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Old 01-01-2012, 02:42 PM   #1
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Default READ THIS ...... incident with blade break !

Today I was testing BL motors to see what I could fit to my new Biplane to be built.
It calls for a 2830 1000KV motor ...

I have a 2836 1100KV on order and considered using what I have on bench idle.

I have various idle motors at present ... an RC Timer 28xx that would be ideal but is pole mount and cannot be fitted, needs new shaft anyway. A Turnigy 28xx as well that is pole mount and would do the job but cannot be mounted. the ones that I could mount ... the motor is fixed by 4 screws into the body and shaft passes though mount firewall to prop adaptor ... I have 2 - a 2822 1400Kv and a 2810 1800Kv ....

The 1800 is definitely not a candidate as the biplane needs a 10 inch prop. So I thought maybe the 2822 could temporarily do duty.

So I rig the workbench ... a DIY unit that has the two wood top sections that move in / out to grip work pieces. (Workmate is the common term ...)

I screw the 2822 star mount to the substantial wood block I have ... place in the "Workmate" and tighten all down. I test it by lifting the whole affair of the floor by the block to make sure all is secure.

I fit the 10x6 prop to the motor and connect up wattmeter, Rx, ESC and then switch on Tx ... throttle hold engaged ... plug in 3S 2100 30C LiPo.

I start to throttle up checking to make sure all is ok ........... No problem, prop is new out of packet and no visible signs of damage etc.

I get to about 70% throttle and one blade let go ... it enbedded itself into the wood block a FULL blade width ... it just sliced in like a sword. No apparent reason why it let go ... it was a reputable E high speed prop.

Of course I immediately shut it all down and looked at that blade sticking out of the wood ........... To remove it - I had to hit it with another block !

The point of this post ? The lethal nature of that blade was so vividly displayed ... A sobering lesson .............

Final bit ... the motor when run up on another prop - with me well clear till I knew prop was OK ... not a viable set-up ... wattmeter showed 347W, 29.4A and I had to shut it all down before motor burnt itself out ... It's actually spec'd for 200W ...

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Old 01-01-2012, 03:21 PM   #2
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Welcome to the thinner & far weaker, man made props.

I have had several " Plastic" props do that & have had the props loosen & fly off. Plastic props, ALL types, Carbon etc. Have LOADS of mixing proportions & procedures by many suppliers. So the chances of break ups is always there. I am pleasantly suprised that the plastics are so good.
Anything made of Carbon Fibre has the nasty danger of giving NO WARNING of approaching failure. It is always a sudden. BOOM!! Done.

Wood props.
Mother Nature ALWAYS has the HIGHEST Quality Control of FINISHED props. The props are thicker edged & do not cut as deeply or as many times in a 1/2 of a second in time.
Electrics with ESCs DO increase power to the prop to keep the rpm a constant 20,000 to 40,000 rpms at 1 HP is doable.

Gas slows down. Electric slashes harder at the same speed.

That is why I wear a full body protection setup when bench testing. FULL flip up face shield from Home Depot, Winter jacket with a flip up hood & a length that covers all my crotch area. Had 1 electric prop & motor just miss everything there.

Laugh at me guys. But at 74. I have seen & DONE lots of close calls to face & eyes.

I now test mainly in a plane tied to a ringed stake in the ground. Had a tail break off at a WOT test. Did not upset me at all. Just a ...." Oh well. " Attitude.
Instead of the cold sweat & how lucky can I be reaction.

Rich
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Old 01-01-2012, 04:21 PM   #3
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Solent,

More info on the prop would be helpful...

Had the prop been used before?.. had it been crashed or subject to a ground strike by any chance?

APCe props had a problem with weak bubs on some sizes. These sometimes let go on higher power set ups after time. This has now been fixed, the later types having a much 'beefier' hub.. Was it an older EPC by any chance? On these props it was usually easy to spot the stress area as the nylon went white as it fatigued (unless the hub was covered by a spinner of course). Is there any sign of the area around the break going white with stress?

But I guess regardless of the prop type there is a lesson to be learned to give all props some respect... Thanks!

Steve
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Old 01-01-2012, 05:03 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
Solent,

More info on the prop would be helpful...

