From: Steve Roth (
When I used the Adel motor and used flaps, the motor would "blip" every fewseconds and the gear motor light would illuminate for a brief instant. What would cause that?

That is a common thing, not related to the type of motor. The gear is probably falling off the microswitch, due to a too-tight crankdown cable or an internal hydraulic leak in the power pack. What is happening, the microswitch is calling for the motor to run, which it does, it runs for an instant and shuts off nomally. Didn't Steve have to crank his gear down recently? He may not have cranked it back competely afterward. I would suggest he have a knowlegable Swift mechanic run the gear on jacks and check all the adjustments. If it cranks down ok, he may want to back off slightly on the tension of the pull down cable. If the power pack is leaking internally, Joe Ranson is the only person I know who is good at lapping the brass plates in there. -- Jim

It does not do it (the gear motor light blip occasionally) until I put the flaps down -- then it starts. -- Steve

Oh, well thats different. I thought it happened in cruise flight. If it happens AFTER you put the flaps down, the selector in the power pack is leaking slightly internally, allowing the flaps to retract enough to activate the micro switch. I think I would just live with that. -- Jim

From: "T.Fred Lipscomb" <>
Subject: HYD Motor Pump
I have had the Hyd. Pump Circuit/Breaker pop on me three different times when selecting the gear, twice in the down position, and once when selecting up position. Something is overheating this C/B and causing it to pop. ( RSO ) Rookie Swift Operator. HELP !! --- T. Fred Lipscomb 2412B

Is that the little red button? Possibly it at 50 years of age is tired and needs replacement. I used to work for NWA and could take various C/B switches in to work and have the electicians check them out. Many times a so-called 30 amp C/B would pop at 20 amps, but more often, it took 100 amps! Has any work been done on the system recently? The brushes in the hyd. motor may be nearing the end of their useful life. As I recall, N2412B had a 20 hp Mercury Outboard starter motor for a hyd motor. Please write again and let me know more detail, like is it the C/B switch or the red button. -- Jim

You are right, 2412B does have a 20 hp Mercury Outboard starter motor for a hyd. motor. It is the actual C/B that is poping not the red gear switch, it works fine. Pushed C/B in and gear retracted. Is there an easy way to check the brushes in the hyd. motor? Thanks: T. Fred

It could be several things, but I would first suspect the motor. The brushes are easy to check . If memory serves, the top of the motor comes off and you can eyeball the brushes. The relay might be bad also, the relay is inexpensive, get an "intermittent" one if you think it might need replacing. So it's the c/b switch that pops? I would still suspect it may be opening up at low amperage, the gear c/b switch is only a 5 amp. These are getting a little harder to find, but I think they have them at Athens and a major electrical outlet might still stock them - the c/b's and micro switches were used in about a gazillion things back in the '40's and '50's. You say the red gear switch. That still leaves me a little confused. There is a red button on the rt. side of the panel. That is a hyd. circuit breaker. Then there is the landing gear 5 amp c/b switch. (like a black household on/off switch; radio - landing gear - flaps - gen - inst lights - pos lights, they look alike, but have different amp ratings) The red button is a 30 amp c/b. Does 12B still have the original type c/b's? -- Jim

Took the Hyd. Motor off today, and you were right. Actually the brushes themselves were ok, but there was so much carbon built up that I don't see how any electricity was conducted. Cleaned armature, brushes, etc., with emory cloth and gas, and put grease on each end of shaft. Put it back together, reinstalled it, and flaps work great. T. Fred

From: Fred Lipscomb <>
Subj: Hyd. Motor Pump
Monty !
I am back . Last time we talked, was about my Hyd. Motor Pump C/B popping during gear retract and extension. Checked Hyd. Motor pump Brushes, they are ok. Up on jacks, Motor pump pulling 81amps during retract, and 41amps during flap actuation. Had Motor Pump checked today, and they said motor looked new to them and wanted to know if I would sell it. The only thing I can come up with is maybe in the Hyd pump itself there must be A pressure relief valve that is sticking, and that is what is causing this motor to Work so hard. Any suggestions? Thanks: T. Fred Lipscomb (2412B)

