Online Community of Zenith Builders and Flyers
We finally decided on an engine: We ordered an AeroMomentum AM15!
The engine is offered as a standard version with 117 hp @ 5800 rpm or 132 hp @ 6500 rpm, very similar to the Viking 130, which we were also considering. AeroMomentum however advertises only the 117 hp @ 5800, as this is the rpm at which Rotax engines make max. power and because they believe that pilots do not want to have their engines screaming at 6500 rpm.
AeroMomentum also offers a beefed up version, which makes, as indicated on their website, 131 hp @ 5800 rpm and 147 hp @ 6500.
We decided to go with the standard, low profile, 117 / 132 hp version, as we didn't feel like spending another $3,500 for the additional 14 horses the beefed up version would provide. Another reason was, that the more powerful version contains custom made pistons and some other modifications. If we ever need spare parts, they will probably be easier to obtain for the stock version.
All engines are delivered with a dynamometer print out with the individual engine's torque and power curve. Pretty impressive and I believe unique in the industry!
I also like that AeroMomentum uses only brand new Suzuki engines, which have a very good track record in automotive applications and which are very popular, particularly in Asia and Europe.
Mark, the owner, said that he has been selling these engines for over 10 years to jet- and airboat customers. Most of them permanently run their engines full throttle.
The highest time engine accumulated over 4,000 hours without any issues, in a permanent full-throttle fishing net towing application. When the engine needed replacing, mainly due to poor maintenance, they even continued to use the original transmission. Very impressive, particularly considering that he is promoting his engines with a TBO of only 1,500 hrs.
I also like that the AM15 engine is only a little bit heavier than a 100 hp Rotax 912iS, but almost 40 pounds (!!) lighter than the Viking 130. AeroMomentum also advices against the installation of a header tank, what will save same additional weight, compared to the Viking, and also make the installation less complex.
Ultimately, the main reasons to choose AeroMomentum were the relatively low weight, good power, that they have been selling their engines for over 10 years to airboat customers, the attractive price and the very good impression I had of Mark, the owner. He always responded fast and detailed to my e-mails and was very patient and friendly on the phone. When I met him and Lilli, the lady who is handling the sales, at Airventure, my good impression was confirmed: Super friendly, humble and (we felt) honest.
They are still working on the firewall forward kit, we agreed to be Beta customers. We expect to receive the firewall forward kit, minus the cowling, in September. The engine is supposed to be delivered in October, the cowling towards the end of the year.
HomebuiltHelp has a nice interview with Mark on his YouTube channel: https://youtu.be/xWOj5_0DoQI
Their website: http://aeromomentum.com/
Glad you are blazing the trail Oliver. Those engines look very interesting. Will you run at 5800 rpm or 6500 rpm? Are you planning on an oil cooler?
I don't know yet about the rpm, but will stick with the standard installation, which I believe only uses a watercooler.
I'll be following as well! I spoke with them for about a 1/2 hr at Oshkosh this year. Funny, it *may* have been the same guy in the video, but I could swear he looked different.
When you say *they* are working on the FWF kit, is that AeroMomentum, or Zenith, or a collaboration?
Thanks for sharing, and I'm sure we're all looking forward to every minuscule tidbit you can toss our way.
I understand that it is a collaboration. Zenith will take care of the engine mount and the cowling, the rest will come from AeroMomentum. I am not sure, if this is still the plan, but was originally told that the cowling would be based on the O-200 cowling, minus the fat "chin" for the O-200 air intake. This is what the O-200 cowling looks like:
No too bad in my opinion...
I will keep you guys posted about our progress.
Aeromomentum is on my short list. I'm glad you will get the installation worked out for the rest of us.
Another guy with a Zenith lives close to AeroMomentum in Florida, he also ordered his engine a few weeks in advance of us. I hope that they will work out most of the installation with him...
I hope that we made the right decision, but feel so far good about it.
Any updates on your engine install?
Yes. Mark reached out to me me a few days ago. After changing suppliers they now received good engine mounts for both the the 701 and the 750. Not long until we get ours! :-)
I hope this engine works very well for you, but after looking at the web site, I couldn't help but notice they don't mind bashing their competitors with misinformation and lies.
For example, while their engine puts out 132 hp at 5,800 hp, they claim that the Viking 130 needs 6,600 rpm for the same power. That's not true. The Viking 130 puts out 130 hp at 5,450 hp. Further, stating "Viking 110/130 is a used engine removed from a totaled junk yard wreck" is purposely misleading about the engine itself.
These engines are come out of fender benders where the air bag has gone off, but the the engine is untouched. The engines are completely torn down and inspected, and then entirely overhauled (meeting specs of a new engine).
I stand corrected about more than a fender bender being needed to set off the airbag, but Viking also dyno's the engines and shows 130 hp at 5,540. I have not seen data from honda so unable to comment further.
If no header tank, does that mean a return line to a fuel tank, or is there a different solution ?