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Q-talk 35 - LETTERS

Dear Jim,

I had a great time at Ottawa. I got in two rides with Bob Malechek and Charlie Harris. I brought back your TUIT button and a gold Q-2 pin and incentive to DO it.

I had a terrible ride back to Des Moines Sunday night. I ran into solid IFR Sunday evening at Leavenworth so landed at the military airfield and stayed the night until Monday afternoon until it became marginal again.

Clark Betts, Des Moines, IA

Dear Jim,

Just a short note to let you know how much I enjoyed the fly-in at Ottawa. Granted the weather wasn't all it could have been, but many of us flew out around noon on Monday. Thank goodness for Loran to pick our way out of the mess.

Wayne and Deb Ulvestad in their Dragonfly followed me up to Freemont, NE where the weather was good enough that they could find South Dakota from there. I didn't know that bugs destroyed lift on the Dragonfly so bad that they had to stop and de-bug.

Enroute, my 75 hp Revmaster produced more speed than his 80 hp HAPI. Of course he had two people, so I feel performance was quite similar.

As a response to your suggestions for some activity next year, I'd like to remind you of the two items we spoke of. An electronic tach meter would be great for everyone to take a check on their RPM. Secondly, a set of scales and someone who knows how to do weight and balance would also be great. At a Grumman fly-in I attended, a local A&P did it for all interested for about 5 bucks a copy. A big hit.

Walt Halloran, Rochester, MN

Dear Jim

Since I saw you last at the 'GRAZIN' IN THE GRASS', I've flown ten hours and fixed a few things, fine tuning the airplane. Still have a few things I want to do to the plane before I take off on a long cross-country. I picked up a RAY JEFFERSON Loran for a pittance but I guess I'll have to carry it in my lap when I'm flying. Will only need it on cross country's.

The FAA came by the hangar and asked that I display the Quickie at their open house for the Longmont, Colorado ARTCC. So I and six other aircraft, taxied down the streets from the airport to the FAA facility approximately four miles. First time I've ever run a red light in my airplane! We left the planes on display over the weekend of the 20th June. Sunday we went to pick up the aircraft and taxi back to the airport. It had rained during the weekend but the plane looked dry, no water in the tail, cockpit looked dry so I climbed in to taxi back and got soaking wet from the sponge cushions. I didn't dare get out of the plane in front of all those people lining the streets, looked like I had wet my pants.

The ROCKY MOUNTAIN REGIONAL FLY-IN was a lot of fun. Gary Jones of Salt Lake City won Best Composite with his Q-200. Charlie Harris was there with his Q-200 and I in my Quickie. Robert Bounds showed up, driving in from Grant, Nebraska. Weather was a factor for him.

Sunday as the weather started to build up, I climbed into my airplane and taxied out to take off. Charlie Harris was ahead of me by several planes, he took off and went around for a low pass, by that time I was No. 1 to take off, he went screaming by at about 50 feet, then I took off. When I was about 5 minutes out, headed home, Charlie came in under me and pulled up into a wingover in front of me, he must have been doing 200 mph! Damn!! It was pretty!!

You asked me what I did for a front bulkhead for my spinner, well I used a flat disk of aluminum mounted ahead of the compression ring under the prop bolts. I took some model airplane gas line and slit one side, then installed it around the aluminum disc to make a snug fit inside the spinner. It has worked well for the last fifty hours.

Be good to yourself, get the hangar built, and get some flying in.

Howard Hardy

Greg Merrill shows off his pride and joy which just had its 1st birthday (see story QT #32).

Jim-fellow builders,

I have undone in seconds what it took four years of sweat, anguish and sadistic pleasure to accomplish. Tri Q-200-E-L-M, N87JG, was trashed landing in trees near Caldwell, NJ Airport August 6, 1992. I miraculously walked (ran) away from this one ... I guess it was a good landing!! Suffice it to say; when the header tank runs dry (main tank full) on go-around, options can become severely limited. That's right, this dumb ass forgot to turn the transfer pump switch on !!!!!!!!! I have talked to others who have had this happen at altitude where it does not seem so serious. This was the first - and last - time it happened to me!! To other builders, may I suggest a warning system (possibly float actuated) with a buzzer and/or flashing light to alert pilot of low fuel in the header tank.

