Anyone ever use a dial indicator to level the swash plate? - HeliFreak
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:02 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Anyone ever use a dial indicator to level the swash plate?

Just an idea I had, since I have access to a ton of minute measuring instruments. Getting ready to do a complete dis-assembly and proper set up on my 450 3d, just to verify the proper setup. Also because we are not expecting flying weather here in MI this weekend.
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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There is so much slop even in a good machine it doesn't make any sense to bother. And your resolution of adjustment is pretty coarse anyways. Find something more productive to do with your itch
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
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LOL ok!!!
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:35 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I have performed it before with a caliper, measuring from the top of the frame to the bottom of the swash. Front, back, and both sides. Did seem to work fairly well, but I have to admit, I usually eyeball it from the front (or back) and from one side while giving both full positive and negative collective slowly. I have a swash levelling tool for the nitros, but have not purchased one yet for the 450s.
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Old 03-01-2012, 09:47 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I've never needed a separate leveling tool. There are so many methods available that don't require the tool. Some examples:

- With the B450, go mid stick and the washout arms should be level. Just ensure they stay level throughout the entire revolution of the head.

or

- Measure the pitch on a blade, and ensure that it is the exact same pitch for an entire revolution.

or

-zip tie around the main shaft. As you rotate the shaft, the distance from the zip tie end to the swash should remain constant.

or

-eyeball it

or.


I think you get the idea..
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Old 01-14-2017, 12:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2001rotax800 View Post
Just an idea I had, since I have access to a ton of minute measuring instruments. Getting ready to do a complete dis-assembly and proper set up on my 450 3d, just to verify the proper setup. Also because we are not expecting flying weather here in MI this weekend.
I thought I was the only one. In my opinion, the dial indicator is the easiest way to level your swash. Actually, the term "level" is a misnomer, as what you want to do is make the swash perpendicular to the main shaft.

I don't believe that there is a more accurate way to do this than the dial indicator. You don't have to take the head off. In fact you need the head on.

I don't have a pic of my setup and probably wouldn't show what I'm using at this point. The "bracket" I'm using is really ugly, but it works fine. I will eventually make something pretty.

Do you need to get your swash perfect. I guess not as the standard "Leveling" tool seems to get people by just fine. Myself, since I had an extra indicator in my tool box it seemed like a no brainer. Not to mention the fact that you keep the head on and it's just plain simple.

The real beauty is that you KNOW beyond a shadow of a doubt where your swash is. There's no wondering about it. I keep my swashes perpendicular to within .001-.002. (one or two thousandths of an inch.)

Since it can be done, and done more easily than a slide on the main shaft leveling tool, why not right?

You just mount the indicator on the head. Put the probe on a heli blade preferably at the side most off center (it doesn't really matter much as long as you're close to an edge off center.) and turn the rotor a full turn. Write down or just remember which servo has the most deflection and adjust it accordingly. Do this to one or all three, or four servos until a full turn of the rotor leaves you with the least possible deflection and you're golden.(Remember, this does not get your blades at zero pitch. That's a whole different thing. I only say this for folks like myself that confuse easily)

Lastly, it's much, much, much easier to do this if you have turnbuckles on your swash. Without them you may not be able to "Zero" the swash. In other words, with turnbuckles, you can literally adjust your swash so that you have it PERFECTLY perpendicular to the main shaft. ( You would be able however to get it very close to perfect. )

In my mind you may as well do this as it actually stops your head from moving the blades unnecessarily. I.E., why would you "need" your blades to pivot up and down while your spooling up on the ground? You don't of course. You only "need" the blades to move via the feathering shafts when you want to move forward, backward, left, or right.

What I'm saying is that with any other method of swash "leveling", you're causing your blades to pivot on their feathering shafts unnecessarily. Can you notice? Probably not. Unless it's really bad but once again, why wouldn't you use a super easy method? Other than the cost of the indicator that is. And a way to mount it. I've thought of coming up with a universal holder and inexpensive indicator combo, but I thought no one would buy it given that you do a fair job with a two dollar tool. (But not perfect)

I will guarantee this method as THE MOST ACCURATE POSSIBLE WAY TO ADJUST YOUR SWASH. It is simply not possible to get it any more accurate.
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Old 01-14-2017, 01:36 PM   #7 (permalink)
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You mean like this? It was done over 10 years ago.

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Old 01-14-2017, 01:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I use something stupid-simple. I hold a piece of solder to the head with a clothespin. That way I don't have to disassemble the head or even take the blades off.
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Old 01-14-2017, 02:38 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I've never even thought to use my dial on the swash but now that it has been mentioned I will have to give it a try. I have used one in conjunction with a lathe to straighten out shafts after a crash though and it works quite well.
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