5th Apr 2006, 14:43
Not to hijack any of the threads running but the recent Lancair tragedies have solidified a few thoughts.
After learning to fly in the forces I have spent the last 25 years flying heavy jets and as the end approaches I have taken to looking at what I might fiddle with in retirement to keep my hand in, escape the gardening and still enjoy the view. Homebuilt is where I have been looking.
The homebuilt fraternity in Australia is full of experience, commonsense and expertise which I have tapped in my research.
The one and abiding feeling I have from listening and doing some driving myself is that a lot of what is on the market doesn't have enough rudder to get you out of trouble if you push the envelope. The Lancair being the race horse of the fleet is probably ther best example of this.
I would be interested in what others think and have experienced. My tendency is toward the Van's RV 6 or 7 but would appreciate any input from those that have been there and done that.
5th Apr 2006, 14:48
Vans sound and look like a great product and best of all, the little wheel is in the proper place.
The Fantastic Plastic is still good stuff - I mean there is a guy I know who has so much faith in his (fast plastic homebuilt) that he regularly aerobats it over town :yuk:
Obviously, from my username, I'm biased, and more so than ever at the moment as my RV6 flew for the first time last Sunday. That aside - the Vans series has a very good safety record. Van modified the rudder of the RV6 in his later models to increase rudder authority - he does not recommend spinning the 6 more than 2 turns. The RV6 kit is no longer available new - though there are bound to be a few on the second hand market. You might be better looking at the 7 or 8, depending on your preference for side by side or tandem configuration.
Feel free to PM if you would like more info.
5th Apr 2006, 23:09
If you're looking for an aircraft in the 155+ knots range, you can't beat a VANS RV Series.
Only downside is up to 40lph fuel consumption to go that fast, and limitation of 2 seats. Unless you stretch for the RV10.
A few years back you'd get an RV6 for $90k'ish, but you're talking 120's to 130's now with a second life engine.
Big downside is that if you don't want to build it yourself, you're not going to be able to "tinker" with it in your retirement as you aren't the maintenance authority and you didn't build it yourself.
They are certainly great performers and from every trip I've been on with Sykfoxes, Jabirus and up to larger GA aircraft, the RV always pulls up with the best fuel consumption over the whole trip.
People I know have had successful International trips in their RV with great success. The RV6 is a great machine; short takeoff, nice landing roll, fast, economical aerobatic, reliable and a pleasure to fly. If I had the money I'd upgrade. I'm kicking myself I didn't buy one a few years ago; I could have almost made money, but because I didn't build it myself, it would have cost too much to run.
If you're serious, buy a quick-build kit or a half built project...
Just my 2 cents worth.
PS: DON'T, and I repeat DON'T spin your RV6. You WILL come unstuck if you are not an absolute ace; trust me! PM me for info.
18 foot pek pek
6th Apr 2006, 00:22
One of these mate party plus chicks.
Dont be a silly old geek with a TOY plane
6th Apr 2006, 02:01
Thanks for the advice. Met Mrs HFX on one of those many years ago so I am afraid it would have to be a single scull or a surf ski...:hmm:
6th Apr 2006, 02:36
HFX, it's a magic feeling to build an aircraft yourself and and even better one to get out of it after the first flight with that silly ear to ear grin!:O
My only experience in an RV was 30 mins in an RV4 (backseat), but I loved every minute-a real aeroplane and the closest thing to a 'military' feel of any homebuilt I've flown. Some Lancair time, very fast, much more scary into a shortish grass strip than the '4' and left me feeling that it was an aircaft I didn't want to push the envelope in, whereas the '4' seemed to be wasted in straight+level flight.:E. Horses for courses.