Borescope/endoscope suggestions?

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Aviacs

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Oct 21, 2019
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There are quite a few options out there thes days.
Any suggestions for typical aircraft engine use?
I'd like one that articulates enough to get in a crankcase, too.
 

TFF

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Apr 28, 2010
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17,353
Location
Memphis, TN
Unluckily if you want to look in a Lycoming crankcase, it’s just about impossible. I have never tried a Continental or other. They work great for turbines. A front crankcase vent might get something. Rear vent will just get gears. On some oil sumps , you could drain the oil and go up through the where the oil enters the sump at the case halves. Get one with a side view option. Depending on resolution, the cheap ones that Wi-Fi to your phone are not bad. I got a cheap harbor freight one that gets me by.
 

Aviacs

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Oct 21, 2019
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390
Hoping to look into my Great Plains 2276 VW conversion before changing the oil and lighting it up after 2-1/2 years dormant between OP & me. One of those things, "Never expected it to be down more than a few months". At least is has mostly been in heated storage. Except for that interim period in neighbor's barn when it flooded up to the axle. :(

Thanks for mentioning HF - it did not occur to me that they would sell them. There appear to be several options.

I'll study the flexible cable Ablescopes, too.

Thanks!
smt
 

Aviacs

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Oct 21, 2019
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390
Anyone compared dual lens (rotate head, select lens for view) vs articulating head single lens versions?
Seems like dual lens could inspect tighter quarters?
 

bifft

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Apr 17, 2011
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Utah
Anyone compared dual lens (rotate head, select lens for view) vs articulating head single lens versions?
Seems like dual lens could inspect tighter quarters?

I got this one to get my magneto clamp out of the sump. I was able to see the valve heads in the cylinders with it, but a articulating head would have been easier to use for that. It was tricky getting the lens pointed the right way with just the spark plug hole to work through. The dual lens could see to the side of a smaller bore,
 

Aviacs

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Oct 21, 2019
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390
Teslong gets a lot of mentions, but i have had less success with anyone that can compare the models.

This one looks good - articulating, only 6.2mm, waterproof, and over 2 m pixels.


then there's this one, still Teslong,, dual lens, non-articulating, 5mm.
What does it give up to the one bifft linked (for aprox 45% less price)?


Or this triple lens for $109

Vs this triple lens with a 1/2" wider (diagonal) screen, for $259?

I mean for $150 difference, the specs only show that 1/2" diagonal improvement?

Reading various comments on Amazon, it appears games are played, charger not included?

Dunno if it's me, but the ability to compare capabilities among options even in the same brand almost seems obfuscatory.
There are the gross comparison pages, but they don't really make it easy to tell where the value lays when comparing items of apparently similar spec, and sometimes more than 2x the price or vice versa.

smt
 

Aviacs

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Oct 21, 2019
Messages
390
I got tired of dithering and bought the articulating Ralcam 6.2 mm single camera. (F406A) that hooks to a user provided device.

It came yesterday and i "inspected" through the plug holes inside a couple GO-300 cylinders in my office.
Mechanically, it appears it will be almost trivial for that,
but it does take some practice and interpretation of the visual effects of brightness and color distortion.
IOW, it's easy for things (scratches, e.g.) to look worse on the 'scope than they are by just turning the jug over and looking in it.
Or like "is that carbon? or is it rust?

Can't get to the airport until next week but my wife thinks it paid for itself.

We had an ongoing plumbing issue that could be solved with a plunger, but then came right back & was sometimes easy, sometimes near impossible. I ran a snake in it several times over the past months, and actually removed, inspected, and reset the toilet a couple weeks ago. Where-upon the issue came right back. We have guests coming. So today i pulled the toilet again, and tried to ream it out again from the bottom but it seemed clean. My wife said why don't you use the borecope? It revealed a mechanical pencil, loose but trapped just past the weir that could be easily pushed out of the way with mechanical probes, but could not pass down, & was too far over to drop back in the bowel. Rattling around, ready to fall back across the exit and create a blockage as soon as the last one was cleared. Viewing the screen while my wife manipulated the borescope, i was able to get the pencil with grabbers, and position it to break with a piece of strap iron to remove it.

Gripe: Originally when going to load the app on my Samsung/Android it would not do so without me ceding the right to mess with my photos on all connected devices. Not going to happen. Had i know that, it would have been a game stopper. **** microsoft already messes with my Nikon photo albums too much. However, i have a dumb ipad (not enough brains to qualify for a plan) and it was easy to download that app on wifi, and set up with that. The big screen is nice, too.

If anyone is interested, i'll report after it gets more aviation use.

:)

smt
 
Joined
May 30, 2011
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Location
Valley Center, KS, USA
I have access to a very nice Olympus Bscope and have used them for years. On the home front I have been through several Bscopes including the Harbor Freight and some from Amazon. All of them have provided some good insight from time to time. Currently I have two that I find to be adequate for doing airplane and engine inspections. Both have been previously mentioned, the Teslong and the Ralcam. I have found both to be acceptable for most things we need to do on piston engine airplanes. The Teslong has a long reach and two cameras one looking forward and one to the side. I have used this to do things like inspect the inside of struts, find broken ribs in wood wings and find missing hardware in places it shouldn't be. The Ralcan is the "sit" for inspecting engine valves and combustion chambers. Unless there is a need to inspect turbo machinery, your toolbox needs one of each.
 
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