Little Wing Boosters Questions, Comments and related info

RHerron

Senior Member
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Nov 17, 2003
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174
Location
Mayflower, Ark.
The plans call for a header tank but 6 gallons is simply not enough. Ron had put together a belly tank out of alluminum. Does anyone know how thick and the type of alluminum that we should use? I know thinner will form better but I can't find in my notes what the ideal thickness or type is. I am thinking about trying to lay up a mock tank. Thanks, jtm
Jim,

.050" 5052 aluminum is ideal. You should use the belly tank as a source to keep fuel in the header rather than the reverse.
Or, you can weld in a canister around the main pickup, inside the belly tank, and drill small holes in it. (I can send photos). This prevents cavitation of the pump when the fuel gets low or you are in an unusual attitude. With that configuration you can use the belly tank as the main source.

You need to provide mounting hardpoints for the belly tank by using (4) each 3/4inch aluminum tubes welded to both top and bottom skins and passing through the tank. On the original, I used 1" x 1/8" aluminum strap welded to both skins. However, I have since use the tubes since I can pass mounting hardware through the centers rather than depending entirely on the straps.


Ron
 

mcbirdman

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vw engine cooling on a tractor.

vw engine cooling on a tractor.

Thanks Ron.

I think Rich is coming up to my house this Sat. and I think besides trying to post some photos for him as he is progressing on covering his frame - I would like to come to a concensus on the shape and size of the tank also. I know you sent some photos to him before. Would you mind sending them to me if it is easy for you?

Great to hear from you !

BTW - On the single place engine we have it running great. Jim Holbrook placed some cooling fins on the engine along with installing the lower cooling tin. His cooling tin was made without the benifit of having the upper cowling and now sticks way to far up. I was going to make them much lower (and then wider to compensate but am wondering if I need them. I was looking at an older photo of the white/red LW (pre-radial) and don't see any of that in place. What do you think?

Can I just pull top off or does it leave the bottom plate being a problem? I can make some lower longer profile air intakes that will force the air down and around the back but if I only remove the top then it just leaves a cupped bottom 1/2 of the two cylinders. Wouldn't that be worse than not having them? Just wondering. Most likely I will just change the top because it won't hurt having them, it will force the air around and below the cylinder and it is too much work taking the heads off just to remove a cooling tin. Thanks, jtm
 

giro5

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Thanks for the info guys. The T tail I am building going on a kb2 so the structure will be about 3 inches from the prop blast at the vert stab and perhaps a foot or so on the HS. Been gone for a week but I will get back on the project tomorrow but I am still waiting on the wood cap strips to bring the small tubes out to match the front and rear of the various structures. The HS tubes are all the same size so I will be lacing to the tube directly. Spacing is no problem I was just wondering how wide to put the lacing holes when tying on to a round tube vs a support that was flat where the lacing would be right at the edge of the flat surface.
 

richard lidke

Littlewing Booster Aviat.
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May 2, 2004
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124
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Rolling Prarie, Indiana
Aircraft
Little Wing 2+2
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200
Ribs etc.

Ribs etc.

A couple of questions?? The gyro in the picture has an elevator. Are you planning to have both elevator and tilting in pitch contorl or just elevator?

I am building a Ron Heron Little Wing T tail for a bensen. I have the polyfiber manual and video on covering. The problem I have is the instruction material talkes about what to do when the rib are flat but not what to do when you have round tube as ribs. Ie. how far apart are the lacing holes? And if the ribs are smaller than the outer frame what do you do? My current plan is to use poly fill to glue some wood cap strips on the round tubing and fair it to the shape between the front and rear tubes on each sturcture ie vert stab, & rudder,. The Horiz stab is all one size so I am wondering how to lace the "ribs" on it with the round tubes. Any one have any experience in this??

Please look at our earlier shots on the other string. There you can see how I glued (with Gorilla glue), wood ribs onto the top and bottom edges of the square steel ribs running from fore to aft on the leading and trailing edges of the horizontal stabilizers and on the rudder.

