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Old 03-07-2021, 05:56 PM
kearney kearney is offline
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Canmore, Alberta, Canada
Posts: 49
Default PIREP From A Happy SDSEFI Customer

Originally Posted by Jt rotor guy View Post
I am stepping into an unknown area here. I have an injected 540 but looking to step that up and get better performance and control. I am not an engine guy so looking for input to make my 540 fly the best. Thanks to all that can give feedback

I thought I'd answer the original question for this thread. I selected the SDSEFI system for my RV-10 IO-540 (CAI + 9:1 compression).

To my mind there are three key elements that must be considered : Support / reliability / function. All are important but I'll deal with support first.


I became aware of SDS when I became part of the Eggenfellner / Subaru engine debacle. When Eggenfellner's support for this engine package disappeared, it was Ross at SDS who stepped up and helped me get the engine working. I throught I bought a plug and play engine but was sadly mistaken.

Ross supplied ECU's to Eggenfellner who specified how they were programmed and locked (to prevent user adjustment). Ross had no responsibility to the final purchaser - this was Eggenfellner's responsibility.

Even so, Ross unlocked my ECU and guided me through adjusting the ECU values and installing sensors so I could get the engine working safely. For all his help he never charged me a dime. His commitment to his customers and the community at large won my greatest respect. I credit him in keeping me safe during my first 50 hours with the Subie engine. Postscript - the engine did die an early death due to cooling issues (unrelated to the ignition / injection system).

It is one thing to support your own product, entirely another to support some else's.


Through my involvement with the Subie I became quite aware of the SDS ECUs operated and how robust they were. When I learned that there were nearly 2,000 ECUs in service, there was no doubt that I would install an SDS system in my next RV10. Over the past two years I have logged 190+ hours on my SDS equipped -10. The system has been flawless. It has met and surpassed all my expectations. My third -10 will have the same system.


The SDS system does everything I need it to do. In terms of functionality, what I need the ECU to do is run my engine smoothly and efficiently. The SDS system does both. I run LOP whenever appropriate and see about a 9% fuel savings with only a small airspeed loss. I could save more but I like to fast and high. My engine runs very clean.

Okay - there is one other factor - Bling. I like aircraft bling. I installed Ross's new square programming head because it looks pretty on my panel. The old round instrument - not so much.

I have also installed all the CNC anodized engine parts that Ross sells (valve covers etc, etc, etc). They make an engine look quite spiff.

Full Disclosure

For the reasons above I am a big supporter of Ross and SDS. Some of you may have seen his RV-10 videos taken in my -10. My engine pix are also on his site. This I have done as a way of saying thank you. I won't even let him buy gas or discount my purchases. I owe a great debt as he kept me safe with the Subie engine.

RV10 C-GCWZ Sold and now vacationing in Tulsa
RV10 C-GROK Flying
RV10 # 3 - under construction

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