What's new
Van's Air Force

Don't miss anything! Register now for full access to the definitive RV support community.

SB-00043 and Section 9 for RV-10 and R-14/14A Published

greghughespdx

Well Known Member
Advertiser
Today Van's published SB-00043, which describes inspection for potential elevator cracks and a method of remediation on RV-10/RV-14, as well as recommended preventative steps that can be taken. In addition, RV-10 KAI section 9 and RV-14 KAI section 9 have both been updated to include the additional steps during original construction.

The related SB-00043 KIT used to comply with the bulletin can be found at this link.​
 
Hi Greg,

Can you elaborate on the purpose of the additional elevator counterweight? E-01414? (I assume that’s that it is from the instructions?)

Are the cracks caused by some kind of flutter or vibration?
 
Hi Greg,

Can you elaborate on the purpose of the additional elevator counterweight? E-01414? (I assume that’s that it is from the instructions?)

Are the cracks caused by some kind of flutter or vibration?

Sure. The E-01414 is covered in the Service Bulletin, starting at Step 16. The purpose is to offset the additional mass introduced aft of the spar, inside the trailing edges, when the sealant is applied internally.

The cracks are fatigue cracks, determined to be the result of pulse vibration such as happens from propeller wash/pulses and similar. The engine, propeller, and other aircraft configuration details will result in some variance in that regard, but the proactive placement of the sealant compensates for those potential fatigue-related stresses.
 
Greg,

I see that RV-14 KAI chapter 9 (elevator) has also been updated to match the new SB. In addition to the sealant instructions, the new chapter also revised the part numbers for the front and rear spars. Can you tell us what changes were made to the spars (or is this just a nomenclature change)?

Thanks!
 
If we have an empennage kit that’s not started yet, do we need to order the entire kit or can the counterweights be ordered separate?
 
Is the E-01414 Counterweight RV-14 specific?

I was also wondering this. I looked through the revised Section 9 plans for the RV-10 and RV-14 (posted yesterday) and while both talk about adding the sealant to the rear spar, neither make reference to the new E-01414 counterweight.

If the counterweight is meant to offset the added mass from the sealant, then I'm confused why the SB advises it should be added, but the revised plans (which also call for the sealant to be added) do not.

Perhaps the revised part numbers for the rear spar imply a change that means the counterweight isn't needed if you're using the new parts, versus the originals? Although it appears only part numbers for the RV-14 changed. The RV-10 part numbers appear the same.
 
Last edited:
Could we instead order 4 new E-614 and trim less lead off to increase the amount of counter-weight? If so, what total mass do we need on each side (L/R including inner and outer ?
What I have done is to install two additional nut plates in that area that matches the same counter weight and balanced my elevators after the paint using those nut plates. I am planning on just adjusting the weight after I have completed this SB. If you have not installed the elevator cap on yet, this would be an easy thing to do that will set you up for any future balancing of the elevator.
 
I was also wondering this. I looked through the revised Section 9 plans for the RV-10 and RV-14 (posted yesterday) and while both talk about adding the sealant to the rear spar, neither make reference to the new E-01414 counterweight.

If the counterweight is meant to offset the added mass from the sealant, then I'm confused why the SB advises it should be added, but the revised plans (which also call for the sealant to be added) do not.

Perhaps the revised part numbers for the rear spar imply a change that means the counterweight isn't needed if you're using the new parts, versus the originals? Although it appears only part numbers for the RV-14 changed. The RV-10 part numbers appear the same.

For the RV-14, it looks like the plans revisions alter the amount removed from the inboard counterweights (leaves 1/32" vs flush). I assume this negates the need for the new E-01414 counterweight. The RV-10 plans are likely the same.
 
For the RV-14, it looks like the plans revisions alter the amount removed from the inboard counterweights (leaves 1/32" vs flush). I assume this negates the need for the new E-01414 counterweight. The RV-10 plans are likely the same.

Good catch. Thanks!
 
In a pinch yes.

Will a regular Home Depot caulking gun work with the tube of Proseal?

In a pinch, yes.

