Dual Tach for Helicycle

baronpilot

Newbie
Joined
Apr 17, 2012
Messages
544
Location
Auburn, IN
Aircraft
Baron B55, Bonanza V35, Brantly B2B
Total Flight Time
2500
Anyone else using this dual Tach?

IMO, the instrumentation in the Helicycle is weak and the tach setup is very lacking. I especially think the wide needle on the main rotor tach is not very readable when you are talking about 20 RPM's making a difference and the needle is good for 10 RPM just in width!

I have never flown a helicopter that did not have a dual tach and I like the looks of this setup.

Furthermore, I think the machine should not only have an oil pressure guage for the transmission as Stan's machine does, but it should also have a chip detector as well - Transmissions of this type generally do not fail instantly and will give warning, but you have to have the proper detection equipment. I think it is nuts that the factory skimped on these important items.

http://www.juanr.com/pages/acrobat/helicycle/Doug's Production Tach.pdf
 
Last edited by a moderator:

StanFoster

Active Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2003
Messages
16,980
Location
Paxton, Il
Aircraft
Helicycle N360SF
Total Flight Time
1250
Todd- my tach is huge and easy to read! Where are you coming up with this stuff? Ha. How much time did you say you have as a helicopter pilot? I can tell a 2 rpm drop. The guys are trying different chip detectors, and until I hear of one that doesn't give false readings, I will just wait. I am glad you are finding so much wrong with the Helicycle. I am sure we will hear more! Stan
 

baronpilot

Newbie
Joined
Apr 17, 2012
Messages
544
Location
Auburn, IN
Aircraft
Baron B55, Bonanza V35, Brantly B2B
Total Flight Time
2500
Sheesh Stan. I find two things I do not like :)

This is not my first rodeo with helicopter and planes fortunately. Part of the problem is that I am use to married needles where a power problem or clutch slipping would be evident. It gives you one place to look instead of two.

Furthermore, I am not a fan of Westach gauges and someone correct me if I am wrong, but I think they make the rotor tach. The Westach gauges that we're in my Safari were junk and my velocity as well.

I will not ask any more questions about the machine and will keep quiet about my modifications.
 

baronpilot

Newbie
Joined
Apr 17, 2012
Messages
544
Location
Auburn, IN
Aircraft
Baron B55, Bonanza V35, Brantly B2B
Total Flight Time
2500
Please disregard my post. I will leave the tach as it was originally designed.
 

mast-bump

Newbie
Joined
May 8, 2012
Messages
6
Location
Australia
..........Where are you coming up with this stuff? Ha. How much time did you say you have as a helicopter pilot?....... I am glad you are finding so much wrong with the Helicycle. I am sure we will hear more!

Stan, I hope these comments were in jest, I have followed your posts since day 1 of the hatchery and I had come to think you'd be above saying things like that.
Though baronpilot may have retracted his thoughts, his point is something that is entirely relevant, I also haven't ever flown [or even seen] a [cert]helicopter without a dual tach and i was surprised to see that there wasn't even a split needle robbie-style tach in the cycle, Especially given that the belt slippage under high power is designed into it as its overpitching/overtorque prevention. The article posted in post #1 of this thread made for a good read and some definite relevant points, Just to add to that, It is not just the synchronisation of rpm that matters, but the motion of them, if they form a habit of moving away and then rejoining under power, if the engine appears to 'drag' the rotor needle down under power cut conditions**.. etc etc etc..

** this is a check that you should be doing on your startups, stan, It is not just a case of chopping the noise and watching the blade rpm float down, the engine rpm has to drop, it cant float down, stop halfway, stutter on its way down.. it has to appear that the systems are completely disengaged, ive seen instances where the motor dragged the rotor down, not by much, but by enough that with a bit of adjustment the difference was certainly noticable.. in this case it would be severely stealing your autorotational capabilities.. something you DO NOT want to compromise, as you have already realised first hand.
Do the split-needle/throttle-chop/sprag-check test multiple times if youre not sure... I know I do... get some memetics going with your checks so you dont forget.. (think back to '22 days.. 'sprags, mags, horns....blablabla')

The parallax error mentioned in the article shouldnt be a problem.. at least its not something i have heard many complaints of in the pilot community.. the current machine i fly displays a dual tach on an LCD screen so this is not an issue for me directly, but i will keep an ear out for it.

