In Aviation, Details Matter.

Builders,

Here is another item from my hangar clean up. It stopped for its photo op on the way to the trash can. Tomorrow is trash day, and by the end of it this part will be in residence at the Clay county landfill and recycling center, but don’t let the lesson it has go to the dump with it.

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This is what is inside a ‘John Deere” generator.  We have used these for more than 20 years, they are totally reliable…..the way we use them. Today you can mount one on the front or rear of your Corvair engine….or both if you like. Both positions intentionally have a ‘fuse’ to the engine incase it jams or has a bearing failure. The front has the belt, and in the back it has a shear point. It is beyond foolish to run a generator or alternator without such a consideration. Even small Continentals which appear to be straight gear drives actually have shear points in them so the motor will not be stopped. There are people who have put similar systems directly on the rear of Corvairs and combined it with starters, but it is an accident waiting to happen.

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From 2004-2007, Between flying our 601XL test aircraft and the arrival of the gold hub system, we only had front alternators, driven by Black Hub systems. To slow the alternator down we developed a method of using a slightly larger pulley on the JD alternator. I modified dozens of them and they had a perfect track record. We charged about $40 to do so. Later, when Gold Hubs arrived, I designed them with a smaller integral drive pulley so the issue disappeared 12 years ago.

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Above, the inside of the JD unit, This particular one was screwed up by a builder in 2006 trying to save $40 who didn’t think that details mattered. It flew a while, but easily could have broken in flight. When I saw it, I took it out of service. If you look where the screwdriver is pointing, the permeant magnet, which is bonded into the shell, is broken. This is because the builder directly welded the pulley on the other side of the shell. Welding near bonded magnets isn’t a good idea, ever.

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The correct modification I did was welding the pulley onto the old pulley half, seen at the right, when it was removed from the unit. This kept all the heat away from the generator, and it was concentric because I did it in a lathe.  On the very surface, if you don’t look at the details, these were both welded pulleys. Had this one broken, do you think that the local expert observing the failure would read about the modification on my old site and say ‘you should have followed Wynne’s method or paid him to do it” or do you think they would just say “stupid car engine, can’t believe that jerk in Florida told him to weld on an electrical component”  You have to be a real optimist about people to believe the latter. 

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Your Corvair engine will present 100 chances to say things like:

“These spark plugs are just as good as the ones WW says to use”

“I use this kind of gasket sealer on Yamahas, so It’s better than what WW says to use.”

“I know he says not to hang a lot of brass plumbing off an 1/8″ pipe thread in the oil system, but I got away with it on my Nissan.”

“I couldn’t find what WW said to use, so I got this, its just as good”

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I would be OK with people doing these things, as long as when it didn’t work, they stood up and said, “You know, William said not to do this, and I was to cheap and lazy to listen to him, and I let my ego get in the way. I was planning on flying my family in this, wow, I was wrong.” 

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Don’t be tempted to say this wouldn’t happen. I’ve actually seen it happen exactly twice in 30 years.

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Wewjr.

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You might be a Motorhead if…..

Builders,

You might be a Motorhead if you have a piston from a 28 cylinder Pratt & Whitney R-4360 ‘Wasp Major’ radial as a coffee table ornament in your home.  Doesn’t everyone recognize tasteful interior decorating when they see it?

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Above, a R-4360 piston. Forget the 5.75″ bore, this engine had a 6″ stroke to go with it, and that piston had 27 angry siblings working with it, all fed by a combination of supercharging and turbocharging.  Each piston is 156 cubic inches of displacement, the motor is seventy-one liters. This particular piston flew at Reno in the Unlimited Sea Fury “Dreadnaught”. It was a gift from a Corvair builder who was a member of the planes pit crew.  The little piston riding piggy back is a 2,850cc Corvair piston.

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Wewjr.

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Deal if the Day, 1/23/19, Round 2

SORRY IT’S SOLD, Stay tuned for more Deals of the Day:

Builders;

I am working my way through a once a decade total hangar clean up, and I have come across a great number of slightly used items that I’m going to sell here. I have enough items that I can put up one or two a night for two weeks.

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Because  everything, including warfare, has ‘rules’, here we go:

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A) If you want to buy something, you have to have a Conversion manual of mine. If you don’t have one yet, I suggest you go to my products page and order one. (Just paying for one is good enough, you don’t have to have it in your hands to claim one of these items.) To get one:

Shop – Products | FlyCorvair.com

shop.flycorvair.com/shop/

( Or call SPA at 904-626-7777 during regular business hours. )

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B) If you see it and you want it, all you have to do is be the first builder to say “I’ll buy that” in the comments section. Please put your first and last name in there and the city you are from. After that you can text me your cell number at 904-806-8143 or Email it to me at WilliamTCA@Flycorvair.com.  If you are the second builder in the comments, do the same in case the first guy forgets to contact me for more than 24 hours. 