1st challenge is the "piston" part that pushes are typically a little too large for the tube, cheap ones have smaller pistons. Otherwise it will deform the tube a bit, and you won't get to the bottom.

At the other end where the nozzle comes out it will tend to want to ride up towards the notch where you slide it in since the proseal tube is round at end rather than square. Zip tie fixes that.

... or get one of these https://www.aircraftspruce.ca/catalog/topages/sealantgun-rtnrcmbo.php, which will dispense much smoother.



Derek
 
Last edited:
In a pinch, yes.

1st challenge is the "piston" part that pushes are typically a little too large for the tube, cheap ones have smaller pistons. Otherwise it will deform the tube a bit, and you won't get to the bottom.

At the other end where the nozzle comes out it will tend to want to ride up towards the notch where you slide it in since the proseal tube is round at end rather than square. Zip tie fixes that.

Derek

Thanks Derek
 
I have no cracks so I plan to inspect annually for the time being.

It would be easy to install the counterweight. Is that advisable and would it mitigate the risk of getting cracks if I have none?
 
A new tool

Since a bunch of folks are going to be trying to figure out how to get Pro-seal out of a tube in the near future, I thought I'd share a bargain I found on Spruce. I had looked many times before but I only found much more expensive alternatives.

I really which I had found it sooner. Two ER tanks later, and still running strong.

Derek
 

Attachments

  • 2023-09-08_12-48-27.jpg
    2023-09-08_12-48-27.jpg
    30.4 KB · Views: 108
For the RV-14, it looks like the plans revisions alter the amount removed from the inboard counterweights (leaves 1/32" vs flush). I assume this negates the need for the new E-01414 counterweight. The RV-10 plans are likely the same.

FYSA: The updated plans don't show up when I go to /myaircraft/plans on Van's site. They do show up in the revisions area which took me a while to find. I would have never known about updated plans had I not seen it here, since I always go to the my aircraft / plans section to check revisions.
 
I have no cracks so I plan to inspect annually for the time being.

It would be easy to install the counterweight. Is that advisable and would it mitigate the risk of getting cracks if I have none?

I am fairly sure the counter weight is to counter the additional weight that has been introduced by the application of proseal and not for reducing/dampening pulses, if that is the cause. So, installing the counterweight without the proseal could cause imbalance if the elevators are currently balanced.
 
Online plans for section 9 out of date

I received my RV-10 empennage kit/plans on 9/5/2023. It appears Section 9 of the plans included are updated with the steps to add the proseal, and the counterweight changes. The plans are Rev 2, dated 6/27/2023.

However, when I go to the store, select My Aircraft, and go to the plans section 9 there, the plans are older, Rev 0, dated 1/28/2013. I was trying to check if the plans I got were the latest with the updates, but the online versions are much older than what I have. I expected the online versions to be the latest and greatest, but that does not appear to be the case.

Mark
 
The SB instructions mention using a solvent to thoroughly clean the area. Primer is not explicitly mentioned. Is it implied that I'd need to try to remove the primer (P60G2 in my case), or is that overkill?
 
If spreading the load (More support) with proseal does not solve the long term cracking from fatigue, I wonder if the next step will be thicker skins? Those thin skins are likely vibrating a fair bit with full power. I have no cracks at over 1200hrs and plan to have the plane for a very long time.
 
Why does it have to be proseal?

Given the apparent reason to apply proseal is to dampen vibrations in the joint where spar meets skin, why does it have to be proseal and not some other sealant such as Silkaflex? Doesn't have to be mixed and can use a regular caulk gun, etc...
 
Given the apparent reason to apply proseal is to dampen vibrations in the joint where spar meets skin, why does it have to be proseal and not some other sealant such as Silkaflex? Doesn't have to be mixed and can use a regular caulk gun, etc...

Or hardware store silicone… Proseal down here is like buying a car. Need to ring the bank manager for approval.
 
What happens if the proseal doesn't prevent cracks and the skin has to come off? How hard will it be to remove the skins?
 
What happens if the proseal doesn't prevent cracks and the skin has to come off? How hard will it be to remove the skins?
If the skin has to be removed, then I would be building a new elevator with all new parts as it would be much easier and maybe cheaper, considering the time spent.
 
