Van's Aircraft RV-9A experimental aircraft kitplane

Mike Hoover's Van's RV-9A
Aircraft Construction Log

Home - Mike Hoover's Van's Aircraft RV-9A Construction Website
Send me an email
My Aviation Blog
Track N194MH with APRS
My YouTube Videos
Savvy Analysis

Aviation Weather Services
NOAA Weather
AOPA Weather
METAR and TAF Retriever

Flight Planning Tools
AOPA Flight Planner
AOPA Flight Risk Calculator

Aircraft Construction
Firewall Forward
Reference Materials
Flight Instruments

Van's Aircraft Builder Discussions & Info
Matronics Wiki-pedia
Van's Air Force
Yahoo RV-7/7A/9/9A  Group

Aircraft Parts Vendors
Aerocraft Parts
Avery Tools
Aircraft Spruce
Brown Tool
B&C Specialty Products
Cleaveland Tools
Dynon Avionics
Genuine Aircraft Hardware Co.
SteinAir, Inc.
TruTrak Autopilot
Wicks Aircraft Supply
Van's Aircraft
Yard Store Aviation Tools

Aviation Memberships
EAA-242 Blog
EAA-242 on Facebook
Experiment Aircraft Association (EAA)

Getting Started
Preparing the old workshop
Tooling up
Sheet Metal Practice
Priming Info
The new workshop
Moved project to hangar

Van's Aircraft Builder Websites
Don Alexander - 9A
Mike Schipper - 9A
Andy Karmy - 9A - 9A
Paul Eastham's - 9A
Bill's Aircraft Factory - 9
Vern Little - 9A

Misc. Fun Aviation Stuff
APRS Aircraft Moving
Amateur Radio (Ham) License Info
A visit from a fellow Van's Aircraft builder
Completed Van's Aircraft 9As - Thanks Clay!
South Carolina Breakfast Club (SCBC) Schedule

Other Aircraft Kit Builders
EAA242'ers Dan & Jerry's
KR2 WannaBee

Utility Scripts
RivetSizer 1.0
Mortgage Calculator

Official time building my Vans RV-9A: 2224.34 hours.


Total Records

Total Hours










Firewall Forward















Reference Materials



Flight Instruments


















Van's Aircraft RV-9A experimental aircraft kitplane

7 most recent log entries:

