. That's much more important than trophies or titles. The goal is to be able to enjoy this sport until you grow old like him. So safety is of utmost importance. He has been flying since 16 years old and competed for 30 years up to Unlimited. He's now dialed back, but still kicking butt in Intermediate. He won first place this weekend. And the other guys say he always does - in a Great Lakes!!

Thanks to IAC 49 for taking me into their chapter and showing me the ropes. Before about a month and half ago, I never even had flown in an aerobatic box or gotten any ground critiquing or coaching and didn't know what the heck I was doing. Without them, I definitely would not have been here to compete. And thanks to Ron, Bill (willyeyeball), Jerry and all the guys on the IAC RV Yahoogroup for their guidance. You guys are a great inspiration for what an RV can do! And of course thanks to VAF and all the members for the incredible resource that it is. I would not even own an RV if it wasn't for this group. And lastly thanks to EAA 96 for coming "straight outta Compton" to support me! Haha. A lot of the following photos are courtesy of my buddies from EAA 96.

Now I gotta get some rest to recover. It was great fun, but sure takes a lot out of ya! Can't wait till the next one!


7A Rebirthing: Canopy PIREP ...kentlik

I got serious about the canopy finally after several days if not weeks.   In Oregon when the sun comes out you better be quick! Got up to 70 plus, but not 75.


Vent line not blocked, but tank pressurized?  ...sbalmos RV-9A

I'm trying to think this one through, whether it's just a nuisance, or I have to pull and fix my petulant cranky left fuel tank again before final inspection.

Currently, my hangar is 70-ish inside. Both left and right tanks have approximately 11 gallons in them, definitely nowhere near the top where fuel would readily enter the vent line. But my left tank is already dripping fuel out my vent. I'm almost certain this is fuel leaking through from the vent line bulkhead fitting inside the tank, probably the vent line fitting Just Loose Enough [tm].

Question 1 - is there enough normal outgassing pressure from fuel in the tank to push fuel in the vent line up the J-U loops of our vent lines inside the fuselage, clearly above the level of the tanks, until the fuel in the line vents overboard?

Now, the more important question... When I raise the tab on the fuel filler cap, and thus unseal it without removing the cap, I get a large hiss. I'm almost certain this is excess outgassing being released from the tank that didn't make it through the vent line in the fuselage, since the vent line was full of fuel.

This pressurization built up over 2 days, on the ground in my hangar. I'm wondering whether I should be concerned with it in a flight scenario? I'm thinking not, because when fuel is being used up from the tank, now we're dealing with a vacuum situation in the tank, and the vent line is used to pull in air into the tank. It's just going to happen to pull that "leaked" fuel back into the tank.

The real concern I have is whether the vacuum in the tank, in normal flight, will become too much for the tank because the vent line is filled with fuel, and maybe compromise the tank? I'm thinking not, but I'm just posing the scenario. Too many memories of reading too many posts here relating to balloon leak tests and pulling vacuums to pull in Locktite to seal weeping rivets, and posts saying that too much pressurization or vacuum will rupture the tank.



May 8, 2018.   Issue #4,560.
  Susie, Tate and I ate dinner Sunday at 4pm because Tate needed to go into work early.  Nothing on TV so after I pushed out the Monday edition we drove out to the airport, waited until about ten minutes before, then launched in the RV to catch the sunset forecast for 8:14pm - turned out to be 8:21pm at 2,000'.  Smooth air and all the airspace was ours.  Landed just as the runway lights came on and still got home before Tate :^).


Monday night was spent digging in the yard trying to find a sprinkler system leak that has been 1) watering a big patch of the backyard below the surface (uncommanded) and 2) keeping me from using the rest of the sprinklers (it's turned off).  Bought some PVC knee boots from Lowes for the festivities.  No way am I paying a sprinkler guy to dig....I can dig for free <g>. 


Use auto plugs- NGK- Check those ferrules are tight

You know, the ferrule, the little metal bit at the top of the plug where you plug the wire in.

I just checked my plane -- four out of four were loose and wobbly.
They are brand new NGK plugs replaced at annual only ~5 hours ago. I didn't notice them to be loose when I installed them, but didn't explicitly check them for this. And I've been using this brand/type for the past 10 years, never noticed this before.

I recently had some ignition trouble (old thread here) which I think was caused by this. First I thought it was caused by ignition wires (two of them were indeed flaky when bent just right so maybe I prevented a future failure there), then I thought it was the Lightspeed coil (one coil was indeed bad), but the root cause, according to Lightspeed, was probably the loose ferrule which causes heating in the coil and failure.

