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Old 09-24-2019, 05:17 PM
Ted Christopher Ted Christopher is offline
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Braham, MN
Posts: 36
Default Lifting an RV12

Does anyone have experience lifting an RV 12 as it shows in the manual, with sturdy saw horses under the tail and nose section. Mine has only been lifted by the A&P using jacks under the wings (and cushioned boards) but I don't have jacks and would like to be able to service my own tires.

I think I would build a cushioned support a couple inches higher that the front belly of the plane, press down on the tail, put it the front support in place and lift up the tail with a jack of some sort under the tail cone using a cushioned board, then lower the rear tie down ring onto the support I've built.

Does this sound right?
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Old 09-24-2019, 05:44 PM
DaleB's Avatar
DaleB DaleB is offline
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Omaha, NE (KMLE)
Posts: 2,220

The maintenance manual will give you the details of the stands to build, and how to get the plane onto them. There is a nice set of plans here:

I built my set 25" tall as specified, then put a couple layers of carpet on top. We occasionally increase the height an inch or so using foam pads cut from those interlocking floor mats.

Word of caution: WATCH OUT FOR THE TRANSPONDER ANTENNA when you slide the front stand in. They're cheap, but a PITA to replace.

Omaha, NE
RV-12 # 222 N980KM "Screamin' Canary" (bought flying)
Fisher Celebrity (under construction)
Previous RV-7 project (sold)
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Old 09-24-2019, 06:21 PM
Mich48041 Mich48041 is offline
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Riley TWP MI
Posts: 3,010

See Page 1-17 of the maintenance manual or search for "Lifting and supporting".
If working by yourself, the nose can be lifted by hanging 60 or 70 pounds of weight on the tail tie-down. Slide the front sawhorse into place. Buy this scissor jack from Harbor Freight to lift the tail. $30 with 20 percent coupon. SKU: 96406 It extends to 23 inches. After lifting the tail, slide the rear sawhorse into place as shown in the maintenance manual.
Joe Gores
RV-12 Flying
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Old 09-25-2019, 06:47 AM
John-G John-G is offline
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Northeast Ohio
Posts: 642


Good advice given by others.

I would like to add a couple of thoughts.

First ... I found if one builds two 25" sawhorses per the plans it will support the fuselage just fine, however it will not quite give enough height to get the main gear totally off the ground. I found I needed to make another sawhorse just a little taller. I use the 25" sawhorse aft and the 27 1/4" taller one forward.

Second ... It is really easy to purchase an inexpensive Harbor Freight tall jack and mount it on a platform to use for jacking up the tail cone.

Here is a link to my blog covering both items mentioned above.

Hope you find the above useful.
RV-12 Wings, Empennage, Fuselage, Finishing, Avionics and Powerplant kits all completed
Now Flying!!

Dues paid until September 2020
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Old 06-18-2020, 12:21 AM is offline
Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Posts: 5

On my kit the extrusion with the threaded hole for a tie-down ring has a similar threaded hole facing upward, and there's a hole in the skin that could be enlarged for a lifting ring. Has anyone tried using that?
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Old 06-18-2020, 06:31 AM
bobg56 bobg56 is offline
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Peachtree City, GA
Posts: 103

I made a fixture from angle iron that I bolt to the MLG leaf spring, it has a flat space on it for a bottle jack. It works great for tire and wheel bearing work.
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Old 06-18-2020, 08:26 AM
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DonFromTX DonFromTX is offline
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: La Feria Texas
Posts: 3,822

I had seen the need for a lift during my build and decided a conversion of a Harbor Freight lift would work fine. To my surprise, it is so easy to use the new owner even uses it for a quick easy tire pressure check. If interested PM me for photos.
A&P, PP-SEL, Pathological Flier, EAA Technical Counselor
EAA Chapter 595 President,
Retired US Army Officer
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Old 06-18-2020, 09:34 PM
RFSchaller RFSchaller is offline
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 2,724

I do not lift my 12 by anything but a jack using the tie down point, but if I had to I would drill the tie down blocks from the top down to the threaded portion, insert eye bolts from the top to thread through the threaded portion of the block, put on an area washer and nut at the bottom and then lift by the eye bolts.
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Old 06-19-2020, 12:02 AM
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Piper J3 Piper J3 is offline
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Hinckley, Ohio
Posts: 1,886

Originally Posted by RFSchaller View Post
I do not lift my 12 by anything but a jack using the tie down point, but if I had to I would drill the tie down blocks from the top down to the threaded portion, insert eye bolts from the top to thread through the threaded portion of the block, put on an area washer and nut at the bottom and then lift by the eye bolts.
Lifting one side of the airplane by jacking up wing at tiedown bolt puts a concentrated force on the wing. Wing spar is a cantilever designed to have uniform loading spread over entire length. Sometimes spars are tapered and thinner toward the tip in order to save weight. Wing tip sees nearly zero load and root of spar sees entire load. I doubt if designer calculated strength to allow lifting with concentrated force at 2/3 length of spar.
Jim Stricker
EAA #499867
PPL/ASEL 1970 - Sport Pilot since 2007
80 hrs Flying Aeronca Chief 11AC N86203
1130 hrs Flying 46 Piper J-3 Cub N6841H
Bought Flying RV-12 #120058 Oct 2015 with 48TT - Hobbs now 558

LSRM-A Certificate 2016 for RV-12 N633CM
Special Thanks... EJ Trucks - USN Crew Chief A-4 Skyhawk
MJ Stricker (Father & CFI) - USAAF 1st Lt. Captain B-17H
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Old 06-19-2020, 12:05 AM
pilotyoung pilotyoung is offline
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 179
Default Lifting an RV-12

To life my RV-12 to change a tire or brake, I use a floor jack. I have two pieces of 4 X 4 that I have cut at an angle to match the floor. I have rubber padding on one side of each piece. I then use a large C clamp to clamp both pieces securely to one landing gear. I then jack it up with the floor jack. It works well to jack up one side at a time. here is a picture.

John D. Young, RV-12 Owner
Serial Number 120022, N6812Y
Bought it as a flying airplane in Feb. 2018
Just passed 240 hours flight time in RV-12, and 10,000 hours mostly in corporate jets. I am a CFI; CFII; MEI; and a advancd Ground Instructor, CFIG; and hoping to be able to help new RV-12 owners by doing some transition training for new builders and owners in RV-12's.
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