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Downunder

Successful auto conversion engine? Certified?..... and a diesel at that!

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I was watching you tube vids of a bloke flying around the world in a Diamond twin (DA 42 NG).

My interest in the engine was struck on 3 occasions. First at start up, it just kicked and ran dead smooth like starting a car. (Full single lever FADEC operation, so easy )

Second, he was filling up with Jet A but it was obviously not a turbine, and third when he had a prop strike (on a raised landing light) and only required the wooden MT prop blade to be replaced (geared engine). Lucky as it was at some remote island in the pacific.

 

The engines are Austro AE300 modified Mercedes car engines.

 

 

They now have an 1800 hr tbo Austro Engine AE330 receives EASA certificate for 1,800 hour TBO

 

For me, these engines are everything I think an aviation engine should be and a finger to those traditionalists that think it can't be done.

Welcome to 2019....and the 21st century.

 

Interestingly it looks a bit like the "slant" Suzuki set up that Aeromomentum use...

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Most of the 65 diamonds in oz appere to be Lyc power.

This one Investigation: AO-2017-090 - Collision with terrain involving Diamond DA40, VH-YPQ, near Port Macquarie Airport, NSW on 8 September 2017 had the Austro engine. Need to know emergency procedures from memory wether it's a Boeing or a bug smasher.

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Several Diesel Diamind Twin trainers now operate in our area and visit YQDI airport. Elegant aircraft, slender wings and impressively quiet.

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If this little MB slant 4 can do this imagine what could be done with the MB V6 (3.2 L) or any of the other Euro diesel V6's

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At Oshkosh 2018 Contenital had a certified auto diesel - tipped the $ scale at $100000 plus and at a guess this engine would be the same

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At Oshkosh 2018 Contenital had a certified auto diesel - tipped the $ scale at $100000 plus and at a guess this engine would be the same

Diamond have chosen the Continental CD 300 for their DA 50 aircraft....(far bigger and more powerful than the Austro engines)

Hopefully the success of these engines will trickle the technology down into more affordable engines....

https://www.diamondaircraft.com/en/about-diamond/newsroom/news/article/diamond-aircraft-da50-program-changes-and-new-engine/

 

If this little MB slant 4 can do this imagine what could be done with the MB V6 (3.2 L) or any of the other Euro diesel V6's

Continental CD 300.... https://www.continentalmotors.aero/diesel/engines/cd300.aspx

Ok, not a MB, but a large "V" config diesel.....

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Maybe there is going to be a new era of diesel (Jet A) auto conversions coming into the aviation engine experimental arena?

The next step for Viking, Momentum, et al........

 

So......who wants to borrow me a mill or so...... to be the first cab off the rank...lol.

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Diamond have chosen the Continental CD 300 for their DA 50 aircraft....(far bigger and more powerful than the Austro engines)

Hopefully the success of these engines will trickle the technology down into more affordable engines....

https://www.diamondaircraft.com/en/about-diamond/newsroom/news/article/diamond-aircraft-da50-program-changes-and-new-engine/

 

 

Continental CD 300.... https://www.continentalmotors.aero/diesel/engines/cd300.aspx

Ok, not a MB, but a large "V" config diesel.....

 

 

Wow!!!! - strange that it just happens to have about the same CC 's as both the MB & VW V6's. - wonder if they will ever come up with a smaller variant say in the 2-2.5 L range.

 

One other thing - why two turbos in an aviation application ? - aircraft dont need fast "spool up" and it may simplify things (plumbing, pressure balance etc) to have just the one.

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These engine's have a TBR, time between replacment. what is going to happen in ten years when the original auto manufacturer has moved on to a new model. Is the common rail hp pump duplicated. CESSNA dropped the diesel skyhawk which continental claimed would save 3% in total costs over 6000 hours.

 

https://www.aopa.org/news-and-media/all-news/2018/may/09/cessna-discontinues-turbo-skyhawk-jt-a

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One other thing - why two turbos in an aviation application ? - aircraft dont need fast "spool up" and it may simplify things (plumbing, pressure balance etc) to have just the one.

