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As the title states, I find myself constantly perusing engine options for my build (701). On paper, the simonini looks amazing. Outside of being a 2 stroke, and i understand some people are leery of them. This thing can be bought new for 7900$ usd and has US distributors. It weights significantly less than a rotax 912uls and makes 10hp more. Its got a TBO of 1000hrs, dual ignitions. and mounts in a 582 mount which Zenair/zenith makes already. It seems like a no brainer. I am having trouble finding any information on them at all and am just wondering if there is something I am missing?
Personally I have had good luck in 2 strokes and have yet to develop any phobias or mistrust of them.
I am yet to hang an engine on my build and was more less planning on the standard 912uls but at half 1/3 the price and weight savings am having a hard time wrapping my head around the Simonini.
Michael its your airplane so if you want to, go for it. I too struggled early in my 701 build with the cost of my desired Rotax engine. The dollar-euro exchange rate at the time was not in my favor to say the least. I did a lot of research seeking an alternative, but in the end, sucked it up and paid for a new 912UL. Four years of flying later I am thankful I made that decision because I gradually came to realize when I bought that engine I also bought access to:
1. A global community of experienced users to reach out to for advice through the Rotax owner website, where certified Rotax technicians also participate and multiple instructional videos are accessible
2. A well established, highly trained dealer and parts network, including time set aside each business day where you can call and ask questions. The Rotec folks in Canada (where my engine came from) are awesome.
3. Detailed and regularly updated Operators, Maintenance, and Parts manuals
4. A Zenith Firewall Forward kit designed specifically for my 701 The cowling was an huge time saver. And there’s an instructional video out there that shows you step by step how to hang the engine on a 701.
5. The boost in resale value of a 701 with a Rotax 912 vs.almost any other engine
6. Access to, and personal notifications via email, to Alert and Service Bulletins, Service Instructions, etc.
7. The peace of mind that thousands of these engines are flying every day and have been for decades. I did a lot of research on the NTSB website and a Rotax 912 engine failure for unknown reasons was rarely found.
And there’s more but I’ll stop. When my granddaughter climbs in the airplane with me I have no doubt that Rotax 912 will bring us up and back, and I’m reminded that there are some things where the upfront cost is well worth it.
sent you a friend request. i have an engine offer for you.
ph (707) 478-7135
Buy a rotax 912 uls you won't be sorry. Its a better airplane with 100hp. I tried a 80 hp
Jerry if you still have it sell it to Michael! It’s a very good engine for the 701 and your post triggered another thought about the 701 and engines- the original design was around a 53 hp Rotax two stroke, then the 80hp 912 made it an even better STOL airplane (single pilot, I can launch in just under 175’ on grass on a cool day with my 80hp) and with the 100hp 912 it’s an all-season STOL beast. I guess my point is anything beyond 100hp isn’t really going to give you any significant additional performance, even on a hot Summer afternoon.
Thanks for the reply. I flew the 701 with a Jabiru 80 hp. The Jabiru is so smooth running vs Rotax. I live at aprox 4900 msl. and I live in New Mexico. Density altitude is for real here. The 100 hp makes a big difference. I agree with you totally, that more than 100 hp would be a waste. I do know of people with the Honda 110 from Viking and they are awesome. Jan finally got the gearbox issues figured out.
Ah so you had the Jab 80hp, yes that direct-drive engine is not a good match for the 701 esp. at the high DAs you fly in. I bet your first full power hold-the-brakes and launch with your 100hp Rotax was a shocker!