81 amps is too much. 40 amps on retraction, and half that on extension are more like it. Does your gear retract/extend real quickly? I suspect it may be operating at way to high a pressure. Consult the Cummins Hydraulic manual. The pressure should be 425 PSI. After taking the unit loose on the firewall, there is an adjustment screw with a check nut on it on the back. The nut and screw are usually flush, if the screw is turned way in, that's your first clue the pressure will be too high. The little hydraulic pump will put out 2000 PSI if the adjusting screw is turned all the way in. Anything over 600 lbs runs a risk of shearing the woodruff keys in the gear actuators. Do you have all the books pertaining to the Swift? You especially need the Cummins Hydraulic Manual. -- Jim

Subject: Re: Hyd. Motor Pump
I nmy previous reply I more-or-less assumed whoever looked at your motor eliminated the possibility of an electrical fault. Is that correct? If the motor has a problem, like the armature dragging on the fields, or a bad bearing, it will also draw high amperage. Did you manage to check the system pressure? -- Jim

Subject: Gear Trouble
From: Bob Runge <>
How's it going? Flew the Swift today and it broke. Landing gear comes part way up and then pops the 30 amp breaker (round one). Then when I reset the breaker, the gear finishes its short distance remaining upward with a thud. The thud almost sounds like it got hung up on something and is finally going by the obstacle, but it might be that the gear is so close to being home, it finishes the trip very fast with a thud. The gear goes down OK and the flaps work great. Today was a hot day and I was going around the pattern doing continuous takeoffs and landings. When I stopped to check out the wheel wells for obstructions (15 - 20 minutes) the next takeoff gear up was OK, but then the one right after that popped the breaker again.

I can give you some general hints, but I don't know enough about your airplane to pinpoint anything. What kind of gear motor do you have? If it's the stock gear motor what you experienced is not all that unusual. The first thing you need to do is put the airplane up on jacks and run the gear. Check out that "thud". To do thorough grease job on a Swift landing gear system, the linkage should be uncotterkeyed and dismantled every 100 hours. That's the only way you can get grease on the bushings. Check for wear and mis-adjustment per AD 47-06-01 and 51-11-04. I have found if the 30 Amp. c/b button pops, many times the gear relay has arced and is causing excess current draw. Also check the brushes in the gear motor. Years ago, with a stock gear motor, I found if I exceeded 80 mph on climb before the gear was up it would pop the c/b every time. Doing touch and goes, on about the 3rd takeoff it would pop at 70 mph. -- Jim

(Editor's note: A general advisory for what it is worth... You can save wear and tear on the gear motor when doing multiple touch and gos if you just leave the landing gear down. To keep up with procedure, however, simulate the retraction and extension actions with a verbal callout and/or some other kind of deliberate action.)

Thanks for the helpful hints. I do have the original gear motor. I plan on checking the brushes. Where would I find the gear relay? -- Bob Runge

The relay is on the firewall a few inches from the gear motor. Follow the wire from the motor. There are several types, the earliest is in an aluminum "box", the next style was a GE (I think) plastic cased unit with several terminal studs, and most Swifts have a modern intermittent relay such as listed in Aircraft Spruce, p/n 22735 ($13.95) If you have either of the original 53 year old types I suggest you replace it.

The brushes for the gear motor are obtainable from any major electric motor supply house, or Swift Parts may have them. Usually, they must be removed and cleaned at least once a year. The motor may require disassembly and cleaning if it hasn't been done for a while. The hydraulic reservoir should not be overfilled, the oil will get up in the motor and on the brushes and armature and cause problems. When Merlyn Products comes out with their new STC'ed gear motor, your best move would be to get one! -- Jim

I have talked with a guy who used to own a Swift and he put in a Honda starter motor. He said that the motor doubled the pressure and that the gear came up in about 4 seconds at any speed, above or below 90. This would obviously require an FAA field approval???? (8 more months!!) -- Bob Runge

No it won't double the pressure! The pressure should be 425 psi no matter what motor is turning the pump. Any pressure above 500-600 lbs. runs the risk of shearing the woodruff keys in the gear actuators. A 4 second gear is probably running in that range. The advantage to a Honda motorcycle starter motor is reliability and a little more power than the stock unit. I have gotten them field approved in years gone by, but today I think you can forget about that! Write Suzanne Evans at Merlyn Products and encourage them to get their new STC'ed gear motor on the market! -- Jim

(Editor's note: Thanks Jim... It's nice to keep Suzanne Evans aware that we haven't forgotten about that new gear motor STC Merlyn is working on!!!)