2014-07-05 Hours: 4 Category: Electrical Manual Ref: ID#: 1197
Had to degrease my flap motor
After 89 tach hours, my flap motor succumbed to the well documented grease problem that has plagued many RV'ers. At least, I expect that is the problem. Ironically, I had just signed off on the annual condition inspection. I cannot image that is anything but coincidence. I was on the ground thankfully when I discovered the issue. I was retracting my flaps while and there was no response when I pushed the switch up (or down). The next day, I tried again and the flaps went up but when I tried to put them down, the switch did nothing. I put a little pressure on one of the flaps as I pushed the switch down and the flaps extended. And went back up when I tried to retracted them. The next day, they worked without a problem. I tried them several different times that day and they worked fine. Geez! I decided not to ignore the problem and did some research on and found the Vans SB regarding the flaky flap issue. I removed the flap from the airplane and disassembled. I found a lot of grease in the motor. It had worked half way through the housing but had not yet gotten to the brushes. I cleaned it up nicely, reassembled and reinstalled. It seems to work fine. We shall see. The hex tool required is a 7/64th. I used laquer thinner sparingly and some q-tips to clean out the grease. I used strands of wire to hold the brushes back while reinstalling the brush horseshoe back onto the armature. Here is the link to Vans SB about the Flaky Flap Motor. Google Pittman 9234S004-R1 Lo-Cog 12VDC motor to find the motor and data sheet.
Plenty of grease half way up the magnets in the housing.
Grease all over the amateur and end cap.
2014-04-14 Hours: 2 Category: Firewall Forward Manual Ref: ID#: 1196
Added air dam to number one cylinder
I had removed the previously riveted air dams from in front of numbers one and two cylinders as they were causing high temps. Number one is coolest by about 20 degrees so I recently added some foil tape and tested. The final amount added resulted in cylinder one matching two and three, with number four now coolest by about six degrees. I made an air dam out of some .040 and attached it to the baffling using three of the rivets holes that existed in the horizontal flange that supports the ramp. I will have to fly again to see if this air dam has the same effect as the foil of the same profile.
The new air dam attached to the baffle in front of cylinder one.
2014-01-18 Hours: 5 Category: Finish Manual Ref: ID#: 1195
Installed upper and lower main gear intersection fairings
Installed the RVBits upper and lower main gear intersection fairings. The lower ones were easy to locate and drill. The upper one fit nicely but finding places to drill for screws is limited. I used trail and error to find the hole under the foreward bottom skin. Missed by just 1/8" on my first try drilling and hit the steel plate that is on the gear leg weldment. Then figured a way to calculate and draw a line on the bottom skin that was approx. 1/4" forward of the edge of the steel plate on the gear leg weldment. It is a line four and a half rivets outboard of the floor stiffener rivet along the span wise row of rivets in the bottom skin and foreword center section flange. I drew a line 45 degrees off that line and this approximates a line about 1/4" forward and parallel to the fore edge of the steel plate on the gear leg weldment. With the intersection fairing held in place, the "sweet spot" for drilling is apparent. The other two screws were, one in the wing root fairing and one aft of the center section under the outboard seat bay. Had to use a rivnut there. I used #6 screws with tinnerman washers for my intersection fairings.
The foreward inboard screw location in the upper intersection fairing.
The lower intersection fairing on the left side installed. Pretty nice fit!
2014-01-13 Hours: 4 Category: Journal Manual Ref: ID#: 1194
Back to work on the wheel pants
First, thanks a bunch Scott for volunteering your afternoon to help me get started on my main wheel pants. I have put this off long enough. We got the wheel pants lined up and clecoed. That was the hard part. Long afternoon!
2013-08-16 Hours: 0 Category: Journal Manual Ref: ID#: 1192
RivetSizer iPhone App is finally a reality!
I finally got my RivetSizer iPhone app up and running. I was approved and went live on the App Store a couple of days ago. It calculates the rivet length as the user inputs metal thicknesses. You can choose which rivet diameter you need too. It is meant for metal airplane builders so RV builders may enjoy it. It is meant to be quick, and I think I have accomplished this. It was a bucket list item to actually learn how to program an iPhone app. Visit the app store and search rivet sizer. Or click this link: RivetSizer on the app store. or visit the blog I set up for it at
2013-04-01 Hours: 0 Category: Journal Manual Ref: ID#: 1193
Photo of my panel
I never uploaded a photo of my finished and flying panel, so here it is!
My finished panel. This was taken in April 1, 2013.
2012-08-26 Hours: 0.3 Category: Journal Manual Ref: ID#: 1190
First flight of N194MH
Had my first flight today! How exciting. The most surreal feeling I have ever had. It was a perfect evening flight with no surprises. Thanks James Clark for handling my transition training. Thanks Ken Jefferson for allowing us to use your RV-9A for the training. Thanks to Tom Roberts and Ken Harrill for all the help these many years during my build. Thanks to all the RV builders and everyone else at KCUB for all your help and encouragement! It was a great day! James agreed to manage the first flight and we made a plan and stuck to it. After several sessions of transition training, the last being a 1.4 hour session today, and afterward we debriefed, James said, "Go get your plane ready." I had no idea that today would be the day. James flew chase with my wife, Pam, aboard his RV-6. Tom handle ground radio; Ken Harrill was there as Technical Advisor; Steve Richardson was kind enough to leave dinner early from across town to hurry to KCUB to be videographer. I look forward to seeing the video. I taxied out to the runway, did my run-up and all the checks, and departed for three laps around the pattern at 1600 ft. No surprise on the take off roll, nor during the flight. The landing was smooth, perhaps one of my best, and I felt no shimmy. The landing roll was smooth. Taxied back to the hangar and shut 4MH down. Pam brought out the champagne and we passed the bottle around to celebrate one of the greatest days of my life. Thanks to everyone who was there!
Run-up prior to first flight. Adrenaline was flowing!
First flight of N194MH in the evening of Sunday, August 26, 2012.
James and I celebrating with a bottle of bubbly. Thanks James!