Any guess on how long it would take to get replacement parts to rebuild the elevators, given the Recent Unpleasantness at the mothership? You're probably looking at years.
 
Since a bunch of folks are going to be trying to figure out how to get Pro-seal out of a tube in the near future, I thought I'd share a bargain I found on Spruce. I had looked many times before but I only found much more expensive alternatives.

I really which I had found it sooner. Two ER tanks later, and still running strong.

Derek

And these regularly show up on Ebay used, for about $50.
 
Since a bunch of folks are going to be trying to figure out how to get Pro-seal out of a tube in the near future, I thought I'd share a bargain I found on Spruce. I had looked many times before but I only found much more expensive alternatives.

I really which I had found it sooner. Two ER tanks later, and still running strong.

Derek

Is this designed to accept the 3.5 ounce cartridge installed into the cylinder? Surely ‘raw’ pro seal mix isn’t going in there, right?
 
Last edited:
What if you primed the inside of the elevator?

I'd really like to hear from the mothership on the topic of applying tank sealant to primed spars and skins. I know a lot depends on what kind of primer you used. Some of it comes off with rubbing alcohol and some of it is barely affected by acetone or MEK. Mine is the latter. I can also say that every time I have run the aluminum tape ripoff test on my primer, as suggested by Good Olde Gus at Master Aircraft Services, none comes off. It's a two-part epoxy primer made by AkzoNobel, 10P4-2NF. Similar to 463-12-8 but without cadmium chromate.

I suspect the mothership doesn't have experience with tank sealant bonding on top of this primer. <sigh> But maybe someone else on VAF does, or on some similar two-part epoxy primer, e.g. 463-12-8. :confused:
 
Is this designed to accept the 3.5 ounce cartridge installed into the cylinder? Surely ‘raw’ pro seal mix isn’t going in there, right?

There are two sizes. 6oz and the 3.5. You mix in the proseal tube and then insert the tube into the gun.

Derek
 
Added data needed

Would be helpful to understand more about the aircraft that have cracks, if this information is known.

1. How many reports of cracks?
2. Number of hours/cycles?
3. Aerobatics (RV-14)?
4. Prop type and dynamically balanced?
5. Has repair/mitigation been tested or is this just an engineering “best guess”?
6. Should there be a different balance weight requirement for in situ repair versus during initial build? Seems to me you could use much less sealant during initial construction.

Sure would be nice to know the above. Are there examples of RV-10’s with cracks or was the 10 drawn in because the elevator design is similar to the 14. Seems 10’s have been flying for more than 20 years and the 14 much less but different type of flying. Seems a 14 (4 banger) flying with a 2 bladed prop compared to a 10 with a 6 banger very different harmonics. (Regardless if a 2 blade or 3 blade). Anyone with a 10 having cracking issues ?
 
Definitely going to be in the post flight crack inspection crowd until one pops up and then I'll just build new elevators under the redesigned guidance. Screw ripping these things apart.
 
Agree with getting more info from the fleet.

RV-14 Taildragger

1.) 125 hours flight time
2.) Hartzell 2 blade, Blended Airfoil
3.) Dynamically Balanced
4.) No real acro, the occasional roll or loop
5.) No cracks
6.) Kit ordered just in case, but I will monitor on pre-flight and post flight.

RV-10 and RV-14 builders/owners please post your findings.
 
This is what the Van's demonstrator RV-14A's elevator looked like at Oshkosh 2022. Yes, over a year ago.

i-9Lw8zFD-M.jpg

At the time I was helping assist on the build of an RV-14 tail kit, so I asked why all of the cracks and stop drilling, along with all of the extra rivets. They mentioned the pulsations from the engine caused these and that proseal should be used under the structure. Too bad we already closed up this tail kit!
I took this photo just to remind myself that this area should be checked on RV-14's.
 
So they’ve known about this issue for well over a year, they modified the plans in June and we are just now hearing about the problem.

With my airplane just now at the paint shop, I’m more than disappointed in the lack of communication from Van’s. If we had been informed a year ago when they recognized the issue, I could have performed the mitigation work. Now it’s too late.

