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Thread: Pacer with 0290-D2

  1. #1

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    Sep 2019
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    Default Pacer with 0290-D2

    Hey all, looking to buy a vintage taildragger. Found a nice low time Pacer with an 0290-D2 engine on it. Been doing some research and it appears that it's no longer being supported, parts are hard to find and if you do they're pricey. Just wanted to get some thoughts on everybody's experience with these engines. Seems like they've been "hard to find" for quite some time, but I've seen a LOT of planes still flying with these engines. Are we talking hard to find like a Franklin? Looking for some advise before either pulling the trigger on the bird or looking elsewhere. Even if I fly 100 hours a year, I would still have a good 7 years of flying before reaching 1200 hrs on the engine. TIA!

  2. #2
    gliderman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacer with 0290-D2

    I fly behind a D2 at 3000 ASL I have no problems with it. however one thing to make sure is that the exhaust valve mod has been done. the original had solid core vales and they like to break.That can get expensive
    parts are more pricey but can be found

    hope this helps
    Shane-o

  3. #3
    smcnutt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacer with 0290-D2

    Ours has a 0290-D2 and we've been flying it for over 10 years. We've not had any engine specific problems in all that time. It was even sitting without hardly running for another 10 years before we bought it -another "oh no" when buying. Even with that strike against it, we've only averaged less than 70 hours a year -which is another strike since engines need to be run. We're approaching 1600 hours and finally looking for a replacement engine. Mostly because we are starting to see too much oil usage but it's still strong and not making metal.

    We will probably replace it with a mid-time 160hp just because it makes sense if you are going to be spending the money to upgrade the HP. That will add some new capabilities to the aircraft but we've certainly been happy with the 135hp and wouldn't get rid of it just because it is a 0290-D2. However, we're in Indiana and not flying in the mountains and landing on gravel bars.

    If 135hp fits your mission I would certainly not pass it up just because of possible parts issues that you may never need in the next 10 years. You can never know just how long an engine will last. When/if this one wears out with a major component failure, chances are you will be looking for a new engine anyway. That certainly could be part of the price negotiations when buying the airplane but not something that would make me walk away.

    My $.02
    “Common sense is in spite of, not the result of, education.”
    ― Victor Hugo

  4. #4
    Administrator Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacer with 0290-D2

    Lotsof threads here on this subject. Google "O-290 site:shortwingpipers.org"

    This is a good read as well.
    https://www.shortwingpipers.org/foru...ase-Inspection

  5. #5

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    Default Re: Pacer with 0290-D2

    Great info, thank you all so much!

  6. #6
    ClippedWing's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacer with 0290-D2

    Like anything, there is probably a surcharge for the o320. But if you find the airplane you like, there is nothing wrong with the o290 especially the D2. Mine purrs and with two of us, she still climbs out at 1000 fpm at 85 ias! Only 590 hours on mine and after climbing out of Big Bear yesterday, alone, 2/3 fuel no bags, 7800 DA I found myself wishing she had the 160 hp and that perhaps I was closer to TBO. But barring anything major, I will fly this one out and make her work because she is great for 80+% of my flying. Besides, remember the old saying...if you have to ask how much it costs, you can’t afford it!

    Now if an -0540 Bearhawk fell in my lap, that might change things!

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