Sun 'n Fun 2017 boasts a super selection of vendors with products for builders and owners of EAB aircraft. There are four large hangars in addition to acres of outdoor displays. If you were shopping for an electronic ignition to replace standard magnetos you were especially spoilt for choice with the manufacturers of four such systems on hand to answer questions and sell their wares.
One system that has been popular on 4 cylinder engines is the PMag. Good news for 6-cylinder Lycoming owners is that there is now a 6-cylinder version. The new 6-cylinder model is similar to its predecessor in that it has internal power generation and variable spark advance based on MAP & RPM, but it also has a couple of new features. The new PMag incorporates a fixed timing system into each unit as well as the variable timing. In the event of an ignition anomaly you can simply turn on the redundant fixed timing (which disables the variable timing). The advantage of this is that you would still be operating on two ignition sources and the consequences of guessing incorrectly about which ignition is misbehaving are drastically reduced.
To accommodate the dual ignitions in each unit the timing method changes from the 'blow in the tube' method familiar to 4-cylinder PMag owners. As part of the new timing method users are also able to set the start and end points for additional timing advance. The company has quite a few pre-orders and is striving to begin deliveries to these early customers at the end of May.