Lycoming Woes Continue: 5100 Crankshafts To Be "Retired"

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In what appears to be the largest crankshaft-related service bulletin yet, Lycoming has notified field shops and distributors that it's calling for the "retirement" of 5100 additional crankshafts in certain -360, -390, -540 and -720 series four-, six- and eight-cylinder engines. The newest action follows close on the heels of Lycoming's last recall of nearly 400 crankshafts for -360 series engines last fall and brings the tally of affected crankshafts to some 7500. While last fall's action was a "recall," the latest mandatory service bulletin -- SB 569 (PDF file, here) -- requires the retirement of serial-number-specified crankshafts within the next three years, by Feb. 21, 2009, or at the first opportunity before then if the crankcase is opened up for overhaul or prop-strike inspection. The distinction between "recall" and "retirement" is one that some owners may not like.