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  #1  
Old 05-31-2016, 09:29 PM
czechsix's Avatar
czechsix czechsix is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Spring Hill, KS
Posts: 248
Default Beringer Wheels & Brakes for RV-14A Now Available

After flying and maintaining my RV-8A for almost a decade I have developed a great appreciation for anything that increases reliability and reduces time spent on maintenance tasks. To that end when I decided to build an RV-14A I started thinking about improvements that could be made during the construction process that will make my life easier once the airplane is flying. Wheels and brakes are one of the most time consuming repetitive maintenance headaches (second only to oil changes), and a flat tire away from home is a major inconvenience at best. So I spent some time researching Beringer’s wheel and brake products. Beringer has been around for over 30 years, getting their start in the motorcycle industry and began making aircraft wheels and brakes in 2002. They have developed a number of improvements and benefits compared to the traditional designs (Cleveland, Matco, and Grove) that Vans supplies with the stock kit. Here’s a list I compiled:
Tubeless tires – getting rid of the inner tube eliminates the most common source of leaks and flat tires. There’s a reason cars, motorcycles, and large aircraft quit using inner tubes decades ago. I had a flat caused by a tube failure in my -8A and of course it happened away from home and was a major pain to deal with.
Sealed wheel bearings – eliminates the messy task of cleaning and regreasing the bearings.
Lighter Weight – it’s difficult to get an exact weight comparison for the entire Beringer system vs the stock Matco & Grove components (including all fittings, brake lines, etc) but I estimate 6-10 lb weight savings based on the published data I could find. It’s evident when holding and inspecting the Beringer parts that each component has been designed to eliminate as much weight as possible.
Better quality brake pads and better braking power than the stock brakes from Vans – this should translate into longer brake pad life. As an interesting side note, when I spoke with Grove they told me they recommended a more powerful brake set than what Vans decided to include in the kit. I expect the stock brake setup on the -14A is adequate most of the time, but I once experienced significantly reduced braking performance in my -8A when they got really hot after multiple Young Eagle flights, so there are times when the stock brake performance may be marginal.
Better master cylinder design – there have been issues with the Matco & Cleveland master cylinders in RVs because a side load is applied when the brake pedals are pressed. The Beringer master cylinders use rod end bearings on both ends which eliminates any binding/side load. As an added bonus the rod ends allows the brake pedal geometry to be adjusted according to individual preference.
Anodized aluminum parts not only look nicer but are more corrosion resistant than the magnesium parts in the stock kit from Vans.
Stainless steel braided brake hose comes standard in the Beringer kits
Tapered axle makes removal and installation of the wheel much easier…no more banging on the wheel while the airplane is up on jacks, hoping it doesn’t fall off...
Cotter pin is outside of the axle nut on the Beringer design, making it much easier to remove and reinstall. No need to align the nut just perfectly while trying to get the cotter pin back in.
Axle and roller bearing design allows the axle nut to be tightened without putting excessive preload on the bearings. This is especially relevant in the nosewheel where Beringer includes an axle spacer that resolves the well-documented drawbacks of Vans’ stock setup.
• You can put the nosewheel valve cap on without interfering with the nosewheel fork.
• The Beringer main wheels can be removed without unbolting & separating the brake caliper assembly, making tire changes easier.
• The Michelin Aviator tires come already mounted and inflated, and the tires are better quality (should wear better and last longer) than the stock tires from Vans.
Up until now Beringer has already offered wheel & brake kits for most of the RV series, but did not yet have a kit specifically for the -14A. I worked with Vans and Beringer to figure out all the parts that are needed (as well as which parts to omit from the Fuselage and Finish kit orders so you don’t take delivery of the Matco and Grove components that you won’t be using). The Beringer RV-14A kits are now available and I received mine this past week. Here’s a picture of what it looked like out of the box:



Parts shown above comprise the Fuselage kit with pilot & copilot master cylinders (p/n SRVFU05), Finishing kit with main gear wheels & brake calipers (SRVFI04), Nosewheel kit (SRVFI01), and metric tool kit which consists of a few metric hex bits (OHT02). There are several notable differences compared to the kits for the rest of the 2-seat RV series, including:
• A new tapered axle specific to the -14A that includes the extension to support the outboard wheel pant bracket. Beringer used Vans’ 3D drawings of the stock axle so the new one should be a perfect bolt-on replacement. Note that there is a Beringer wheel available that will fit the stock Vans axle, but it is heavier and more expensive. Using the new Beringer tapered axle saves weight, allows a less expensive wheel to be used, and has maintenance benefits as I mentioned above.
• Some different AN fittings due to the different brake line fuselage pass-through design of the -14A.
• The lower fittings on the master cylinders use banjo fittings with a 20 deg sideways bend to provide better routing of the brake hoses (see picture below).
• The nosewheel kit is identical to that of the RV-10 that Vans carries (p/n U-00012 in Vans catalog).
Beringer also offers some options that I did not purchase, including:
• Parking brake (never needed one on my RV-8A)
• ALIR anti-skid system
• Brake reservoirs that can be mounted directly on the master cylinders (I much prefer to use Vans reservoir on the firewall as it’s easier to inspect and refill, not to mention less expensive)
If you order any of the above options there will be different/additional fittings needed to connect them. Also, if you have an RV-14 (taildragger) and want to use Beringer products, you’ll need to work with Beringer to get the correct parts. Most of the parts will be the same (excepting the nosewheel of course) but the brake line lengths may be different and the firewall pass-through fittings will also be different.

