My Flying RV7A Page 2007
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Replacing Internal Garmin GPS Battery

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 My 2018 Flying Adventures

2018 - Now with the autopilot installed, the longer trips will be easier. I'm hoping to make it to Sun-n-Fun - Lakeland, FL, back up to Belfast, ME and Petit Jean, AR this year.

Jan. 2018
Saturday Jan.6, It's a cold day and I didn't get up early for breakfast but wanted to fly somewhere. Warmed the engine up for an hour and a half. I have a small electric heater with a duct that directs the heat up and into the exhaust area. I also have foam plugs that fit into the cowl holes. This works very well. The only bad part is having to get to the airport and hour before departure. I didn't really know where I was going to go. Right after takeoff I decided to head up to Skylane airstrip just west of Evansville, IN, I wasn't sure if anyone would be around. It was a beautiful day to fly. The approach into Skylane is very interesting. You have to descend below KEVV airspace and enter a keyhole from the west. That puts you on a right base, you can't really see the runway until your about to turn final on your GPS. 1000' turning final over buildings to a grass strip that you just saw a few seconds ago. After landing I saw a buddy look out the door of the club house. Inside there was a fire going a couple guys warming up near it, I pulled up a chair and joined them. Now this is a club house! I hung around for a while and checked out a few projects. On the way home I checked out my slip-on sunglasses to see if they still fit my new glasses, yep! I know sexy also :-) Did this while my new autopilot did the flying, right on course plus or minus 10' of set altitude, love it! Check out that indicated airspeed 182 mph 2450 on the RPM and OAT 11°.

My hangar doors do not get any sun, so it makes it pretty hard to get the doors open until all the ice is gone. Seems every year there is a good fly day a few days before all the ice is gone. I spent over an hour braking up the ice and clearing the tracks. By the end of the next day all the ice had melted.


Flew up to Rough River State Park and got a few neat looking pictures


Feb. 2018
Condition Inspection time. This year I decided to replace my intake couplings and oil drain back hoses. Everything else is just the normal stuff, replacing the auto spark plugs, cleaning and packing brakes, bleeding brakes.


I hadn't flown much lately because it's been raining a lot. On Sunday my wife went to a luncheon with friends so I wanted to fly somewhere to eat. Didn't know where I was going for sure until after I took off. I ended up going to French Lick, IN. I knew they had a shuttle that would pick me up at the airport and take me to the restaurant area. After arriving at the airport I found a courtesy car with the keys in it and a card with the airport managers phone number. I called to make sure it was ok to use the car to drive into town and back. I found a nice sports pub and went inside for lunch. Had a great lunch and then went across the street to check out a gift shop. This is a very nice place to visit. There is a casino which has a nice schedule of well know performers and there are two very nice and big hotels (French Lick Springs Hotel and West Baden Springs Hotel) both which have very interesting history. The strange part is that this area seems to be out in the middle of nowhere, not near any big cities. After putting a couple gallons of gas in the courtesy car I headed back the airport and took off. I flew a little to the northeast to fly over Paoli Peaks ski resort, they had man made snow on the slopes and people where skiing the slopes. Then I headed south west and flew over Saint Meinrad Seminary and then on to Holiday World amusement park in Santa Claus, IN, it was all closed up awaiting the warm weather. Good fly day!


Mar. 2018
The Tennessee Pilot group planned a fly out to Knoxville for lunch so I talked my buddies into flying allow with me and my granddaughter Lainey. We flew into the downtown island airport and ate lunch at Calhoun's.

Click on picture to see more pics of the trip

Apr. 2018
I decided to install an oil pan heater to be able to plug it in and warm the oil when it's cold. My buddy David brought me a timer to plug it into so I can set the time and date for the outlet to turn on, that way I can plug it in a day or more before a flight and it will turn on automatically and when I get to the hangar to fly the oil will already be warm. This will be real helpful on the Saturday morning breakfast runs.

Time for Sun N Fun. I would have taken Lexie or Lainey but they didn't need to miss any days from school. So my buddy Sam Hodges was planning to go and his wife couldn't go, so we both where going to have empty passenger seats. I flew over to his field to talk about the trip and we decided to just fly down together in my plane. This was the Sunday before the Wednesday departure date. On the way home my auto pilot kicked off and couple times and I started getting Red X's on my G3X screens. I went up the next couple days to check it out some more. I was not sure what was causing it and I went back and reseated all the electrical plugs but that did not help. I knew the weather was suppose to be good and my Dynon 10a backup PFD was working fine and my backup 510 gps was working ok as well. So off went went to SnF with my G3X system messing up. I was really looking forward to flying this trip with the autopilot working. Well it was intermittent all the way there and back. at least I got the traffic working before the arrival and before we took off, so we did have a good view of traffic when we needed it most. We had a good time at SnF and we met up with another buddy Paul Redding and when we left we flew over to Cedar Key for lunch and Paul followed us.

Here is a link to the pictures:

The weekend after SnF the Tennessee Pilot had a fly out planned to go to Write Patterson Air Force Museum in Dayton, OH. So my granddaughter Lainey and I met them there and went to the museum. I have gone to the museum a number of times when I young and lived in Ohio. Always a neat museum to go to.

