Van's Aircraft Total Performance RV Kit Planes

First Flights – page 3

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From: Jason
Subject: First Flight
Date sent: Fri, 3 Jan 2014

Hi Vans

Yesterday January 02, 2014 we graced the sky in our brand new RV-7 S/N 71340 Reg ZU-LOL.

Professionally built by Jan Hanekom. He is a master of RV building. His efforts hugely appreciated.

RV’s are simply the best.


           Thanks for a great product
           Jason Beam
           South Africa
           [ Jason at ]


Subject: First Flight
From: Doug McMullin
Date sent: Thu, 2 Jan 2014

After 23 years of slow building construction, N262DM, RV-6. (#20201) flew for the first time
on March 23,2012 at Ottawa,KS (OWI) with Loal Wood flying chase in his RV-7.

The aircraft has a Lyc. 0-360-A1A, Hartzell prop, dual Dynons, Garmin GNS-430W, 327 Trans., 340 audio, and Tru-Trak auto.

First flight was great ( flew like an RV should ), and it continues to produce the RV grin every time we fly !


           Douglas McMullin
           Wellsville, KS.
           [ mcmullink68 at ]


From: Delbert Thurman
Subject: First Flight
Date sent: Mon, 30 Dec 2013

On December 27, 2013 I made the first flight with my RV-12.
All went well. Now just waiting on the weather to cooperate so I can get back up to finish my 10 solo hours.

Delbert Thurman
[ delbe1952 at ]


Subject: First flight of my RV-8A
From: Al Dilger
Date sent: Sun, 29 Dec 2013

After eight years and countless hours of working and building, my "faster build" ( no such thing as quick build") took to the air on April 20, 2013 @ L45 Bakersfield CA. with my son Peter flying chase in his RV-4.
I flew a Cessna 162 for an hour prior to my first flight as it had been awhile since I had flown single engine. The RV turned out to be much easier to fly and much more stable.

It has Lycoming IO 360 180hp MT 3 Blade, Aerotronics built the panel w/ Garmen G3X dual screen, Flightline Interiors did seats/side panels.

My best friend John Lauer who built a Harmon Rocket inspired me to buy my RV-8A, I was so impressed with what he had done I knew I had to build my own. My best friend and tech adviser passed away one year later which caused me to stop, but as a tribute to him I started again after a two year hiatus and completed it. It is what he would have wanted me to do.

I want to thank all the guys@ L45 for borrowed tools, hardware and company during the build specifically John Harmon for endless advice and Bobby Baker for helping me with the build especially for those things that I had no idea how to do, like fiberglass.

Kudos also to the Vans builder help guys for countless questions along with several of the vendors of parts, all were very accommodating in answering questions. The Vans parts folks also get a big atta boy for putting up with orders made, returned and remade all while remaining friendly and efficient.

I love the way she flies, stable, solid and quick, first flight was uneventful with only a left wing low condition which was corrected by adding an aileron fixed trim tab. I also installed a fixed rudder trim as well. I must say that my wife Rita deserves the most credit for putting up with my being gone all day almost every day for the last year and half, and at night have my head stuck in manuals, or on line ordering parts & coming home with torn jeans, grease, paint, glue, gas, epoxy, fiberglass, spending all the money and not wanting to go anywhere. She suggested I name it my "Aluminum Mistress" I remember when I bought the fuselage home and put in the garage, she came out took one look and said "I ain't getting in that". She has never cared much for flying, so the added benefit came after her first flight on July 28th when she proclaimed " I love it".

About 75 hours on her now and we are looking forward to flying to many new destinations next year.


          Thanks you Van's for a great airplane!
          Al Dilger
          [ avdilger at ]


Subject: First flight RV-3B
From: Wayne Baker
Date sent: Sat, 28 Dec 2013

On 12-28-13 I made the first flight of NX773WB.

It flies straight and handles like an RV. It has a O-360-A1A and a wood prop from Props Inc. Empty weight is 803 lbs. Recieved tail kit on 10-11-12 and airworthy certificate 11-5-13. This is my sixth first flight of an RV and probably not the last.


          Wayne Baker
          Hallsville, TX
          [ rwb877 at ]


From: Dana Saucier
Subject: First Flight RV-10 N779DS
Date sent: Sun, 22 Dec 2013

I am proud to share that on 12/18/13, I conducted my first flight of my Vans RV-10 over the winter skies of Central Ohio. The first flight lasted about 40 minutes and the plane flew perfectly. She is equipped with a Lycoming IO-540, Slick Mags, Airflow Performance Purge Valve, Hartzell Prop, Dual Dynon Skyviews, Tru-trak autopilot, Garmin CNX80/MX20, ICOM backup com, Garmin GMA 340 audio panel, motor by Barrett Precision Aircraft Engines, Aerosport Products carbon fiber panel/overhead, interior panels, and carpeting, TSFlightlines fuel and brake lines, Oregon Aero seating, Avionics and harnesses from Stein Air, McFarlane controls, TCW Technologies Safety Trim and several Control Valve Servo kits, and PPG paint, and a few steam gauges.

