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Deans Web Site

Dean Eiland
Aubrey, TX - USA
Van's Aircraft, Inc. - RV-9
Lycoming - IO-360
Whirl Wind - 200-RV - Fixed
Total Build Time:
342 Hours

It has been a long time since I updated this page. My RV-9 first flew in September 2014 and I now have about 200 hours on her. Above is a "finished" picture.

Email if you have any questions.

Welcome to my experimental aircraft web site. I am building an RV-9 designed by Van Aircraft, Inc. I will be updating this web site with more information ever few days so please check back from time to time.

Not the normal build, I am tempted to call my plane the “Phoenix” because it is in part the resurrection of an RV-7A that went down in 2007. I am using the instrument panel, engine and a few other odds parts off the donor plane.

My Story

I soloed in college but gave it up before I got my license. At the time I decided I would never own a plane and therefore I would never stay proficient. So it would be best to quit.

My older brother, Eddie, however went on to get his ticket. I watched for years as my brother would take to the skies.

Then Eddie built a homebuilt. Pretty impressive. Then he built his second homebuilt a Thorp T-18. The T-18 is not dissimilar to the RV I am building except it is 100% plan built, which makes it even more impressive. But it took him 10 years to build. No way could I do that, I just didn’t have that much time and patience.

That brings us to AirVenture 2007. I had never been to Oshkosh (AirVenture) but I had heard rumors and it sounded like something I would like. So in 2007 Eddie, his son, my son and I loaded up the truck and headed north. WOW, it was airplane overload and then some. But what impressed me most was the Van’s Aircraft. Very impressive looking and with the quick build kit, I felt like it was a plane was within my grasp.

The Donor Plane

At some point after AirVenture 2007 someone hooked me up with AIG Aviation, Inc. (an aircraft insurance company) web site where planes that have gone down (wrecked and insured by AIG) and now are owned by the insurance company, are auctioned off. I thought maybe I could pick up something “slightly bent” that I could repair and start flying.

In the process of looking at bent planes I ran across this RV-7A that had a great instrument panel and intriguing engine with only 62 hours on it. The RV-7A and RV-9 have the same basic fuselage so the instrument panel from this plane would fit in my RV-9. And what an instrument panel! It has a complete glass panel with three GRT screens, Garmin GTX330 & SL30, Turtrak auto pilot, CD player, microwave oven and more options, too many to list.

The plane was up for auction once, and then pulled. I waited 6 months for the plane to actually reach the gavel point. Interesting enough on the way to AirVenture 2008 I called AIG and was informed I was the owner of a bent RV.

The salvage company was located just outside of St Louis so we loaded up the truck and headed north. You can see some of the original pictures on my site.

My RV-9

Deciding which model RV to build was fairly easy. I am effectively a no-time pilot and the RV-9 is sometimes referred to as “the trainer”. It is still fast, stable and a great, efficient cross country plane.

The first part of building an RV is the tail section or empennage. I ordered my empennage kit on June 26, 2008. As you work it is really cool to see these pieces of aluminum come together to form parts of an airplane.

The winter of 2009 I saw a posting for an RV-9 quick build kit with sliding canopy at a good price. So I nabbed it. Only problem was it was located in Noelville, Canada about 500 miles north of Toronto (I am in Texas). Well my father-in-law kind of likes to travel, so we loaded up the truck and headed north, to Canada. We drove a total of 3,333 miles in about 66 hours. A great trip and a lot of great memories. So now I have the quick build kit which includes the wing and fuselage, and from the donor plane the engine and instruments. She is coming together.

I am anticipating completion of this project, or at least to the test flight stage, sometime in 2011 (OK well maybe 2014). Thanks for looking at my site and reading my story.

One more important thing, I would like to include a credits section to this note. Thanks to my very wonderful and supportive wife for letting me do this project and to my brother for answering all the telephone calls with dumb questions.

Keep safe,

Recent Activity
 Date Hours Work Log Summary Details
In The Air

First Flight Today

At The Airport

Got It There

The Big Move

Finishing Up Canopy


Canopy Looking Better

More Canopy

I Received The Finish Kit Package From Van’s Today

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