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  #1  
Old 07-14-2016, 12:13 PM
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gbitzer gbitzer is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 17
Default RV-6 Dressing up for the big dance

My RV-6 just had it’s 15th birthday and I was honored when Ken Scott chose it as Miss February for the Van’s 2016 calendar.



Rosie’s post about the 30th Anniversary of the RV-6 event at OSH struck a nerve and I knew it was time to tuck my 6 back in the hangar for a few OSH improvements. I fly a fair amount of IFR and rain is like sand paper at 200 mph. A new coat of paint was in order. This also provided me a chance to make a few improvements. Although I liked my original paint scheme I wanted to spice it up a bit. Some type of checker board was the answer. Steve Melton’s posts on his paint project encouraged me to take on the painting project myself. Although I had repainted the wheel pants and cowling over the years this was my first attempt to paint the entire plane unassisted. Using a PPG base coat / clear coat system made the process longer but much easier in my mind. It also made more complicated designs possible with my skill level. Unfortunately I could not fit the entire plane in the booth.



Masking the tail’s new checker board pattern



After the clear coat was applied



After clearing the first wing


Although I was an early member of the Team RV formation team I never added smoke to my -6. This was the perfect opportunity. There are several nice smoke kits listed in VAF but I didn’t want to risk getting smoke oil in the cockpit. I decided to work with Marvin Homsley (http://www.smoke-system-helper.com/) to modify his very clean “hidden RV6 tank”. Marvin kindly removed the filler neck and provided 3 threaded ports (Flop tube exit, refill port, and vent). In an effort to keep the installation as clean as possible I designed a “one button” refill solution that would allow me to use the diaphragm pump to generate smoke as well as refill the tank. The pump and 2 solenoid valves were installed under the passenger seat.


pump / solenoid plumbing and electronic controls

I also added a small recess in the belly to mount a spill proof disconnect (“oil stinger”) for easy refill. I simply connect the female disconnect hose and drop it in my smoke oil container. A hidden switch actives the pump and solenoid valves to pump oil from the smoke oil container into the on board tank. If I happen to pump too much oil it simply drains out the vent line near the refill “stinger”.


Photo of the recessed oil refill quick connect port (stinger)

Initial testing worked well. I hope to be flight testing this weekend.
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Greg Bitzer
RV-6 / 180 CS
BE36 Bonanza
DragonFly Tug
Airwave Pulse Hang Glider
TeamRV
Stoney Point Field - 6GA0 Atlanta, GA

2017 VAF Dues Paid
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  #2  
Old 07-15-2016, 07:14 AM
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rmartingt rmartingt is offline
 
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I like the smoke fill system! Neat, clean, and hidden.

Could we see a picture of the tank in position, and could you post the part numbers/source for the QD fittings and solenoid valves you used?
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  #3  
Old 07-15-2016, 08:44 AM
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gbitzer gbitzer is offline
 
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rmartingt, all of the smoke system items including the disconnects are available directly from Marvin at www.smoke-system-helper.com. Marvin is a great source of info. I found the 12V 1/4" 3 way solenoid valves at Valves4Projects on Ebay. I could not find many options for small 3 way valves. Given the tight space and extra weight from the valves I chose to plumb this with hard lines rather than the rubber hose that Marvin provides with his complete kits. That proved to be a challenging process. I'll post more pics for you. Since we're neighbors feel free to fly over to 6GA0 to see it. Greg
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Greg Bitzer
RV-6 / 180 CS
BE36 Bonanza
DragonFly Tug
Airwave Pulse Hang Glider
TeamRV
Stoney Point Field - 6GA0 Atlanta, GA

2017 VAF Dues Paid
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  #4  
Old 07-15-2016, 12:12 PM
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rmartingt rmartingt is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbitzer View Post
rmartingt, all of the smoke system items including the disconnects are available directly from Marvin at www.smoke-system-helper.com. Marvin is a great source of info. I found the 12V 1/4" 3 way solenoid valves at Valves4Projects on Ebay. I could not find many options for small 3 way valves. Given the tight space and extra weight from the valves I chose to plumb this with hard lines rather than the rubber hose that Marvin provides with his complete kits. That proved to be a challenging process. I'll post more pics for you. Since we're neighbors feel free to fly over to 6GA0 to see it. Greg
If I had access to an airplane, I would... but if you're going to be at Oshkosh in the beginning of the week, maybe we could meet up? I'm planning to be there Mon and Tues.
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RV-7ER - fuselage structure in work
There are two kinds of fool in the world. The first says "this is old, and therefore good"; the second says "this is new, and therefore better".
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  #5  
Old 07-15-2016, 12:40 PM
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Kahuna Kahuna is offline
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Location: Gold Hill, NC25
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Great to see her getting spiffed up.
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  #6  
Old 07-15-2016, 05:59 PM
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gbitzer gbitzer is offline
 
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Bob, you can reach me at gbitzer@cisco.com. Expecting to arrive Sunday. Happy to share anything that might be helpful. I've learned much from all of the folks on Doug's party line.
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Greg Bitzer
RV-6 / 180 CS
BE36 Bonanza
DragonFly Tug
Airwave Pulse Hang Glider
TeamRV
Stoney Point Field - 6GA0 Atlanta, GA

2017 VAF Dues Paid
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  #7  
Old 08-01-2016, 08:42 AM
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gbitzer gbitzer is offline
 
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Location: Atlanta, GA
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Thankful to have been one of the 16+ RV-6s that were in the OSH Anniversary Parking area. Man that was a long walk to HBC. OSH was a "sea of RVs" this year.

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Greg Bitzer
RV-6 / 180 CS
BE36 Bonanza
DragonFly Tug
Airwave Pulse Hang Glider
TeamRV
Stoney Point Field - 6GA0 Atlanta, GA

2017 VAF Dues Paid
Reply With Quote
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