Stan Question: Safety Cable Kit Question

Heliboy

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Stan
After reading previous post from years back you had developed a new safety kit for the landing gear . Is that something you still have available for sale?
 

Heliboy

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Stan
Another question because I wasnt following the forum closely years back.

You had stated you learned something from your flameout and hopefully how to prevent another. What was the specifics of what you learned to lessen the likelihood of a flameout caused by pilot input.

(This is the thread I pulled ): I think this thread has gone full circle, and I feel there was nothing that the machine did to let me down. This is the last time here I am going to repeat myself, I totally let euphoria run my collective control. We all have had "dumb ass" moments, and that moment was mine. I feel I don't have very many of those moments, and I sure won't repeat this one. I feel I was given the chance to redeem myself, and that I did. I am waiting for my MFS coming configured for NO . This had nothing to do with this flameout a week ago, but is number 1 priority to almost completely prevent another flameout due to. MFS or power running it failure. Thanks for all the comments$ Sure did get a variety. Stan
 

Heliboy

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Stan: Found another quote you made in an old post that from a learning standpoint would be helpful to understand. We learn from each other. What was the cause of your two flameouts?

Outside of two flameouts which the cause was figured out....mine flew very dependably
 

StanFoster

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Heliboy- Both flameouts had one thing in common which I had only done twice...causing a flameout both times. That was pulling lots of collective, pulling max power doing so, then dropping the collective suddenly. I called Doug Schwochert and he diagnosed it over the phone.

Doug is the MAN! It was the low idle screw set to low. When the turbine under lots of load suddenly drops the load, the fuel control lever snaps back to the fuel stop. Mine was too low and it just didn't have enough fuel keeping the turbine lit.

I tried several times over the runway after I adjusted it, had lots of collective and then dumped the collective....no problems. I flew another 4 years with no issues.

I did install some micro switches running yellow warning lights in my dash . One came on when the fuel control lever was close to 90% max, and the second one came on when the fuel control lever hit its upper stop

That told Stan not to pull any more collective as the fuel control was giving all she had.

I absolutely loved that and once in awhile in an aggressive takeoff, one light would come on, and I wouldn't pull anymore collective. I also had a laser beam on my collective that went to a calibrated rotor blade pitch degree strip alongside my door. I could tell within a 1/4 degree what degree of pitch my blades are at from 7 degrees thru 16 degrees.

I don't have any more safety cables, but I would have collapsed my landing gear with that first flameout. I did a 40 mph run on landing in grass, and you can see a slight twist in the yokes holding the landing gear. It would have collapsed and totaled my machine. The video is on YouTube by the way..and its posted here on the forum.
 

Heliboy

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Stan : This is priceless information. I know that I ask alot of questions but if you dont ask questions you dont get answers. I certainly hate that you had such an experience (twice) but its definitely something we can all learn by. I certainly have.

As being very (VERY) new to my Helicycle (my first startup was on Saturday) : how would I know that my low idle screw is set to the appropriate setting to prevent such an occurence? Ideally we simply we try to not make such abrupt collective input but from a mechanical standpoint I would be curious to know 1) the location of the low idle screw 2) what setting is appropriate 3) why is the new setting you changed too not the recommended following a factory checkout.

My ship had a previous owner who I know took good care of it: but its always good to have up to date information. I realize that not building your own ship brings about not having the same intimate detail of knowledge as one who built them from the ground up. (Therefore alot more questions about certain mechanical locations ).

I had to build my hangar in a location that required somewhat of a max power takeoff and steep approaches which neither did I like mentally or mechanically. Your response helped verify my concerns. I have some tree guys coming in tomorrow to knock down a couple of tall trees that will allow more smooth (less steep) operation taking off and landing.
 
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StanFoster

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Heliboy- Doug had me keep raising the bottom fuel control stop, until .....shutting the governor off didn't result in any rpm drop....he called that the sweet spot. Once that was found, I was to lower the screw a 1/4 turn. If Doug is reading this, he is more than welcome to add or correct what my memory is struggling with.

You will love flying your Helicycle. I had other reasons to sell mine, but none was because of mechanical issues. It was the most reliable and least time to maintain of any rotorcraft I have
 

Heliboy

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Stan: I appreciate your very thorough answers to all my questions. Its a great help !

My plan is to call Doug when the annual is due early next year and set up a trip for him to come out and go through my first annual with me . That way we can cover everything from top to bottom and I can ask away with questions . Right now I'm only hovering and just getting acquantied with things and getting my landing areas cleared and nicely prepared.

Again ; Thank you very much!
 

StanFoster

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Your welcome. Ask anything you want, I am below average on turbine knowledge, but have some little tidbits still rattling around.
 

500e

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Stan was there a mod on the fuel relay as well ??
 

StanFoster

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500- I am not sure of your question. I modified the fuel transfer method if that is what you are referring to. I also changed the fuel shutoff to not shut the fuel off if there was a power interruption.
 

