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Mike Koerner

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About Mike Koerner

  • Rank
    Co-Pilot Member

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  • Location
    Palos Verdes, CA
  • Interests
    flying, soaring, sailing, climbing
  • Gender
    Male

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  1. Mike Koerner

    market analysis

    Hatter, Tell me again what your modified landing light system is. Mine is shitty. I couldn't see the side of a barn on the runway right in front of me. Mike
  2. Mike Koerner

    912 ignition modules

    It's just tender loving care its after Buckaroo, like the rest of us. If you put a rubber band around it and slipped a couple Benjamin's under the band it would probably start fine too. Mike
  3. Mike Koerner

    Oil overheating

    Put the program for the outline of the arcs into your 3-D printer, fill the 3-D printer’s binder cartridge with acetone instead, carefully position the sticky-back vinyl sheet with the pre-printed arcs onto the 3-D printer's platen, then, with no media on the tray, let the 3-D printer dissolve the vinyl around the edges of the arcs. Or, just put the acetone into one of your inkjet printer's cartridges, black for example. Then outline the part in black before you print it. Alternately, Use the 3-D printer with the outline of the arcs to make a plastic die, then program a plug that just barely fits inside it with a couple guide pins. Set the pre-printed sticky-back vinyl between the two and whack the assembly with a hammer. I have no idea if these ideas will work… but you should try them anyway. Be careful with the acetone though. It may dissolve parts of your printers too. (My wife's cat pee'd on my inkjet and despite my best efforts to clean it, it quite working a few days later.) Mike Koerner
  4. Mike Koerner

    Oil overheating

    Thanks ib. I'm impressed by all your projects... but you make me feel lazy. Mike
  5. Mike Koerner

    Oil overheating

    ib, Your labels look beautiful. I want to make some too. What printer do you use (an ink jet?) and what “clear vinyl sticky back printer stock”? Mike Koerner
  6. Just kidding Buckaroo... about the light, not about how long it's been since the last sync or carb adjustment was made. I guess you just wait until you don't like the idle speed or it runs rough. Mike Koerner
  7. Mine have not been synced in over 3 1/2 years (478 hours). I'm waiting for the "SYNC" light to come on. Mike Koerner
  8. Here! Here! In he current issue of EAA magazine the Rainbow Aviation folks said some people had shortened the actuation shafts on Rotax fuel pumps thinking they were going to make them work better. Yikes! Mike Koerner
  9. Mike Koerner

    Why would you pick CT over Cirrus?

    1) For my mission, which includes looking at the ground from (slightly) above, I would only consider a high-wing and I would prefer no strut. The visibility out a CT - over the nose, toward the corner and almost straight down to the side - is fantastic. 2) My mission also includes long cross-country flights, but I like flying so I'm not in a big hurry. In fact, I often cruise at low rpm settings. 3) I'm cheap. The variable cost (fuel, maintenance and engine rebuild) of my CT is well less than $30/hour. I would not enjoy flying as much, or fly as often, if the hourly cost was way higher than this. 4) I like the CT's short takeoffs and landings. I'm at 1000 feet by the far end of the runway and always make the first turnoff on landing. It's almost as if there is no runway too short. 5) I like the CT's long range - well over 800 miles. I feel like I can go somewhere and if I don't like it, because of bad weather for example, I can just turn around and come back (don’t ever take off in bad weather and be sure to turn around before doing so becomes sketchy). 6) I like the CT's wide c.g. and weight range. I have never run into a loading issue. 7) Between landing at under 40 knots, very forgiving low speed handling and the chute; I think the CT is incredibly safe (despite a recent spate of unfortunate incidents). 8] I like the instantaneous engine starts and the fast engine acceleration. You can catch a bounced landing before the second bounce! 9) I believe in most of the major design trades made by Flight Design and Rotax: Aircraft should be made of carbon fiber, heads should be water-cooled and props should never be attached to a crankshaft. Mike
  10. Mike Koerner

    Glider tape question?

