Immelman

Vacuum step conversion or removal?

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I'm looking at ditching my vacuum system (G5 upgrade). The only thing left after my attitude indicator is gone is the vacuum step. I have seen the electric step and its pretty cool, but I'd rather make the airplane more simple.

Has anyone removed their retractable step on a vintage mooney and replaced with a fixed step (something more aerodynamic like on a newer mooney)?

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Someone here has an electric step modification kit for sale.  Hopefully someone can chime in with who it is.

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11 minutes ago, Andy95W said:

Someone here has an electric step modification kit for sale.  Hopefully someone can chime in with who it is.

Thought it was Takair. Flightenhancements.com

Edited by Sabremech
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the challenge with the existing step...   it has no aerodynamic quality... and leaves a giant hole when removed...

Fortunately, the electric conversion covers a few bases all at the same time...

livened up @Sabremech’s link...

http://flightenhancements.com/index.html

Try this thread for details....

 

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I'm currently having Aspen max upgrade done. The electric step is next so I can remove both vacuums and all the plumbing. 

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My experience...... years ago I had a gear up landing in my F model .   It was a mechanical issue not a forget to put the gear down situation.

 After I stopped the engine prior to touchdown, the vacuum step extended .

 That piece of aluminum did far more damage to the airframe than anything else .

 With repair of the aircraft, we removed the step .  

 My thought process was, should it happen again, I didn’t want a possible repeat of such damage.

Nothing worse than hearing and feeling your beautiful aircraft scrapping along the runway for a very short time :angry:

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If you decide to replace your vacuum step with electric, keep your fellow CB Mooniacs in mind and post your vacuum step for resale.  They are hard to come by and in high demand!

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J's came from the factory with either the fixed step or no step at all.   A hangar neighbor has one that has no step.   He's owned the airplane for decades and apparently doesn't miss the step.   I use mine all the time, but I have bad knees.

So maybe no step at all is a viable option.
 

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3 minutes ago, EricJ said:

J's came from the factory with either the fixed step or no step at all.   A hangar neighbor has one that has no step.   He's owned the airplane for decades and apparently doesn't miss the step.   I use mine all the time, but I have bad knees.

So maybe no step at all is a viable option.
 

Yes, of course, the step certainly has a great value.

At my time of life, I didn’t think about such things.  I was young and foolish......:D 

I continue to be foolish, but no longer young :P

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Is a minimalist similar to a CB perhaps? :lol:

Strike that from the record!!

Let me rephrase the question....

In your opinion Jim, are there similarities between a minimalist and a CB ? :rolleyes:

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55 minutes ago, 75_M20F said:

My F model has a fixed step. Can the fixed step be replaced with this electric conversation one?

This is what I would prefer. A fixed step.

I am 6'3" and personally don't need the step. But I've had people and the dog step on my flaps :(( and it taught me: the airplane really ought to have a step).

The electric conversion looks really spiffy!! But its yet another system to eventually break. Less is more. Simpler is better. Same reason I like the johnson bar gear. If there were a way to easily bolt on a fixed step from an F/J that would be swell. I have not looked at the structural differences in that area yet.

And yes if I do this mod of course I will sell the vacuum step system.

 

Edited by Immelman

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My former Ovation had a bolted on fixed step.  

For some reason, I was under the  impression that it was a break away type situation should a gear up be encountered.

That information could be false too and fortunately I never found out ! 

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1 hour ago, MooneyMitch said:

Is a minimalist similar to a CB perhaps? :lol:

Strike that from the record!!

Let me rephrase the question....

In your opinion Jim, are there similarities between a minimalist and a CB ? :rolleyes:

Hmmm . . . I qualify for the latter, but with WAAS GPS, Stormscope and Carb Temp gage installed, probably not the former . . . . .

 

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17 hours ago, Immelman said:

This is what I would prefer. A fixed step.

I am 6'3" and personally don't need the step. But I've had people and the dog step on my flaps :(( and it taught me: the airplane really ought to have a step).

The electric conversion looks really spiffy!! But its yet another system to eventually break. Less is more. Simpler is better. Same reason I like the johnson bar gear. If there were a way to easily bolt on a fixed step from an F/J that would be swell. I have not looked at the structural differences in that area yet.

And yes if I do this mod of course I will sell the vacuum step system.

 

But the retractable step folks will tell you that you’ll lose 7 knots and yaw hard right with a fixed step!  Surprised nobody said that yet!

So lasar has fixed steps.  They are about $1000 for a metal tube/step.  That doesn’t include the “aerodynamic” fairing that goes around it if you’re so inclined.  My F has a fixed step and I like it.  They are in a tough environment and tend to rust from the inside though.

If you went without, it seems a simple job to fabricate a patch over the hole.

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8 minutes ago, Ragsf15e said:

But the retractable step folks will tell you that you’ll lose 7 knots and yaw hard right with a fixed step!  Surprised nobody said that yet!

So lasar has fixed steps.  They are about $1000 for a metal tube/step.  That doesn’t include the “aerodynamic” fairing that goes around it if you’re so inclined.  My F has a fixed step and I like it.  They are in a tough environment and tend to rust from the inside though.

If you went without, it seems a simple job to fabricate a patch over the hole.

For $1000 I will keep a folding step stool in the hangar and take it along if flying with someone who might need it.

Yeah, maybe removal isn't so bad after all. Even with the step I have gotten into the habit of putting the flaps down if I will be inviting others aboard.

Edited by Immelman

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7 minutes ago, Immelman said:

For $1000 I will keep a folding step stool in the hangar and take it along if flying with someone who might need it.

Yeah, maybe removal isn't so bad after all. Even with the step I have gotten into the habit of putting the flaps down if I will be inviting others aboard.

Yep, that’s definitely reasonable.

My step is original and it was corroding pretty badly.  I looked at replacing it last annual and decided against the $1000.  Instead, my mechanic cleaned it real good and put a few coats of new paint along with reinforcing under the step.  Good as new and much cheaper.

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Maybe you could you get an original manual hand crank cable step from a model A,B or early C and use it to replace your vacuum step.

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10 hours ago, kerry said:

Maybe you could you get an original manual hand crank cable step from a model A,B or early C and use it to replace your vacuum step.

Good idea, but honestly the takair electric version would be cheaper, easier, and faster to install.  The Manual step would be a fairly in-depth conversion.

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On 10/3/2019 at 5:26 PM, skydvrboy said:

If you decide to replace your vacuum step with electric, keep your fellow CB Mooniacs in mind and post your vacuum step for resale.  They are hard to come by and in high demand!

Dumb question, but why wouldn't they go with the electric step?

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So having only flown one "Modern" mooney (a friend's 231) my exposure to that side of the fleet has been limited. I've been in other C's and E's.

In searching mooneyspace I learned that the fixed step was an option on the J. And sure enough, when I look at various photos of newer mooneys I see many without the step.

That nudges me in the direction of removal and patch the hole.

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58 minutes ago, rbridges said:

Dumb question, but why wouldn't they go with the electric step?

$$$ of course.  The electric step is $395 plus shipping whereas I paid $100 shipped for the used vacuum step.  If you're not removing the vacuum system, no need to spend the extra.

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A fixed step will cost you seven knots of speed and cause a slight yaw to starboard.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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