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Old 07-03-2022, 08:35 AM
gasman gasman is offline
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Sonoma County
Posts: 4,523
Default After 50 Years, Is It Still The Best??

I posted this article in 2007

My question to those who have owned one and moved on to bigger and better. Is it still the best handling homebuilt out there??
VAF #897 Warren Moretti
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Old 07-03-2022, 09:09 AM
Rich Pulman Rich Pulman is offline
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: CYQA Canada
Posts: 144

Originally Posted by gasman View Post
I posted this article in 2007

My question to those who have owned one and moved on to bigger and better. Is it still the best handling homebuilt out there??
I don't know about other makes of homebuilt aircraft, but compared to the other RV models I've flown (7, 8, 10) it is certainly the most responsive and nimble of the bunch.
RV-3A (C-FARV) bought, then sold
RV-8 (C-FJSE) bought
RV-8 (C-FRAP) still building....

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Old 07-03-2022, 09:15 AM
rmarshall234 rmarshall234 is offline
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: San Diego, CA
Posts: 396
Default Still the best

For what it was designed to do, I'd say "yes". Van invented the term "total performance" and with a speed envelope from 50 - 200 mph he pretty much proved his point. And then there are all the refinements through the years and the support network - as evidenced by this forum here - I don't think anyone else has come close. They've moved on to other missions like STOL aircraft instead and the guys at Cub Crafters have had similar (but different) success.

Now as for "best handling", I'm pretty sure the Acroduster I'm building will be a better handling airplane than my RV-3 was and is more aesthetically appealing, but that's comparing apples to oranges.
Robert Marshall
RV-3 N333LT - 500hrs PIC
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Old 07-03-2022, 12:16 PM
RV8JD RV8JD is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 543

Here is the article (originally published in the November 1973 issue of Air Progress) from the website of the author, Budd Davisson:
Carl N.

Last edited by RV8JD : 07-03-2022 at 12:26 PM.
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Old 07-03-2022, 01:20 PM
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Ed_Wischmeyer Ed_Wischmeyer is offline
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Savannah, GA
Posts: 1,763

Some years back, there was an article in Kitplanes, I believe, asking three writers this same question. Two of the three said RV-4. That was my second choice behind the Thunder Mustang, chosen because it's ailerons didn't get heavy at speed. At least, not up to the mid-200s.

Of course, there's more than handling as airplane criteria -- performance, ride in turbulence, maintainability, interior comfort, visibility, etc. Not that the RVs don't do well, there, mostly.
RV-9A at KSAV (Savannah, GA; dual G3X Touch with autopilot, GTN650, GTX330ES, GDL52 ADSB-In)
Previously RV-4, RV-8, RV-8A, AirCam, Cessna 175
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Old 07-03-2022, 01:43 PM
swjohnsey swjohnsey is offline
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Kingsville, TX
Posts: 495

I don't think so. I had 0-32 160hp RV-3 with wood prop and RV-4 with IO-360 and CS. I think the RV-4 is better, faster, more range.
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