Subject: Re: Hydraulic Motor Brushes
From: Bob Runge <>
I have never dealt with anything as miserable as the screws for the hydraulic motor brushes. I'm assuming that these are the 4 large phillips flatheads that surround the center of the motor. I could not get any of them to budge. It is almost like they are cast into the case for decoration. I even ran a knife around the edge thinking that paint might be holding them tight. No go. Are they left had thread? I also tried turning them the other way.

Boy am I puzzled! I thought you had a stock motor. The stock Swift hydraulic motor has two large phenolic buttons that screw out and the brushes are then easily pulled out. It sounds to me like you are trying to remove the field coil screws of some kind of starter motor. That is not a Swift motor! Assuming it's a starter motor of some sort, the motor should be on a bench and one end removed. The brushes should then be visible. I suggest taking it to an electric motor shop.  --  Jim

From: Bob Runge <>
To say that I'm a little red in the face with embarrassment would be an understatement. Not having a picture of the original Swift motor, I naturally assumed I had the original. Nothing in the logs indicates otherwise. (so much for legalities)

This motor is mounted to the reservoir via a plate. It is mounted to the plate via a couple of threaded rods that go down the side of the motor opposite each other, through a cap (on top of the motor) that has casted threaded holes on its sides and down through the same type of casted, threaded holes on a cap on the bottom, then going into the mounting plate. Guess I hope Merlyn hurries with their new STC motor. -- Bob Runge

Just from your description, I would guess it's a Honda Motorcycle starter adapted to the Swift. It's probably a lot better than an original motor! Unfortunately, it's not exactly legal either. Forget getting a field approval in 1999, unless your FSDO is a lot easier going than most, which I gather they are not. The good news is, the Honda starters only need the brushes cleaned about every 25 years! -- Jim

PS - I had one field approved in the '70's and I proved the current draw will not over draw the wiring, so don't worry, be happy. -- Jim

Subject: Hydraulic Pump Motor
From: Phil Howell <>
Hi Jim: I recently purchased N3313K. This is a 210 Swift with a 24 volt system, well mostly that is. In checking the hydraulic pump motor I noticed it is an ADEL rated at 12 volts and 35 amps. It is working fine and looks almost new. Question: Is this standard practice when switching to a 24 volt system? I know there is a 24 to 12 volt reducing unit in the a/c, but I believe it is only for less power hungry items. What is the expected life of a 12 volt motor on a diet of 24 volts? As a new Swift owner, I really appreciate your advice and technical support. Many thanks, Phil Howell

To answer your question, (kind of) I'm not sure what the life of that little motor on 24V would be. That Adel motor is not very long lived under any circumstance, so I wouldn't expect it to last real long on 24V. Maybe it will last longer on 24V! I have no experience running the Adel motor on 24V.If you have any problems with the motor, write me back, I may be able to help. -- Jim

Subj: Hydraulic pump motor
From: Lew Fisher <>
Is there a pump motor that would make the landing gear go up faster? I've seen references to a Montague motor, a Pesco hydraulic pump, and another motor the name of which I can't remember right now. Is it a matter of increasing the hydraulic pressure? What should a nominal time be for the gear to come up? I've wondered about this for the 46 years I've owned my Swift but now that my daughter is flying the airplane, I thought it was time to ask. Lew Fisher

