Hangar Flying

Hangar Flying => Hangar Flying => Topic started by: Radioflyer on November 08, 2005, 10:28:14 PM

Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Radioflyer on November 08, 2005, 10:28:14 PM
I've come across a good looking LongEz with a basic IFR panel and O-235L2C. I'ld love to buy it, but I'm a little leary of its Basic Empty weight. The certification plaque says 953, but I think I saw something in a weight & balance calculation saying it was more like 980 pounds. My intuition is that I willl be flying with a noticeable penalty in range, payload capacity, flying speed, and/or "stallling" speed.

So this is a judgement call...is it prudent to buy a nicely built plane that is on the heavy side or would I be better off finding something, even if less nicely finished, weighing between a more normal 830 to 875 pounds (for an L2C)? I know there is no clear answer to this issue, but comments would be appreciated.
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Waiter on November 09, 2005, 06:03:23 AM
Your Call!

My O-320 with an 45lb MT prop weights in right at 1,000lbs.  

1,000 sounds heavy for an O-235, but I guess it depends whats in it.

Weight has a significant impact on performance, particularly takeoff/landing with a fized pitch prop, and more significantly with a O-235 vs a O-320.

Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Drew on November 09, 2005, 07:29:49 AM
My 0320 Longez was about 975.  This included the extra wt I had to carry upfront in my short nose to balance things out.
I was not that happy in the summer months taking off out of short fields.  I did not realize how unhappy I was until I put an 0320 on.  I would either get one with an 0320----or get one with no engine----or a wornout 0235---then trade up.

The plane sounds a little heavy for an 0235---but what does it have in it?  Short noses and light pilots are going to have heavier airplanes due to the extra lead up front.  If you don't have a lightwt starter, that will really make your airplane heavy (lots of balance in the nose.  Sloppy builds with too much epoxy will also hurt.
Title: Re: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Joe Dubner on November 09, 2005, 07:51:38 AM
Quote from: "Radioflyer"
My intuition is that I willl be flying with a noticeable penalty in range, payload capacity, flying speed, and/or "stallling" speed.

My O235-L2C Long-EZ is also nice-looking (but only VFR) and weighs 971 pounds.  Part of that weight increase is due to its nice finish (lots of filler and paint) and part is due to the heavy equipment I have installed (33 AH battery, large alternator, ham radio gear, large wheels/tires/pants, etc.)  Although YMMV lets address each of your concerns:

1.  range:  at 5 GPH in cruise, 140 KTAS, and 52 gallons of fuel possible, there's no penalty in range :-)  The airplane will fly longer than I care to.

2.  payload capacity:  my lady friend and I are both "lightweights" -- not over 300 pounds between both of us.  Takeoff and climb performance are noticeable degraded (dual with a big fuel load and luggage) but still very decent although it doesn't do well above 12,500 MSL until shedding some fuel wieght.  With no luggage and medium fuel (e.g. out for a $50 hamburger) there's no issue.  Solo under those circumstances, well ... it's a rocket!

3.  flying speed:  weight isn't much of a factor in the induced drag required to compensate for the additional wight.  My R.A.C.E. results were pretty decent with speeds of 185 - 190 mph.

4.  "stalling speed":  all I know is the IAS when I get the pitch bob -- about 63 mph (working from memory here) which seems pretty standard.  (I realize IAS != CAS at this AOA.)

That said, of course I'd like better climb performance.  OTOH, I really like my "creature comforts" and the look of the nice finish on the airplane.  Except for takeoff performance on shorter runways at higher density altitude,  the climb performance is at least adequate (and often very good).

