Engine On Order

With the dual goals of building and maintaining my plane and getting my A&P certificate eventually, I thought the in-person engine build program offered by Aero Sport Power would be an amazing learning experience. I’m not sure anyone offers a similar program starting from a rack of parts and ending with an aircraft engine (though there’s probably someone). I’m very much looking forward to attending their build class and learning all about the engine as we assemble it. This time will also help with the “Powerplant” part of the Airframe & Powerplant mechanics certificate.

I’ve ordered an AEIO-375-M1S engine with the following specs. It should net out somewhere in the 205-220 horsepower range. I’ll never know for sure because Aero Sport Power doesn’t have a dyno to test with, and that’s fine. It’ll say 205 on the placard and that’s what it will be for legal purposes (I’m doing my high performance rating in a Boeing Stearman!).

The 375 takes the core from a 360 and adds a lot of Superior parts to it. A couple extra oil flow holes are drilled as well, converting it from an IO to an AEIO.

The cylinders will be Superior Millennium Cylinders, and due to price increases Aero Sport offered to port and polish them for me at no cost which was nice. Inside them will be 9.7:1 compression pistons – and this is where the official 205hp rating comes from. I remember a video from Base Leg Aviation recommending oil cooling nozzles in higher compression engines, and so each piston will have a cooling nozzle to spray oil onto it.

Ignition will be dual Light Speed Plasma III units, using crank trigger ignition. This is one part of why my plane is so electrically dependent. Light Speed claims higher power and better fuel efficiency, and we’ll find out. These seem to have a checkered past over on Van’s AirForce, but every CubCrafters FX-3 has duel Light Speed ignition and I couldn’t find any reports of problems from them. I think, but don’t know for sure, that installation plays a large part in how well these systems work. I’ll be modeling my install after the CubCrafters install.

Feeding the electrical system will be a B&C 60 Amp externally regulated alternator. B&C alternators get great reviews, and the external regulation allows for less “stuff” hanging off the engine making working around it easier.

For starting, I’m using the Sky-Tec 149-12HT. I thought about asking to use the B&C version, but I didn’t think it was worth it. Sky-Tec starters are extremely common, and with electric ignition I would hope that starting is a non-issue. If it does fail or eventually need replacement, I’ll replace it with the lightweight B&C starter.

Fuel will be handled by the Airflow Performance fuel injection system. This system seems to be very common in RVs and no one seemed to have anything bad to say about it. While Aero Sport Power has the ability to tune lots of things, fuel injector nozzle tuning is probably soemthing I’ll have to do once we’re flying.

The oil system consists of a Raven Inverted oil system working with a Superior Cold Air Induction Sump. This sump weighs about 3 pounds less than the Lycoming default, shaving off some weight and perhaps adding a few horsepower due to the cooler induction air. I’m going to heat sheild the exhaust pipes so that they do not radiate heat into this sump, as it’s at the very bottom of the engine very close to the exhaust. The Raven system will keep oil flowing even under varrying g-loads and attitudes.

Estimated build is summer 2025, and I hope that lines up with my overall build more or less. Aero Sport Power has a nice warranty – 1 year to install the engine, and then 3 years of flying.

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