Mark Borden takes the output record and sets down a wicked CMP.

Builders,

The last 48 hours were a blur of fun and productivity at my hangar, as Zenith 750 builder Mark Borden of MT, came to town, finished and ran his 3.3L engine in a box kit from SPA.  This morning it cranked for less than 2 seconds from dead cold to put down a very smooth break in run.

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Above, Mark’s  engine running. After a 30 minute run, I took the engine to full power for 10 seconds to check its output. It turned my test prop 3,440 rpm, a record, even factoring in the 45F OAT.  The 3.3 is one serious power producer. All 3.3L engines are based on the SPA Billet stroker, Made in the USA crankshaft. It’s 10% edge in displacement isn’t the whole story as 2016 professional computer dyno tests showed it actually has a slight volumetric efficiency edge and the output is 12% higher than a 3.0L Corvair. For Comparison my personal 3.0L Corvair turned the same test prop 3,340 rom just before Mark’s engine. 100 static RPM doesn’t sound like much if you are not familiar with tests, but it is a seat of your pants flying difference you can feel in your plane.

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Above, a quick look at a future story: It is 45F in the photo, the engine is at 1,500 rpm and the humidity is near 70%. This is prime icing conditions, yet there is no frost on the manifold nor carb; This is simple, I have the test stand’s rudimentary carb heat on, and it is not an issue at all. Carb heat works best if you actually use it. It is like giving to charities, seriously thinking of doing it counts exactly the same as not doing it at all. Carb heat is always to be used as anti-ice, not de-ice.

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All visitors at my place are welcome to use my range. Serious fans of shooting bring their own tools. In between build sessions Mark and I tried his Ruger New Frontier in .45LC. It was great. I used it to deal with an insolent, cheap multi meter which would not read ohms. The remains of the meter are red and hanging from the backstop.

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Mark was here for two days and blended right in to our community, meeting neighbors and sampling cultural highlights like ‘Ronnies’ the local bar and grill.  Mark is a really good guy, an airline pilot with a lot of interesting experiences like entering Cold War Albania just for a bit of adventure. He is a family man who chooses to live both physically and mentally far from the consumer world. Building his own engine fits with this.

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Above, a fun picture: Mark sets his “Captain Morgan Pose” with his running engine. complete with torque wrench sword and actual product (which neither he nor I drink) but it was all part of a very good time. Captain Morgan probably would find the ‘product placement’ humorous, but I’m guessing that Flight Safety would rather not have their jacket in there. Too bad for them, we were having a day Pappy Boyington would have found fun.

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Read this related story about meeting Mark 18 years ago: 2018 Zenith Open House -The long run.

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2019 is already 1/12th gone. What are you going to accomplish this flying season? It’s all up to you, man a plan today, don’t let this year escape. For more info on the ‘engine in a box’ program call SPA at 904-626-7777 and ask for Rachel, for more information about scheduling a build or run session at my hangar call my cell 904-806-8143.

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Read :“Captain Morgan” Contest at #39

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Wewjr.

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About William Wynne
I have been continuously building, testing and flying Corvair engines since 1989. Information, parts and components that we developed and tested are now flying on several hundred Corvair powered aircraft. I earned a Bachelor of Science in Professional Aeronautics and an A&P license from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, and have a proven 20 year track record of effectively teaching homebuilders how to create and fly their own Corvair powered planes. Much of this is chronicled at www.FlyCorvair.com and in more than 50 magazine articles.

4 Responses to Mark Borden takes the output record and sets down a wicked CMP.

  1. Lane says:

    Mannn you get to have all the fun!!!

  2. marktbaldridge says:

    This might be an ignorant question, but out of curiosity, how much HP is being produced to turn the test prop at 3,440 RPM?

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