And of course who knows what kind of weak spark you get when that thing is loose...hopefully a gentle turn with a pair of pliers will keep them in place.


Panel Pic ...Rstansley RV-4


7A Rebirthing ...kentlik

I didn't realize how HUGE the passages were in the originals until I made my own.  This helped a lot for fitment, like, a whole bunch!  Maintained my parallel to deck on the side rails as well.


My RV-12 is painted!! Finally! ...pstraub



Turbo69bird in the VAF Forums.  His site with a lot of pics.  Like this one...



May 7, 2018.   Issue #4,559.
  What started as a 'Where should we fly to breakfast this fine Saturday morning?' for three of us turned into a close up and personal tour of warbirds, complete with DC-3 and 1930's era biplane fly-bys.   We picked Mt. Pleasant, TX (KOSA) and drove the courtesy car to Herschel's for, what was described by an airport guy we met, as 'upscale Dairy Queen'.  I ordered grits for the first time in 40 years.  They were good.  The unsweet tea dispenser is today's off topic.

  Pictures and videos can be found HERE.  You want to stand in the shade one foot from the folding mechanism of a Corsair for an hour?  With no crowds whatsoever - just pondering the awesomeness of 78 year old engineering?  Mt. Pleasant, ladies and gentlemen.  I updated the VAF Courtesy Car & Food list accordingly.

  These RVs really are amazing.  I forget sometimes how much fun picking a place and just going there to see what you'll find can be.  Randy brought up the point that bringing a lawn chair and just setting there in the shade watching these old planes fly around the pattern on a Saturday would be just about as good as it gets.  I think he might be right. 
  Hope you had a nice weekend also.


From the Mothership...

"When registering your plane with the FAA, please retain the serial number assigned by Van’s Aircraft to your RV project. With over 10,000 RV’s in the sky, replacing an assigned number with an original number may be a nice touch, however, down the road, it is not practical. Scenario: plane is registered with an “original” serial number. Plane changes hands, Van’s isn’t notified, and someone changes the tail number. Now there is no way to track down the original account. In essence, this means that if a service bulletin is issued regarding some parts intrinsic to that plane, the current owner will not receive the notice. I know the EAA has information to the contrary, but with over 10,000 flying RV’s, it is a matter of safety that Van’s has the ability to contact all RV owners should it become necessary.

Blue skies, and be safe”.
Cynthia A. Schrantz
Administrative Assistant
Van's Aircraft, Inc.


New build - bent aluminum question

Hi All,
I'm a new builder staring a -14A. Working on Vertical Stabilizer (after having done the SportAir class and a few practice kits) and really enjoying it.
Today I was working on the top tip rib, part VS-706, on the step where I need to radius the corners at the Tip Rib flange to ensure a good fit when skins are installed.

While making the radius on the scotch-brite wheel, I accidentally caught it wrong and it bounced off of the wheel and slightly bent the forward tip of the rib.
Picture below:


Mallards Landing Fly-In PIREP ...Vic S

Yesterday was a lot of fun. At one time there were 2 Stearmans, an RV-8, A Woody Pusher, a Maule, a Cherokee 180, RV-10, a Champ, and a C-172 in my back yard. There are days like this when I think someone is going to pinch me and wake me up!

But, the HIGHLIGHT of the day happened at the start of the day. I was on my deck with some Young Eagles I had taken flying and was filling out their Certificates. From behind me I hear someone trying to get my attention, and so I turn around and it is a young gentleman who introduces his wife and 9 month-old baby girl. He says he just wanted to come by and say thanks, as I took him for his Young Eagle ride when he was 16, and now he is a commercial pilot.

How neat is that? He is now the 3rd YE that has come back to Mallards and told me they got their pilot's license.

I know many of you do the same, and hopefully have some of the same stories to share. So, keep doing it!!! Who knows whom we will inspire? I bet some of us could be sitting in a rosking chair someday watching one of these new pilots landing on Mars.


Whelen Tail Strobe Wire Routing ...Jeff A

This is from when I had the Whelen strobe installed, but the same idea worked for the Suntail.


Milestone: Private Pilot!

After about 9 months, 55 flight hours, and around $6,000 (estimating, I haven't added everything up yet) I am finally a private pilot. Working around the runway closures at my base airport, I took my check ride this past Monday on a typically gusty north Texas day. It wasn't my best flying, considering the conditions, but I passed!

With training done I will have quite a bit more time and money to work on the RV. I'm still working to get this thread caught up with my actual progress.

Zach Miller
RV-7 Empennage


Forward top skin tip ...RV-8

I fitted the top skin before cutting out the panel for the baggage door. While fitting I took the left over angle from rolling the lower fuselage skin to make a couple of hold bars between the firewall and the next aft bulkhead. This holds everything aligned for baggage door and cowl fitup.



