January 23, 2012 at 4:02 pm #83675
I took off at 2 degrees F and noted an over boost up to 41 MP. The engine started smoking through the cowl. I landed after about a 3 min flight. The oil pressure went to 0. I shut down the engine which appeared to be running normally. The engine lost all oil. Right side of cowl and undersurface of wing covered with oil. I can’t see a leak after removing upper and lower cowl. The oil appears to be coming from behind cylinder # 5. 1 & 3 are oil covered. The engine is at about 1300 hrs with #3 & 5 having been replaced 50 hours ago. JPI showed increased fuel flow for about 20 secs up to a maximum of about 43 gph. Otherwise JPI indications normal. I don’t have oil pressure monitoring. The engine is a TSIO 520 EB RAM I.
I would like recommendations on how to proceed.
Thanks very much.January 23, 2012 at 4:28 pm #95458
Hi, was the engine pre-heated? If it was over by Cylinder #2 I would expect the oil cooler. Since the problem seems to be over at Cylinder #5, here are some possibilities. A brief overboost to 41 is not going to be an issue – the big concern is the oil loss. Inspect case and cylinder in the region of Cylinder 5. Inspect pushrods and seals. Compression check for 5 and 3. Unfortunately, there are no oil hoses or other easy to fix components in that area.
Do you have some pictures? Where is the plane now?
EricJanuary 23, 2012 at 8:48 pm #95459
Thanks for your reply. No pics. The airplane had an oil pan heater with an insulated blanket surrounding the cowl with the heat on for 24 hours prior to start. The airplane is at KRZN. We are thinking of replacing the oil and starting it to see if we can identify where the leak is coming from.January 24, 2012 at 12:33 am #95460
I would look at the push rod seals. When they go they blow a lot of oil all over the place.January 24, 2012 at 2:31 am #95464quote SGERBER:
Real Gasket makes some apparently upgraded replacements. My comments on oil cooler might be off as I was thinking GTSIO-520.
I would check the compressions and inspect closely for case cracks before adding oil and trying to start. Have you opened up the filter?January 24, 2012 at 5:53 am #95467
Thanks again for the comments.
Have not yet opened the filter. No obvious case cracks in the area of oil contamination.January 27, 2012 at 6:41 pm #95489
Any update? Did you find the leak?January 31, 2012 at 2:15 am #95529
Update on above. Top bolt in #5 valve cover was missing after being installed 30 fight hours ago. Head cover gasket just in front of that was partially extruded. Ice crystals in the air/oil separator and about 1/2 inch of blackish liquid in bottom of the separator. All compressions are good. We’re going to install a new gasket clean the separator and line and do a test run. Any other advice would be appreciated.January 31, 2012 at 3:47 am #95532quote TWILDES:
I would still replace the filter, cut and inspect. How do you clean the separator? Ice crystals make sense if it was cold, lot’s of moisture from combustion. Was it a silicone gasket, they tend to creep out and should not be overtightened. I have heard that a little permatex aviation gasket sealant on both sides of the silicone gasket help hold it in place. I think that those bolts should be tightened to about half of what they are typically tightened too – but sounds like the one that fell out was not tight at all!
Do you know if CHT’s were ever elevated when you lost oil?
EricJanuary 31, 2012 at 2:37 pm #95535
I’m not a mechanic, but… I would be very concerned about the condition of the engine considering it ran with no oil pressure. Seems to me checking the oil filter for metal and a compression check would be prudent. But that’s JMHOJanuary 31, 2012 at 9:10 pm #95538
Thanks to all for the comments. The cylinder compressions are all normal. JPI print out shows no abnormal temperatures. The filter will be cut. We too are very concerned about the condition of the engine. The question is how to resolve our concern about the condition of the engine without tearing it down. We will probably fix the leak, run it with new oil and then cut the filter to see what we can find. The assumption is that new oil will flush out and trap metal in the filter and if there is a problem we probably haven’t done any more damage since it will need an overhaul anyway.February 6, 2012 at 11:26 pm #95569
The final resolution of the above problem, at least for now, is complete. We cleaned the air/oil separator and oil scavenge line, replaced the blown valve cover gasket, ran the engine, cut the filter and found no metal. I flew it today and everything appears nominal. We’ll watch it closely.
Thanks to all who offered their experience and recommendations. 😀February 7, 2012 at 8:03 am #95572quote TWILDES:
Great news! How did you clean the separator? What was the black stuff that you found?
Would be curious if your oil stays cleaner longer with the separator cleaned out.
EricMarch 7, 2012 at 9:08 pm #95673
Cleaned t 😆 he screen with mineral spirits. The mechanic cleaned the housing and took off the oil scavenge line and blew it out. I think the dark stuff was just discolored ice and maybe some coked oil. So far 6 hours on it and no problems.
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