The only positive note was that my Q-Bird broke apart extensively to deposit this humble pilot nearly unharmed - to fly another day. Onlookers, tower personnel and the Airport Manager were amazed upon seeing me run out of the trees! I do not know what I'll do at this point so will turn salvaged parts into cash for now. Plane landed flat and did not burn so most parts are intact or repairable. See classified ads if you need anything.

Many of you are interested to know how the Warp Drive ground adjustable propeller performed. I would have to say "well" given the limited time available to flight-test it. After my Aymar DeMuth prop cracked, (Mike's attitude was that it could not have been the propeller's fault) I replaced it with a "constant-chord" Warp Drive one, which fluttered at the tips upon ground run-up. Dale, at WD, advised me of this beforehand saying that he needed performance specs with this prop in order to tailor a tapered tip version to the plane. With this prop, acceleration on runway was excellent but I was over speeding at cruise. After informing him of specs and waiting about three weeks, my tapered tip version arrived. What a difference! This prop staticed at 2525 with a max RPM of 2650 at a mid-point pitch setting!! Talk about almost constant speed!!! All tip flutter was gone. Climb was better than the Aymar-DeMuth version by at least 200 FPM. Set up with slightly less pitch, performance should be excellent. Maintenance is minimal, prop blades are cheap ($129 each) and you can tailor the pitch to your needs. Mister DeMuth, you can keep your flimsy wooden props!!!

Being part of the Quickie gang/phenomena has been the most exciting and rewarding endeavor of my life (except marriage - of course). I'd like to thank all of you whose ideas and friendships have made life so interesting these last eight years.

John Groff (609) 234-7600 Wk.

What flavor of gas do you burn in your O-200? (87-89-92 octane)? I've tried them all and they all perform about the same. When I ask Continental they will not comment on Mogas only Avgas. Many of the homebuilt operators state they burn only premium 92 octane, but there seems to be no agreement.

I wrote EAA Flight Research Center. This is what they said:

"Our STC was tested for 87 min. antiknock index. It is not necessary to use any higher octane. It is true that some engine manufacturers do not recommend the use of auto gas. They do not want to be liable for anything. But it has been tested to be safe and it is FAA approved. In your letter you stated that you have a Quickie 200 with a TCM-O-200 engine. As long as you tested your aircraft using auto fuel from the start, you do not need an STC." Signed Gloria Drexler.

I'm going to continue to use 87 octane low lead at 96 cents a gallon.

Dave Naumann - N200DN

Howdy Jim,

Big news, I completed my flight test hours, 51.6 hours (I switched props in there so they made me go to that point instead of 40). What a great little plane!

How is the Rotax conversion coming along Jim? You are getting some work done on it now aren't you? Maybe instead of the 503 you should put on one of those AMW 90 hp 2-strokes that they are using on the Lightning Bug? You'd sure think that would increase the performance!

I have some numbers for all that are interested. I'm running the 503 w/single carb and 2.23:1 gear box. I have a 46" Precision Propellers ground adjustable prop that I am continually fooling with but right now I have approximately 31-32 1/2 of pitch in it, which is about 52 or 53 inches. My plane is not super clean. It weighs in at 295 lbs. empty, so I'm flying at about 560 lbs (either me or the gas is exceptionally heavy - not sure which). One other tidbit, I flew formation with a Glassair a couple weeks ago and he said I was 10 mph faster than I was indicating. I'm showing 115 mph at 5500 rpm. A 80 mph climb gives roughly 800 fpm and 70 mph almost 1000 fpm, all the above at 60 1/2 F. at 4500 ft MSL. At 10,000 ft I was still getting 300-400 fpm. I could get more speed by increasing the pitch but it really drops the climb off.