Of course, an O320 would let me have my cake and eat it too <g>.
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Radioflyer on November 09, 2005, 07:52:35 AM
My guess is that the extra weight comes from saturated layups and lots of filler in the finish. The plane's finish is beautiful like a high gloss surfboard. Nicely crafted plane.
The engine has no lightweight components...stock starter, alternator, vacuum pump, mags,etc. I don't recall seeing any lead ballast in the nose. The panel has Nav, Com, Loran, Autopilot, Attitidue & Directional gyros, and the standard flight and engine steam guages. Nose lift is stock wind-up.
The thing is that if I put light stuff on the engine and lighten up a few things, the max I think I can loose is about 20 pounds. However, that's a WAG.
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Drew on November 09, 2005, 11:14:03 AM
Joe's writeup is very good

In a short nose, the lead weight is forward of the battery.  A stock starter (like a prestolite) is way too heavy.  If you buy that plane, get rid of the starter and put on a skytec or B&C or you can even make brackets for a Honda starter.  The prestolite type starter has to weigh 15 or more lbs---which of course means that you have to balance that on the front end too.

Number of flight hours on the airframe is important (ones that don't have much flight time may have problems----ones that do have lots of flight time are proven) as well as builder/seller reputation.  If the builder/seller seems slimy---run.
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: wvshoem on November 09, 2005, 11:29:13 AM
Your guess of about 20 pounds is right on. I replaced my Prestolite satrter and alternator with automotive versions for a difference of 20 pounds. Replacing mags with electronic ignition will help a little.

Although you won't get your O235 L2C to run with an O320, you can certainly make some significant improvements to it. I installed 10:1 pistons, balanced, ported and polished, have electronic ignition and will have ram air on my O235. None of these things adds any weight (infact it reduces it some), but there can be a significant horsepower increase. Mine hasn't flown yet, bet the gentleman that rebuilt my engine insists I'll see nearly 150 hp. We'll see.
Title: buying a Longeze
Post by: Bruce Hughes on November 09, 2005, 12:42:49 PM
Hi.  The 320 is pretty much standard for Longezes.   Do NOT (I mean NOT)
buy the 235 equipped Longeze with the thought of rebuilding the engine
to get more horsepower.   The cost is not worth it.   10:1 compression
will cause serious stress on the engine.   Either buy the 235 and fly it
(less fuel needed) or find a 320 to buy.

DO plan to use electronic ignition (and one mag)(or EI both sides).

DO plan to use an Ellison throttle body OR fuel injection.

2 cents from a non-expert........   Learned the hard way.

Bruce Hughes
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Drew on November 09, 2005, 03:36:33 PM
I have heard about problems with the hi-compression 0235.  I actually had one----had lots of problems---but most of the probs I had were cooling----which eventually failed several cylinders.  I eventually replaced the 0235 (because the cam lobes were shot) with an O320 and went to downdraft.  I never really got to experience the high compression probs due to the cooling problems masking any symptoms.

I did however have 10:1 in my O320.  Cooling was VERY good----and I did not appear to have any problems (ran it for several hundred hours).

Making a long nose will make your wt go down also
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Radioflyer on November 09, 2005, 07:43:04 PM
All of these responses to my inquiry have been exceptionally good food for thought. It sounds like the "heavy" will not be the tremendous dissapointment I thought it might be IF I don't mind sacrificing some climb rate. I can probably improve the situation by 20 pounds at least.
I'm glad there are several of you out there with heavier birds, but still satisfied. Thanks for speaking up.
I'll have to stick with an O-235. I think its all I can afford considering that  the spending won't stop with merely purchasing the plane. Lightweight starter, alternator, Electronic ignition, Ellison....
Title: LEZ Basic empty weight
Post by: easyrider on November 09, 2005, 09:03:49 PM
I have a LongEZ with a O-235L2C and it weighs 970 lbs.
I regularly fly over max wt. with a passenger and fuel for a decent trip.
It's a bit sluggish getting out of high density alt. airfields but flies great.
I have a Cato 3 blade 58x66. I cruise at 140 kts @ 6gph and 2580 rpm.
My weight is due to cockpit trim and decent seats and if you fly it within the "envelope" it is perfectly satisfactory.
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Drew on November 09, 2005, 09:53:30 PM
Double check the starter---make sure it is light weight---make sure you take care of this first.  The alternator should be ok.  You can live with mags---and trade up when you get an inflow of cash.  The carb will be fine too-----fuel injection is good too---but you can wait for the cash.  You never said if it were a short or long nose---but you can get some perf gains (drop some weight) by making it longer.

