Trip report: Grenchen, Switzerland Beech 3NM

Discuss Pratt & Whitney 985, Hamilton Standard and Hartzell propellers

Trip report: Grenchen, Switzerland Beech 3NM

Postby Taigh Ramey » Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:49 pm

This is a post that I made on Beech Talk on March 25th, 2010, and I decided to copy it here:

Steve, one of my awesome mechanics, and I are here in Switzerland changing two engines and doing an inspection on a Beech 3NM (Canadian or ex RCAF Beech 18) for one of our favorite customers.

I thought I would post some photos of the trip so far:

We arrived last Monday morning and the owner wanted me to do some flight training with a new pilot. I thought it would be a lot better to do it with the old engines instead of the new ones so off we went. We did all the usual air work along with some full feather cycles on both engines, okay not at the same time, and a bunch of single engine work in the pattern. He did great, and no wonder as he is a test pilot, instructor, formation check airman here who has been flying everything in the Swiss Air Force for several decades now. A great guy who is real down to earth especially for a jet jock and he was a lot of fun to fly with.

After ringing out the Beech pretty hard we put her in the hangar and began pulling the engines off of the firewalls.

Image

By Monday night we had both engines disconnected and one on the floor. Not bad for starting after lunch.

With the old engines off and the new ones uncrated we began the preparations to hang the QEC's.

Image

QEC's are Quick Engine Change kits that we built up back at our shop in Stockton, CA. Instead of having to swap all of the components from one engine to another we built up two "new engines" and all of the accessories, mounts dishpans ducting etc. The owner wanted all new parts so we supplied just that.

The firewalls were pretty rough and needed a lot of cleaning so the preparation work began.

Image

Hugo, the owner, loves to work on his Beech and here he is removing the old oil cooler so we can install the freshly overhauled unit.

Image

Here is Rene cleaning the firewalls and he did a great job as they turned out beautiful.

Image

Image

Fritz prepped, primed and painted the engine and oil cooler mountings.

Image

After the oil coolers were mounted the firewalls were ready to receive the QEC's.

Image

Hey Steve, which line connects the C-2 strainer to the fuel pump?

Image

It's the orange one of course...Jeez!!

Image

Since the fork lift broke down we had to resort to man power to hang the engine. Here is Hugo bringing the engine to the firewall:

Image

And everyone else had to get into the act namely: Fritz

Image

Rene

Image

And Steve

Image

What a bunch of jolly jokers. We are lucky to have such a great group of people to work with here.

I am beat after day four and I am going to bed now. If there is any interest I will post more tomorrow evening.

Taigh
Taigh Ramey
Site Admin
 
Posts: 78
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 3:14 pm

Re: Trip report: Grenchen, Switzerland Beech 3NM

Postby Taigh Ramey » Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:53 pm

Here is the next post from March 26th:

On Tuesday or Day two, we had both of the old engines off and began prepping for the installation of the new QEC's. Day three we hung the engines and began hooking up the hoses and rigging. This is the time consuming part.

Image

Image

Image

Q. How many mechanics does it take to line up the QEC?
A. All of them!

Image

Image

Image

Image

I am not sure about modern Beechcraft parts as I don't work on to many of them made after the model 18 but it has been my experience that factory new Beech 18 parts usually need some massaging to get them to fit. These QEC's were built from as many new old stock parts that we could find. I think we did better than 95% new which means we did a lot of massaging of Beech parts!

Here is Walter massaging parts! That tool should have a Beechcraft special too number on it.

Image

In all seriousness we were fortunate to have found so many original new parts to build up the QEC's. These engines look great. The engines were also built from all new parts except for the crank shafts. The cranks were one run, just like new, but every other part was out of a factory box and has never been run before. These engines are about as nice as they come and the good folks at Tulsa Aircraft Engines were kind enough to build them for us. Gotta love Sam and Rex.

We found the new, still in the can cylinders, valves, pistons etc and sent them off to Tulsa. Rex found all of the other parts and built and tested the R985's and sent them to our shop in Stockton. Steve built up the QEC's with all of the hoses you see and everything else. The exhaust is always a pain especially assembling the heat muffs around the exhaust stacks. Lots of massaging required!

Take a look at some of the details of the engines and the QEC's as I think they are a real work of art.

Image

The latest production R985 parts were made by Pratt & Whityney of Canada. We were fortunate that most of the parts that went into Hugo's engines were Canadian parts which is appropriate as his Beech is Canadian as well.

Image

Image

Here is the gang after day three.

Image

Day four was plumbing, rigging and exhaust installation with the same on day five (today). Props and lots of other loose ends to tie up tomorrow and hopefully first start tomorrow as well. Steve ate something bad at breakfast this morning and was laid up in the hotel room this afternoon, poor guy. Hopefully he will be feeling better tomorrow.

Time to go to bed again,

Taigh
Taigh Ramey
Site Admin
 
Posts: 78
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 3:14 pm

Re: Trip report: Grenchen, Switzerland Beech 3NM

Postby Taigh Ramey » Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:57 pm

Steve Oxman asked (tongue in cheek) me to label the hoses...so I did!