Yes sir! You have been supportive of the lcp issue so you understand that Vans has some items to improve upon. I feel your pain my friend. You’ll have a beautiful paint job and hopefully just keep inspecting with no cracks for a long while. Or are cracks acceptable yet? Maybe by next lcp update cracks are good to go.
 
Sure. The E-01414 is covered in the Service Bulletin, starting at Step 16. The purpose is to offset the additional mass introduced aft of the spar, inside the trailing edges, when the sealant is applied internally.

The cracks are fatigue cracks, determined to be the result of pulse vibration such as happens from propeller wash/pulses and similar. The engine, propeller, and other aircraft configuration details will result in some variance in that regard, but the proactive placement of the sealant compensates for those potential fatigue-related stresses.

A suggestion Greg:
There seems to be a large degree of misunderstanding among builders about balance weights. They are all different among RV models. I see many people trying to “balance” surfaces rather than referring to the balance limits in the construction manual. I’d refer people to the balance limits. RV10 elevators for example are designed to be trailing edge heavy up to a limit of 37in/lb.
Actually “balancing” them to zero would add something like 6lb to the tail of the aircraft…I’m sure people have done it.
 
So they’ve known about this issue for well over a year, they modified the plans in June and we are just now hearing about the problem.

With my airplane just now at the paint shop, I’m more than disappointed in the lack of communication from Van’s. If we had been informed a year ago when they recognized the issue, I could have performed the mitigation work. Now it’s too late.

I must say that i also was disappointed to hear that Vans knew about this for a year and said nothing even though I wouldn’t have been spared a paint issue . Adding this to the laser cut parts issue, i am starting to believe that things are not running at full speed inside the mother ship. I expected better from them and a bit sad that possibly they are not the same group we have come to admire. It seems clear that open and transparent communication is not a priority theme these days or possibly just sloppy engineering. We’ll just switch to to LC parts from a 3rd party, i am sure it is just as good; no need for QC. Then, well these cracking ele skins are happening to our demo plane, but i am sure the rest of the fleet is fine. Not encouraging stuff from guys that design airplane kits.

Larry
 
Last edited:
Yes sir! You have been supportive of the lcp issue so you understand that Vans has some items to improve upon. I feel your pain my friend. You’ll have a beautiful paint job and hopefully just keep inspecting with no cracks for a long while. Or are cracks acceptable yet? Maybe by next lcp update cracks are good to go.

Apparently, a couple of cracks in the elevator skins are NOT acceptable - since according to the SB - "if cracks are found, stop drill and add blind rivets prior to further flight" (emphasis added by me).

But a row of cracks in dimples that you probably can't see after assembly - certainly not in a fuel tank covered in proseal - may well be OK.

Testing or no testing - that's going to be a hard sell for a lot of people I suspect.
 
I must say that i also was disappointed to hear that Vans knew about this for a year and said nothing even though I wouldn’t have been spared a paint issue . Adding this to the laser cut parts issue, i am starting to believe that things are not running at full speed inside the mother ship. I expected better from them and a bit sad that possibly they are not the same group we have come to admire. It seems clear that open and transparent communication is not a priority theme these days or possibly just sloppy engineering. We’ll just switch to to LC parts from a 3rd party, i am sure it is just as good; no need for QC. Then, well these cracking ele skins are happening to our demo plane, but i am sure the rest of the fleet is fine. Not encouraging stuff from guys that design airplane kits.

Larry

Agreed.

So many unanswered questions regarding LCP, including (1) how did some of these parts ever leave Aurora and (2) who decided that "file out the notches and build on" was acceptable? I suspect there are some very unhappy employees having to work a lot of overtime to fix the problems created by decisions made at the top. Doubt there will be much in the way of profit sharing and/or bonuses for these folks any time soon - given that Van's is employee owned. Sorry for the thread drift...
 
