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Q-talk 59 - LETTERS


My trip home from Ottawa '96 was unique and educational. FSS advised that a squall line was active in northern Missouri and southern Iowa, but the route to St. Louis was clear and forecasted to remain so until mid-afternoon.

I departed Ottawa about 11 a.m. Climbed to 5500 msl, encountering haze and some mist with 2-4 miles visibility forward but still able to see the ground below. About 30 minutes into the flight I encountered light rain and mild carb ice. Dark clouds to the northeast suggested a route change. Carb heat was added and I let down to 3500 msl and altered my course to 140. Within 5 minutes the rain turned to heavy and it started to lightning. I did a quick turn to 270 and found I was surrounded with dark clouds and lightning. It was time to activate the nearby airport search feature on the GPS. Clinton, Missouri was 3.8 miles at 140 with a 4000' runway (4/22).

I got a quick response on the radio advising me of the Clinton conditions, winds at 8 mph from 190. By this time the lightning was frequent and I had dropped to 1500' msl and the rain was blowing in my vents. The GPS lead me right to the airport.

Pooling water was visible on the runway as I touched down. Wing lift was killed with the reflexor. As I continued, I was blown off the runway thru the mowed grass swale and up on the parallel taxiway. As I straddled the swale coming up on the taxiway, the prop struck the grass. I saw something fly from the right side of the plane. I then skidded sideways down the taxiway coming to a stop aimed across the taxiway with the engine still idling. It was still raining hard. I had an excellent view of the mid-field windsock standing straight out and 90 to the runway. As I throttled up to turn around the engine vibration signaled a problem.

At this point I received the first of many helping hands. A friendly voice on the radio said, "Earl is putting on his raincoat and will direct you to a hangar you can use until the rain stops." The Home/Office view of the runway was blocked by the hangars. As I rounded the hangar row a man was pointing to an empty hangar with the open doors. I taxied right on in and shut her down. Both ends of the prop were jagged and there was a strike mark on the right canard about 3' in from the wheel. After it quit running we found the ground strike prop marks (45" apart) and about 8' down the slope from the taxiway. Skid marks from all three wheels were visible all the way from about 600' down the runway thru the grass swale (about 1200') and about 200' on the taxiway. Apparently I was skidding from the moment I left the runway. We found the two pieces that broke off the prop. Only a few splinters were missing on one and the other fit perfectly.

I suspect that I was fast as I touched down. Prop strike distance of 45" would indicate a ground speed of 60-70 mph at 700-800 rpm, that after over a 1000' of sliding. Even with the wet taxiway the mains were flat spotted from the sideways skid.

The friendly voice on the radio belonged to Shirley Thompson. She and her husband Earl are retired WWII veterans who decided to take a position of full time resident managers of the Clinton airport. They took me into their home and treated me like a long lost relative. Shirley handed me a portable telephone and fixed a snack and coffee for me.

During several meals at Ottawa, Bob Malechek, Les Hildebrand and I discussed Q-200 propellers and engines. I knew Bob had recently tested three props and thought he might know where I could get a loaner to get me home. Bob had just gotten home when I called. I explained the situation and he immediately offered to take his prop off and send it to me. I told him I didn't want to cripple his plane and asked who had the other two props he had tested. Bob suggested that Tom Moore had a prop, but was not yet ready to fly. Bob offered to contact Tom, check out methods to get the prop to Kansas City airport and call me back. My attempts to contact Les in Smithville, Missouri (NE of KC) had not yet been successful, but message left at his sons home got him to Clinton airport about 4:30 p.m. About 3 p.m. Bob called with a message that Tom Moore was packing his prop for shipment and that Bob would take it to Dallas/Ft. Worth airport and ship it as "counter to counter" baggage on one of the three flights yet to go that night.

I told Bob that my Great American prop had a 4" thick hub and that in all likelihood Tom's prop would be only 3 1/2" thick. My bolts would not torque up and that many washers would not be safe, I think the limit is three washers. Bob agreed to ask Tom to send along his prop bolts also.

After several more phone calls we got a message from Bob that the prop was coming by air freight as it was too long to go as "counter to counter" baggage. I could be picked up at 6 a.m. Monday morning at the Kansas City airport freight terminal.

