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  #1  
Old 02-17-2017, 10:18 AM
AZChuck AZChuck is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Glendale
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Default Would You Buy an RV with ECI “Group A” Cylinders?

Looking at a 2005 RV-9A with a 160 HP O-320 that still has the ECI cylinders that fall in AD 2009-26-12 Group A category. AD says these cylinders should have a repetitive 50-hour check, looking for cracks or residue around exhaust valve side. Then do a compression check to be >70/80. If compression <70, look for leak near head-to-barrel interface which is where separations have occurred.

Seller never heard of the AD (I believe him) and didn’t get notice from engine builder AeroSport Power. Engine is past the 350 hour mark and hasn’t had compression check in a while. I’m having it checked before going to look at plane.

I’m wondering how many others are still running “Group A” cylinders? Have you done the recurring 50 hour compression and visual checks? How many hours have you accumulated?

If you were buying this plane, how much reduction in the price would you ask for over an unaffected engine?

Any other thoughts that might help me decide?


Only reason I haven’t scratched this plane off is that I haven’t found another painted, VFR, not all glass RV-9A that hasn’t been in a prop strike, over-turned, or has a bad engine pedigree. And isn’t $75-100K. Know of one?

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 02-17-2017, 10:37 AM
Ron B. Ron B. is offline
 
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Location: Yarmouth, Nova Scotia
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We bought two new engines with ECI cylinders (same day) . On my buddies SuperCub one of the cylinders blew off after passing the bubble test not long before. He replaced all his cylinders and I replaced all mine at that time also. The rep. at ECI could not have cared less when we called about our mishap. His son was on take off about 90 ft. above the lake (floats) and was able to make a small turn and landed successfully.
ECI's attitude would make me drop this RV sale. Maybe all manufacturers would have the same attitude , I do not know.
Ron Belliveau
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  #3  
Old 02-17-2017, 10:45 AM
FLTENG FLTENG is offline
 
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Short answer,"NO"
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  #4  
Old 02-17-2017, 10:58 AM
YellowJacket RV9 YellowJacket RV9 is offline
 
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If you otherwise are happy with the airplane, get a quote to install 4 new cylinders and figure that into your offer. If you are willing to pay for it, you could also offer to have a shop remove the cylinders and have a good look at the cam and internals. If everything looks good, you complete the purchase, and have 4 new cylinders installed. If the cam has corrosion, you have more problems, and can negotiate more or walk away.

Or, you could accept that despite the AD, failures have been relatively rare, and don't generally result in complete engine failure. ECI also claims many have been due to improper operation and high temperatures. Complying with the AD doesn't seem too difficult, you should be inspecting these areas and doing a compression check every year, anyways. I may get flamed for saying this, but depending on your risk tolerance, you could continue to fly with these cylinders and quite possibly have zero problems.

I bought a used O-320 that had had the AD'd cylinders - it was offered either with or without new cylinders. I went ahead and paid a bit more and had them replace the cylinders prior to purchasing and ended up with an excellent engine with a brand new top end. FWIW I have new Nickel ECI cylinders and they have been trouble free with very little oil use and excellent compressions.

Chris
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Last edited by YellowJacket RV9 : 02-17-2017 at 11:05 AM.
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  #5  
Old 02-17-2017, 11:00 AM
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JonJay JonJay is offline
 
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There is a lot of work keeping any airplane airworthy even when everything is perfect.
However, if you like the airplane, one path would be to engage an engine shop for an estimate on replacing the cylinders. You could then use that as a negotiating tool on price.

Good catch on the prebuy.
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  #6  
Old 02-17-2017, 11:13 AM
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Are you referring to this http://eci.aero/pdf/08-1.pdf which is listed as a Mandatory Service Bulletin, and not an AD.

I looked at the ECI website where they have service notices, http://eci.aero/TechSupport/ServicePubs.aspx and the above is as close to what you are describing as I can find.

Seems pretty benign to me. Requires compression check every 50 hours, which is going to be handled at annual for most folks --as that is way more than they fly in a year.

Cylinders are good for 2000 hours if not failing the compression or visual test.

Or, maybe there are two different sets of cylinders needing the inspection??

One under an AD and the other the ECI MSB??

Mahlon--------you out there?
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  #7  
Old 02-17-2017, 11:14 AM
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pazmanyflyer pazmanyflyer is online now
 
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If you have a good look inside at the cam and crank and all else seems good you can go YellowJackets route with new cylinders going for about $1000 each plus cost of A&P R&R time. That's were I'd focus my price negotiations.
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Last edited by pazmanyflyer : 02-17-2017 at 11:19 AM.
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  #8  
Old 02-17-2017, 11:17 AM
ArlingtonRV ArlingtonRV is offline
 
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Location: Marysville, WA
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Default I Did

I bought an RV-4 with "Group A" cylinders. The seller notified me of the AD at time of sale. I operated the airplane for 2 years and 200+ hours complying with the repetitive inspection. Never had a problem. Sold the airplane, informed the buyer and provided a copy of the AD, to the best of my knowledge it is still running strong.

I didn't worry about it too much, I just kept a close eye on everything.

The other drawback is that even if they don't fail they have to be removed from service 2,000 hours from the effective date of the AD and they cannot be overhauled.

That said, if it makes you nervous and you would be afraid of the airplane or not feel comfortable making trips then either don't buy it or get the cylinders replaced.
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  #9  
Old 02-17-2017, 11:18 AM
YellowJacket RV9 YellowJacket RV9 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike S View Post
Are you referring to this http://eci.aero/pdf/08-1.pdf which is listed as a Mandatory Service Bulletin, and not an AD.

I looked at the ECI website where they have service notices, http://eci.aero/TechSupport/ServicePubs.aspx and the above is as close to what you are describing as I can find.

Seems pretty benign to me. Requires compression check every 50 hours, which is going to be handled at annual for most folks --as that is way more than they fly in a year.

Cylinders are good for 2000 hours if not failing the compression or visual test.

Or, maybe there are two different sets of cylinders needing the inspection??

One under an AD and the other the ECI MSB??

Mahlon--------you out there?
http://safarihelicopter.com/wp-conte...I-Cylinder.pdf

This looks to be the AD he refers to, and the requirements are the same as you list, 50 hour compression and visual checks, as well as replacement at 2000 hours.

Chris
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  #10  
Old 02-17-2017, 11:32 AM
AZChuck AZChuck is offline
 
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Location: Glendale
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Default YellowJacket link

The link YellowJacket provided is correct. The AD in the initial post supersedes the 2008 AD. Here is the link I used.

http://rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_Library/rgAD.nsf/0/fd1c80194ba0b8da8625769d00695ada/$FILE/2009-26-12.pdf

Does anyone still have the cylinders in use? How many hours?

Thanks
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