I must say that i also was disappointed to hear that Vans knew about this for a year and said nothing even though I wouldn’t have been spared a paint issue . Adding this to the laser cut parts issue, i am starting to believe that things are not running at full speed inside the mother ship. I expected better from them and a bit sad that possibly they are not the same group we have come to admire. It seems clear that open and transparent communication is not a priority theme these days or possibly just sloppy engineering. We’ll just switch to to LC parts from a 3rd party, i am sure it is just as good; no need for QC. Then, well these cracking ele skins are happening to our demo plane, but i am sure the rest of the fleet is fine. Not encouraging stuff from guys that design airplane kits.

Larry

Larry, this is not new - - remember the step cracking? It took a while, but to be fair - - it is not a flying safety issue. Recognizing this field problem was just not in their range of interest until Van found out about it.

Having a good reliability group (3 people would be enough) that tracked all failures found (demonstrators included) will go a long way to correcting these issues. The fact that there is no "warranty $$$" to drive business planning that direction will slow the move as the organization matures. We will have just have to accept, and share, the growing pains of their engineering organization. Surely, the internal recognition of this is sinking in and reaching an action point. Break off a piece of that Kit Kat bar.
 
Another positive way of looking at it is to accept that material deficiencies in the design exist and when they occur plans are given to mitigate them. So far I’m inspecting the belly for a crack in the aft skin, the HS for a crack at the hinge rivets, wings for cracks at the aileron brackets and now cracks at the elevator spar. I could go rip all these apart and put the fixes in but I’m just going to inspect them for now. Especially the aileron brackets because the price of remediation failure is a new wing!

I wish it weren’t so but im glad to know what to look for. I don’t explore the boundaries of the flight envelope, fly gently, and don’t think I stress the plane much. So maybe I’ll never have to do these modifications. I bet the demonstrators have a lot more put on them than I do.

I’d be curious to know for all the crack SB’s how many units affected, hours at finding the deficiency, and a description of the owners flight mission profiles on average.

I will say thank goodness for cheap borescopes.
 
...as the organization matures....the growing pains of their engineering organization...

I'm not trying to bash Van's here, but...they're 50 years into this business now (just look at their website), and make claims to more of their aircraft being completed every day than several spam-can companies combined. They should already *be* mature by now.

I see 3 main problems that are being highlighted by this issue and the LC parts issue:
1. Design issues that lead to significant rework or "fixes" (this -10 and -14 SB);
2. Significant QA problems; and
3. Bad crisis management, communications and PR.

Item 1 can be addressed via the normal engineering and design process fixes, and overall they haven't had many; this -10/-14 cracking issue is probably one of the larger ones to come out, although they should have addressed it early on (see item 3).

Item 2 is a *real* problem. There was apparently poor or no QC at the vendor site after initial approval, and similarly for received parts. THAT'S a big deal, and a "mature" company should not have let these parts be accepted, let alone shipped, and gotten to the bottom of the problem very early on.

Item 3 is of their own making, and it seems every company has to re-learn the lessons here. Taking too long to acknowledge a problem exists, then taking even longer to let customers know, and then inadequate communications once the issue becomes known, etc. This is a business problem.

The point is that *mature* companies, like ones that have been in business for half a century and are, as someone said, at the top of the market sector should NEVER have let these issues get to this point.

Hey, I want them to not only survive but thrive, but they just seem to me (from the outside) to be floundering with these issues.
 
Larry, this is not new - - remember the step cracking? It took a while, but to be fair - - it is not a flying safety issue. Recognizing this field problem was just not in their range of interest until Van found out about it.

Having a good reliability group (3 people would be enough) that tracked all failures found (demonstrators included) will go a long way to correcting these issues. The fact that there is no "warranty $$$" to drive business planning that direction will slow the move as the organization matures. We will have just have to accept, and share, the growing pains of their engineering organization. Surely, the internal recognition of this is sinking in and reaching an action point. Break off a piece of that Kit Kat bar.

Yes, i get that. Cracking steps was an annoyance and not a safety issue, so didn’t get upset that they did nothing about it for years. No one likes to admit their errors. Cracking elev skins is a different animal for me. Maybe the engineers decided that the risk of these cracks leading to something more serious was remote and if that is the case I guess i am ok with it. Given the head in the sand approach along with build on guidance with LCP, i am not sure i trust that is the case anymore. Spent a lot of years in the corporate world and this just smells like a cultural and leadership issue to me. I hope they recognize the issue and make some changes before it is too late. I have always trusted that vans had my safety in mind, but that confidence is waining a bit.