Had the prop been used before?.. had it been crashed or subject to a ground strike by any chance?

APCe props had a problem with weak bubs on some sizes. These sometimes let go on higher power set ups after time. This has now been fixed, the later types having a much 'beefier' hub.. Was it an older EPC by any chance? On these props it was usually easy to spot the stress area as the nylon went white as it fatigued (unless the hub was covered by a spinner of course). Is there any sign of the area around the break going white with stress?

But I guess regardless of the prop type there is a lesson to be learned to give all props dome respect... Thanks!

Steve
Straight out of packet ... totally new - never used before.

It's a well known brand that I will not name - relabelled to Hobby Shop, but known in fact to be same prop - as I believe this to be a rare failure - given the number of props they must sell around the world - it has to happen.

All I will say is this is a prop designed for high rpm direct drive BL ....

There were NO outward signs of any problem / damage ...

My point in posting was to inform that electrics seem less dangerous than IC ....... but this incident shows me as an IC and Electric flyer - No way Hose !!

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Old 01-01-2012, 05:52 PM   #5
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Flexiable " Plastic " props Have a SEVERE PROBLEM with being stored in HOT wharehouses near the ceiling with a bunch piled on top of 1 another.
The DO distort badly over time. Especially 3 bladed props. I had a bunch of GWS 3 blades arrive in August. There was a 3/8" wobble out of alingnment. ALLERC exchanged them with no problems. They actually laid them on a flat surface or put them on a shaft. Because the replacements were very good.
I now store all props on a shaft or on flat surfaces.
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Old 01-01-2012, 07:25 PM   #6
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In the interest of safety I think you should post a picture of the parts and tell the name and model. There is nothing to be gained by keeping it secret and nothing at risk by full disclosure.
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Old 01-01-2012, 08:03 PM   #7
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Did you balance this prop B4 reving it up? An out of balance condition could attribute to this happening.
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Old 01-02-2012, 12:21 AM   #8
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Solent,

I also don't see much point in withholding the brand. You would only be passing on truthful and accurate safety related information which can NEVER be a bad thing. Maybe others have experienced similar failures but if they are not shared then how is anyone going to find out?

One thing that used to be recommended for nylon props in 'the good old days' was to boil them in water for a while before using. This is because Nylon is hygroscopic (absorbs water). When it's allowed to dry out it becomed brittle, when 'hydrated' it's tougher and less likely to fail due to shock loading. Had the prop been stored in a warm dry environment that may have dried out the nylon?

See thye 'Weak point' paragraph on this page: http://www.plastim.co.uk/pa6.htm


Steve
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Old 01-02-2012, 12:48 AM   #9
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Great info there JPF. I never knew that moisture content effected strength and fragility. Thanks.
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Old 01-02-2012, 01:02 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Turner View Post
Great info there JPF. I never knew that moisture content effected strength and fragility. Thanks.
Some plastics are very prone to failure if when they were injection molded the raw material was not dried to specification. Many very strong and tough plastics will be terribly weak if the processing was bad. As part of my work I do materials analysis and failure analysis. Never assume the prop won't break or fail in some way.

When I first started RC I was taught to always stay out of the area off the ends of the prop for this very reason. If you imagine a big disk radiating out of the prop this is the area to stay clear of and be aware of at the field. Make sure no one is lined up with the prop. I like to be behind the airplane when conducting any test.

Also, I have had props spin off the adapter and fly off to the side and kind of forward so this is another reason I stay behind the plane.

Dave

"Gravity: Natures way of telling you to watch your airspeed"
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Old 01-02-2012, 02:08 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by payne9999 View Post
...Never assume the prop won't break or fail in some way..................When I first started RC I was taught to always stay out of the area off the ends of the prop for this very reason...
Yeah, absolutely. Anything that can hurt you, will if you give it the chance.
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Old 01-02-2012, 07:32 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Turner View Post
Yeah, absolutely. Anything that can hurt you, will if you give it the chance.
I've been flying APC-E props exclusively for quite awhile, and have a large collection of many different sizes, up to a maximum 19 inch diameter. None have ever failed on the ground or in flight.

That said, doesn't mean that it can't happen. Those APC-E props are rather stiff, and one letting go can and will do a lot of damage to anything in its path. So when ever powering up any of my models, first a warning is given to any non-modelers around to NEVER stand in line with the prop.

