Flight Testing:

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March 29th, 2008:

Flight Hours: .2 ground time

Total Hours: 3.4

Why Oregon is not the best place to test fly...

 

Good vibrations... (err, BAD)

Since the weather resembled mid-winter, I set out today to prepare for next weeks propeller balancing. I arrived at the airport equipped with some injector flush equipment, a fresh set of NGK spark plugs, a new primary fuel filter and some Mobil, 5w-30, mineral oil.

The idea being to ensure the engine is running in top condition during the propeller balance. I chose to flush the injectors and replace the spark plugs after wondering all week about the misfire codes, "maybe I was really experiencing misfire?".

The injector flush is a chemical from Moc used in automobiles. It is administered from a pressurized, regulated container directly into the fuel rail with the fuel pumps, feed line and return line removed and capped. The engine is then started and run while about a pint of the flush fluid is run through the injectors. This takes about 45 minutes if you run an entire container through.

I initially warmed the engine up by running it on avgas. Once warm I switched to the flush fluid. During the avgas run, I could consistently get the misfire codes to turn the check engine light on through certain RPM ranges. When I switched to the flush fluid, the misfire codes were present for the first 10 minutes, getting further apart as time went on. Approximately 15 minutes into the flush, the misfire codes would not come back. I continued to run the flush fluid until 20 minutes had elapsed. At that point the engine already felt smoother than when I started.

The funny part about all of this is that I started this procedure without knowing that the engine wasn't running as smooth as it should. I guess you could say I was acclimated to a Lycosaurus before the test.

After completing the flush procedure, I replaced the spark plugs and the primary fuel filter and reconnected the fuel lines. When I re-started the engine N466DM felt like a whole new plane compared to all the other times I had the engine running. Changing the engine oil completed my work for the day.

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