I received excellent transition training from David Maib. I want to thank my good friends for lending their expertise and cheer leading me through to the end, Joe Stausbaugh of Custom Aeroworks, Geoff Combs of Aerosport Products, Allen Barrett of BPA, Tom Swearegen of TSFlightlines, Todd Stanton painter, Mike Kundrat, Candy Eichenberger of Avinsure Agency, and fellow builder Bob Leffler plus so many others. Most of all, I want to thank my wife and two daughters for supporting me all the way.


           Dana Saucier
           [ dana.saucier at ]


From: David Wilkinson
Subject: ZK-WLK First Flight
Date sent: Fri, 13 Dec 2013

Serial number 83304 First Flight 13 December 2013 – RV-8

Flown from North Shore Airfield in Auckland New Zealand.

What a fantastic aircraft….. 2 hours on first day over 3 flights with no issues.

Aircraft has aerosport IO-375 with Hartzel composite prop. Dynon Skyview system, inverted oil, smoke system etc….

See for lots of photos.


         Thanks to all the staff at Vans for their help and support….
         David Wilkinson
         [ david at ]


From: Alan Jensen
Date: December 12, 2013
Subject: RV-8 First Flight

Hi Vans,

Add another successful first flight to your Hobbs.  N246AJ took to the air on October 1, 2013. The flight was uneventful (translated - fantastic) and the airplane flew straight and level with no major squawks. The numbers show better than published so Vans does a good job representing their airplanes. She has a Lycoming M1B with dual Lightspeed ignitions, dual batteries, and an MT-12 prop. I put in a Dynon D100 and D120 with a Garmin 496 GPS/327 transponder, an iCom radio, a PS audio panel, a Tru Trak IIVS autopilot and a few steam Gage's for old times sake. The empty weight is 1,134 lbs. Many thanks for all the help from Vans and my fellow builders at F70. My wife sewed a beautiful interior. I could not have completed this project without the help and tolerant support of my wife Ann and our wonderful family.


           Alan Jensen
           Murrietta, CA
           [ dralanjensen at ]


From: Dave Edtl
Subject: First Flight for Dave Edtl
Date sent: Mon, 9 Dec 2013

The first flight for my RV 7 occurred Sat. Nov. 23, 2013 on a near perfect day. The first photo shows Larry Beck making the first flight and the second photo is after my first flight and as you can see the landing gear is still in reasonably good condition. The aircraft has a Lycoming IO 360 M1B engine with a constant speed prop. Avionics include an Advanced Flight Systems 5600 efis, AFS Pilot AP, GNC 255 nav/com, Garmin 327 transponder, Gemini ADI backup efis, Garmin poor man's 496 GPS, and backup altimeter and airspeed gages. The interior is from Oregon Classic Aero and includes 5 point Hooker Harnesses. At
23 squared the plane fl 180 mph TAS at 3000 Ft. and is very stable.

This is a dream come true after 2 1/2 years of work. Special thanks to Larry Beck who helped immensely with firewall forward work as well as final inspection and first flight, my friend Colonel Ken Daggett who volunteered whenever I needed an extra pair of eyes and hands, John VanBladeren with electrical, and finally, thanks to Norm Durrell who sold me his project and set the bar with his meticulous work on the wings.


          Dave Edtl
         [ djedtl at ]


Subject: RV-7 #72201 first flight
From: Andy
Date sent: Fri, 6 Dec 2013

Proud to report N117TR slipped the surly bonds today after 8 years and 11 months!

Thank you for the great kit and support and the Van's family that has helped me through the build. Solid performer, O-360 and Catto prop was showing 160 Kts without wheelpants and fairings! Slight heavy left wing to figure out and hours of grinning to come!


          [ crabandy at ]


From: Chris
Subject: Another one for the Hobbs!
Date sent: Sun, 8 Dec 2013

RV9-A C-GXNV took to the skies Dec. 11. Kit # 90830.


          Thanks Vans!
          Chris F
          [ fconsult at ]


Date sent: Sun, 8 Dec 2013
Subject: First Flight
From: Tom Odehnal

My wife Sandy and I, placed our order for our first kit at Oshkosh; kit # 120119. You can see the RV grin in the first picture, which was taken on the day that we placed the order.

The plan was to use some of our spare time that came with retirement, build in compliance with the new EAB rules, and not to set any completion deadlines. As a result, we have enjoyed almost 1300 hours of pleasure and satisfaction, and ended up with a wonderful airplane. We installed the latest Skyview panel, with autopilot, lighting, full interior, and a few extra bells and whistles, that brought our empty weight up to 770 lbs. First flight was on Nov. 21, 2013.

