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QuickTalk 24 - QUICKIE HINTS

From Henry Gardiner #570

Quickie urethane rough planer made of an old coping saw blade and some 2x4. See diagram. Blade is held perpendicular to travel for first cut to about .25". Second cut to .05" is made with blade at 30-degree angle to line of travel. Larger areas require central inland of foam to be retained to provide support for end of tool while it's used near perimeter of area. Then islands are cut away. Cut is taken to final .6" depth with sandpaper. Tool bottom should be covered with Mylar package tape to reduce abrasion.

From Norm Howell #486

1. RE: large tires. In QT#5, Jim Stovekin asked if there were any tires without knobs that fit the large Quickie wheels. After a frustrating search, I concluded that the 4.00-5 size tires could not be easily found in this hemisphere. At Kerrville, Gene Sheehan said that 11.400x5 tires were approximately the same size and could be used. Actually, it is smaller than the Quickie tundra tire and has an aircraft rib design and is manufactured by Cheng Shin. These tires are standard on Eipper and other ultralights and are available through ultralight dealers or companies like California Power Systems at 1-800-AIRWOLF (catchy, eh?). Cost is $11.50 for tire and $5.50 for the tube.

2. However, your brakes will now miss the tire due to the smaller diameter. Fear not, the solution will also enhance your braking. Remove the brake from the wheelpant. You will need a 1"x1"x6 or 7" phenolic block (Aircraft Spruce has 1" phenolic), and 4 short AN3 bolts. Cut and drill the phenolic blocks as shown:

If the thickness of the phenolic is about 5/8" at the center, the pad should hit the tire perpendicular to the surface. Be sure to trial fit everything before you cut down the blocks too much! Use AN3 bolts (-6A or -7A is about right) as necessary to secure the pad.

3. I put aileron stops under the CSA3 arms as suggested in QT#5 and was most pleased with the results. I used some leftover phenolic laminated together to produce the correct height. I did the same thing under the CSA-5 and CSA-7 arms for the elevators and I get a nice, solid "thunk" as full control travel is reached.

4. WIRING: I bought a couple of short "barrier strips" from Radio Shack to make a small DC bus and ground bus. Each bus has eight attach points (screws) for wires. This made the wiring go easy, especially since I didn't have to solder 5 or 6 wires to the switched side of the master. Be sure to buy the little metal strip that turns the barrier strip into a bus too.


by Jim Masal


As this is written (Dec. 3), this editor has put 8.6 flight test hours on Bob Giles' Global powered Quickie (Giles is a student pilot yet, but getting closer!) Results are very encouraging though we are still chasing down bugs. The 35 hp. Global is turning a Sterba 54x36 prop at 2600 rpm static with max of 3000 rpm in level flight at 1500' and at 105 to 110 mph. Global says it won't deliver 35 hp until 3300 rpm and can be run at 3500 to 4000 rpm at cruise. Clearly we are missing some "oomph". The prop was shortened to 52" with no noticeable improvement (we were told we could expect +100 rpm per inch of shortening). The original prop was ordered to equal the one on the Questor, developed near here, similar in size to the Quickie and successfully running a Global 35 hp. Ed Sterba recently cut and reshaped the prop to a 48x36. We also have a Sterba 50x52 to try (loaned to us by Gary Wilson). These should provide an interesting couple of flights!

So far, even without best rpm's the ship climbs at about 500 fpm at 600 lbs. gross in calm winds and on a 75-degree day, but climb rate drops off as early as 2000' AGL. Vibration level is still comparable to my standard Quickie (even lost one canopy hinge on one flight), but the mounts could still be improved some. Annoying and serious oil losses were traced once to a poorly sealed cam plug (fixed), then a broken oil pressure/Hobbs fitting on the engine, and then a hole in an oil cooler hose (replaced with aluminum tubes from Global). Finally, we believe the engine just didn't want the last half quart of oil we were giving it and it kept kicking it back out. Since we've left it out, we've experienced only minimal breather oil loss.