As far as chip detectors go, thats your perogative.. if it makes you feel more comfortable, go for it, some people may not aggree with you at times, but that will continue until you're the only one left on the planet.. we all have thoughts like this... I, personally would like to see more civilian/heli pilots wearing parachutes... but i always get into disagreeing conversations hearing that they'd be useless.. for me its the 99% chance of death vs. 100% (in the case of super-catastrophic failure).. and id happily take that 1%... Probably just a frame of mind that i picked up eons ago where it was ALWAYS flightsuit, chute, and helmet (something else i think light heli pilots are insane for being naked of, but thats just me... some people think anyone that goes near ANY aircraft without a nice gallet has a deathwish..)

Now, your last comments kind of spell out defenciveness of the cycle.. and sarcasm towards baron?... im sure thats not the true case and that I am only getting half the story by reading.. Ill preface my points by saying that i love the cycle... I want one, I want five... but they cant be immune from critisisms.. You found your own critisisms of the machine in its skid design, that you countered with the implementation of your wire pretensioners... There are things that the nit-picker in me doesnt like about the cycle,.. as well as not likeing the tacky interior panels of 206b3's, or the paint finish on any robbie, eurocopter.. bla bla bla.. Pointing them out gives an oppertunity to improve them.. as you found with your skids, and as i think baron and the writer of the above article found by putting a proper tachometer in their helicycles.. It certainly makes the panel look a lot tidier and proffessional.. from my point of view at least..

I've been typing for too long.. what was I gonna say?.. oh nevermind..

Since Ive taken the plunge and registered with this forum I just wanna commend some of you on your helis, there are some REALLY nice toys on here thats for sure.. Loved the helicycle hatchery thread, It was exciting reading day by day, waiting for the turbine, seeing it all flying.. outstanding.. Gave me some great insight into the design of the machine that i have had my envious eye on for at least the last 5 years.

regards.
M

oh yeah.. i was gonna make a point about dual tachs and rejoining the needles on power recoverys without sending a shock through the transmission... my fingers are tired.. time for bed..
 
Last edited:

StanFoster

Active Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2003
Messages
16,980
Location
Paxton, Il
Aircraft
Helicycle N360SF
Total Flight Time
1250
Mast bump- I have no defense about my remarks. I know there are room for improvements to be made on the Helicycle, I sure hasve attempted a few myself. I apologize to todd for getting my shorts in a knot. It just pulled my string to have several strong critisisms, and I just handled it wrong. I won't edit my stupid reactions, but will just leave them showing I have some flaws of my own to work on. I will try counting to 20 instead of 10 from now on before I knee jerk react again. It doesn't happen often, but once is too many times. Sincerely, stan
 

Resasi

Gold Supporter
Joined
Jul 2, 2007
Messages
7,955
Location
London/ Kilifi Kenya
Aircraft
Gyrs, RAF 2000/Mgni/Bnsn/Hrnet/Mrlin/Crckt/MT-03/Lyzlle AV18-A/Prdtor. Pax ArrowCopter
Total Flight Time
100+ gyro, 16,000+ other
Stan your reaction seemed quite mild, almost jocular in fact (although it might have hit a nerve and not have been.:)

Written words can so often be misinterpreted, but you really didn't seem out of line there at all, and I 'm sure Baron Pilot knows that too having just met you.

I certainly know how late night posts can be MB. I have seemed on occasions to stir up others by unfortunate comments of mine, though you at least appear to have your subject well in hand.
 

mast-bump

Newbie
Joined
May 8, 2012
Messages
6
Location
Australia
Two more points I forgot to make..

