- Aircraft History, Specification and Information -
Van's Aircraft RV-6 & RV-6A
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2002 Van's Aircraft RV-6A
C-GJTY (sn 24590)
Photo taken May 24, 2010
Penticton, BC - Canada (YYF / CYYF)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6 - C-GLVW - Homebuilt Aircraft
2003 Van's Aircraft RV-6
C-GLVW (sn 24928)
Photo taken June 19, 2005
Vernon Airport, BC Canada (CYVK)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6A - C-GLVW - Single Engine Homebuilt Airplane
2003 Van's Aircraft RV-6A
C-GLVW (sn 24928)
Photograph taken August 19, 2006
Oliver, BC Canada (CAU3)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6 - N12WA - Tail Wheel Kitplane
1994 Van's Aircraft RV-6
N12WA (sn 21712)
Picture taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2006
Arlington, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6 - N456MD - Homebuilt Airplane
1996 Van's Aircraft RV-6
N456MD (sn 20107)
Photo taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2007
Arlington, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6A - N79WH - Kit Plane - Single Engine Homebuilt Aircraft
1998 Van's Aircraft RV-6A
N79WH (sn 21611)
Photo taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2006
Arlington, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6A - N649TG - Nose-Wheel Kitplane
2004 Van's Aircraft RV-6A
N649TG (sn 21048)
Image taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2007
Arlington, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6 - N113JW - Single Engine Homebuilt Airplane
2004 Van's Aircraft RV-6
N113JW (sn RV623839)
Photo taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2006
Arlington, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6 - N24CM - Single Engine Kit Airplane
1994 Van's Aircraft RV-6
N24CM (sn 20835)
Photo taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2006
Arlington, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6 - N16RN - Single Engine Homebuilt Experimental Aircraft
2000 Van's Aircraft RV-6 N16RN (sn 24755) Image taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2006 Arlington, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6A N38155 Homebuilt Airplane
1997 Van's Aircraft RV-6A
N38155 (sn 001)
Photo taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2006
Arlington Airport, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
Van's Aircraft RV-6A - N114RT - Single Engine Homebuilt Airplane
2001 Van's Aircraft RV-6A
N114RT (sn 60046)
Picture taken at Arlington Northwest EAA Fly-In July 2007
Arlington, WA USA (KAWO)
Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler

The Van's RV-6 and RV-6A are two-seat, single-engine, low-wing homebuilt airplanes sold in kit form by Van's Aircraft. The RV-6 is the tail-wheel equipped version while the RV-6A features a nose-wheel. The RV-6 was the first aircraft in the popular Van’s RV series to feature side-by-side seating and the first to offer a nosewheel option. It was first flown in 1985. Over 2000 kits have been completed and flown.

The RV-6 kit has been superseded by the similar, but improved, RV-7. Kit components are still available to allow builders to complete RV-6s under construction, but no new complete kits are available.

Development

Van’s Aircraft designer, Richard VanGrunsven, designed the RV-6 series as a two seat side-by-side development of the RV-4, which was itself a development of the single seat RV-3.

Market demand motivated VanGrunsven to design the RV-6 and offer it as an optional nosewheel design. The original two seater RV-4 has been a remarkable success, but the tandem seating configuration was not considered ideal by many potential owners as it leaves the passenger isolated in the back seat. Many female spouses of builders especially favoured the side-by-side configuration over the tandem arrangement.

VanGrunsven worked diligently to create a side-by-side design with a generous 43 inch wide cockpit that did not sacrifice the RV-4’s handling, STOL performance and especially its high cruise speed. In the end the RV-6 prototype produced cruise speeds that are only 3 mph slower that the RV-4 with the same engine.

The first RV-6s had a forward hinged canopy design. This was a simple one-piece arrangement, but it made taxiing the aircraft with the canopy open more difficult. Later kits had the option of a rearward sliding canopy that could more easily provide ventilation on the ground.

The RV-6A version features tubular steel landing gear with the nosewheel mounting tube welded to the engine mount. The nosewheel is free castering and the aircraft is steered with differential braking. The brakes are mounted conventionally on the rudder pedal toes.

Nigerian Air Force RV-6A Air Beetle

The RV-6 has a rare distinction in the world of kit built aircraft - it is used as a military training aircraft. Searching for a suitable trainer that could be assembled in Nigeria using local labour, the government of that country settled on the RV-6A. Van's produced 60 kits to fulfill the order and these were assembled in Nigeria, test flown and entered service with the Nigerian Air Force in 1989 as elementary training aircraft under the name "Air Beetle". The air training school is based at Kaduna, Nigeria. The only other amateur aircraft to have this distinction is the Pazmany PL-1, which was built as a trainer for Taiwan's Air Force in the 1970s.

Aircraft Type Club

The RV-6 and RV-6A have a very active aircraft type club Van's Air Force that provides support for owners and pilots of these types.

AVA-202

A modified version of the RV-6A is manufactured in Iran by Aviation Industries of Iran as the AVA-202. First flown in 1997, the main change from the RV-6A is a greater wingspan.

Specifications (RV-6) (Specifications are given for 180HP, O-360 configuration)

General characteristics
Crew: one pilot
Capacity: one passenger
Length: 20 ft 2 in (6.21 m)
Wingspan: 23 ft 0 in (7.10 m)
Height: 5 ft 3 in (1.62 m)
Wing area: 110 ft² (10.2 m²)
Empty weight: 965 lb (437 kg)
Loaded weight: 1,600 lb (724 kg)
Max takeoff weight: 1,600lb (724kg)
Powerplant: 1× Lycoming O-320 or Lycoming O-360 fixed pitch or constant speed, 150-180hp (112-134 kW)

Performance
Never exceed speed: mph (km/h)
Maximum speed: 210 mph at sea level (340 km/h)
Range: 720 statute miles at cruise 75% power at 8,000 ft (1,166 km at cruise 75% power at 2,500 m)
Service ceiling: 25,700 ft (7,900 m)
Rate of climb: 1,790 ft/min (9.2 m/s)
Wing loading: 14.5 lb/ft² (73 kg/m²)

Last updated May 28, 2010
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Van's Aircraft RV-6".
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