One night, I stayed up until midnight, just to reserve a phonetically simple N number that was coming available: N123M We are extremely pleased with the appearance. comfort, and handling characteristics of the airplane. Thank's Van for a fantastic design. It easily meets your performance specifications, and is now named “Lil Coupe”

We did all of the build ourselves, with great support from Van’s staff, lots of guidance and encouragement from other builders, including those who regularly read, and post to the Van’s Air force forum. Also, being novices at building, we found that the Sports Aviation articles, as well as the EAA videos, both called “Hints for Homebuilders”provided a myriad of valuable information. Thanks EAA. Now, lets go fly!


           Tom Odehnal,
           EAA 46187
           Pirates Cove Airport (42KY) on Kentucky Lake
           [ tomscub at ]


Subject: Hobbs meter addition
Date sent: Sun, 8 Dec 2013


Please be advised that your Hobbs meter has to be increased by one. My RV-9 (C-GUXQ) was officially recognized by Transport Canada about month ago.

Thanks for all your guidance and support. The trials and tribulations were many but definitely well rewarded.

Carl Forman
[ forman.c at ]


Subject: First Flight #120043
From: Scott
Date sent: Sun, 8 Dec 2013

Hello Van's!

I flew N728SL for the 1st time today after 5 years of construction, off and on, and lots of enjoyment. I would guess total hours in the 1400 range due to a less than quick pace, not to mention the addition of options that each took a bit of time. I'm very pleased with the result and I'm thankful for Van's for a great product and a strong support team.

I'm also thankful to the forum and guys like Scott M, Marty, Joe, Tony, Bill and John, to mention a few. Many challenges were met by visiting this forum and reading what others have done.

The first flight was exciting, albeit uneventful. I had not flown for years and the 12 hours spent flying with Mike Seager in the factory N412RV to bring my skills up to par and transition from a Cessna/Piper background was a life-saver. Thanks Mike!

N728SL statistics:
Empty weight = 754
Wheel pants
Lighting Kit
Full Interior
Auto Pilot/Servos
Skyview with conversion harness

First flight involved 3 circuits of my home airport (Twin Oaks Airpark 7S3) with 3 takeoffs and landings. Next weekend I'll start with the flight test cards and progress from there. 

What a great feeling to complete a life-long goal of building and flying my own airplane!


Scott Lane
Hillsboro, OR
[ srlane9 at ]


From: Bob Alexander
Date sent: Thu, 5 Dec 2013
Subject: First Flight!

On May 10, 2013 I made my first flight in my completed RV-7. After a decade of building kit number 70263 it was finally time to experience the joy of flying this marvelous kit from Van’s Aircraft, and it did not disappoint! The plane flew perfectly and I have now completed the testing phase flying out of the Tacoma Narrows airport in Gig Harbor, WA.

My RV-7 includes an IO-360 engine from AeroSport, Hartzell blended airfoil prop, Classic Aero interior, Lightspeed electronic ignition, TruTrak Digiflight autopilot, Advanced Flight System sport AOA, and a beautiful paint job by Dan & Linda Mauer of Red Bluff, CA.

Thanks to EAA tech/flight advisors Marv Scott and Terry Burch and to Van's for a fantastic design and support!


           Bob Alexander
           Fox Island, Washington
          [ rkalex123 at ]


From: Eugene Genereux
Subject: First Flight C-FEGT
Date sent: Wed, 4 Dec 2013

Kit Number 73862 had its first flight on Nov.26 2013 after 2 years 9 months of fun building. (I want to build another one)

It has a Dynon skyview and a Garmin 696 powered by a Lycoming 0-320 160 horse fixed pitch prop. I would like to thank my wife for her patience and Bob for being my riveting partner, Darin, Ed, Mike and all my airport friends for support.


          Eugene Genereux
          [ ercoupegene at ]


From: Ray Sievers
Date sent: Tue, 3 Dec 2013
Subject: Builder 91219


Attached photo is the DAR holding my airworthiness certificate last week. First flight followed shortly.

Thank you for your help the past 9 years, it is most appreciated and hello to Daryl, he gave myself and my wife a ride in S/N # 2 RV-9A in September.


          Ray Sievers
          Kenosha WI (ENW)
          [ Sieversg3 at ]


From: Jim Deas
Date sent: Tue, 3 Dec 2013
Subject: First Flight

November 24th RV-7 N314SY takes to the sky!
IO-360 (mid time)
MT 3-blade
O2 system
CANaero based electrical and trim system
1080 lbs!

It took almost 7 years balancing family, job, and school to get to this stage. A direct climb to 5k for 20 minutes of reading gauges and testing slow flight found only a slight heavy left wing and the prop a bit too fine pitched. Back down into the pattern for a ~good~ landing (gota work on those tail wheel chops!)

Back on the ground post inspection found some minor oil leaks on the mid-time engine and one weeping rivet on the fuel tank.

It was only after the plane left for the airport that I realized what an impact building has on your home life. Thankfully I have a wonder wife and kids that supported the project throughout. In addition the sweat equity of a fellow builder (Thanks Steve W!) was invaluable source of not just labor but as a second voice when evaluating the days work..


         J Deas
        [ James.Deas at ]


Thanks for the e-mails.

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