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  #11  
Old 06-17-2018, 09:04 AM
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Mel Mel is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmarshall234 View Post
There is only one first.
Actually by having a highly qualified test pilot perform the first flight, you get two. The first flight of the aircraft and your first flight of the aircraft.
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  #12  
Old 06-17-2018, 11:02 AM
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Ironflight Ironflight is offline
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I recently did the first flight and five hour Phase 1 for a neighbor’s ELSA RV-12. He had decided long before that he’d rather have me do it, because even though an ELSA Aircraft is supposed to be conforming, and therefore the risk of an airplane issue is reduced, there is still a lot of emotion that goes in to a first flight by a builder, and that can reduce your capability to act rationally if there IS a problem.

He had done the transition training with Mike Seager BTW - but it was four years ago, and he’s been flying his Bonanza ever since - which doesn’t really make one current in an LSA....

After I flew the test program, I “checked out” a neighborhood CFI for an hour in the plane, and then he took the owner up to get him current - then turned him loose. We haven't been able to keep him on the ground since!

One thing to consider, and I told my neighbor this. The Phase 1 program is well documented, and a great way to learn the airplane, explore the envelope in a structured way, and to sharpen one’s skills at holding airspeeds and altitudes to very tight tolerances. I suggested that he repeat the program - not for the airplane, but for the pilot. I’d suggest that to anyone who wants to get a great start on flying their RV-12.
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  #13  
Old 06-17-2018, 12:17 PM
rv8ch rv8ch is offline
 
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Default first flight

This is one of those things that in my not-so-humble opinion, if you are asking the question, you already have the answer.
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  #14  
Old 06-17-2018, 01:53 PM
rvbuilder2002 rvbuilder2002 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironflight View Post
One thing to consider, and I told my neighbor this. The Phase 1 program is well documented, and a great way to learn the airplane, explore the envelope in a structured way, and to sharpen one’s skills at holding airspeeds and altitudes to very tight tolerances. I suggested that he repeat the program - not for the airplane, but for the pilot. I’d suggest that to anyone who wants to get a great start on flying their RV-12.
I couldn't agree more.
The RV-12 PAP (production acceptance procedure) was actually written in a specific way, so as to introduce a new RV-12 pilot to the airplane as much as it was to flight test the airplane.
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  #15  
Old 06-17-2018, 02:10 PM
rvbuilder2002 rvbuilder2002 is offline
 
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Default Regarding personal attachment........

It looks like the post questioning whether an airplane builder would be more inclined to make flight decisions biased towards saving the airplane if things go bad, has been delete by the author or moderator.

[post was deleted by the author; S.Buchanan]

I admit it is probably dependent on a particular persons personality, but I don't think anyone needs a masters degree in psychology to know that this would likely be a factor with a lot of people.

It happens a lot. Not just on initial test flights. Why else would someone try and execute a turn back to a runway, stall/spin, and die, when there was totally acceptable terrain within their field of view on climb out from the runway?

I think this is one of the most compelling reasons for people to have another pilot do the first flight. There is nothing wrong with doing it yourself, but if you do, I think this is one of the primary thoughts that should be resolved in the pilots mind.... Are you ready to let the insurance company own your airplane with only 0.05 on the hobbs meter?

BTW, it is also the primary reason I have an internal conflict with the second pilot for phase one program (at least for the first couple of flights).
In this case, there is now 2 people aboard, and they probably don't both have the same mind set regarding the outcome of the flight should the engine fail at a critical time. Hopefully that is something that gets some serious discussion before that situation is encountered........
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Last edited by Sam Buchanan : 06-17-2018 at 06:27 PM.
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  #16  
Old 06-17-2018, 02:30 PM
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JonJay JonJay is offline
 