There is a formula to develope the proper air foil curve to the added wood strip. It is (check your plans) 25% of the length infrom the front edge, 10 to 15 percent of the length from the front edge to the back edge in height of the curve. . I made a paper template to develope the curve, and to match the curve it would be glued to first.

(You can see some of these templates and the curves plainly in our other posts). You will need French curves to lay out your template before cutting the wood out. This information is very tiny and printed on one of the sheets. You will need a magnification glass to be able to read it. If you can't find it, we can look up the page for you.

There are no ribs on the plans for the rudder, so these were made up of fir and added to the rudder. This provides a secure place for one to attach the cloth with the stitching process.

The rib stitching is approximately 3 inches apart. I made a needle of a welding rod. Heated the head end and flattened it out, then cut a hole in it for the thread with a small cut off wheel in a moto-tool. Grind a long point on the other end. Use a small welding rod to keep the hole size down. Round and smooth everything good to keep any burrs from tearing the cloth.

Measure down the rib and make a dot with a felt marker on both sides of the rib, then do the same thing on the other side. Pierce the cloth with the needle, and line the point up with the dot on the other side, then pierce the backside, cross the rib with the thread, and return to the first side with the same process.

Wicks can supply you with data on ribstitching technique, or you might want to talk to one of your friends, as to how to tie the not, when moving from stitch to stitch. Its fun and easy, but takes a little time to get the technique right. It is one piece of thread from the first stitch to the last one on each rib.

You will place a protective felt strip, which is self adhesive from wicks about a quarter inch wide, over the outside of the cloth which has already been shrunk and doped, before you begin the process. Then you will follow it with a covering tape, which will reinforce the area, again doping it also, sealing it in place. The tape covers the stitching and seals and waterproofs it inside protecting the holes you have made where you pierced the cloth covering.

Remember you only glue the outside edges, so that the colth can shrink up over the ribs and move while doing this before you do the rib stitching. Do not glue the cloth to the ribs.

I am using my elevators for trim only, since I have a fully tilting rotorhead.

:first: Hope this helps. Booster Rich.
 
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richard lidke

Littlewing Booster Aviat.
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May 2, 2004
Messages
124
Location
Rolling Prarie, Indiana
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Little Wing 2+2
Total Flight Time
200
Welcome Keith

Welcome Keith

:yo:
Hi James,

I'm a Little Wing builder too. I'm finishing up my horizontal stabilizer.
I see in your picture that you have modified horizontal stabilizer ribs. Are they tube, wood, or both? I modified mine too, to simplify construction.
Did you also modify the rudder rib or did you build it to plans? I used channel rather than making it from sheet stock.
Thanks for the photos!

Keith
Keith nice to have you onboard with us. Keep up the great work! Littlewing Booster Rich. :whoo: (I used piper channel overlapped and tacked)
 

richard lidke

Littlewing Booster Aviat.
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Messages
124
Location
Rolling Prarie, Indiana
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Little Wing 2+2
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200

mcbirdman

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Location
Grand Ledge (Lansing) Michigan
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lw3 sp long, lw3 2place long yami
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150
Hi James

Would like to ask you the same questions that I asked Chuter. what is the maximum AOA you can get with the stick all the way back setting in a 3 point position and what is the minimum AOA in the 3 point position with the stick all the way foward.

Tony


HI Tony,

I have 9 degrees forward and 9 degrees backward on the stick. I have larger tires than the others but I believe sitting on the ground we already have the frame back around 13 degrees increased AOA just by it's stance...... I am guessing but it looks like when I push the stick forward it brings the disk back almost to zero, also on ground. Does that help you at all?
 

WHY

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HI James

Yes that helps but am confused a little, it looks like the mast has abut a 10 degree slope to it referenced to the center line through the fuselage so if you have a 9 degree front and a 9 degree back movement on the stick it would look like that sitting on the tailwheel at a angle of 13 degrees plus the 10 degrees slope of the mast plus 9 degrees back stick you would have a total of 32 degrees max AOA with stick back and a minimum of 14 degrees with stick max foward . Am just trying to see how the tractor I am building compairs, thanks for the info.

