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I have a leak at my coolant pump. It's actually at or near the bottom bolt for the coolant return elbow. I decided rather than try to figure out how to get to it without removing the engine, I would just pull the engine so that I can do it right. I decided it would be nice to learn how to pull the engine. My engine mount rubber is only 2 1/2 years old, but it is already showing weather cracking. And it seems like the engine is sagging more than it should. So, I might even change out the rubber there while I'm at it.

Anyway, I just wanted to show off my engine sling. And while I"m at it, I'll show the shop crane and load leveler that I got for pulling the engine. The crane and load leveler are from Harbor Freight. I plan to leave the prop and gear reduction attached to the engine, so the load leveler is a must for that. I was amazed when I saw it, only $29!!! Picture 3 is essentially an end view of picture 2 (shows how I need to modify those 2 slings to attached to the Rotax 912 engine. I also ordered some Coupling nuts (same threads as the head bolts) to be able to slip the chains over (and cap screws/washers so the chains will be locked on). Oh, the four attach points that I chose are 2 forward and 2 rearward head bolts (studs actually).

I'll post a picture as soon as I attach it.  

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This is the same rig I use to hoist my plane up when working on wheels etc  😀 - indeed, very cheap and convenient - the only thing is that the whole setup is pretty “mobile” and can shift on you unless you are careful...

 

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Thanks! Reminded me that I will have to come up with something to hold my tail up when I pull my engine. I put a steel tie down in the floor near the tail, so I can use a ratchet strap to hold it against a horizontal support (I have something in mind that's in the hangar). I love the creativity of improvising. I love working on it almost as much as flying it. I love keeping it airworthy. I'd love to see a picture of that airplane, the whole thing, naked, ha ha. 

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I use an old round top bar stool with a piece of pink foam on top. Make sure to set the brakes so it can't rotate off to the side and fall off. I have taken a cargo strap and wrapped aroung the fuselage and under the top of the stool to hold it in place. I have also used a portable sawhorse with foam on top.

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 Mine is a Sting S4 plane so probably completely different approach than a CTLS for handling maintenance like that  ... like you said mostly improvising though 😀

 

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Pictures below show my engine removal in early 2018 which is basically the Roger Lee method. Leave the spinner, prop, and nose gear in place. Hoist and straps are from Harbor Freight Aviation. Only the center yellow strap is holding any weight. It is attached to the 7/16" x 2 1/8" square steel stock shown in 2nd picture (Home Depot) which fits perfectly between the cylinders on flat spots just behind the valve covers. The engine, prop, nose gear combination balances perfectly level hanging only by the center yellow strap.

The other two straps were added after engine removal and carry no weight. They were added as safety straps to make me feel better while the engine hung like that for about a week. I like

to worry about things  so this eliminated that worry.:thinking-1376: Also notice the piece of 90 degree channel zip tied to the hydraulic ram. This eliminated any chance of the hydraulics bleeding down overnight. Again, one less worry.🎯

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Thanks for all the input guys, much appreciated!!!

Thank you so much John for that picture and all the information. I was amazed to see the nose wheel removed with the engine. I had no idea you could do that! I think I will leave my nose wheel on the fuselage. I have not tried loosening the engine mount bolts yet so I'm not sure how that will play out. 

I'm very excited to hook up my modified load leveler. I have it ready and today I spent about an hour assembling the shop crane. Tomorrow I should be able to hook it up and take a picture. 

By the way John, you had me there for a while - Harbor Freight Aviation!!! Ha ha. Oh wow, love that hangar, I'm jealous, that's a man cave, ha ha! 

Regards all . . .

ET

 

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Posting 2 pictures of my engine lifting system. I tried it out yesterday and it works fine. The second picture shows my actual attach points to the engine: The top front & top rear head bolts on both sides of the engine (it's actually nuts and studs). I remove the 4 nuts and replace them with 4 coupling nuts and then slip the chains over those nuts and retain with 4 cap screws and washers. The chains can still shift on the coupling nuts so I will make up some spacers to eliminate that possibility.

You can see how the load leveler works (by cranking the handle) to shift the effective lift point front to rear.

So far I lifted the whole airplane, not the engine, so I could not see where I would need to crank the load leveler to.

The horizontal part of my slings is just 3/4 electrical conduit with a 1/2 threaded rod inside. They did not flex at all so I think they will be plenty strong enough. If necessary 3/4 pipe could be used.

I did not remove my engine yet, so I'll proceed with extreme caution when I do (may make up a way to load test my slings first).   

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You have put a lot of thought into this, but removing one of the nuts from each cylinder that holds the head and cylinder in place may have not been such a good idea.

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Yes, thought about that. I figure as long as I get the correct nuts re-installed and torqued correctly, without running the engine, I should be OK (as long as I keep my fingers crossed, ha ha). 

