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  #1  
Old 11-19-2012, 08:10 PM
schristo@mac.com's Avatar
schristo@mac.com schristo@mac.com is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: WA
Posts: 995
Default adding an oil separator...

After nearly 500 hours on the tach I have decided to give an oil separator a try... I have been using one quart of oil every 8 hours; not unreasonable but I seem to get most of it as a fine film on the belly.

Recently Anti Splat Aero added a vacuum check valve to their stable of products to go hand in hand with their oil separator setup. Dan H documented a similar valve installation and is in the process of testing for any real world measurable improvements in performance. I am interested in the potential of what I have read and plan to give the check valve a try this spring for SARL events next year.

For now, I have installed the basic oil separator system to address oil consumption and a dirty belly.

I started by test fitting the separator... looks nice in white but it does mar easily.


Once satisfied with the location, I removed the standard aluminum tube routing from the breather flex connection to the termination at the exhaust and reused the end fixed to the firewall.


After finalizing the location on the firewall I drilled the mount and used a little creative wrenching as a second set of hands


With the breather supply and waste dump lines set I routed the provided oil return fitting and braided line to the suggested accessory case plug. The fitting and length of line worked out great.


It took a some extra time to retie and secure everything; no big deal and a nice diversion on a crappy weather day... sadly we are in a prolonged stretch of crappy weather.

Here are a couple of shots of the completed installation.




Afterwords I cleaned and WAXED the belly... did I mention that the weather has been really crappy...

I will report back with results after I get some flight time on the system.
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Last edited by schristo@mac.com : 12-18-2012 at 07:44 PM.
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  #2  
Old 11-19-2012, 08:46 PM
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Patiently awaiting the results report....

How's it working...any info yet....how many hours ya got on it?....
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  #3  
Old 11-19-2012, 11:02 PM
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erich weaver erich weaver is offline
 
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Check out recent posts on the "Camguard PowerPoint presentation" thread where the developer of Camguard recommends that separators that return oil into the system NOT be used. He makes a good case...

erich
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  #4  
Old 11-20-2012, 01:12 AM
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Can you give us the one or two line summary on why it's bad to return oil to the engine from a separator? Thanks!
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  #5  
Old 11-20-2012, 07:25 AM
Wayne Gillispie Wayne Gillispie is offline
 
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Location: USA
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The amount of oil out the engine breather is a useful indication of engine problems. They may freeze up blowing out the crankcase nose seal resulting in loss of engine oil. A byproduct of combustion is water. Water, acids and other combustion residuals get pumped back into the engine. For now, I will just get on my creeper, wash and wax the belly every 25 hours. I have been adding a qt to my 540 every 10 hrs and have now decided to keep oil level at 8-9 qts unless on a long xc over hostile terrain or water.
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  #6  
Old 11-20-2012, 08:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Juvat View Post
Can you give us the one or two line summary on why it's bad to return oil to the engine from a separator? Thanks!
The returned oil no doubt includes some suspended water, acids and other contaminants. The issues worth considering are (1) the quantity of contaminants returned, (2) their actual ability to do damage, and (3) does the system concentrate contaminants in the sump oil? Do remember the contaminants in question are present all the time, even with a stock open breather, and start building in fresh oil the first time you crank up after an oil change.

(1) is largely unknown. (2) is pretty clear; they cause corrosion. (3) would be a nice subject for someone currently on an oil analysis program. Install a separator and see how the next analysis is different.

Wayne, at this time there is no reason to believe you can't connect a breather to an exhaust pipe via a reed valve, without a separator. It's done all the time in other applications. The result would likely be a clean belly. I'd guess most folks would assume oil consumption would rise. I don't think so.
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Last edited by DanH : 11-20-2012 at 06:11 PM.
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  #7  
Old 11-20-2012, 12:38 PM
jbDC9 jbDC9 is offline
 
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So I'm curious as how how the new separator works out for you, been thinking about one of these for my -8... but what I'm really curious about is what I see in the 2nd pic, the Dynon looking doohickey. What is that? Kinda looks like a fancy new com radio but I don't see anything like it on Dynon's website. Can you share with the rest of the class?
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  #8  
Old 11-20-2012, 12:44 PM
Tom Martin Tom Martin is offline
 
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I built a separator for my airplane out of a couple of soup cans. It did an excellent job of "collecting" the oil that is discarded from the breather. I wanted to collect the oil to see if there was any truth to the contaminates that are always discussed in the " to return to or not to return to" discussion that goes with oil separators. After about 50 hours of oil collection I can report that in my installation the sample of oil was pure gold. There was no moisture, or any other visible contaminates in the oil.
My separator was a bit crude but it proved the point to me and I installed the "Slime Fighter" unit on the engine, available from ACS. The neat thing about this unit is that it installs on top of the breather and the separated oil merely runs back into the engine by gravity. This eliminates any requirement for oil return lines. After 100 hours I can report that the unit works quite well, is not perfect but much much better then without. It has reduced my oil consumption by 50% or two quarts per 25 hours to one quart per 25 hours.
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  #9  
Old 11-20-2012, 01:34 PM
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erich weaver erich weaver is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Martin View Post
After about 50 hours of oil collection I can report that in my installation the sample of oil was pure gold. There was no moisture, or any other visible contaminates in the oil.
Maybe, but Im not sure that a visual inspection of the oil in your separator tells you much if thats what you did. The water and acids that are of concern are not likely to be visible. And as indicated in a previous post, use of a separator that returns oil to the sump prevents you from being able to monitor the amount of oil that is being discharged, which is a crude indicator of engine health.

erich

Last edited by erich weaver : 11-20-2012 at 01:40 PM.
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  #10  
Old 11-20-2012, 01:48 PM
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plehrke plehrke is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Martin View Post
I built a separator for my airplane out of a couple of soup cans. It did an excellent job of "collecting" the oil that is discarded from the breather. I wanted to collect the oil to see if there was any truth to the contaminates that are always discussed in the " to return to or not to return to" discussion that goes with oil separators. After about 50 hours of oil collection I can report that in my installation the sample of oil was pure gold. There was no moisture, or any other visible contaminates in the oil.
It would be interesting to send a sample of what was in the seperator and a sample from the crankcase in for oil analysis. See the difference in level of contaminates. Maybe after 2 or three times, you shed some facts on the debate of returning oil to the crankcase.
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