A story about a machine that had a chip detector in the TRGB, 300 hours of commercial flying and no problems, inspect the gearbox with a probe-camera-thingy (its late and i cant remember the proper term) and the engineer sees something he doesnt like, pull apart the box and we find not scratches, but you might barely even call them demi-scratches, cleanly and linierily taken out of each gear tooth, probably only a few thousanths of a mm deep, not enough to feel, but enough that you could see.. Its unknown how long this took to gather, but there were no TR chip lights for the duration of those hours... (the box got replaced on warranty but the aircraft has since been crashed :().. point being that as said, the chip detectors are not perfect.. there are 'for's and 'against's of this one, as i have read stories of the lights coming on (a great story from a local pilot flying an old 500 around a tuna boat, when the light came on, and he had no choice to fly 50 miles or whatever back to his boat.. yikes)


And then theres Another story about a machine that when the throttle was chopped the blades seemed to spin down OK but the engine was 'stable' above what it should be until the needles joined and then they settled together.. another positive driver for *active* preflights!..

I need to ammend my origional post before someone else does..

this

ecially given that the belt slippage under high power is designed into it as its overpitching/overtorque prevention.

is incorrect, it is only an overtorque prevention, if anything it makes it more likely to overpitch... not sure why i thought OP origionally.. hmm..

Cheers and safe flying and safe going to bed and getting a good nights sleep.
 

WaspAir

Supreme Allied Gyro CFI
Joined
Oct 21, 2006
Messages
5,266
Location
Colorado front range
Aircraft
Bell 47G-3B-1 / A&S 18A / Phoebus C, etc.
Total Flight Time
stopped caring at 1000
My standard airworthiness Bell 47 has no chip detector lights.
 

StanFoster

Active Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2003
Messages
16,980
Location
Paxton, Il
Aircraft
Helicycle N360SF
Total Flight Time
1250
Mast bump- Glad you enjoyed the Helicycle build thread...thanks for the comment about it. I originally was going to put chip detectors in my main transmission and tail rotor gear box. I even had the warning lights pre-wired into the wiring harness...and just waiting for a chip detector that was working right. I kept hearing about errant chip lights going on....and even chip detectors that had chips and didnt light. So I waited...and waited...and then decided to use the lights for low oil pressure lights instead.....and I would just drain the oil in the TR gearbox often...and inspect it.

I love my oil pressure lights as at least I will know if I blow an oil line or lose oil pressure for any reason... my red light will come on.

I like my rotor tach, but I have mentioned several times I want a low rotor rpm warning system. I know I can simply spend $800 and switch the tach out with one that has a low rotor warning in it....but I am trying to come up with a much less expensive way. I have a few ideas but until my latest rotorhead fairing project gets cancelled or gets a green light....thats where my limited spare time is going to right now.

Stan
 

hillberg

Super Member
Joined
May 24, 2010
Messages
5,298
Location
Low Earth Orbit
Chip detectors are either fuzz or after the gear box has failed already. The true indication of pending failure is heat- NOT fuzz or chips. A stripe of zink cromate paint, temp gage or a teletemp strip will tell what the gear boxes are doing. Love the dual tach that Doug has, Another quick sprage check tool- As for rpm/torque limits if you need to look at a dial all the time get more instruction-Your ears can tell whats going on over head .
 

StanFoster

Active Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2003
Messages
16,980
Location
Paxton, Il
Aircraft
Helicycle N360SF
Total Flight Time
1250
I could easily hear the whine of the transmission gears in the R22, but with my headsets on in the helicycle, can't hardly detect the tranny or the turbine.. I would like to have a low rotor rpm buzzer, just in case the governor was slowly dropping rpm on the turbine. Stan
 

500e

Active Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2008
Messages
480
Location
UK
Aircraft
500c\d\e 300C & CBi
Total Flight Time
a lot more now
Hb
Believe me Chip detectors do work have pictures & bills to prove :Cry:
Boxe was not over temp, & oil looked clean with a x5 mag on a white background. Pic is main GB input shaft on the 500,:rip: made fuzz once, cleaned hovered for 30 minutes ok, flew for 18 months ok, then light on put down in field removed plugs small chip on lower mag plug trucked home.
There was no noise difference.
This year fuzz on tail box mag plug, box being re built as we speak, will post pics when we get parts & box back
The
 
Last edited:

500e

Active Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2008
Messages
480
Location
UK
Aircraft
500c\d\e 300C & CBi
Total Flight Time
a lot more now
Good day Stan see you are on line so little Fuzz so much damage
this is the mating gear
 