Tony
 

mcbirdman

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Hi Tony,

I know - it sounds like alot. I am going to guess here. You'll want to check this out. It SEEMS like you shouldn't worry about how much is there when it is sitting on the tail. With it sloped back it should only help you get rotors up to speed with more AOA.

Once the rotors are up to speed where it is just dragging and not going anywhere it seems like then would be a good time for a little forward stick. Yes maybe you cut into the 9 degrees forward available but you are only sitting on the tail. It will all change soon as the speed increases you will see the tail pop up if you do it too soon or too much but if you only do it slightly it will probably lift off all 3 same time. From what I remember Ron H. was saying it will come off all three at the same time.

I have a steeper stance but as soon as it rotates it is back to "normal", giving the 9+ and 9-. I think having more back available at the beggining is great and it gives it back to you as you need it.

If I remember hang test we had to make sure that at all stick settings and fuel pilot configurations it had to hang like 12-14 degrees nose down. I can check the numbers if you like. The second part though is that the cheekplates rotate as they are not bolted yet and will then be adjusted for I think 9 degrees with the aircraft frame level ( as if in flight) using the longerons for reference. When you are building your mast - and the rear supports you will not know how much to lean the mast back until everything is on board. You will also not set the angle on the rotorhead until you do the first part.

I remember once I brought it down to Mentone to show progress and had guessed at how far the mast would be raked back. Ron H. was there that year and we had them parked side by side. Mine looked like a cable cutter on a front of a huey. Guessing doesn't work but when you get closer you will know. Try to provide for the unknown parts. You can maybe do what I did by finding two pieces of metal that one fits tightly inside the other. You can extend it how far you want and clamp it as you are finding the setting. There is much more weight on the front points than on the rear supports so you should have no problem. Fortunately with 4130 many of the tube sizes are actually matches with the ID of other sizes so you should be just fine.

Tony, I am no engineer but I have been learning by doing. I am sure there are a lot of people who have opinions on how to do things but very few have had to go to the depth that we have in order to build this. Sometimes I think it would have been just as easy to go buy a bolt together kit and sit back and have everyone admire my beautiful pre fab kit. I would have if there were such a tractor kit but there isn't anything similiar by comparison so I have to do the best I can.

I know that to a machinist this a/c would be very easy to produce. I have had to learn machining and metal fabrication just to keep moving forward which is taking me longer but hey - we are getting a few of these done
I am sure glad to see others with the same priorities regarding gyro flying. If there is anything I can do don't hesitate to ask, just realize that I am not one of those engineers who has the full array of machine tools. This is homegrown. ( But Rich IS an engineer ) Looking forward to seeing your labor of Love. Good luck with it. jtm
 

mcbirdman

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I am posting photos for Rich at the other thread : http://www.rotaryforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=753&page=11 Regarding building progress.

Please Reply only on this thread as we want to keep the other thread "clean" as possible.

Rich will go in after these are posted and add details..... thanks jtm
 

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richard lidke

Littlewing Booster Aviat.
Joined
May 2, 2004
Messages
124
Location
Rolling Prarie, Indiana
Aircraft
Little Wing 2+2
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200
I am posting photos for Rich at the other thread : http://www.rotaryforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=753&page=11 Regarding building progress.

Please Reply only on this thread as we want to keep the other thread "clean" as possible.

Rich will go in after these are posted and add details..... thanks jtm
Been there done that Jim. And again thanks so much for your help. Appreciated again as usual.

:yo: Booster Rich. Love the picture of a "LITTLEWING FLYING' not just playing around on the ground.
 

mcbirdman

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Grand Ledge (Lansing) Michigan
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Thanks Tom and Rich, I know you both can appreciate a build. We know it isn't perfect but it does fly. We are working on the carb situation and we will get this resolved. This is a realitively small bump considering the road we have travelled so far. I have been waiting on a mikuni carb that we are going to try and put a reminder call in today.