The magneto took some minor adjustment once, and that stopped an engine miss that I was experiencing once every 5-10 minutes. The tailwheel was replaced with the larger Q-2 type and ground loops virtually stopped. Ailerons are not up reflexed yet, but NO directional control problems have surfaced during over 2 dozen takeoff and landing rolls.

Throughout all the above, support from the Global folks (especially Global's Gene Smyers who really knows his engine stuff!), has been quite good. At the end of the last flight, while taxiing back, the engine seemed to start running on one cylinder and then quit. We were unable to get a restart (total engine time: 17 hrs). The magneto was replaced and Bob found that a stud holding down the rocker arms had broken so it was replaced. Next flight was with the 48"x36" prop which gave the same climb rate at 200 more rpm, +200 in cruise and 10 mph more, but still not the 3600 rpm we expected. More later.

No further word has been received from Tom Solan who has a Global mounted in GA. We don't believe he'll fly soon. Paul Wright in England and Steve Hickam in AZ have bought and will be mounting Globals, I understand.


Art Kreutzer has been experimenting with this engine in Florida and sent the following report:

Dear Jim,

First some background. I am not a mechanic but have a working knowledge of engines. Al Kasten, a retired Navy aircraft inspector worked with me almost daily. Some of the effects in my Quickie might not happen in someone else's. Finally, the following is not meant to be a criticism of Advanced Engine Design's Kawasaki kit. I bought the kit because I believe the 18 hp is underpowered and the 22 hp heads are no better and in fact, worse in some respects.

The Kawasaki was installed in March, and from that time on we could not get the engine to run properly twice in a row. The problem seems to be all in the fuel system. The engine was shipped with an incorrect jet, which pumped fuel overboard at high rpm. It was changed. We would set up the engine, uncowled, to run according to specs, mount the cowl, and the engine would not go to top rpm and/or would not idle. Take off the cowl, and the engine would not change back. We would get it set up to run perfectly, ready to fly, run it the next day just to check and it would not run the same as the day before. I flew the aircraft about 12 times; always above the airport and not once that I didn't cut it short because of a problem, usually rough engine (We put about 12-13 hours total on the engine). Twice this happened on takeoff. Imagine you're driving your car at 35 mph and then pull out the choke. The last time that happened, I said "enough", how many times can I luck out?

There are a few other things that popped up. First, the rpm reducing transmission turns the prop backwards so left rudder is needed for torque and P factor. The prop doesn't windmill, it freewheels, ergo, no speed braking. In my plane, I went full idle at midfield downwind, and adjusted the pattern to fly approach at 70-75 mph (too fast?). Above the field I was easily able to reach 140 mph, but not for long. The higher the speed, the more sensitive the controls to the point where the aircraft attitude had to be constantly corrected. The smallest air movement would set it off. At ALL rpm I got a high frequency, low modulation vibration and couldn't get rid of it or change it no matter what I did. Possibly replacing the steel motor mount with Kevlar would help. Lastly, we estimated fuel consumption at 2.5 gph and with an 8 gal. tank, that ain't too hot.

My guess is that we don't have the right combination of jets installed; there are five. I am sure the kit is a good one, but it has to be set up exactly right to perform in an aircraft. I wish I could give some advice to others who may be interested, but I have no answers, just questions.

I'm putting the Onan back in with the 20 hp heads.


Gary Wilson of Bruceton, TN built an Onan Quickie that he successfully flew a number of hours then sold to a Floridian who later destroyed it in a landing. The fellow liked the plane and wanted another but with a better engine. Gary built another airframe and decided on a Dawn Star installation. He had some problems with the belt drive and running at idle speed, but got those worked out, began his taxi tests and flew about the first of November. On first flight, the ship popped up to about 50', accelerated to about 65 mph ten stopped climbing or accelerating. With trees ahead of him, Gary tried to ease the plane around, but lost altitude, hooked a wheelpant on a fence and "arrived" in a field with a destroyed Quickie. Gary walked away with a bunch of bruises and, later, a few stitches sewn at the local emergency room. He gained great respect for the Quickie's crashworthiness. Fortunately his injuries were minor; unfortunately he got no performance data on the engine. Among the scant detail he had to report: the engine sounded fine all they way to splashdown; besides the engine, he was flying with an otherwise untested three bladed ground adjustable prop and had not made a cowling for the engine. We've had 2 Onan Quickie crashes attributed to the excessive drag of flight without cowl though this engine should have had the excessive power, if working right, to overcome such a liability.

