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  #1  
Old 04-08-2018, 11:44 AM
David Paule David Paule is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 3,470
Default Where To Put a Gascolator?

I've got an O-320 for my RV-3B, and as I get closer to skinning the forward cockpit area, I'm wondering where y'all have put a gascolator, assuming that you have one.

I no longer have my floor-mounted Aerolab one, as it was simply too physically painful to push that little red button in. There are other issues that I didn't care for, too. That said, it was well-made and a good conceptual approach to the issue.

I have an Andair gascolator here. It can be mounted externally to the cockpit, if I had a good place well away from the bottom of the firewall - and that restriction, all by itself, tends to negate some of its usability. I don't want to mount it on the bottom of the firewall partly due to the nearness of the exhaust pipes. A friend is welding a bracket for his to the engine mount, but for unrelated reasons that option isn't available to me. Still, if there were a good place to mount it, I would.

One thing I've been thinking of, is to make my own gascolator. I'd like to hear your thoughts about placement before I do that. If I can avoid making my own, I will.

Thank you very much,
Dave
Here's the blog.
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  #2  
Old 04-08-2018, 08:16 PM
Lars Lars is online now
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Davis, CA
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The best place I can think of to put a gascolator is on the VAF classified, but thatís just me
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  #3  
Old 04-08-2018, 09:21 PM
David Paule David Paule is offline
 
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Location: Boulder, CO
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Oh, this airplane will have one - this isn't a discussion about whether one is necessary or not. That decision has been made.

The matter at hand is which, and where.

Discussions and photos of RV-3 gascolator mountings, if anyone has any, please, along with comments of how well it worked out.

Thanks!

Dave
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  #4  
Old 04-08-2018, 11:08 PM
Lars Lars is online now
 
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Location: Davis, CA
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Sorry Dave, that was a snarky reply. I see an RV-3 several days a week. I will have a look next time I see it and if I can offer useful advice I will report back.
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  #5  
Old 04-09-2018, 09:16 AM
rv7charlie rv7charlie is offline
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Pocahontas MS
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My -4 had it mounted at the bottom center of the firewall. Hard to imagine the -3 would be that different, but I don't know. I do know that it logically should be mounted low, and that it's a great place to collect heat and insert that heat into the fuel....

Charlie
(I still have the -4, and I still have the gascolator, but it's in a box on a shelf somewhere, now.)
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  #6  
Old 04-09-2018, 01:21 PM
sf3543 sf3543 is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: San Antonio, TX
Posts: 901
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My RV3 is nearing completion and the engine and all components are installed.
I have the O-320 and a CS prop with MT governor. Also, an angle oil filter adapter, a heat exchanger box on the firewall, baffle mounted oil cooler and Vetterman's 4 pipe exhaust.
Its important to note this because with all the other pass-throughs for wiring, hoses and such, there is very little room behind the engine on an RV3 to put much else on the firewall, due to its size. I would think you could mount the gascolater in the center of the FW, if you really plan ahead but since the motor mount is so close to the FW even that space is quickly filled with brackets and control lines for the throttle, carb, governor, spark plug harnesses, brake lines and possibly other hoses, wires, etc. I personally don't see any reason for mounting it anywhere else but the low spot in the fuel system, since that it where it is designed to go to catch and sump water in the fuel. Also, there is no low place on the FW where you can get any distance from the exhaust pipes. (Instead of a gascolator, I use an inline fuel filter on the engine side of the fuel selector valve. Although you can't drain the fuel for a visual inspection, I'm ok with that and I can easily get at it during the CI.)
Better yet, mount the gascolator first and work around it, but I would wait till you hang the engine and exhaust to drill any mounting holes.
I started by making a list of every item I planned to install on the engine and firewall and trying to establish a place for it. It is surprising the amount of things that you will need to fit in that small space.
Seems like I remember someone mounting a gascolator between the wing root and fuselage, but I'm not sure about that.
Good luck.
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Last edited by sf3543 : 04-09-2018 at 01:29 PM.
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  #7  
Old 04-10-2018, 07:27 AM
fixnflyguy fixnflyguy is offline
 
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Location: Winston-Salem, N.C.
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Default I have one on my -4...

I have one on my -4, LWR front of firewall attached to some standoffs to keep it vertical. I have a Vetterman 4- pipe, and it sits dead center between the pipes. I made a 1/2" hole in the lower cowl that I can insert a long needled tool into and drain it. After watching a Lancair with gascolator full of water flame out and crash land right after take-off (pilot didn't get hurt), I saw the true testament of a gascolator doing its job, but in his case, it was only accessible with cowling removed.
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  #8  
Old 04-10-2018, 12:02 PM
Michael Henning Michael Henning is offline
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Nashua, NH
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On my -4 I mounted the Andair gascolator center bottom of firewall. I also built a cooling shroud for it with a blast tube. It was difficult to drain, and then the drain started leaking when fuel pump was turned on. The lowest point in my fuel system is where the tank drains are. Before I even move my plane, I stick both tanks to check for water. Gascolator now sits on bench.
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  #9  
Old 04-10-2018, 01:53 PM
Lars Lars is online now
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
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Not the best photo, but the best I could manage with my phone, of the installation on my friend's RV-3. Looking forward toward the right portion of the lower cowl opening. Gascolator drain valve is visible just to the right of the braided stainless hose. The gascolator is on the firewall directly above. This is an early RV-3 with fuselage fuel tank only.

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  #10  
Old 04-10-2018, 06:05 PM
David Paule David Paule is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Boulder, CO
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Thanks, everyone!

I've decided to make my own. It will be mounted on the floor in front of the spar bulkhead, and be accessible from outside the airplane. It will have a more straight-forward, easier locking device. Like the Aerolab in some major ways, it'll be considerably simpler. In fact, it'll be homebuilt.

Dave
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