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Everything posted by Warren

  1. I have a 1985 M20K 231. It was the last of the 14V for the K models. In 1986 the M20K 252 was 28V. Not sure when the J’s moved to 28V. All earlier models were 14V.
  2. Longest for me was a return from the Bahamas to Denver earlier this year. A storm front forced us to overnight in Fort Pierce, Florida which left us with the choice to stop for a second night or go all the way in the second day. Total time from Fort Pierce to Denver was 12 hours flying (engine start to stop, which is probably closer to 11 hours of real flying) due to significant head winds. We stopped 1/2 way for a break and a little more fuel, then a second rest stop at about 75% of the trip. A much longer break and dinner, then the final decision to stay or fly the last 2 hours. We felt good so decided to push on. It was a very long day but the autopilot and a couple of breaks made it tolerable and I still felt sharp on landing. Being fully rested and coming home from a relaxing vacation helped. I expected it was likely we would overnight and certainly would have defaulted to that decision if there was any question. It is possible under ideal conditions but I would never plan or commit to this long a flight without rest stops and a mental check to stop and overnight if there was any issues with fatigue.
  3. For my first couple of samples after purchasing the plane I had higher fuel in the oil and low flash point. I got good advice that if you follow the standard full prop, full mixture during landing you run very rich and can add enough fuel to have it show up in the oil. I moved to full prop but not full mixture on final (staying lean - I know, some of you will comment about go around risk) and all samples since show almost no fuel and normal flash point. Not sure if this is your issue but it worked great for me. I also fly out of a 6000’ airport so full rich is very rich here.
  4. I found it on eBay. People are selling used as taken out of light bars. Search for LR11 and Whelen.
  5. Whelen makes a LED light for their standard automotive light bars and the lights can be found on ebay for about $25. (Edit: Search for LR11 light) Here are a few pics. The LED is brighter than the incandescent bulb. Shows airplane with LED on left and incandescent on right. Then a few pictures of before and after as well as the LED light as received and after the brackets are trimmed as well as adding a little heat shrink to protect the connection to the board. Also need a pin removal tool and a two pin connector to replace the three pin. Overall a pretty quick and easy project. Only airplane mod is drilling a couple of holes and relieving two areas for the wires. It would be easy to swap out the old bulb if anyone had any issues with the LED. And, never have to replace the cover again — they are hardly warm when on. Also, this is a 12V module. Not sure if it would like 24V- maybe have to measure the current draw and put a resistor inline to drop the voltage for 24V. Small voltage regulators (circuit boards less than 1” square) are also less than $10 and you could wire it inline and pick your voltage.
  6. I live in Denver and am hangared at KBJC. I have owned a 231 for three years and think the turbo is very beneficial in this environment. Although you fly back and forth to Florida I am guessing you will want to explore all the wonderful mountain communities in Colorado. The turbo really helps at altitude during the warmer summer days. I flew to Telluride and was able to easily depart on a warm afternoon with a DA of 11,000’. The jets were all grounded and had to wait until evening or morning. As others have said, the 252 is better but at a higher price. A 231 with an intercooler and Merlyn upper deck pressure controller gives most of the performance of a 252 (agreed still a little less) but requires a little more pilot diligence. It is not that significant once you come up the learning curve. My airplane is in annual right now but I am happy to talk further and take you for a ride if you find your way to Denver. I think a 231 could be a good fit based on your mission. Long range tanks also really open up long flights. I flew to Florida a couple of months ago and could have made it with the favorable tail winds except weather forced me to stop short and overnight in southern Alabama. Warren
  7. I have used them for the last two years as they were the lowest cost (sub-500 hr pilots have less options). However, all I can say is that the quotes were the lowest, they seem to be responsive, comparisons seem to cover all the basic insurances that others cover and they collect the premium effectively. Hopefully this also carries over if there is a claim.
  8. I have the GMX200, GTN 650 and GTX 345 in my plane. I love the large display of the GMX200 and find that I mainly use the GTN for changing frequencies or loading approaches — I mainly use the ipad for all the flight planning and fight updates (except approaches). The GTX345 will provide ADS-B data directly to the low cost version of the GMX 200 (without in the additional I/O option). The GTN 650 provides all the rest of the flight plan, GPS,... data. Note: I also have and Aspen Pro 1000. The GMX 200 uses the same ADS-B output from the GTX 345 so no ADS-B data can be fed to the Aspen - only one data output and apparently different data protocols. The charts on the GMX200 are not great due to the lower resolution. I choose not to subscribe to the chart data as the ipad has far superior resolution and ability for touch zoom. I use Garmin Pilot and Fltplan Go. Both have pretty good chart features and ipad overheating isn’t an issue when you really need the charts (real IFR conditions=no sun).
