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Sunday, April 26, 2009

Broken But Torii Still Flies

Salam all,

I had some issue with Torii tendency leaning to left and moving forward during hover before.

It was Saturday, checked the center gravity, it was a bit off, but not that much. I decided to adjust the swash plate to make Torii stablized during hover. Doing this, I will able to fly Torii as usual, however I will not be able to try inverted flight on Torii. Center gravity setup is very important for inverted hover, since the 'drift compensation' needed will be reversed and since I have not done it, I do not wan't to take any risk.

Ok. So refering to thre previous setup for hover flight, I adjusted the swash plate for idle-up mode. Also, I have reconnect the whole of tail boom, just to reconfirm that the tail gear was connected firmly. I was afraid that from the last bouncing and aborted take-off (during the night test) has somehow loosen the assembly.

At about 12.00 noon, I drive Torii to the PH flying field 2. There was nobody else, other flier may have done their flights or they are doing it at the other field. Regardless, I proceed to unload Torii and the equipments from my car.
From Remote Control Helicopter - 2009

Looking around, I have the big field for my self and Torii ha ha ha. Hmm... so what? So I filled up the tank for the Nitro fuel. :) Before I filled up the fuel, noticed that there are lots of foreign dust at the fuel pump filter. Cleared it before I proceed.

From Remote Control Helicopter - 2009

From Remote Control Helicopter - 2009

Starting up the engine. It has been 2 weeks (what?, 2 weeks) I have not started Torii's engine. I hoping for the best, starting the engine without any problem, hoping for the luck at my side! Plugged in the glow heater, started to press the starter switch. It rotated a bit at first, then it won't any more! Ahh looks like stucked or the engine shaft was too heavy to be rotated. Tried a few times. Oh, my glow plug heater broken again! This is the third time it broken, I have glued it for each time and able to use it, and now it is broken again! Arghhh.

If I have other flier friends around, I can ask to try their starter (and glow heater as well), it could be due to my starter or weak battery, just like Torri's previous flight. Nope, can't hope for others to help. Decided to flush the engine first. Took out the Canopy, and using the number 8 socket driver I took out the glow plug. Then I ran the starter with fuel line closed, yes, the engine shaft rotated smoothly. After that, with fuel line open, good shaft rotation as well. So, I put back the glow plug, connected the glow heater and now the engine started nicely! - Remember with the broken glow heater. Alhamdulillah.

After the engine started, I adjusted the throttle trim to make sure the engine is stable at the idle. I bring Torri to a bigger empty space for take off (since I did the engine start up under tree shades). Started to increase the throttle while checking the response on other controls. Everything was good, lifted off successfully. Put into hover and checked the controls again. Yes, everything was just fine, but noticed that Torii was tempting of moving forward. Then I changed to idle-up mode, the behaviour is the same. Did some trim adjustment for that. Tried some climb and decend movement, then I brought Torii to land (of course after change back the flight mode to normal). Checked the engine temprature, it a bit hotter than what I want, so I turned the High Speed Niddle (HSN) 2 clicks counter clockwise. At this time I have utilized about half of the fuel in the tank.

Than I started to increase the throttle again. I can see that the vertical tail fin was touching the ground. There was some vibration and movement at the tail when spooling up the main rotor, and it has broke the vertical tail fin!! I glued the fin quite sometimes ago, I was broken during the last Torii crash, now it broken again. I was calculating the risk, should I go ahead to take off or abort it. The vertical fin is very usefull to protect tail rotor from hitting the ground during take off, landing or crash. Well, I figured I am carefull enough I can make sure that the tail rotor won't touch the ground. So, I continue to increase the throttle while putting a bit of forward control to make sure the tail will be up first during the take off.

Yes, the lift off was successfull, I have Torii into hover without any problem. I continue with figure 8 flights at about 20 to 30 feet heights. Then I continue to try stall turns, but was not able to do a proper one. The sky was really bright, I did not wear my sun glasses. Also, I did not feel the Torii was stable enough. At one time it was really tempted to move forward where I need to pull back the foward stick to stop it from doing do, and at the other time/side it was not going forward unless I really push the stick forward. Well, I don't have the time and mood to figure out what was the actual reason, I could be due to Torii center of gravity or simply due to the current wind speed and direction at that moment.

Anyhow, I was not much fuel left in the tank. I bring it to hover in front of me to reconfirm the fuel level. Then I did some horizontal left and right flight, few times. Remember that I need to make sure tail rotor clearence during landing? Yes, with fuel just finish at the main tank I started to slowly bring Torri down, hovering at very low, as low as 4 inch from the ground while ensuring the tail was cleared. Landed Torri safely while still have fuel about half of the header tank.
From Remote Control Helicopter - 2009

Next, I'm thinking to get the proper part replacment for these 2 broken items. I had so many hassel because of them. Well I might, or might not get the replacement, will see.

Overall, the flying session was very successfull. Alhamdulillah.



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