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FIrst FLights

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As of today, 11,276 RV aircraft have been completed and flown!

We learn of flying RVs in several different ways, and we can only add your RV to our counter if you let us know it’s flown! Ideally, a builder will use the form linked from this page to send us the story and a photo/video or two or three of his or her personal “RV grin.” Sometimes they call us on the phone, which is great but doesn’t actually provide us with anything to publish on the web. Other times we find out incidentally; for example when a customer calls to order new tires and we wonder why someone who is still building (as far as we know) would need them. Or, we may discover a first flight announcement on an RV web forum or other online venue. On yet other occasions, we learn of a new batch of flying RVs from “RV factories” overseas, but without the individual owner details.

We’d like to see more RV grins here, so please submit your first-flight story and pictures of your new “baby,” or we (and the rest of the world) may never know of your success! Click the “Submit Report” link on the right to do it!

First Flight Reports:

Stefan Bendl’s RV-14 | Donzdorf, Germany RV-14 #140863

Congratulations Stefan! 1043 days ago we got our first kit from Aurora. The following 2 years my wife Silke and me spend every free minute on building our RV-14. After we received the approval from the authorities, yesterday was the day to change our status from builder to pilot. Weather was perfect, only light winds. The […] Read More

Mark Gaboriault’s RV-7 | Prescott Valley, AZ RV-7 #70676

Congratulations to Mark on his new RV-7! He writes: After nineteen years of off and on building, first flight was in February 2020, finish paint August 2023. Subaru 3.0 six cylinder engine, mated to an Aerodrive gearbox and MT electric constant speed prop. Super smooth. What a blast to fly!

James Mark Stringfellow’s RV-10 | Lexington, KY RV-10 #40480

Nice work James! He shares: First flight, engine break in, it’s a smooth flying plane. No surprises, nice landing with 80lbs in the cargo hold. Building vs Flying? I have to go with FLYING! I learned several new skills, made some of my own custom tools, and spent $$$ on some cool new tools but […] Read More

Larry R. Nelson’s RV-9A | Rochester, MN RV-9A #91574

Congratulations Larry! He shares: First flight was 44 minutes on June 4 flown by pilot Tom Berge. Flew well except for high cht in my new Lycoming engine. In subsequent flight hours, cht has cooled. Fun to fly! No pictures yet as it is unpainted (will happen be painted in October). May send photos then. […] Read More

Dan Thompson’s RV-9A | Battle Ground, Washington RV-9A #90097

Congratulations Dan! He writes: The RV-9A took me 2.5 years to complete. I installed a Dynon HDX panel, IO-320-D1A and a constant speed Hartzell prop. This aircraft was originally purchased as a quick build in the Mid 2000’s by a gentleman named Dave and sat for years on center island in the San Juan’s untouched […] Read More

Ross Lavely’s RV-14 | Carson City, NV. (KCXP) RV-14 #140421

Congratulations to Ross on the completion of his stunning RV-14! He writes: I’m a little late getting out the first flight report. N658RV first flew May 18, 2021. The first flight went very smooth with only minor adjustments to get it to fly hands off. A few big shoutouts: The gang at Bend Builders Assist who helped […] Read More

Matt Ewoldt’s RV-7A | San Antonio, TX RV-7A #70900

Congratulations to Matt on the first flight of his RV-7A! Check out his wonderful first flight story: FF was amazing! A few squawks, all minor…one hour and 177 miles later (all over KCVB…my ball of yarn track), she landed perfectly. New YIO-360-EXP / Hartzell CS two blade / Dynon HDX / Avidyne IFD 440 / […] Read More

Dan Prill’s RV-7 | Sand Coulee, Montana RV-7 #71224

Congratulations to Dan on his new RV-7! Dan writes: After 18 years of off and on building the RV-7 – my son stepped up to the challenge and along with his friends completed the construction of N4677P. The plane was finished and issued an Airworthiness Certificate on June 14, 2023. The first flight was done […] Read More

Charles Randall’s RV-12 | San Angelo, TX RV-12iS #121488

Nice work Charles! He writes: 8/3/23: the most beautiful day ever. I flew my Van’s RV12iS, sn#121488 for the first time today. Thank you Van’s Aircraft for an excellent kit project. She flies just as advertised. Remarkable control and exciting to fly. I spent about 961 man hours over the past 12 months, mostly in […] Read More

David Weber’s RV-7 | Snohomish, WA RV-7 #73444

Check out David’s stunning new RV-7! He writes: There are few times in life where years of effort result in one defining moment – but making the first flight in an aircraft you built is one of those, and what a great moment it was. So much support from friends and family enabled the RV […] Read More

Dan Ruehl’s RV-14 | FORT MYERS, FL RV-14 #140662

Congratulations to Dan on the first flight of his RV-14! He writes: After retiring on the field at AirVenture 2018, I knew I wanted to build this airplane. I returned in 2019 and bought my first kit. I’ve enjoyed every minute of it..even my mistakes. I have lots of people to thank… Ken’s Balch’s group of […] Read More

Scott Burke’s RV-12iS | Kalispell, MT RV-12iS #121337

Congratulations to Scott on the completion of his RV-12iS! Got our airworthiness certificate on 6/21/23 and got a perfect day on 6/23/23 to take flight for the first time. Everything went great and flew exactly as expected – fantastic. Thanks to Van’s for a great kit, excellent instructions, and fantastic support!

Bob and Ben Gilbert’s RV-10 | Omaha, NE RV-10 #41934

Congratulations to Bob and Ben on their new RV-10! They write: After 4 1/2 years building, it’s difficult to describe the feeling when the wheels leave the ground for the first time. One giant puckering smile is all we could muster. Flight went as planned, orbit over the field, watch the engine temps, bring it […] Read More

Ben Barron’s RV-14A | Fall City, Washington RV-14A #141054

Congratulations to Ben on his new RV-14A! He writes: Thanks to the help of Darin, Harry, Randy, Jeff, Renato, Dave, Dynon, Van’s and my best friend and wife of 37 years Kathy N632KB was built in 20 months. The plane is absolutely amazing. It is a big step up from my first (and only) other […] Read More

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