May 4, 2018.   Issue #4,558.
  Heads up N. Texas, TFR Friday...VIP movement.  Milestone this weekend: Met my wife on 5/5 back in 1984 - 34 years ago.  Nickel beer night (the mullet apparently irresistible).  We're celebrating the anniversary trying to figure out what the cost will be on our first colonoscopies (she and I both 52).  Our self-employed insurance is <expletive> - asking them the question 'How much will my colonoscopy cost me?' apparently requires a Cray supercomputer and a Manhattan Project sized team of scientists.  An hour on the phone with them produced no answer.  Frustrating.
  Wishing you and yours a happy, safe and RV-filled colonoscopy...I mean weekend.  Sorry, dealing with a lotta shit here. (badump)

  [ed. Update: Email from Steven B.  Try this.  Flat rate.  Steven, thank you! dr]

Cedar Meadows RV-12 PIREP ...Vlad the traveller

Today two RV12 landed at Cedar Meadows.  [ed. Fly-in May 26. dr] Dave and Mark followed me all the way from PA and MD good job guys! Landed long and still were able to stop at the middle of 3,000 feet runway. Come back and show them some attendance. <g>


RV-8 Back Seat Stick Base Cover ...Ron RV8

Pretty easy to do in aluminum. Do a card stock stretch-out first... I took out the drink holder, too much chance of water bottle interference with the stick... Water bottle now lays forward of the cover, still accessible....


Carb Update: Problem Solved ...todehnal RV-12

Well, I'm pretty sure that I have found my problem as well. First, a few more details.

After reading everything that i could find on the subject, all things pointed to the cards, and that included suggestions from Rotax gurus. I ordered the small carb kits from Lockwood, and when they arrived, I went to work. By the way, like many things, the scary part of the job was the unknown. After watching a few videos, and reading up on the process, I set up a very clean area with lots of light an a magnifying glass. It was really pretty straight forward, and to be honest, I didn't find the smoking gun. There was a little black residue hear and there which cleaned off nicely. Oh, I guess the choke works a bit smoother now.

After re-installing the carbs and doing a run up, the roughness was still there on Ignition A, and with all of the black plugs, I was still unable to identify the bad cylinder. So much for carbs being the problem. Everything that I read stated that ignition component failure is very rare, but I thoroughly did a physical inspection again of all ignition connections. I tugged on every connector, seated every plug, and verified that there were no broken or chafed parts.

So, I ran it up again and had the same roughness but this time I kept it up at about 3600 rpm, putting up with the roughness for a couple of minutes and the did a radical shutdown. This time I could detect that cylinder 1 plugs were worse. .On a whim, and really not expecting anything good to come of it, I dig out the old plugs, picked the best looking two and put them in cylinder 1.

Wow! It was like magic! So I did the carb balance and everything looks good. Bottom line, I guess I had replaced a bad spark plug with a fresh out of the box bad spark plug. Thanks for everyone's help. ..........Tom


14A Status Report ...didja

Currently nearly completed with the tail cone. Started Nov 1st of 2017. I am expecting my wing kit to arrive in about a week or two!!!


May/June FAA Safety Briefing Online


7A Rebirthing Update ...kentlik

So the weather has been far too cold to cut acrylic. I have since moved to skirting work:

Here are the side skirts:


RV Interiors Press Release ...Rich Meske

"Take advantage of the Spring and plan to add one of our interior packages to your aircraft. We are offering interiors for models RV-6, RV-7, and RV-9. Other aircraft are possible as well. Choose your own materials and we will make your seats, armrests, and stick boots. The seats feature an inflatable lumbar support. An optional EZ-Step can be incorporated in the seat. It is a convenient place for a person to put their foot upon entering the aircraft. See this feature along with our newest products at aircraftextras.com."



May 3, 2018.   Issue #4,557.
Heads up N. Texas, TFR Friday...VIP movement.

West Coast Ravens at Beale Air Force Air Show ...360* video (huh?)

...clip sent to me by AX-O.  If you have a smart phone or tablet you can 'look around' during playback by moving your phone.  If your browser supports it on your desktop you can change your view by dragging your mouse.

I wonder if you'll do what I did - move the phone to follow lead pitch up and over to the right, then spin around to AX-O's head and watch him alternate attention between the other three planes and his panel as he gets configured for landing.  Neat video!!!


