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Old 09-04-2018, 02:16 PM
smokyray's Avatar
smokyray smokyray is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: TX32
Posts: 1,804
Default No comparison...

Originally Posted by Stroh21 View Post
Hello VAF!

I'm ready to pull the trigger on starting an airplane build, now I need to decide which one. I've narrowed it down between a RV-8 and a Harmon Rocket. My question is, how much faster is a Rocket vs the RV-8. I know the RV-8 usually cruises between 180-190 True Air Speed. For the Rocket owners out there, how much faster is it? Trying to decide if loosing the extra baggage space is worth the speed.

Thank you for your time!

I owned my early model HR2 for 4 wonderful, fun, adventurous albeit expensive years. Having flown just about every iteration of the RV8 except the Six banger, there is no comparison.
The HR2 is far superior in takeoff, climb and cruise and personally I like it's handling and solid feel in turbulence. The shorter wing with more ribs is higher wing loading and being an RV4 wing with it's laminated spar (vs -8 solid extrusion) is arguably stronger.
Cockpit room and rear passenger room are also excellent as well as my extended baggage matched any baggage capability the 8 offers..

Downsides: Building a hybrid kit or melding add on parts to a existing kit. However comma, there is lots of information, parts drawings and expertise available right here. Flyboy accessories as mentioned above offers the F-4 raider mod and F-1 parts now.
Other downside is cost. My annual fuel bill & insurance cost was exactly twice my RV4's, for what it's worth.

Speed? I flight planned 190KTAS at 10GPH (65%) at 10,500' with 50 gallons aboard gave me nearly 1000NM range. Mine wasn't the fastest HR2 but I saw 230KIAS once flat out at 29"/2800RPM. (LyCon IO-540C4B5, Gami injectors, 10:1 Comp, E.I.)
Additionally, I flew it from my 1500' soft home turf strip in FL and took it into many gravel/dirt strips in ID and CO.

Any way you slice it the FB-4, Raider/Harmon Rocket or F-1 are wonderful Sport Planes and my HR2 was the closest thing to a personal F-16 I can think of. Trust me...
You won't be disappointed.


Last edited by smokyray : 09-04-2018 at 02:55 PM.
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