Cool Mods!  (please contribute cool stuff you find!)

Top 10 "Must-Fix" items for RV-10 Builders
Hat Shelf
Overhead Ventilation, Lighting, and DVD Console
Solving the "Tunnel Heat Problem"
Custom Heat Boxes
Seat Adjustment Lever
Parking Brake
Rudder Trim
Elevator Trim Cable Attach Brackets
Wheel Fairings Done with Class
RV-10 Axle Extension Upgrade

Dan Lloyd's Dual-Battery Box Modification
Tim's PC925 Battery Box Modification
Tim's Aux Battery Pack
How LoPresti improves cooling and speed with their Cowls
Safety-Trim Dual-Speed Trim Controller with Runaway Prevention
Wheel Fairing Bracket Attach Spacers
Better Oil Cooler and Cooler Control
Better Tires and Tubes

Top 10 "Must-Fix" items for RV-10 Builders
Check out my list of items that EVERY RV-10 builder should fix or be aware of.
CLICK HERE for the link

A Hat shelf  - Thanks Michael S.!
Mark Phillips did this and it looks very neat.

Overhead Ventilation, Lighting, and DVD console
Check out this great console - By Accuracy Avionics
Overhead Console
Overhead Vent Inlet

Solving the "Tunnel Heat Problem"
A write up I did to help you guys figure this out

Custom Heat Boxes
Paul Grimstad gave this link to the company that makes some of Van's SCAT fittings.  They do custom work and may be able to provide you with special parts as you try out new ideas.

--- More from Chris Hukill  ---
I concur completely that Don at Aviacomp is the man to see about anything for your heating system. At my request, he redesigned the T that goes in the forward tunnel to direct the heat to the forward footwell areas, to include a selector valve. It is a drop in replacement for the original, and with the use of a cable, I can now mix the forward heat to either side, a must have requirement for my cold blooded other half, flying partner. It was a true pleasure working with Don on this very simple, yet useful mod, that Vans should offer in their accessory catalog. If you need to see a picture, email me

Seat Adjustment Lever - Thanks Jim Wade
The seat adjustment lever is in an inconvenient place in the RV-10.  If you adjust yours a lot, you may find this mod useful.
This seat adjustment lever is great. Just bought if from Greg, I was to busy trying to finish to build one myself. His is well made and a good design. So much better that having to reach beside the seat and pull the lever. Here is his website, check it out for yourself.

Parking Brake - Thanks Zack and Albert
Check this link for a good parking brake install

Rudder Trim
Check this link for Vic Syracuse's Rudder Trim mod - great stuff!
Check this link for Tim's write-up and shameless copy of Vic's Rudder Trim
Check this link for Tim's write-up of the Safety-Trim system controlling the rudder and Aileron Trim
Check this link for some photos and info on a Rudder-Pedal based Vernier rudder trim Don Orrick Made

Elevator Trim Cable Attach Brackets
Whatever you do, you should probably not leave your Elevator Trim attach brackets as-is.   These are p/n WD-415.
There have already been cases of breakage both during construction, and during flight.  The original ones from the factory were not consistently made with stainless material, and the welding is not thorough enough to ensure safety.  There are a few good ways to deal with this.
Check this link for more.

Wheel Fairings Done with Class!
Check this link for photos of a couple of RV-10's with above-average wheel fairing construction.  In one case, they're made slightly different than the plans show, but they look much better.

RV-10 Axle Extension Upgrade
Here's my write-up of this issue and some possible fixes.   The RV-10 has had a small handful of cases of the extension stem that holds the outer side of the wheel fairing breaking and damaging the fairing.  It's a worthy item to upgrade and fix, and for those who are currently building it's a definite "should highly consider" modification.

Dan Lloyd's Dual-Battery Battery Box Modification
For those of you wanting dual main batteries in your RV-10, you'll definitely want to see THIS.
Here's another pic from Bob Condrey of his dual batteries.

Tim's PC925 Battery Box
Here's a page showing my PC925 Battery Box for the RV-10.  It's just a couple extra pieces of angle used to widen the existing tray.  Simple and sweet.

Tim's Aux Battery Pack
Finding a good place for an Aux Battery can be tough, but I found a great spot using some completely wasted space. It uses four 6V batteries, 2 in series, and then those pairs in parallel, to provide a good amount of AH of backup.  It runs a long time, and the best part is it has a negligible effect on your CG, which is an important part of the install.
Follow this link to a page with photos.

How LoPresti improves cooling and speed with their Cowls
These are notes taken as presented at a LoPresti Seminar by John Cox explaining how and why cowls can be improved.

Safety-Trim Dual-Speed Trim Controller with Runaway Prevention
Not sure if this is a "Mod" or an "Accessory", but it's something that I believe should be standard on all RV-10 kits.  Check out the write-up from my install.