  9. Sams club and Home Depot both have the Sportsman Generators on sale (Sam's club only until March 29, 2019) if anyone missed the last rush at Home Depot.
  10. I called and asked about replacing my vacuum ones. The answer I got is that the mounting locations are different and the replacement process is to patch the holes in the wing then cut new holes for the electric speed brakes. I kept the vacuum pump.
  11. Check the drive coupling. Mine failed last year and after lots of electrical troubleshooting I discovered that the rubber drive coupling was slipping. You can check this by trying to manually turn the alternator through the holes in the cast mounting adapter that goes between the alternator and the engine. With mine, I could turn the alternator by hand. $500 later, new coupling and it works like new.
  12. The intercooloer should resolve any issues with the inlet charge temperature. Ultimately the CDT will be reduced across the intercooler to a much lower inlet charge temperature. In my 231, the intercooler reduces the temperature 70-90 C. My intercooler STC reuires a temperature sensor that measures the CDT and Inlet Charge Temperture as well as the difference between the two. This decrease in temperature is used to adjust the maximum manifold pressure. Detonation can be caused by high inlet temperatures but with your intercooler this should not be the issue. General guidance for remaining clear of detonation are the following: More fuel - under full power, make sure there is plenty of fuel. In our engines, 23-25 gph gives good margin. If you aren’t seeing this much fuel, have it adjusted. Excess fuel is important for cooling and slowing the combustion burn rate under full power. Higher rpm - moves the peak cylinder pressure later in the cycle. Lower risk at 2700 rpm. Not too much MP - make sure you are accounting for the intercooler and reducing the MP appropriately. You can’t run 40” with this setup because the intercooler increases the density of the air and at 40” you are making more than rated power. Good luck.
  13. I bought a 231 with only 70 hours all in a 172. With good transition training it is not hard to learn to fly. Just take the time to slowly build experience. A careless moment or a careless pilot can get you in trouble much more quicky in a Mooney than a 172. Higher performance requries a little more precision when flying. I think it is finacially much less expensive to buy a longer term airplane than take an intermediate step and upgrade later. The biggest challenge is learning to deal with the speed during descent and landing. Flying at altitude, on oxygen and in the flight levels can wait until you have more experience. Lower cost is the 231. Make sure you get one with an intercooler and upper deck pressure controller or plan to make this upgrade. This closes the performance gap to the 252 significantly. Still need to manage MP but this quickly becomes second nature and is only critical when applying takeoff power — about 15 sec on a normal flight and during a ‘go around.’ I was really comfortable with everything after about 30 hours of flying. I then did my IR and that also made a huge difference in my piloting ability and general comfort with the airplane. Better yet is the 252. Costs more money and if you can afford it, it is the better plane and worth the extra money. For the extra money you get better MP control, larger turbo, 24V, dual alternators, infinitely adjustable cowl flaps and more speed (5-10 knots at altitude). Probably a few more things but this gives you a general idea. And one more is the Encore upgrade — big increase in useful load if you can find one. The other obvious question is level of avionic upgrades and maintenance. There are huge upgrade costs and/or maintenance costs that will overshadow the purchase price considerably. Good luck.
  14. As I read through this it is still hard to understand. I question the failure mode. If it failed in tension it would have broken while retracting the gear. How does a failed link then properly extend and lock the gear? Buckling failure seems far more likely under the compression load. It seems like the gear extended fully and the force caused the threaded section to buckle and fail after full extension. I can see a slightly buckled joint still fully extending the gear then getting pulled in tension during retraction and continually cycled until failure. However, this should cause cracking and an obvious pattern in the failed part. It sounds like this is not supported by the failure analysis but it is hard to believe that a full tension failure would allow the gear to extend. If a partial tension failure with necking was followed by a buckling failure on extension, there should be obvious signs of bending prior to full failure. Just random thoughts from my failure analysis experience. Still hard to understand based on the failure analysis vs. the description of the operation during failure.