To be clear, i do not see this cracking as a negative. On the whole, these planes are quite solid with limited flaws. The reality is, errors and unforeseen variables do present themselves even with the very best engineered products. My issue is solely with not telling their customers about known flaws that impact safety of flight. To me that is just unacceptable and destroys reputations. Will anyone ever trust boeing again the way they used to? I doubt it

My goal here is not to beat on vans or trash talk. I really am hoping some day van himself will see a post like mine and create a wake up call. I am a loyal customer and want to see them succeed.

Larry
 
Last edited:
I’d refer people to the balance limits. RV10 elevators for example are designed to be trailing edge heavy up to a limit of 37in/lb.
Actually “balancing” them to zero would add something like 6lb to the tail of the aircraft…I’m sure people have done it.

May I inquire where this info can be found or perhaps you can elaborate on that, and perhaps how the 37in/lb is measured?

I have always balanced my elevators after paint which required some additional weight added to the counter weight. This was emphasized by VANS tech much more in late 2000 and at least for the RV7 that I had built.

Here is some info on the construction manual.

"A normal (light) paint application on the ailerons and elevator will not upset their balance to a noticeable degree. However, a heavy paint job will require
that these surfaces be re-balanced and additional counterbalance weight added if necessary"
 
May I inquire where this info can be found or perhaps you can elaborate on that, and perhaps how the 37in/lb is measured?
"

My memory is fading, but I know this information was included somewhere with my 2007 era RV10 kit. The rudder was to be temporarily mounted to a horizontal fixture, a fish scale attached to the trailing edge, and used to hold the rudder level. ‘Arm’ was measured, in inches, to the rotation axis from the scale attach point. Multiplied by the indicated scale weight. (Correct units are ‘inch-pounds’, not in/lb as quoted).
 
My memory is fading, but I know this information was included somewhere with my 2007 era RV10 kit. The rudder was to be temporarily mounted to a horizontal fixture, a fish scale attached to the trailing edge, and used to hold the rudder level. ‘Arm’ was measured, in inches, to the rotation axis from the scale attach point. Multiplied by the indicated scale weight. (Correct units are ‘inch-pounds’, not in/lb as quoted).

Thanks Bob, I am not sure if I can visualized in my head as I would expect the fish scale only register the resistance that is in the pivot point which should be minimal.
I had used the fish line thru the attach points of the VS to make sure all three are in-line and would not cause any stress on the rear spar and was told that the rudder and aileron usually don't need balancing other than what VANS has provided as a counter weight.
 
Thanks Bob, I am not sure if I can visualized in my head as I would expect the fish scale only register the resistance that is in the pivot point which should be minimal.
I had used the fish line thru the attach points of the VS to make sure all three are in-line and would not cause any stress on the rear spar and was told that the rudder and aileron usually don't need balancing other than what VANS has provided as a counter weight.

The rudder needed to be removed and the rotation axis mounted in a HORIZONTAL orientation. The trailing edge of the rudder hangs down. The fish scale is then used to rotate the trailing edge up until the rudder is level in the horizontal plane. Clearer? (I know, a picture is worth a thousand words).
Edit. Yes, my plans-built rudder, with paint, were within spec. No extra weight was needed.
 
Last edited:
The rudder needed to be removed and the rotation axis mounted in a HORIZONTAL orientation. The trailing edge of the rudder hangs down. The fish scale is then used to rotate the trailing edge up until the rudder is level in the horizontal plane. Clearer? (I know, a picture is worth a thousand words).
Edit. Yes, my plans-built rudder, with paint, were within spec. No extra weight was needed.
Thanks again Bob, this makes sense. I had forgotten which way is vertical and which is Horizontal :)

Learning things every day.
 
seems like we started talking about the RV-10 elevator hinge moments but switched to the RV-10 rudder?
 
Back
Top