I think the big problem with the whole setup is the short prop (purely a guess). It seems that any more pitch and the prop loses a lot of effectiveness, like it's too great an angle of attack and is stalling, even at cruise. I hear Chris Barber in AL is running a 52" prop and doing well with it. I'm not so sure I have enough room to go that long. But I do plan on trying some longer props in the future. I'm running a 160 main jet an 8L2 needle and a 74-needle jet. I've used this same setup since its been about 40 1/2 F. til now 70 1/2 at a field elevation of 3,850'. This is giving me 1100 1/2 EGT and plugs that are nearly perfect color. Although at full throttle the EGT temp falls about 1,000 1/2 over the high cruise reading. I believe this is due to the needle being a little lean!? I am using AV-2 two-cycle oil from California Power Systems and it is great (buy it in 5-gallon buckets and its fairly cheap). I replace the plugs every 20 hours and that's it. Never had one foul yet. I did have a CDI brain box fail for some reason ten hours ago. Steve Beatty at Airscrew Performance (who did the dual ignition conversion for Jinx) replaced it free, which was really great. My learning curve is such that I must first destroy something before I can fix something else. So I fried the other brain box on my own trying to fix the first one.

I did get my first Interstate landing a month or so ago which I spoke to you about, Jim. Plugged fuel tank vent line that led to fuel starvation and engine failure. After I switched to a Dragonfly style fuel filler which is a little box to reach into to get to a car gas cap and little door over it. Works great, also have ram air pressure to the tank now. I was concerned that this might cause the engine to run a little rich but this has not happened. The landing was only exciting when I got down in the traffic, one must watch out for turbulence behind other vehicles. No damage and I took off on the Interstate a short while later. However, I was very lucky, looking back at the chain of events, and highly recommend that you do not try this unless it is an emergency.

Question for all you fiberglass engineers. I have a Dragonfly friend who has a floor jack that he runs under his plane and jacks it up just enough to take most of the weight off the canard. Should I be doing this? Will the (GU) canard sag? Mine is in a hangar and out of the sun.

New address and phone for me. Probably just temporary.

Jon Finley, 2221 Choteau St., Helena, MT 59601

(406) 442-5172

Ed. Note: Years ago, the Dragonfly prototype showed up at Oshkosh with some mid-span canard "corrugations". These chordwise waves were said to be caused by canard sag on a canard that was not post-cured. Over time, this is the kind of event that grows into the myth among some tribal members that makes them believe in a big problem where there is only a small one. I'm not a composite engineer, but the evidence is that, yes, a post-cured canard sags slightly over time. Over time, believe it or not, a pane of glass gets thicker at the bottom than at the top due to the material's flow. The same can happen with the "fluid" glass-epoxy matrix. The question is, "does it amount to a hill of beans"?

Thus far composite aircraft operators don't seem to be reporting this as a serious problem. But if you're so inclined, jacking up the plane probably wouldn't hurt. Anybody else wanna comment?

Dear Jim,

My O-235 powered Q-200 (Q-235?) project is still progressing at a dismally slow pace. I hate sanding and painting and have only recently fully comprehended that the real meaning of "wetted area" is those thousands of square feet of airplane that requires sanding."

Cowling is semi-done and with same installed, the machine resembles a 1930's child idea of a rich man's car -- long snoot and dinky little cabin 'way back there.

Tailcone is painted and cleverly hanging upside down on the front porch -- beside the unpainted cowl. Couldn't open front door with tail so situated -- a minor problem ultimately solved by sawing off part of the door. Priorities!

Quentin Durham, Orinda, CA

(510) 254-7843

Dear Jim,

Enclosed find a check for $20.00 for the 1992 issues, pictures of my Q-200 with the broken wing and indexes of issues 11 thru 28 by subject and author. I will try to complete the index back to issue 1 yet this summer. If anyone has any subjects that they have compiled lists for I would be interested in incorporating them into mine. A copy of my index is available upon request and please feel free to distribute the enclosed copies. I hope to have the time, energy, and MONEY to get back to the project this summer.

Larry Jess, P. O. Box 156, Ridgeland, WI 54763

(715) 949-2265

OUCH!!! This Wisconsin based Q-2 takes it on the chin.


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