Here is the link to the pictures:

When we got back I started troubleshooting my G3X system. Garmin said that they have had some problems with the GPS20a's that did not have a level 1 mode and mine did not so they sent me a new one to see if that would fix it. I swapped it out but that did not fix it. On the ground the system worked but when I would take off the red X's would start flashing. I checked my status page and was getting 100% can bus failures, while flying. So their is a bad canbus connection somewhere and it was not going to be easy to find it. I was scheduled to be away with work for a week and home for a weekend then away for two weeks. All this while the plane was left apart. I did manage to get some troubleshooting done during the weekend home. I isolated the ADAHARS and the two screen from the rest of the system with a new canbus and found that all of that worked fine. Next will be to add the GPS20a to the system to see what happens. Got to wait till I get back home middle of May to do that.

May-July 2018
Got to finish the trouble shooting on my G3X canbus and found that once I got everything hooked back up it all worked fine. So I had a bad solder sleeve on the first section of the canbus that I removed. Find a bad connection on the Garmin canbus is not an easy task. My buddy had the same type of thing happen to him and his wiring harness was done by SteinAir so it can happen no matter who makes the harness.

Another buddy of mine bought a Garmin 660 GPS and found that there was a trade-in program going on. I found that I could trade my 510 in for a good discount on a 660. Done deal. Swapped my AirGizmo mount and my bare wire hareness and popped the 660 into the panel. It bluetooths to the GDL39R and gets traffic and weather on it also. The wiring harness connects to the Dynon D10A. Those two items have their own backup batteries and are the backup to my G3X system.

Sam and I decided to fly to Oshkosh this year. Sam flew his plane there last year and had a good feel for the approach. He said he would just fly up with me. This would be the first time for me in my RV, I flew my Rans S12 there once but I landed it on the ultralight strip and that was easier. The weather looked good and I wasn't away with work like most years. I watched and listened to the live Fisk approach on YouTube Sunday and Monday. the weather was bad Saturday and Sunday morning so the traffic on Sun. afternoon and Mon. morning was ridiculous. By lunch time Mon. everything was back to normal, Tuesday was normal also. Wednesday would be even better. We arrived around 10am Wed. and stayed until our Saturday morning departure. Our buddy Paul Reding showed up a couple hours after we arrived Wed. and took off with us Sat. morning also we agreed to meet at C16 just north-east of Champaign, IL. I had previously looked for a good place to stop for lunch and found the Black Dog Smoke and Ale House was not real far from the airport and they had Uber in the area. We refueled and headed to the Dog House. It was great, could not have been any better. If your ever in that area you've got to stop and try it.

Here is the link to the pictures:

Aug. 2018
My wife had an appointment in St. Louis and the weather was great so we went in the plane, hour and a half, and had a short Uber ride to the appt.. Right across the street was HuHot. It is a great Mongolian grill restaurant. I've eaten at one in Colorado Springs when out there with work. After lunch Marsha called her brother in Kansa City to see if him and his wife was up for company, he said sure, so another hour and a half and we were in Kansas! That was the furthest west we had taken the plane so far. We stayed a couple days and then headed home 2.8 hour flight, used autopilot the whole trip. It is great for a trip like this.

Sept. 2018
We had planned to attend the Belfast Fly-in again this year but the weather did not look favorable, so we decided to not take the chance. I was hoping the weather would be good enough to fly up to Bowling Green, OH my hometown. I was born there 1961 and we moved to Kentucky in 1977.  The night before our planned departure it did not look like the cloud coverage was going to let it happen. The next morning it looked like we could make it in by early afternoon, so we decided to go. We had a great flight at 5500 ft all the way up, as we approached Lima, OH which was only about 15-20 min. flight short of Bowling Green the cloud coverage below us was closing up. I decided to descend and fly the rest of the way below the clouds. That didn’t work very well. We had to down to about 1500 ft and when we got down to that level we found towers that were higher than us. My GPS warned us about them before we actually saw them. I headed west where there was less towers but then we saw a wall of clouds all the way to the ground and had turn back to the east and head for Lima, OH. We landed at Lima and ended up waiting for about an hour while I checked the weather situation out. There were holes all around us so I call the FBO at Bowling Green to see if they had holes around the airport there, they said yes. Ok, we can do this. We took off climbed to 5500 flew for about 15 mins descended though some holes and landed in Bowling Green. As time passed it got better as it was predicted to do. We borrowed the courtesy car and explored Bowling Green for about 4 hours. That was just enough time for me to see most everything that I wanted to see. We had a nice lunch at a nice little pub on Main Street. It was amazing seeing things that I hadn’t seen in over 35 yrs. There where places that hadn’t changed much at all and other places that have been torn down and parks have taken their place. I really enjoyed this trip and hope to do it again someday. It was about a 2 hr 20 min flight rather than the 8 hr drive. We flew up, explored, and flew back it the time it would have taken to drive up.

This was our house in Boling Green, OH before we moved to Kentucky

This is were we went to the doctors office when we were kids

End of September was the French Lick, IN Airport Fish Fry. The weather was great and so was the fish. I got a few pictures. I failed to get many pictures of the planes that flew in, I was too busy eating and talking about flying. My wife got sick a couple days a ge and didn't get to go. My buddy David had a few things apart on his plane so he flew with me there. It was his first time to French Lick so after we ate we borrowed the courtesy car and I gave he the quick tour of the town of French Lick and West Baden. It is a very neat place to visit.
Thank you guys for doing this it was a very good turn out and very good food!

Here are some pictures of the West Baden Hotel - a lot of history here
Read all about it:


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