Gentle Reminder from the Mothership RE: FAA Registration

"It appears that a few members in our community need a gentle reminder that a paper trail of ownership needs to be on file before an 8050-2 Aircraft Bill of Sale can be issued by Van’s for any RV aircraft. A plane may be comprised of kits purchased from several different individuals, and as long as there is documentation in the form of bill of sales in the file for each component, an 8050-2 Aircraft Bill of Sale can be issued. If the documentation does not exist, then the builder will need to contact the FAA and register it using an original make and model of his or her own device."


RV-Lancair Brotherhood Day ...snopercod

Today, Darwin and I flew to Hickory for a cheesburger. There's a great little burger joint right in the terminal. As an added bonus, there's also an air museum there. The docents told us there's having a "grand opening" of the P-3 Orion on the 19th featuring the retired Admiral [?] who used to be in charge of the entire fleet of sub hunters. Burgers and hot dogs will be served.


I'm now an owner -)

Hi everyone. Thought I would introduce myself. After a lot of searching which almost felt like a quest at times, I am proud to officially join the VANS community as an owner.

My first build was a Sonex. The goal was to see if I liked owning and building. One of those was proved true, I love owning my own plane. The other, not so much. I love spending my time in the air, no question about that.

The search for an RV took the better part of a year. After a several failed attempts, followed by a failed pre-buy, my luck changed and a perfect bird popped up not far from my home base.

Thanks to Vic for all the help and time over the past year. I have learned a lot and look forward to learning from everyone.

I am now a proud owner of an RV-9A tip up powered by an O-320. I've logged 14 hours in the past week and couldn't be happier. So glad to be a Vans owner. Hope to meet some of you at Oshkosh this year. ...snip
Cheers, Josh


Another small step ...RepmikeBrown

Actually got to take her out for a stroll around the the ramp for first time. A little fuel and taxi back


Improving wingtip fit?

As I'm trial fitting the wingtips, and especially when adding the rib, it looks like there is noticeable distortion when riveting the curved tip to a flat rib. I'm considering filling in that gap with epoxy/flox mix. Anyone else try this, or see potential problems?  more pics


RV flyin at Ramona (KRNM )

Just a reminder the Ramona RV flyin BBQ is May 5, 10-2pm.  Always great to see a bunch of beautiful RVs on the ramp at one time, Checkout the flier or contact me for info.


Ongoing Maintainence ...Piper J3 RV-12

It looks like most ignition mounting bracket failures are the stubby 90 degree brackets on the back of the ignition coils. I have not had this failure, but now at my latest oil change (325TT), I noticed the long front bracket has failed just below the 90 degree bend. This is PN 29 in the attached drawing. The bracket is 0.080” Stainless Steel. I have fabricated a new bracket from 1/8” mild steel and added 1/8” to the overall width for additional strength.

Attached photos show broken bracket and 1st iteration of new bracket to test fit. A second more professional bracket is now installed on the engine


Do you know where I can get one of these?

...asking for a bud.  I started a thread


6th (sort of) annual Cedar Meadows fly-in VA/WV ...May 26

Saturday May 26
Cedar Meadows Airpark, located between Winchester, VA and Martinsburg, WV
Runway information: We are not on sectional charts, but Highview Farms (61VA) is about 1 mile SE. RW 9/27 Left traffic.
3000 X 80 good turf. Pattern Altitude 1500. Monitor 122.9
Runway condition is suitable for "A" models. ALL aircraft welcome.
Wi-Fi available. Not broadband, but acceptable.
Schedule: Open at 9am. Food from 11am to 1 pm. Free lunch. Menu TBD.
Formation demonstration courtesy Dragon Flight at approximately 11am. Chicken bombing contest at 1pm.
Restroom on site.
Overnight camping allowed. Adult beverages begin at 5pm (or earlier) Probably grill again for dinner.



May 2, 2018.   Issue #4,556.

RV Hotel List Updated and Current


PH Aviation Flap Actuator Install in a RV-7

Yesterday I finished the installation of a PH Aviation flap actuator. This is a short post of the fabrication and installation process. As the website states, it's not a direct replacement. But it was easy nonetheless

I first learned about this new actuator by reading this thread on VAF.
Here's the website where I purchased the actuator. First thing I did was email Pat Hatch with some questions. Pat answered really fast and was easy to communicate with.

So the installation... Pat's instructions were for a RV-6. After looking the plans over, I decided the edge distance for the pivot bolt hole in the bracket was a little too skinny for my tastes. So I did a little redesign.

I basically used some of the methods Van's uses for their actuator and combined that with the RV-6 plans...shook it up a little and came out with a nice installation. I kept the geometry the same as the plans for the -6, so I didn't have to reinvent the wheel and could use the rest of their plan guidelines.

