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Have been noticing the RH drip tray showing slight signs of fuel residue on it, the first year of my ownership had zero, and this weekends oil change had signs of it being worse - so took the scale out tonight and weighed the floats.  One hit 4.0 grams but the other was closer to newer spec, combined still over 7 grams.  The other side are checking 6.8 - 6.9 grams, but individually are showing 3.5g

I have weighed these in the past inspection but didn't note the values.  I'll log the fresh sets initial weight in the books for baseline going forward.

So, Leading Edge just booked another $300 sale, and I'll await the UPS truck to get me back in the air.  I think I'll take the lightest two items and toss in the plane tool kit for a back up.

How many years does one expect to get from floats?

 

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Seems to be a crapshoot really ... I got 300 hours on one set of floats and then had to change them due to unrelated issue ( physically chipped edge ). Our local flight school with Remos planes is on its second engine for 2 of their planes ( 3000 hours altogether on both engines  ) and as far as I was told they had to change them twice I think ...but then again, on another forum I have seen SportCruiser owners complaining about having to change their floats 3 times in the span of few years ...

I guess you change them and then keep praying   ... 🙂

 

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The floats are such garbage, but yet priced like gold.  For a while another company was making replacement floats out of a composite or epoxy.  You may want to look into them.  Rotax floats are shipped in a plain brown bag (last ones I bought from a certified Rotax dealer) as if they were pulled from a 5 gallon bucket from Mexico or China at 50 cents a piece.  It just annoys me when a manufacture marks up a faulty cheap item 20,000%.  
 

Rant over...

 

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Those Marvel floats say $159 each at Spruce...is that really each, or for a pair?  $318 is too high, but $636 for floats is outrageous, even for "permanent" ones.

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22 minutes ago, BravoFoxtrot said:

Here is a discussion from several years ago on these floats:

New Floats from MS - Page 3 - Engine/Rotax - CT Flier Forum

That's helpful, I'll stick with Rotax floats, but would be curious if anyone has fresh intel on what the MS floats are arriving weight wise these days.  Would suck to buy two sets of these and find them arrive at 7.4g fresh from package...

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A while back I bought these floats and built a test setup to evaluate them. The floats were heavy and sank deeper than the Rotax floats and was able to measure the difference. I had talked to the senior engineer at MS about it, and he was not happy about it. I told him I thought they had a good product if they could lighten them up slightly but they were not interested. I tried to explain to him that this was my job to test and evaluate things like this when I worked in the aerospace  industry. The floats were apparently taken off the market as they quit advertising them. I know they had complaints at the time because of heavy weights.

If these floats were changed for weight they will be great. The question is are they approved by Rotax, I doubt it.

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Looking at the original image of the floats and the image of the current ones, it appears they removed material from the top of the float. I don't see a weight listed so don't know what it actually is, but assume they now meet Rotax specifications. Note that these are listed as only to be installed in Experimental aircraft.

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Just found this from Van's Air Force website posted November 16, 2020 by Charlie:

"I just received a set of carb floats from Marvel-Schebler. The invoice lists them as "Rev B" of part no. MS80-430. The top has corners chamfered a bit compared to the original version shown in the photo on the M-S website, presumably to reduce the weight. Cost is roughly the same as Rotax floats.

I weighed them today and the result is encouraging. One set weighs 2.92+2.93=5.85 grams. Second set weighs 2.78+2.75=5.53 grams. This is very close to what my most recent set of Rotax floats weighed when new. M-S says the epoxy will not absorb fuel and get heavier. Fingers crossed."

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Just remember that certified aircraft are not approved for ethanol fuel, and the floats may not stand up to it if you use some.

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7 minutes ago, Tom Baker said:

Just remember that certified aircraft are not approved for ethanol fuel, and the floats may not stand up to it if you use some.

That point is not lost on me, I was about to share the following on this note.  The first six months or so of owning this SW I ran zero ethanol, there is 91 oct pure gas available at an airport 20 miles out where I was buying most of it.  Local stations sell it also, being near heavy boating market.  I also recalled why I didn't log the float weights at past checks - it was simply visually confirming the post was at level of fuel surface and was more focused on examining the corrosion issue on bowl bottoms.

That lead to me buying the new bowls, and I switched to running plain 93 with ethanol both around the same time last summer.  The good news is my bowls remain spotless, but coincidence or not, the floats are now heavy.

There is so little price difference is buying pure 91, especially if the rubber / floats / who knows what else is degrading with the ethanol.  I think I'm now going to revert back to pure gas, when it's easily available to one's area - I think it's the better choice.  Will run some ethanol for sure, not saying anti plain fuel, but when it' only 20 cents cheaper and I can pull the plane up to the airport pump, why not. 

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38 minutes ago, Madhatter said:

I could not imagine MS putting out floats not tested for ethanol. Talk about liability.

That does beg the question, if someone is manufacturing an item for an application specific use, ie Rotax 912 which is approved to run ethanol fuels, they should have taken that into consideration.  It's not like these are generic and unknown where they are ending up out in the field, they are marketed for the 912, so yeah - that's a valid point.

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Some companies go to extremes.  When I was running turbines for Lycoming you could run it on car gas for 5 to 10 hrs in a war situation . Of course the engine then had to be scrapped. 

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9 hours ago, GrassStripFlyBoy said:

Thanks fella's, seen enough here to call and cancel the Rotax items, and going to Spruce for these MS items.  Will advise the weights on Friday when they arrive.

I think you’ll do well.  In my opinion, the experimental 912 market does run ethanol too, so I can’t imagine that would be an issue.  I do run non-ethanol gas in my plane because it runs better and smoother.  Even better than on av gas.  Maybe it’s just in my head🤪.  
 

 

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I'm not 100% sure, but I think Marvel may be making the latest edition of floats for Rotax. They have an "R" stamped on them.

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19 hours ago, CTSW Bob said:

I think you’ll do well.  In my opinion, the experimental 912 market does run ethanol too, so I can’t imagine that would be an issue.  I do run non-ethanol gas in my plane because it runs better and smoother.  Even better than on av gas.  Maybe it’s just in my head🤪.  
 

 

IIRC alcohol has a higher temperature burn than gasoline, but also requires more to be burned to get the same fuel energy as it's less dense.  Because this you probably get better fuel economy in miles per gallon than if you burned E10.  If the feds really cared about fuel economy and not just corn subsidies they would go back to 100% gasoline there would be an immediate 3-5% bump in fuel economy for all cars burning pump gas. 

Also alcohol evaporates forming higher vapor pressure than gasoline and is more prone to vapor lock and similar issues.  I know a guy that had an issue with gas bubbles forming in his fuel lines using E10 in his EAB airplane that caused a lot of headaches, disappeared instantly when he went to 100LL.

Your non-ethanol gas is probably lower octane than 100LL.  The best performance for an engine is the *minimum* octane that can be run without detonation, so you probably do get better power at least than 100LL, not sure about smoothness.

I don't know if it's in your head, but there are certainly differences! 

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Ethanol was introduced as an alternative to MTBE which was used to meet clean air standards.  Get rid of the clean air standards and ethanol will go away.  Yes, I am a corn farmer.  Should we start a separate thread to discuss government subsidies and corn production?

 

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