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Oil Cooler mounting

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  • Oil Cooler mounting

    What are people doing for mounting their oil coolers? I have seen several people mount them to the firewall, but I'd like to use the oil cooler mount that Van's sells to go with their baffle kit. I think It will work, and will clear the engine mount, but I'm not sure, and I don't have the engine hung yet to mock it up. Has anyone used the Van's style mount successfully? Would you do it that way again?

  • #2
    There's THIS mount from Vans that came with my Firewall Forward kit - works well.
    Nev Bailey
    Christchurch, NZ - Safety & Maintenance Notes
    YouTube - Build and flying channel
    Builders Log - We build planes


    • #3
      I am using the Van’s mounting kit on my Patrol build. Fits very nicely and comes with the required hoses. This mimics the way the cooler is mounted in a production Citabria with an appropriate reinforcing plate.


      • #4
        I have no real world data to provide for the Patrol. I am using Vans Baffle Kit and their Baffle mounted oil cooler kit that mounts a cooler behind cylinder #4 and a Aero Classics 7 row drawn cup oil cooler as the Vans Baffle Mount Kit fits up to that cooler. Its a rather small oil cooler.

        I am today working on baffling, so its fresh infor

        So yes, I let the baffle product drive my oil cooler decision. There are some ways to improve oil cooling I will try....this is experimental. The traditional Lycoming vernatherm Oil Cooler byopass valve flows about 70% of the oil through the cooler. I will remove mine and install a Lycoming the older option of the Spring and plunger to restore 100% flow through the cooler due to its size.

        The Baffle mount option places the weight of the cooler on the baffle, and has discussion about cracks in the baffle. I installed extra support on the Cyl #4 aft baffle to fight the cracking. It seems very very sturdy now.

        So, I like the placement, I like the fit, but it is untested.

        These are the best photos I could find.

        Screenshot 2024-05-15 at 7.59.18 AM.png Screenshot 2024-05-15 at 7.58.39 AM.png
        Brooks Cone
        Southeast Michigan
        Patrol #303, Kit build


        • #5
          Thanks Brooks. For what it’s worth, I’ve been doing A&P work on certified planes down here in Georgia for 20+ years now, and the only times I’ve seen anyone have any real problems with oil temp, even in our summer heat, have been because of an obstruction of the oil cooler or some internal problem with the engine. Feel free to do away with your vernatherm if you’d like, but I wouldn’t think it necessary, especially in Michigan. Also, the issues with baffle mounted oil coolers cracking baffles are definitely not an issue unique to Vans. Certified birds with baffle mounted coolers eventually develop cracks too, so your extra reinforcement was probably a wise choice.