What's been through your prop

SandL

Active Member
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
1,394
Location
Royal Wootton Bassett... UK
Aircraft
Bensen Merlin dragon wings Rotax 532
Total Flight Time
400hrs (4,000 instructional launches) gliding, 200 fixed wing, 100 gyro
I bought my Merlin second hand so don't know it's entire history. I have noticed a nut shaped dent in my wooden prop and it got me thinking.
I know of a wrench going through a composite prop on an RAF (take off aborted) prop was useless.
So I wondered what experience the "wise old men" have had, maps?, goggles? what was the damage? what was the prop?, did it bounce up into the rotor?, if so what was the damage , how high were you ?etc.
Thanks
 

Scary Gary

Banned
Joined
Sep 21, 2007
Messages
2,482
Location
Aloha , Oregon
Aircraft
used to own 1946 Stinson & 1946 Aircoupe
Total Flight Time
500 +
Tommy threw my black Stetson cowboy hat threw the main blades of a Huey once.
 

WaspAir

Supreme Allied Gyro CFI
Joined
Oct 21, 2006
Messages
4,757
Location
Colorado front range
Aircraft
Bell 47G-3B-1 / A&S 18A / Phoebus C, etc.
Total Flight Time
stopped caring at 1000
I sucked up an AN bolt from the ramp while taxiing my J-2. You could measure the thread pitch from the gouge it made. $1100 later I had a rebuilt prop.

I worried most about the risk of cracking and losing a blade, then about imbalance, and then about aero effects.

I have seen suggestions in aviation magazines that instructors should put some loose hardware near a training airplane, to test the alertness and thoroughness of student pre-flight inspections. After my experience, I strongly object to that behavior, because of the FOD generation potential of wayward hardware bits not collected, or kicked out of the way, or otherwise unaccounted for. The military spends bundles of man-hours to keep movement areas clear, and I don't think it makes sense for civilians to clutter up ramp areas. A little bit of titanium FOD from a Continental jet is what brought down the Concorde...
 

BEN S

Active Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2007
Messages
2,328
Location
YUMA,AZ
Aircraft
Sportcopter Vortex "light"
Total Flight Time
200+
Had a creosote bush go through my prop and broke off both tips. Its mounted on the shop wall.
 

phantom

Newbie
Joined
Apr 1, 2009
Messages
1,417
Location
Eagle River
I have had a teeter hat fall into the prop while breaking in a new engine, a pair of vice grips, seagulls, several smaller birds and one salmon jumped through the prop and was cut clean in half and the part that I was able to recover was dinner that evening.

Norm
 

NoWingsAttached

Unobtainium Member
Joined
May 21, 2006
Messages
4,897
Location
Columbia, SC
Aircraft
Air Command Tandem w/ Arrow 100hp; GyroBee w/ Hirth 65hp; Air Command Tandem w/ Yamaha 150hp
Total Flight Time
>350
I was flying around with Xiu xiu when I heard a whump! behind me. I wasn't too worried, there were plenty of open spaces under us. Everything seemed OK, so I turned around to see what was going on back there. I saw one red leather glove held between her thighs. She had taken off her gloves to blow her nose and lost the other one through the prop.

A friend had just taken off when his tie-down strap got away from its flight bag and went into the prop. That made him lose control of the gyro until he reduced power and brought her down all in one piece, no issues.
 
Last edited:

phantom

Newbie
Joined
Apr 1, 2009
Messages
1,417
Location
Eagle River
I had a ski get tangeled up in my prop while testing the handleing of a gyro on skis,I don,t count as going through the prop because it stayed on the prop, while taxi testing with no rotor installed one ski got stuck in slush while the other ski kept going the gyro turned until the axel of the stuck ski broke and as the machine slid sidways it stretched the bungee until there was enough force to pull the ski out of the slush, it came into the prop like something out of a slingshot, wound up, ripped the engine off the mount, the engine went to full power and chewed up my gyro.

Norm
 

Vance

Gyroplane CFI
Joined
Oct 30, 2003
Messages
16,310
Location
Nipomo,California
Aircraft
Givens Predator
Total Flight Time
2400+ in rotorcraft
An Alternator!!!

An Alternator!!!

I had to replace the Propeller on The Predator when the alternator hit it several times. Both brackets broke and it was swinging by the wire.

I have put several small pieces of muffler through the propeller until we built one from thicker stainless.

The most comical was when I fired the engine up with my safety wire sitting on the engine. I looked like a very long slinky but did no noticeable damage to the propeller.

Usually it is FOD off the taxiway or run up area. The wind in the area combines with the wind from the propeller to stir things up a bit.

It happens often enough that part of my preflight is to inspect the propeller before every flight.

I have only had to replace the propeller once in over 1,000 hours of flying.

Thank you, Vance
 
Joined
Jun 24, 2008
Messages
445
Location
St Augustine, Fl.
Aircraft
Dominator Tandem and single
Total Flight Time
500+
Left main wheel on a Dom tandem during touch and go's. Thought we had a flat until it passed by. (What's that... is that our wheel? :) )
Warp Drive Prop struck it 3 times. No prop damage.
 

phantom

Newbie
Joined
Apr 1, 2009
Messages
1,417
Location
Eagle River
E6B, for reasons that are not known to me the sound of engines will sometimes cause salmon to leap out of the water if they are near the craft and this one jumped about 4 feet high ahead and a little to the left of me and with my speed at about 40 mph there was nothing that I could do so before the fish had time to fall back into the water I had moved under it, the nickel edged warpdrive hit it about 3 inches behind the gills, the front of the fish sank but the back was still kicking on the surface so I was able to go back and pick it up. There was no damage to the prop.

Norm
 

bmoore2156

Active Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Messages
1,005
Location
Siletz, Or
Aircraft
Converted RAF
Total Flight Time
300 hrs in my RAF
Had the carb heat air fliter (K&N) come off my exhaust and go through the prop.
No damage to the prop but it threw it into the radiator causing a big leak. I am just glad we turned around and went back to the airport after feeling a soft "thud". We made it back in time to save the engine.
 

SandL

Active Member
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
1,394
Location
Royal Wootton Bassett... UK
Aircraft
Bensen Merlin dragon wings Rotax 532
Total Flight Time
400hrs (4,000 instructional launches) gliding, 200 fixed wing, 100 gyro
Yes I agree air is good, mosquitoes are good, fingers and limbs are bad.

Has anyone had an object go through the prop then up into the rotor ? Fish, Ostrich, ... 'roo (for you birdy), wrench or air filter or glove... anything ?
 

Vance

Gyroplane CFI
Joined
Oct 30, 2003
Messages
16,310
Location
Nipomo,California
Aircraft
Givens Predator
Total Flight Time
2400+ in rotorcraft
A spring impression in the Rotorblade.

A spring impression in the Rotorblade.

I used to train in a SparrowHawk that had a spring shaped ding in the rotor blade because a throttle spring had gone through the prop and flung into the rotor with considerable velocity.

I always check the helmet strap when I am taking a stranger for a ride because I feel a helmet going through the propeller could kill us for just that reason.

I also check for loose objects in their pockets and make sure their camera is secured to their body somehow.

Ed dropped the lens off her camera once but fortunately it missed the propeller.

Thank you, Vance
 
Top