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How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

Old 02-13-2012, 07:35 AM
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Firepower R/C
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Default How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

I recently aquired a used Evolution 1.00 (ABC) that the owner stated had only had 1 tank of fuel run through it since he bought it brand new. The engine looked great on the outside, but when I looked in the exhaust port it was totally covered in an opaque, dark brown coating. Pretty much black, actually. The piston was also covered with the same brown tarnish, EXCEPT the top 1/16" to 1/8" of the side... it looked shiny & worn. The cylinder had a few minor scratches, nothing to write home about, but the question begs: Could this engine possibly only have 1 tank of fuel through it? I have seen engines with 50 tanks through them that looked brand new through the exhaust port. I just want to be sure before I possibly take issue with the seller.

It does seem to have good compression when turned over by hand, but my fear is that it has been severly overheated. Any comments from the experts?

I will try to get a picure up later today.
Old 02-13-2012, 09:09 AM
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KLXMASTER14
 
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

That is the look one would expect from a well broken-in ABC type engine. One tank of gas???????? Not likely.

That is not to imply that the engine is "worn", just normal.
Old 02-13-2012, 09:43 AM
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Firepower R/C
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

Yeah, it is the "one tank of fuel" part that concerned me. Not "a few tanks" or "an hour or two" (which would have been fine), but ONE TANK on a test stand. The seller also said that after the one tank of fuel he decided that this engine didn't have enough power for the intended use.

Is it possible to turn the exhaust port and piston dark brown with one run, even with a lean run?

I am going home on lunch right now, and will snap some pics.
Old 02-13-2012, 10:46 AM
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pe reivers
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

Yes, it is possible, depending on tank size, and how hard the engine has been made to run.
Everything seems OK though.
Old 02-13-2012, 11:11 AM
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exeter_acres
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

I found a picture of the tank the previous owner used... hope this helps...


Old 02-13-2012, 11:24 AM
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Firepower R/C
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

Heh heh... that gave me a good laugh! Ok, here are a few pictures. Remember, this is one tank of fuel...

EDIT: oh, and the engine doesn't "smell" normal either... it kind of smells like burnt barbeque.
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Old 02-13-2012, 11:50 AM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

It takes a real hot run to get a piston coked up with burned on castor oil. One tank....BS! more like add a zero to the #1. minimum.
Old 02-13-2012, 11:51 AM
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BobH
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

What you are smelling is the burnt castor. That's also responsible for the discoloration. I would richen the engine some during running. If that picture shows the first runs it looks to have been run lean.
Old 02-13-2012, 12:02 PM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

I was more interested in the discoloration on the cylinder head.  It takes a little while for Castor to build up a discoloration on the cylinder.  Looks a bit like the outside has been cleaned up which is okay with me.  Does the engine run with power?  If so, I would not be to concerned about it.  But then if it does not run so good, well . . .
Old 02-13-2012, 12:40 PM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

This was one of my engines after several tanks of fuel was run through it on a test stand.
I took the pic at the time as we were discussing some other subject at the time.
Note that it hasn't had time to develop a nice castor oil patina yet.


Old 02-13-2012, 12:53 PM
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Firepower R/C
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

I haven't run the engine yet. I have 3 other Evo 1.00's to compare it to when I do though... I have one with a gallon of Omega 10% through it, it has no discoloration.
Old 02-13-2012, 12:57 PM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

I've got ABC's with 20+ hours on them that aren't that discolored. That engine obviously has more than one tank through it.
Old 02-13-2012, 01:12 PM
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estradajae
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

It has been run through several tanks!!

When I used to run 80% methanol and 20% castor oil (and maybe not from the greatest quality) my engines tended to look like this...it is all what the castor oil does so I think that is what happened to your engine.

The piston seems perfectly to me anyway... if you use a fuel like Omega or similar..you may never get stains like this...this only happens when you use only castor oil.
Old 02-13-2012, 01:14 PM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

I have just run in a new, but 20 year old TSI (Sanye?) .46 engine on home brew FAI (80% methanol; 20% Castrol R).

One pint of fuel through it (about three tanks). No discolouration of piston at all .. but it was never run lean.

It has really great P&L seal for a "cheap" engine.
Old 02-13-2012, 02:36 PM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

yep! A laaarge tank and castor oil. Run a bit lean as well.
Old 02-13-2012, 02:53 PM
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Firepower R/C
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

Thanks to all that chimed in. I will try to test the engine soon (hopefully tonight) and report back on the results.
Old 02-13-2012, 03:32 PM
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jimmyjames213
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

that is not a big deal, just castor stains, shouldnt effect the running
Old 02-13-2012, 06:01 PM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

Sounds like the engine I was looking at on eBay. Same description.
Old 02-13-2012, 06:02 PM
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fred985
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

that looks o k to me,,,fly the darn thing and stop worryin yourself to death.
Old 02-13-2012, 08:54 PM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

did you buy it here on RCU>?
Old 02-13-2012, 08:58 PM
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Firepower R/C
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

No, it was bought on ebay. Like jimmyjames says, the castor stains are no big deal, but this is about misrepresentation of the condition... you know, honesty. I know, a forgotten commodity to many now days. I just don't like it when I'm taken advantage of. That's all. Then again, maybe it was just a mix up with the seller.

There! I feel better already. I will try to run it tomorrow and see what it does. If it runs as good as my others, I will consider the matter closed. If not, well...
Old 02-13-2012, 09:36 PM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

If you run an engine lean by accident or just not knowing better, theres no better oil to do it with than castor. The castor probably saved the engine. Personaly I would disassemble the engine and devarnish it, but you probably don't have to. If it runs ok don't wory about it.

Rrragman
Old 02-13-2012, 10:26 PM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

Fly more, worry less.
Old 02-13-2012, 11:58 PM
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mike109
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

G'day

Sadly some people are not very honest and some have no idea what they are doing to their engines. I bought an Enya 40SS on eBay. Supposedly "little use". The piston was so loose in the bore it would just about fall through and had NO compression.

But then luckily, Ken Enya had a piston and liner for a quite reasonable price and the engine is now like new and going again.

Mike in Oz
Old 02-14-2012, 06:17 AM
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Default RE: How worn is this piston? Updated w/pictures

I'm with Per on this - one VERY large tank of fuel.

If it comes down to it, a replacement piston and liner assembly is only $40 from Horizon..

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