Bruce's Brain
Thoughts I have Thought

Building an airplane in a garage

May 20, 2008 20:50 by brucelan

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is actually a post from last November that I brought over when I moved to my new blogging engine.  I have since flown about 80 hours in the airplane and worked out all the (minor) issues.


I flew my new airplane for the first time yesterday.  It is an experimental airplane which simply means that it was not certified by the FAA like a Cessna or a Piper.  It is called a Van's RV-10.  This one was built by a guy near Huntsville, AL.  I have to admit that he did a better job building it that I could have.   For years, I have jokingly commented to Penny that I needed a bigger, faster airplane.  I was actually pretty happy with the one that I had.  It was fast, aerobatic and just plain fun to fly.  The only downside to it was that it only had enough room for two people.   Anyway, Penny would always roll her eyes and snicker when I talked about a bigger airplane.   Unexpectedly, sometime in June when I made my usual comment she actually agreed with me.  Her exact words were "it would be nice if we had a plane that could carry more people and things".  I immediately decided to act before she sobered mean changed her mind.


So anyway I put my RV-8 up for sale and sold it in mid September to Charlie Plunkett in South Carolina.  Then I needed to find a new airplane...


Here is what I bought:


19sept07 002

I know it didn't look like an airplane at that point (no wings, propeller, or windshield).    The guy who was building it assured me that he would have it finished within two months.  He actually finished it is seven weeks.  Here is what it looked like as of the 7th of November:


7nov07 006

And here is roughly what it will look like when it comes out of the paint shop in December:


Note: This is not my airplane but it is the same model and I am basically having the painter copy this paint job.

Anyway, I flew it yesterday and am very pleased with how it flies.  It is fast for a light plane (roughly 155 kts in cruise) and can carry quite a bit of people and baggage.  I have not flown it in IFR (instrument) conditions yet, but other people who have flown the RV-10 say it is a very good airplane in turbulence and yechy weather.

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