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  #1  
Old 12-15-2015, 10:49 PM
nigelspeedy's Avatar
nigelspeedy nigelspeedy is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Tehachapi, CA
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Default How High?

Today I set out to find out how high my 8 would go. I did some level accel's from 2 to 18k to determine the climb performance and then came up with a climb schedule to do a ceiling climb. Taking off out of Mojave at 1600 lbs I used 120 KIAS to 10,000', 100 KIAS to 15,000', 90 KIAS to 20,000', 80 KIAS to 25,000', 75 KIAS to 27,000' then 70 KIAS which got me up to 28,000'.

Some observations. It's bloody cold up high. Aluminum is a great conductor of heat. Pens and iPhones don't work very well when cold. The RV-8 cabin heater is no match for -40C. The Dynon Skyview system stops reporting OAT below -32C.

The flight was spoiled by being passed as traffic to a jet climbing out of China Lake as "a very slow moving RV at 280". Granted 38 knots ground speed is a little on the slow side for an RV.

These planes really need a blower or turbo to increase the shabby high alt performance.


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Last edited by nigelspeedy : 12-15-2015 at 10:50 PM. Reason: addition of photo
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  #2  
Old 12-15-2015, 11:01 PM
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Location: Half Moon Bay, CA
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This is great! A very slow moving RV. Sounds like we need a turbine upgrade (and pressurized/heated cabins).

Or, as some wise aviator said, " fly near the middle of the air; stay away from the edges" You're too close with your bird. Icarus, you know.

(way too cool, BTW!!)
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  #3  
Old 12-15-2015, 11:02 PM
Robin8er Robin8er is offline
 
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I'm jelly That's very cool.
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  #4  
Old 12-15-2015, 11:03 PM
aerhed aerhed is offline
 
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Location: Big Sandy, WY
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Just another 1029 ft and you'll never have to worry about terrain again.
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  #5  
Old 12-15-2015, 11:08 PM
rockwoodrv9 rockwoodrv9 is offline
 
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Location: Meridian ID, Aspen CO, Okemos MI
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Wow, that is amazing.
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  #6  
Old 12-15-2015, 11:19 PM
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greghughespdx greghughespdx is offline
 
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Location: Aurora, OR
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Thats super cool. Inquiring minds want (need?) to know: How exactly does one successfully make the request of ATC to get cleared to do that, slow and in the flight levels? Block from surface to 30,000?

Also, I hope maybe you had heated seats at least. How long were you up there in that cold?
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Last edited by greghughespdx : 12-15-2015 at 11:29 PM.
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  #7  
Old 12-15-2015, 11:24 PM
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Very cool. What were the winds at altitude?
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  #8  
Old 12-15-2015, 11:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nigelspeedy View Post
T...The flight was spoiled by being passed as traffic to a jet climbing out of China Lake as "a very slow moving RV at 280". Granted 38 knots ground speed is a little on the slow side for an RV....
Thanks for the report on a very nice flight. Don't feel bad about the 38 knots. I made a flight in a Schweizer 1-26 at FL300 where my ground speed was in the range of + or - 20 knots. It was cold for me with the fabric and steel tube and aluminum but maybe not quite so bad since the lower speed limited heat transfer.
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  #9  
Old 12-15-2015, 11:31 PM
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Ironflight Ironflight is offline
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I think that's the highest I have ever heard or read about for a normally-aspirated two-seat RV. I've been to FL250, but as you said, it gets dang cold, and I started to worry about magneto arc trackign and other stuff not designed for that environment.

Nice envelope expansion!
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  #10  
Old 12-15-2015, 11:54 PM
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nigelspeedy nigelspeedy is offline
 
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Location: Tehachapi, CA
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Default Clearance how?

I work at NTPS and we have a good relationship with the controlling agency for the Isabella MOA and they routinely allow us to operate aircraft VFR up to 290 and above. So I just put myself on the flying schedule and flew to work and used a work call sign. I actually asked for 300 in a fit of optimism and they approved that once airborne. You could just file IFR though. Be prepared for a long climb, it took me 40 minutes to get from 2700' to 28000'. I spent about 5 minutes up there messing around with different mixture settings and airspeeds but the novelty wore off pretty quick. One of those things you do once to say you did, but I think 18000 is a more practical ceiling (the engine actually makes enough power that the heater works & you can use a cannula instead of a mask) unless there was a scorching tailwind that you just couldn't pass up. I wore a pulse oximeter and lowest I saw was 92% O2 Sat. Have fun exploring.
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