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REFLECTOR: First Flight - 642PT

After 3 years, we finally had our first flight in our Velocity Standard
RG Elite.  We elected to follow the adage of "if you have more hours
building, than flying  - get a test pilot".  Tom Jeter was kind enough
volunteer for the task (for a very reasonable fee).

Tom took about 3 hours to pre-flight the aircraft - it was great to see
another set of eyes go over the plane.  He suggested a few items but
nothing that was going to deter him from flying.

Tom took off from Deer Valley Airport in Phoenix, AZ at about 4 pm -
yes, the hottest part of the day - about 107 degrees.  We got concerned
since Tom was forced to stay on the ground for longer than we wanted
while the world seemed to want to land.  The airport had been quiet for
at least 45 minutes before he took off but as soon as he started to taxi
- the airport came to life.

Tom started the take off roll, rotated and then retracted the gear!!!
All seemed to be going smoothly except for the concern about high engine
temps.  We monitored Tom's communications with the tower and wre
expecting him to make a circuit and then come back in because of engine
temps.  Tom then left for a while and then came back toward the field.
We figured (and later found out we were correct) that Tom decided to see
if he could get the high engine temps under control - lo and behold he
did.  The highest he saw while, as he put it, pointing the nose down and
letting the air flow was at about 390 degrees.  We felt the Swing's
plenum system justified itself at that point - we are running a 200 hp
IO 360.

After a fly by  - Tom asked the Tower to check that the gear and all
doors were up and closed - Tom went away for a while and then came back
to a touch and go - Boy is that a pretty sight!!!!  He then returned for
a full stop landing.

The flight info he gave us were (this is based on memory- the info is at
the airport):

Engine CHTs      - no more than 390 degrees
Climb                 - 2000 fpm (after the touch and go)
Flight Character. - No adverse flight characteristics-
                             A dream to fly- he said
                             (Yes, we did hire him so we have to take it
with a grain of  salt)
Speed                - He ran at about 130 kts at about 2450 RPM

Now for the bad news - we discovered we have a problem with our retract
system.  The co-pilot  main gear socket became cracked and the pilot
side is stressed.  We need to repair that before we go up again.  So
regretfully we let Tom go home before he was able to do the high
performance test.  We'll need a couple of days to fix it and didn't want
to waste his time.  After discussions with Scott Swing, we discovered we
had just glassed in our sockets instead of taping them to the legs and
lowering the gear and the sockets (with micro in place) in place.  So
we'll redo the sockets, and get ready to go again.

Even with the sockets, it's a wonderful feeling to know that it flys and
flys well.  We're looking forward to more flight time in the near

Pete and Toni