Tank Selector Valve - Andair, Newton, or...?

Discussion in 'Firewall Forward / Props / Fuel system' started by wsimpso1, Dec 4, 2018.

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  1. Dec 4, 2018 #1

    wsimpso1

    wsimpso1

    wsimpso1

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  2. Dec 4, 2018 #2

    rv6ejguy

    rv6ejguy

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    I've used a Andair for 15 years and most of my hundreds of aircraft customers have too. I like the feel of the detents and action, have to lift the knob to turn it off and have had no seeps or leaks. Inexpensive it isn't though. If your return lines are longer than 4 feet, I'd go with 3/8 return fittings.

    I have no direct experience with other brands of duplex valves so there may be something out there which is cheaper and just as good.
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2018
  3. Dec 5, 2018 #3

    BJC

    BJC

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    If I had a need for such a valve, I would take out a loan and order the Andair.


    BJC
     
  4. Dec 5, 2018 #4

    proppastie

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    are you happy with your Piper valve?.. probably lots of them out there reasonably priced from a salvage yard.
     
  5. Dec 5, 2018 #5

    gtae07

    gtae07

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    I went Andair as well. In fact it's sitting on my desk here as I type this--I'm doing some CAD work trying to figure out how to mount it and my throttle quadrant. (I've found it always works better to do it this way, than to try and figure it out in situ--make the drawing, then follow MIL-TFD-41C)
    cadshot.jpg

    One tip--if you buy it, order it directly from Andair. It'll take a couple weeks but even with shipping and accessories (an extension) it was still much cheaper to do so than to buy it from Spruce.
     
  6. Dec 5, 2018 #6

    Toobuilder

    Toobuilder

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    I went with Andair also, and ordered it direct. I saved more than $100 bucks (really!) compared to the Spruce list price. It depends on the exchange rate present at the time of the order. I picked Andair because of suportability, experience, ease of availability, configuration options, and I didn't know there was another duplex valve even remotely comparable at the price.
     
  7. Dec 10, 2018 #7

    rv7charlie

    rv7charlie

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    With minimal increase in complexity, you could do what the turbines (and some of us homebuilders) do. Feed the motor from one tank, and transfer fuel to it with a transfer pump. A $20 shutoff valve & a $40 Facet will leave you a lot of gas money.

    Charlie
     
  8. Dec 15, 2018 #8

    wsimpso1

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    Thanks for the feedback. I have not made up my mind yet. The Andair is the RollsRoyce, while the Newton resembles a Chevy, a lot less money, looks great, except for its maybe being choked by the valve having 1/4" ports on the return line. I have to run the numbers on pressure drop for that and see if it matters.

    Billski
     
  9. Dec 15, 2018 #9

    rv7charlie

    rv7charlie

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    If you feed from a single tank, you don't need the duplex feature (regulator bypass is just plumbed back to the supply tank).
    If you're running electronic injection with Walbro style gerotor/roller-vane style pumps, you don't need a fuel shutoff (pump is positive displacement & won't pass fuel if it isn't running).
    If you only have two tanks (engine supply & aux), you can use a Facet transfer pump with an anti-siphon valve and now you need no manual valves at all.
    Even if you have multiple aux tanks, the little brass valve that Van's sells with their kits is flying in tens of thousands of homebuilts, and I've never heard of anyone having an actual problem with the later version, which has a synthetic insert mated with the brass barrel.

    The Andair is pretty, but if you eliminate the duplex requirement, it's a solution in search of a problem. :)

    I need to back-pedal on my earlier statement about 'minimal increase in complexity'. Given the elimination of the duplex valve, it might end up being simpler.

    What I'm describing isn't speculation; there have been alt-engine planes flying successfully for many years, and it's done in the certified world, too (think turbine a/c).

    Oops; just saw the link to your earlier thread. I'm curious; is your fuel system design dictated by the a/c designer, or is it your design? I can't see your exact situation, but it *sounds* like you could get away without the header tank. An RV-9 has fairly skinny leading edge tanks, and it has no problem at all with fuel feeding in and up 5 or 6 inches to the fuel selector (at around the 1/2 fuel level in the tank) and back down to the floor to the boost pump (or injection pump for electronic injection) and on to the engine. If the tanks have bays (typical in wet leading edges), a flapper valve on the 1st interior rib will trap plenty of fuel for intermittent excursions into uncoordinated flight (slips to landing, etc).

    Hope you don't mind; just offering some alternatives.

    Charlie
     
  10. Dec 15, 2018 #10

    gtae07

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    The Newton V4 valve has 1/4 and 3/8 NPT ports. 1/4 NPT is pretty close to a 3/8 AN in terms of diameter.

    But also note that buying direct from Andair, their valve is cost-competitive to buying the Newton one from Spruce... assuming they even have it in stock.


    Edit: did some research on fittings etc: the AN816-6 has a -6 AN male flare on one side and a 1/4NPT male on the other side. The ID on the NPT side is .264, and on the flared side is .297. The tubing (assuming 3/8 tube, .035 wall) would be .305 ID.

