O320-H2AD - Good, bad, ugly?

Discussion in 'Maintenance Bay' started by Mr.T, Oct 17, 2018.

  1. Mr.T

    Mr.T Pre-Flight

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    I'm looking at a used RV6 that has about 1100 hours on an O320-H2AD. I haven't seen the plane or logbooks, so I don't know any particulars. But Google says that engine model had a lot of problems when it was introduced and that it was only produced for about 3 years. That concerns me both from a reliability standpoint and a maintenance / spare parts standpoint.

    Would appreciate any input about this engine and suggestions as to whether I'd be foolish to buy an RV6 with this engine in it.
     
  2. Ryanb

    Ryanb Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    From a reliability standpoint, it’s not really any different from other O-320 models, as long as it’s exercised on a routine basis. The issues tend to arise after it’s sat for awhile, which is why the notion has been to atleast turn the prop through a few times every couple of days if you can’t fly it.


    Get your hands on the logs and go from there.
     
  3. Kenny Phillips

    Kenny Phillips Cleared for Takeoff

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    The current thinking is to warm it up completely by flying, rather than turn it over a few times, which doesn't oil the cylinders, but actually scrapes them clean.
     
  4. Mr.T

    Mr.T Pre-Flight

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    Just got a little more information from the dealer who's handling the sale:
    * It's an estate sale, previous owner died in early 2017. I don't think the plane has flown since then. It's been listed for sale since early July, but apparently the owner's sons have insisted on pricing it far above market, in spite of the dealer's advice to the contrary.
    * The most recent Conditional Inspection lists "Uknown SMOH" - apparently, even though they have engine logs "from day 1", there's not the typical "overhaul" entry. Some kind of a logbook entry by a Canadian shop that might allude to an overhaul but nothing definitive. That scares me quite a bit.

    I'm guessing, short of a thorough review of the logs and maybe having an A&P open up the engine for a visual inspection, there's no way to really trust the engine.
     
  5. Stewartb

    Stewartb Final Approach

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  6. arnoha

    arnoha Cleared for Takeoff

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    Honestly, with those two notes, this feels like a run, don't walk, in the other direction. Remember, you're getting the best possible spin from the dealer and it still scares you. And that has nothing to do with it being an H2AD.
     
  7. TCABM

    TCABM Line Up and Wait

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    It’s EAB. How many hours on the airframe. OpLims available?
    Build log available?
    Vans have any info on it?

    For a low enough price swap the motor for a known condition mid-time motor.
     
  8. Juliet Hotel

    Juliet Hotel Line Up and Wait

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    Oye. Only sensible way forward is to assume minimum core value for the motor and make an offer based on that assuming of course everything else about the plane is what it should be. From the sound of it, a lowball offer will be rejected but that's their choice. Just make sure to mention to them that any value in the airplane has is steadily decreasing with every passing day that it sits not being flown so this is your offer now, but in 2 months it will be lower and 2 months after that you will no longer be interested in it at any price.
     
  9. Stewartb

    Stewartb Final Approach

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  10. Mr.T

    Mr.T Pre-Flight

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    I think I'll just pass on this one. My understanding is the heirs originally insisted on listing the plane at $75k back in July; it's down to $44.5k now and still above market as far as I'm concerned - they'll be hard pressed to come down much farther.

    The listing says 1100 hours on the airframe, but there's no telling what the engine has. The main reason I'm attracted to it is for a nice IFR panel and dual-axis autopilot. But I'm not interested in buying it just to replace the engine and I'm not brave enough to sit behind an engine with an unknown maintenance history.
     
  11. aftCG

    aftCG Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Chicken.
     
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  12. 1RTK1

    1RTK1 Line Up and Wait

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    From what I have been told, turning the prop is not a good idea. It tends to scrap, for the lack of a better word, the oil off the cylinder walls. It would be better to fog the cylinders and let it sit.
     
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  13. mondtster

    mondtster Pattern Altitude

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    The H2AD engine probably has one of the worst reputations of any Lycoming yet it is probably one of the easiest to determine the health of the bottom end in. If it were me, I’d give the engine and plane a chance provided it can be purchased for a fair price. Sounds like pricing may be a problem though.
     
  14. Mr.T

    Mr.T Pre-Flight

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  15. Stewartb

    Stewartb Final Approach

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    Take the engine out of the equation and what's the cost to build it?

    Is this the plane you'd build?
     
  16. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    it'll cost way more than $44K for that ....even without the engine. But there are others for sale in a similar price range....so.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018
  17. Skyrys62

    Skyrys62 Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    The rental/trainer 172 I fly has that engine according to the documentation I've seen.
    It always goes past TBO according to the A&P.
    Although it's flown regularly, I can attest that it goes through some rough treatment, as most trainers/rentals do.

    I agree that the cost of building an RV with any decent engine is going to put you out a ton of time and more than that in cost.
    Do the best inspection you can and fly the crap out of it!

    ps...if you get it, come pick me up
     
  18. Juliet Hotel

    Juliet Hotel Line Up and Wait

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    Don't remember if it was this forum but I've seen that plane posted before. Constant speed prop control in the panel and wood prop on the nose means there's a story. Seems the prop was changed. If so why? When the prop was changed, was the motor changed as well? If so why? And if so, where did this motor come from and how long has it been on that plane. Where was it before it on the plane? How long did it sit not on a plane? Those are the questions that would concern me. And given that its unlikely anyone involved in the sale will have direct first hand knowledge of the answers to those questions, I'd be wary.
     
  19. Mr.T

    Mr.T Pre-Flight

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    If you look closely at the photos of the panel, the blue handle is labeled "mixture" and the red handle is "carb heat." Just a little bit non-standard...
     
  20. jesse

    jesse Administrator Management Council Member

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    The h2ad fears are mostly just that, fear. Flown regularly in a rental fleet, at full rental power their whole life, they’ll go well beyond TBO without issue. Time and time again.
     
  21. mondtster

    mondtster Pattern Altitude

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    That has been my experience too. I believe there were some problems early on that earned the engine a reputation but Lycoming seems to have corrected them and created a fairly durable engine in the process.
     
  22. charlie

    charlie Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I once got an H2AD that had 3976 hours and never had a cylinder off. Turned out it was from a fish spotter and it flew 8 hours or more every day!. OTOH since RV's are so plentiful why buy one with that engine. I for one do not like the siamese mag.
     
  23. weirdjim

    weirdjim En-Route

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    It may be a minor point, but I'd hesitate to deal with a company that says that an RV needs an "annual".

    Jim
     
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  24. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    well....there is that too. ;)