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To John Horn and Roger Lee: Looks like I will have to go ahead and pull my engine to fix my coolant leak (I believe my leak is at the large O-ring that serves as the gasket for the coolant supply elbow). BTW, I did find out that I can reach that lower screw retaining the coolant elbow (by reaching in from the lower/right side of the engine). 

QUESTION 1: Wouldn't it be possible to remove just the engine or the engine and the engine frame (instead of removing the engine with the frame and the engine mount and the nose wheel)? I'm thinking if it's just a matter of holding the bolts from turning, I might even slot the shank ends so I can insert a right angle screw driver.

QUESTION 2: If not, how do you keep the nuts from turning on the aft side of the firewall? Are they secured from turning?

Thx!

ET

  

 

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I'll leave question #1 to those more experienced.

As for question #2, I seem to remember holding the bolt head with a wrench in one hand while ratcheting off the nut with the other hand.

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Answer #1, Possible maybe, practical no! Definitely not how the factory teaches removing the engine.

Answer #2, Open the doors and put a wrench on the nuts. Personally I use a socket and ratchet with an extension where needed. Access is not a problem.

You will spend 10 times more time trying to save a little work. It is not worth it. 

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I have done #1. It's not worth trying to dismount the engine from the t-frame without a complete disassembly, especially when trying to safety wire.

Instead: If you can support the nose under the bulkhead, you don't have to disconnect everything. Just the items from the engine to the frame from the airplane's left side, carbs, cabin heat, and nose steering. Not sure if I am missing anything.but look before doing the next step.

Dismount the t-frame, and swing it out a little and to the right. The wires and attachments on the right side should be long enough to give you enough access so you don't have to deal with reattaching and rerouting wires.

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I was just out at my hangar and I'm almost embarrassed for asking about the nuts aft of the firewall. Daaaa, all I had to do was open my doors and open my eyes, ha ha!!!

I will definitely remove the frame and engine mount with the engine.

Thx Gentlemen!

Thanks Corey, read your input a couple times before I got it, I love shortcuts, ha ha.

ET

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John, not clear on how you use the square tubing?  Do you position this on the bottom side of the cylinders and run the strap to the bar down between the cylinders?  If so, this is a simple and easy way to obtain a lift point.

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You are correct. There are flat spots just behind the valve covers and this size tubing fits perfectly. Tubing is 2 1/8"  long by 7/16" square. Using this lift point and leaving the nose gear on, it balances.

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I am quite happy with my lifting system, but I am very curious about how you route the main strap when you use the "Roger Lee" method? In the picture that John Horn shared above, it looks like I can see that main strap going around the intake manifold and going across there horizontally to the other intake (but from the discussion that can't be the case).

I guess the square tubing must be going underneath the cylinders and bridges across the gap between cyl 1 & 3 and cyl 2 & 4? I'll go look at the bottom of the cylinders again. 

Just curiosity . . . 

I will be delayed in pulling my engine (decided I have to repair the flooring in my hangar, will not be able to move the shop crane smoothly). 

Again, thanks for all the input guys. My engine removal would have been a disaster without all the great input. Give yourselves a pat on the back, ha ha. 

ET

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ET,

Don't overthink this operation. My method is exactly the same as Tips as far as the strap routing. He uses two broomsticks, I use two of those pieces of square tubing cut to fit on a flat section on the bottom of each cylinder, bridging the gap between the cylinders, just inboard of the valve covers. The strap does not go around the intake manifold.

The engine/prop/nose wheel assembly balances perfectly using only that strap. As I stated, the only purpose of the other two straps was to give me peace of mind. They carry no weight. Next time I will use a single strap set up as Tip has done.

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John, I went out and looked at the bottom of my engine/cylinders. I can envision where the strap would go, but I did not see any obvious place where the square tube would go. It does not really matter to me, I'm going to use my load leveler with the 2 modified slings that I pictured above (all metal, no straps). As far as balance, I can move the CG anywhere between the front and rear sling so my balance will be no problem (I will adjust and mark the position of the lift eye when I first detach the engine. It balances really easily because of the low CG with the landing gear/exhaust.

I'll post a picture as soon as I detach the engine, but I will switch gears for now and repair the floor in my hangar!

Thx . . . 

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Today I can see the broom sticks in Tip's picture (did not see the picture yesterday, guess it was loading and I did not realize). As long as I'm posting, here is how I modified my coupling nuts so the chains will not be able to shift. I'll use washers also so I don't mar the aluminum head when I tighten these. 

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Thanks, yes I do. I think I might add 1 washer at the lower right and lower left (my spinner almost touches the lower cowling). Anyway, I'll take a picture at each bolt location when I am removing. I have my floor repaired in the hangar, just letting the concrete cure and letting the hangar dry out (heavy rains here for several days). Again thanks!

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