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MadMan

Fuel valve in cockpit

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Assembled my fuselage the other day :D I did the upside down on the bench and it went very well. I have to say that as this project is very exciting as it comes together! I'm looking for some ideas, Does anyone have any pic's or maybe a link to a builders site that has retrofitted the fuel valve out of the cock pit? I'm ready to assemble the seat brace and would like to move the valve out of the seat and out of the cockpit. I don't like the idea of gas flowing in and out. (a big no no in any kind of racing) seems like it could be very dangerous in a bad situation.

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Sorry, but it's not a problem in my Aeronca Chief, Partenavie P64B, Cherokee 6.300, nor my Cozy Mk IV ... yes, fuel is dangerous etc, etc ... but plumb it correctly and as per plans & I don't see a problem, ... if you feel really insecure, you can move all you stuff to different places ... all you will do is move the problem, but fuel you will need to run the show :) Man, I have solutions to problems I never imagined!

 

Follow the plans, enjoy the plane!


I live in my own little world! but its OK, they know me here!

Chris Van Hoof, Johannesburg, South Africa operate from FASY (Baragwanath)

Cozy Mk IV, ZU-CZZ, IO-360 (200hp) 70x80 prop

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ZUCZZ is right. Most spam cans have the fuel valve in the cockpit.

 

There is also some speculation that this may have contributed to John Denvers crash. On the plane he bought, the fuel valve was moved to the firewall. A long torque tube was psitioned over the left shoulder that ran all the way back to the fuel valve.. To reach it you had to twist the body to reach over the left shoulder.

 

I tried this in my plane as a simulation. It could easliy be a major distraction. As I twisted, my right foot wanted to naturally moved forward. As to Denver, this is speculation not known facts.

 

Routing the fuel lines forward is a well known, simple and common practice. Having the fuel valve at your fingertips is also very convenient.

 

Of course, it's your decision.

 

I chose to build an experimental airplane. I also tried to use common sense and keep everything else as conventional as possible. I did not want to have an endless list of experimental components and or subsystems.

 

I left that to more adventurist types.

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The plans location is a tried and proven location for the fuel valve. On the other hand, The original plans fuel valve is a piece of junk.

 

Get a good quality fuel valve (aviation junk yard) slap some new o-rings in it, install it at the plans location, and your good to go.

 

I can't think of a situation where locating the fuel valve elsewhere would make for a safer aircraft.

 

Moving the fuel valve to a firewall location would require additional linkage, torque tubes, etc, to operate it, this adds more failure modes.

 

Whats the higher risk; a small qualtity of fuel inside an aluminum tube running along both side of the cabin, or, 50 gallons of fuel just on the other side of that fiberglass bulkhead!

 

Waiter


F16 performance on a Piper Cub budget

LongEZ, 160hp, MT CS Prop, Downdraft cooling, Full retract

visit: www.iflyez.com

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I like what Wayne Hicks did with his fuel valve. The Andair valve is purdy. He mounted is up forward of the throttle quadrant on the center console.

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My fuel valve is on the firewall and the handle is above my right shoulder. (At least I don't have to let go of the stick to change tanks.) I bought the project partially complete and that's where it was. The original builder did a beautiful job of it, it works quite smoothly and no great bodily gyrations to get at it.

 

Regardless of where you put it, be sure you can operate it easily. The time you absolutely NEED to get at it is going to be the wrong time and one not of your choosing.

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My valve was also on the firewall with a nice torque tube going all the way back. You could feel the valve clunk into position just like it was right there. The torque tube was unlike the torque rod that the varieze had---which had quite a bit of "give" to it.

 

Mine was also over the right shoulder---and I had no issues with it--easy to change tanks.

 

John Denver had multiple problems:

-rudder pedals not yet adjusted---so he had a cushion of some sort behind his back pushing him more forward and away from the valve handle.

-valve handle not working quite right (using vice grips instead?)

-valve handle on left side instead of right side (you have to let go of the stick).

 

And if you use a bad (sticky) fuel valve---it will give you trouble on both the firewall and between your legs.

 

On my cozy, the fuel valve is in the cockpit----but not all that different in location as to where my handle was in my longez (longez--right side shoulder; cozy--right side hip).

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Tell you about the position of the Cozy Mk IV fuel valve ...

 

Initially I thought that this was the weirdest spot to put this item, after having flown it some hours (35) i can now tell you that it is not difficult to reach, manipulate or any problem that I perceived before the plane was flying :)

 

It now feels as natural as sticking your head under the dash of the Cherokee, or fumbling for the lever in the Aeronca :D

 

FWIW


I live in my own little world! but its OK, they know me here!

