Non- Biased Engine Reviews -Viking

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BoeveP51

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BoeveP51,
I'm glad it worked out. Two engines and three PSRUs in about 3 years, it is always good to hear from one of Jan's customers/R&D team.
Just have to point out the engine problem was mine, the PSRU changes were for product improvements that Jan made and were at no cost to me. There were no problems encountered with the PSRU, only improvements to the product. As I stated before, he has really provided me with outstanding support. As an example, when I had "first start" on both engines Jan came over to assist in the setup.
 

Air Trikes

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BoeveP51,
I'm glad it worked out. Two engines and three PSRUs in about 3 years, it is always good to hear from one of Jan's customers/R&D team.
Honda L15 is the right engine choice, as well as Subaru and Suzuki G series. Tested and proven. My customers have years and hundreds of hours trouble free on their converted Suzuki. One of the best "testers" of my engines was my Russian friend Max Semenov, FAI World Champion for 2-place weight-shift aircraft from 2016 to this time. He was flying with his wife Alfia. When he got his engine monitor screen failed, he didn't change it. He flew like this for 2 last years knowing only RPM about his engine. Competitions, training, excursion flights... The right choice of the engine + the right conversion process = you can fly thinking about flying, not about the engine.

Unfortunately my post is not only about the engines. Max Semenov passed away about a week ago in a car accident. He was only 42. Great loss, sad story for his family and friends... Job Chithalan
 

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rv7charlie

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Speaking of China, I wonder how many China-bashers are doing it via an iphone, ipad, Lenovo (IBM) computer, etc...

I quit 'buying American' when purchasing vehicles back in the 1980s, because you couldn't buy one that just worked. Quality from other countries, primarily from Japan back then, was the only reason American car mfg got any better. This was in an era when no one wanted to buy 'cheap Japanese junk'.

Past is prologue....
 

pfarber

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But I wouldn't want to use them on the hot, potentially wet side of the firewall.
I don't know of an aftermarket ECU that recommends inside the engine compartment. Most OEM units have potting and a large heat sink for cooling. even way back in the 80's the EI was potted for thermal protection.

An OEM has all the money to needed to make a proper thermal enclosure. The reset of us can save those millions in R&D and just put the ECU in the cabin and not worry (to much) about heat.
 

wsimpso1

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I have gone thru 2 engines, 3 PSRU units (improvements to the design) and mods to both the engine and PSRU. All of this was accomplished with ZERO issues. Viking has been very open and supportive when I had a question or problem.
2 Engines and 3 PSRU?!?! Gulp!

How did they happen and how can that be acceptable?

To my view of airplane reliability, that just about flunks the entire product line...

Billski
 

Pops

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2 Engines and 3 PSRU?!?! Gulp!

How did they happen and how can that be acceptable?

To my view of airplane reliability, that just about flunks the entire product line...

Billski
Hard to explain without going into today's culture and politics .
 

PagoBay

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2 Engines and 3 PSRU?!?! Gulp!
How did they happen and how can that be acceptable?
To my view of airplane reliability, that just about flunks the entire product line...
Billski
Really? Seems, by logical thinking, that reliability is not just an aviation/airplane thing.

So by your measure how many other entire product lines would also be struck from history? Conclusion by exaggeration. Ignores the larger picture of scores of successful Viking installations over more than a decade. A friend who attended last year's Zenith Fly In at the Missouri factory noted that Viking was the most popular engine choice with more than half of those attending.

But why should rationality rule over sentiment?
Maybe take a minute to scan some Newsletters Here: Newsletters — Viking & Valkyrie Power
Also the independent Zenith Engine Forum here: Discussion Forum
2nd Annual Viking Engine Workshop

 

BoeveP51

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2 Engines and 3 PSRU?!?! Gulp!

How did they happen and how can that be acceptable?

To my view of airplane reliability, that just about flunks the entire product line...

Billski
Perhaps I was not clear in my previous comments. The engine change was due to a fault of mine, I did not upgrade to the larger inter-cooler although it was available. I was waiting for delivery of the new unit and decided to continue flight testing. I then upgraded to the larger engine and inter-cooler.

There were no failures in the PSRU units. It was easier to replace with an upgraded unit versus pulling apart and adding new upgraded parts.

So as far as failures are concerned - one: me!!