I had removed my prop by the time Les had got to the Clinton airport. He suggested we take my prop back to his shop and trim the ragged edges and file for balance and have it as a backup if Tom's prop didn't arrive. We did trim it down to 51" diameter from the original 62". I have not yet put it on the engine, but will at least ground run it.

Installation of Tom's prop was uneventful. We used three standard washers, my 3/8" crush plate and a spinner back plate in mounting, torqued to 15 lbs. the tracking was checked and then it was safety wired.

Tom's prop box would not go into my plane and Les offered to sent it along empty via UPS. My old prop fit nicely on the passenger side held down by the seat belt.

We agreed I would do a ramp run-up to check for vibration. Les would hold the tailwheel down and then come around and visually check the track when I had throttled back. Everything was OK. The plan was for a take-off, climb to 3500' msl over the airport before I split for the east. All went well and I arrived home safely, about 24 hours late.

MORAL OF THE STORY - Keep your Quickie network fine tuned and take your phone list with you! Thanks a million to all who came to my rescue.

Art Jewett, Louisville, KY

Ed. Note: A few other lessons Art taught us. Consider the prop thickness when borrowing a prop. If possible, have the prop bolts sent along if the thickness is in question. When checking into shipping the prop, check the size restrictions with the airline. It looks like a prop all boxed up needs to be shipped as freight and can't go as baggage.

Dear Jim;

I enjoyed your lead editorial in the Nov/Dec 95 newsletter, most builders are not test pilot school graduates and designated engineers start at $1K before they will talk to us as the conservative approach to plans changes is a point well made.

We've made a lot of progress in the last year. 2238 is up on its tricycle gear and the belly board is installed. I found a run out O-200 last spring and we are in the throws of overhauling back to factory new tolerances. ECI in San Antonio has the cylinders and they will restore them using the Cerminil process.

The instrument panel is laid out. We will cut it out of .060" 2024 T3, stiffen it with a right angle extrusion across the lower margin and install it with bolts so it is removable. It is amazing how light the panel is after you cut all of the holes in it. I've decided to light the flight instruments portion of the panel using MS-25010 sockets and a Lexan overlay. A fellow in Tucson (Don Howell at HAVECO) has purchased 80 chopped up B-52s and sells the MS-25010 sockets from them, in excellent condition, for 25% of the new price. My cost was $5.50 each and I will use a dozen in the panel. They are lighter than post lights and much more reliable. The other instruments will be internally lighted. Don also sold me a magnetic compass from an old Buff. I flew B-52s for the Air Force for 10 years so I have a soft spot in my heart for Buff parts.

The radios are selected and the radio harnesses are being wired. College Park Avionics of College Park, Maryland gave us the best bid on the job. The radios will include an encoding transponder, a Narco Mark 12D+nav/com with glideslope (ID-825) and a Garmin 155 TSO GPS with a dedicated King KI-202 indicator. The backup radio will be a portable handheld. We are going to install a full set of gyros with a venturi driving the attitude and directional gyros backed up by a Precise Flight intake manifold standby system and an electric turn and bank. I still need a vertical card directional gyro if anyone knows of a good deal on one.

We thought we had the main fuel tank all cut out in aluminum but we drew it a little too small and have to wait for a new sheet of aluminum to arrive to continue. The old aluminum will not be wasted; it will make great baffling material for the interior of the tank. I have procured a couple of aircraft fuel senders and will use them in each of the tanks. A single gauge will be installed and the tank being read will be selected by a SPDT switch. The aluminum tanks are allowing us to weld aircraft attachments for all lines and fittings on to them. I think this fuel system will avoid all of the problems with contamination and leaking. They will also be removable for repair if necessary. Pictures will be forthcoming shortly as soon as I finish this roll of film.

That's all for now. I'll send some pictures along presently.


Pete Mapes, San Antonio, TX


I came up with what I think is a really slick air filter system for the Q200. You may remember that I extended the air induction pickup to bring it close to the prop. That made room for a conical housing inside for a K&N conical filter. Then I made that whole nosepiece removable from the lower cowling. It turned out very neat, easy to service the filter, and easy to access the flex hose clamps which run from the filter to the carb heat box. And if I want to race, I can remove the filter and substitute an adapter which takes ram air directly.

