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  #1  
Old 02-10-2018, 10:11 PM
DrDrift DrDrift is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Central Florida
Posts: 15
Default WTB: RV-3!

I've been asking around about RV-3s for a while, and just as things seem to be in place for me, the market dries up!

I posted an ad here on VAF in December and got a few good responses, along with some traffic from a Wanted ad on Barnstormers. The only airplanes I know of that are still for sale are well outside my price range.

On the plus side, the past two months have been very educational to me on what I might expect with regards to pricing. My budget is strained at $35k and more comfortable at $30k. In that price range, I've seen about 5 RV-3s come and go.

With regards to specifications, here's what I would love:

Year: No real preference, although newer than 1990 seems comforting

Engine: 0-320 seems like the right choice. I've seen one with an 0-290 and another with an 0-360, but the middle choice is probably best.

Instrumentation: I will want an attitude indicator (G5?), so if it doesn't already have one, I'll need to consider it in the budget. Panel mount radio and transponder (handhelds are clumsy). An autopilot would also be great, since I'll be taking this frequently on travel.

Lighting: I will likely end up needing to fly occasionally at night, so NAV, strobe, and landing lights would be a plus and save me from having to install
them myself.


Do you know of any RV-3s that are (or can be) for sale?
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  #2  
Old 02-11-2018, 07:19 AM
jliltd jliltd is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Rancho San Lorenzo
Posts: 286
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I do see you are specifying an RV-3. I f you take your equipped formula and apply it to a nice flying RV-3B it will be out of your price range, especially if equipped with the factory B wings which are things of beauty. A straight RV-3 as specified should be within your upper limit. Price will decrease if you remove autopilot, EFIS and other type of items frok your wish list.

You could work it in your favor by purchasing a well built 3 with average panel and add improvements over time. A G5 is a quick and simple process install. Autopilot is more work and if auto-trim is desired and the bird has manual trim even more so. Although I personally prefer manual trim. Cutting a landing light into a nicely painted leading edge D section isn't for the faint of heart.

Good luck. There is a reason why Vans himself states that the 3 is his favorite. I own 7 birds including a stunning 8 and the 3 is my choice for pure fun. The 8 is my choice for shared flight and cross country.

Jim
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RV-3B
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  #3  
Old 02-11-2018, 07:28 AM
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Steve Melton Steve Melton is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 1,440
Default

the RV market is dry as a bone.
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Steve Melton
Cincinnati, OH
RV-9A, Tip-up, Superior O-320, roller lifters, 160HP, WW 200RV, dual impulse slick mags, oil pressure = 65 psi, EGT = 1300F, flight hours = 600+ for all

Simplicity is the art in design.
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  #4  
Old 02-11-2018, 02:30 PM
DrDrift DrDrift is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Central Florida
Posts: 15
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Jim,

Thanks for the advice. I agree with your assessment. There was a $17k RV-3 with an O-290 that just sold. That would have been fine, even with a really basic panel. At minimum I need a good structure, a reliable engine, and basic instruments. I'm willing to do everything else over time, but it would be nice to have it ready to go at purchase.

I have seen a few RV-3s advertised for $50 to $60k, but there have been enough ads around $30k that suggest my budget is not unreasonable.

There really does appear to be something magical about the -3. Twice now when I've asked the seller for a purchase agreement, they have changed their minds and decided to keep the airplane. Steve, the market right now is especially dry, although I'm hoping something will come up in the next few weeks/months that is within my budget and specifications. It would also be wonderful if the sellers actually followed through with the sale!
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  #5  
Old 02-12-2018, 02:06 PM
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dacronwall dacronwall is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Palo Alto,CA
Posts: 78
Default RV market

I bought my RV-3 4 years ago, and have never looked back.
Mine was built in '84, had standard wings and an IO-320. I bought it broken needing a motor mount and gear legs for $18k.By the time I got it on the gear and flying, I was in for $25k.
Since then, I have put lots of sweat equity into it, including cowl mods, engine cooling plenum, oil cooler shutter, a new forward panel and other minor mods.
I replaced all the flight instruments, the radio, transponder (STRATUS ESG with 2i for ADS-b in/out), added landing light, new strobe power supply, and new battery. ($8,500)
Last year I put on a custom Catto 2-blade prop, and had the CN-1 and CN-2 wing upgrades done ($11,000)
So as you can see, the $50k number is not far from reality.
My bird is ADS-b compliant, low time engine, wing mods done, night VFR, electric trim and though not glass panel, all the instruments are new. $20-$30k is not a bad place to start looking, but at that price you WILL be putting several bucket loads of cash into it to get where you want to be.
Stay away from too much fancy stuff that adds weight. Its not a great cross country machine due to size and limited fuel. I'm ready to get out after about 2-3 hours anyway, and its easy to hand fly, so I have never felt I needed auto pilot.