Continued below due to post size limit...
__________________
Mark Navratil
Spring Hill, KS
RV-8A N2D #80583 - built/flew/sold
RV-14A #140017 - wings complete, empacone in progress...

Last edited by czechsix : 06-14-2016 at 10:46 AM. Reason: corrected statement about -14 using different wheels/axles, they should be the same as on the -14A
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  #2  
Old 05-31-2016, 09:31 PM
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czechsix czechsix is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Spring Hill, KS
Posts: 248
Default RV-14A Wheels & Brakes Continued…

Here is a diagram of how I am installing the Beringer system in my RV-14A:



Notes about the schematic:
• The Beringer catalog shows the brake lines going from the reservoir to the pilot side master cylinder first, then to the copilot side. This is arbitrary and it will work either way. Since the -14A is set up with the reservoir on the copilot side it makes more sense to use Vans’ recommended routing where the hoses go to the copilot side first.
• The Beringer fuselage kit includes two fittings (HYD-030D & HYD-024D) that serve to connect Vans reservoir to the brake hoses. I deleted these two parts from my order and plan to use a single AN826-3D tee fitting instead (the AN826 is much less expensive and I already had one).
• My schematic uses AN designations for the fuselage pass-through fittings. If you get a parts list for the kits from Beringer they use different nomenclature. So just FYI, a HYD-024D = AN816-3D and HYD-028D = AN822-3D.
Here is a list of parts to delete when you order the Vans -14A Fuselage Kit:
• (2) Brake Mast Cyl Left-1 MATCO 4/6/7/9/10/12 and (2) Brake Mast Cyl Right-1 MATCO 4/6/7/9/10/12 $265.68
• (1) PT-062X1/4X15' HI PRES BRAKE HOSE $9.15
• (1) PT-062X1/4X9' HI PRES DUAL BRKE SYS $5.73
And a list of parts to delete when you order the Vans -14A Finish Kit:
• (1) nosewheel U-NW501.25 $111.83
• (1) U-1009 axle $11.48
• (1) U 55-204 wheels and brakes $652.00
• (3) 5.00X5-6 6 PLY TIRE MAIN $165.00
• (3) U 5.00X5-6IT TUBE FOR 5.005-6 $125.70
• (2) U-00009 AXLE $72.44
• (4) U-405 AXLE SPACER $8.28
• (2) MS21025-20 AXLE NUTS $17.26
• (1) AT0-032X1/4X12' SOFT ALUM TUBE COIL $8.52 (part of this tubing may be for the fuel vent lines…can someone confirm?)
Deleting the above parts from the Fuselage and Finish kits adds up to about $1500 total savings that helps offset the cost of the more expensive Beringer equipment.

Now for some more pictures of the Beringer parts for the RV-14A. Here’s the new axle:









Continued below due to post size limit…
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Mark Navratil
Spring Hill, KS
RV-8A N2D #80583 - built/flew/sold
RV-14A #140017 - wings complete, empacone in progress...

Last edited by czechsix : 06-16-2016 at 04:35 PM. Reason: Removed Bag 3075-1 from the list of parts to delete from the Fuselage Kit because it also contains fuel system fittings.
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  #3  
Old 05-31-2016, 09:33 PM
czechsix's Avatar
czechsix czechsix is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Spring Hill, KS
Posts: 248
Default RV-14A Wheels & Brakes Continued…

Here are a few pictures of the nose wheel with the axle and the spacer that allows the inner bearing race to be clamped between the spacer and the axle flange when the axle bolt is tightened. Very nice design!