Last edited:

StanFoster

Active Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2003
Messages
16,980
Location
Paxton, Il
Aircraft
Helicycle N360SF
Total Flight Time
1250
500e- I see what you mean. What's your opinion of my draining my TR gearbox oil every 10 hours into a clear plastic cup? I look for any minute aerticle, then put new oil in. Initially I saw a couple of small specs, but they would not stick to a magnetn so it wasn't gear metal. I would still do this if I had a chip detector. Stan
 

500e

Active Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2008
Messages
480
Location
UK
Aircraft
500c\d\e 300C & CBi
Total Flight Time
a lot more now
Stan the Fzzzz was like nothing! well like colored oil, you could not feel anything rolled between fingers, finer than No 10 pumice powder.
We now send samples to lab for testing at annual, may be over the top but?
When we pull the mags we examine under a X10 glass now to start with, ALL oils main GB, Tail GB, & engine,drained into clear containers & left to settle, if there is any question of contamination we siphon most of the settled oil out, using white paper around a strong magnet ( disc drive magnets ) swill oil around, then look with the x10.
Slightly anal I know but after the main box & tail it don,t take long & at least you feel that you have gone the extra mile
 

StanFoster

Active Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2003
Messages
16,980
Location
Paxton, Il
Aircraft
Helicycle N360SF
Total Flight Time
1250
Brett- I will upgrade my oil inspections to your excellent method. Thanks for sharing. I learn a lot here. Stan
 

500e

Active Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2008
Messages
480
Location
UK
Aircraft
500c\d\e 300C & CBi
Total Flight Time
a lot more now
Stan the Fzzzz was like nothing! well like colored oil, you could not feel anything rolled between fingers, finer than No 10 pumice powder.
We now send samples to lab for testing at annual, may be over the top but?
When we pull the mags we examine under a X10 glass now to start with, ALL oils main GB, Tail GB, & engine,drained into clear containers & left to settle, if there is any question of contamination we siphon most of the settled oil out, using white paper around a strong magnet ( disc drive magnets ) swill oil around, then look with the x10.
Slightly anal I know but after the main box & tail it don,t take long & at least you feel that you have gone the extra mile
Forgot to say like Doug's Tach if it works like it looks :hail:
 

mast-bump

Newbie
Joined
May 8, 2012
Messages
6
Location
Australia
Hi all again.

I would think the 10 hour cup inspections to be more than adequate, An idea to incorporate might be to squish the oil between two bits of [sterile] glass, (like when you go to look at liquid under a microscope between two slides, only on a large scale!!)

For what its worth I have heard that the enigma EFIS systems display a digital dual tach, would probably be narrow band/green band/ low rpm programmable, Theyre quite expensive though, but look outstanding...

drool: http://www.kitcopterconsult.com/nightflight2.JPG

You'd get all the girls, thats for sure...

Stan while you were talking about eccy alarms, you got me brain crunching, since in theory the idea should be a very simple circuit... a horn/light that comes on when an input recieves a specific signal.. at first i thought back to 9th grade electronics, and that you might be able to make up a circuit with a small programmable IC in it, and bridge that circuit off your MR tach... but then it hit me..

In the 'poser' racecar scene (I/acquaintances never used them) you can get enormous tachometers that include 'shift' lights (because apparently drag racing requires so little skill that you dont even have to know when to change gear yourself).. , you can also get the lights on their own, The lights display yellow,green, and red, depending on what RPM they see (and what you've programmed them for). Depending on how saavy you are with a soldering iron, this might be a valid option.. May look a bit tacky in an aviation application, but an interesting option to think about!..

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/New-Type...Accessories&hash=item5ad7aac049#ht_3719wt_681

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Vastuner...ccessories&hash=item336235e753#ht_6902wt_1016

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/BLACK-SH...ccessories&hash=item19d0c4cbf4#ht_4181wt_1253

Obviously the tach they come wiht would go straight to the bin, and the light might find itself 'tidied' up a bit, and linked in a circuit with a horn.. One thing i like about this is being a constant green, that your peripheral would get used to, it suddenly going yellow and then red would stand out very well..

Food for thought.
 
Last edited:
Top