Building an RV-10
The RV-10 is the latest addition to the family of metal aircraft from
It is a four seater and our
family needs that many seats. The reason for an
aircraft is to be able to travel from Switzerland to Sweden in an easier and
more pleasant way than by car today.
Different from other aircraft is that you have to build it yourself!
This means an undertaking of several years. Fortunately I am not alone.
Experimental Associacion of Switzerland
(EAS), the counterpart to the US EAA or
the English PFA or even the
Swedish EAA, helps (?) through the process.
Suddenly you have to start to decide on a lot of things you didn't have
to during the early stages of the build. You just took your plans, tried
to locate the parts and processed them according to the innstructions.
Suddenly there are on plans, no parts and no instructions anymore. How
shall your panel and cockpit be, how will your interior look? All these
decisions take time. You can look at some of ther decisions under
On the right you can see two enthusiasts!
Since my last update I have been able to work about 110 hours. The
doors are done (except windows). And the
landing gear is on.
The engine has been approved and is ordered. It is expected to arrive
in February 08. It will be a BPA IO540-X. That's a Lycoming IO-540
Engine with 260 HP - the standard engine for the RV-10.
On the left you see I made my first landing. Apropos landing: I
had my first solo flight last week ( didn't I tell you I could not
even fly ?)
As updating the web site is lowest priority, I have three month to report. Well, as
summer holidays was on the agenda, only two month were productive. Most important
was the arrival of the finishing kit as well as firewall forward kit.
After having done inventory, I could finish off several fuselage chapters that had
been stalled due to a missing nutplate! After that I've been busy with the
- the first chapter in the 'finishing kit'.
Unfortunately I am not able to keep up with monthly updates. In the last
couple of month the another obligation have entered my life - the youth
group of our local church. Therefore I have to apply a strict time
management - and Web updates are not top priority.
Nonetheless there has been progress. The different systems in the
cockpit heve been installed - at leas as far as I can do it by now. I am
missing some parts that either weren't shipped, were damaged by me or
lost. They are reordered.
I treated the Firewall with a kind of paint
for sound proofing and insulation. It's called Noxudol 3100.
I also try to do alot of small items that have been left over. On of
these was the Service Bulletin for the Vertical Stabilizer doubler
I visited the Aero Friedrichshafen where I got to meet
Michael Wellenzohn (the other
Swiss RV-10 builder) for the first time, as well as alot of the
participants of the German Forum.
The finishing kit together with the firewall forward kit will arrive
next month; see you then...
1210 hours and still counting...
- They say that you are middle through the build process when you
order the so called Finishing Kit. And that's what I've done... so it
will take me 2420 hours to finish ;-)
- I have almost no metal parts to treat any more...
- I'm waiting for the stuff to insulate my firewall and before that
I can't install any systems near the firewall...
- I've started to develop my electrical system...
- I've started the interior cockpit design...
As long as my tail cone is in place, I want to do all work that seems to
be necessary with the tail cone on. I will then remove the tailcone to
get more space again...
Trimming the cabin cover is one of these tasks
- you can read more about it here.
Happy New Year!
At the end of a year it's tine to draw the balance. Two years of
building and 1100 hours done. OK. OK I exaggerated again, it was only
1099.75h. But I must say that I am very satisfied with this result.I had
hoped for 400h/year.
The engine situation is still fuzzy, mainly because the regulations
here in Switzerland are uncertain at the moment.
On the right you see the first check of the back seat.
I am reaching the end of Chapter 29 - a chapter
that has a mediocre reputation. There are ommisions in the documentation
and things that cou can skrew up easily if you are not aware of it.
Until now I have been lucky and kept damage to a minimum.
I also started and finished Chapter 30, and even started
Chapter 31 - the panel chapter. That's where the fun starts ( ok, ok, it has started
two years ago) when it starts looking like an airplane.
Two months since the last update... has he quit?
No! In these two month I have:
- finished the Flaps
- finished the Wingtips
- finished Fwd. Fuse Ribs & Skins
- started Fuse Side Skins
- Reached the 1000 hour mark! Image on the right shows what I was
doing (drilling the longerons).
- Started taking flying lessons. What? You build an aircraft without
beeing able to fly? Are you crazy? Well I am even crazier than that, I
- bought an engine on EBay. But more when I know more...
But apart from all this, I feel fine!
I am back again!
There has been a lot of activity apart of building:
Fly'Ins at Tannkosh (more than 1000 aircrafts!), Höganäs (24 RV's, super
weather, great people!) and EAS in Ecuvillens.
Milestone was a leak free second tank, but
also the completion of the Mid Fuse Ribs&Skins
Chapter. Yvar (my build advisor) was also satisfied with flaps and
German speaking people should take note that there
is a new RV forum: see the right column.
First chapter (Mid Fuse Bulkheads) of the fuselage completed, Wings
Outboard Leading Edges completed - almost 48 hours this month - above
the average of 41 hours .-) I also started Mid Fuse Ribs&Skins and the
Summer has arrived (finally) so the progress will certainly slow down.
