This looks great - i can imagine it costing quite a lot - i noticed you start in malta; are the machines provided? What types will be used? i'm considering distances/ speed/ fuel burn - would an R22 or cabri be too small/slow/carry enough fuel etc.
What a fantastic holiday idea - just have to convince the wife. _________________ PPL (H)
If it moves i want a go
SUBJECT: Engine Inspection in Particulate-Laden Environments (Volcanic Ash, Sand, Dust, Airborne Debris)
MODELS AFFECTED: All Lycoming aircraft engines.
TIME OF COMPLIANCE: Immediately after flight or ground operation in particulate-laden atmospheres
Incomplete review of all the information in this document can cause errors. Read the entire Service Instruction to make sure you have a complete understanding of the requirements
This service instruction gives guidelines for operation, inspection, and service of Lycoming engines which have been operated in atmospheres that have particulate matter such as dust, sand, debris, and volcanic ash.
Inlet air which contains volcanic ash or other particulates can cause damage to piston engines. Solid deposits can collect on engine baffles or other engine surfaces to prevent engine cooling. Accumulation of deposits on the induction air filter can prevent air flow to the engine and decrease engine power.
If deposits get into the engine oil, engine malfunction and/or failure can occur from abrasive wear.
DO NOT USE WATER INITIALLY TO REMOVE VOLCANIC ASH. WHEN
VOLCANIC ASH COMES INTO CONTACT WITH WATER, IT CAN BECOME A
HARDENED, CORROSIVE COMPOUND.
Given the dynamic conditions of volcanic ash, Lycoming recommends that engines not be operated in areas where volcanic ash is seen in the air or on the ground. Ash on the ground and runways can inadvertently get into the engine compartment and cause engine damage during landing or take-off.
However, if during flight, the engine is in a particulate laden atmosphere, do the following:
1. Monitor the engine temperature during flight. (Damaged or blocked cooling baffles or heavy deposits on engine cooling surfaces can decrease cooling efficiency and cause the engine to overheat.)
2. If the engine is not operating smoothly in flight, make a safe landing as soon as possible. Identify and repair the cause of rough operation.
In the event that the engine has been in particulate-laden atmospheres, especially volcanic ash clouds or with ash on the ground, Lycoming recommends that you do all of the standard actions shown in Table 1.
Thanks for that - we wondered the same but as far as we can tell the general desert environment is not 'particulate laden'.
After the first trip to Libya, with lots of time spent in the low hover over sand (oops), we had damage to the leading edges of the main blades (no tape fitted then). On inspection afterwards, even in that sandy atmosphere, the filters were clean (no dirtier than normal).
As long as you're flying correctly (as per my post above) and you avoid sandstorms (either fly away or land immediately and shut down and wait) it doesn't seem that engine contamination, or indeed blade wear, is a problem.
Fuel contamination has not been a problem (perhaps because we're not moving the fuel about (ie all refuels are at airports).
We put those 'nasty' silver windscreen covers inside, to reflect as much heat as possible back out (and in any event keep the avionics/seats in the shade at least. Keeping the cockpit vents open (assuming no blowing sand/dust also helps keep the cockpit temps down.
Yes, those silver heat shields are great albeit somewhat 'cheap and nasty'!
Interestingly, our fuel contamination problem first manifested itself by fuel drains leaking - there were no immediately obvious effects on the running of the engines, but upon draining the fuel cells the problem was discovered.
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