Terry Hand’s 2700 cc Pietenpol engine – w/Weseman 5th bearing

Builders,

Below is a good photo of Terry Hand’s Pietenpol engine. It is a 2700 cc Corvair with all of our gold systems, a Weseman 5th bearing, and our new 2400-L ultra light weight starter. ( 2400-L Starter ) Terry took the photo on our front lawn right after a test run on our stand. He came down a few days after Christmas and assembled the engine under my supervision. It ran perfectly. Like many of our builders, Terry has put in a significant effort to put back into the Corvair Movement. He Is the moderator on our new Pietenpol Corvair builder group, ( Piet / Vair internet builders group, started 4/24/15 ) and he has done a lot of behind the scenes work on important projects like arranging support for Spencer Rice, our youngest Corvair builder. ( Spencer Rice’s ‘new’ engine and CC scolarship account ) Opening our shop to him for a few days at the end of the year was a mall gesture of thanks for his work.

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Above, Terry’s engine. Can you guess from the Color choice that Terry flew in the Marines? You can click on the photo to see a larger version.

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The interesting thing about Terry’s engine is its history: It flew about 100 hours with its original owner. A nice guy, but a poor match for Corvairs (or many other engines) because he didn’t want to do things like set the timing on the engine or follow much of my guidance or read things I wrote. The engine never quit on the guy but he did blow a head gasket, overheat it, and he ran it out of oil, twice,( on the same trip.) Unhappy with the engine he complained about it, ( and only later realized this undermined his ability to sell it.) I offered to assist him to correct the damage, but he declined, thinking that the problem was with the engine, not the operation. A few months later he sold the engine to Terry for a fraction of what he had in it, a fair value for an unloved engine, not running with a blown head gasket.  A few days of work, about $1,600 in repair parts and upgrades, and Terry now has the engine that will power his Pietenpol for years of reliable service. The difference? Terry understands that the issue was all in the mindset of the builder, and had nothing to do with the engine.

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Here is a link to a one minute video of the engine running on the test stand:

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QVBRCKk5_E

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Corvair College #33 – builders on video

Builders,

While he was enjoying Corvair College #33, Pietenpol builder Terry Hand, took a moment to interview several of the builders on hand for the college. It is an interesting cross section of builders using the Corvair in their homebuilt. Here is a link:

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ur4lTcaLfaI

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What kind of builders select a Corvair? The obvious answer that comes through is all different kinds, but if you listen to them, a common thread emerges of people who have considered the question carefully and made a plan of action. While we have many people who are very new to homebuilding and have never built any kind of engine before, we also have a number of aviators who have a lifetime of experience in flying, men who understand the qualities of a simple, reliable engine. Case in point, Builder Don Murphy, who is in the middle of the video. He is in his early 80s, finishing a Zenith, but he has a long personal history in aviation, dating back to flying Medivac Helicopters in both Korea and Vietnam.    -ww.

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