For landing gear work it is essential, for jacking up
I’ve done plenty of landing gear work out in the open. You just choose a day when it’s not blowing a hoolie.
I would not recommend that
Aside from doing 50hr checks, changing oil and filter every 25 hours, regularly running camguard in oil; I regularly dump my engine monitor data and analyze, run oil analysis at every oil change, roughly about every 10 hours I remove the cowling and look for leaks, loose bolts/screws and every 50 hours I boroscope the cylinders/valves.
Would it not be great if one could change the oil without stripping off the cowlings?
Maybe you can on some types.
Changing the oil at 25hrs is often recommended, but then you should change the filter too, and send the oil off for analysis.
I think it is better to do a proper service at say 35-40hrs, or whenever convenient around that point. The cowlings are off and you can eyeball the whole thing, check for exhaust system condition, alternator brushes, plugs, both filters, oil and fuel leaks, etc. On a EASA-reg you are screwed if you reach 50hrs when away from base. On an N-reg you can go over the 50 if on a long trip…
Would it not be great if one could change the oil without stripping off the cowlings? Maybe you can on some types.
Oil changes on many older planes take about 10 minutes using a quick drain fitting and a drain hose tucked into the cowling, pulled clear of the plane and into a bucket. Often times there is no filter. It takes longer to dispose of the oil than to do the oil change – which is why on occasion I’ve ended up with 20 gallons of used oil in my hangar.
On an N-reg you can go over the 50 if on a long trip
On N-reg there isn’t a regulatory 50 hour check. (Or a 100 hour check for that matter if you’re not operating commercially).
Indeed, but you have to change the oil sometime
And much after 50hrs it gets like the black sticky stuff they put on the roads
using a quick drain fitting
I do actually have one of those but it seems a missed opportunity to not change the oil filter too. But then on the TB20 that can be done with just the upper cowling off, which is easy. It is just possible to get a long thin arm up through the cowling gap at the bottom, put a drain tube onto the drain, and release the drain…
Not had to do this yet (due to the lack of a rigid 50hr point) however.
This thread (linked under “possibly related” below) is relevant.
All the planes I’ve owned have had full size hinged and latched upper cowlings providing full upper engine access from either side. My current plane has a remote oil filter easily accessible with the right side of the cowling open. My previous plane had no engine oil filter, so that was not a consideration. I change the oil about every 25 hours, plus or minus a few, whenever its convenient and I remember to do it. Nobody but me is involved in either keeping track or doing the work.
I could probably do an oil and filter change on the husky without removing any cowling. Although safety wiring the filter would be more of a pain. I go for oil change at around 40 hours but pull the cowling for a more detailed inspection and any other bits I want to look at or check.