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Fri, Aug 10, 2012

Vans RV-14 Surprised Crowds At Oshkosh

RV-FOURTEEN? Where did that come from? 

Something of a “stealth” project, the RV-14 made its inaugural public appearance at AirVenture a couple of weeks ago. but by the time the public got its first look at the new kit-built plane, it had already completed a comprehensive test program. The RV-14 is an aerobatic two-seat side-by-side airplane with a 46” wide cabin and a 27’ span. The wing uses the RV-10 airfoil and slotted flaps. A new cowling surrounds a Lycoming IO-390 producing 210 hp, but will accept the 200 hp IO-360. (There is NO option for a six cylinder engine.)  Fifty gallons of fuel is housed in two 25 gallon leading edge tanks. Tall seating and low canopy rails result in superb visibility – even better than previous RVs.  A tip-up canopy (the only canopy available) incorporates a slick hydraulic-strut assist and quick-release mechanism that makes it fit perfectly and open/close like a bank vault. A large baggage compartment behind seats can hold up to 100 lbs. The airplane rides on a new leaf spring main gear.

Vans said that the goal was to meet or exceed the performance of a 180 hp/constant-speed RV-7 in an airplane with better comfort, better visibility, longer range and more payload.

Like all other RVs, the RV-14 is built of riveted aluminum. However, the kit incorporates everything Van’s has learned in forty years, so building times should be substantially less than previous kits. All metal parts are completely formed and pre-punched -- even the main longerons. Rivet holes are punched full-size and main spars are assembled at the factory. The canopy bubble will come pre-trimmed. The plans/manual are combined in the style that works so well on RV-10 and RV-12. Complete wiring kits and avionics packages are designed and will be offered as options. A tailwheel RV-14 is in the works.

Wing kits should be available in September. After that, other airframe kits will be released at regular intervals until the complete airplane is available. After its Oshkosh debut, the RV-14 has joined the “demo fleet” at the Van’s Aircraft, Inc. factory in Aurora, Oregon.

FMI: www.vansaircraft.com

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