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Thread: Fuel valve replacement

  1. #1

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    Default Fuel valve replacement

    What seems to be the best fuel valve selector out there for replacing original in a 1957 PA 22/20 and that has option for both tank?

  2. #2
    Administrator Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fuel valve replacement

    If you put fuel valve in the search you will find a thread on the Dakota Cub valve.
    http://www.shortwingpipers.org/forum...-Problem/page2

    Trimmer using a Maule valve.
    http://www.shortwingpipers.org/forum...mer-fuel-valve

    and repairing what you have.
    http://www.shortwingpipers.org/forum...elector-Repair

  3. #3

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    Default Re: Fuel valve replacement

    Thank you for links

  4. #4

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    Default Re: Fuel valve replacement

    Both doesn't equal even gas flow in the short wing fleet. Lots of reading here on that subject. I have a couple of the fuel valves Piper installed as original equipment in the late 1970 - 80 era that they also offered back than as the replacement valve for the factory stock valve in short wings that needs rebuilt every few years, a redesigned valve that uses a plastic valve core plug and different type position washer that doesn't have the position ident problem or hard turning problem the original valve suffered from. I don't have a use for them right now, happy to sell one if you need one.
    Last edited by SMO22; 11-06-2018 at 07:50 AM.

  5. #5
    deandayton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fuel valve replacement

    BTW, Univair has a PMAed replacement valve. It looks just like the Dakota valve, but it does NOT have a BOTH position.

    The thing I don't care for about the Dakota valve is that it cross connects both tanks in the off position. Not normally a problem, but I occasionally want to micromanage fuel usage (like running avgas in one tank and auto gas in the other).

    I installed a Dakota valve before I realized this. If I had known I would probably have used the Univair valve.

    Don't get me wrong, the Dakota valve is a nice piece of hardware. I guess it's a preference thing...

  6. #6

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    Default Re: Fuel valve replacement

    Just to update this thread, after months of pontificating I finally bit the bullet and replaced my original fuel selector valve. My colt has two tanks, years ago I upgraded the valve with the Jenson composite plug then after the plane sat dormant for a time the selector appeared frozen after removing the cap to inspect the plug I tried using the shaft handle to try and rotate the plug however the collar that the pin for the shaft goes through disintegrated before freeing the plug. I looked at the several options for replacement and decided on the Univair valve as it is "PMA" unlike the Dakota valve "STC" . At $440 it is the most expensive but whats it worth on a dark night over the mountains? The valve is a direct replacement but you need to swap out the fittings from your old valve before installation , I recommend checking the fit of your old shaft handle and pointer before you start as mine was a bit tight and needed a keyhole file to correct the fit. If your trying to install through the hole in your interior fabric ( some have used a inspection ring groument to create that access) you will find it impossible to reconnect the fuel lines, plan on cutting a bigger hole then repair the fabric after assuring no leaks. The detent system is far superior to the old valve, as you look at the front of the valve where the shaft is there is a collar that contains check balls that provide positive detents, it appears they may be lubricated from out side the valve body as general maintenance. I used fitting sealant on all connections and am very pleased with the smoothness of operation. As stated its pricey but I feel it is the best on the market.

  7. #7
    Wag-builder's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fuel valve replacement

    I have the Univair fuel selector valve installed in my 56, and have been very happy with it over the years. The operation is smooth and positive and I have no concernes flying at night switching tanks, so it was money well spent for the piece of mind.

  8. #8

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    Jan 2015
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    Monterey, VA
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    Default Re: Fuel valve replacement

    Whether you rebuild or replace the fuel valve, you may find as I did that the single 45 deg flares on many-times-dismantled hard-used 65 year-old OEM aluminum fuel lines do not wish to re-seat in either the original or replacement inverted flare elbows and male run tee fitted to the valve. I thought it was the grunge in the brass fittings, so I replaced all of them. Still leaked. "Must be the flares, then." To re-flare, I had to remove enough of the old tubing above the flares to get a smooth straight section to flare. Then I needed to insert inverted flare unions in all the tubing runs to make up the shortage. Here are the parts for the whole job with Parker part numbers:

    1 3/8 x 1/4 male run tee SAE 040424 #251IFHD-6-4
    2 3/8 x 1/4 90 elbow SAE 040420 #249IFHD-6-4
    12 3/8 x 5/8-18 flare nut SAE 040110 #41IF-6 (or #41IFF-6 "piloted nut for single flare tubing")
    4 3/8 x 5/8-18 union SAE 040101 #42IFHD-6

    I needed 12 nuts (2 x 4 unions + 4 valve fitting connects).