This picture shows how the 20 deg sideways bend in the lower banjo fittings will improve the routing of the brake hoses around the upper fittings, providing more clearance between the hoses and the pilot’s feet on the pedals:



Here’s the whole set partially assembled…



Other/Misc Info:
• Some people have worried about fixing a flat tire with the tubeless design. Beringer sells a kit to reinflate & seal a puncture (‘Spray Anti-Puncture’ in their catalog), but any commercially available ‘fix-a-flat’ product designed for a tubeless tire should work. Here’s a kit that comes with plugs and CO2 cartridges: http://www.stopngo.com/pocket-tire-p...co2-inflation/
• Beringer parts are available in the U.S. from several sources including their Chicago U.S. headquarters and Aircraft Spruce. OEMs like Cirrus & Pilatus are now including Beringer as standard equipment and their products are gaining popularity in far flung places like Alaska, so I don’t expect parts & support to be an issue.
• Desser carries retread 5.00 x 5 tires (several brands) that are designed to be used in a tubeless configuration, so when it comes time to change tires you’ve got affordable options if you prefer not to buy new Michelin Aviators.
• For general questions or quotes you can contact Viviane Michaud (Beringer’s U.S. Sales Manager in Chicago) at us.sales@beringer-aero-usa.com or 708-667-7891.
I hope this information is useful and saves others the time to do all the research that I did. I will post updates here in the future when I get the brakes and wheels installed (it will be a while). I do not plan to update any of the prices listed above, so please consult Vans & Beringer for current pricing.
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Mark Navratil
Spring Hill, KS
RV-8A N2D #80583 - built/flew/sold
RV-14A #140017 - wings complete, empacone in progress...

Last edited by czechsix : 05-31-2016 at 09:51 PM. Reason: typo correction
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  #4  
Old 06-01-2016, 02:58 AM
Mike H Mike H is offline
 
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Location: Savannah
Posts: 806
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Very thorough and well documented infomation. Thanks Mark! Planning to use these on my -14A.
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A&P IA PPL ASEL
RV-14A kit S/N 140170
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  #5  
Old 06-01-2016, 05:12 AM
MED MED is offline
 
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Location: Aiken, SC
Posts: 153
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This looks like a nice upgrade. What was the cost for a 14A?
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  #6  
Old 06-01-2016, 05:51 AM
Tom023 Tom023 is offline
 
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Location: Cypress, TX
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Thanks Mark! Now that I've decided on a slow build fuse, this is where I am putting the money I save. I may add a parking brake, but you've done all the homework and then some!

Last edited by Tom023 : 06-01-2016 at 05:56 AM.
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  #7  
Old 06-01-2016, 06:20 AM
TS Flightlines TS Flightlines is offline
 
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Location: Ridgeland, SC
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They do make a nice product!
Tom
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Teflon Hose Assemblies for Experimentals
Proud Vendor for RV1, Donator to VAF
RV7 Tail Kit Completed, Fuse started-Pay as I go Plan
Ridgeland, SC
www.tsflightlines.com
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  #8  
Old 06-01-2016, 04:54 PM
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czechsix czechsix is offline
 
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Location: Spring Hill, KS
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Default Cost

Quote:
Originally Posted by MED View Post
This looks like a nice upgrade. What was the cost for a 14A?
Mark,

The standard price I was quoted for all the Beringer parts shown above is $4343. Beringer's products are originally priced in Euros so as the exchange rate fluctuates it will probably affect the price in US dollars. After you deduct the parts from the Vans fuselage and finish kits you'll be looking at a total upper of around $2800. I wish Vans included Beringer as standard equipment on the -14A because you don't get full list price credit for the Matco and Grove parts that are removed from Van's kits, otherwise the cost upper would be less.

One thing I considered doing to save some money is to use the Beringer wheels and brake calipers with the Matco master cylinders that come with the kit from Vans. This would provide the benefits of the lightweight wheels, tubeless tires, sealed bearings, tapered axles, better brake calipers, etc, but reduce cost by around $1000 compared to buying all of the master cylinder components from Beringer. If you do this you’ll need to purchase Matco’s ‘intensifier kit’ which is a sleeve to reduce the master cylinder bore to 0.5” for the correct hydraulic ratio to work with the Beringer calipers. Note that neither Beringer nor Matco will endorse this combination and I have not tried it to prove that it will work, but there’s no inherent reason why you can’t use master cylinders and calipers from different suppliers (Vans already does this in the stock RV-14A kit with Matco master cylinders and Grove brakes). The critical part is getting the right hydraulic ratio which Matco’s intensifier kit should provide.
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Mark Navratil
Spring Hill, KS
RV-8A N2D #80583 - built/flew/sold
RV-14A #140017 - wings complete, empacone in progress...
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  #9  
Old 06-02-2016, 04:37 AM
MED MED is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Aiken, SC
Posts: 153
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Thanks Mark. This definitely looks like something I will try to do. I plan to order the fuselage at Oshkosh, so your list tells me which parts to omit from the kit. As of yesterday, Beringer does not list a kit for the RV-14, unless I missed it on their website. I'm sure your contact will be able to help me get the right parts when the time comes. Thanks for blazing the trail.
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  #10  
Old 06-03-2016, 06:40 AM
xorb xorb is offline
 
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Location: Edmonton, AB
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hi Mark,
What is in the plastic container above the stainless wire in you last picture? it looks to have a dark label that I can't make out,
thank you
Darin
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