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Old 01-20-2022, 04:15 PM
AWeingram (RV14) AWeingram (RV14) is offline
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Sussex County NJ
Posts: 26
Default Its order an engine time... Help me please.

OK, after languishing for 6 or 7 years my empennage kit is nearing completion (Im serial number 140094)

Vans' tells me my quick build fuselage will be here in April or May (I'll be long out of parts by then) and my wings are probably the end of 22.

They suggested that I order the engine and finish kit now, and as I don't see myself losing my momentum (Living in a place with 100 RVs flying, Spruce Creek, has a way of keeping you motivated) its time to order the finish kit and engine I guess.

Soooooooo.... I have some options, and no good description. I did try and search for them but didn't get a result.

So anyway, What is the difference between Dual Lycoming EIS ignition and Dual E-Mags, and Avstar Freediome Fuel system vs Airflow performance fuel system.

And if you don't mind, run down my prop options as well, but I am leaning MT since they are right down the road at Deland.

Thanks Guys!


PS After I get smacked around for asking a probably obvious question will a million answers already there, then I can start another primer war. (No I'm not, though initially I started out yes to priming)
Serial Number 140094

Last edited by AWeingram (RV14) : 01-20-2022 at 04:19 PM.
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Old 01-21-2022, 04:10 AM
squeakersc063 squeakersc063 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2020
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 12

Iím just gonna pop a chair down and write down whatever the smart people tell you
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Old 01-21-2022, 05:24 AM
Jetmart's Avatar
Jetmart Jetmart is offline
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Windsor, Ontario
Posts: 521

I am no expert. I can tell you what I did and why. At the time the EXP engine was not available. I went with the Thunderbolt mostly because it was recommended by my friends. I went with one Emag and one conventional impulse mag mostly because I'm old school and was not ready to depend totally on Emags. It was mostly out of ignorance. If I was doing it again I would definitely go with 2 Emags. They are great. I went with the Avstar because it was more common at the time.
I went with the standard 2 blade Hartzell prop. It is a fair bit cheaper. Also there is not that great of performance difference especially if flying off of lower altitude airports. The 14 is already full of performance. Takeoff distance would not be substantially different and possibly cruise performance not as good with the 3 blade.

If I were doing over again I would definitely go with the EXP option and likely not the Thunderbolt version. Only to save a few bucks. As said previously I would go with two Emags and stay with the 2 blade Hartzell.

Looking forward to what others have to say.
Glenn Martin
Windsor, Ontario
1941 Tiger Moth
2017 Waco YMF-5
RV-14 Kit # 140694 - First Flight June 22, 2021
RV-14 A - Kit Ordered February 8, 2022
2022 Dues Paid

Last edited by Jetmart : 01-21-2022 at 09:13 AM.
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Old 01-21-2022, 09:09 AM
lipper03 lipper03 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2021
Location: Fulshear, TX
Posts: 69
Default EXP119

I think the EXP119 only comes with the Airflow FIS, so it's really down to if you want the "upgraded/ performance balanced" EXP-119 or not. It looks like a $2.5k delta for the "extra fine balance". With building a ~$300k replacement value plane, I'm planning on doing the EXP119.

I'm still a ways out from an engine, but I'm also wanting full EIS. Taking care of a battery these days and the solid state electronics like the Vertical Power systems PPS and VP-X reduce failure rates in my opinion.

Build Started 12/31/21-
Section 6 complete 1/30/22
Section 7 complete 3/27/22
*Emp Ordered 9/27/21- Est crate June 2022
*QB Fuselage Ordered 11/3/21- Est 1Q23
*QB Wings Ordered 2/18/22- Est 2Q23
*YIO-390-EXP119 Engine Ordered 5/14/22- Est 2Q24

PA-28-236 N419SB

VAF donation 2021/22

CAF Member
EAA Member
AOPA Member
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Old 01-21-2022, 09:21 AM
spstout spstout is offline
Join Date: Oct 2021
Location: Windsor, CO USA
Posts: 24

Mind you, I have not started my build yet but my research so far has led me to the EXP-119 with emags. If nothing changes in the many moons between now and completion, that is what I will be putting in. As far as prop, I am leaning toward the Harzell Explorer 3 blade. I am looking forward to what everyone has to say because I have about two years before I have to order!

RV 14 empennage, QB wings, and QB fuselage ordered!
N725S reserved

Follow my journey at
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2021, 2022 dues happily paid
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Old 01-21-2022, 10:07 AM
Tom023 Tom023 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Cypress, TX
Posts: 481

Four years ago I was at OSH and in your position and just checked the boxes for Thunderbolt after meeting Jeff Schans (Thunderbolt Manager), one Emag after speaking with Brad (two were not offered at the time) and the strong recommendation for the AFP FM-150 from a unmentioned employee of Vans at the time. Since then I have had several conversations with Jeff, Brad, Don/Kyle at AFP which have all been invaluable. These guys really support the experimental community. That alone would have me make the same choices with the EXP option.
RV14A #140083
Flying! 8/12/19
2022 Donation
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Old 01-21-2022, 10:34 AM
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KeithB KeithB is offline
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Granbury, TX
Posts: 330

I have a flying RV-14A and a second under construction. The flying plane was built with a Superior XP400 (wonderful engine, until it wasnít) and now has a Thunderbolt IO390 - it has the original Precision Airmotive fuel injection and dual Pmags. The prop is a Hartsell 2 blade blended airfoil. The Superior engine lasted 500 hours and the Thunderbolt has 300 hours. This is just to say I have experience in forming my opinion.

My new RV-14A will have a Thunderbolt EXP119 engine with dual Pmags. I am undecided on a prop and will investigate a composite 3 blade - the pluses would be smoothness/vibration and looks, the negatives would be cost and affect on aft CG at max gross.
Keith Brown

RV-14A Builder - kit #136 (complete) and #770 (in process)
N314KC - First flight Mar 8, 2017, 24th in the air, >800 hrs
XP-400 Aero Sport Power, replaced with Lyc Thunderbolt 390
RV-6A sold
Sport Pilot (weight-shift control) - Airborne XT912
Dues paid 9/2021
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Old 01-21-2022, 12:35 PM
dmattmul dmattmul is offline
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Spring Hill, FL
Posts: 297

The 14 is delightful to fly and hard to go wrong. I used 2 Earth X batteries (On the firewall), composite 3 blade (WW) and pad mount alternator so the CG came in more aft than most but within tolerance. There are some combinations that do not work (2 heavy pilots, max baggage, min fuel) but for my flying no issues. Jeff Schans at Thunderbolt is great to work with and the extra attention the engine gets well worth it. (In my view) The airframe seems to land easier with CG in the aft end of the range and this has been reported by several pilots. Mine the same so I keep one folding bike in the back even when I don't need it. The EFII increases build time but a very nice system. Good luck and allow time for the QB's and finishing kit.
RV-14A QB building, Lycoming 390 Thunderbolt arrived July 2019, Garmin avionics, Vertical Power, EFII-32 Ignition and Fuel, Whirlwind 300-72, EarthX batteries, Parts became a real airplane 8/15/2020.
Started RV-10 Nov 2020. Empennage arrived (Built) Working on QB kits. Garmin avionics, Vertical Power, EFII-32 Ignition and Fuel, Whirlwind 3 blade, EarthX batteries, real airplane hopefully early 2024. Paid subscriber and more. (Worth every dollar contributed).
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