    I don't know which of the Parker flare nuts is correct for this application because, to the best of my knowledge, I used neither the Parker flare nuts nor the Parker union. Here is why:

    You can also buy versions of all of these items at an auto parts store which still stocks stuff for mid-20th century cars and trucks. I ordered the Parker male run tee and elbows from the internet before I discovered that I had to re-flare, and that my re-flared tubing runs were going to come up way short due to the compromised tubing I had to remove.

    I made several trips to several parts stores over the course of several weekends for flare nuts, aluminum tube, and unions. For aluminum tube, I purchased two (and later two more) 12" lengths of 3/8 aluminum brake line with double flared ends and cut each in two to make my extensions, one end of each pre-flared.

    I had lots of leak problems with the flare nuts from the parts bins; none with the ones from the brake lines, nor with the original OEM nuts which I cleaned up with wire brush. I am ashamed to reveal how long it took me to figure that last bit out. When I finally compared the parts bin flare nuts to the OEM flare nuts and the brake line flare nuts, I found that the leaking parts bin nuts had an unthreaded shank below the head whereas the OEM flare nuts and the brake line flare nuts were threaded all the way to the head (photo #1, brake line nut on left, parts bin nut on right).
    invertedFlareNuts.JPG
    I also found that the inverted unions were not symmetric with respect to the depth of the receiving flare in the union (photo #2). In the photo of the union, "1" means 1 thread of an OEM or brake line flare nut is showing when the nut w/o tube bottoms out in the fitting; "2" means two threads of exactly the same kind of nut show when it bottoms out. The "1" end of the union is deeper than the "2" end, and so on the "1" end a parts bin flare nut binds on the shank before it compress the flare onto the receiver in the fitting. So it leaks. A parts bin nut on the "2" end almost seals in that there is no obvious drip-drip leak, but when you come back the next day you find 100LL dye at the connection. The fuel evaporates faster than it weeps out, it appears. I got rid of all the unthreaded-shank flare nuts and used the 4 original OEM flare nuts plus the brake line flare nuts. I re-made these connections multiple times before I figured all of this out. At one point, I was worried that I was going to chase the OEM tubing into the headliner and the firewall.
    invertedFlareUnion.JPG
    Long story, long time, on a short job. Flew yesterday. No leaks. Nice smooth valve action on the Univair valve.

  9. #9

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    Feb 2019
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    Yerington, Nevada
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    Default Re: Fuel valve replacement

    For what its worth, I installed the Univair valve years ago and it leaked in both OFF positions and unfortunately made a huge mess once the junk original gascolator started to leak. Lost 15 gallons in the hangar before I noticed. I contacted Univair about the o-ring p/n’s so I could rebuild it and got the middle finger instead. Buy another $414 selector? No thanks!This was Univair's response: “Thanks for the email. The fuel valve is a non serviceable valve. Theinternal components are not sold separately, this is due to the JohnDenver crash as to a malfunctioning fuel valve caused the crash and thatcompany was shut down from the lawsuit after his crash. This is thereason we do not offer or service any of the internal parts nor do othercompanies that make a replacement valve there is to much liability onthe company if you put in the parts wrong and Univair is not a approvedrepair station to be able to repair them.”Ok, I received my new Dakota fuel selector today and included is the drawing with replacement o-ring part numbers and great instructions for assembling the valve. I love a company that supports its product. I also installed the Dakota gascolator and couldn’t be happier.

  10. #10
    Old3pacer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Fuel valve replacement

    Enjoyed reading your experience.
    I have often wondered why it was non-service-able.

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