First Look – Van's RV-14 Taildragger


Kitplanes Magazine got a chance to fly the new RV-14 from Van's this week - less than a week after its return from a debut performance at AirVenture 2015. Editor in Chief Paul Dye spent a couple of hours bopping around northwestern Oregon with factory pilot Mike Seager, and reports that the airplane's handling has improved over the original tricycle gear version he flew in 2012, and that the taildragger option will please many who are comfortable with the little wheel in back, especially those who frequent rough fields that have never seen a roller or a paving machine. Equipped with the slightly smaller IO-360 instead of the IO-390 installed in the original plane, factory pilots have reported that the speeds are comparable – or even better than – the tricycle gear version. This is great news for builders who have stashed away an angle-valve engine from their old Arrow or Mooney and have just been waiting to give it a fresh overhaul and hang it on their RV.

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Kitplanes Flies the New RV-14

Photo: Richard VanderMeulen

Kitplanes Editor in Chief Paul Dye was along for the ride as photographer Richard VanderMeulen shot photos for an upcoming flight review of the new RV-14 Taildragger from Van's Aircraft. Dye flew along with factory pilot Joe Blank, and they were accompanied by the RV-14 Tricycle gear version which has been flying for three years. Dye briefly flew the new model, and reports that it improves upon the already fine flying qualities of the original, and initial numbers developed during flight testing by Van's show that it might be slightly faster, even though it sports the smaller IO-360 engine instead of the IO-390 mounted on the tricycle gear plane. Continue reading "Kitplanes Flies the New RV-14"


Richard VanGrunsven at AirVenture Monday. That's Ernie Butcher in the background.

Opening day at AirVenture was a day fans of the popular Van’s series of kitbuilt aircraft will remember. In the afternoon airshow, a cavalcade of Van’s aircraft, dating from current designs to the original RV-1 did a fly-by and then taxied in to the main square for a formal ceremony in which the key to the RV-1 was handed over to EAA’s Rod Hightower by Van’s founder Richard “Van” VanGrunsven so that the airplane could be inducted into the EAA Museum. Continue reading "Vanpalooza!"