Electronic Fuel Injection for Lycoming Engines

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e-mail: robert@protekperformance.com

  Experimental Aircraft Assoc.
  Vans Aircraft Home Page
  Van's Air Force - World Wing
  Kitplanes Magazine
  Avery Tools
  Some nice RV pics


 Project started 8/15/01
 First flight 7/02/03
 Flight hours to date - 395
 Last updated 2/07/10

Build an airplane?
What the heck have I gotten myself into?

It's been a long time goal of mine to get a pilot's license. I had my first experiences with small planes about 20 years ago while a friend was building up his flight hours after getting his license. It didn't take much time in the air to know that one day I would get my license as well. It took awhile before that time came, but early 2001 turned out to be the time for me to start training. I took my first official training flight on February 7, 2001 and completed the FAA check ride on July 2 of the same year. It cost a bit more and took a bit more time than I thought it would, but it was well worth the effort and provided a great feeling of accomplishment. But now what do you do with a pilot's license?

Having long been interested in planes, I couldn't help but be curious when one day at a local airport I saw several interesting looking planes lined up on display. They were sporty looking two seat planes with very proud owners planted next to each example. After inquiring about what these planes were, I had my first introduction to the RV-6 and RV-6A aircraft. It was soon apparent that these were not ordinary pilots and these were not ordinary airplanes. These were "homebuilt, experimental aircraft" and their owners had as much pride in their creations as most people have in their live offspring. As one RV-6 builder explained, "you can spend $60,000 building an RV and have a plane that flies like a Porsche or you can spend the same amount on a 25 year old Cessna and have a plane that flies like an old Volkswagen".

It didn't take much more conversation to learn about a magazine called Kitplanes and get directions to the nearest news stand. I immediately subscribed to the magazine and started absorbing information on experimental aircraft. That was in 1999.

The next revelations came quickly. The "experimental aircraft" industry had blossomed in the last few years to fill the void between 30 year old Cessna designs and a dissatisfied pilot community. It became very clear, very quickly that a company in Oregon named Van's Aircraft was at the top of this growing industry and was producing some of the most respected "experimental" aircraft available. I also discovered that "experimental" is an FAA classification of all homebuilt aircraft, not a development status of a given type or design. At this point Van's Aircraft has nearly 3000 of its planes flying with many years and flight hours of successful operation in the air. Perhaps the term "experimental" is not really appropriate anymore?

As an Electrical Engineer and a long term motorsports hobbyist with lots of greasy tools in the garage, and a fresh pilot's license in hand, the notion of building a sport plane seemed to solve several problems. I could have a really fun plane, a fun new hobby, build it myself, spend way too much money, and commit myself to a project that would take at least a year (or more) to complete. I'm not sure those are all good things, but the temptation was irrepressable. Not to mention that Van's had to come out with the RV-7, the successor to the RV-6 that has more power, more speed, more range, more room, and was just too cool. I had little choice but to call up Van's and place an order for a quick build RV-7 kit.

And so I have delved into a very involved project that should be very educational, enjoyable, and provide a very interesting result some time in the future. This web site is being maintained to chronicle the build progress of my RV-7 project and serve as an information resource to others who may be considering the same. Thanks in advance to all the people whom I will no doubt be contacting over the internet with myriad questions during this process.

Robert Paisley

P.S. If you are interested in learning about any type of
"experimental aircraft" the best resource to start with is the
Experimental Aircraft Association (the EAA)