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Thread: Relay Switch attached on the Battery Box

  1. #1
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    Relay Switch attached on the Battery Box

    I have a 1976 Beech C-23 Sundowner (which I have owned for 21 years)
    and recently experienced an electrical short from this relay which is
    connected to the battery box. It is a 200 amp, 12V DC unit and I just
    checked with RAPID and they want $403.70 for a replacement!!!Does
    anyone know if there is another "replacement" unit? The problem
    developed when I recharged the battery and put it back in the plane. I
    flipped the switches and NOTHING HAPPENED. I got out, removed the
    bulkhead and there was smoke starting to develop from the cables that
    were getting VERY hot. A small wire from the relay actually got so hot
    that it burnt the insulation off of it.
    Another couple of items I am looking for are the wingtips and
    stabilator tips replacements.
    Any help is definitely appreciated. I live in San Antonio.
    Safe and Happy Flying.
    Dave



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  2. #2

    Relay Switch attached on the Battery Box

    >>I [snip] recently experienced an electrical short from this relay which is connected to the battery box. It is a 200 amp, 12V DC unit and I just checked with RAPID and they want $403.70 for a replacement!!!<<

    That is the Master Solenoid, which is activated by the switch on the panel. Pretty much standard stuff on all GA planes with a battery. While I don't know of an FAA PMA replacement that is approved for the Sundowner, there are Cessna and Piper relays that should work fine, and even automotive and golf cart options that your FSDO could approve.

    NAPA has the Echlin line of solenoids, many other brands also have similar selections.

    The key is that you want a CONTINUOUS duty solenoid, not an INTERMITTENT (starter) solenoid. The difference is in the spring tension inside the solenoid and the resistance of the internal coil to activate it. A continuous duty solenoid has a weaker spring and a higher resistance in the coil. About 16 ohms is typical of the Cessna style continuous solenoids. An intermittent solenoid has a strong spring (to pull the contacts apart without flash welding when the Starter is running) and the resultant lower resistance in the coil (needs a higher current and stronger magnet to pull against the strong spring). About 2 ohms resistance in an intermittent solenoid.

    Incorrectly substituting will cause the solenoid to fail in flight after it heats up.

    You sure you didn't put the battery in BACKWARDS and fry something? I don't recall ever hearing of a situation where a solenoid failed after charging the battery.

    In any case, there are a couple other minor concerns over exactly HOW the solenoid coil is wired. Some have 3 posts (2 big ones for the battery and 1 small one for the signal wire) and some have 4 posts (2 big ones for the battery and 2 little ones that are both ends of the coil). There are internally grounded coils (3 post style) and internally powered coils (3 post style that attach one end of the coil to the Batt terminal inside), so you need to inspect your wiring and the current solenoid to get the correct design.

    The standard system is to have the coil powered by the battery (either internally connected on a 3 post style, or with an external jumper on the 4 post style) and have the Master switch on the panel GROUND the signal post to complete the coil circuit and bring the solenoid into the closed position.

    >Another couple of items I am looking for are the wingtips and
    >stabilator tips replacements.

    AeroGlass in Griffin GA (on the Spalding County Airport next door to Atlanta Air Salvage) makes PMA stab tips, tail cones and dorsal fins.

    http://www.merchantcircle.com/busine...s.770-227-6106

    Globe Fiberglass in Lakeland FL has some very nice wing tips for the Musketeer line, in addition to stab tips, dorsal fins, tail cones, etc..

    http://www.globefiberglass.com/musketeer.htm

    --Bob Steward A&P IA
    Birmingham, AL


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  3. #3

    Relay Switch attached on the Battery Box

    Dave:

    Check with Aircraft Spruce for Master Relay P/N 111-226 $17.90

    Don
    C-GNIO
    ----- Original Message -----
    From: iflyaerosport
    To: musketeermail@yahoogroups.com
    Sent: Thursday, July 19, 2007 3:56 PM
    Subject: [musketeermail] Relay Switch attached on the Battery Box


    I have a 1976 Beech C-23 Sundowner (which I have owned for 21 years)
    and recently experienced an electrical short from this relay which is
    connected to the battery box. It is a 200 amp, 12V DC unit and I just
    checked with RAPID and they want $403.70 for a replacement!!!Does
    anyone know if there is another "replacement" unit? The problem
    developed when I recharged the battery and put it back in the plane. I
    flipped the switches and NOTHING HAPPENED. I got out, removed the
    bulkhead and there was smoke starting to develop from the cables that
    were getting VERY hot. A small wire from the relay actually got so hot
    that it burnt the insulation off of it.
    Another couple of items I am looking for are the wingtips and
    stabilator tips replacements.
    Any help is definitely appreciated. I live in San Antonio.
    Safe and Happy Flying.
    Dave





    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



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