As time from the crash elapses, Gary is beginning to talk about buying or building another airframe to take another crack at developing this engine.

ROTAX 503:

Our thanks to CA QBAer Burt Elliott who tracked down and influenced Brock McCaman to write the following entertaining and informative letter about his Quickie experience:

Dear Jim,

BACKGROUND. My Quickie was originally constructed and test flown in July '82 with the 20 hp Onan variant when I was still a Navy A-4 driver stationed in Beeville, TX. The airframe proved to be a sheer delight to fly, but the powerplant, although reliable, was completely underwhelming. No guts.

Upon leaving the Navy, I hopped in the Quickie and flew west to Camarillo, CA, my current airport. Quickie pilots know an awful lot about the properties of ground effect because they spend so much time in it - I did for miles and miles while racing trucks along I-10 with the Onan firewalled. I also slogged through Banning Pass in the rain. I may have used a few lives up on that trip. My thoughts (read obsession) then turned toward finding a new engine alternative. The quest for horsepower was on.

THE SEARCH. There are 6 Quickies at Camarillo Airport and as you can imagine, a lot of the hangar talk centered about potential Onan replacements. I was one of the leaders of the faction that maintained that any new engine would have to be of the 4-cycle variety because, after all, that's what real airplanes had. Reliability, I kept interjecting, was the key feature. Secondly, and almost as importantly, REAL airplanes with REAL airplane engines just don't go "ring-a-ding-ding" when they run. "Imagine the humiliation," I would argue.

...Enter the Aero Motion Twin, rated at 52 hp with a proposed weight of 77 lbs. That would be perfect. Two of us bit. In the ensuing months we would learn that the engine was never to be and that our $1000 deposits were never to be ... returned. Dismal times followed. The 2-cycle advocates expounded on the virtues of big hp, small weight and reliability improved by state-of-the-art technological advances. My side was still smarting from just having $1000 of wind knocked out of our sails, when one day a gent came by and asked us if we had ever thought of using a 40 hp Dawn Star Rotary engine. He went on to say that there was a loaner engine available from a guy who was going to put it in a motorglider. He wanted somebody to borrow it and figure out how to install the thing. It was even OK to fly it! If we liked it, we could keep it and replace his. I jumped at this most generous offer. The engine was installed on a newly fabricated 4130-engine mount, plumbed, wired and ready to go. In front of what seemed like a crowd of thousands, it was finally coaxed into starting and promptly proceeded to try and vibrate the airplane apart. At idle the wingtips oscillated up and down 6 inches and instrument needles fell from their mounting pins. The next day I called the Dawn Star distributors in FL to bitch about a perceived vibration problem, but was met only with the recording that so cordially told me that the phones were disconnected and no forwarding number was available. I was distraught. I de-Dawn Starred the Quickie and sent the whirling buzz-bomb back to its owner.

After strike 2, I finally started to question my 4-cycle resolve and in an air of co-operation and airport brotherhood, I decided to expand my horizons. I read everything I could find on 2-cycles and even hiked on over to the Ultralight patch to talk to those boys. I spoke with Stan Franks of Silhouette Aircraft at Santa Paula and 2 local Goldwing guys. The inescapable conclusion was that the Rotax 503 (52 hp) with the geared (not belted) reduction drive enjoyed an excellent reputation for dependability and quality. I was quickly becoming a ring-a-ding-ding advocate.

