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The Danger of Hand Swinging the prop in modern aircraft

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The Danger of Hand Swinging the prop in modern aircraft

Old 10th Nov 2019, 10:34
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The Danger of Hand Swinging the prop in modern aircraft

Self explanatory. Not sure of the date of this CASA video but every student and flying instructor should watch it - that includes instructor course candidates. Hand swinging is dangerous at the best of times. if the aircraft will not start due to a flat battery then replace the battery rather than cutting corners and hand swinging. The point about losing all the electrics in flight after hang swinging with a flat battery is a good one. The video mentions remote areas. Too many occasions occur where commercial pressures have pilots hand swinging at flying schools.


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Old 10th Nov 2019, 11:24
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Centaurus
When I click on that video link it seems to not be about swinging prop.
This one, from 2012, does.

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Old 10th Nov 2019, 12:04
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Hand starting aeroplanes is as safe as you make it. The reason for hand starting need to be considered and not all aeroplane types are suitable. Both the person starting and the pilot operating the controls need to be properly trained, understand the process and brief the exercise.
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Old 10th Nov 2019, 14:49
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Most aircraft these days will prohibit ifr flight after a hand swing. If you're vfr, just remember to count your fingers after a hand swing start...
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Old 10th Nov 2019, 19:21
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Hand swinging is dangerous at the best of times.
Now in all your long career Centaurus, have you never flown a Tiger Moth?
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Old 10th Nov 2019, 22:50
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Way to go*:



*pun intended
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Old 10th Nov 2019, 23:17
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Originally Posted by Styx75 View Post
Most aircraft these days will prohibit ifr flight after a hand swing. If you're vfr, just remember to count your fingers after a hand swing start...
and don't forget to count your fingers after shaking hands with a flying school owner- they may have nicked some...!
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Old 10th Nov 2019, 23:34
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Originally Posted by Okihara View Post
Way to go*:



*pun intended
Holy snappin’ ducksh!t.

He’ll get the Darwin Award eventually...
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 06:50
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Unless the donk is designed to be hand swung it's just plane crazy to start an engine by hand swinging the unguarded circular saw! Is it worth it? NO! I'd rather be on the ground pissed off it won't start than lying on some cold stainless steel table!
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 07:59
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Okihara,

Thanks for posting that video, which I've seen before. I've always felt that pulling a propellor through during pre-flight is much more dangerous, precisely because you are not expecting the engine to start!
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 08:12
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I don't know why Hand Swinging is peoples first thought when it comes to a dead battery on an Aircraft instead of finding someone with a vehicle and a set of jumper cables?
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 08:43
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I’ve swung started a big Conti fitted to a Bonanza. Scarily easy. It’s a big country where assistance can be a looooong way away.

Fortunately I was better-prepared than old mate in the video who forgot Rule 1: Always assume one or both mags are ‘live’ and the propellor will kill you.

Jumper cables? Hmmmm. So many reasons why that is not a safe option in many cases. Where to clip them? What happens if they slip loose because of vibration? Cowls open? What happens when the prop wash breaks the cowls off? What about the crud that’s being blown into the engine bay?

As to taking off with a battery that’s not charging and an electrical system that’s not working properly after ‘swing starting’, the Darwin Awards include special mentions for those who repeatedly go out of their way to make sure they kill themselves.
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 09:04
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Clinton wasn't so bad, one side of the cowls off, not so hard to put on with the engine at low idle and make sure they've got a good grip when you put them on! worked like a charm for me
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 09:08
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Glad to hear it, Ix!

As always, so much - so very much - depends on systems knowledge and risk identification and mitigation. My observation is that systems knowledge is generally poor, which makes risk identification and mitigation - hmmm - ‘sub optimal’.
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 09:27
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than lying on some cold stainless steel table!
Or possibly lying on a number of cold stainless steel tables.....
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 10:07
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Back in the 60s, night stop in Northern Burma (as it was then) Parked, on PSP, alongside a Grumman Goose, single pilot with 'business' pax. Goose has flat battery. Pilot decides to hand swing but has to use a chair to stand on to reach the prop! He had 'instructed' one of his pax in the RHS to ease the throttle back, once the engine caught. Engine started, pax increased power!!! Pilot went between prop tips and fuselage to reach through window to close throttle! I can still see the scene after nearly 60 years
As we found out later, the pilot , apparently, had taken the same Goose into a jungle river alighting to pick up M Nav Tony Melton who had ejactef from a Javelin en-route to the FE. Aviation can generate strange mixtures!!
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 10:40
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Originally Posted by Clinton McKenzie View Post
Jumper cables? Hmmmm. So many reasons why that is not a safe option in many cases. Where to clip them? What happens if they slip loose because of vibration? Cowls open? What happens when the prop wash breaks the cowls off? What about the crud that’s being blown into the engine bay?
Still, I'd rather lose the cowls over an arm. Probably less paperwork to fill out for CASA too.
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 11:38
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A modern solution to the flat battery problem is a lithium battery jumper pack. Mine can start a cold 6 cylinder Toyota diesel. They weigh nothing. About $300 for a good one. Also can power your Ipad.
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 12:39
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Now in all your long career Centaurus, have you never flown a Tiger Moth?
Lots of hours instructing on them in the RAAF as well as crop-dusting. For vertically challenged short arses like myself it was a problem getting a hand to the top of the prop to get a good swing - hence the danger. Hand swing the more powerful engines like Cessna/Warrior types with tricycle undercarriage then swinging those props when they were horizontal could be hazardous.

While I never did it thank goodness, hand starting a Dakota engine could be done using a human chain with the bloke drawing the short straw had his hand on the prop and a chain of others holding his other hand and all pulling together. Better still tying a rope around the Dakota spinner and have a jeep pull the rope to get the engine started.
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Old 11th Nov 2019, 12:47
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Originally Posted by Okihara View Post
Still, I'd rather lose the cowls over an arm. Probably less paperwork to fill out for CASA too.
difficult to fill out paperwork missing arms and/or fingers too
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