Saturday, 18 February 2012

Functional Art

The propeller has now been returned, inspected, assembled, certified and is ready to mount.

It looks beautiful, but was the original polished? probably not, but I shall take a mulligan on this one, it just looks too good to paint!
I persuaded my wife that the propeller was much safer sitting in our front room on a stand, as opposed to tucked away in a crate. 
So I built a stand. 
We get plenty of comments, most are favorable.

The propeller is 9 feet long, with a 5406 30-spline hub and W2 blades.
The propeller has been quite a saga; I managed to find a few 5406 30-spline hubs some time ago. I then located and bought a set of 4350 blades, as I thought they were going to be suitable. It turned out they were not suitable for the horsepower, but I was fortunate to then find a set of correct blades, and trade my 4350 blades for them.
I then sent all the blades, the hub and parts to The Prop Shop, in Oklahoma, who did a really nice job assembling and certifying all the components. The blade angle has initially been set to 12.5 degrees, which is probably a good first setting.
We were also able to locate a set of the correct 1931 Hamilton Standard decals, which have been applied to the blades, and finish them off nicely.
This assembly is probably as close to the original propeller as can be assembled today. I still have a 2D30 Constant speed propeller which we could use if required, but as it would have a large adverse CG effect, I would not want to use it if possible, although it would be a better prop to explore the envelope.
(but what a great excuse to build another airplane)

I found an interesting comment in a write up by Gen Doolittle on testing the Super Solution, he mentioned they set the blade angle over 30 degrees! And it took over 8000 feet to get off the ground the first flight!
This brings up a couple of points, one they must have had a BIG field, and two, why would you keep going after the first 3-4000 feet?

Anyway, once it got on the step he said it went pretty fast.

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