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Old 09-16-2020, 01:00 PM
Jradtke86 Jradtke86 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Elm Grove
Posts: 6
Default Purchase Advice

Hello VAF,

I'm a B-52 pilot out of Shreveport, LA and long time RV fan looking to cross into the owner world. I first experienced the RV grin in 2011 with an orientation flight out of the Aurora factory with their RV-8A. I've wanted to build, but military life has prevented that kind of commitment (hopefully that changes in retirement). After years of lurking the VAF forums, visiting RV builders and saving... I'm now in a position to buy. I've narrowed my WTB to a RV-8 with at least 200HP, but the best price on what I've been searching for is in Europe. Does anyone have any experience purchasing from overseas? I'm not opposed to an aircraft from the US. Logistically I'd prefer it, but the prices are options are limited in the US (probably because they don't stayin the market long). Any advice or connections is appreciated. Looking forward to joining the community I've been envious for a decade!



-Rolex (for the mil types in the crowd)
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Old 09-16-2020, 01:32 PM
Carl Froehlich's Avatar
Carl Froehlich Carl Froehlich is offline
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Dogwood Airpark (VA42)
Posts: 2,824

My advice - open your aperture to include the 180HP IO-360 and a standard Hartzell CS prop. Unless you are into time to climb competition I offer this is a superb combination (and what I used building an 8A and an 8).

Perhaps this will add more options to the US offerings. And, if you find one buy it fast.


Last edited by Carl Froehlich : 09-16-2020 at 04:35 PM.
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Old 09-16-2020, 02:09 PM
74-07 74-07 is offline
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Greenville, SC
Posts: 543
Default RV-8


My son and I (both ex-Air Force pilots) have owned three RVs (one RV-8/180 hp/FP, one RV-7/190 hp/CS and now a RV-8, 200 hp/CS. All are delightful.

We purchased the first RV-8 (180 hp, FP) out of Canada. It's a little more work going across the U.S./Canada border but it's doable. The Canadian airplanes are pretty much built and equipped just like those in the U.S.. We sold that airplane to a some guys in Germany. Not sure I'd be willing to go across the pond to get one. European regs required them to make several expensive changes (radios with different spacing for one) so, chances are good you'd have changes to make bringing one here. Pre-purchase inspection would be difficult. Shipping would be expensive and require disassembly and reassembly.

While we love our current 200 hp RV-8, we would have bought a 180 hp just as well if the right one had come around when we were looking. I agree completely with Carl.
Good luck on your search

74-07 Moody AFB
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Old 09-16-2020, 02:31 PM
Ed_Wischmeyer's Avatar
Ed_Wischmeyer Ed_Wischmeyer is offline
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Savannah, GA
Posts: 1,380

The best advice you can get on importing will be from EAA or AOPA or both... Probably no problem licensing an import as Experimental, Exhibition but maybe some hoops to jump through for Experimental, Amateur Built.

RV-9A at KSAV (Savannah, GA; dual G3X Touch with autopilot, GTN650, GTX330ES, GDL52 ADSB-In)
Previously RV-4, RV-8, RV-8A, AirCam, Cessna 175
ATP CFII PhD, so I have no excuses when I screw up
Too many safety posts purged without notice...
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Old 09-16-2020, 03:52 PM
MGR1977 MGR1977 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2020
Location: Seattle
Posts: 30
Default Imported from South Africa


I recently imported my RV-7 from South Africa. Disassembled myself and reassembled myself with some help from the local EAA chapter. Professionally, I was also in the international shipping/trading game, so I know the drill pretty well. Let me know if you need advice / assistance. It could definitely be worth your while if the price difference justifies.

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Old 09-16-2020, 04:31 PM
rv6n6r's Avatar
rv6n6r rv6n6r is offline
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Gearhart Oregon
Posts: 297

Originally Posted by Carl Froehlich View Post
My advice - open your aperture to include the 180HP IO-360 and a standard Hartzell CS prop.
+1 on that. We all understandably have a desire for more power but those extra 20 horses add around 50 lbs up front which can affect how nimble it is. I'm an RV-6 driver so I can't speak directly about the -8 but I have flown light and heavy -6s, and you can definitely tell the difference in aerobatics and the like. And with the 180/CS combo these things still go like stink.
Randall Henderson
RV-6 / O-360 / CS, 1500+ hrs, 1st flight Sept. 1999
Outstanding Workmanship OSH 2000
Airport committee chair & ASNV for Seaside, OR Municipal (56S),
Donated August 2020
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Old 09-16-2020, 07:18 PM
Norman CYYJ Norman CYYJ is offline
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Victoria B.C.
Posts: 1,280

Bunch of short hops. You could fly the RV8, it has the range, is it IFR equipped.
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Old 09-16-2020, 07:42 PM
Kyle Boatright Kyle Boatright is offline
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 4,372

If I was looking, I would be looking for an airplane with the 180 HP parallel valve engine rather than the 200 hp angle valve. The cylinders and overhaul costs on the 180 hp engine are far lower and the 180 hp engines (anecdotally at least) seem to have fewer expensive problems. As Randall pointed out, the weight is a factor too.
Kyle Boatright
Marietta, GA
2001 RV-6 N46KB
2019(?) RV-10
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Old 09-16-2020, 07:45 PM
SMRacer's Avatar
SMRacer SMRacer is offline
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Leesburg, VA
Posts: 584
Default Don't handcuff yourself

If you put overly restrictive criteria on options with regard to purchase of an RV8, you'll likely never find one.

First, 180 HP is plenty. You won't be disappointed.
Second, well, there is no second.

I'm planning to convert my O-360, 180HP RV8 to fuel injection and inverted oil. The RV8 wasn't exactly what I wanted when I purchased it, but I knew I could make it almost exactly what I originally desired.

The RV7 and RV8 market is very tight and prices are escalating. Don't accept poor workmanship, but almost everything else is surmountable.
Leesburg, VA (KJYO)
RV4 N444JT (sold)
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Old 09-16-2020, 10:51 PM
Jradtke86 Jradtke86 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Elm Grove
Posts: 6

If the right 180HP was avaliable I'd probably purchase the aircraft. I didn't want the thread hung up on that detail. As a matter of fact, there aren't many RV-8s on the market. Period.

Rob you're living my dream!

The workmanship is always a concern of mine, with homebuilds. I'll have to build trust in the person performing the purchase inspection.

I understand the tradeoffs in performance vs control... I fly a jet that doesn't usually have performance issues with 8 engines The extra margin of performance is worth the trade off for vertical obstruction, high DA, formation, ect...

Plane is IFR. I'm patient enough to wait for VFR if required. More concerned with traveling the North Atlantic approaching winter with COVID travel restrictions than the actual flying.

I didn't think about the EAA and licensing help, let alone equip differences, thank you for that! Martin I'll text you with some questions once I gather some more info.

Feel free to keep chiming in or DM me. I've never owned before so I'll take any advice on hanger space, insurance, financing upgrades/mx, networking, ect


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