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Old 01-18-2007, 10:22 PM   #1
Racer944
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Default Engine plate for pull starter mount - upside down OK??

Hi Guys;

I have been following threads recently about pull-starters coming loose when being used, the general recommendation is to pull the cord towards the tail thereby casuing the unit to rotate in the direction that keeps it tight to the heli.

Here is my issue: I recently purchased an already assembled Spectra G with very few flying hours, and it would appear to have the secondary engine plate (the one with the key holes for the starter) installed upside down. That is to say that my pull start engages the key holes and tightens on by rotating it counter-clockwise (looking from bottom) rather than clockwise. Does anyone know if having the plate mounted in this manner could cause any issues or has any drawbacks?

Having it mounted in this manner does have the advantage in that I can pull start my engine straight out from the right side without it coming loose. Seems to me this is might be the it actually should be mounted in order to give you the best pull without the unit loosening...

Thoughts and opinions are welcomed as I don't really want to change my setup unless there is a good reason to do so...

Cheers;
Eric
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Old 01-19-2007, 04:57 AM   #2
brunobl
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Eric, looking at the geometry of the pull-starter cord output (the pic somewhere down the "first flight today" thread is good for this), I feel that pulling straight out from the heli will not introduce a CCW (viewed from below) twist to the pull-starter case. At most, it seems to me that pulling straight out would not introduce any twist at all, which may be why it is working with your setup if the secondary plate is in fact upside down. OTOH a pull more oriented to the back should actively help avoid it commiing off (with the plate in the right orientation).

As for any drawbacks to your setup (I'm very new to the Spectra, just completed the kit and started the first flights), one that comes to mind from having the plate inverted is that if you are forced to pull straight out every time, then there may be some premature wear on the starter cord since it comes out of the case (and is swiftly pulled) at a right angle to its exit, as opposed to an alligned exit if pulling to the back. Maybe you should expect an earlier starter cord replacement doing it this way. Let's see if experienced Spectra users have other opinions too.

I should mention that my original dificulties with the starter comming off during start was a result from my own failure to correctly set the right tension to the four mounting bolts. All is well now, and rbort's tip of pulling to the back was also a big boost to making things easier.
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Old 01-19-2007, 10:33 AM   #3
Racer944
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Hi Bruno;

When mine is mounted and ready to pull its actually at about a 45 degree angle so you are right in that if you do pull straight out, the cord does exit at an angle and could wear out sooner.

I'm pretty sure though that if you mount the plate in the correct orientation and pull towards the back parallel to the tail, that the starter cord will also have a bit of an angle so there may be cord wear in both methods, but probably slightly more in my case...

I do also hope that we get some comments from the more experinced folks as I am basically using best judgement only at this point with no practical experience to back what I'm saying and I really don't wat to disassembel my bird if I don't really need to...

Cheers;
Eric

P.S. Congrats on your first flights by the way!!
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Old 01-19-2007, 04:36 PM   #4
brunobl
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Quote:
I do also hope that we get some comments from the more experinced folks
Ditto.

You know, we are a small group at my local flying field and I am the only one who is attempting to fly a gasser heli there (not to mention the Spectra).

The other guys wached my first flights with interest, but there was not really any help they could offer. In my Raptor days everyone at the field always had something to say, there was raptortechnique.com with its wealth of model-specific info and there were also some extremely busy internet forums dedicated to that heli. I now feel I am back to learning very basic things (and going it alone), taking a little step at a time, discovering this new world of gas-powered helis.

That is why I highly regard the "been there, done that" kind of opinion. Don't we all learn from each others' experiences.

Quote:
P.S. Congrats on your first flights by the way!!
Thanks! :mrgreen:
Those three, 10-minute flights radically changed my relation with my new Spectra: I had high hopes for it of course, but now it is something that in fact flies. A big question mark was removed from the top of the heli. It must be that much lighter now, haha!

Good luck with yours. There is a lot of fun comming your way.
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Miniature Aircraft USA Spectra-G, Zenoah 231 drinking 100LL AVGAS, AR7000, GY401, Jewel on-board generator
Align T-Rex 450SE V2 with torque tube TR drive mod, AR6100E, GY401
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Old 01-21-2007, 09:51 AM   #5
rbort
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I went down to the basement and studied my helicopter to figure out what you are seeing on yours. If you plate is upside down then your starter when enguaged can be with the chord exiting from under the muffler or can be with the chord exiting from the carb side -- on the muffler side more centered, on the carb side a couple of degrees less than the way it would be it the plate was in the right orientation.

Either way, from the muffler side when you pull the chord is dragging on the side of the aluminum chord outlet and its going to wear the chord quicker. I don't see it tightening the starter either so over time as things wear in a little bit its going to start popping off on you.

From the carb side its better chord wise and you would pull towards the tail but it will be loosening the starter as it enguages the wrong direction and in no time its going to be flying out from under there as you pull.

I know its a pain to take apart the whole machine to flip it around, so maybe on your next scheduled maintenance I would look into doing that.

Bruno:

You did install the 16oz tank up front right? If so you can get 15 minutes flight easy without fear of running out of gas. I fly mine that long every time unless maybe you are still flying nitro flight times. Gassers do fly longer on less fuel and over time they pay for themselves in nitro fuel savings costs.

Enjoy both of you guys!

-=>Raja.
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Old 01-21-2007, 05:40 PM   #6
brunobl
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Thanks for chiming in Raja!
Quote:
Bruno:

You did install the 16oz tank up front right?
Yes I did.

And, since I am running quite rich during run-in (10 flights), I also left the original tank. I will probably not keep the two-tank configuration after the run-in period when the engine gets better fuel economy. When the time comes I might remove the small original tank (that is next to the engine) and stay with just the 16oz one under the radio tray.
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Miniature Aircraft USA Spectra-G, Zenoah 231 drinking 100LL AVGAS, AR7000, GY401, Jewel on-board generator
Align T-Rex 450SE V2 with torque tube TR drive mod, AR6100E, GY401
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