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  #1  
Old 10-29-2007, 08:00 PM
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donaziza donaziza is offline
 
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Default Getting out of an RV-8 in an emergency

From: "Gus Funnell" <gusf@vansaircraft.com> Save Address

To: "Don Oberlander" <donaziza@bellsouth.net>
Subject: Re: Getting out of an RV 8 in an emergency
Date: Monday, October 29, 2007 9:24:17 AM [View Source]

"To all RV 8 drivers" I sent this letter to Vans and thought I would sure their thoughts with y'all.

Don




Different canopies may behave differently, and of course the airspeed is
critical. At slow speeds you can definitely open it, at high speed, maybe not.

I am aware of at least one guy who exited an 8 in the air, so it is possible.
Alas, he did it without a parachute so we don't have a first hand report.

Vans



On 27 Oct 2007 at 1:08, Don Oberlander wrote:

Forwarded by: "Support" <support>
Forwarded to: gusf
Date forwarded: Mon, 29 Oct 2007 06:16:28 -0800
From: "Don Oberlander" <donaziza@bellsouth.net>
To: <info@vansaircraft.com>
Subject: Getting out of an RV 8 in an emergency
Date sent: Sat, 27 Oct 2007 01:08:47 -0400

> Hi Van's,
>
> I'm sure you've probably been asked this many times before, but
> I'm new to RV's. I think I've read in " Van's Air Force" (in the
> last couple of months), that in an emergency situation in an RV 8 (
> ie engine failure-forced landing, or aircraft on fire),
>
> 1> you can open the canopy just before landing (engine failure), or
> you can pop it in the air (fire), in order to bail out, it may or
> may not take the vertical stabilizer off---- TO---- you can't open
> the canopy at all at flying speed-it simply won't open, ie a
> parachute is worthless. WHICH IS CORRECT??
>
> 2> Has anyone actually done any of this? I can't imagine the canopy
> wouldn't open in the air--I would "think" it "would" open with a
> bang and tear off.
>
> My thoughts were "in an emergency forced landing" pop it just before
> touch down, so as not to trapped inside, but I don't really know if
> my thinking is flawed or not after what I've read. I've got a big
> hunting knife inside which from my Navy training said "thrust
> straight up at the apex of the canopy and it well shatter". I guess
> if you flipped over and were upside down, you'd be trying to come
> out of the side of the fuselage with the hunting knife, assuming
> your head was still attached. (OK gruesome stuff, I know, but you
> have to plan ahead-no matter what).
>
> Anyway, you get the idea of what I'm trying to ask. What is or is
> not correct?
>


****E-MAIL PRIVILEGED INFORMATION****


From: "Gus Funnell" <gusf@vansaircraft.com> Save Address

To: "Don Oberlander" <donaziza@bellsouth.net>
Subject: Re: Getting out of an RV 8 in an emergency
Date: Monday, October 29, 2007 9:24:17 AM [View Source]




Different canopies may behave differently, and of course the airspeed is
critical. At slow speeds you can definitely open it, at high speed, maybe not.

I am aware of at least one guy who exited an 8 in the air, so it is possible.
Alas, he did it without a parachute so we don't have a first hand report.

Vans



On 27 Oct 2007 at 1:08, Don Oberlander wrote:

Forwarded by: "Support" <support>
Forwarded to: gusf
Date forwarded: Mon, 29 Oct 2007 06:16:28 -0800
From: "Don Oberlander" <donaziza@bellsouth.net>
To: <info@vansaircraft.com>
Subject: Getting out of an RV 8 in an emergency
Date sent: Sat, 27 Oct 2007 01:08:47 -0400