Just to get orientated, here's a photo from Pat's website showing the difference between the Van's installation compared to theirs.
Pat's is on the right, Van's on the left.  ...


David Paule RV-3B Status Report


Rotating Wing Paint Rig

...seen at GLO Custom.  I just thought it was neat so I took some pics.




JCarne RV-7A Status Report

Well I received my replacement angle for the firewall so I thought I would finish it up. Priming was on Friday followed by an enormous amount of time riveting the parts over the weekend. I can't believe how time consuming riving the firewall was since the plate had to be elevated for the flange. I must have turned that firewall over a hundred times in the process. Glad it's all riveted and I even got back to the center section. Bolting some of the control pieces on was fun!  ...



May 1, 2018.   Issue #4,555.

Couple of nearly identical RV-8 schemes at Richmond
Aircraft (enlarge).  Made it the May Wallpaper.


Recent Anglo/American RV7 alliance.

Brian Delamater (some may remember him?) spent 5 years (2008-13) building his RV7 then had to stop for three years. He was then able to restart work in 2016 but with much regret circumstances meant that he was never able to finish her. The right decision for Brian was to sell her, and in Jan 2017 she was advertised, on here, from his S.Carolina home.

This side of the pond (on the south coast of England) I saw Brian's advertisement and an Anglo/American deal was born! Brian was meticulous in sending me everything to finish her (except an engine and prop which had already been sold 3 years earlier). She flew for the first time last week, so one more RV7 can be added to the list of flying RV7s, and here's a not very good youtube video of her in flight. https://youtu.be/oGMm01cFKi4

Many thanks to Brian, who did a great job building most of her, and many thanks to those of you who helped Brian and me get her flying.

Happy Flying.




VAF Charity Cap Sighting

Chris Pratt at Angkor Wat, Siem Reap, Cambodia, April 4,2018.

Went looking for ancient alien landing sites as described on the History Channel. I couldn’t seem to find any sites or spaceships. If the ships were built out of sandstone like the rest of the Wat that could explain why no evidence was found – the ships burned up on entry into the atmosphere.

But seriously, it’s a truly impressive site built on a massive scale. A bucket list item.


The spline-drive BC462-H as primary alternator- a success story!

Many hundreds of experimental and certified aircraft sport B&C Specialty Product’s various spline-driven alternators as backups, and by all accounts they have an exemplary record for service and reliability over the past 20+ years. With the recent introduction of the more powerful BC462-H, rated at 60 Amps output in the belt driven version, I began thinking about using one as sole alternator for my “electron-dependent” RV-7A.

The idea of eliminating the belt-driven unit up front along with its HEAVY steel support brackets, getting rid of the belt, and even milling the drive pulley off of the flywheel is compelling. I’d be reducing the polar moment of inertia, lowering weight on the nose wheel, improving CG, and adding the crowbar OV protection built into B&C’s external regulator in one fell swoop. The quality and reliability of B&C products is legendary. ...


Eagle's Nest Projects - Alex McGonegal 1st Solo - Central High School (WI) ...R.E. Butcher

-Text msg received from Jim Senft, ENP Program Director at Central high school, Westosha, WI.
“Ernie, we’re having a problem keeping fuel in the tank of our RV-12, Falcon-1. It goes through the tank, through the fuel lines, into the carbs, into the cylinders, gets burned, and goes out the exhaust. I think the issue is we now have some nice weather and the kids are flying a lot… we now have 650 hours on Falcon-1!”

Shortly thereafter I received this email…

"Central High School STEM Aviation program is celebrating another Solo. Senior Alex McGonegal has become our latest Eagle’s Nest student to solo. It was April 24th, a beautiful day in Burlington Wisconsin just before sunset. Winds were light, favoring runway 29. Alex and his flight instructor, Mr. Dan Lund, just finished his lessons for the day. Mr. Lund then gave Alex some last instructions before exiting the aircraft; “Just fly the aircraft like you have been taught”, he said. Alex proceeded to runway 29, run-up checklist complete, traffic call over the radio, taxied to 29 for takeoff. Alex completed three nice landing before taking back to Eagle’s nest hanger to have his shirt cut. Alex plans to complete this private pilot license this summer before heading to Michigan Technological University this fall to study Chemical Engineering. Congratulation to Alex and is flight instructor Dan Lund." -Jim Senft

Stay tuned for more from Alex and Dan…


650 hrs condition inspection

...still, not much carb heat cable wear


PPG DC concept base paint and vinyl stripes

"Not a fancy scheme but 10 years and 460 hours and still looks as good as new. Photo taken last week, aircraft is hangared."