I've finished the last of the electrical, including permanent mounting of the battery and the ELT system. Just recently, I've stood the airplane on its nose with an engine mount stand, and spent last weekend going over it with a cup of West micro and a razor blade finding and filling as many pinholes as possible before starting to spray primer. Amazing how many there is. Everybody in our EAA chapter tells me that many more will show up once the airplane is the same color everywhere.

By the way, I converted my two Flightcom headsets to ANR using the kit from Headset, Inc. in Amarillo, TX. The kits were $125 each at Oshkosh and they work great. I've been using them in the Pacer. If anyone wants to convert, I can recommend them. They work in almost all David Clark and clone type headsets. They fit my Flightcoms perfectly.

Tom, you said that you might be interested in a write-up of some of the things Jim Ham and I have done that are slightly different. I have hesitated until such time as they are proven, but if you want, I can do some of them. To refresh your memory, the partial list is:

1. Slide in mount for handheld GPS.

2. Removable tiedown rings which quick mount to axle nut.

3. Homemade landing light using 75 watt quartz display case 12V lamp.

4. Toe brakes which have been desensitized based on calculation of braking effort.

5. Split rudder cables which allow separate cables to rudder and tailwheel. This allows the tailwheel to be spring connected as are all other taildraggers, and the addition of a full swivel tailwheel allows the tailwheel steering to be made less sensitive. This coupled with the toe brakes allows tight maneuvering on the ramp. Also the split cables means that breaking the tail spring does not incapacitate the rudder. The whole aim here was to make the steering/braking system as much like all the other taildraggers in the world as possible. We figured that 80 years of experience, which lead to the standard tailwheel assembly, was worth something. I know of several airplanes including Barry Weber's, which were lost due to a broken tail spring, which caused the loss of all steering. Jim Ham is doing a very similar system. He and I have jointly owned two taildraggers over the last 20 years, and we both are unwilling to give up the differential brake steering and depend entirely on the tailwheel.

6. Cabin air vents which minimize the loss of strength in the ring bulkhead which connects the header thank to the carbon spar.

7. Canopy lock which allows locking the canopy either closed, or in a ventilating position.

Jim Ham's now has a new version of his GPS coupler which now includes heading (actually track hold) mode, intercept mode, and the original course following mode. I went out in a new LongEZ yesterday for a test of the new unit with a Garmin 90 and a Nav-Aid autopilot. It works so well it is spooky. We flew a track hold mode for a while and then tuned to intercept the first leg of a four waypoint course. The unit held track until it crossed the first leg, then smoothly turned on course, flew to the second waypoint, tuned and flew to the third waypoint (about 10 degree change), then turned about 110 degrees to fly to the last waypoint. The 110-degree change was accomplished smoothly with only one minor overshoot before setting into the new course. I want one!!!

Bob Farnam, Livermore, CA

The original size gas struts that were used on the O-2/200 front-hinged canopy are no longer sold by Aircraft Spruce and Specialty. AS&S supplied the original struts that went in the Q-2/200 Canopy. For those of you who want to replace your gas struts without having to adjust to a new size (i.e. what the auto parts store has or AS&S's current stock), the original part number is FE11E-324510-P1-45. These struts were made by Gas Spring Corp. of Colmar, PA.

I could not get a number for the GAS SPRING folks. What I did come up with is ORR & ORR at 312-254-0022. ORR &ORR sells struts to AS&S. ORR & ORR's part number for the original struts is H8510-45 and they have them in stock.

Meanwhile, back to my cracked aluminum spinner.

See ya.

Brian Martinez, Quartz Hill, CA


I have recently installed fiberglass engine baffles on my Q2 and found the results very satisfactory (if not TOO satisfactory). While my engine was running within the limits I felt that the temps I was seeing were too high. The fiberglass engine baffles have been used by several Q2 builders and by all reports have worked very well for all who have tried them.

With per plans baffling on a 60-70 F degree day, I would indicate the following:

Climb390-410180100 mph3000
Cruise340-350180-190140 mph3000 (cowl flap open, mixture rich)
Cruise360-370180-190145 mph3100 (cowl flap closed, mixture leaned)

After making and installing the glass baffles I indicate the following (yes, they are in degrees F and have been double checked):

Climb200-225190100 mph3000
Cruise175-200190140 mph3000 (cowl flap open, mixture rich)
Cruise175-200190-200145 mph3100 (cowl flap closed, mixture leaned)

Glass baffle installation:

* Remove everything from the top of your engine and seal the intake and spark plug holes.

