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Thread: Jabiru subaru

  1. #1

    Jabiru subaru

    Looking into buying a zenith but not familiar with these engines, jabiru and subaru. What do you think of these engines?

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Clarklake, MI
    Quote Originally Posted by kirk bellard View Post
    Looking into buying a zenith but not familiar with these engines, jabiru and subaru. What do you think of these engines?
    I think the Jabiru was designed to be a light plane engine and the Subaru was designed for a car. Have seen somewhat successful converted car engines but each one should be evaluated on it's own merit.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Both popular in some models of the Zenith line. Both can be reliable, both can have problems.
    Like all things aircraft, find someone who knows model well and can give you more advice then OWT.


  4. #4

    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    You'll find people who are true believers in both of those engines and others who hate them. Jabiru has a reputation for having cooling issues, Subaru reliability issues. I read recently that Jabiru has come out with a new engine. I've not heard anything new about Subaru conversions recently. You'll find opinions all over over the place on the internet but finding someone with first hand experience will be difficult. Take everything the airplane seller says with a grain of salt and fly before you buy. If your thinking of buying a plane with one of these engines that is not currently in flying condition, be a pessimist, assume the engine is not going to work and make your offer accordingly. The good thing about being a pessimist is your either proven right or pleasantly surprised.

  5. #5
    overtime's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Peace River, Alberta

    Real World Subaru

    I have some experience with the 1.8L Subaru. It was purchased as a core from a wrecker and rebuilt at a local engine shop. I added a Joe Souza gear drive, some Bing carburetors, a Nippon-Denso alternator and a Crane Cams electronic ignition. The engine spins a 72" Warp Drive prop and is mounted in a modified J6 Karatoo that we built over a 15 year span from 1994 to 2009. The aircraft-engine combination now has over 500 hours of service and has taken me on many local 1 hour flights in addition to a couple of flights across the 3 Prairie Provinces. Perhaps the most serious issue to resolve has been cooling. From the outset, an oil cooler was part of the package. I have settled on Royal Purple Max-Cycle 20-50 oil though I'm sure there are other oils that will work but this one seems to keep consistent and manageable temperatures. I would be happy to answer any questions anyone might have regarding this engine.

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