    Buck, When Roger said, "No Change" he actually meant, "No perceptible change" - nothing you're going to notice. It would take a well-instrumented, long-term statistical analysis to measure any difference. But wing tape will reduce stall speed, increase climb rate, increase airspeed at any given prop rpm, and reduce fuel consumption at any given airspeed... but not by very much. My guess - and this is really just a guess - is less than 0.25% better performance - less than a gallon of fuel saved every hundred hours? The gap between the wing and fuselage allows the high-pressure air underneath the wing to leak through to the top surface. Without a comparable drag reduction, this reduces the effective wing area by something close to the width of the gap - perhaps a bit more due to lateral flow into the gap, or a bit less due to restrictions in the air flow through the gap. “Ah,” you say, “My gap is only about 1/32” on each side, which is 30 times less than 0.25% of the span.” Yes, but the real problem comes on top of the wing where the higher-pressure air is injected into the airstream causing interference drag and turbulence. You said it when you called it "Glider tape". The latest generation of competition sailplanes costs between $150K and $250K. The pilots buying these ships are expecting maybe 2-4% better performance, 1 or 2 L/D points. Meanwhile, a roll of 3M white vinyl electrical tape costs a couple dollars at Home Depot. I have never seen a competition sailplane pilot who didn't tape his wings before flight, even when he wasn't in a contest. Tom mentions taping one side. Indeed, you can probably achieve the vast majority of the benefit with half as much tape. Again though, a sailplane pilot is never going to do this. Mike Koerner
  11. Mike Koerner

    iFly 740b Install

    I sure love mine. iFly is an innovative small company with very responsive customer service. The people who answer the phone are light aircraft pilots who use the product every day. A couple times I've called with questions the owner answered the phone. Also, though I still have a bunch of Garmin products, and they're obviously innovative too, I'm mad about what I consider their unfounded attack on Uavionix. We'll all be poorer as a result of the stifled competition. Mike Koerner
  12. Mike Koerner

    N527TS Fuel Contamination

    ia, I know nothing about the aircraft or the pilot in the report you linked. I'm not even sure the report indicates water in the fuel. Corrosion on the carburator slide could be from water condensing out of the air as the plane sits on the ground. I'll respond to your question on water in the fuel anyway: The report indicates the aircraft was using aviation fuel. Water separates out of aviation fuel like 100LL. It's heavier so it will drop to the bottom of the wing tanks and then out the wing drains to the gascolator. The gascolator is designed to separate and collect the water. It has a drain on the bottom to allow you to periodically remove any water that it accumulates. If you are using aviation fuel, before each flight you should check for water in the gascolator by draining a bit into a glass. Again, it separates from the fuel so it will readily show up in the bottom of the glass. If you’re not sure what it looks like, just add a little water to the fuel the first time so you get the picture. If there is water present, drain some more fuel out until the fuel runs clean. Cessnas have drains under each wing to check for water. We don't and we have less dihedral. So, it might be a good idea to walk out to a wing tip and rock the plane back and forth a few times to encourage the water to flow down into the gascolator. That said, the fuel lines are so small I'm not sure how effective this will be. Water may already be in the fuel you use to fill the plane. This is seldom a problem but something to consider at little airports where the fuel may sit around a while. More commonly, the water comes into your tanks separately. Maybe you leave the plane outside and one of the fuel cap seals is leaking allowing rain water to get in. Most commonly, moisture gets in the tanks through the vents as the tanks "breathe". Fuel contracts as it cools, such as during the night. As a result, air is sucked into the tanks to maintain the ambient pressure. Some of the water vapor in the air may condense inside the tanks. The next day the fuel warms up and some air is expelled but the liquid water has already fallen to the bottom of the tank. Interestingly, water ingestion will be greatly increased if the plane is left setting outside, uncovered on a clear, still night. This is because the aircraft radiates heat to deep space. It gets colder than it would in a hangar. In fact, the surface gets colder than the ambient air temperature which enhances both the air ingestion and water condensation in the tanks. Common guidance is to keep your tanks topped off to reduce water ingestion. I'm skeptical of the effectiveness of this. More fuel means more thermal contraction and thus more air and water vapor entering the tanks. The only advantage would be that the larger heat capacity of the full fuel tanks reduces the temperature swing. Finally, planes in humid or coastal areas (like Wisconsin, or the LA basin) are much more susceptible than aircraft in dryer climates (like desert areas, or even Van Nuys). Aircraft using unleaded fuels blended with alcohol (most autofuel in the US) are much less susceptible. This is because the water dissolves in the alcohol, which is dissolved in the fuel. The water doesn't separate and causes no problem to engine operation. There is a limit to how much water can dissolve in the alcohol but it doesn't seem likely that we will reach that limit (unless the fuel caps are left off in the rain). I use autofuel almost exclusively and have never seen water in my fuel. In fact, I seldom bother to check for it. Has anyone reached the water saturation level with autofuel? Mike Koerner
  13. Mike Koerner