  15. Garmin seems really good at extracting maximum dollars from the marketplace. The Fltplan.com has been a free app and has all the maps and procedures available for free. The owners figured out how to make money by selling to Garmin. I am sure Garmin invested in the purchase to get rid of one of their biggest competitors to GP. I would be shocked if we don't start to see user fees or some other way to recover the investment. Likely will eventually get rolled into the Garmin product or obsoleted and disappear as a free option. Remember the Apollo acquisition (is GNS480)? Purchased a big competitor and eventually obsoleted the product. Now they dominate the GPS market.
  16. I don't have access to Aviation Consumer but my engine development experience and engineering background disagree completely. When running stoichiometric or ROP, an engine's power output is based on air consumption. Air consumption in aviation is primarily determined by MP and RPM. However volume is only one part of the picture as the combustion process cares about the molecules of O2 available for combustion. At lower manifold temperatures and similar MP, the same volume of air has a higher density, thus has more oxygen available and can produce more power. It is true that an intercooler reduces pressure and temperature causing the turbocharger to work a little harder to create the same manifold pressure at a lower temperature. This is because there is more air being compressed due to the change in density. More air equals more power. If you take engine operating parameters from an non-intercooled engine running 150 ROP and add an intercooler while keeping MP constant you have added more air with the same fuel. You now are closer to peak temperature and risk getting into the "Red Box". At high power settings this is a risk as you are increasing the engine output and running nearer to peak temperatures. The intercooler manufacturer guidance or a 252 manual will provide good reference to adjust for the intercooler. It is critical to make adjustments and not rely on the original 231 settings. Stoichiometric or ROP, engine power is based on air consumption (density is important) as all the oxygen is consumed which limits the power. LOP power is based in fuel consumption as all the fuel is consumed and here the fuel limits power.
  17. My bad connection was on the wiring from the backup AI. About 1 foot away (middle of the panel on the pilots side). In my case it was a DB9 connector that had been wired in. However, the shells were not installed on the connector and thus the wires had no strain relief. Thin wires, no strain relief -- it was only a matter of time before failure. It was a quick fix to replace the pin on the broken wire. I ordered DB9 shells and added them to the connector. These are readily available and pretty simple to install - search DB9 connectors and you can find lots of options.
  18. After my GTN650 upgrade I had similar issues — I learned a lot about how things work. The Aspen only provides heading references to the autopilot as a direct heading from the Aspen heading or a passthrough when in GPSS mode. The non-Aspen attitude indicator is responsible for the analog attitude indications which the autopilot uses to make corrections to course. With these analog signals and the autopilot there is no error indication except the autopilot appears to lose its mind. During my install/upgrade one of the wires was broken (poor previous install with a DB9 connector and no strain relief) between the attitude indicator and the autopilot — of course it was intermittent, adding to the challenge. After chasing it for a long time I repaired the wire, added a shell for strain relief and it has worked flawlessly since. There are only 4 wires, so relatively easy to trace and confirm good connections. Edit (added after I realized this was not accurate in all cases): This does not apply if you have the EA100 adapter. That can provide attitude information from the Aspen to the autopilot.
  19. My 1985 K model has the adjustable height seats. To get the seat to move forward and aft enough to release from the rails the seat needs to be all the way down in one direction and all the way up on the other end. I can’t remember which but it took a little head scratching the first time.
  20. Don Maxwell (@Oldguy) made a post about this a couple of months ago. I can’t find a way to copy the link but here is the copy of the post title. G1000 WAAS upgrade parts availability ending It sounded like Don was trying to round up as many parts as he could to be able to offer the upgrades. If you want it done it sounds like soon may be the only option and is still pretty expensive.
  21. I have an 85 K model and have run each side dry multiple times (on separate flights) to get an accurate measurement. When I refill to the flapper seat I get 33.8-34 gallons in the tank. I know this doesn’t count legally useable fuel but I know pretty close to when the actual level flight fuel exhaustion will happen. I can get more in by being patient but have the extended tanks and have never filled right to the top as I can easily get the fuel I need with the extended tanks. I have also checked my low fuel level and I run out in the 2.5-3 gal range after the light comes on.
  22. This might be a silly question...but. What if you called the G5 primary and the G500 the backup? Would that get past the paperwork challenge?