* Wrap top of cylinders and heads with duct tape, shrink wrap plastic, or whatever. You are just trying to keep the expanding foam out of the cooling fins.

* Squirt expanding foam (I used the stuff from the hardware store in the can) on top of the heads and cylinders (after they are covered with tape or something). There are two directions you may go here. Either make two individual plenums with each covering only one side of the engine (like I did) or make one plenum that covers both banks of cylinders and the top of the case.

* After the foam dries carve/sand/cut a functional shape out of the foam. The goal is to have a plenum box over the cylinders. I sanded/cut/carved and then would trial fit the intake runner and cowl until nothing touched leaving enough room for the fiberglass. The foam needs to be such that when you layup glass on it the end result will be a glass box that fits snugly against the sides of the cylinders and around the heads but doesn't touch the intake or cowl. Once the foam is the way you want it put duct tape all over the foam to act as a mold release. The goal isn't perfectly smooth glass work so you don't have to be real particular here about the smoothness of the mold.

* Layup about 3-5 ply of 10 oz BID over the whole works. When cured pop the box off the foam, trim and shape. You can effectively shape the box by heating it with a hot air gun and then bending with pliers. With a little work you can achieve a very snug fit over the cylinders and heads.

* Drill holes in the box over the spark plugs to allow your spark plus socket to fit in. Cut four round pieces of baffling material to fit over the plug and up against the plenum box to seal around the plugs.

The inlet tends to be a little more work. There probably isn't a single best way to do this. I decided to use one 3" dia. tube for each plenum box. This tube goes straight from the forward face of the plenum thru the cowl and into the air. It is glassed into the cowl and I used baffling material riveted to the aft end to form a seal up against the plenum. I think Ron Whetson used the per plans intake and made a glass runner from it to the plenum. Phil Haxton made a single plenum and feeds air from the top center of the cowl into his plenum.

My installation has two intakes, the 3" dia. tubes, each with 7 square inches of area, total 14 square inches. This has proven to be too much. My bottom of my intakes enters the cowl about one inch above the split line. The front of the intakes are cut perpendicular to the air stream. I have experimented with trimming the intakes even with the cowl. This doesn't work. It appeared that I was getting zero cooling air. I am now experimenting with reduced intake diameter sizes.


1) I trimmed my plenum to stop at about halfway down the cylinder barrel then wrapped a piece of tin over the outside of each cylinder barrel and safety wired them together. This forces the air to flow thru the fins to the bottom of the cylinders but still allows easy removal of the plenum box. I suggest using Great Plains cool tin for the bottom of the cylinders.

2) Ron Whetson suggested placing the CHT probes on the bottom of the cylinders to pick up the temp on the warmest part of the cylinders.

3) This setup forces you to do something different with the oil cooler. I made a small tin baffle to the lower cowl and cut a 1" x 10" slit horizontally to allow air into the cooler. I am considering doing away with the stock exhaust so that I have more room up front and can make a nice glass plenum type box for the oil cooler.

4) The whole process took me a couple of long days. It really isn't that much work for the much cooler temps.

Jon Finley, Bloomington, MN

Dear Mr. Masal:

I am the owner of a completed and flying Q2 I purchased from the builder, Bill Losch of Huntington Beach, California. My Q2 was purchased in 1981 with the first flight in 1985. I first flew it last month.

The airplane has: GU canard, reflexor, 64 HP, hand brake, carbon reinforced tail cone speed brake, modified rudder by Frank Folmer (full height mass and aerodynamic balanced similar to the Dragonfly).

The airplane flies well. The new rudder greatly improves ground handling.

James Postma, Steilacoom, WA

Ed. Note: Hold it! Now James, think about this rudder business a minute. If you never flew the thing with the old rudder, how can you know the new rudder improves ground handling greatly??? This lack of factually verifiable data is what gets bogus information flying around in the rumor pipeline. We need to be more careful with our quick one-liners.


Every 3rd Sunday of the month

11:00 a.m. November 17th, La Crosse, WI

Contact Jon Finley - (612) 888-3093

*** more info in the next issue ***

Bob Malechek's souped up Ottawa award winner

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