Make sure that you check the CG---make sure it is set up for your weight.  If the pilot you are buying from is lighter than you, then the plane will get lighter as you offload ballast.  If he is heavier than you, then you will be adding weight.

The lighter the plane, the more fun it is to fly.  15 gallons and solo, the plane is a screamer---and quite maneuverable.  Put a passenger and lots of gas, the plane becomes very "truckish".

My Cozy MKIV is faster and much more maneuverable than my Longez was. Unfortunately, it uses more runway too.  Can't get into the 2000ft strips like I could in a Longez (and you will probably not be able to do it with your 0235---solo maybe).
Title: LEZ Empty Weight
Post by: arjrmiller on November 11, 2005, 10:09:31 AM

You said the Cozy MkIV is faster than the LEZ.  In your opinion, is it all due to bigger motor, or the Cozy MkIV somehow more aerodynamically efficient than the LEZ?  

Put another way, how would the speeds of a MkIV with O-320 compare to an LEZ with O-320 assuming they were the same weight and similarly outfitted with wheelpants, etc.?

Does anyone know how the Cozy III compares in the same discussion?
And yes, I know that the speed differences normally may not make a huge difference in actual day to day trips.

(obviously trying to decided between a Long EZ and a Cozy)
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Glider pilot on November 11, 2005, 10:40:53 AM
Who says there cozy is faster than a long? Want to Race for Pinks? My IO 360 long eze against your IO 360 cozy. If you can't see 210 Knots then you best stay home! Yes Knots!
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Drew on November 11, 2005, 06:39:52 PM
Ah---you didn't really read my post, did you?  I said MY Cozy MkIV is faster and more maneuverable than MY Longez.  My Cozy has a O-360 and my Long had a O320.  Generally speaking, the Cozys have more potential to go faster due to its more cleaner lines.  The fuselage transition to the engine is much more cleaner in the Cozy due to the whole engine can "hide" back there whereas the Longez needs to "bump out".  Some Longez guys have been very good at minimizing this bumpout region to make them go fast---but the engine is wider than the fuselage.  The Cozy can generate stronger pitch, roll, and yaw rates.  The one that really matters is the roll rate.  Even though the Cozy has longer wings, I think it has a larger span aileron---and they are definitely more outboard.  The longer wings also give more yaw rate.  When you load up with lots of people, gas, stuff in the longez, it handles like a truck---sluggish in roll.  When you are light, it is quite spry in roll.  The Cozy is quite spry no matter how you load it.

Even though the Cozy is more maneuverable (and faster than my Long), I think I enjoyed flying the Longez more.  It was like strapping on a little fighter, could get in and out of 2000 ft strips, and lots of fun flying formation and sipped the gas.

Everyone that flys with me likes the Cozy better since they don't have to be stuck in back----and my wife enjoys that---and I needed the extra seats for an expanding family (+1).  While you had to be careful packing up the Longez for two (and it could be done), packing up the Cozy is a breeze.  The Cozy also sucks down more gas.

In general, I think you will find O320 Cozy IIIs outrunning O320 Longezs due to the aerodynamics.  However, you will always find an exception to the rule.  There are not that many O360 Longs out there compared to O320s/O235s.  You will find some very fast Longezs out there mostly due to builders who have spent careful attention to drag (cowl, cooling, sumps, gearleg fairings, wheelpants, transition zones, etc.)

I would not seriously race in either my Longez or my Cozy.  I have not invested that kind of time into those details to be competitive.

