One of my favorite mods…an old Aeronca had a modified old metal He-Man lunchbox which formed some sort of muffler…
The plane itself is a beauty too:
I’m both astonished and confused – I still had to know more! I found some more images of the airplane, including some in motion/flight, taken at the same Summer 2012 event ‘A Sentimental Journey’ in Pennsylvania:
The aircraft’s N-number N919Z appears to go by Warmkessel Korn’s Caper (The Yellow Rat) – this is the same aircraft discussed by Thomas Huf on pages 77-94 in Tales of Timeless Wings! (Sadly, upon further research it is recorded that Thomas and his wife Elaine passed away the year after the A Sentimental Journey images above were taken, their Cessna T-50 having crashed during a thunderstorm.) The plane – and its 140hp Lycoming 0-290 Series engine – has a new owner and I hope to see it someday in the field because I’m really curious about that lunchbox muffler, is it still there? Is it still working? How well does it work?
But yes it is totally possible to retrofit a lunchbox onto the engine of a flying machine!
Adafruit has had paid day off for voting for our team for years, if you need help getting that going for your organization, let us know – we can share how and why we did this as well as the good results. Here are some resources for voting by mail, voting in person, and some NY resources for our NY based teams as well. If there are additional resources to add, please let us know – adafruit.com/vote
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Get the only spam-free daily newsletter about wearables, running a "maker business", electronic tips and more! Subscribe at AdafruitDaily.com !
It looks like the Ha-Man lunchbox is being used as a heat muff. Basically a shroud that goes around the muffler or other part of the exhaust to heat fresh air for the cabin or the carburetor. The give-away is the orange “scat” duct. That is taking warm air out of the box for other parts of the airecraft to use.
In this case it wouldn’t make much sense to heat the cockpit, so I am guessing this is a carb heat set-up. Carburetor heat is needed because the venturi effect in the carb throttle body causes the air temperature to drop. If the air is humid enough this temperature drop can cause ice to form in the throttle body. Carb icing is not as nice as the cake kind. It is not tasty and can kill you. It can block off the carb, preventing the engine from developing the necessary power to keep the aircraft in the air and it can freeze the throttle partway open, making it impossible to add or remove power.
Thanks John! That’s a great read – totally makes sense. (I’m no motorhead.)