Steven Oxman wrote:Taigh:
These photos are fantastic - keep 'em coming!! Now - you need to digitally label the purpose of all those hoses for us. :) Steve



Your wish is my command:

Image

1-Positive air from the air oil separator to the firewall. this supplies the deice boots with air pressure
2-positive air from the vacuum pump to the air oil separator
3-prop alcohol
4-primer
5-oil from the governor to the feathering switch
6-manifold pressure
7-prop feather to nose case
8-air oil separator drain
9-crank case breather
10-prop feather oil supply
11-oil from the airwolf filter to the firewall (goes back to the oil tank)
12-fire extinguisher
13-fuel from fuel pump to carb
14-fuel pump base drain
15-vacuum pump yo vac pump regulator
16-oil pressure to instrument
17-governor oil pressure
18-fuel from C-2 strainer to fuel pump[/quote]
Taigh Ramey
Site Admin
 
Posts: 78
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 3:14 pm

Re: Trip report: Grenchen, Switzerland Beech 3NM

Postby Taigh Ramey » Fri Apr 09, 2010 5:01 pm

Here is the last installment of the Swiss trip:

Finally home from the two week trip and still trying to recover and answer all of the e-mails.

We started Monday afternoon and had the new engines installed and rigged by the next Monday. We even took Sunday off for a day of sight seeing! Early Tuesday morning we ran the engines with two squawks: a dead left manifold pressure and right tachometer indication. Blowing out the MP line fixed that problem (some cleaning fluid made its way into the line during firewall cleaning). Swapping two wires on the right tach wiring harness from the firewall to the tach generator fixed the lack of RPM (we accidentally made two left harnesses). All in all not bad.

Here are a few photos from the trip.

First engine runs

Image

Check out the prop tip vortices's in the early morning cold air. They are only visible from a certain angle of the sun. Pretty cool. Yes rebushing the gear doors is on the list of things to fix.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbECOgy1dYw[/youtube]

All ready for the first flight on the new engines

Image

Our first flight was over the airport for 50 minutes to be sure everything was working well. The only thing to adjust was the RPM which was a little too high. You can only check this when the engines reach full RPM at the end of the takeoff roll or shortly after.

What a nice thing to see on that flight.

Image

Hugo was very pleased and he brought everyone Pratt & Whitney shirts for a post first flight celebration.

Image


After the first flight we pulled the cowling to check everything out and it looked great. Not a single drip to be found anywhere. We went back up to put some time on the new engines and flew around to see some of the sights at the same time.

Here is the town of Solothurn from the air which was built between 1530 and 1792 (according to the Internet) which we toured on the ground the Sunday previous. Check out the walled city with the towers on the corners. What history!

Image

After putting time on the new engines we felt comfortable enough to venture over toward the Alps for some more sight seeing. This is Lake Geneva

Image

Image

We flew into Sion to meet with one of the pilots who is checking out in the Twin Beech. Philip is the Swiss equivalent of a Top Gun who flies everything in the Swiss Air Force. He is also the only formation check pilot in Switzerland. We flew the pattern around Sion which was a kick to do. I don't think there is a single standard pattern in Switzerland because of terrain and noise. You vary your pattern around small towns and settlements as well as the geographical features so every pattern presents its own unique challenges. It is a lot of fun.

Here is the approach to Sion.

Image

Just to the right of final is a mountain with two castles on top the Basilique de Valère and Château de Tourbillon

Image

Gotta love an airplane with an Astrodome to give you a different perspective while flying.

Image

Image

On one of the maintenance flights I was able to put Fritz in the left seat for a while. Fritz is Hugo's chief of maintenance and an all around good guy (everyone we worked with in Switzerland were wonderful). I believe this was his was his first time actually flying an airplane over his own country. He did great too! Well done Fritz.

Image

We were getting ready for another flight in the Beech so here we are getting her out of the hangar. Check out the Grand Daddy of all Lazy Susan's, or should that be the Grandma...? Maybe you could put one in your hangar?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9kKABEMewEk[/youtube]

What a great day to go flying!

Image

I got out of the right seat so Steve could check out the sights from up front. This was his first time out of the US and what a way to get your feet wet. Hugo gave him and the rest of us the executive tour through the Alps. I think it is safe to say that Steve had a good time!

Image

Image

Image

Here is a video of Steve getting a tour through the Apls with Hugo.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lp6xqQy2fR4[/youtube]

One happy owner; which was our goal. Thanks for the work Hugo and for the awesome tour of your beautiful country.

Image
Taigh Ramey
Site Admin
 
Posts: 78
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 3:14 pm

Re: Trip report: Grenchen, Switzerland Beech 3NM

Postby randall dunkley » Sat Apr 10, 2010 10:10 pm

Taigh : Great coverage and some fine photography. I did some minor help when the guys at Stead changed an engine on the Lockheed Loadstar (Howard). Being an auto tech it is simply amazing that it requires so many connections on those radials. The fact you were able to find so many new parts is impressive. Randy
randall dunkley
 
Posts: 55
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:25 pm


Return to Beech 18 engine and propeller

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron