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Old 02-15-2017, 09:26 PM
mturnerb mturnerb is offline
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Ponte Vedra, FL
Posts: 769

Originally Posted by rmartingt View Post
To be fair, I didn't know that (and couldn't have) in 2013
No intent to criticize your decision - and I think you made other very good points about your reasons. I was pointing it out for others' interest because I think it will influence their decision making.
Turner Billingsley
RV-14A In Progress
N14VB Reserved
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Old 02-15-2017, 09:52 PM
StuBob StuBob is offline
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Posts: 248

Originally Posted by rv7charlie View Post
...based on what I've *heard* and the little I've seen on the -14 kit/manuals, it might not be a bad bet that a slow build -14 would build almost as fast as a QB-7.

The -7 is obviously a very good kit. Stuff fits. But the manual/separate plans arrangement of the docs, and the rather random nature of the plans drawings, mean that you can spend a lot of time just reading/correlating/*finding* what you need to perform a task.
Bingo. That's what I suspected, based on my RV-8 experience and what I've seen of the -14 plans. It seems I spend a lot of time trying to locate on the plans the stuff that's referenced in the manual.
Stu F.
Indianapolis (KMQJ)
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Old 02-15-2017, 11:31 PM
MartinACFactory's Avatar
MartinACFactory MartinACFactory is offline
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Posts: 97

When visiting Van's in May 2015, I had the chance to sit back and forth between the RV-7A and the RV-14A demo aircraft. For a cross-country aircraft, I'd pick the RV-14A anytime, for its cabin roominess over the -7.

For a short moment, that RV-14 made me reconsider building a -8. Nah, that didn't last long, I decided I would be a tandem seater :-)
Martin Leroux
Terrebonne, Quebec, Canada
RV-8 s/n #80414
Empennage: 95% (ready for inspection)
Fuselage: 90% (Canoe Final Riveting completed, put aside for now)
Wings: Maybe 50%, working on fuel tanks
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Old 02-16-2017, 07:11 AM
Reflex Reflex is offline
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Kansas
Posts: 97

I had to trouble making the same decision. I really never had any doubt that I wanted to build a -7. The reasons for the -7 were:

Many of them flying shows a proven design
Multiple builders on this site would help with tough spots
Engine choices
Cost of operation

I sat in the -14 at Oshkosh and spoke to a couple of guys that had built other RV models who were building -14s, they said there was no comparison to the -14 kit and other Vans kits. After sitting in the -14, it took me about 10 minutes to change my decision. The reasons for the -14 are:

Stability (I thought it may make for a better instrument platform)
Useful load
Speed of assembly while not being a QB
Wife loved the room compared to the -7 (yeah...this one should be at the top of the list).

I'm not a large guy (6' and 185), but the additional room really made a difference to me. Yes....I like the idea of being aerobatic, but my main mission is cross-country flying.

Dues Paid for 2018
Empennage Complete
Getting Ready to Close Wings
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Old 02-16-2017, 09:11 AM
RV7ator RV7ator is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Boise, ID
Posts: 964

The -14 came along while I was deep into my fifth -7 build. I pawed around in the -14 when it first appeared, barely dry paint, at OSH. I'd still stick with -7s.

Granted, the -14 kit goes together faster and (maybe) straighter for first time builders. But you wind up with a tipper, a tad slower, not as robust an airframe if you accept Van's aero limitations, and a bit slower and thirstier than a 6/7.

If you want volume, and most of your time is a two-bubba cross-country, the -14 might be for you. BUT there are downsides in my mind.

A slider option makes all the difference. With the -14 (or any tipper) you step onto the wing, tip the seat forward, hopefully your heavy, bulky load will fit between the seat and the seat back brace/flap motor housing into the baggage area. Think of the fun lifting it out. It's a two-ibuprofen experience; everything's done bent over and reaching. A two-hour mod will allow a -7 slider to tip for easy access to the baggage area. You can also lift off the entire canopy in 45 seconds. If a tail dragger, you stand on the ground and drop the 60# ice chest straight down onto the baggage floor. (Nose draggers, you must lift higher - and watch out for the step sticking out!) The -14'a larger baggage volume may not be all that useful for w&b concerns; consider your loadings. The -14 begs for a non-existent baggage door. If you really want a tipper, then I'd say the -14 will load easier than a -7.

The -14's center tunnel restricts foot movement. I can sprawl in a -7. Also, you can load heavy, long stuff across the forward fuse floor ahead of the fuel selector and forward center (no tunnel) for better load balance.

The -7s more nimble (according to those who've also flown a -14) and efficient. The few extra inches of the -14 are not useful to me (71", 185#) and it has some loading issues obviated by a slider. It's simply a bigger, chubbier airplane with all the differences you'd expect compared to a smaller airplane. You pays your money and takes your choice.

John Siebold

Last edited by RV7ator : 02-16-2017 at 09:16 AM.
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Old 02-17-2017, 04:24 AM
Chattin35 Chattin35 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Boise, ID
Posts: 232
Default I'll play

Non-monetary advantages of the RV-7:

-Takes off and lands shorter
-Climbs faster
-Handles better (subjective)
-Looks better (subjective)
-More efficient airframe (better performance achieved with less engine)
-More engine options (ability to burn auto gas, car/diesel/other experimental engine installs)
-More customization options and aftermarket products available (ie: slider canopy)
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Old 02-17-2017, 07:13 AM
StuBob StuBob is offline
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Posts: 248

Originally Posted by Chattin35 View Post
Non-monetary advantages of the RV-7:

-Takes off and lands shorter
-Climbs faster
-Handles better (subjective)
-Looks better (subjective)
-More efficient airframe (better performance achieved with less engine)
-More engine options (ability to burn auto gas, car/diesel/other experimental engine installs)
-More customization options and aftermarket products available (ie: slider canopy)
According to Van's website, a 180hp -7 cruises at 199mph, a -14 at 195mph. The -7 takes off in 575' and lands in 500', where the -14 takes off in 512' and lands in 550'. At gross, the -7 climbs 1650fpm, the -14 1500fpm.

The 7 does look better and it might handle better depending on what you're after. The -14 probably handles better on an ILS.

The engine options, particularly MOGAS, are a compelling argument in these uncertain times.

The flip side of more customization options is that more options means more decisions and more decisions make more opportunities for paralysis by analysis and for regret!

When you ignore the money, this becomes very difficult. It almost boils down to build time. And money!
Stu F.
Indianapolis (KMQJ)

Last edited by StuBob : 02-17-2017 at 07:17 AM. Reason: Changed something.
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Old 02-17-2017, 08:42 AM
MikeyDale's Avatar
MikeyDale MikeyDale is offline
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Garden City Texas
Posts: 814

What I enjoy about my 7; Short wingspan tucks in nicely in my hanger, slider canopy with extended rails is great and I can have it off in less than 5 minutes for cleaning or working on the plane, I can cruise around the county goofing off on 6gph, cheaper to build, wealth of knowledge and support.

Why I would consider a 14; better vision sitting higher in the cockpit is #1, more shoulder room even though my wife and I are a perfect fit in the 7, faster and easier to build, it is just a awesome looking airplane!
Mike Hillger
Garden City, Texas
First Flight
Build Blog
Dues Paid
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Old 02-17-2017, 10:01 AM
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ppilotmike ppilotmike is offline
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 1,846
Default I would go for a 7A

I have flown a 4, a 7A and a 10. I have sat in all of Vans aircraft, including the RV-1. So, I have a good feel for the "room factor" of Van's designs. I strongly believe that the extra room provided by the 14A does not outweigh (pun definitely intended) the drawbacks of its larger footprint. I think Vans hit a homerun with the layout of 7 and 9, which are the same. It's just the right compromise of space vs. efficient design. To me, the 10 feels like a nimble, responsive, 4-door sedan, which is not too far from it's mission. It's almost too roomy! As long as I'm using the car analogy, to me, the tandems and single places feel like an Indy car and the 6 and 7 feel like a Corvette (Convertible if you have a slider!). I have not flown the 14, but when I sit in it, it feels like a Jeep. A combination of fun-to-drive, ruggedness and utility, but not a sports car. Just my opinion.
Mike Rettig
EAA Chapter 301, President
VAF Dues Current: Paid for 2019 on 12/03/18
RV-10 (41PX Reserved) Fuselage
F-14 (Pedal Plane - Daughter's Project) "Flying"

Last edited by ppilotmike : 02-17-2017 at 10:04 AM.
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Old 02-18-2017, 02:28 AM
rvbuilder2002 rvbuilder2002 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Hubbard Oregon
Posts: 7,868

Originally Posted by ppilotmike View Post
I have not flown the 14
I have....

And it fly's just like it was designed to...... like an airplane that falls somewhere between an RV-10 and an RV-7.

More nimble feeling than the 10 but still a great straight and level cross country airplane. Not as nimble as the 7, but very roomy feeling with a lot of baggage space and a higher full fuel useful load (With almost an additional hour of fuel range on board), but still sporty enough for acro and having fun doing it.

The 5.5+ hours of fuel on board is nice at times also.
And if you do speed comparisons to the RV-7A at the higher altitudes that RV fliers tend to use, the speed advantage of the RV-7 begins to shrink to almost nothing (the RV-14's higher aspect ration wing with different airfoil begins to pay off).

I have made numerous trips with TAS of 171 Kts at 8.1-8.3 GPH (that's just shy of 197 MPH). Probably only about 3-4 MPH slower than an RV-7A at the same altitude.
Any opinions expressed in this message are my own and not necessarily those of my employer.

Scott McDaniels
Hubbard, Oregon
RV-6A (aka "Junkyard Special ")
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