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About RV Kit Hinges

Often times we receive an inquiry as to the identification of the hinge materials supplied in Van’s Aircraft kits. The following discussion should help.

Hinges are identified with three (3) basic dimensions:


LENGTH: this is the overall length of the supplied hinge.

  • HINGE PIANO 1/8X6’ has a length of 6 feet (6’).

PIN DIAMETER: this is the diameter of the round pin that is inserted between the two halves of the hinge and holds it together: Example part numbers:

  • HINGE PIANO 063 has a PIN diameter of 1/16” (nominal .063”).
  • HINGE PIANO 1/8 has a PIN diameter of 1/8” (nominal .125”).
  • AN257-P(X) or MS20257-(X) has a PIN diameter of 3/32” (nominal .094”).

HINGE WIDTH: this dimension is only applicable to the clear anodized aircraft quality hinges supplied that have the following sample part number identification: AN257-P3 (marked: MS20257-3): in this case the –P3 (-3) indicates the flange width as measured from one side to the other if the hinge is simply placed opened up on a flat table. The following dimensions are typical:

  • P2 (-2) width is: 1 1/16”
  • P3 (-3) width is: 1 ¼”
  • P4 (-4) width is: 1 ½”
  • P5 (-5) width is: 2”


  • All HINGE PIANO 1/8 is supplied with an aluminum hinge pin that is to be removed and discarded. For each length of HINGE PIANO 1/8 supplied in a Van’s kit, you will receive an equivalent length of 1/8” stainless steel pin to replace the discarded aluminum pin.
  • All HINGE PIANO 063 is supplied with a stainless steel pin of diameter 1/16” (nominal .063”) no replacement is necessary.
  • All AN (MS) hinges will have a stainless steel pin with a diameter of 3/32” (nominal .094”) no replacement is necessary.
  • All AN (MS) hinges sold by Van’s Aircraft have the same eyelet width. It is possible to interchange and mix them. For example: If the pin is removed from a length of AN257-P3 and from a length of AN257-P5, the two can be reassembled mixed as half of each since the eyelets of the two are identical.

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