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View Poll Results: Did you fly the maiden flight of your build?
Yes 214 85.94%
No 35 14.06%
Voters: 249. You may not vote on this poll

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  #21  
Old 02-02-2021, 04:44 PM
Don Patrick's Avatar
Don Patrick Don Patrick is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: GTA, Ontario
Posts: 854
Default Yupper

Sure did. After 8 years and 8 months of building, I took my 8 on its maiden flight on Dec 30th, 2018...what a thrill!

https://www.vansaircraft.com/first-f...patricks-rv-8/

Iíve got over 170 flight hours on it now. Miss the build, but love flying it.

Been toying with selling it and building another....

Keep pounding!


Don
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  #22  
Old 02-02-2021, 04:51 PM
dreed dreed is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Camas, WA
Posts: 454
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I've not flown yet, but am very close. Already decided to have someone else to it for me (no shame). Mike Seager is going to do my initial flight or two and then I'll go up with him for some familiarization flights.

Can't think of anyone better to do a test flight in an RV and it's been a 3-4- months since I did my transition time with him so I am sure I am RV rusty already.
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Dan Reed
Camas, WA
RV-7A - N167DR (reserved)
Inspection coming
2018/19/20 VAF dues paid
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  #23  
Old 02-02-2021, 04:56 PM
DanH's Avatar
DanH DanH is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: 08A
Posts: 9,876
Default

Work the odds. This is not a time for emotion. If there is a readily available pilot with more experience in type, let them do it.

So far, I've had someone else fly two, and I flew two. My first flight in the former pair was just as much fun as the second pair.
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Dan Horton
RV-8 SS
Barrett IO-390
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  #24  
Old 02-02-2021, 05:19 PM
wirejock's Avatar
wirejock wirejock is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Estes Park, CO
Posts: 4,299
Default Test pilot

Quote:
Originally Posted by dreed View Post
I've not flown yet, but am very close. Already decided to have someone else to it for me (no shame). Mike Seager is going to do my initial flight or two and then I'll go up with him for some familiarization flights.

Can't think of anyone better to do a test flight in an RV and it's been a 3-4- months since I did my transition time with him so I am sure I am RV rusty already.
I'm planning to hire a Test Pilot. Nice to know Mike does it. I may look him up when the time comes.
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Larry Larson
Estes Park, CO
http://wirejockrv7a.blogspot.com
wirejock at yahoo dot com
Donated 01/01/2021, plus a little extra.
RV-7A #73391, N511RV reserved (2,000+ hours)
HS SB, empennage, tanks, wings, fuse, working finishing kit
Disclaimer
I cannot be, nor will I be, held responsible if you try to do the same things I do and it does not work and/or causes you loss, injury, or even death in the process.
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  #25  
Old 02-02-2021, 05:46 PM
wilddog wilddog is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: va.
Posts: 617
Default

I flew my -8ís first flight and would not have missed it for anything. Made the best landing so far! It was the only RV-8 Iíve flown but I was current in my now sold RV-3. Also flew first flight of a Hatz biplane I built years ago. I donít think I would build a plane with the intention of somebody else testing it. It is my responsibility and my thrill.
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  #26  
Old 02-02-2021, 06:06 PM
Canadian_JOY Canadian_JOY is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,388
Default

I did the first flight in my aircraft. I'll commit heresy here by saying it was also my very first flight in the type, my very first time moving the airplane under its own power, but a long way from my first rodeo.

Throughout the build I remained current in my other airplane, one which is far more demanding of the pilot. I was lucky enough to get a few minutes of stick time in the smaller/older version of my aircraft so I had some vague idea of how the airplane should handle.

Of course it was a brand new airplane, brand new prop, brand new avionics, but all fairly well proven equipment. It took 10 ground runs to get the engine/prop dialed in so I was very comfortable with the engine, prop and their operation and instrumentation.