I just got done rebuilding a 1969 bug. it needed a lot of body work including floorboards, and structural issues. I put a rebuilt 1500cc engine in it and am going to rebuild the 1600 engine that was in it. I am doing all of this because I love to learn about things and it will help me understand the capabilities of the VW more. The more I work on them the more I can appreciate the knowledge that went into them. I just got done helping on another paint job which was an old Chevelle, and a 4wd Jeep who's floorboards were shoulder high. I try to soak up all I can as I learn. So much I am interested in and so many projects that I attend to.

I took a trip down to see Rich a few weeks ago with the VW and it ran great. I put an electronic ignition into it which also controls advance. I am thinking about making a cross country trip with it to the east coast in the near future. Anyway, this is all connected in that I can use this information to figure out the LW engine. I am convinced that the bigger carb is going to feed it more air and fuel the way it needs. Some carbs for sale on VWs are in the 38-40+ range and I think I am running a 34-36 size throat as near as I can tell. Jim Holbrook is getting the needle size information from a friend who has had good results with his setup.

I will let you know if we can make any progress this winter. In the meantime I guess I am going to work on the two place and try to get the mast built up. I felt bad that business concerns have kept me busy and away from my projects this year and from running down to see Rich. I really enjoy the enthusiasm he has and it helps me get back in the build mode when I get done with the other more pressing priorities. I look forward to the future as I feel robbed from the past. However, I just got my buildings paid off last Friday and so I may have more time on my hands. Don't worry.... I am not going to spend time here defending myself or my actions day by day. :) Got other ideas to cultivate. Again, thanks for noticing Tom.:)
 
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mcbirdman

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Hit Tony,

The drive that we put on is a Grand Valley Engineering redrive. Mine is an older one and the neat thing is that all I had to do is have Rich turn down the O.D. on the crankshaft hub by .030 and it slid right on. Protrusion of the hub was exactly the same so when I installed the redrive bracket which sits on the engine ledge the pullys lined up exactly the same as required by Grand Valley as a "stock" engine. I am trying to get the carb pipes figured out now that I know that although a downdraft carb will likely give more power and less problems starting, airflow, and aesthetically, the updraft is safer and leaves more room should I put the new blower on that Steve from Great Plains is announcing.
I'll write more when I find the older build only thread of information to update. Been quite a while.....
 

WHY

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Hi James

I thought that might be the re-drive you were using, this will allow a larger prop because of the change in the prop thrust line, along with the increase in torque at the prop and a more efficient prop speed this should give you a real "kick butt " engine, at least I hope so because this is almost exactly the set up I hope to use.

Tony
 

mcbirdman

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Tony,

Yes it is the same pumped up engine from before. It needed to breathe better and this redrive allows it to go up into the powerband area. It does swing this new prop easily and it wants to go go go.....It sounds very good but then it sounded good before. It just didn't have the extra oomph that we needed.

So far it meets the minimum requirments I needed for decent performance without any further work. What I can do with carb tuning is what will bring it up to 400lbs thrust or so based on the 350 I am at. I am now swinging a 72 /43 prop I believe. We were going to see if there is too much pitch in this prop but apparently not. I think the engine should spool up further if I need it.

I gotta pull the old thread and see where I used to be at when it flew...
But Tony.... If you watch their videos of their planes flying they are jumping into the air. They are working on one that I think he said was a vw engine with a 80+ inch prop and it was going to pull well over 700-800lbs. He was trying to get it ready for a show but the idea was he wanted it to take off in a few feet....

Don't know what kind of top speed he would have but in my case, although I can't remember the actual numbers but it seemed like the chart said cruise around 82 at only 32-3400 rpm. Since I am pulling 350 at 3350 it seems believable. I think additional tuning will bring in some more.
Today I welded up an intake manifold that should work if I leave it as is but it only adapts to the Great Plains updraft intake. The intake is horizontal out of the back of the carb and then turns 90 degrees up into a cross tube that goes to both sides of the engine. I don't like how it "T"s right there. Seems like a restriction. I made an run where it has 45 degree T but it pushed the carb too far forward for the cowling. I will see if this intake costs me some power or the fact I used larger pipes will offset the difference.
 