Merle
 

rv6ejguy

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The first Vikings didn't deliver the advertised power (just like Jan's Subarus), had lots of fuel injection and PSRU problems and the initial turbo version lasted but a few hours. Jan learns slowly by trial and error rather than by using the proven experience of others, real engineering and good design practices. Many early customers on both the Subaru and Viking projects paid the price for this as they were essentially used as beta testers. Trial and error does work eventually however and I believe that's where Viking is finally at now. It does look like they may have some decent products now based on the mostly positive feedback over the last 3 years or so but it was a rocky road created mainly by Jan's hubris. Jan is tenacious however. I'll give him that much.
 

wsimpso1

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Perhaps I was not clear in my previous comments. The engine change was due to a fault of mine, I did not upgrade to the larger inter-cooler although it was available. I was waiting for delivery of the new unit and decided to continue flight testing. I then upgraded to the larger engine and inter-cooler.

There were no failures in the PSRU units. It was easier to replace with an upgraded unit versus pulling apart and adding new upgraded parts.

So as far as failures are concerned - one: me!!

Merle
And you think this is OK? This is at minimum five levels of BAD (two or more serious defects as shipped, three separate corrective actions to fix the design) in what he shipped to you. That all says that he did not do adequate testing prior to shipping first product, he corrected based upon customer issues, and then he did not adequately test his corrective actions either. My experience as an engineer makes me suspect that if there were that many fixes needed, there are more design defects turning up in use.

Be afraid of his product...

Billski
 

Heliano

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Extensive testing of engine/PSRU prior to releasing it is a must. Furthermore, I think that a chip detector and a vibration sensor (accelerometer) would be important safety additions to a PSRU. They would probably alert you in advance before a massive failure occurs.
 

BoeveP51

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And you think this is OK? This is at minimum five levels of BAD (two or more serious defects as shipped, three separate corrective actions to fix the design) in what he shipped to you. That all says that he did not do adequate testing prior to shipping first product, he corrected based upon customer issues, and then he did not adequately test his corrective actions either. My experience as an engineer makes me suspect that if there were that many fixes needed, there are more design defects turning up in use.

Be afraid of his product...

Billski
Well Billski, I think the process is working well when product improvements are pushed out to the customer. My thoughts regarding your comments are that your sliding down a slippery slope of conjecture. You have no idea of the "defects" or corrective actions. You are making the assumption that 2 or more serious defects were shipped. 3 corrective actions were not relative to any failures, but testing by Jan that were to enhance product reliability. This states, to me, that he did do testing and that improvements were made to enhance the product. They were not corrections due to any failure.

In my EAA chapter alone I have witnessed numerous failures associated with Lycoming, Jabiru, Pmags, etc. All having failures that were corrected. Now did those manufacturers not test? Of course they did and issues surfaced that have been corrected/improved. I believe this is the case with Viking.

I have 50+ years playing in the aviation community, have worked on MANY aircraft in a maintenance capacity (have an A&P cert) so some experience in this realm. Every company that I have dealt with has never had a perfect product and continues to improve what they offer. Viking is no different.

And I will not be afraid of this product, nor will many hundreds of other customers. This is what the experimental world is all about as far as I am concerned.

If you don't want to deal with Viking then that is your decision. I am not saying that is good or bad. You are a big boy and can think and do what you want. So can I. I will continue to play with this product and have fun doing it.
 

rv7charlie

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My perspective is that if you made changes to improve performance beyond what was initially claimed, and met, then there's nothing to see here.

If, on the other hand, your failure was 'your fault' because an undersized heat exchanger was sold/shipped as adequate for the engine/application, that's another matter entirely. Same applies to any/all other changes.

If Jan is now supplying upgraded parts to replace discovered inadequacies *at no cost to the customer*, he is to be commended for that. But if it's true, it's a radical departure from his earlier policies, if we can believe the accounts of many customers over at least a couple of decades. What you're hearing from the critics here is that if someone they know got burned, they feel a strong desire to not have the same experience, and you're hearing their desire to make anyone new to the field aware of the risks. Same as looking for a carpenter, painter or plumbing contractor.

Just to show you that I, at least, am not purely focused on Jan, I have similar criticism for Lycoming and some other traditional suppliers.
 

