Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Perfect timing. Or not.

We're having wonderful weather this week with blue skies and temperatures in the 40's and 50's. This is, of course, perfect weather for spending a few hours a day out in the hangar working on the RV-12. It's also nice to spend what remaining time I have in the presence of my wonderful RV-6. Yes, the RV-6 is going to be listed for sale in the next few days. I've been consulting with a guy that can only be considered a well respected expert when it comes to anything RV, up to and including the buying and selling of them.

Why does selling my plane require input from an expert? That's a good question and the answer comes down to one thing: emotional attachment. I didn't build my RV-6 so I don't have the deep emotional investment that would come from being the planes progenitor, but to say that I can't possibly have become deeply attached anyway would be to say that a parent can't possibly have a deep and abiding love for an adopted child.

Where this emotional attachment becomes a problem is when it comes time to make realistic and pragmatic decisions on topics like asking price, preparation work, minor repairs, and the like. What the plane is worth to me is not necessarily what it will be worth to a dispassionate buyer, in other words, and spending a lot of money making little fixes may not be a wise investment.

Even making the decision to list the plane now was difficult. It might sell quickly and deprive me of the ability to fly in the nice Spring weather, or it make take ages to sell, depriving me of the space I will need for the RV-12 soon after starting the finishing kit. It's impossible to tell if my timing is right or not. If past efforts at achieving perfect timing are any indication, however, it won't be.

Case in point: I finished closing out the wing tip of the right wing yesterday. Looking ahead in the plans, I see that the flaperons are next. The parts for those are back home in the basement shop, so I got to thinking that I could probably just build them there. The timing of that thought is horrible. After all, wouldn't that have been the perfect thing to think of, say, in January??

By the way, I received a couple of helpful replies to my pondering over what to do about having forgotten to pull the fishing line through the wing to use later if I decided to install a lighting kit.

Anonymous said...
To retrofit tip lights, you cut a oval hole (about the size of a flattened softball) into the underside of the tip, near the handhold. The instructions provide a template. You would reach your hand in and grab the string and pull the new wires. There are only a couple of rivets you have to take out as well, in order to rivet on a new fiberglass piece that the tip lights mount to. That piece covers the hole you cut so it does not have to be neat. So you would really miss having the string!

Now for the right wing you have to cut the landing light hole. This is a small hole too but does give you a bit of access to the front of the ribs where the snap bushings are. But installing the landing light through that hole is going to be like endoscopy. I did it from the back before doing that upper wing skin. Tough decision. I actually left in a string even after installing the lights! An extra wire between the tip lights makes them stay in synch. You could also add a wire to switch the strobes separate from the position lights. I did not do either of these.

Bill H.
February 28, 2011 8:23 PM

Torsten said...
IMHO, inserting the fishing line right now is way easier than trying to do it through that tiny cut out in the wingtip that you'd open for the nav light fairing. It is also positioned at an awkward angle that would make it almost impossible to get your hand to the snap bushing in the outer wing rib through this hole unless you could get Egg's helping (small) hand to do it.
March 1, 2011 11:05 AM
Excellent advice. Which I chose to ignore.

Why? Well, I got to thinking that I ought to go ahead and find a way to push that fishing line through the bushings in the ribs. That would involve getting a long, thin stick to push in through the ribs, starting at the wing root. I then realized that because the wings are easily removable, the wing root will always be accessible to me. I might still have done it except for one thing: I also realized that I don't plan on ever spending $1,300 for lights - the RV-6 doesn't have them, and I have never missed them.

I still appreciate the time that Torsten and Bill put into their replies, though.

1 comment:

Torsten said...

I'll save this link and email it to you when Van's comes out with a more adequately priced lighting kit in the future. Just to rub it in your face :-D. Just kidding!
I am actually thinking about getting my RANS S-12S dressed up for sale as well. I would hate to lose it now that the weather is getting nice and warm again though and so I am a bit hesitant to list it. What if it sells right away? You see, I know that feeling very well. I will have to sell at some point soon though as I hope this will pay for the Engine Kit. And it better does, as I might have an otherwise ready plane sitting in my car port for a while ... :-(

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