> Hi Van's,
>
> I'm sure you've probably been asked this many times before, but
> I'm new to RV's. I think I've read in " Van's Air Force" (in the
> last couple of months), that in an emergency situation in an RV 8 (
> ie engine failure-forced landing, or aircraft on fire),
>
> 1> you can open the canopy just before landing (engine failure), or
> you can pop it in the air (fire), in order to bail out, it may or
> may not take the vertical stabilizer off---- TO---- you can't open
> the canopy at all at flying speed-it simply won't open, ie a
> parachute is worthless. WHICH IS CORRECT??
>
> 2> Has anyone actually done any of this? I can't imagine the canopy
> wouldn't open in the air--I would "think" it "would" open with a
> bang and tear off.
>
> My thoughts were "in an emergency forced landing" pop it just before
> touch down, so as not to trapped inside, but I don't really know if
> my thinking is flawed or not after what I've read. I've got a big
> hunting knife inside which from my Navy training said "thrust
> straight up at the apex of the canopy and it well shatter". I guess
> if you flipped over and were upside down, you'd be trying to come
> out of the side of the fuselage with the hunting knife, assuming
> your head was still attached. (OK gruesome stuff, I know, but you
> have to plan ahead-no matter what).
>
> Anyway, you get the idea of what I'm trying to ask. What is or is
> not correct?
>


****E-MAIL PRIVILEGED INFORMATION****

Last edited by donaziza : 10-29-2007 at 08:48 PM. Reason: Request anyone's thoughts on this
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  #2  
Old 10-30-2007, 10:50 AM
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donaziza donaziza is offline
 
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Default #2 getting out of an RV 8 in an emergency

If any of you RV 8 guys out there have more to add to my first thread on getting out of an RV 8 in an emergency, and Vans response, I'd love to hear from you.

Don
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  #3  
Old 10-30-2007, 01:12 PM
omerward omerward is offline
 
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Don, A friend of mine recently lost an engine in his RV-8A and landed in a field. The nose wheel dug in (should have had a tail wheel) and flipped it on its back. The canopy shattered and he and his wife were trapped for about an hour before rescuers got to them. Just scratches and bruises, thankfully, but it was frightening. In this case, escape was not possible because the canopy shattered and they were up against the dirt with only a tiny bit of daylight on one side and not enough room to get out. Opening the canopy before touchdown might be an option, but it would probably slam shut on touchdown since there is nothing to keep it back. Also, the canopy does provide some impact protection if it flips. I have tried to open mine in flight and it will only open at very low speeds, and then only a little. Some people put pull pins (like gear pins) in the front attachments so you could pull them and push the canopy up in order to bail out. If you want to wear a parachute, I think this is the best option. Good luck. --Sam Ward--
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  #4  
Old 10-30-2007, 01:29 PM
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Mike S Mike S is offline
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What about a tip over, such as by Show Planes???

http://www.showplanes.com/
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Last edited by Mike S : 10-30-2007 at 01:30 PM. Reason: spelling correction
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  #5  
Old 10-30-2007, 02:09 PM
sf3543 sf3543 is offline
 
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Location: San Antonio, TX
Posts: 928
Default Recent First Hand Experience

After having recently been involved in a crash, with my RV8, here are my thoughts.
I was pinned in at the leg and couldn't get out without help.
I saw fuel coming out of the wing.
My back was hurt, but I could move around enough to turn off the master. After that, if there wouldn't have been help, I don't know what I would have done. The canopy came open on it's own, so that wasn't a problem, but I would have liked to have had a fire extinguisher at hand. It would have needed to have been mounted on the fuselage side, perhaps under the arm rest to be reachable to me, since I ended up laying down across the pilot and back seats. (The pilot seat back failed downward and allowed me and the seat to go down under the seat back support, explaining the bump on the back of my head.)
Something to use as a pry bar or canopy breaker would have been nice. I had one in my RV6 that replaced the right hand stick. Need something similar in the RV8. But it has to be able to be reached after the crash.
Also, a metal snips was required to get me out of the wreckage. I guess it wouldn't be a bad idea to have one of these somewhere. With a snips and a pry bar, you could do a lot to save yourself.
I think a cell phone is absolutely imperative! It may be your only method to summon help at a deserted airport or other site. I'll keep mine in my pocket, rather than loose in the plane, for all future flights.
Assume that you will be injured, or pinned, in any kind of crash, so having these tools in a reachable location is a must. I guess you have to be creative here, since you never know what condition you or your plane will be in.
By the way, once you are out, and possibly injured, you'll want a first aid kit, at least somewhere in the plane, so you can get at it post crash.
If you are going to crash, try do it where you will get immediate help. I can't thank all of the people who helped me, and are still helping me, enough. The RV and aviation community is wonderful. I can't say that enough! But, my next plane will have all of the above tools in it somewhere, at a minimum.
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  #6  
Old 10-30-2007, 04:09 PM
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rv6ejguy rv6ejguy is offline
 
