Diagnosing Rotax 2 stroke aircraft engine piston failure in ultralights, ultralight aircraft, microlights, amateur built aircraft, experimental airplanes, home built aeroplanes, powered parachutes and trikes.

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Rotax engine piston failure - reasons for failure.

Diagnosing piston failureRotax piston failure

This section is designed to guide you through the detection of engine conditions which lead to piston failure in two stroke ultralight aircraft engines. It will also aid you in analysis of the reason which caused those failures.

A sound knowledge of the relationship between the conditions that caused the failure and the operational environment of the engine can help direct owners to area's of maintenance that will lead to increasing service life of the engine.

Analyzing piston failure is very complex, due to the many variables. In many cases the failure was caused by a combination of  borderline conditions, during the operation of the engine.

Failure Analysis:

To determine the type of failure you must first disassemble the engine.

During removal of the piston observe the condition of the bearings, wrist pins, cir clips, rings and connecting rod, cylinder interior and exterior. Look for obvious damage, discolouration, scratches or unusual marks.

If only one piston has failed carefully look at the other to see if you can see early stage of failure which will help diagnose reasons for the failure.

Failures can be related to "time" thus it is important that all available information re the engine be available. Pilot logs, engine maintenance records etc. can help trace the reason for the failure.

During disassembly of the engine you are performing an "autopsy"
do not destroy evidence - observe as you disassemble.

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