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Break-in on the ground or in the air?

Old 04-10-2012, 01:06 PM
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flymeaway
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Default Break-in on the ground or in the air?

I'm finishing up my winter build and haven't decided if I want to bench run the engine for a few tanks or simply bolt it on and go fly. The engine is a Brillelli 36GT, never run before. I'm not in a hurry to get this engine broke in and can live with reduced power and running a bit rich for a few gallons so I see no reason not to.

Last year I bought a BME 58 Extreme and was told by the owner not to bench run it but rather just throw it in the plane and go fly, which I did. Problem is I only have one flight on it so I have no evidence if it makes a big difference or not.

So what do you do?

Thanks

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Old 04-10-2012, 01:15 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

Air......
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Old 04-10-2012, 01:20 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

Make sure the engine runs OK on the bench and then put it in the air.
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Old 04-10-2012, 01:24 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

Use the gas / oil mix you intend to use long term ... I prefer something in the 32:1 range. Set the needles for normal running .... not rich like you would a glo engine. Make sure the engine is reliable on the ground and go fly. Don't beat the crap out of the engine for a few gallons and thats it. You don't have to baby it but certainly don't abuse it! Enjoy!

Of course make sure the engine is properly cooled in the plane with proper air inlets, outlets and ducting / baffling as needed.
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Old 04-10-2012, 01:26 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

+1
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Old 04-10-2012, 01:52 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

If it's in the air, I say go ahead and beat on it - but just for a second or 2? Then cool it down with something closer to half throttle or less for a minute.

I'd also suggest fly it the first couple of flights without the cowl - but I won't argue that point.
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Old 04-10-2012, 02:19 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

Air
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Old 04-10-2012, 02:26 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

another vote for air.

run engine for a few minutes to get the low and high speed needles set for reliability. Then go fly.
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Old 04-10-2012, 08:05 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

Is this a poll?

Air! After needle adustments mounted in plane. Oil, what you are going to run for the life of the engine.
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Old 04-11-2012, 11:05 AM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

Ya....oops....
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Old 04-11-2012, 12:26 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

There have been few engines I didn't like.
The first one was a GHQ. I never did get it to run.
Next was a Rogers 29 with its wipe timer. It ran for about two hours then it was worn out.
And then there was the Pacemaker 59. Beautiful advertisement and it appeared to be well made. I couldn't get it to run for more than a few pops. I sent it back to the factory and they returned it without comment. I finally beat it to death with a hammer.
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Old 04-11-2012, 01:01 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

I always test run a  engine for a while on the ground in a test bench setup. I then move the engine to the plane and finish the break in on the plane in the air. Many of my engine really require a break in and some are long wearing and it takes a longer time. So flying them makes more sense that running through a couple three gallons of fuel in a test bench.

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Old 04-11-2012, 02:01 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

+1 more for AIR.
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Old 04-11-2012, 06:36 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

You never tried a Thor-B or a Genie,my first good engine was a OR 23.O how about a Deezil-A.
BCCHI (AMA 2500).
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Old 04-11-2012, 08:44 PM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

My first successful engine was Phantom P-30. But I cranked on that engine for a year before I discovered you needed two batteries on the ignition instead of just one.
Next I got a Brown Jr and that set the standard.
I had three Orwicks at one time, one NIB. My mother gave them away to the neighbor kids when I was in college. I wonder how much I could get for them now.
BTW I break my engines in on the ground. I feel I have more control there. Some manufacturers give a specific period you should run it before you fly it.
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Old 04-12-2012, 03:57 AM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

Showing your age
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Old 04-12-2012, 05:42 AM
  #17  
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?


ORIGINAL: BarracudaHockey

Showing your age
Yep-I can even remember when we used to build the airplanes we flew. My first gas job was a Scientific Mercury. It came with a prop blank and you had to carve the airfoil.
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Old 04-12-2012, 08:11 AM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?


ORIGINAL: bcchi
... how about a Deezil-A.
Deezil *barf*[:'(] . I believe mine was well broken in on the bench by the time I decided to quit flipping and flipping and flipping the prop. It never ran.
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Old 04-12-2012, 09:19 AM
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Default RE: Break-in on the ground or in the air?

I also say the air is best for longevity and best power from the engine over time.

The engine on the ground may or may not have the same or less air flow then when in the plane. also the cooling air flow on the cylinder will be way different when in the plane then will be on the ground. With that the cylinder will have different hot spots. the different hots spots are sections of the cylinder will be hotter ( rear of the cylinder "south if looking from above" ) in the plane. on the ground on a stand the hot section will still be near the rear but more toward the exhaust area ( south east oreintation ). this difference will have the ring break in slightly differently than when mounted in the plane. now this may one be 100-200 rpm difference but over the long run it will be more. Now this may be to deep in thinking than most will bother with. lol most of our planes are way over powered anyway. there is the thinking also that breaking in an engine on a hard mounted engine stand will have a different wear patten than when its in the plane which acts like a soft mount ( IE the plane shaking). There are many theory's on the proper break in of a engine and different directions also for if breaking in for max power or longevity.