Wheel Fairing Bracket Attach Spacers
With the current problems surrounding the wheel fairing attach brackets and the spacers made to hold them on, vendors have started offering solutions. Here is the first.
There are now places for a builder to actually BUY the parts to fix this problem.  First to market was with the spacers pictured below.  These are a one-piece aluminum spacer that provides a lot more surface area against the aluminum bracket.  It fits right in and should provide a good long-lasting fix. is the producer of probably the most successful door latch replacement available for the RV-10.
There is also work underway by which should be producing something soon as well.  They produce a variety of parts including the axle extensions very similar to the ones I had helped get made many years ago.

Better Oil Cooler and Cooler Control
I recently installed the Airflow Systems 2006X oil cooler, which may be a better cooler...I'll know more after my next trip.  At the same time I installed the oil cooler control valve by
For my write-up Click HERE (or click the image)

Better Tires and Tubes
If you're still building, save yourself some inevitible or at least likely frustrations and just skip from your order, the standard Front Aluminum Nosewheel, the Front Tube, and the Main Tubes, and the front axle.  See above, and THIS WRITEUP for the information on the new Matco axle, and also information on the nosewheel.  Basically, just to save inventory hassles, Van's sells us the WRONG nosewheel for the tire that we use, they sell the Matco NW501.25, which will in many cases, have the valve stem stick out too far, and hit the fork on rotation.  They will just tell you to leave the valve cap off, allowing dirt and grime to get into the valve.   The PROPER Wheel is the NW511.25.  Yes, that is right...they sell you the WRONG wheel, on purpose, to save them headaches.  You can just order the WHLNW511.25 from Matco and skip the other one in your kit...and buy the Matco Axle at the same time, because the standard Van's axle is going to cause you headaches in the long run too.  Then, skip the tube that comes with the kit too....get your tubes for all tires from Desser Tire.  What you want for the front is the 500-5 "Leakguard" Butyl Tube with the TR-67 Valve.   So with your new nosewheel, new leakguard tube, and new axle, your nosewheel will be complete and give you hundreds of hours of trouble free service.

Now for the mains...  Personally, especially after switching to the Desser Leakguard tube for the mains (15/600-6 size), I haven't had interference issues on the mains.  However, I've heard from a couple builders who have...the valve cap comes dangerously close to the cotter pin on the nut used to hold the wheel on.  Although I've only used the Van's tube, and the Desser Leakguard tubes, I think the clearance was better with the Leakguards.  But, there is a better way.  What you want is the Desser 15/600-6 "Leakguard" Butyl Tube with the "New Easy Valve".  Once you switch to the Leakguards, you'll be adding air far less often, and the "New Easy Valve" will eliminate any possibility of interference issues for you.  So skip the tubes on your kit order also.  Personally, I've also found that the Desser 15/600-6 "High Performance Retreads" gave better tire life at a low cost, too, so if it were me building again, I'd skip ordering ALL the tires and tubes from Van's, and just order all of them from Desser.  The nose tire is the "500-5 6-Ply Aero Classic Vintage" tire.  Then you'll get all 3 tubes, and 3 tires, from Desser, and the nose axle and wheel from Matco.  The only thing to get from Van's is the Cleaveland main wheels themselves.

Following the above advice should prevent you from having any headaches with your tires and wheels...things that have caused problems for many builders.  Oh, and DON'T FORGET the Axle Extensions!  I think you can still get them from Cleaveland Tools, right here.

Click the below for pictures of actual RV-10 tire installations, so you can see the issue.

Main Gear Tube Stem
Low Clearance (No Cap)
Main Gear Tube Stem
New Easy Valve
My Nosewheel Stem
(barely adequate)
My Nosewheel Stem
(Installed) Clear but tight
My Main Gear Tube Stem
Clears OK

My Main Gear Stem on
Balancer (Tight but ok)

Here are some pics of my new Matco NW511.25 Nosewheel.  Regretfully I do not have any photos of the stem clearance with the nosewheel isntalled.  When you see my old nosewheel lying next to the new nosewheel, look for the yellow valve cap.  Keep in mind that my original nosewheel tube actually cleared the fork by 1/8" or so, and notice how the old tire you can see the cap up above the tire, but the new tire the valve cap doesn't stick out past the height of the tire sidewall.  The clearance with it installed is at least 1/4", and probably more like 5/16", and that is with the Desser Leakguard tube/stem that actually sticks out FARTHER than my old stem!

The New Rim
New Rim - Note the stem hole is
in the opposite wheel half.
New Rim - The stem hole goes
through both halves
Stem Height Difference
Stem Height Difference The complete Matco wheel!