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Old 02-19-2021, 05:00 PM
Derek343 Derek343 is offline
Join Date: Aug 2020
Location: Shreveport la
Posts: 22
Default Cabin Heat for RV-3

I'm flying my RV-3 in Colorado and it has been very cold. I want to put in some cabin heat. Has anyone done that and/or suggest how to do it.

I don't have any vents installed. It has an O-320 engine. The only vent is a pop out of the side of the canopy.

Looking on the vans site, it looks like I could do this:

Complete vent system for one seat with drawing and instructions

Flanged duct for penetrating bulkheads

VENT DL-05 2"

Stainless mounting plate/tube, shaft and selector door, w/2" dump tube

Heat selector control cable

SCAT tube 2" dia. x 3' long

Would this work?

It says
Box mounts on the engine side of the firewall and either routes warm air to the cockpit or dumps the warm air overboard. Air heated in the heat muff must continually flow to keep from overheating components and destroying items such as the muff or the scat tube. Requires control cable to select heat on/off.

What do you do to dump the hot air? Do you vent it out somewhere?
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Old 02-19-2021, 06:03 PM
Ironflight's Avatar
Ironflight Ironflight is offline
VAF Moderator / Line Boy
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Dayton, NV
Posts: 12,453

What you are describing is the basic cabin heater in all RV’s. The “unused heat” goes out the bottom of the cowl when the heater valve is closed.

In our RV-3, we added an electric seat heater as original equipment - it does much more to keep the pilot’s core temperature up than the standard cabin heater (which we also have installed).

Becasue of the bubble canopy, there are two “heat zones” in the airplane - above the sill and below the sill. In cold conditions, the cabin heat does fine with everything below the sill, but the upper body and head can get chilly - unless, of course, you’re in sunlight, which really makes you comfortable.
Paul F. Dye
Editor at Large - KITPLANES Magazine
RV-8 - N188PD - "Valkyrie"
RV-6 (By Marriage) - N164MS - "Mikey"
RV-3B - N13PL - "Tsamsiyu"
A&P, EAA Tech Counselor/Flight Advisor
Dayton Valley Airpark (A34)
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Old 02-19-2021, 08:27 PM
Larry DeCamp's Avatar
Larry DeCamp Larry DeCamp is offline
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Clinton, Indiana
Posts: 1,049
Default Leaks are a priority

As Paul says, the standard muff/ firewall valve puts heat in. My biggest source of cold air was the rear canopy to fuse seal and flap pushrod holes. Foam does a pretty good job on flap rod leaks. I cut a 1/4 craft foam board from hobby lobby to seal the seat bulkhead to the canopy. Just remove it for summer. And of course, stocking caps a good thing .
Larry DeCamp
RV-3B flying w/7:1 0320 / carb / Pmags / Catto 3b / digital steam
RV-4 fastback w/ Superior roller 360/AFP/G3X/CPI/Catto3b
Clinton, IN
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Old 02-19-2021, 08:48 PM
David Paule David Paule is offline
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 4,648

Where in Colorado?

RV-3B under construction in Boulder
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