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Safety around propellers

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Safety around propellers

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Old 1st Jan 2019, 22:18
  #101 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Melbourne Australia
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Only slightly off topic:

I am becoming increasingly concerned at the number of "professional" pilots I see walking through the prop arcs. Any links to decent educative material relevant to the dangers of this activity gratefully received.

MJG
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 06:05
  #102 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 1998
Location: PENang, Malaysia
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MJG. The only education I got was from crusty old FSGTs at Pt Cook. If you didn't walk around the prop on your walkaround they would belt your helmet far harder than any QFI. And then occasionally, you would hear a cough and see a prop turnover with noone in the cockpit.....
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 06:31
  #103 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Fostex View Post
Swapping out students with a running engine, while safe if performed correctly (and depending on aircraft type), is not really the best practice when teaching students. It needs to be emphasised to anyone new to flying that being a pilot is not just about handling the aircraft in flight but rather all aspects of safety around the aircraft when airside. That includes the safe startup and shutdown of the engine as well as the use of mags, throttle, mixture and pitch to manage the prop. By simply turning up to a running aircraft and jumping in the student is missing a lot of the learning experience. Not a good idea in my opinion.
Exactly. That was my 'other' concern with the practice. You would loose out on all the essential stuff associated with preflighting, pre-start checks, comms with ground, shut down checks (do they also skip power checks?) and I worry that would change the way a student learns to take responsibility for the whole operation.

Last edited by double_barrel; 3rd Jan 2019 at 07:34.
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 21:13
  #104 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: West Sussex, England
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Untill I read the above discussion before Christmas I 'thought' I was careful when ground handling handling my 80 h.p. Rotax powered Rans at my strip.
It set me thinking on how I might operate more safely and wrote the following proto checklist; it's initially for discussion here - bearing in mind it's one man alone at the strip and not so complicated please that one abandons using any checks.

Precaution Treat the Propeller as Always LIVE - A handling regime.

With hot or cold engine even with both ignition 'kill' switches turned to off, turning the propeller could cause it to suddenly fire either forwards or in reverse due to a hot spot or a single 'kill' switch wiring could have an intermittent open circuit.
Rotax never-the-less require the propeller of a cold engine to be rotated forwards by hand many turns to blow crankcase oil back up into the tank to check oil level, & to ascertain there is no hydraulic lock.
Precautions :-
a) Always chock the main wheels.
b) Tie back stick.
c) Throttle closed.
d) Both Ignition switches OFF.
e) Stand on firm ground and rotate the propeller keeping one's arms, body and clothing away from its arc.
f) Pulling the a/c out of its hangar holding the propeller roots reqires equal care.
g) Once in the cockpit ready for engine start, shout "CLEAR PROP" and wait at least 7 to 10 seconds for it to register to anyone unseen outside before operating the starter..
If possible avoid post flight prop/compression checking, it is even more risky.
But, with care as above, the propeller might need turning to re-position an upwards pointing blade to clear the hangar entrance beam for pushing back inside.

Could readers kindly comment ?
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 21:37
  #105 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Newark'ish
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Originally Posted by mikehallam View Post
Untill I read the above discussion before Christmas I 'thought' I was careful when ground handling handling my 80 h.p. Rotax powered Rans at my strip.
It set me thinking on how I might operate more safely and wrote the following proto checklist; it's initially for discussion here - bearing in mind it's one man alone at the strip and not so complicated please that one abandons using any checks.

Precaution Treat the Propeller as Always LIVE - A handling regime.

With hot or cold engine even with both ignition 'kill' switches turned to off, turning the propeller could cause it to suddenly fire either forwards or in reverse due to a hot spot or a single 'kill' switch wiring could have an intermittent open circuit.
Rotax never-the-less require the propeller of a cold engine to be rotated forwards by hand many turns to blow crankcase oil back up into the tank to check oil level, & to ascertain there is no hydraulic lock.
Precautions :-
a) Always chock the main wheels.
b) Tie back stick.
c) Throttle closed.
d) Both Ignition switches OFF.
e) Stand on firm ground and rotate the propeller keeping one's arms, body and clothing away from its arc.
f) Pulling the a/c out of its hangar holding the propeller roots reqires equal care.
g) Once in the cockpit ready for engine start, shout "CLEAR PROP" and wait at least 7 to 10 seconds for it to register to anyone unseen outside before operating the starter..
If possible avoid post flight prop/compression checking, it is even more risky.
But, with care as above, the propeller might need turning to re-position an upwards pointing blade to clear the hangar entrance beam for pushing back inside.

Could readers kindly comment ?
Not strictly Ground Handling, but regular Mag Checks will reduce the risk of a faulty mag switch or wiring creeping up on you!
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 21:56
  #106 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Sydney
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My 2c - I am not overly familiar with Rotaxes but understand many are shut down by turning mags off rather than cutting mixture(?). If so, in that case you would be likely to detect a live mag on shutdown because the engine would keep running so you would know if there was an issue there. Effectively you are forced to do a live mag check every shutdown.

Whilst not impossible, I am guessing it would be pretty unlikely for a mag to cut OK on shutdown and then go live afterwards.

Also for the prop to fire you need a suitable fuel mixture available in at least one cylinder - I would assume that would be unlikely if the aircraft hadn't been recently running. If a warm engine though... I would be more cautious.

I think if you are doing the oil pull-through process you require, on a cold engine that you personally have shut down from the last flight, handling the prop would be unlikely to be a high risk.

Doesn't mean you treat props casually - ie don't stand where you could be struck if moving it.

(NB If hand swinging to start, rather than to check oil or adjust blade position, that should involve more care).

That is me personally. You need to make your own decisions though. Other's may have differing opinions.
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Old 3rd Jan 2019, 22:15
  #107 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: West Sussex, England
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Twice thanks,

And yes i) I've owned it O.K. thus for 10 years
and
ii) Post flight switch off is done each ignition in turn - no weak cut offwith the Bing carb's.

Last edited by mikehallam; 3rd Jan 2019 at 22:16. Reason: sp.
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