    Garmin files suit against uAvionix

    Dave, Andy, I'm not a patent attorney, but I do have some experience in this area. 🙂 The summary section of Garmin's patent has no bearing in their suit against Uavonix. They have to prove Uavonix infringed on at least one of their claims. The claims are grouped with independent claims being the broadest, and then dependent claims building on to each of these. If Uavonix's approach is different than that described in an independent claim, then the subsequent dependent claims are academic as well. Independent claim 1 of Garmin's 301 patent describes, "receiving ... a transmission from the transponder of the aircraft" and "extracting information from the transmission". Variations in the power into the transponder is not a transmission from it. If Uavonix is really using this input power method of determining the squawk code, then I don't think they are infringing on this claim or its subsequent dependent claims (2-5). Independent claim 6 again describes receiving, "transmissions from a transponder of the aircraft," and "a processing system operable to cause the information to be extracted from the received transmission". Again, Uavonix claims to be using a different method so the dependent claims (7-10) don't matter either. Independent claim 11 also describes "a receiver operable to periodically receive a transmission from the transponder" and "a processing system operable to cause the information to be extracted from the received transmission". Once again, Uavonix is claiming to use a different process. The subsequent dependent claims (12-17) also become moot. That's all the claims there are. I don't believe Garmin has grounds for a suit unless Uavonix is not really using the method described in their patent application. I'm not an EE and frankly I don't even know if the method Uavonix describes is possible. With alternators whirling around sending pulses to the bus, and strobe lights flashing, and CT owners adding big capacitors to their electrical systems - it seems like a long shoot that you could pick out the squawk code from the noise. On the other hand, the squawk pulse sequence maybe at a much higher frequency than these other perturbations and differentiation from noise is one of the advantages of digital transmissions. GPS signals, for example, are fantastically tiny, yet our devices are able to pick them out of the noise. Where the summary section of Garmin's patent comes into play is in establishing prior art. Though this doesn't help in enforcing the patent, it may keep others from receiving patents which could restrict Garmin's freedom to practice. So, the fact that the Garmin's patent discusses "using information from a transponder and including this information in an ADS-B data stream" may make the Uavonix application null and void. It depends on if the courts find the Uavonix approach "obvious" based on the comments in Garmin's patent. Personally, I think the Uavonix approach is anything but obvious, but this part of patent law is very subjective. So, you may ask, why didn't Garmin use the phrase "using information from a transponder and including this information in an ADS-B data stream" in one of the independent claims. They probably tried to. The patent office may have found this claim too broad. Perhaps it was already in pratice, as you suggest. At any rate, whether Uavonix receives a patent or not is academic in this case. You don't need a patent to make a product; you just need it to preclude other people from doing the same thing. In fact, it may be that Uavonix has already given up on their patent. It is very unusual to publicly disclose the details of a patent application before the patent is issued. Then again, as I mentioned earlier, they are in a dire strait. With the 2020 mandate fast approaching they need to convince the public that they will still be in business next year. That means they have to show that Garmin's suit is invalid; and they can't wait for the court system to do that. I think they have achieved this goal, though by a very unorthodox method. I wouldn’t hesitate to buy their products - especially if I was sure they were using the method described in their application. I would welcome the comments of an electrical type, as to whether or not the stated approach sounds viable. Mike Koerner
  14. Mike Koerner

    Brake stuck

    I checked my logbook. The incident where one side locked up on landing was after I had changed to the Matco brakes. I also see that I changed the pads shortly thereafter. I still think the Matco brakes are far superior. They stop the plane much faster. Also, with the Marc brakes I sometimes had to pump the brake handle to get them to actuate. One time at a charity flight event the lineman signaled for me to pull right up to him then crossed his wands for me to stop. He has no idea how close he came to becoming minced meat. Mike Koerner
  15. Mike Koerner

    Garmin files suit against uAvionix

    There are 3 independent claims (1, 6 & 11) in Garmin’s Patent (US8102301B2) each of which describes a system which receives a transmission from the transponder of the aircraft to determine the transponder code and then uses that information, such as to set the ADS-B code. Uavionix’s patent application (US20180100914A1) has 4 independent claims (1, 10, 17 & 25) each of which describes a system which “reconstructs” the transponder code “based on an induced signal on the power wire”. The code is digital, a sequence of ON and OFF transmissions, the timing of which determines the value. Transmissions require power. Whenever they are ON the aircraft’s bus voltage drops a bit. Uavionix claims to use this voltage drop to determine the transponder code. They are not using the transponder transmission. Instead they are using the power required to generate that transmission. If this is really what they are doing, this does not sound to me like an infringement. Perhaps the reason Garmin chose a jury trial is to add an element of randomness to the outcome. Regardless of merit, I think the timing of this lawsuit, coming months before the 2020 mandate and with the NavWorx debacle still fresh in people’s minds, will be devastating for Uavionix and very beneficial to Garmin’s GDL 82 sales. Mike Koerner
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