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  #1  
Old 04-21-2015, 03:28 PM
TheLoneGunman's Avatar
TheLoneGunman TheLoneGunman is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Cornwall, ON
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Default Where is all the Rotary love?

I used to drive a Mazda RX-8 and fell in love with that powerplant, and when I look back at old posts in forums it seems I'm not alone, or at least I wasn't until about 2008...

Does anyone still do Mazda rotary aircraft conversions, or better yet a complete FWF kit? All the websites I've found look like they have been defunct for years, or have removed any mention of doing aircraft engines. Even RotaryAviation.com, the home of Tracy Crook's famous PSRU, doesn't appear to sell it anymore. What happened?

To be clear, there seems to be a fair bit of info out there on how I myself could do a conversion, but I think that is well beyond the scope of my abilities and would still be a recipe for a decade spent tinkering in a garage. I love the idea of a rotary, but I'd rather fly behind a Lycoming than not fly at all.

Even in terms of non-Mazda rotary engines, Mistral seems to be the only game in town, and I can't find any info on how much something like their G-200 would cost, if it's even available.
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  #2  
Old 04-21-2015, 03:46 PM
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rv7boy rv7boy is offline
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We have an RV-7A in our RV Builders Group here in North Alabama that has a Mazda rotary engine. I'm not sure which Mazda engine it is. He has run the engine, but he has not finished the airframe yet. Stay tuned. I can't remember his last name. My impression is that he has put a lot of time into his project so far. Will tell you more when I know more.
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  #3  
Old 04-21-2015, 05:08 PM
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Tbone Tbone is offline
 
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Years ago I purchased a totaled RX8 to get the engine for my project. (I'm in the business). At that time there were several in the rotary camp. After lengthy conversations with Tracy and a few of the converts, I decided to sell the 13B and part the car out. Tracy gave me some great advice in that if you enjoyed to "tinker" constantly on the conversion then do it, but if you were looking for a "turn key" conversion then it wasn't the right time. Seeing that I was building my flying carpet and didn't want to reinvent the wheel, or at least my concern to build and try something unconventional, I opted out. Now this was at the time when all the automotive conversion companies were big. Not real sure if they are even around. I even looked into the Jabiru 3300 at the time seeing they had a conversion kit for the 7. I don't have a problem on experimenting on certain things in aviation but I'm not ready for the auto conversion team just yet.
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  #4  
Old 04-21-2015, 05:22 PM
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Mike S Mike S is offline
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Default Welcome to VAF!

Quinton, welcome aboard the good ship VAF
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  #5  
Old 04-21-2015, 05:54 PM
stevemcgirr stevemcgirr is offline
 
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There is an aviation conversion rotary engine site maintained by a gentleman by the name of Paul Lamar at http://www.rotaryeng.net

I believe there is a PSRU that is available in lieu of the Tracy Cook version designed by Randy Kempf according to that site. I have no personal experience, but I pass this info along
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  #6  
Old 04-21-2015, 07:15 PM
rv7charlie rv7charlie is offline
 
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There's also another email list at
http://www.flyrotary.com/

If you have trouble subscribing, PM me & I'll try to get a message to the administrator.

Not as active as Lamar's list, but more who are actually flying.

Heads up on Lamar's 'new' redrive he's pitching: He freely says it's a copy of the old Ross drive, which had issues forcing Tracy to design his own to get a reliable drive. If you have a lot of experience with the cars, you should be able to sort a lot of the wheat from the chaff.

There are rumors that a couple of other individuals are looking at reproducing Tracy's design, but no one's gone public with an offer yet.

The Flyrotary group tries to get together at least once a year. The last couple of years, here at Slobovia. We're planning on doing another flyin here, probably in early fall.

Feel free to contact me directly if you want more detailed info.

Charlie
Slobovia Outernational (MS71)
edit: Slobovia is just north of Jackson MS, USA
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  #7  
Old 04-21-2015, 07:19 PM
rv7charlie rv7charlie is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by odens_14 View Post
Here is a guy using a rotec in an RV-8 I follow on facebook...he's in the finishing stages now. It looks like a ton of work but man is it sexy!
https://www.facebook.com/radialconversions
Uh, one of the biggest rotary engine sites is 'nopistons.com' (as in: there are no pistons). Don't think a Rotec fits that description. :-)

Charlie
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  #8  
Old 04-21-2015, 07:33 PM
odens_14 odens_14 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rv7charlie View Post
Uh, one of the biggest rotary engine sites is 'nopistons.com' (as in: there are no pistons). Don't think a Rotec fits that description. :-)

Charlie
haha you're right my brain mixed up rotary/radial :P
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  #9  
Old 04-21-2015, 11:26 PM
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DaleB DaleB is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by odens_14 View Post
haha you're right my brain mixed up rotary/radial :P
Best of both worlds... find an old Gnome or Le Rhone. Or two.
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  #10  
Old 04-22-2015, 04:49 AM
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N941WR N941WR is offline
 
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My business partner has a rotary powered -6A and was the second rotary to fly, missing the honor of first to Tracy Crook by a few weeks.

We recently had this same discussion and his theory is twofold, once Mazda announced they were going to stop producing the engine, people stopped looking at them for conversion. Second, Tracy retired and handed over his business to the Cozy Girrrls. My partner mentioned that the Cozy Girrls are not making Tracy?s PRU, so that is a bit of a challenge.

This site may not be your best bet for alternative engines as some of the members have been rather hostile towards them so many who have gone down that path look elsewhere. (Part of that may have to do with the bad reputation a certain Subaru conversion developed.)

As mentioned above, my friend tells everyone who asks about the rotary, ?If you want to fly, put a Lycoming in your plane. If you want to tinker, put in an auto conversion.?
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