Chris Van Hoof, Johannesburg, South Africa operate from FASY (Baragwanath)

Cozy Mk IV, ZU-CZZ, IO-360 (200hp) 70x80 prop

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No offense personally, but I offer the opposite opinion. I hate the plans' seatback location for this fuel valve. Here are a few reasons why:

 

(1) I cannot get visual confirmation of the valve's position without twisting my head and upper torso. I have to release the left shoulder strap in order to do that.

 

(2) The valve is easily moved without intention. I had a seatbelt snag the valve handle once and it turned the valve without me knowing about it. I also bumped it off position a few times with my elbow.

 

(3) I forgot about fuel management once. (Not the valve location's fault, but I'll blame it anyway.)

 

Those are the main reasons why I moved my valve to the center console.


Wayne Hicks

Cozy IV Plans #678

http://www.ez.org/pages/waynehicks

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And that looks neat too! and of course, much more accessible :)


I live in my own little world! but its OK, they know me here!

Chris Van Hoof, Johannesburg, South Africa operate from FASY (Baragwanath)

Cozy Mk IV, ZU-CZZ, IO-360 (200hp) 70x80 prop

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The plans location is a tried and proven location for the fuel valve. On the other hand, The original plans fuel valve is a piece of junk.

 

Get a good quality fuel valve (aviation junk yard) slap some new o-rings in it, install it at the plans location, and your good to go.

 

I can't think of a situation where locating the fuel valve elsewhere would make for a safer aircraft.

 

Moving the fuel valve to a firewall location would require additional linkage, torque tubes, etc, to operate it, this adds more failure modes.

 

Whats the higher risk; a small qualtity of fuel inside an aluminum tube running along both side of the cabin, or, 50 gallons of fuel just on the other side of that fiberglass bulkhead!

 

Waiter

thats what i did :P

post-474-141090164287_thumb.jpg

post-474-14109016429_thumb.jpg

post-474-141090164293_thumb.jpg

post-474-141090164295_thumb.jpg


Steve M. Parkins

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On my Cozy, the handle is recessed in a "protected cup" between the seat cusions----nothing to snag. 99.9999% of the time, I fly in "both"----I have a left/right/both feed---so not really an issue for me. I can see that the seatback valve can be a nuisance for sure. Many people have come to the incorrect conclusion that a seat back mounted valve handle was the cause of Denver's crash. Not sure that everyone knew that most Cozy handles were on a seatback mount---as designed.

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Denver was not flying a Cozy - it was a Long EZ. The knob for the fuel valve, as I understand it, was located where he could not reach it because the builder was much taller than Denver. Denver used several pillows so that he could reach the rudder pedals, but this put the fuel selector out of reach over his shoulder. Struggling to reach the selector, he apparently stepped on the rudder pedal and that caused him to crash.

 

Additionally, the selector know was on an extension with a universal joint that went back to the firewall. It had to be turned with pliers or a wrench, IIRC.

 

Bottom line - he had already made arrangements to have the fuel selector moved. If he'd been patient, went on his tour and then come back to a repaired and painted airplane he'd still be with us. Or if he'd taken on fuel. Or if he'd stuck to his plan of doing a couple of T&G's... Or... sigh... :(


Phil Kriley

Cozy #1460

Chapter 13 - nose

Right wing done - working on right winglet.

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Denver was not flying a Cozy - it was a Long EZ.

Vari-Eze as I recall. The fuel valve location was according to plans at the time (if I'm not mistaken.)

T Mann - Loooong-EZ/20B Infinity R/G Chpts 18

Velocity/RG N951TM

Mann's Airplane Factory

We add rocket's to everything!

4, 5, 6, 7, 8. 9, 10, 14, 19, 20 Done

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Here's a picture of John and his plane with his new paintjob, just a day before his crash. Obviously a LongEze.

post-4661-141090164298_thumb.jpg


Self confessed Wingnut.

Now think about it...wouldn't you rather LIVE your life, rather than watch someone else's, on Reality T.V.?

Get up off that couch!!! =)

 

Progress; Fuselage on all three, with outside and inside nearly complete. 8 inch extended nose. FHC done. Canard finished. ERacer wings done with blended winglets. IO540 starting rebuild. Mounting Spar. Starting strake ribs.

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Vari-Eze as I recall. The fuel valve location was according to plans at the time (if I'm not mistaken.)

On October 12, 1997, Denver was killed when the Long-EZ aircraft he was piloting crashed just off the coast of California at Pacific Grove, shortly after taking off from the Monterey Peninsula Airport.

