Online Community of Zenith Builders and Flyers
So, I’m sure this is a bit out there, but anyone fit an air conditioning system onto a Viking powered aircraft? I’ll be flying out of Phoenix, AZ, and was pondering the possibility of running an A/C system for those hot summer days before getting to altitude. Something very simple on/off, and not used during critical flight phase like takeoff and landing. Maybe components from a Honda car, or something the classic car guys add to their hot rods? Just at the spitballing stage.
You might find this interesting reading:
That was an interesting read. Funny how discussion on the internet can bring out the worst in people though, even on such a non-controversial topic.
What does Viking have to say? I am also curious. Surely not the first time this question has come up.
Jan doesn't monitor this forum closely, so even if he or Alissa sees it, Keith may have to wait a while for an answer. They're happy to answer questions mind you. They just don't religiously check all the threads here. Keith would be better off just sending Viking an email and asking the question that way. If you do that, Keith, it would be nice if you posted their answer here so others can benefit from it.
I’d like to be able to take off from metro Phoenix mid morning when it’s 100 degrees and fly to the cooler air up north for the day. Then come back and land in Phoenix in the early evening when it’s pushing 115. I’m thinking an engine driven compressor on a small under dash hot rod unit would be a good bet for making the first and last hour of that mission bearable. I just don’t want to hurt takeoff power as the DA in northern AZ in the summer is around 10,000’, and I don’t want to reduce the reliability of the engine overall. I have plenty of time to ponder and research as so far I only have a tail, a pile of flap/slat parts that don’t seem to match the plans, and an engine.
This has always been a fascinating subject for me. I have a Jab 3300 and it has a fitting in the back that accepts a certified air pump! I was looking around the grounds at EAA and I saw those John Deer tractors on display and one very small tractor with an enclosed cabin actually had an air conditioner in it! I looked at the compressor and it could fit in the palm of my hand. If there was a way to machine a clutch fitting to that compressor you would have a very cheap, light weight air conditioning system for the plane! For my 750 it's not worth it because I can take the doors off and fly it that way. But for the 650 it would be quite a lot of fun to experiment with that! Here in Wisconsin it would not be worth the expense or weight but in Arizona, it would be a fun and useful experiment! That compressor was actually smaller than the air pump I took off my engine when i got rid of my antique gauges.
Yes, I monitor this about once a week - so many things to monitor these days! If you do Facebook though, we have a dedicated page for "Viking Engine Owners & Prospects" and because we can easily monitor that mobile you can get answers pretty immediate as well as input from other customers.
You can do air conditioning if you like, via a compressor - however, you are just adding a failure point.
The 130/150 we can't do because the pad is already taken - on the turbo engine we can, but if the clutch in the compressor fails you could wipe the belt out..no good.
Personally, we have two window vents in each door and even on the hottest of days here in Florida it is comfortable and we will sometimes only use one. None of our customers that I know of have ever done this, always seems to me people find it unnecessary.