So in the end, it was the number of seats for me on why I got a Cozy----not the speed or maneuverability.

My Longez was dragger than most----and I would usually set 175mph IAS at all altitudes up to 10,000 ft----and still had more throttle to go.

On the Cozy, I usually put somewhere between 175-195mph IAS at all alts up to 10,000 ft---also with throttle still left.----So I guess I will have to stay at home and won't be able to come out and play  :(
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Radioflyer on November 12, 2005, 10:03:31 AM
Hey Drew,

In your post #140, way on top of this thread, did you mean to say that your your O-235 (and not the O-320) weighed 970 pounds? And if so, what was the resulting weight with the O-320 upconversion?
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Drew on November 12, 2005, 06:33:39 PM
From what I remember (and I may not be remembering correctly), I think I went from the low to mid 900s to about 970 (O320).  I think that I needed another 10lbs of ballast or so upfront.  Long noses are good when the backend gets heavy (I had a short nose).  The increase in weight was not that big of a deal----the climb perf and takeoff perf was eyewatering.

For my conversion...
-upper extrusions replaced and beefed up
-engine mount beefed up by Ronneburg
-vert master cylinders removed from firewall---laydown cylinders put upfront---stratoflex lines all the way
-cowls remade for downdraft cooling
-simplified baffling constructed
-push/pull cables
-wheelpants constructed
-Hal Hunt exhaust
-engine monitor
-Dynon Efis

Things that were not done but were on my list if I kept the plane
-Since I had the Hal Hunt exhaust, I could remove the engine hump on the lower cowl
-fair in the sump blisters
-gearleg fairings

Oh---one other thing I forgot to mention about Cozys and Longs.  The Longez is a more comfortable airplane for the pilot.  You actually have more room in the front seat of a Longez than a Cozy---even when solo in a Cozy.  That kind of sounds weird---but the Cozy airframe and canopy come real close to your head and left shoulder.  So even when you don't have a person sitting on the right side, you are still kind of scrunched on the left side.  This little nit is really not that objectionable----but you have all kinds of room in a Longez.  Now, if you want to talk about refolding charts in the cockpit, a Longez is just about impossible----and quite easy in a Cozy.
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Dave in Eugene on November 12, 2005, 11:19:39 PM
Drew... using round #'s would you be willing to disclose your budget to go from and 0-235 to an 0-320...


Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Drew on November 13, 2005, 07:17:18 AM
I looked in my Quicken file under airplane maintance for the time period in question and it came up to 23000 dollars---but this may have included things other than the upgrade.  Some of the obvious breakouts were:
-Lycon 0320EXP $15309 (included giving them my O235 core)
-Saber 8 inch extension $731
-Hertzler Silver Bullet $980
-Hal Hunt exhaust/carb box/stratoflex lines/rudder pedal welding for front master cylinders $1467
-Berkut Engineering--engine mount modification $150
-Engine Monitor-$1400

You will need metal and rubber baffling, hoses (hoses run about 300 or so for the who thing), glass, and epoxy (assuming you are doing downdraft).

Other things needed----oil cooler, starter, alternator, etc.  The bigger engine will take bigger hoses and fittings (-8?).

I have documented somewhere on this site the parts I used for push pull cables---and some tips on how to do it.  Don't use the bike cables for the O320!  As a matter of fact---for all pusher guys out there that have the bike cables----take the return spring off the throttle and see if you can still actuate the throttle.  If you can still actuate in both directions----but looks like it would be "spongy" in the air---this is ok.  The spring is supposed to take the "spongy-ness" out of the system.  If you cannot actuate the throttle in both directions, then don't fly the plane----convert to push pull.  Rutan only intended the spring to take the sloppiness out of the system
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Bruce Hughes on November 19, 2005, 04:57:07 AM
Someone said to replace the starter with a Skytec, B & C, or Honda.
I don't know which Honda starter he is talking about but I had a LOT
of trouble trying to start with a Honda.   Even got a new one when the
old one would not do it.   No Joy.   I junked it and got a B & C.