Heliboy

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I reached out to a friend with my question about the low idle screw location and adjustment. He is one of the Helicycle guru's that knows just about everthing there is to know.

I believe its important to learn about these issues when someone brings them up to ensure there is nothing to be concerned about. He was nice enough to take a fuel control that he had and make me a short video explaining what Stan was talking about regarding the low idle screw. I thought I would post the video link in case others may want to learn as well.

This short video was a great help for me as a novice with little knowledge of the turbine engine:
https://youtu.be/tJ2Sr07XAJY
 

Rotor Kop

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I reached out to a friend with my question about the low idle screw location and adjustment. He is one of the Helicycle guru's that knows just about everthing there is to know.


This short video was a great help for me as a novice with little knowledge of the turbine engine:
https://youtu.be/tJ2Sr07XAJY
Great video thank you! I am unfortunately one of those guys who has/had a dud Helicycle. It has been 3 months trying to get it checked out to fly but as they inspect the more problems they find. I have replaced a lot of parts the last 3 months and even spent $1800 sending my fuel control back to the factory because it was not working (considering that this Helicycle has never flown yet). The main reason for my post is my concern that there still seem to be governor issues with helicycles!! A friend of mine just crashed his as he was busy with the checkout, in that when he entered a quickstop the turbine overspeed and the engine cut - the damage was significant and the Helicycle cost about $20000 to repair. The problem is still there and the governor is not keeping the speed contant but allows large under and overspeeding with power changes. I am now really concerned that this will happen with mine. Stan or anyone else who has good experience on these things care to comment or make suggestions?

Edited to add* my turbine literally exploded on its 3rd attemp to start with the reconditioned fuel control. The entire hot section of the turbine blew off and flew about 100 yards - fortunately no one was killed although 2 people where injured by metal pices from the housing that literally blew into hundreds of pieces and chunks! Hence my agitation and dissatisfaction so far with the Helicycle. I am the only one who just keeps forking out money - everyone else just throws their hands in the air and says "I don't know - never seen it before". Will try put some pics of turbine on here.
EDITED to add Thjat Blake has been of great help to try and resolve these problems and from what he says it may well no tbe the fuel control but the motor that drives the fuel arm - this part was not sent for testing as it does the normal full open and full closed movement when the governor is put on. Lets see what transpires after Saturday!
 
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StanFoster

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Rotor Kop- Sorry to hear you not getting the work you paid for on your fuel controller. Doug Schwochert is the go to guy on the Helicycle, especially the turbine.

After my initial two flameouts and being able to fly it home afterwards, I feel fortunate to have 4 years of the most awesome machine I ever flew. You will experience this I am sure!

However, after about 2 years, bugs of doubt from what I did not know was going on.....started taking over my comfort level, and when I started thanking God everytime my skids touched down from an awesome uneventful flight, I started getting 2nd thoughts on exposing myself to so much fun while having a fair amount of risk. My gut feeling told me to walk away while I was ahead. I haven't regretted it at all, but also I am so grateful to have experienced such a powerful, s-m-o-o-t-h and most reliable machine. I had posted I was getting complacent with it, and that is not good. I needed some trouble once in awhile I guess. So my best ADM was to sell it. I was very meticulous with my preflights the first two years, but my complacency won out. I was not the pilot most said I was.....just being brutally honest. I would still be flying my Helicycle, but my decision to quit was the best for myself and my family.
 
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Rotor Kop

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Stan that is exactly how i am feeling currently and I have not even sat in a helicycle with its rotors turning yet. I am now almost convinced that my turbine exploded due to the faulty fuel control (or motor) which can be confirmed in this guys VERY informative and factual articles on his website below. He makes a few statements out of one of his articles below which should prove that my repaired fuel control (motor) probably was the main factor that my turbine oversped and exploded, BUT there could also have been a potentiator that was fully open during startup along with the faulty motor on the fuel control??;