The motor should raise the gear in 6 or 7 seconds. A faster gear is a function of hydraulic pressure. Raising the pressure above the book figure of 425 -450 psi is not a good idea, due to the possibility of shearing the Woodruff keys in the gear actuators. The stock little motor will "lug down" in rpm, and not allow full hydraulic pressure. I believe Merlyn has their new STC'ed motor available now, which I believe would be a worthwhile investment. The stock motor is too small and has several other design deficiencies. It has an inadequate seal, which allows fluid to work its way up in to the motor. Also, it has carbon brushes. I found a motor which worked very well and bolted right on to a Stock Adel Hyd. Package top. I only had a very limited supply of these and they are all gone, I never advertised these motors because I didn't want to interfere with Merlyn and their STC'ed motor program. Many motors have been adapted over the years, but only Merlyn has obtained an STC, which I applaud, and recommend. -- Jim

Subj: Re: Hydraulic pump motor
From: (Lewis Fisher)
Jim: Thank you so much for your response to my questions. How do I get in touch with Merlyn? -- Lew Fisher

Subj: Motor Brushes
From: Richard Aaron <>
Dear Jim, Two quick questions. 1. Would you know the part number for the brushes on a "Zito" motor? 2. Is there an easier way than trial and error to set the Gear Warning Light micro switch?  Also, my cowl latches have been working with no trouble. Did you get the blurb that I sent some time back? Regards, Dick Aaron, N2405B

Joe Zito used several different motors over the years. I would suggest you remove the brushes and take them to an electric motor supply place and try and find some that match. I had a Honda motorcycle starter on one Swift and needed brushes. I went to a Honda dealer and asked for some brushes. The first thing the parts guy wanted to know of course was for what model, which I didn't know. I showed him the old brushes, he growled a little but brought out several sets of brushes one of which was the right type. Set the switch so it "clicks" just before the throttle closes. I think you want it to activate the circuit at about 18" MP. Yes, I got what you sent, but really don't know what to tell you. Some guys have adapted "suitcase" latches. Others have adapted an Airloc quick fastener, but I have not done that so I can't tell how to do it. -- Jim

Subj: Swift hyd power pack
From: Alan O'Gorman <>
Jim,  Denis Arbeau has suggested I contact you , I am in the process of purchasing a 46 swift 145 but cannot take delivery until the MPI is signed out , this can`t happen because the gear don't work . The original pump motor is shot and not up to the job . The outfit I'm dealing with have tried adapting a unit from a C 210 without success , and have now fitted a gear motor from a Seneca which they tell me works perfectly however there is now a damaged linkage which has to be replaced My questions are , Does it sound OK to use the Seneca gear motor. Is it possible that the use of that motor has damaged the linkage. Is there any chance of obtaining a reliable motor from you or any other source. Do you have any idea how long it will be before the Merlyn motor is approved ( I have mailed Merlyn with the same question ) Are spare undercart parts available, (They are having a new linkage made because apparently a spare can't be obtained ) Unfortunately I live a long way from the AMO and haven't been able to get there to see exactly what's happening , can't even tell you exactly which linkage is damaged . Many thanks, Alan O`Gorman, Cato Ridge, South Africa

The "linkage" between the motor and the hydraulic pump is a simple piece of tubing with the correct ID and a couple of slots for the drive pins. Any suitably sized 12V motor can be adapted if it turns the right direction. Merlyn products in the US now has available an STC'ed motor, but it sounds like your problem right now is not with the motor itself. The coupling is something any competent aircraft mechanic should be able to fabricate using common sense. Regarding the "new linkage"... Do you mean the gear linkage? Or the coupling between the motor and the hydraulic pump? The motor itself should not damage anything. The hydraulic pressure should be 425 psi. I believe Merlyn has their motor approved and available now. Contact the Swift Parts Co in Athens, TN USA re: availability of any landing gear linkage parts. I believe they have a supply of just about everything right now. The president of the Swift Association, Mr. Charlie Nelson, is not the parts man, but you could try emailing him at: <> -- Jim

Subject: Merlyn Gear Motor
If ANYONE still has the original Adel motor I would encourage them to replace it with the Merlyn motor. The original motor will always be a source of trouble. Also, there are numerous "bogus" - non-approved - motors installed on some Swifts. This is a chance to clean up your paperwork with an FAA approved part.
(Editor's note: To order your gear motor and/or get details on all the items mentioned above you can contact Suzanne Evans at Merlyn Products via email at: <>. Or you can call: (509) 838-7500 And you can go visit the Merlyn Products website on the internet at :