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WHY

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James

You may well be very close to the prop performance you are seeking right now. Keep these factors in mind, you do NOT want max thrust at static condition. What you really want is last 10 to 20 percent of the throttle to gain NOTHING. This is cavitation or the equivilant of a drag racer burning his tires at the green light. Notice that once he moves a few feet and stops burning rubber and gets some traction then he just lauches down the strip. Your prop should do the same, "burn rubber" in the full throttle position, or "cavitate" but as soon ast it gets some foward motion feeding air into it, THEN it gets full traction (thrust).

Best of luck and will be watching your progress.

Tony
 

mcbirdman

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I think I understand Tony.

One thing I didn't make clear is that when you pull the choke it actually opens a small fuel port. When I tried to run it up I noticed with the O2 sensor I just installed showed the engine ran lean at higher rpms. So I know the jetting is off and it ran better when I pulled the carb a little to open the fuel port/enrichen. This is the main reason I think there is more there once I fix the mixture.

We are 500 rpm from the 3800 rpm mentioned by Valley Engineering. Only 5% increase per 100 rpm would mean 17.5lbs thrust increase or 87 lbs thrust more. They told me they expect a 2180 to pull more like 400 which is only 50 more than where I am already. Since my engine always pulled more than Great Plains lists their 2180 to pull it wouldn't surprise me if we pull more likely 437. This is only from what I am culling off all I have read or seen. This is why I am going to shoot for 400. I think it is reasonable.

Ron said he felt that 350-375 would be a respectable number for me given the weight of the machine. We are there but I want to make sure whatever we don't need is on reserve.

Tony I am thinking that going from their pull test to mine we are still short. If we have a bit of gain once we are not tied down then I am happy for that but if they can pull what I did with a smaller engine, I believe we can do better...... or not.....:Cry:

But if because of the agressive pitch it is holding me back then we will get the traction you mentioned and keep the potential for a higher cruise speed. :) That way we can take off and climb, then throttle back instead of taking all it has all the time and overheating the engine... It all sounds pretty close to me- Even if I can't get more....

Thanks for your encouragement and help again. It is appreciated. jtm
 
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magilla

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Little Rock, AR
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Jim,

good to see you back on the board. I have been busy also, and I am about ready to do taxi runs....

Tony is right - if you set up your prop for max static thrust, you will likely pull a ton, but it will act like a "climb" prop = means you will pull and climb like a bandit, but your max speed will be around, say 40-50 mph....

I have a vacuum gauge, and with my 84" x 56 prop on my freshly rebuilt 2276 motor, i can only get to 3600 RPM. I have 5-6" of vacuum left at 3600 rpm, and can move the throttle forward another 1-2", with no increase in RPM. Vacuum goes to 0. That means that once I start forward movement, the engine RPM will increase with fwd movement until it can't turn any more, maybe hitting 4000, and reaching max dynamic thrust...

Glad you decided to go with the redrive from Valley Engineering and Culver Props...

With an 84" prop, I figure I am going to be close to 450 lbs of thrust. Doing my engine break in runs the other week, the amount of thrust was unbelievable! I don't have a thrust meter or pull chain, but that wind was STRONG. I am figuring lose to 450 lbs, according to Culver Props pitch calculator. Tervmaki's site also gives similar numbers, as well as Paul Plack's modeling. Won't know until I get to mentone or Sun State and do an actual thrust test!

One thing I noticed: why did you only go with a 72" prop? With the redrive moving the prop up 5.5", you could have gone with a 76 or even 80" prop, and you would see even greater numbers!!! The thrust difference between the 80" and 84" props I had was unreal. Same pitch, different league of thrust.

I hope to have mine airborne this summer, and then make some mods. GyroRon said it best: Get it in the air, then make your mods as you see fit. otherwise, you could spend a lifetime (it's almost 2.5 years since I bought mine) making incremental changes and not get in the air....

anyway, good luck!! Keep us posted.
 
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