I saw that there was a listing today on eBay for an RV-10 that has a 600hp Corvette LS7 engine shoehorned into it. I went and saw the listing. What can I say. If this person has designed the firewall forward system in the same fashion as he has built the airframe then I hope he never sells the thing. Especially to someone who doesn’t know all of the facts. Someone bedazzled by the sexiness of having the Corvette emblem attached to the aircraft.
You can go to the listing here and have a look for yourself. I don’t know about you but I don’t think that the side skins of the RV-10 are attached with 1/8″ rivets. All of those clecos are supposed to be silver aren’t they? There’s a whole lot of head scratching going on here!!
I personally have looked long and hard into the Corvette conversion and have had extensive conversations with experts in the field. I even flew out to meet Jack Kane who owns EPI Inc. in Washington state. We looked at the many many many variables in converting an automotive engine to aircraft use and simply couldn’t make the math work out without making a whole slew of compromises. Jack is a pretty smart cookie with the degrees and experience to back up his opinions.
I tucked my tail between my legs and headed home. I will put it very simply. There are precious few alternatives currently available for the person building an RV-10 when it comes to an alternative to the venerable Lycosaurus. This is not to say that there aren’t some exiting developments in the works.
I am working on an engine project of my very own. One that uses a proprietary compressor/effector technology that has been developed by a company in Texas. It will use the Brayton cycle which is the same cycle used in turbine engines but it will use a different and more efficient compressor and effector than the axial turbines used today.
My primary goal is to have the new engine fit into the space that existing Lycoming takes up. No new cowl, no new engine mount. It will directly replace the Lycoming.
It will be able to burn almost any type of fuel. Gasolines, naptha, diesels, kerosenes and bio-fuels. The problem for me is that it is going to take a pretty big chunk of cash to make it happen.
Anyway, I digress. It is a wonderful thing that we can invent and implement these inventions within the framework of the experimental category. It is very important though that we do things in the safest and most professional way so that those who are building the plan-jane version are not adversely affected by the insurance industry and the relentless pursuit of the ambulance chasing lawyers.
Thanks for tuning in. Link to me if you can.