BRUSH-OFF... (110100)
Subj: Hydraulic Motor Brushes
From: Richard Aaron <>
Jim, I've been able to locate some brushes for my hydraulic motor from a Honda dealer (their p/n 31201-216-005). They're carbon, but cost $40 per set. A local starter shop had ones that fit for $10 a set; however, they look like they're made of copper or bronze. The fellow in the shop told me that they're impregnated with graphite and work as well as graphite ones. Are these OK to use? Thanks. Regards, Dick N2405B

Dick, In my experience, the metallic brushes are superior to the carbon ones. I would welcome comment by a real electric motor expert. -- Jim


Subj: Hydraulic Power Pack Overhaul
Hi Jim,
Hope the weather in Lake Elmo is being kind to you. I have a couple of questions on overhaul of the hydraulic power pack for the Swift. Firstly, do you know of anyone who overhauls these units now that Joe is no longer with Swift Parts? Secondly, if I have to do it myself any tips that you can give would be greatly appreciated. I have read the Cummings Hydraulic Manual but it seams to leave some things unsaid. For example how do you know if the seal plates need dressing and how do you do this if its necessary? Are there any traps to watch out for? Thanks for your help. Best regards. Alan

The weather here is terrible! Today we got almost a foot of snow. I should have gone south for the winter! No, I don't know if anyone is doing those hydraulic packages these days. I have done it, but I don't claim to be good at it! If you try it, work on a clean bench and have a clean floor in the shop. (It's much easier to find small parts and check balls that way!) A couple of small screwdrivers and dental picks are handy tools for working on the power pack. I would suggest you remove the selectors one at a time. That way, if (when) you get confused you can refer to the other one. Note the order of disassembly, making notes if you like. Be sure to reassemble everything in the reverse order. Note the small drilled hole which must be inboard when reassembled. To remove the brass plates depends on why you are working on the unit. If you are just replacing "O" rings because of leakage, don't mess with them. If the system has internal leakage, it may be necessary to take them out and lap them on a flat plate. If the plates are scored, they need attention Are there any traps? Yep! Several times I have overhauled these units and they were worse after I had worked on them! After doing the unit again, or maybe a third time I finally got it right. Good luck! -- Jim

From: Bill Walker <>
Hi Jim
Been reading about the slow retraction problem some guys are having. A few years ago (we wont go into that) I had a problem with N80799 and I worked on it for a couple of months, doing all of the things that you mentioned in your replies., and nothing worked. I could do the retraction on the jacks and it was fine, take off and it was fine as long as I kept the airspeed below 85 mph. THEN, I flew over to New Braunfels Airport for a cup of coffee and b.s. and when I took off to go home or somewhere else. It would not come up until I went negative, once I set off the ELT. After running the battery down on the aircraft and in my pickup, I installed a new battery in the aircraft and still the same , fast on jacks slow or no in the air. I did all of your suggestions, still no work right. FINALLY, I took off the whole pump assembly and cleaned it thoroughly outside, drained it and flushed it with varisol ( I believe that is the right name, it was sold by ESSO - EXXON -- a solvent) then I filled a pan with the solvent and disassembled the whole unit under the clean fluid and as I took the pressure regulator for the gear out a very small piece of gasket material floated out. It seems that the spring pressure would compress the piece of gasket material after sitting overnight or for a period of time and it would hold the pressure until the pressure valve was opened and the gasket material would swell enough to keep the pump from developing full pressure. Anyway, the story is, that it worked fine after that. -- Bill Walker

