Startup Question

Heliboy

Newbie
Joined
Oct 23, 2014
Messages
39
Location
Wilmington NC
I got my Helicycle about two weeks ago now and only flew it once due to time. (It flew like a dream)

Long story short the gentleman that delivered it to me (friend of owner) did the start ups . I attempted a few but was a bit nervous of a ' hot start' so a bit timid . Well this weekend will be my first time back to the hangar in two weeks to work on my startup procedure.

I know it happens fast " Starter / Off Starter / Press Ignitor (wait for 'poof'). Back on Starter and fuel pump.

I have the procedure but in my first attempts I never really heard a ' poof ' which I know is the signal that the flame has lit and time to add fuel and starter.

Instead of listening for the ' poof ' is there any certain amount of time (say 1 ,2 , 3 , 4 seconds) to expect the ' poof '.

I think its just going to take some trial and error runs like anything else but wanted to get some input before I head out tomorrow to begin some start ups.

I always appreciate you guys input.

Thanks
 

Heliboy

Newbie
Joined
Oct 23, 2014
Messages
39
Location
Wilmington NC
To break it down more clearly my specific question is : Can you assume after 3-4 seconds of the Excitor ticking : that the ' poof ' has occured and get back on Starter / Main Fuel Pump ?
 

bryancobb

Junior Member
Joined
Aug 2, 2010
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5,008
Location
Cartersville, GA
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Owned Brantly B-2b/Fly Kitfox III/Mini-500b
Total Flight Time
1350
Do you not have a TOT instrument? When the fire lights, that can be seen clearly on the TOT gauge.

Generally, turbines experience "hot-starts" if the spinning donut of air inside is touching the inside wall of the canister. The only way you can insure this donut of air is correctly suspended in space is to have a very powerful battery and do not introduce fuel and spark until the turbine is "spooled-up" to an adequate RPM to create the swirl of air that makes up the donut.

No, you cannot ASSUME start has occurred after 3-4 sec. Maybe fuel is not being sprayed in and you don`t know it.

I am not experienced in HC startups but I would probably start it while standing outside for several reasons. I`d do a visual look after start to check for leaks/fires, etc., and then get in.
 

StanFoster

Active Member
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Nov 16, 2003
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16,895
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Paxton, Il
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Helicycle N360SF
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Heliboy- I have started my T-62 over 400 times. I ALWAYS heard a wwhhhoomppphhh when it lit off.

A few times when my batteries were old, they would not spool up the turbine to the critical rpm that is self sustaining and the fuel finishes the start. That's when my exhaust temps start rising and I would shut the fuel off , and get the batteries either recharged or replaced.

I had dual Odyssey 680 batteries. Seems my starting techniques would get me about 200 starts before needing new batteries. Perhaps if I were sharper, I could have gotten more out of my batteries, but 200 starts was fine with me.
 

Heliboy

Newbie
Joined
Oct 23, 2014
Messages
39
Location
Wilmington NC
Bryn and Stan ,
I cant thank you enough for each of your input.

I have bad news and good news. Bad news first: I worked all day on the fixing up the new hangar and rolled the Heli out on its new concrete slab to soak up some sun. I proscrastinated all morning and night. I even spit shined some parts of her.

I logged in around 7 pm after dark and saw Bryan's comment about standing outside which made alot of sense : and then visualized Stan's (wwhhhoomppphhh) . I finally said screw it and turned the spotlight on around 8:30 PM EST. Hit Starter / Off Starter : On Excitor and finally heard (wwhhhoomppphhh) then back on Starter and Main Fuel. Took it up to 45000 RPM and governor took over.

I got in : engaged the blades and ran it for almost 45 minutes just acquanting myself and taking it in. There is really nothing like listening to both the turbine and blades flapping on this machine.

My hangar that I build is about an hour away (fortunately) or I would never get anything done. Its a weekend hobby. So I will go back tomorrow on Sunday with a little more confidence in my startup now this one is behind me.

Thanks again Bryan and Stan ! Stan I'm at least 399 startups behind you but its one startup I wont forget.

I really appreciate this forum tremendously.

Take care you guys !
 

bryancobb

Junior Member
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Aug 2, 2010
Messages
5,008
Location
Cartersville, GA
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Owned Brantly B-2b/Fly Kitfox III/Mini-500b
Total Flight Time
1350
I forgot to mention, the Army ALWAYS had one crewmember standby with a woking 2A10BC Halon fire extenguisher during startup.

That is another reason for standing outside for start. Just make sure to put the extinguisher in the hangar so you don`t risk hitting it with the tail rotor when taking off or landing.
 

Heliboy

Newbie
Joined
Oct 23, 2014
Messages
39
Location
Wilmington NC
Bryan
Went out today for 2nd time to practice startups and do some hovering . I started it up again from the outside again today with success and forsee at least for the short term to continue that process. I find it much easier to hear what I'm looking for from that position. I also found myself doing a walk around after it was at idle RPM.

Your mention of fire extinguisher is interesting timing. My dad which has been a big supporter of my helicopter obsession since I was about 10 years old (35 years ago) brought a fire extinguisher out to the hangar today and said (Just in case).

Great minds think alike so thank you for reinforcing that. Just like anything else I'm sure it rarely to never happens; but you never know.

Thanks again!
 
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