"Solar T-62T-32 ECU Pro's and Con's
Many experimental aircraft, especially rotorcraft, utilise the Solar T-62T-32 engine as their
primary power plant. The engine itself can be considered robust and reliable, yet there's
the inconvenience that its fuel control unit (FCU) isn't equipped with a mechanical
(flyweight) governor but requires an electronic governing system.
Well, here are my two (euro...)cents of information regarding ECU operation and possible
malfunction.
1. A severe overspeed (or failure of a single channel engine RPM pickup) is the most
severe malfunction a pilot may encounter. Either way, an improper, or uncertain RPM
reading to the ECU is always a clear indication for a shutdown of the engine. If the engine,
for any reason, actually overspeeds, the result of an uncontained disintegration of the
rotating assembly of a turbine engine is always more dangerous than a forced
autorotation.
If the engine RPM signal to the ECU (in case of an electronically controlled engine like the
Solar T-62T-32) is interrupted, there's no way to control RPM or keep the engine from
overspeeding. In this situation, forget about manually controlling the engine if there isn't a
mechanical (flyweight) backup device (which isn't standard on the SOALRs that we love
so much -- for good reasone I have to say).
2. If you are worried about the main fuel shutoff valve of the Solar T32-T62 engine, forget
it. The main fuel valve is one of the safest devices of this engine's fuel control unit. If you
want to worry, then rather think about the flexible wires inside the torque motor that
connect its (mobile) armature to the external socket. Even though these wires are of
reasonably high quality (meaning very thin individual strands), the insulation may solidify
and cause damage to the strands. Every time I get my hands on a Solar T62-T32, one of
the first things I do is replacing the flexible wires inside the torque motor with high quality
measurement equipment wires of approximately the same cross-section. Also, when
converting a T62 to experimental aviation usage, always replace the original wiring loom, if
possible also use new connectors!
3. I agree that solely an electronic contol of the engine RPM is only second best, but if
done properly, it's pretty good anyway. In the specific case of the Solar T-62T-32, it is
mandatory to check the return spring of the torque motor for condition and especially
corrosion during EVERY pre-flight check. As long as this spring is intact as well as the
torque motor itself (including the wires), the system is a very safe and reliable,
configuration.
4. Electrical supply to the ECU / Governor. This is the single weak point (in standard
installations) that can cause the engine to fail. Especially, since usually the electrical
supply is shared among many devices on a typical helicopter. There's a considerable
amount of wiring involved and then there's the question to put a fuse into the ECU supply
or not. All this may fail, wires may fray and cause shorts and so on. Yet, there's a simple
way to solve this problem, and that's adding a backup battery only for the ECU, located in
close proximity of the ECU. Since the current consumption of the ECU and engine, once
running, is reasonably low (about 2 amps), this backup battery wouldn't need to be big and
heavy. Use decouplig diodes and you should be fine.
5. In order to control engine RPM, you need to record engine RPM and nothing else. In
case of a single shaft engine, compressor delivery pressure will vary considerably during
load changes, even if the engine is running at the same speed all the time. Also, it
depends on atmospheric conditions. So any other input to the ECU than RPM is an
improper replacement. Of course, manual control may be an option for an experienced
pilot. But if he'll react fast enough in case of an ECU failure to prevent the engine from
flaming out is another question.
So im my opinion the clue from all this is quite simple: Do the installation as accurate as
possible, double-check everything. Make sure you use the proper tools and techniques
when doing electrical installations. Add an electrical back-up power supply system to the
engine control circuitry. Adjust the hydromechanical fuel control unit properly. Do a proper
pre-flight check before each start that includes testing the engine back-up systems and a
visual inspection of the torque motor return spring. And then, probably the most important
single thing: Practice autorotations so you know how your machine will behave in case of
an engine failure!
 
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StanFoster

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Rotor Kop- That was another thing I wanted, a mechanical governor like Doug Schwochert has. I did have the extra battery, and its power was all separated from the main electrical system by diodes.

Reading stuff like this while owning and flying my Helicycle made me realize the more I learned, the more I realized there was more I didn't know. I soon came to the conclusion that I was not qualified to be a competent Helicycle pilot. Some people are but I was not in that group, and so the underlying discomfort level while flying it. But the euphoria over rode that doubt cause it is such an amazing machine. It let me experience everything from 0 - 120 mph flight. Though it had a nasty kerosene appetite, it was worth it. I wish everyone could experience what one flight was like.
That article you posted further shows to me I am better off a surface dweller!
 
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birdy

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Bloodyell RK, there i was thinkn that a turbine was more reliable than a 912, haven only one spinny bit, but it seems the elictronic monster has infected them as well.
Oh well, guess ill just have to stick with the trusty rotax. :) :) ;)
 

Rotor Kop

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I agree birdy - I feel MUCH safer around a piston now. You will not believe the sound and the damage of that explosion :Cry::Cry:
I replied to your last message with the video links but for some reason those message have been deleted from my inbox :der: Did you get my message about installing a siren like we do here on all our game capture helicopters to assist in getting those pesky animals out of thick bush or just to get them going along again?
 

birdy

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Yeh, haven sumthn normaly do,n 60 odd thou, over speed to wotever it takes it to explode dont sound much like a fun thing to have bolted to the ass end of ya choppy.

No, never got any message, started thinkn you was sum undercover dud stalkn me.
Iv tried sirens and other noise maken things, but as in the vid, they listen wen i talk, nicely. ;)

Besides, noise only upsets the good critters, and tends to pissoff the naughty ones, and make them naughterer.
 

Rotor Kop

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It seems i may have spoken to soon about the fuel control possibly not being repaired. We need to do some checks on the motor part of the fuel control as this was not sent. Anyway lets see what happens on Saturday whether it is it or not.
 
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