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Author Topic: Doing more each Annual:  (Read 632 times)

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Flying Dan

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Doing more each Annual:
« on: October 05, 2017, 08:41:50 AM »
Dunno about most, but I do as much as legally possible when maintaining my aircraft.  Each Annual, I pick up a few new skills from my A&PI, reading, doing etc.  This saves money and keeps me very close to the mechanical condition of my aircraft.  Plus, Iím a gear head anyway and just love to work on anything mechanical.

This year I picked up a Compression Differential gauge and Dual Timing indicator.  Iíve use a Comp Diff gauge many times over the years = easy.  Timing is similar.

Question for other who use a Comp Diff gauge: My little air compressor will only supply 80psig if itís running just before it shuts off @90psig.  Itís a bit of a trick to bleed it off enough so it kicks on, then open the valve on the gauge before it shuts off to keep the compressor running.  It works, but little annoying.

I donít want to drop a bunch of money on a big compressor.  Anyone have any recommendations for something still portable, but will supply better air CFM?
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aftCG

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2017, 09:51:20 AM »
About 4 years ago I picked up a Harbor Freight compressor that seemed substantial enough.  I hated it.  It was loud as hell.

I remembered my dad used to have this giant beast that looked like it had been on a WWI battle ship.  Chugga, chugga, chugga type.

I did some searching on my local craigslist and bought the biggest, oldest compressor I could find.  Not as cool as the old man's but much better. 

$100.  I've gotten my money out of it and then some.

It has a regulator with twin gauges which indicated that I can get 100 psi (they read higher but that's the most I can get out of it).  I'm honestly not sure how accurate the number is.  I've bought a differential (and conventional) compression tester but have only used it once to find a bad cylinder on a motorcycle.  My test gauges showed I was hitting 90psi with some leaks in the hose fittings, etc.

will moffitt

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2017, 06:47:39 PM »
You could hook up the hose to  tee on a beer keg or other tank creating a larger reservoir so there is a longer time between cycles. 

will

Flying Dan

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2017, 06:17:55 AM »
Will, a buddy of mine suggested the very same thing.  I've got an O2 bottle that should do the trick.

My shop has a ver nice compressor, but the hangar I like things to be small and portable.  Although, I could've bought a slightly larger compressor.  I was thinking tires, not anything else at the time.
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hotrod180

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2017, 09:18:11 AM »
You could hook up the hose to  tee on a beer keg or other tank creating a larger reservoir so there is a longer time between cycles.   

I was thinking the same thing, not sure if there'd be enough improvement to make it worth the hassle though.
Can the cut-off on your compressor be set any higher than 90?
I too have a small compressor-- I think it's set a bit higher than that,
but it still needs to kick on during a compression test.
 PITA if someone's helping you and you're trying to communicate.
I used to do the comp test by myself on my 320 Lycoming,
but I find it awkward with my C180, so I usually enlist a helper.

FWIW I think it's a great idea for people to get involved with the maintenance repairs & inspections on their airplane.
Whether you're a gearhead or not, it is a great way to get to know your airplane (and how it works) better.
With the right mechanic, it's also a good way to save you some money- a secondary benefit.
Some mechanics don't want the owner to assist or be more than marginally involved, but that's their prerogative--
There's a lot of mechanics out there, some not only don't mind or but even welcome owner participation.

« Last Edit: October 06, 2017, 09:22:26 AM by hotrod180 »

Flying Dan

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2017, 06:52:11 AM »
Annual is done!

A&PI's who do owner assists are getting harder to find.  I like my A&PI (Jim), he spends time with me, reviews things I should know, picks at my work etc.  I wouldn't have it any other way.

Used my little comp which worked fine as long as it was running.  The pressure shutoff is fixed.  If I only have to do this once a year, it'll work.  The other 364 days it fills low tires.
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aftCG

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2017, 11:55:57 AM »
Care to PM me his details?

Flying Dan

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2017, 12:29:50 PM »
PM Sent.
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Tom-D.

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2017, 10:29:11 PM »
A&PI's who do owner assists are getting harder to find.

I still do. When you aren't too far away.

groupw

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2017, 11:10:25 AM »
Shortly after I got my plane I bought this air compressor for the hangar: https://www.homedepot.com/p/Porter-Cable-6-Gal-150-PSI-Portable-Air-Compressor-C2002/203162815. It's been reliably used for cylinder compression checks, pumping up tires, running a spark plug cleaner, and general air gun blowing. It easily produces more than 100 psi. I don't think the tank has enough capacity to run most air power tools, paint sprayers, and the like, but I don't use it for that. It's pretty loud when it runs, but not deafening, and I think it's similar to most units its size.

Roy

Flying Dan

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Re: Doing more each Annual:
« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2017, 06:32:39 AM »
Roy,

That is what I should have purchased, I got something almost exactly like this one:
https://www.homedepot.com/p/Husky-2-Gal-Electric-Hotdog-Air-Compressor-0100211A/206470707
It works for a comp diff check, but just barely.  An extra $50-50 would've had me a much better unit.

Hopefully if others read this before buying a little compressor, it can help them make a good choice.
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