Worth every penny....and sorry to say....I am not looking at selling.
And I whole heartedly agree....The RV-3 flys the best of 'em all...And the lighter the better...
Good Luck!
Dave Cronwall
N66GB
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  #6  
Old 02-12-2018, 07:44 PM
jliltd jliltd is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Rancho San Lorenzo
Posts: 286
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Yup. Nice RV-3's are rare due primarily to the numbers built and the fact most were plans built. And single-seat aircraft are not as popular to build for obvious market reasons. However, unlike most single-seat aircraft the RV-3 has carved out a niche of followers like I haven't seen. Not quite a cult but more like connoisseurs of control harmony and performance flight.

So when I decided a nice RV-3B was in order it took me two years of trolling before I found and bought one. I set up search bots on some of the more popular aircraft classifieds sites and auction sites. I also stayed on top of the advertising here on VAF with regular check ups. Speaking of which I see more good RV's hit VAF prior to any other advertising site so the good birds are usually snatched up here prior to mass media advertising.

I knew it was going to be a treasure hunt from the beginning and set myself up for it. It took so long I almost gave up and forgot about it until one fateful day I found a really nice 160hp RV-3B and jumped on it. As a rule nice ones have to be jumped on immediately. A few weeks ago I bought an impeccable RV-8 the same way (drove 9 hours overnight to inspect the bird and seal the deal within a couple of days of it hitting VAF).

My point is stay on top of things and don't give up. Continue your due diligence and be prepared to react. Everything comes up for sale sooner or later. Whether show plane or beater. They eventually get moved.

Good luck with your search. The RV-3's are really great.

Jim
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  #7  
Old 02-13-2018, 12:07 PM
bisquit bisquit is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Blessing,texas
Posts: 97
Default Project

I have a rv3a people been asking for pictures haven't had time but will try get some this weekend. It's a project we took the engine and instruments out for a rv4 it was a flying plane with no issue just needed a pilot. If interested let me know will try get some pictures. Out to all asking.
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RV 3 kit bought still in garage
RV 3 N3456B bought
25 yr VFD
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  #8  
Old 02-14-2018, 09:11 PM
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KCutri KCutri is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Canandaigua, NY
Posts: 8
Default RV-3B

I just bought this RV-3B, after owning an RV-8A, RV-8, and Super RV-8. 780 Empty, and 0-320 160hp.... Great birds!https://drive.google.com/file/d/1S-6...w?usp=drivesdk
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  #9  
Old 02-15-2018, 01:43 PM
DrDrift DrDrift is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Central Florida
Posts: 15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bisquit View Post
I have a rv3a people been asking for pictures haven't had time but will try get some this weekend. It's a project we took the engine and instruments out for a rv4 it was a flying plane with no issue just needed a pilot. If interested let me know will try get some pictures. Out to all asking.

bisquit,

A few of us have been eyeing your airplane for a while. I'm not ready to take on a project, but you might have luck on some of your other interested buyers. One of them just emailed me asking for some insight into the status of the aircraft. If you can get him the photos, it sounds like he's interested. I've sent him all the ones I have.
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  #10  
Old 02-15-2018, 01:50 PM
DrDrift DrDrift is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Central Florida
Posts: 15
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jliltd View Post

So when I decided a nice RV-3B was in order it took me two years of trolling before I found and bought one. I set up search bots on some of the more popular aircraft classifieds sites and auction sites. I also stayed on top of the advertising here on VAF with regular check ups.
...

My point is stay on top of things and don't give up. Continue your due diligence and be prepared to react. Everything comes up for sale sooner or later. Whether show plane or beater. They eventually get moved.
Jim,

Thanks for the feedback. I'd love to know more about how you setup your search bots. I have a subscription to the RV-3/A section of one of the sites, but most of the notices I get are from my own Wanted Ads!

This post here at VAF actually generated a few responses. Super-thanks to all who have emailed me so far. There's a range of options and I'm certainly receptive to hearing about any others.

The nice part about having a deal fall through is that I took the time to get all the details ready to go. Financing, insurance, transition training, storage. All that is now on stand-by waiting for the right combination of capability and price.
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