APC-E does have a warning on their web page as to the maximum RPM limits on their various prop sizes, based on tip velocity. Something to be aware of.

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Old 01-02-2012, 10:55 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
Solent,

I also don't see much point in withholding the brand. You would only be passing on truthful and accurate safety related information which can NEVER be a bad thing. Maybe others have experienced similar failures but if they are not shared then how is anyone going to find out?

One thing that used to be recommended for nylon props in 'the good old days' was to boil them in water for a while before using. This is because Nylon is hygroscopic (absorbs water). When it's allowed to dry out it becomed brittle, when 'hydrated' it's tougher and less likely to fail due to shock loading. Had the prop been stored in a warm dry environment that may have dried out the nylon?

See thye 'Weak point' paragraph on this page: http://www.plastim.co.uk/pa6.htm


Steve
One of the reasons for boiling a nylon prop was to release mould tension ... nylon is not actually hygroscopic ... it does attract moisture but to a minute amount only. (I own a Petrochemical laboratory before anyone starts on me !! ).

The prop is a re-branded APC E 10x6 ...

It was checked for balance and no distortions or signs of mishanding / storage etc.

I put it down to a rogue example.

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Old 01-02-2012, 02:27 PM   #14
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I agree with Solent.

I have many APC props. Never a failure like his. Even the best Q C is never perfect all the time.

Honest errors DO happen.
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Old 01-02-2012, 03:21 PM   #15
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Rebranded = fake.

APC does not make or release rebranded props. Spend the extra buck your eyes are worth that.

This is a case of you really do get what you pay for.

Mike
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Old 01-02-2012, 04:39 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
Rebranded = fake.

APC does not make or release rebranded props. Spend the extra buck your eyes are worth that.

This is a case of you really do get what you pay for.

Mike
The shop re-labels them ... not APC ...

I bought this as I knew I would need a reputable prop.

Sorry but the prop IS an APC ...... I did spend the extra buck ....

I have no interest in attacking APC or any other ... as I said previous - I believe this to be a rogue prop .... even the best QC lets something through sooner or later.

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Old 01-02-2012, 08:03 PM   #17
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Why on earth do they just replace a label on a prop bag? Something not adding up here...

While I get that anyone can make a defective unit I find APC to be among the best in the business.

Mike
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Old 01-02-2012, 09:23 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
Why on earth do they just replace a label on a prop bag? Something not adding up here...

While I get that anyone can make a defective unit I find APC to be among the best in the business.

Mike
I also regard APC as premium ... for Electric that is. For Ic - I prefer Masters ... or Taipan's .... based on pylon racing years ago. masters and Taipans were the only props stiff and good enough to take the rpm etc. we were putting through them.

As to relabeling .... the shop is owned by a distribution chain in Former Soviet Union and EVERYTHING gets their label or it doesn't go on their shelves. The only exceptions I noted were IC motors ... All the model boxes, electrics, props, all relabeled.

There is also a twist to this ... in Latvia everything that has safety data, ingredient list, instructions etc. - Latvian translation MUST by law be placed over top of 'foreign text' ... usually the English text is covered up by their sticker.


On the subject of budget props ... I can recc'd props from RCTimer ... they appear same as APC and others ... and I have had excellent performance from them.

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Old 01-02-2012, 10:04 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
nylon is not actually hygroscopic ... it does attract moisture but to a minute amount only. (I own a Petrochemical laboratory before anyone starts on me !! ).
Solent,

So is all the online data about Nylon incorrect? Every online resourece i can find including those who market and manufacture nylon product says it is hygroscopic. According to some sources certain grades of Nylon can absorb up almost 10% of it's own weight in water!




On the subject of re-badged APC props.. Did the prop still have the letters 'APC' cast into the hub? If not then I'd suspect that it was a fake. I believe there are props being made in China that are visually almost identical to APCe thin electric props.

Steve
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:22 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
Solent,

So is all the online data about Nylon incorrect? Every online resourece i can find including those who market and manufacture nylon product says it is hygroscopic. According to some sources certain grades of Nylon can absorb up almost 10% of it's own weight in water!




