Adding Cowling Louvers

So I have been battling the never ending battle to be able to run normal CHT’s. It’s been really frustrating because I know these aren’t normal. I am missing something and I can’t really put my finger on it. After talking to a friend at the airport, he suggested I order the Van’s cowl louver kit.

It’s pretty simple.
– You mark out the area
– Remove any foam core material
– Reinforce the area with fiberglass
– I had to fill in where there was a cowl-flap
– Cut your openings
– Bend the louvers to their shape
– Match drill and rivet the louvers in place
– Micro the joints and clean things up (Not a Van’s step – just wanted to do it)
– Finish the exterior of the cowl and prime.

For those wondering, Ted had a friend of his make this a split lower cowl. While it sounded good, it makes working on these a major pain in the ass.

Replacing the cowl flap opening.

The whole installation didn’t take too long. If I didn’t have to fill in the cowl flap opening, I could’ve done this in a weekend. But with the extra fiberglass work, it took longer.

Riveting in the cowling louvers.

Once these were installed and I did my finish work (sanding, micro, rage gold, prime, etc.) these came out pretty decent.

You can barely tell that I used to have a big-assed hole on this side.
Co-pilot side

The Final Verdict: The cowl louvers will be helpful for cooling and climbout. I did see better CHT’s on climb-out, but I am still not comfortable with how fast they climb during climb-out. See my best cooling improvements under the baffle sealing.