Buying a Used RV

From Matronics

The following tips were posted on the Matronics RV List.

General Strategies

  • Ask the owner/builder to send you photos of the "worst areas" of the aircraft
  • Have someone who built one go with you to inspect it. Ideally, the one they built should also be available to you to inspect, for comparison.
  • Read "AC 43.13-1B Acceptable Methods, Techniques, and Practices, Aircraft Inspection and Repair."

Specific Items to Check

  • Check the condition of the cowl attachment features. Are there any broken eyelets, fasteners with elongated holes, etc?
  • Are there wrinkles in the firewall? (Suggests hard landings.)
  • Are the weldments behind the firewall the later (thicker) versions? Photos and dimensions of both versions would be useful.
  • Look for asymmeterical main gear, suggesting that one may have been bent.
  • Check for cracks around rivets in the elevators and rudder.
  • Was the rudder constructed with 0.016" or 0.20" skin?
  • Does the aircraft have the long or short gear? Longer is newer.
  • Have the Vans Service bulletins been complied with?
  • Slosh used to seal fuel tanks should be avoided or inspected carefully if used (this has been know to flake off and block fuel delivery in extreme cases.