Engine Supplier Links
There has been alot of talk on replacements for the Rotax 185, my feelings are that this engine is quite adaquate for the task, parts are cheaply available, it is very reliable and robust,yes its a little heavy but I would soon carry a little extra weight in bigger crankshaft,bearings and cylinder mass than rely on some low mass finicky kart engine with a tuned pipe that has to screem at high rpm ,I just don't think it will last as long as the 185,but eh that just my opinion. I find it exciting that there are people out there who like to experiment ,just remember, if you are going to experiment, please share your experiences with the rest of us.
I have many hours on the 185, both in direct drive and re-drive modes, and have a very good opinion of them ,I have never experienced a seizure even though because of carb problems one engine on the float plane, ran lean for an extended period ,this caused the head to crack ,yet the engine still ran long enough to get home, its heavy steel lined aluminum cylinder has plenty of mass to give the engine a buffer that provides thermal stabilization for long take off runs on hot and high elevated lakes or prolong descents in ice cold weather and respond quickly when the throttle is opened, I get comments on how nice the engines sound idling ,they do not sound like your regular spitting and coughing 2 stroke, this engine has been proven in the most difficult environments ,just try to imagine what an abusive environment forest fire fighting pumps must function and be reliable in, high power settings,hot, smokey and dirty conditions, operators who lack respect or knowledge of equipment.Just to mention a few. Yes it is old technology ,but so is the trusted certified Lycoming and Continental G/A engines.
There are some heavier pilots out there who complain that the current power unit is not adaquate , that can't be argued with ,why should they be left out of the lazair experience, but moving up to power levels approaching 20-25 hp without investment in some airframe reconfiguration, would be unwise . Trying to convert a Lazair into a high performance ultralight is basterdizing the design and scope of what the lazair is all about. There are plenty of ultralights out there that are designed for that task. But who can argue with the human need for "more".
Power bee engines
Formerly known as Chrysler West Bend used in the early 80's as a
power unit for hanggliders, under the name of Soarmaster,was considered
by many as the "sore-master", it was notorious for lopping off toes and
feet, ooooch!! , it is still available as a karting engine it is
light and cheap ,all aluminum and puts out 10 hp in the hangglider power
mode, apparently this engine is also used to power army drone targets.(Note
: this engine is only mentioned for those who appreciate the challange
of lower power and substitute the original 6 hp)
engines have the licence to manufacture the Konig and MZ line of engines
specifically made for aviation. The radials Iam sure you will agree are
very neet looking. Cowled in, they would make a lazair look like a mini
Grumman Goose. They put there power out at lower rpm than convensional
2 strokes eliminating the need for re-drives, they are also known to be
exceptionally smooth running.
Cors-air offers a very light weight, high power engine equiped with re-drive and electric start (mmmmm nice,no pulling) and tuned exhaust, there has been some talk on the forum about this engine and it sounds like a Lazair junkie is going to take the plunge and install a set it will be exciting to get a flight report!
Solo 210 Now produced by Hirth, redesignated ,f36 .This engine has been around for a long time and has been proven by extensive use in aviation ,it is lighter than the 185 and puts out 14 hp.Options include redrive and electric start.
JPX 320 a modern version of the now defunct 425 pul comes with electric start and re-drive ,2 cylinder, weighs only 34 lbs with all the goodies.
2 Stroke International There
doesn't seem to be to much reliable information on this product, I know
of no one who uses it , I have heard of some negitive comments on support,but
you gotta be carefull on what you read on the internet. If you have any
first hand knowledge on this engine ,Id like to hear about it.
Engine weight & power tables