ROTAX 503 INSTALLATION. I selected the dual carb version rated at 52 hp at 6500 rpm. One carb per cylinder makes it easier to keep one cylinder from running hotter than the other. I had the big wheel kit and so was able to spin a 48" prop with a comfortable 7-8" ground clearance. I referenced a set of propeller black magic graphs and concluded this prop would be happiest turning 3500 rpm. Lowest gearing available for the reduction drive at the time was 2.238 to 1, equating to only 2900 rpm as max prop rpm. Not the best, but adequate. 2.0 to 1 gears are supposed to be available now and I have a set on order. Working with propeller master Craig Catto, we determined that 3 blades were necessary to absorb the hp, given the limitations on the diameter. The old engine was joyously removed from the firewall, the pie pan was ceremoniously thrown away Frisbee style, the holes were patched and the whole thing re-skinned. Inside, all firewall attachment points were built up and 2' long UNI strips were utilized to distribute the increased loading along the fuselage sides. Heavy glass pads were built up where the AN-6 bolts would pass through the firewall. An additional horizontal stiffener was positioned on the firewall below the upper mounting bolts. This new stiffener, along with the old one that the rudder pedals are mounted to now form a heavy glass "trough". This provides additional support to the upper attachment points.

An engine mount utilizing welded 4130 steel tubes forms a frame that supports, via shockmounts, the 3/8" thick aluminum plate to which the engine is directly bolted. Special thanks to Stan Franks and the Silhoutte for letting us adapt their vibration isolation scheme. The mount was designed to withstand 12 g loads, which correspond to reported ultimate canard loading. In the event of a bad landing, who knows, both may fail simultaneously. It was designed by myself and Jinx Hawks (primarily Jinx) and we have been pleased with it - vibration levels are below those of the Onan at all power settings. The finished Super Quickie has 2.6 times the original hp with only 35 lbs extra weight. Ten of these lbs. were 2 lead bars just forward of station 153 to maintain original CG. A mold was built for the engine cowlings and Jinx and I could probably be talked into loaning it out on occasion. Building molds is a horrible task not fit for man nor beast.

PERFORMANCE. With 200 hours in standard Quickies, I was staggered by the first flight. Takeoff was estimated by observers at 300-500' and I had held it down until the airspeed swept past 65 IAS. Climbout was established at 90-95 mph with VSI reading 1300-1500 fpm. The fun meter was pegged.

Unaccustomed to the new climb attitude, I caught myself several times trying to squeeze the hell out of the stick. Quickies aren't supposed to climb like that doing 95 mph on downwind. The engine was turning redline with the throttle greatly reduced. This was expected since I still had the old gears and was using the prop designed for the Dawn Star. Craig Catto is currently fabricating a new prop for the Rotax. It will be a 3 blader but the pitch will be increased from 42 to 54. This should bring the Vmax level up to the 150 mph airframe redline. Smooth air cruise should be about 140 mph. Of course you never get something for nothing so I expect to see that eye-opening rate of climb to be somewhat reduced. Residual thrust at idle tends to extend landing glide and rollout, but I can still make the first turnoff at 1200'. Dropping the ground idle setting should help some.

I have just begun flight-testing so these numbers are somewhat cursory. I'll be happy to provide an update when I get a chance to try out the new gears and prop. (Brock included drawings of his engine mount. ED.)


Our normally alert and informative Canadians may be letting us down. Will one of you put on your cub reporter hat and check on a story? I heard there's a Canadian Quickie flying with a Rotax 447 and a cockpit controllable prop, and it's been flying for some time. Can we get some info by next issue? Also I heard that QBAer Ed Miller in IL is flying a Rotax but so far he's been mum about it. Can somebody coax him a bit?


John Hicks has one on order and reports "Just got word from INAV...they now won't be available 'til 'end of the first quarter.' More of the same." He's heard from one source that the Pong Dragon may have gone belly up.

Just before the ink hit the presses, Ed Miller came through! He even had this typed in my 5" margin format but the type was light so I hope this comes out readable:

Dear Jim,

Here is a description of experience with a Rotax 447 on my Quickie. Sorry that you've had to wait much longer than I promised, but I wanted as much time on the engine as possible before going public. Hope the following will be useful to others.