On the subject of re-badged APC props.. Did the prop still have the letters 'APC' cast into the hub? If not then I'd suspect that it was a fake. I believe there are props being made in China that are visually almost identical to APCe thin electric props.

Steve
It's the level of absorption that is the decider ... full Hygroscopicity is a much higher rate than the limited of nylon. It also depends on the type of nylon - remember Nylon is actually a trade name ...
The type of material composition, temperature, how it was moulded etc. all affect the levels that it would exhibit.

For practical terms it can be taken as a non absorbing material ... technically yes I agree it does. But it would not normally be apparent of the bench.
It's also one of the reasons that it is not advised to be used as a washer or sealing ring ...

I accept that my statement was too generalised aimed at 'man in street' use.

As to the prop - it's long gone in the bin now - so I cannot photo it for you. But it is NOT a thin E prop but one of their stiffer high rpm E jobs.

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Old 01-03-2012, 09:54 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
As to the prop - it's long gone in the bin now - so I cannot photo it for you. But it is NOT a thin E prop but one of their stiffer high rpm E jobs.
Solent, the 'Thin Electric' APC prop IS the stiff high speed e prop. The low RPM prop is the 'Slow Flyer': http://www.apcprop.com/SearchResults.asp?Cat=24

Anyway; did it or did it not have 'APC' cast into the hub? If not then it was certainly a copy which would explain the problem you had with it.

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Old 01-03-2012, 04:36 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
Solent, the 'Thin Electric' APC prop IS the stiff high speed e prop. The low RPM prop is the 'Slow Flyer': http://www.apcprop.com/SearchResults.asp?Cat=24

Anyway; did it or did it not have 'APC' cast into the hub? If not then it was certainly a copy which would explain the problem you had with it.

Steve
Answering nicely ... I know my props as well ... I've been in this hobby for many years and I do not need this .... I was saying it was not one of the flexi slow fly's - but a proper hubbed APC high-speed job ...

To be honest - next time any incident that occurs and I consider can inform - I will not bother.

I've explained ... I've answered questions .. and then I read posts that imply I'm wrong.

Why don't I answer the APC Hub question ? Because I find it inconsiderate and implies that I cannot identify an APC prop when in my hand.

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Old 01-03-2012, 05:09 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
Why don't I answer the APC Hub question ? Because I find it inconsiderate and implies that I cannot identify an APC prop when in my hand.
I have seen copies that were fantastically close...

Sorry you took it that way - but when you talk of re badged you sent me on the "I bet it is not APC" path. Again the copies are remarkably close. I think your cloak and dagger approach may have lead to some of the confusion.

Anything can fail - as I pointed out....even APC...

Mike
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Old 01-03-2012, 05:31 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
I have seen copies that were fantastically close...

Sorry you took it that way - but when you talk of re badged you sent me on the "I bet it is not APC" path. Again the copies are remarkably close. I think your cloak and dagger approach may have lead to some of the confusion.

Anything can fail - as I pointed out....even APC...

Mike
I work in an arena that teaches you to step carefully about naming and shaming a company / manufacturer ... so I apply that as a protective shield. I travel to some rather interesting places that have dire consequences for even slightest infraction ... this may sound OTT - but believe me there are places that people are seriously hurt for less !

My whole point in posting was not to name and shame what is a respected prop company - that given the millions of props they sell - one has failed with me ... we have no idea of it's travel from factory to shop shelf. My point was to highl;ight the sheer energy / destructive capability of a prop shedding a blade ... not to 'educate'already experienced flyers - but those new to the hobby who may not realise just how dangerous these can be.

I apologise if I've taken it badly - but the thread has been diverted from it's primary purpose of informing - to that of determining my ability to identify a clone or not ...

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Old 01-03-2012, 05:37 PM   #25
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I actually enjoyed reading this thread. A good reminder that you can never take safety out of the equation. Far to often we humans become complacent and it can really turn into something scary. As often as I have checked my planes to ensure everything is working. I have often checked it in the house not thinking that the blade could easily come off or break and get someone hurt. I keep it pointed away from obviously but I am not sure if I kept everything or everyone out of the direct line of travel either. Lesson relearned check outside not inside

Happy flying may your crashes be limited and if they are not limited let them be cool.
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