Also dumped the old gas and put in some new gas at the same time.  
So I DON'T REALLY KNOW that the Honda was the problem.   The B & C
is geared and the Honda was not.  

I THINK the Honda was the trouble or at least part of the trouble.   The
damn thing cost me big bucks because I bought new spark plugs, mail
charge for the electronic ignition to be checked, rebuilt magneto, new
battery.  :(

I think NON-GEARED starters are worthless.
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Waiter on November 19, 2005, 11:05:33 AM
I have a Toyota Camry starter. Permanent magnet and geared, with built in starter solenoid.  Cranks an O-320 with no problems.

There was a guy who sold these a couple years ago. It was an adapter plate that mounted up to the standard starter pad, then the Toyota starter bolted to this. I think it already mates to the 144 tooth ring.

Title: Re: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Joe Dubner on November 19, 2005, 12:19:17 PM
Quote from: "Bruce Hughes"
I think NON-GEARED starters are worthless.

Bruce, please send me all your surplus non-geared starters.   And how about your old spark plugs and battery too? :-)

Like Waiter, I have an automotive starter (Honda or Toyota; can't remember which) on my Lyc O235-L2C (with high compression pistons).  It has a built-in "solenoid" that is jumpered to the main power lead which is fed through an additional external starter "solenoid".  (These "solenoids" are really contactors, not solenoids.)  Two friends in Phoenix milled me an aluminum mounting bracket for it.  Replacing my old Prestolite with it did three things:
  1.  Saved me a few pounds in the nearly the worst possible location.
  2.  Cranked the engine faster.  Starting is a non-issue.
  3.  Netted me a few bucks when I sold that old boat anchor to a Cessna owner on eBay.

There are any number of reasons (electrical and mechanical) why a particular starter fails in a particular application.  For instance, a permanent magnet starter could drop the battery voltage enough that an EI would not fire correctly if the electrical system was not suitable.  It would be informative to learn the root cause of your particular problem.
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Radioflyer on November 20, 2005, 09:24:24 AM
I need to save as much weight as I can. I knew about the B&C and Skytec starter alternatives for the O-232L2C. The Skytec is the lighter one of the two and seems to work well. I didn't know there was a Toyota Camry conversion. Would it be significantly lighter and less expensive than the Skytec?
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Waiter on November 20, 2005, 01:13:52 PM
Would it be significantly lighter and less expensive than the Skytec?

Probably about the same weight (maybe slightly heavier) 1/2 the cost. PLUS, If your starter ever takes a dump, any automotive parts store in the world will have a replacement for $50.
I got mine several years ago, Look in the back of Sport Aviation. You might also look in Trade-A-Plane. It was some guy in FL that had them.

ALSO, Take a look on E-Bay, Look under "AirBoat starter"

Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Radioflyer on November 23, 2005, 06:59:42 AM
I looked at the starters in eBay. That was a good tip and am glad I found out about these starters.
I did get a hint somewhere else that the SkyTec starters are mechanically weak, often stripping the ring gear. This is supposedly due to the starter pinion not being supported on the outboard end like the original prestolites. The airboat starters are also not supported on both ends. They might be more rugged than the lighter Skytecs, though. Have they been working well for you?
Title: LEZ Basic Empty Weight
Post by: Waiter on November 23, 2005, 08:41:55 AM
I'm not using the "Airboat" starter. but If I was looking for a starter, I would buy one.

I'm using the Toyota Camry starter. This one requires an adapter. The adapter bolts to the standard starter pad, then the Toyota starter bolts to the adapter.

I'm pretty sure I got it out of Trade-A Plane (10 years ago).

I haven't checked the pinion for any play, I'll give it the "wiggle" test this weekend.

I'm very happy with mine, and would highly recommend it.