Subj: Gear and flap retraction in 78311
From:Mark & Rhonda Oltjenbruns <>
Hi Jim ,
I out to go flying this morning and I have a slight drop in my flap actuator. Which is next on my list , but instead of the flaps popping right up they didn't come up . I turn off the master flap switch and started the motor . The flaps came right up after I reenergized the master flap switch they came up a little slower than normal . Did my runups taxied for takeoff all normal ,but the gear at 75 didn't want to retract . I came back and landed check the reservoir added a little fluid . Tried to lower the flaps nothing happened. Started the engine still nothing happened. I guess all my 25 hours dual took its toll on my gear / flap motor. I checked the relay / solenoid power to both sides when trying to lower the flaps but still nothing happened. The motor has Mitsuba 8N-228 , 12V 0.6kw on it . Does this sound like the Honda motor ? It sounds like the motor has given up the ghost . Can I just change the brushes or should I assume that the motor needs replacing and get a gear motor from Merlyn Products ? Swift 78311 is a great plane the more I fly more I like the Swift . Thanks , Mark

It COULD be the motor, but there are things to check first. Check if power is getting to the motor. If neither the gear or flaps work that pretty well leaves out the gear relay because the relay isn't used for the flaps. Check the red button circuit breaker and cycle the gear and flap circuit breakers. Remember, these items might be 50 years old and may need replacing. When I worked for NWA I took a handful of circuit breakers into work and had the electricians check them. Regardless of rating, they were all over the place as to when they would "pop". Like a 5A circuit breaker would take 25 amps to "pop" it. Or a 30A circuit breaker might "pop" at 25 amps. Having said all that, if the motor operated slowly and then not at all, it probably is the motor. I don't know if that might be a Honda motor, but whatever, it probably is "non approved". The Merlyn motor is an STC'ed unit and reliable. If your checks indicate the motor is at fault, I would strongly suggest you get a Merlyn motor. -- Jim

Subj: Gear and flap retraction in 78311
From:Mark & Rhonda Oltjenbruns <>
Thanks for the info . There is a 30amp gear only fusebreaker but no flap breaker . The relay next to the pump resevoir/pump clicks when I try to cycle the flaps . Does that relay only work with flaps or for gear only . It is a little corroded . I sprayed some LPS 3 on it so I can losen it without damaging something . I'll see if I can get a set of jacks until I can weld up some . I looked on the site . You talk about a relay from Spruce 111-226 for 16.95 is this the relay I need for the gear ? Also I have two extra Adel pumps , I sent Dick an e-mail to see if they where any good or if any can be rebuilt , but it sounds like Merlyn is the way to go , can I expect them to be a couple hundred bucks or so ? Thanks , Mark

There should be a 5A landing gear circuit breaker and a 30 amp flap circuit breaker. (The flap circuit operates without a relay) There also should be a red button circuit breaker to the right of the system circuit breakers for the hydraulic system. Ron Williamson came up with the best relay for the Swift landing gear. It is Granger item no. 6C028 MFG MODEL NO. 70-111224-5 Manufacturer Essex White Rodgers. That number I came up with may not be right. I guess I should review the "Monty the Answer Man" archive and delete any questionable info. If the relay clicks but the motor does not run it sounds like the motor is faulty. Every Swift owner needs a set of jacks. By Adel pumps, do you mean power packs, including the original motors? The original motors are not much good. I don't know the present price for a Merlyn motor, but it was $475 plus core. I guess I should stress the value of having an STC'ed part. I am trying to get an STC right now for a Sensenich prop and the difficulty in dealing with the FAA to get an STC has to be experienced to be believed. The Merlyn motor will make operating your Swift a much more enjoyable experience! -- Jim

Subj: Brushes
From: Paul Smith <>
I am in need of brushes for the hydraulic pump motor. Do you know where I can get them? Thanks, Paul Smith

Well, it depends on what motor you have. Do you have the original GE motor? Swift Parts has always had them. The original motor is the rounded aluminum motor with the brushes accessible by screwing out two bakelite covers on the side. There are two types, the 35 amp brushes are a little thicker. If for some reason Swift Parts hasn't got them, a major electric motor supply house, such as H A Holden in Minneapolis, MN stocks them. If you have the Merlyn motor, contact Merlyn for parts. If you have a Honda motor, you will have to disassemble the motor and remove the brushes and take them to a Honda parts place and show them what you need. Ditto with any other type of motor. If the motor type is unknown most electric motor supply places can match up the brushes. -- Jim