Just mount on the plane. leave the cowl off (if there is one) start it up for first time on the ground. While its running for first time do you radio range check and failsafe checks. Then refill the tank start engine and fly.
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Old 02-21-2015, 06:27 AM
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I'm a bit curious as to how you sent the Pacemaker 59 back to the factory....my Dad was the designer and manufacturer of this engine, around 1947, and I believe that operation was wrapped up around 1950-51 or so ( I was only 7 at the time!). Did another company takeover the design and distribution? I'm stunned that there are still quite a few modelers who remember this engine. I converted one to glow (couldn't deal with ignition engines at age 9) and used it in several control line planes. Subsequently got a Fox 59.
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Old 02-21-2015, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Truckracer View Post
Use the gas / oil mix you intend to use long term ... I prefer something in the 32:1 range. Set the needles for normal running .... not rich like you would a glo engine. Make sure the engine is reliable on the ground and go fly. Don't beat the crap out of the engine for a few gallons and thats it. You don't have to baby it but certainly don't abuse it! Enjoy!

Of course make sure the engine is properly cooled in the plane with proper air inlets, outlets and ducting / baffling as needed.
I totally agree with this, but would add something. I like to do a few heat cycles on the ground first. Run it and get the needles close to correct. Then continue to run it at varying throttle settings for about two minutes , followed by a blast at full throttle for about 10 or 15 seconds. Then shut it down and let the engine naturally cool all the way down. Do this for several cycles, or one tank of fuel. Now re-tune/finalize your needles, as mentioned, not four stroking rich like a glow engine but set them at a slightly rich two cycle setting. Then fly it!! Don't hover it or Harrier it, but other normal aerobatics, provided you actually use the throttle during them, are good for break in.

Usually after that first tank of fuel you will notice the engine turns over more freely, idles and starts a little better, and holds a needle setting without much change.

I know this is an old thread, but decided to add my "two cents worth" anyway.

AV8TOR

Last edited by av8tor1977; 02-21-2015 at 12:01 PM.
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Old 02-21-2015, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by caribconsult View Post
I'm a bit curious as to how you sent the Pacemaker 59 back to the factory....my Dad was the designer and manufacturer of this engine, around 1947, and I believe that operation was wrapped up around 1950-51 or so ( I was only 7 at the time!). Did another company takeover the design and distribution? I'm stunned that there are still quite a few modelers who remember this engine. I converted one to glow (couldn't deal with ignition engines at age 9) and used it in several control line planes. Subsequently got a Fox 59.
I sent the engine back because I couldnt get it to run. It was 1947.
They sent it back with no note or anything. I still couldnt get it to run.
At the time I had experience with running several engines. I think it was about my 12th engine.
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Old 02-21-2015, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by av8tor1977 View Post
I totally agree with this, but would add something. I like to do a few heat cycles on the ground first. Run it and get the needles close to correct. Then continue to run it at varying throttle settings for about two minutes , followed by a blast at full throttle for about 10 or 15 seconds. Then shut it down and let the engine naturally cool all the way down. Do this for several cycles, or one tank of fuel. Now re-tune/finalize your needles, as mentioned, not four stroking rich like a glow engine but set them at a slightly rich two cycle setting. Then fly it!! Don't hover it or Harrier it, but other normal aerobatics, provided you actually use the throttle during them, are good for break in.

Usually after that first tank of fuel you will notice the engine turns over more freely, idles and starts a little better, and holds a needle setting without much change.

I know this is an old thread, but decided to add my "two cents worth" anyway.

AV8TOR
I really think you should follow the instructions that came with the engine.
If they say to runu it on the ground, run it on the ground
If they say fly, fly it.
They have a lot more experience with that particular engine than anyone on this forum.
I had a Brillelly I dont remember that it came with any instructions.
I ran it on the ground for awhile then flew it. It didnt seem to hurt it any
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Old 02-21-2015, 01:01 PM
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Well, I have 45 years experience running, modifying, and repairing engines from .010 cubic inches to 600 cubic inches. I guess that's worth something....

I built my first complete engine when I was 12, and did my first professional engine overhaul by myself, (a V/8) when I was 14. The engine was still in service 16 years later when the car was finally junked. Sometimes I personally agree with manufacturers recommendations, sometimes I don't. But that's just me....

AV8TOR

Last edited by av8tor1977; 02-22-2015 at 11:26 AM.
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Old 02-21-2015, 02:29 PM
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If you think about it,all of those years of experience mean very little. The metals used today are different from the ones used before. It may be the same metal but its possessing could be very different. Unless you know exactly what metal,processing and fitting he used you will better off heeding his advice.
I got my first model engine in about 1939
I have overhauled motorcycle,automobile and aircraft engines. Along the way I picked up an engineering degree.
An engineering education teaches one overall truth:You cannot be the absolute expert on anything.
I follow the makers instructions because he may have some process or technique that I have no knowledge of.
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