The Domino Effect

In my previous post, I talked about my obsession for need to know how my engine is performing. I addressed this by installing a comprehensive engine monitoring systems. With that task behind me, I redirected my attention to the engine accessories. I searched through the logs, and found quite recent magneto service entries; however, there were no similar entries for the starter or the generator.  This was a bit of a surprise, remember, this is a 1961 vintage aircraft.

There is the saying, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Well, both my starter and the generator were working, but I wanted to make sure that they are still in decent condition. While starter may not be crucial to flight, it sure would be annoying to lose my generator. Since everything was apart anyway, Don removed the two “heavy weights” for me, and I headed for the repair shop. I asked the shop to give me an estimate, but they were reluctant to give one, not knowing what they may find. With the service done, and I mean service, not an overhaul, the cost was so close to what a new set would cost me that I donated the two clunkers to the repair shop in lieu of the labour cost, and replaced them with new units.

New lightweight starter installed

Picture showing the new starter installed on the engine

The starter went in first followed by the alternator. These new units are approved replacements and are much lighter, always a good thing.

Alternator installed

Installed alternator with some of the supplied installation hardware showing

The alternator came well equipped with all the appropriate installation hardware, and an electronic voltage regulator. The total replacement cost came to around $300 more than what I would have to pay for the old serviced equipment.

Electronic voltage regulator

Electronic voltage regulator that came with the alternator

I then directed my attention to the oil filtration. My engine had the original oil screen “filter” setup. Don advised me that it would be a good idea to replace it with a proper oil filter. There are several approved adapters available so I ordered one. It seemed a bit pricey, but when it arrived, I was pleasantly surprised. This was one beautifully made unit, machined from a solid aluminum billet, and worth every nickel.

Oil filter with the adapter

Oil filter adapter with a filter installed

I already mentioned in one of my previous posts that I was not too crazy about the interior styling and color scheme; however, I also did not like the lack of proper access to some of the components requiring regular inspection and service. I will address those issues in one of my next posts.

1 thought on “The Domino Effect

  1. Ed,
    I noticed a new shiny starter and an alternator. I’m sure glad you have deep pockets! But here’s the problem, with them being right upfront, what happens when you get some ugly bugs on them?
    Mind you, I’m sure you’re ahead of me there, all you need is a wet rag in the back of the plane to wipe things clean when you land somewhere….

    Sorry, could’nt resist, Sieg.

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