Friday, July 9, 2010

Replaced a lifter

I've been going back and forth with Chris at Maintenance Express about the lifter issue.  Chris called TCM and they said that if the lifter has less than 10% of the face spalled, leave it be, otherwise replace it.  Chris described mine as being way less than 10%... in fact he said he wouldn't even call it "spalling".  It's basically about 10-20 pin sized holes or "pits", with the exception of the one that is chipped.  We decided to replace the chipped lifter only.  Hopefully that's where the metal came from and my next change will be clean, but given that there is the beginning of some pitting on the cam lobes, it looks like I'm not too far off from a major overhaul.

My plan is to baby the engine along and hope for the best.  I knew when I bought the plane that it had sat for a few years getting very little use, hence the very low time airframe and my incredibly "good deal".  Flying 6 hours in two years was okay for the airframe since it is corrosion proofed and was resting in a hangar, but was not so great for the engine.  This type of spalling is caused by metal corrosion due to moisture in the engine.  The best thing for an engine is to run regularly... at least once a week or so according to all the engine gurus I have spoken with about this issue.  If it's going to sit for a month or so it really should be filled with special "pickling" oil to stave off the corrosion.  Also when I eventually get the motor overhauled, I'm going to consider some kind of dehumidifier for the hangar... what the heck, electric is included!  There is a reason why all the airlines park their out of service airplanes down in Phoenix and not in Florida.

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