My Zenith Zodiac N624RJ will not win any beauty prize but since I installed the Viking 130 engine and three bladed Whirlwind propeller it made it a fun and dependable airplane.
N624RJ started life with an air cooled corvair engine which required continous maintenance.
It required a carburetor heat system and a mixture control. The customer support for this engine was slim to none.
My wife suggested that I needed an engine as dependable as the one in her Honda Civic. It was an easy sell when I showed her the Viking 130 which uses the new technology engine from the Honda Fit car. I wasn’t fully convinced because it went against my up bringing that you don’t put a geared and liquid cooled engine in an airplane. An A&P with an AI buddy of mine put a Viking in his amphibian aircraft with good results.
Installation of the Viking 130 was easier than the removal of the air cooled engine because of fewer parts and fewer firewall penetations.
I now have over 111 flight hours on the Viking engine system which exceeds all my expectations. Making an airplane out of my CH-601 Zodiac. I’m satisfied with it’s performance 138 true and burning a little over 5 gallons per hour turning 5050 rpm.
I did install two servos to give me a Dynon autopilot, which killed my pigeon pilot skills.
Living in Missouri I really like the way the Viking (Honda) engine starts no matter the outside temperature.
Stop by Gimlin (18MO) hangar #9 for share my experience with the Viking/Zodiac/Dynon/Whirlwind