 

The Long-EZ is a two-seat experimental aircraft, designed in the 1970s by Burt Rutan. Denver's particular plane, N555JD, bought used, had been changed from Rutan's original published plans: The fuel tank selector valve had been moved from a location just aft of the nose gear wheel housing and between the pilot's legs to the bulkhead behind and to the left of the pilot's (front) seat.[8] This is of possible significance because it is believed Denver may have lost control of the aircraft during attempts to operate the fuel selector valve after running out of fuel in one tank. Witnesses stated that the plane made a sudden pitch-down plunge into the water, leading to speculation that, in reaching around to the rear, Denver bumped or kicked the side-stick control. The official investigation decided that he had likely inadvertently pushed the right rudder pedal trying to gain leverage to turn in his seat to reach the fuel handle.

 

A pilot with over 2,700 hours of experience, Denver had multiengine, instrument, and Learjet type ratings. He had recently purchased the Long-EZ aircraft and had taken a half-hour checkout flight with the aircraft the day before the accident. The NTSB cited Denver's unfamiliarity with the aircraft and his failure to have the aircraft refueled as causal factors in the accident. Denver was the sole occupant of the aircraft. Before the accident, the FAA had learned of his failure to abstain entirely from alcohol subsequent to prior drunk driving arrests, and since his medical certification was conditional on this, a determination was made that due to his drinking problem he was not qualified for any class of medical certification at the time. At least a third-class medical certification was required to exercise the privileges of his pilot certificate. There was no trace of alcohol or any other drug in Denver's body at autopsy, however.[8] As the wreck badly disfigured Denver's body, dental records were needed to confirm that the fallen pilot of the Long-EZ was indeed the singer.


Phil Kriley

Cozy #1460

Chapter 13 - nose

Right wing done - working on right winglet.

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I stand corrected. I believe that the placement of the valve was a holdover from the Vari-eze design. I kicked around the idea of moving it to the back but the input from Waiter and others made me realize that it was best to leave it on the instrument panel. :D

 

John should have bought fuel.


T Mann - Loooong-EZ/20B Infinity R/G Chpts 18

Velocity/RG N951TM

Mann's Airplane Factory

We add rocket's to everything!

4, 5, 6, 7, 8. 9, 10, 14, 19, 20 Done

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''shoulda bought fuel''- You are SOOOO correct about that, Tmann. Sure wish John was still around.:sad:

Hey, pics of your cool LongEze/Berkut hybrid wanted!!! Tease us!:D


Self confessed Wingnut.

Now think about it...wouldn't you rather LIVE your life, rather than watch someone else's, on Reality T.V.?

Get up off that couch!!! =)

 

Progress; Fuselage on all three, with outside and inside nearly complete. 8 inch extended nose. FHC done. Canard finished. ERacer wings done with blended winglets. IO540 starting rebuild. Mounting Spar. Starting strake ribs.

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Vari-Eze as I recall. The fuel valve location was according to plans at the time (if I'm not mistaken.)

the guy that was the last to see him did a long right up and the plan was to fix the valve as soon as he got home it was #1 on a short list of things to do on the plane:sad:

Steve M. Parkins

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Let me get back to my point which seemed to confuse the issue as to what airplane Denver had. Denver ran out of fuel due to bad headwork. You can say all you want about having fuel in the nonselected tank----but running out of gas on either tank on these machines is BAD headwork/pilot error. He continued bad head work and tried messing with a fuel valve that did not operate properly----and was installed in an unfortunate location (left shoulder). He most likely would have survived by accepting the fate of the engine out and just landing on the water.

 

Someone made mention that having the fuel valve on the seat bulkhead is bad and caused his accident-----My mention on Cozys was that if that was so....then explain the cozy design with the valve on the seat bulkhead.

 

My Longez had a fuel valve handle on the seat bulkhead (right shoulder) and was just fine the way it was.

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My Cozy III had the fuel valve, per plans, in between the front seats. During cross country flights, I planned to switch tanks every 30 minutes, primarily over an airport. With two people up front it was not difficult, nor dangerous, but I believe there is an easier way.

 

I agree with Wayne (when have I ever disagreed :) that if I were building, I would place the fuel valve where Wayne has it now. The key issue, if I were in the initial building phase, I would not necessarily do a major rebuild. I come from a very anal, non-flying, military background (that may be redundant), training is key. As long as you follow consistent procedures, as long as it is safe, you are fine.

 

That being said, I recently purchased a Velocity with the fuel valve in the cockpit by my right leg. It also has the "both valve." Having about 600 hours in the Cozy, I can tell you, I like this setup so much better.

 

I basically exchanged/traded my Cozy for my current Velocity. Ironically, the new Cozy owner was not comfortable, based on his Velocity experience, with the location of the fuel valve in the Cozy, and is having it moved up front.

 

Wayne - when I get back from my latest excellent overseas adventure, we will come visit (yup, with your schedule - I will call ahead of time).

 

Just my opinion flying both styles. Tim


Tim Walsh

Velocity 173FG (N129VA)

Based out of Manassas, VA (HEF)

 

Formerly - Cozy III, N923AC

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