I like the idea of twin turbos on a "split bank" type engine. It cleans up so much and is a more compact setup. Having them high allows straight oil drain to the sump without scav pumps and hoses. Exhaust is extremely simple. Oil feed system does not need valving to stop syphoning/draining. (914 has a check valve on inlet to turbo. When it fails the turbo fills with oil when not running )

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The Austro engine has a cast iron block to allow for rebuilds....

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All these Continental diesels are merely rebranded and reworked Thielert-Centurion diesel engines, which are all based on Mercedes car engines, although they are heavily reworked for aviation use.

 

The CD-300 is the reworked Thielert-Centurion 3.0 engine, which is based on the Mercedes OM642 automotive engine, which is fitted to a range of Jeeps, Dodge and Chrysler products, and a wide range of Mercedes cars and vans.

 

Thielert Centurion - Wikipedia

 

Mercedes-Benz OM642 engine - Wikipedia

 

I'm not entirely convinced these engines are the way forward, for light aviation power. I feel that they're merely a "fill-in", until electric power makes another surge forward, and becomes a very viable power option.

The sheer weight of the Mercedes aviation diesels is a definite drawback, it's a retrograde step, and merely gives the electric power option a better footing.

 

After all, an electric motor is superbly matched for aviation use, it requires no reduction gearbox, it provides rotary movement to the propellor directly with no reciprocating action power loss, very little noise, and would have a major extension in TBO, as compared to any reciprocating IC engine. Plus the recharge cost for batteries is only a fraction of liquid fuel costs.

 

There's an article in todays news about how Elon Musk is stating he will have electric cars with 1000km range, very shortly.

He's already tuned current models to be 10% more efficient, and the oil industry and IC engine manufacturers are in the same position today, as horse breeders and buggy builders were, in 1904.

 

Tesla's next-gen Roadster will exceed 1,000 km of battery range, says Elon Musk

 

I've also seen a figure of 89,000 Euros quoted for the CD-300. Not exactly a huge saving on overall engine costs, even if they are 2000 hr TBO engines.

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Onetrack - with reference to your "an electric motor is superbly matched for aviation use", I agree absolutely (when the battery matter is overcome, which will happen) but I do love a diesel in almost any application. Totally irrational but there you go - love is like that.

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Skipy, I'm a diesel man as well, I cut my teeth on them 55 years ago, and they provided me with income nearly all my working life.

Our family owned 55 major items of earthmoving equipment at one stage (all between 30 and 103 tonnes in weight), all powered with diesels, and I still love them.

However, we have to face the fact that major disruption occurs in technological advancements on a regular basis. The 21st Century will be the Electric Century.

These people below, are the ones we will need to look to. Their team is impressive, to say the least.

 

magniX | Electric Propulsion of Tomorrow

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I think a place for jet fuel diesel ICE's will remain as long as the fuel remains cheap and plentiful (The airliners ultimately see to that), but petrol engines will diminish.

Supercapacitors are the possibly the next big thing....

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\\\\\not all are happy with Diesels !.

I met a farmer (between Dubbo & Burk ) that absolutely hates them, Only because, if he has a problem with a ( brand spanking new) diesel machine, it take's three days for the mechanic to get to him & look at the problem,

Then goes back to the shop (Dealer ) & report problem, second mechanic arrives ( at least one week later ) with a Few tools to remove offending part, & returns home.

Two Three even four weeks later. ! . third mechanic arrives with (supposedly ) the new part. and repairs said machine . ( has known wrong part more than once )

All in the heat of his harvest.

Now, new machine arrives, He rings neighbour to come & remove that new diesel, & replace it with an OLD second-hand Holden V8.

Never seen so many shiny diesels left in paddocks anywhere !.

At $5 million a crop a couple of weeks waiting can be disastrous.

spacesailor

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\\\\\not all are happy with Diesels !.

 

Yeah! I have heard of this - Its not really a diesel problem more a marketing control of product after sale matter. The big (& they are nearly all big these days) machinery companies like John Deere dont so much sell you a machine as lease it. You break all sorts of warranties etc if you try & work on it yourself (even if you or your mechanic are fully qualified). In effect it means the "owner" is completely subject to the companies control, in regard to servicing & repair, by their staff only - so you wait in line for their people to do their thing, with little regard to your schedule (harvest).