The engine has a 2.0:1 geared reduction unit and 44x42 prop. I now have 14 hours on it, which is not much time but certainly enough to get a rough idea what it will do. As background to others, this is the third engine I've tried, a Koenig 4-cyl radial having followed the Onan. The Rotax gives very noticeable performance improvement over both the others. Top speeds with the other engines were 105 and 98 mph indicated respectively. The plane now shows just under 140 mph at 6400 rpm. Climb rate with the Onan was between 200-300 fpm and the Koenig gave about 550 fpm. By comparison the plane now climbs at around 900 fpm with full fuel. Normal cruise, with tachometer showing 5800-6000 rpm, is 125 mph. Fuel burn at this setting is about 3.5 gph. I was initially concerned that getting a decent climb rate would mean sacrificing the cruise speed I wanted, given the reputed narrow power band of 2-cycle engines. This has not happened. With the 44x42 prop static rpm is only 5100, but this is very sufficient to get the plane moving and airborne. Once in the air both engine rpm and airspeed build quickly. I've found 80 mph to give the best rate of climb, as engine rpm is up to around 5600, well within the power band. Others may wonder at 80 as a climb speed given the time an Onan takes to get one there, but with the Rotax I'm at 80 and climbing by the point at which I'd break ground at 60 with the Onan. The plane climbs fine at lower speeds, but rate is down to only 500 fpm or so at 65 mph. Climb performance is all the more notable given the 316 lb. empty weight of my plane. Compared to the Koenig, which was extremely smooth, there is some vibration, but it is a high-frequency buzz, nothing like the hammering vibration of the Onan. My shock mount system is on the stiff side and a bit of fine-tuning may help. Even at its present level of vibration, however, the plane is perfectly enjoyable to fly for extended periods.

Weight and balance did not go outside of limits with this installation, although I did put a large tailwheel on the plane to move CG back a bit. Engine weight came out very close to the Onan, but the unit sits further forward.

Installation of the engine took quite a bit of time, the trickiest part being the muffler. I decided to suspend it directly below the engine, which meant a great deal of cutting and welding. The engine itself sits on a simple four-point bed-type mount with 1/2" rubber donuts as vibration damping. I did not use the existing holes in the firewall, but glassed them in and started over. The mount structure bolts rigidly to the firewall, the rubber being below the engine. The set-up uses dual carbs, not so much for power, which isn't significantly greater than with a single carb, but to allow a cowl with no bump on the side. The dual carbs fit very close to the engine. They seem easy to synchronize and have given me no trouble. The rope for starting passes through the firewall, with the handle resting on the fuel tank. When started cold the engine takes 4-6 pulls. When warm it invariably starts with one very easy pull. Engine cooling has not been a problem. Warm air from the blower is ducted directly out the top of the cowl. On a standard day CHT is around 325 F with EGT at 1100-1200. Even on climb-out CHT rarely exceeds 350 F.

To date the engine has not missed a beat and shows every sign of being dependable. My only tense moment came when the muffler separated at the 180-degree elbow I had made to position it below the engine, and began burning a hole in the cowl. I've now reinforced the tubing and lined nearby cowl with Fiberfax just in case. Were I to do it all again, I'd suspend the muffler below the canard, using air space and Fiberfax to protect from heat. This would eliminate any sharp bends, which probably get very hot as exhaust gasses flow around them.

Finally, the cowl took a lot of time, as it was made from scratch, but anyone with the experience of building a Quickie could do it. This engine allows for a very nice, pointed cowl even with the muffler hanging below.

Overall I like the installation very much, and the plane now flies pretty much as I think it should. The only drawback seems to be rate of fuel burn, which doesn't allow more than about 1.5 hours of flight time (at 125 cruise) with reserve. To me this is not a real problem since I use the plane as a fun machine rather than for cross-country traveling. Even so I'm considering building a 4-gallon auxiliary tank into the front portion of my baggage compartment. Assuming that weight and balance remain within limits the additional weight should pose no problem for this engine.

I considered selling a set of plans for the installation but have now decided against it given the regrettable realities of liability insurance. However, I'm willing to describe details of my set-up to others who would like to consider installing this engine, the responsibility for using any of my ideas being theirs. I can be reached at (312) 758-7928, evenings.

Ed Miller (#182) N80JW, Chicago Heights, IL

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