  23. Thanks for sharing your experience. My research and experience is a little different than yours. Quote from "Continuous Flow Fuel Injection Systems," Aircraft Maintenance Technology, November 1998: "All TCM pumps rely on a “by-pass valve” which serves to purge vapors from the lines when the boost pump is engaged prior to engine start up." This article reviews fuel setup on the various variants of TCM engines from naturally aspirated through fuel injected. It also has an interesting side bar about the complexity of setting up a TSIO-360 with aftermarket intercoolers and the Merlin wastegate controller. If you are seeing excessive fuel being dumped when running the boost pump while at ICO on your mixture, something is not correct. I would be worried that there is some damage/scoring/seals allowing leakage or you are not adjusted to get full cut-off. I run the boost pump frequently for cold and hot starts and have never observed excess fuel during this process. I looked at my setup in an -LB engine and there is a vapor line returning to the tanks from the top of the fuel pump. SID97-3G also has coverage of the full range of pumps. All these pumps also show a vapor return line. Just sharing my experience and research. Use your own judgement and make your decisions about safe operation. But, always good advice to be aware to look for fuel leakage. If you are going to try the boost pump operations it would be good practice to try this where you can make a good inspection for any excess fuel in and around the engine. It is definitely not a good idea to have lots of excess fuel pooling and try to start an engine. Good luck and be safe.
  24. I think there is still some misunderstanding of the various options with the TSIO-360 and the prime vs. boost function. 1. All low boost, high boost and prime use the same electric fuel pump. Low boost has a resistor inline which reduces the pump output, high boost and prime use the pump at full power/capacity. 2. High boost and low boost simply turn on the pump and provide backup/replacement for the mechanical fuel pump. Boost provides fuel to the injection system. How much fuel flow is dependent on the mixture, throttle and whether high/low boost are selected. 3. Prime also turns on the pump and energizes a valve that shuttles fuel to the intake manifold. 4. Summary -- Low/high boost puts fuel through the injectors and prime sprays fuel into the intake manifold. Prime Starting - Starting per the user manual and prime function dumps fuel into the intake. When the engine starts rotating, the mechanical pump starts to fill the fuel lines to the injectors. It takes some time to fill the fuel/injector lines and the manual recommends prime pump to keep the engine running while this happens and the engine eventually starts to run from fuel in the injectors. Boost Starting - The alternate many recommend is to use the high boost pump to load the main injection system and supply starting fuel to the cylinders directly. Most recommend xx seconds or wait until the fuel flow comes up indicating there is fuel flowing in the system. There is some risk with this process as it is possible to put too much fuel in the cylinders if you leave the pump on too long. No problem if you are careful not to run the pump too long but be careful. Hot Start - Many recommend throttle closed and mixture at cut-off. Use the high boost for up to 60 sec to circulate cool fuel from the tanks through the system and back to the tank effectively removing fuel vapor from the lines and cooling the lines with fresh fuel. Then start per your normal procedure. Hopefully this helps. Just a summary of what I have learned and read as I have researched operating my 231. I have tried all the above and they seem to work well. What I have found works best for me and almost never leads to a missed start. 1. Prime per table in manual. 2. Throttle to 1/4, mixture full rich. 3. High boost until FF comes up. 4. Start and pull throttle back as it catches. Hot Start - 60 sec high boost with closed throttle and mixture at cut-off. I have tried with and without the high boost and both work well. It just seems that with the high boost it starts quicker and does not require additional shots of prime to keep it running. Random thoughts from another rookie pilot. Good luck.
  25. I have a 231 with the upper deck pressure controller and an intercooler (similar to gxsrpilot with a little smaller turbo and not quite as good coolling). I always run lean of peak except for during the climb (full rich for this) and am limited by TIT at high power settings. My GAMI spread is about 0.5gph and all the cylinder heads run <360 (at 16-18k altitude, approx. 0C, near 75% power LOP). I am limited by the TIT. 75% power for me is 11.5 gph (I use 2500 rpm and about 33” MP). Usually at 11.5 gph I will run too high on TIT (it usually puts me really close to 1650 TIT) so I choose to back off a little. I lean until I get under 1625 to have a little margin. Using this limit I can usually find a good cruise at 11.0-11.3 gph making almost 75% power (much smaller number for me than a rocket) and this results in about 175-180 TAS at 16-18k. As you apporach 75% power, TIT is the limiting factor (in a TSIO-360). When LOP, TIT will be approx. 100F higher than in EGT. Under lean conditions the flame front is burning so much slower so there is residual combustion happening in the exhaust which continues to raise the temperature afther the EGT sensors.