Flexible Hose Fluid Lines

Flexible hose is used in aircraft fluid systems to connect moving parts with stationary parts in locations subject to vibration or where a great amount of flexibility is needed. It can also serve as a connector in metal tubing systems.

Hose Materials and Construction

Pure rubber is never used in the construction of flexible fluid lines. To meet the requirements of strength, durability, and workability, among other factors, synthetics are used in place of pure rubber. Synthetic materials most commonly used in the manufacture of flexible hose are Buna-N, neoprene, butyl, ethylene propylene diene rubber (EPDM) and Teflon™. While Teflon™ is in a category of its own, the others are synthetic rubber.

Buna-N is a synthetic rubber compound which has excellent resistance to petroleum products. Do not confuse with Buna-S. Do not use for phosphate ester base hydraulic fluid (Skydrol).

Neoprene is a synthetic rubber compound which has an acetylene base. Its resistance to petroleum products is not as good as Buna-N, but it has better abrasive resistance. Do not use for phosphate ester base hydraulic fluid (Skydrol).

Butyl is a synthetic rubber compound made from petroleum raw materials. It is an excellent material to use with phosphate ester base hydraulic fluid (Skydrol). Do not use with petroleum products.

Flexible rubber hose consists of a seamless synthetic rubber inner tube covered with layers of cotton braid and wire braid and an outer layer of rubber-impregnated cotton braid. This type of hose is suitable for use in fuel, oil, coolant, and hydraulic systems. The types of hose are normally classified by the amount of pressure they are designed to withstand under normal operating conditions.

Low, Medium, and High Pressure Hoses

  • Low pressure — below 250 psi. Fabric braid reinforcement.
  • Medium pressure — up to 3,000 psi. One wire braid reinforcement. Smaller sizes carry up to 3,000 psi. Larger sizes carry pressure up to 1,500 psi.
  • High pressure — all sizes up to 3,000 psi operating pressures.

Hose Identification

Lay lines and identification markings consisting of lines, letters, and numbers are printed on the hose. [Figure 7-26]

Figure 7.26 Hose identification markings.

Figure 7.26 Hose identification markings. [Click to enlarge.]

Most hydraulic hose is marked to identify its type, the quarter and year of manufacture, and a 5-digit code identifying the manufacturer. These markings are in contrasting colored letters and numerals which indicate the natural lay (no twist) of the hose and are repeated at intervals of not more than 9 inches along the length of the hose. Code markings assist in replacing a hose with one of the same specifications or a recommended substitute. Hose suitable for use with phosphate ester base hydraulic fluid will be marked Skydrol use. In some instances, several types of hose may be suitable for the same use. Therefore, to make the correct hose selection, always refer to the applicable aircraft maintenance or parts manual.

Teflon™ is the DuPont trade name for tetrafluoroethylene resin. It has a broad operating temperature range (−65 °F to +450 °F). It is compatible with nearly every substance or agent used. It offers little resistance to flow; sticky, viscous materials will not adhere to it. It has less volumetric expansion than rubber, and the shelf and service life is practically limitless. Teflon™ hose is flexible and designed to meet the requirements of higher operating temperatures and pressures in present aircraft systems. Generally, it may be used in the same manner as rubber hose. Teflon™ hose is processed and extruded into tube shape to a desired size. It is covered with stainless steel wire, which is braided over the tube for strength and protection. Teflon™ hose is unaffected by any known fuel, petroleum, or synthetic base oils, alcohol, coolants, or solvents commonly used in aircraft. Teflon™ hose has the distinct advantages of a practically unlimited storage time, greater operating temperature range, and broad usage (hydraulic, fuel, oil, coolant, water, alcohol, and pneumatic systems). Medium-pressure Teflon™ hose assemblies are sometimes preformed to clear obstructions and to make connections using the shortest possible hose length. Since preforming permits tighter bends that eliminate the need for special elbows, preformed hose assemblies save space and weight. Never straighten a preformed hose assembly. Use a support wire if the hose is to be removed for maintenance. [Figure 7-27]

Figure 7-27. Suggested handling of preformed hose.

Figure 7-27. Suggested handling of preformed hose.

Rigid Tubing Installation and Inspection

Fluid Lines & Fittings

Rigid Tubing Installation and Inspection Before installing a line assembly in an aircraft, inspect the line carefully. Remove dents and scratches, and be sure all nuts and sleeves are snugly mated and securely fitted by proper flaring of the tubing. The line assembly should be clean and free of all foreign matter. Connection and Torque […]

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Rigid Fluid Lines – AN Flared Fittings, MS Flareless Fittings, Swaged Fittings, Cryofit Fittings

Fluid Lines & Fittings

AN Flared Fittings A flared tube fitting consists of a sleeve and a nut, as shown in Figure 7-15. The nut fits over the sleeve and, when tightened, draws the sleeve and tubing flare tightly against a male fitting to form a seal. Tubing used with this type of fitting must be flared before installation. […]

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Turbine Engine Lubrication Systems

Lubrication and Cooling Systems

Both wet- and dry-sump lubrication systems are used in gas turbine engines. Wet-sump engines store the lubricating oil in the engine proper, while dry-sump engines utilize an external tank mounted on the engine or somewhere in the aircraft structure near the engine, similar to reciprocating piston engines mentioned earlier. Turbine engine’s oil systems can also […]

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Requirements for Turbine Engine Lubricants

Lubrication and Cooling Systems

There are many requirements for turbine engine lubricating oils. Due to the absence of reciprocating motion and the presence of ball and roller bearings (antifriction bearings), the turbine engine uses a less viscous lubricant. Gas turbine engine oil must have a high viscosity for good load-carrying ability but must also be of sufficiently low viscosity […]

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Recommendations for Changing Oil

Lubrication and Cooling Systems

Draining Oil Oil, in service, is constantly exposed to many harmful substances that reduce its ability to protect moving parts. The main contaminants are: Gasoline Moisture Acids Dirt Carbon Metallic particles Because of the accumulation of these harmful substances, common practice is to drain the entire lubrication system at regular intervals and refill with new […]

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Lubrication System Maintenance Practices

Lubrication and Cooling Systems

Oil Tank The oil tank, constructed of welded aluminum, is serviced (filled) through a filler neck located on the tank and equipped with a spring-loaded locking cap. Inside the tank, a weighted, flexible rubber oil hose is mounted so that it is repositioned automatically to ensure oil pickup during all maneuvers. A dipstick guard is […]

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Reciprocating Engine Lubrication Systems – Wet-Sump Lubrication System Operation

Lubrication and Cooling Systems

A simple form of a wet-sump system is shown in Figure 6-16. The system consists of a sump or pan in which the oil supply is contained. The oil supply is limited by the sump (oil pan) capacity. The level (quantity) of oil is indicated or measured by a vertical rod that protrudes into the […]

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Reciprocating Engine Lubrication Systems – Dry Sump Lubrication System Operation

Lubrication and Cooling Systems

The following lubrication system is typical of those on small, single-engine aircraft. The oil system and components are those used to lubricate a 225 horsepower (hp) six-cylinder, horizontally opposed, air-cooled engine. In a typical dry sump pressure-lubrication system, a mechanical pump supplies oil under pressure to the bearings throughout the engine. [Figure 6-4] The oil […]

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