AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - 94

P&Eā€ƒ

SAVVY MAINTENANCE

THE OIL FILTER MEDIA

contained a small
number of metallic
flakes that were
non-magnetic and
had a yellowish
appearance.

WHEN YOUR ENGINE TALKS, LISTEN

94ā€‚|ā€‚

Fast forward about a decade. Frank flew
his Cirrus on its annual pilgrimage from
Southern California to Oshkosh, Wisconsin,
for EAA AirVenture. After the show, he continued up to Canada before heading back
home. During this extended cross-country,
Frank had the vague sense that the engine
wasn't running quite as smoothly as usual.

He decided to make a stop just northeast of
Minneapolis at a shop that specialized in
propeller balancing and vibration analysis.
To rule out the ignition system as the
source of the perceived roughness, the
A&P owner of that shop sent both magnetos out for overhaul and replaced all 12
spark plugs. While waiting for the mags to
come back, he changed the oil and cut open

the oil filter for inspection. The filter media
contained a small number of metallic flakes
that were non-magnetic and had a yellowish appearance.
This small quantity of metal wasn't particularly alarming. On the other hand, the
engine had now accumulated more than
3,500 hours and didn't seem to be running
quite as smoothly as usual. Frank had a visceral sense that the engine was trying to talk
to him, and he'd decided he'd better listen.
At my recommendation, Frank sent out
an oil sample and the filter media for laboratory analysis. The oil analysis report
came back with no elevated wear metals.
However, the scanning electron microscope
(SEM) report for the filter media stated:
" A trace amount of bronze flakes were
removed from the filter element, closest
match AMS 4842, ranging in size from 788
X 455 to 546 X 448 microns. "
Aerospace Material Specification (AMS)
4842 is a leaded bronze alloy of copper, tin,
and lead and used primarily in bearings. I

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AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021

Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - Intro
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - Cover1
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - Cover2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - 2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - 3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - 4
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - 5
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - 7
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - 112
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - Cover3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - June 2021 - Cover4
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