    If you order the Andair valve with female NPT ports, they'll be 1/4NPT.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2018
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  11. Dec 15, 2018 #11

    rv6ejguy

    rv6ejguy

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    Yup. A customer just checked pricing on an Andair Duplex valve last week. Even taking into account shipping, looks like he'd save $40-$50 direct from Andair over ACS.
     
  12. Dec 16, 2018 #12

    wsimpso1

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    Biggest issue buying from AS&S is they have only a couple versions of each valve - connections and remote operation - and I can get them direct from the makers as I want them.

    I have Newton caps - nice parts. Still thinking.

    Thanks for all the inputs.

    Billski
     
  13. Dec 16, 2018 #13

    wsimpso1

    wsimpso1

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    Alternatives are good, but my design is mostly in place. I was looking for commentary on duplex tank selector valves. Wings are built, tankage for my mission includes the header tank, and I need a selector valve.

    I have heard all of the comments about how drawing directly from RV wing tanks works great. This is not an RV. See http://www.homebuiltairplanes.com/forums/showthread.php?t=8344. Even with an anti-slosh door, fuel slides away from the finger screen pretty easily and leaves my unusable fuel level pretty high. If I have to draw from the wing to the FI system, momentary unports from the wing result in a slug of air going through the system. While that air is in the rail, the injectors flow air for a few strokes. Drawing from the header tank, momentary unports of the wing tanks are meaningless.

    Now if someone has a straightforward proven method for keeping the FI rail full of fuel even when the pump shoves a slug of air through the line, I want to hear a lot more.

    I do find disturbing that a number of folks feel certain things are "unnecessary" or "not needed". A fact of life is that once in a while something will break. We should configure our systems so that when that happens, it is an interesting day, but safety of that flight should never be in doubt. When you put in the absolute minimum or only go as far as minimally equipped ships, certain little failures result in the lights going out or the engine stopping. In my electrically dependent engine, I will not be comfortable with one pump and one way to run the ignition. So, yes, it is a little more complicated. If the whole scheme for getting fuel from wings to header go to crap, I plan to find out about it with nearly an hour of fuel in the header. See http://www.homebuiltairplanes.com/forums/showthread.php?t=30876

    So, has anyone got any experience with Newton duplex fuel valves? Their fuel caps are nice.

    Billski
     
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  14. Dec 17, 2018 #14

    rv7charlie

    rv7charlie

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    Well, You certainly know your needs better than we do. But you've got to admit, that's not always the case on the interwebs. I can't offer any pireps on the two valves you mentioned. But here are a couple of other ideas.

    https://www.amazon.com/GROCO-FUEL-V...F8&qid=1513088654&sr=8-2&keywords=groco+valve

    And since you'll be electrically dependent anyway,

    http://www.partdeal.com/pollak-6-port-motorized-valve-and-connector-42-302p.html

    or
    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_...+port+fuel+,automotive,322&crid=2DQSSSQQNIVJJ

    Charlie
     
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  15. Dec 17, 2018 #15

    gtae07

    gtae07

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    I searched a long time for info on the Newton valves, as I too am pleased with their fuel caps and the customer service I received when I needed a new flange. Unfortunately I found almost nothing at all about the valves. Spruce doesn’t have them in stock at any location, at least last time I checked. I think even the SPRL/Newton website says they are special order components.

    Also note that I’m pretty sure we in the US don’t have to pay the VAT on the Andair valves if you order them direct.

    And finally, I agree re: people trying to tell me what I “don’t need” or “what you really want is...”
     
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  16. Jan 29, 2019 #16

    rv7charlie

    rv7charlie

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    Billsky,

    You mentioned using 3/8" supply & 1/4" return lines. Were those ID sizes, or AN -6 & -4 lines?
     
  17. Jan 29, 2019 #17

    wsimpso1

    wsimpso1

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    Intending AN6 and AN4 at the time, but the forum educated me. Several respondents argued for AN6 as the minimum at my horsepower for everything. I limbered up the fluid's textbook, and I now have to numbers to back them up - AN4 is too small.

    That being said, the Andair duplex valve FS20-20 has AN6 flare connections or 1/4 NPT or AN6 banjo fittings. The Newton V9 looks to be the right valve from them, is designed to be full flow AN6, it has 1/4 NPS threads and fittings to go with AN6 lines. At AS&S, the Newton is $349 and looks good, while the Andair is $475 and looks fabulous. You pay your money and make your choices...

    Billski
     
  18. Jan 29, 2019 #18

    wsimpso1

    wsimpso1

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    I like these GROCO valves. Too bad they are so big and heavy. 1/4 NPT version would be great, better would be 1/4 NPT in anodized aluminum.

    Those electric valves would mean having to put two in parallel. If power to them goes out, I bet they just stay put on last setting...

    Bill
     
  19. Jan 29, 2019 #19

    Toobuilder

    Toobuilder

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    Its been said before but bears repeating here - the actual pricing from Andair is linked to the exchange rate and swings wildly. On my last purchase, the swing was very much in my favor and I was able to buy brand new and have it shipped cheaper than people were asking for used parts (let alone Spruce's price). Check the Andair website before you pull the trigger!

    Update- the FS20-20 you quoted from Spruce for 475 is right now listed at $377 direct from Andair.
     
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