12 Long, Long, Long Years Ago Today:

2006-02-23 Hours: 3.5 Category: Fuselage Manual Ref: 8-15 ID#: 865
Finished installing the flap pushrods
Got to work on the left side flap pushrod installation. I traced the holes from the right side and marked the left side to make it easier once I had the initial 1/2" holes drilled. Don't forget to reverse the pattern! This worked really well. Got the notch cut and ran of the flaps up and down a zillion times to get them right. I had some scraping as the flaps retracted and the rod end bearing jamb nut entered the fuse. The lower jamb nut was hitting the fuse skin. Then I realized that I had not put the washers on the rod end bearing that attaches to the flap. Once the washers were installed the flaps retracted cleanly. Don't know how long the flap motor will last. I sure as heck gave it a workout today! I ended up cutting the VA-256 flap rods to 5.25" like Mike Schipper did and this worked great. With the flap weldment in the full retracted position, you push the flap up as far as it will go, then insert the bolt to connect the rod end bearing to the flap weldment clevis end. The flap pushrod is already connected to the flap itself before doing this. This sets the travel limit automatically. If the flap weldment is in the flaps up position and the flap is in its fully retracted position, then the flap pushrod must be adjusted to fit. That's all there is to it! Hope this made sense - I'm tired. Buenos noches!
My temporary switch panel to make it easy to operate the flap motor.
I traced the right side hole and used the REVERSED pattern on the left side.
The left flap pushrod installed. Do not forget the washers!

13 Long, Long, Long Years Ago Today:

2005-02-23 Hours: 0.75 Category: Fuselage Manual Ref: 8-2 ID#: 583
Worked on the control column assembly on the aft 904 bulkhead
Before calling it a night, I tinker with the WD-610 control column assembly a little bit. I had trouble early with the WD-611 right control binding once bolted onto the control column. Vans sent me another one, so I reamed the new brass bushing and sized it to fit. Still binding when the AN4-27 bolt is tightened, so I will work on this so more tomorrow.

2005-02-23 Hours: 1.667 Category: Fuselage Manual Ref: 8-3 ID#: 582
Assembled the F-706 bulkhead
Riveted the F-703 reinforcing plate and the F-729 bellcrank rib assembly to the 706B lower bulkhead. Clecoed the 728 assembly to the lower assembly then riveted on the F-706A left and right bulkheads to the lower assembly.
The lower 706B bulkhead with the 703 plate and 729A rib riveted; 728A clecoed.
Close up of the busy area as shown in Detail A, DWG 26.
The 706 bulkhead riveted and clecoed per plans.

2005-02-23 Hours: 5.25 Category: Fuselage Manual Ref: 8-2 ID#: 581
Assembled the F-705 bulkhead
Riveted the entire F-705 bulkhead together. Started with the F-705F upper assembly. Had to countersink the left and right 705K plates to accept the rivets flush head on top. Then I dimpled the 705D bulkhead side channels for the platenuts and riveted them on. Then riveted on the 705E side doublers. Next came the 705A rear spar attach bulkhead assembly. Riveted on the 705B center bar in 11 places to the 705A bulkhead. Then riveted the 705D assemblies to the 705A rear spar bulkhead. Riveted on the F-605C doublers. Next came riveting the 705F channel assembly to the 705D's. I then bolted on the seat belt anchors and the 705H spacers. Lastly, I marked and drilled the F-661EF flap bearing blocks and fitted them to the 705D side channels. I marked the blocks with a hole center line, then marked the top hole position and drilled it on the drill press with a #10 drill. Then I fitted the blocks to the 705D's and positioned and spot drilled for the second hole with the #12 drill. I finished drilling out the second bear holes completely on the drill press with a #10 drill. The "Main Squeeze" certainly earned her keep today with all the 1/8" rivets!
End view of the F-705F channel with shims, plates, and angles installed.
Riveting the F-705D side channed to the 705E doubler. "Main Squeeze" is great!
The F-705 bulkhead completed.

Copyright 2003 - 2018 Mike Hoover. All rights reserved.