But it woud be fun to see some of you at the different Fly-In's this
year. I'll be visiting the one's in the right column on this page. See
I was right with my prediction of the progress this month. With 72
hours it was the most productive month so far. OK, I need to clarify
things: Building progress was infact only the half; th other half was
building a wing stand, fetching my fuselage kit (!), uncrating,
inventoring, get everything ordered etc.
But now I am back to building - more to come next month!
Believe it or not, I am at the point where I am running out of work.
Much of the wings are unfinished either because it must be inspected or
because I need parts from Van's, which should be delivered together with
the fuselage. And that one will not show up either. In my frustration I
started cleaning my shop so I can welcome my fuselage accordingly.
this was not much news. But stay tuned, next month will be full of
progress (I hope)!
To justify to start the fuselage next month I had to start all chapters to the wing before, which I
managed by adding half an hour on the wing tips! I have installed a build time page for all those who
would like to see how long it takes. But bear in mind that build time varies alot between builders.
I also updated the Tanks page and added
Bottom Skins and Aileron Actuation.
With only 33.25 hours added to the project this month progress has
slowed down a little. Nontheless it was the month of the helping hands.
Max, a friend from our new congregation, was willing to make the
encounter with the 'Sticky Stuff' aka. Proseal more enjoyable. Besides
Max my godson Simon and my daughter helped me. Pictures of them on the
I also made the decision to
continue with this project and so I ordered the Fuselage kit. More on
this in two month hopefully .
January was a month of remarkable progress. Completion of the Leading
Edge, the Top Skins, the Ailerons and almost the Flaps too. Completion
means of course 'Ready for Inspection'. I added 66.75h to the hobbs
meter this month.
This was the month of the milestones. You have certainly wondered what
you do at the 500 hour building mark? Well, on the right you see that
deburring the outboard leading edge
skins of the wings is that special task.
We also celebrated the first
anniversary of this crazy project, and the top
wing skins are completed (almost, almost!)
02.12.2005 First Flight!
After the first building crisis we have to announce a major milestone:
First Flight. At least for the tailcone. It is now hanging between
heaven ans earth in my shop. It is even perfoming aerobatics with
The major setback were bad rivets between
the main spar and the ribs. The Wing Rib
Page tells you more.
The second setback was the
fiberglass work on the empennage. Ir didn't work out well (the elevators
didn't move reely any more), so I had to redo it.
Well, I promised you two skeleton wings this month - and here they are!
It took me 77 hours to build both wings to this state. I also screwed up
my tie down brackets and have to reorder them from Van's. On that order
there will also be all the additional stuff I need for the fuel tanks.
||This is more or less a lifesign from me, as there is no real visible
progress this month. The reasons:
- Flood: The picture on the left is not New Orleans, but the lido 100 meters from our home. We were very lucky - 5 cm higher water and our basement had got flooded too!
- Preparation Work: 30 ribs are now waiting to be primed, along with two rear spars and a whole bunch of other parts. The next priming session will be the biggest so far. I hope I can show you two skeleton wings next month. Stay tuned...
Now for the first time you can really see that an aircraft is evolving in
my shop - a fact that several friends, relatives and neighbours have
expressed with admiration and horror in their voice.
June was the month of the milestones. After Yvar's visit I finished the
Horizontal Stabilizer on June 04, the
Elevators on June 06 and the
Tailcone on June 29.
Besides that there was a great RV Flyin in Colmar that I visited on
Saturday 11 with the whole family. On the left you see Rahel trying out
Roger Hopkinson's RV-6.
Roger is the man who is pushing the 'Ten' in the UK.
The task until summer holidays will be to put all empennage pieces
together. The it will start looking like an airplane - at least like the
tail. Stay tuned...!
I had my builder advisor - Yvar Vonlanthen - on a visit yesterday. He examined the
Horizontal Stabilizer, the
Elevators and also the main wing
spars. This month I will surely finish these parts and eventually also the
tailcone (but no promises!). With 238 hours on the Empennage, I hope to
finish it at a little over 300 hours.
have now reached 200 building hours. Mostly it has been a very fun
experience. I like it very much to come home from my job and build for an hour.
Thereby I get a distance to my daily job that otherwise has the tendency to
eat me up.
Building a metal airplane is also very convenient. It is not very dirty,
it doesen't smell, you can do something meaningful in five minutes. The only
thing that I am not very fond of is the priming. Here I feen not very
competent yet. I am going to change my primer, maybe I will like the new one
And yes, of course
are for entertainment purposes only!
Among all different Electronic Flight Instrument
Systems (EFIS) popping up like mushrooms, the
Stratomaster Odyssey brings a new concept with new thinking in this market.
It is not only the cheapest system, but also the most
VANS RV FLY-IN
VANS RV FLY-IN
|European Builders unite
Building an aircraft in Europe is not as easy as in other parts of the
world. We have to fight with harder regulations. Therefore we have to help
each other! If you are building, or plan to build an RV-10 in an European country,
please leave a message through the Contact-Page.