observations of a 20 year Maule owner

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Mark - AK
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observations of a 20 year Maule owner

Post by Mark - AK »

I just got my Maule (1990 M-7235) out of annual. I'm curious as to what insights other long time owners may have about this fine aircraft. I fly mostly floats in summer and skis in winter and almost all is off airport except home base.
Mark - AK

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andy
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Re: observations of a 20 year Maule owner

Post by andy »

I've owned my 1986 MX-7-180 for 22 years. Maule Flight rebuilt the entire airplane except for the instrument panel and engine in 2010. I can't think of another airplane that is as versatile and fun to fly. I think the ideal Maule is the M-7-260. The larger engine and universal wing would improve takeoff and climb out of short, back-country mountain airstrips, although gross weight would increase, useful load would decrease and balance wouldn't be quite as good as my MX-7-180 due to the heavier nose. It would also be a much better performing seaplane on amphibs. I like the fuel injected IO-540 engine vs. the carbureted engine. Better fuel distribution among the cylinders gives better performance at high density altitude and there's no carburetor ice to worry about. I'm partial to oleo struts due to lighter weight and shock absorption on rough strips. There's a long list of options that I would choose for my ideal Maule - most of which I already have on my MX-7-180 - except that I would get the extended ABI Heavy Duty main gear legs instead of the standard size ones that I have.

The only things about the Maule that I would change are: stick instead of yoke, cowl flaps, a better exhaust system (that doesn't crack as much) and rear shoulder belts with manual adjustments rather than inertial reels. I like the feel and response of a stick better than a yoke. Cowl flaps would improve CHT and oil cooling in summer and raise the oil heat and cabin heat in winter. A better exhaust system, like Atlee Dodge's, would have thicker pipe walls and not crack as much at the welds. I'm in the process of swapping out the rear seat inertial shoulder belt reels for manually adjusted belts. I don't like the exposed inertial reels being so close to rear seat passengers' heads.
Andy
1986 MX7-180

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Re: observations of a 20 year Maule owner

Post by montana maule »

Skis are very hard on the main gear. Be sure to have NAS bolts in the top of the oleo strut attach bracket. I have NAS bolts in all the gear attach points. Check at least at every annual. I have had bent bolts after one season of ski flying. I have also had an axel break on stock gear. I now have the heavy duty gear.

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