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I deleted it. I felt it was unnecessarily argumentive.
I honestly have never felt any attachment to my build, or any other airplane I have flown. They are just machines. I have been in an emergency situation and I relied on my flight training and flew the airplane to the scene of the crash. I rebuilt that airplane and did the first flight on it after. I have only felt anxiety before a first flight, which I still feel today before every flight. Not debilitating, and I hope I never lose that feeling.
As human animals, we all behave differently and a first flight probably isn’t the time to know how you might react, but that risk is just another factor to consider.
The first flight was important to me. I watched many like minded folks do theirs and I wasn’t going to miss the only opportunity I had. I took the risk, but not before careful planning and appropriate training.
If doing the fist flight is important to someone, they should do all it takes to mitigate the risks but no flight is risk free. Nothing worth while in life is.
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  #17  
Old 06-17-2018, 03:27 PM
Tom Martin Tom Martin is offline
 
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I have had 13 first flights in new aircraft over the last 25 years. My most exciting and memorable first flight was the one I did not do, on my new RV4. At the time I had about 400 hours, 300 tail wheel, but I had never flown a RV. We had a very experienced pilot at our field and he did the honours.
Two years later when I had a rocket to take to the air I was told by the "experienced" pilot that with my 300 hours of RV4 time in the two years, that I was the best pilot for the job. All went well, however I will always remember seeing my first plane, the RV4 flying that first flight. Seeing all the parts working together, under the skilled hand of an excellent pilot, is extremely satisfying.
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  #18  
Old 06-17-2018, 03:38 PM
DRMA DRMA is online now
 
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I'm still several months away from my RV-10 first flight, but I have already talked to an extremely qualified RV-10 pilot who has done a number of first flights about being the second pilot for the first flight. Right now I'm inclined to make the first flight with him, but with clear agreement that he is the pilot in command. I might even insist that he take left seat for that flight. My final decision on whether I'm in the plane or not for the first flight will probably be made just ahead of the first flight and will depend on how long it has been since my transition training (hopefully only a week or 2, but hard to guess due to the need to book the training a few months in advance and the uncertainty of when the plane will be ready) and how current I am in my Grumman on that day.


If I'm not on board the first flight, I may ask him to make the 2nd flight with me.
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  #19  
Old 06-17-2018, 04:35 PM
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Default Anyone considering using AC 90-116 for first flights...

Quote:
Originally Posted by DRMA View Post
I'm still several months away from my RV-10 first flight, but I have already talked to an extremely qualified RV-10 pilot who has done a number of first flights about being the second pilot for the first flight. Right now I'm inclined to make the first flight with him, but with clear agreement that he is the pilot in command. I might even insist that he take left seat for that flight. My final decision on whether I'm in the plane or not for the first flight will probably be made just ahead of the first flight and will depend on how long it has been since my transition training (hopefully only a week or 2, but hard to guess due to the need to book the training a few months in advance and the uncertainty of when the plane will be ready) and how current I am in my Grumman on that day.
If I'm not on board the first flight, I may ask him to make the 2nd flight with me.
PLEASE read AC 90-116 very carefully. It is quite restrictive as to the qualifications of all pilots on board.
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Mel Asberry..DAR since last century
A&P/EAA Tech Counselor/Flight Advisor
Specializing in Amateur-Built and Light-Sport Aircraft
<rvmel(at)icloud.com>
North Texas (8TA5)
RV-6 Flying since 1993, 172hp O-320, 3-Blade Catto (since 2003)
Legend Cub purchased 12/2017
FRIEND of the RV-1
Eagle's Nest Mentor
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  #20  
Old 06-17-2018, 05:22 PM
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RV8JD RV8JD is offline
 
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Default AC 90-116, "Additional Pilot Program for Phase I Flight Test"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mel View Post
PLEASE read AC 90-116 very carefully. It is quite restrictive as to the qualifications of all pilots on board.
To make it easy for folks, here is the link --> https://www.faa.gov/documentLibrary/.../AC_90-116.pdf
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Last edited by RV8JD : 06-17-2018 at 05:24 PM.
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