 

Never seen so many shiny diesels left in paddocks anywhere !. Tell me where - I am on my way.

 

spacesailor

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The 2015 AOPA article below gives extensive test flight information on the Continental CD-135 diesel in the Cessna.

It appears that Mercedes no longer supply the diesel engines, ready-built from the factory - Continental now build the diesel themselves, but utilise a range of Mercedes components in the build.

What is also interesting is that there is no engine overhaul, once time-expired - you are up for a new replacement engine. That must throw the economics of these engines out the window.

 

Little diesel, big fuel savings

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Rotax have priced themselves out of rebuilding their 912 engines and haven't suffered particularly.

The advantages are, you sell the complete expired engine as a discount to a brand new engine and in the end, well, you have a brand new engine in your aircraft.

 

My neighbours rebuilt or exchanged (not sure which) their non turbo continental 520(?) in a Bonanza at a cost of $70 000 aud for the engine with all up costs running into the 90's, so just because it CAN be rebuilt, doesn't mean it is exceedingly cheaper to do so.

I'm unsure if there are insurance advantages with a new engine also verses rebuilt....

 

You would also assume higher reliability from a new engine.

There would have to be a higher risk factor with human and part error with rebuilt engines.

Companies do not need to set up extensive rebuilding facilities, trained staff and overhaul spares.

 

On the surface it seems costly not to rebuild but plenty of other items exist economically in our "throw away" society.

Even with cars, it is cheaper to replace with new than keep forking out for expensive mechanics and spare parts.

 

My employment in the mining industry has seen much change. No longer do you see maintenance workshops filled with lathes, drills an milling machines (and actual machinists). Equipment, pumps etc are not repaired but replaced.

eg. A pump runs for 5 years then fails. You go to the warehouse, book out a new one, install, and we're good to go for another 5...

Not all the time as some equipment is sent off to specialist repairers and obviously some stripped and parts replaced on site.

 

So overall the "economics" of replace over repair are increasingly viable. ... welcome to the 21st century.

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"Even with cars, it is cheaper to replace with new than keep forking out for expensive mechanics and spare parts."

Another Government interference,

BackYard mechanics, under fire. Modified vehicles under scrutiny, and only certain mods allowed.

When my Pajero Mass Air Flow Sensor, failed, my favorite B,Y, mechanic took a couple of minutes to find the problem, And a day to replace with a cheaper (than Mitsi) part.

Touch a new car's anatomy & kiss away your so-called (expensive) warranty.

spacesailor (the would be Mechanic In the fifty's)

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What engine IS foolproof?

 

That engine is a Thielert. They went broke and it has not been fitted to Diamond aircraft for 10 years....

The engine I describe here is the Austro....

Diamond did something similar to Jabiru. After Thielert folded, they put up the money to get the Austro engine designed and built.

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What engine IS foolproof?

 

That engine is a Thielert. They went broke and it has not been fitted to Diamond aircraft for 10 years....

The engine I describe here is the Austro....

Diamond did something similar to Jabiru. After Thielert folded, they put up the money to get the Austro engine designed and built.

 

I was saying it is foolish not to follow the POH. (aircraft with flat battery)

Having read the relevant section of the 464page POH I can see how this accident could happen.

 

A simple warning at the beginning of the section 4B.8.2

ONLY THE LEFT ENGINE MAY BE STARTED WITH EXTERNAL POWER

EXTERNAL POWER MUST BE DISCONNECTED AND THE RIGHT ENGINE STARTED WITH SHIPS POWER.

IF THE RIGHT ENGINE FAILS TO START THE BATTERY MUST BE REPLACED.

This would alert pilot's who may not be electrically savy to the danger of a weak or defective battery in an aircraft totally reliant on the battery.

 

There is a warning about having the seat back locked when performing the external power start.

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Some 5 years ago, Benalla GlidingClub had a tug fitted with an LS1 V8 operating under a limited hour experimental CASA permit from memory.

 

Cheers,

 

Jack.19A035DE-8224-46EF-B3E7-5BBA26883134.thumb.jpeg.287c5b06e321ee85b148d60eb3a27d34.jpeg

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