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C) I’ll cover the shipping on this stuff, as long as you are in the US. Outside of uncle Sam’s turf, my friends from abroad will have to cover shipping, tags, permits, VAT (whatever that is) and bribes to postal workers. I’ll deal with my broken government, you guys deal with your own taxmen and bureaucrats. Fair enough?

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OK, with that all covered, on to the second of this evenings “Deal of the Day”

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OK, here we have a “Black Prop Hub” This was a standard part for many years, from the early 1990s through 2010. It came in three series, this one is a 1999-2006 model. It has actually flown several hundred hours. It was on a 2,700cc Corvair without a 5th bearing, built in the early 2000s.  When the second owner upgraded to a 5th bearing, he also switched to a Short Gold prop hub.

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The only three people who should be looking at this are a person building a 1/3 Corvair, a person building a very close replica of an original B.H. Pietenpol engine, or someone with needs a cool Motorhead kitchen decoration.

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It actually looks much worse in pictures than it does in person.  It is actually a serviceable part. It isn’t corroded, the discoloration is just spots where the anodizing wore off.  If a 1/3 Corvair builder wanted to buy the material for the hub it would cost about the same price. This may look a bit rough, but it was made on state of the art CNC machines, from a solid billet of 6061-T6 aluminum.

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The last time we sold these new, they were roughly $400. Tonight’s second Deal of the Day: price as is; $100. 

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WewJr.

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You might be a Motorhead if….

Builders,

You might be a Motorhead if you have a 1920’s BG spark plug tester on your kitchen counter, just because admiring it and drinking coffee are a great way to start any day in the shop.

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BG was a very important aircraft spark plug manufacturer from 1918-64. They had many cutting edge innovations, including perfecting the platinum plug before WWII.  This is an M519 tester. The plug goes in upside down, the lever is pulled camming the plug upward, sealing it into the glass topped chamber. The air valve is tripped automatically and pressurizes the chamber, simulating the resistance in the chamber on the compression stroke. The spark is generated remotely by a battery and contacts, and observed through the glass window. It takes very little imagination to picture the planes this serviced. Its approaching 100 years old and it still works smoothly.  I inherited it from this friend: Dick Phillips – Bravo Zulu

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Wewjr.

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Deal Of the Day, 1/23/19

SORRY IT’S SOLD, Stay tuned for more Deals of the Day:

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Builders;

I am working my way through a once a decade total hangar clean up, and I have come across a great number of slightly used items that I’m going to sell here. I have enough items that I can put up one or two a night for two weeks.

.

Because  everything, including warfare, has ‘rules’, here we go:

.

A) If you want to buy something, you have to have a Conversion manual of mine. If you don’t have one yet, I suggest you go to my products page and order one. (Just paying for one is good enough, you don’t have to have it in your hands to claim one of these items.) To get one:

Shop – Products | FlyCorvair.com

shop.flycorvair.com/shop/
( Or call SPA at 904-626-7777 during regular business hours. )

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B) If you see it and you want it, all you have to do is be the first builder to say “I’ll buy that” in the comments section. Please put your first and last name in there and the city you are from. After that you can text me your cell number at 904-806-8143 or Email it to me at WilliamTCA@Flycorvair.com.  If you are the second builder in the comments, do the same in case the first guy forgets to contact me for more than 24 hours. 

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C) I’ll cover the shipping on this stuff, as long as you are in the US. Outside of uncle Sam’s turf, my friends from abroad will have to cover shipping, tags, permits, VAT (whatever that is) and bribes to postal workers. I’ll deal with my broken government, you guys deal with your own taxmen and bureaucrats. Fair enough?

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OK, with that all covered, on to tonights “Deal of the Day”

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Submitted for your approval:  One Aero Classic seven row oil cooler model #8000075.  (Perfect for any Corvair, except STOL in hot climate, which should have a 9 row.)  This was ground run as a test on a new Corvair motor for just one hour. If you buy it new from Aircraft Spruce, it is $307.00 plus shipping. Tonight’s deal of the day price is $165.00, domestic shipping included. Thanks, please remember A, B, and C above. 

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Wewjr.

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