So all of the above sounds pretty conceited and maybe a bit dumb. But I had a plan... I availed myself of the services of an experienced flight instructor who would ride in the right seat with me for the first flight or two. He has a good deal of experience in certified airplanes and is a homebuilder himself. He also took on the role of safety backstop, checking all of the criteria that went into the go/nogo decision, making sure we had briefed as many scenarios as we could.

Then I chair-flew the first flight so many times and inserted the failure scenarios into those chair-flights, closing my eyes and manipulating controls by feel, building muscle memory, building smoothness and building a sense of cockpit routine.

The first flight was conducted 17 December, 2017 and was flawless. We circled the airport in a big racetrack pattern, staying within gliding distance. After about 1.2 hours we made a normal approach, terminating the flight in a pretty decent landing. No squawks were noted in that first flight.

What have I learned from this experience?
1) having a very experienced pilot to act as your safety backstop is an excellent idea
2) having a very experienced pilot along with you drastically reduces the stress level of the first flight
3) going it alone leaves one open to biases and other influences which could be very detrimental to safe operations

I'm very happy with the way the first flight turned out and suffer no deflation of my ego from having shared that flight experience with another pilot. In fact his presence made the entire experience better, from pre-flight planning to post-flight celebration.
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  #27  
Old 02-02-2021, 06:44 PM
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Ironflight Ironflight is offline
VAF Moderator / Line Boy
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Dayton, NV
Posts: 12,540
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It was mentioned in one other post above, but let me reinforce it - the EAA has the Flight Advisor program to help you answer this EXACT question. The decision you make shouldn’t be based on what anyone (or everyone) else does - it should be based on talking one on one with an experienced flight advisor who can help lead you to a safe first flight - whether it by at your hand, or someone else’s.

Flight Advisors are free (just like Tech Counselors), and you can find them on the EAA web site. If they think that you might have some deficiencies in your approach to a first flight, they can help you decide what needs to be done to have it go the way you like.

Take the emotion out of it, do some objective, rational analysis, and make the risk to you and your plan as low as possible.

Paul
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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)
http://Ironflight.com
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  #28  
Old 02-02-2021, 07:27 PM
9GT's Avatar
9GT 9GT is online now
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Southern Michigan
Posts: 2,099
Default

My RV-10 was my very first maiden flight. It was without doubt the most emotionally fulfilling thing I ever did in my life. This is in no way a recommendation for others though, just my personal experience.
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David C.
Howell, MI
RV-10: #41686 Under Construction
RV-9A: #90949 Under Construction
RV-10: #40637 Completed/Sold 2016
Cozy MKIV:#656 Completed/Sold 2007
"Donor Exempt" but donated through Dec. 2021
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  #29  
Old 02-02-2021, 08:07 PM
jpowell13 jpowell13 is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Baton Rouge, LA
Posts: 685
Default

I did my own first flight after some excellent transition training from Mike Seager in Ol' Blue, a 6A that is very similar to mine. I really wanted to do the first flight and had no kids or dependents. I am secure in the knowledge that the next life will be better for me than this one (which has been very good). And, if something did go wrong, as a result of a construction error on my part, it seemed right that I be at the controls. These were the most important considerations for me, but there are many times that an experienced test pilot should make the first flight. If your gut says "no" then don't go. It's also important to realize that problems can remain hidden until a later flight. John
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  #30  
Old 02-02-2021, 08:25 PM
Mel's Avatar
Mel Mel is online now
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Dallas area
Posts: 10,974
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironflight View Post
Flight Advisors are free (just like Tech Counselors), and you can find them on the EAA web site. If they think that you might have some deficiencies in your approach to a first flight, they can help you decide what needs to be done to have it go the way you like.
Take the emotion out of it, do some objective, rational analysis, and make the risk to you and your plan as low as possible.
Paul
And many on this website!
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Mel Asberry, DAR since the last century. Over 1,000 certifications accomplished.
EAA Flight Advisor/Tech Counselor, Friend of the RV-1
Recipient of Tony Bingelis Award and Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award
USAF Vet, High School E-LSA Project Mentor.
RV-6 Flying since 1993 (sold)
<rvmel(at)icloud.com>
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