Victor Bravo

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But in aviation, there is also a very significant difference in the price that a customer will possibly pay for an oversight, hubris, or even an honest innocent mistake by an engine supplier. A cell phone that is sent out to the public with a software glitch that can erase your favorite dancing cat video is not the same as an aircraft engine where you're looking at a forced landing because of a small glitch.
 

addicted2climbing

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When I was looking seriously at building a Zenair Cruzer, I spoke to Sebastian directly and we discussed engines and when I brought up Viking and his reply was. "well that is an option but for what its worth we dont use them"
 

Rhino

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But in aviation, there is also a very significant difference in the price that a customer will possibly pay for an oversight, hubris, or even an honest innocent mistake by an engine supplier. A cell phone that is sent out to the public with a software glitch that can erase your favorite dancing cat video is not the same as an aircraft engine where you're looking at a forced landing because of a small glitch.
True, but if that logic condemned Viking, then it condemns all the others too. There is no failure free engine out there, and I know of no aircraft engine in existence that didn't have issues raised by customer usage that prompted an upgrade to some part of those engines. It would be great if there were. I find it somewhat illogical to condemn an engine manufacturer using a list of issues where the only failure was caused by the builder, and all the others are the result of improvements in the products. So if Lycoming or Continental come out with improvements to their engines that can be retrofitted to the existing products, how exactly is that a bad thing? And if that's so bad, why is only Viking being badmouthed and accused of hubris when every engine manufacturer fits in that very same bucket? Viking may have issues, or maybe it's a personality thing with Jan, but you can't say Viking engines are bad using the very same criteria that applies directly to every other engine manufacturer, while saying those other engines are better even when they experience the same circumstances. The blame should be put where it lies. It's apparent Jan had issues previously, and that his people skills could use some work, and obviously some hold that against him permanently. For some that stance may be justified. But you can't claim a deficiency in Viking engines because you have a grudge or bias against Jan or his past dealings, when those engines have experienced no worse failures than any other engine. Whether you like him or hate him, and whether he got it wrong or got it right with his previous Subaru engines, you can't make an argument that his current engines are bad, at least not based on anything we've seen here.
 
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dog

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One thing I will say for team ICE is that they juggle a huge number of factors with small
margins to get from dinoaur goo to thrust.
One excellent coment in another thread comented on a new conecting rod type by
calling it (pariphrasing) a "new toy for detonation to play with"
HBA is filled with enough bits and pieces about
just about everything to do with power plants
off all kinds,by everyone from shade tree mechanics,to well pretty much the nose bleed
levels,and been there didnt do that ,on to the next thing engine developers.
Point bieng.
Anybody developing an engine and overlooking
the resourse here is so very likely to be working
behind the curve.
Turning it into a discussion of who,nope you get a name after your product powers a "runnway inspection" and the old farts come
rushing out asking each other "what was THAT?",checking to see if they spilled there
beverage in thier haste,you have seen it right?
the belly look!
Not getting that vibe here.
 

PatrickW

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Cresson, TX
My personal experience with Viking has been 100% positive.

When I have ordered something from them they have always shipped it fast and gave me a tracking number. When I ask them questions they answer fast. In my experience their products work the way they say they will. I have personally seen them fly behind their own product, compete in STOL contests (and win!) and then fly cross country back home. They've always done what they said they'll do.

Their customer service is on par with Wicks, Aircraft Spruce, and McMaster. First rate in my experience.

And they continuously improve their products. While that's very difficult in certificated aviation, we here in the -->EXPERIMENTAL<-- arena should be more supportive of that. In a way, we're ALL test pilots already; whether it's in an airplane built by our own hands which contains the newest technology, or an ancient factory-built certificated aircraft with thousands of hours on the Hobbs and decades of truly unknowable history.

I trust very few people, and I won't presume to tell YOU who to trust. But I'll give you some examples of people you should NOT trust when it comes to Aviation (examples of which can be seen posted within this thread):

  • Anybody who simply parrots opinions regarding topics upon which they have zero direct FIRST-HAND experience.
  • Anybody who tells you what you should do, but can't actually walk over to their OWN airplane and point to exactly what they're talking about.
  • Anybody who sells stuff out of a trailer but who doesn't actually fly behind their OWN products.
  • Anybody touting an engine that has never powered an airplane that has ever landed at a fly-in.

I'm nobodies salesman. Just sharing my personal experience and observations.

Patrick Hoyt
N63PZ
 
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