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I keep the cell phone in my upper flight suit pocket and a pointed safety hammer in the leg pocket to break the canopy in case of a flip over. My 6A canopy is hard to pull back even 3 inches at anything over 30 knots and it closes itself again anyway. Front release pins would probably allow the canopy to be pulled off the aircraft automatically due to the low pressure on its top surface- ok if you are wearing a chute and out of options.
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  #7  
Old 10-30-2007, 04:17 PM
RV8N RV8N is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rv6ejguy View Post
I keep the cell phone in my upper flight suit pocket and a pointed safety hammer in the leg pocket to break the canopy in case of a flip over. My 6A canopy is hard to pull back even 3 inches at anything over 30 knots and it closes itself again anyway. Front release pins would probably allow the canopy to be pulled off the aircraft automatically due to the low pressure on its top surface- ok if you are wearing a chute and out of options.
If the safety hammer is one of those plastic units with the metal tips that are sold in Bed, Bath, and Beyond or other such places, I recommend you test it.

I bought one and intended to mount it in my -8. Before I did, I took some left-over pieces of plexi from the canopy and tried to break it. I hit it as hard as I could and barely scratched it. I threw the thing away.

YMMV

Karl
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  #8  
Old 10-30-2007, 04:42 PM
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N941WR N941WR is online now
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RV8N View Post
If the safety hammer is one of those plastic units with the metal tips that are sold in Bed, Bath, and Beyond or other such places, I recommend you test it.

I bought one and intended to mount it in my -8. Before I did, I took some left-over pieces of plexi from the canopy and tried to break it. I hit it as hard as I could and barely scratched it. I threw the thing away.

YMMV

Karl
A few years back one of the car mags took one of these things to a junk yard to test. Not only couldn't they break a car window with it, they couldn't cut a seat belt either.

Total junk.
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  #9  
Old 10-30-2007, 07:28 PM
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rv6ejguy rv6ejguy is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RV8N View Post
If the safety hammer is one of those plastic units with the metal tips that are sold in Bed, Bath, and Beyond or other such places, I recommend you test it.

I bought one and intended to mount it in my -8. Before I did, I took some left-over pieces of plexi from the canopy and tried to break it. I hit it as hard as I could and barely scratched it. I threw the thing away.

YMMV

Karl
I tested it when I got it on some old 3/16 plexi. Had to hit it pretty hard but it would shatter it. Now how hard would it be to swing it with this much force while you are hanging upside down in the harness? Pretty hard I'm thinking. I do have a hatchet in the survival kit however and some big screwdrivers in the tool kit...

I'll bust that sucka somehow.
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Turbo Subaru EJ22, SDS EFI, Marcotte M-300, IVO, RV6A C-GVZX flying from CYBW since 2003- 426.1 hrs. on the Hobbs,
RV10 95% built- Sold 2016
http://www.sdsefi.com/aircraft.html
http://sdsefi.com/cpi.htm


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  #10  
Old 10-30-2007, 09:46 PM
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Ironflight Ironflight is offline
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Karl is right - those little orange hammers with the point are made to bust car windows....at least, that is the kind of thing we use in fire/rescue work sometimes. I can't really imagine swinging it hard enough to bust plex while hanging upside-down in my harness...
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