We currently produce normally aspirated propulsion systems from 350 to 500 horsepower.
Currently there are nine converted Republic Seabees flying and two more under conversion. We have installed one V-8 in a Murphy Super Rebel and there are two Skymasters currently undergoing modification. Together they have accumulated approximately 4000 hours. The highest time V-8 Seabee is my own airplane, C-FILM. It has accumulated over 2000 hours. The longest trip has been from Balsam Lake to Key West Florida and return. We use whatever fuel is available, automotive or aviation. The aircraft continues to perform flawlessly. We have flown the aircraft from sea to level to 10,000 ft., and in temperatures ranging from -20°F to 113°F.
From a pilot's perspective, the performance and range improvement is spectacular. From a passenger's perspective, the heating and air-conditioning systems are welcome additions. From an owner's perspective, the 50% reduction in operating costs allows me to do more of what I love - flying!
We flew the original installation 2098 hours in the period from 4 July 4, 2000 to Dec 23, 2011.
During that time the aircraft performed far above my expectations. The engine and PSRU (Propeller Speed Reduction Unit) was performing well when it was removed. We removed it because my system was becoming dated. My SeaBee (C-FILM) was the first V8 conversion done. It was running an LS1 General Motors® Corvette engine with a manual throttle standard Seabee Hartzell® 3 blade propeller and our 1.68:1 reduction ratio. Most of my customers use the 1.98:1 ratio with an electric throttle. It had a conventional (dated) panel and was in need of some upgrading. We refurbished C-FILM with many improvements including a new General Motors® LS3 Corvette® engine, sporting a modified Edelbrock® supercharger (as seen in the image on this page), a new design single leaver control system that combines throttle, pitch, reverse & supercharger control functions in one unit, and a new design data link that allows the engine data to be sent directly from the engine control unit to the new MGL® IEFIS (Electronic Flight Information System) based panel. The data link avoids the hassle of wiring in engine sensors and has the benefit of letting the pilot monitor the actual General Motors® engine sensors that control the engine. We were back in the air 14 Jan 2014 and now have 99 hours on the new installation. I am really happy with the performance of the new engine and associated systems. I am sure C-FILM is one of most highly modified SeaBee ever flown.
I have not documented any performance numbers. For them to mean anything I would have to calibrate all the instruments & standardize the data. Sufficient to say, I have flown C-FILM in side by side comparisons with many Seabees, and none of them have come close to matching the performance. The LS3 is a noticeable improvement over the LS1. I have only flown the new engine to 10,000’ but was able to still pull 30” HG. Eventually, I will obtain an oxygen system and explore the higher elevations. These days my focus has shifted from the Seabee to trying to raise capital to build the prototype of our new Horizon X2 - the first amphibian you can land on the water with the wheels down without hurting yourself!
The list of C-FILM's modifications are as follows:
We are proud to endorse and utilize the following manufacturer's high quality products for our aircraft modifications: