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Tachometer, how important is it to have one?

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Tachometer, how important is it to have one?

Old 07-24-2022, 10:37 AM
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2W0EPI
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Default Tachometer, how important is it to have one?

Hi Folks,

Having just built my first plane, I'm now ready to try and start the engine, however I'm beginning to think that a tacho would come in handy. Our ears and eyes give us a good approximation to what is happening with your engine. Using a tacho will be an excellent accurate indicator of rpm and tuning, in particular glow, will indicate the highest and lowest of your throttle response curve. You can find maximum rpm with different props etc,

I can see a tacho would come in very handy indeed. Currently, you can pickup a tacho for around 20 new.
Old 07-25-2022, 08:30 AM
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Steve Collins
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I never found one important for the reasons you mention. They are very important when racing in order to exact the maximum performance from an engine.
Old 07-25-2022, 09:17 AM
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2W0EPI
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Originally Posted by Steve Collins View Post
IThey are very important when racing in order to exact the maximum performance from an engine.
Isn't that good enough reason to invest in a tacho costing less than 20?
Old 07-25-2022, 11:34 AM
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Propworn
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I bought a tac years and years ago with my first four stroke as I was led to believe it was a necessity. Used it off and on for one summer. Removed the batteries and put it in the bottom of my flight box in the original cardboard box where it remains to this day. It still works as new I just don't feel the need for it.
Old 07-25-2022, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by 2W0EPI View Post
Hi Folks,

Having just built my first plane, I'm now ready to try and start the engine, however I'm beginning to think that a tacho would come in handy. Our ears and eyes give us a good approximation to what is happening with your engine. Using a tacho will be an excellent accurate indicator of rpm and tuning, in particular glow, will indicate the highest and lowest of your throttle response curve. You can find maximum rpm with different props etc,

I can see a tacho would come in very handy indeed. Currently, you can pickup a tacho for around 20 new.
Completely agree! Have one in my flightbox for years and use it time to time to check prop rpms.
Old 07-25-2022, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Steve Collins View Post
I never found one important for the reasons you mention. They are very important when racing in order to exact the maximum performance from an engine.
Originally Posted by Propworn View Post
I bought a tac years and years ago with my first four stroke as I was led to believe it was a necessity. Used it off and on for one summer. Removed the batteries and put it in the bottom of my flight box in the original cardboard box where it remains to this day. It still works as new I just don't feel the need for it.
I agree with these two posts. If perchance I somehow needed every ounce of thrust, sure I'd break out the one that resides in my flight box (with it batteries removed like Prop mentioned) , but, I don't build my planes to the ragged edge of needing to push the engine to it's limits. In fact, I tend to overpower my planes a wee bit specifically so that they fly very nicely with the engine operating between around 60 to 75% of it's maximum power. You will likely find that after a few years in the hobby your ears will be the best tach you've got, our small engines have their own particular sound when you've found "The sweet spot"

As a last thought I'll leave you with this;

Each and everything flying in this hobby, and in life in general, doesn't always NEED to be "Balls to the wall" screaming to be having fun, sometimes it's cool to simply enjoy the flying VS worrying about those last couple hundred RPMs
Old 07-25-2022, 12:26 PM
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They are great fun for rpm experiments! Good flight box tool.
Old 07-27-2022, 06:58 AM
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How important is a tach? Impossible to answer if the proficiency of the user is unknown.
In the right hands it can be a very useful tool, in the wrong hands it leads to broken engines due to excessive lean runs.
Old 07-27-2022, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by 1967brutus View Post
How important is a tach? Impossible to answer if the proficiency of the user is unknown.
In the right hands it can be a very useful tool, in the wrong hands it leads to broken engines due to excessive lean runs.
I tend to think it assists in identifying the right prop for the motor also.
Old 07-27-2022, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by 1967brutus View Post
in the wrong hands it leads to broken engines due to excessive lean runs.
An engine run by amateur, like myself, will not rock any boats by purchase of low cost Force engines, if it wears out in 3 months or so I shall not even get my screwdriver out to change individually the worn parts, so I have a complete Force 46 ready for the next run in, costing me 85.I'll sell the first worn out engine at auction on Ebay.

Last edited by 2W0EPI; 07-27-2022 at 11:01 AM.
Old 07-27-2022, 11:11 AM
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Test Tool, who wouldn't want one?
Old 07-27-2022, 06:25 PM
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Tachometer, E-meter/Clamp meter and digital scales come very handy to keep my log books in order.

Easy way to keep the track of things.

Clamp meter, a handy gadget.

I couldn't live with out these!
Old 07-28-2022, 03:23 AM
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Originally Posted by TheEdge View Post
I tend to think it assists in identifying the right prop for the motor also.
Well, RPM data does, but not a handheld tach. You need inflight data for that.
A handheld tach can point in the right direction, I'd say that.
Old 07-28-2022, 04:53 AM
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Originally Posted by 1967brutus View Post
Well, RPM data does, but not a handheld tach. You need inflight data for that.
A handheld tach can point in the right direction, I'd say that.

Ha, an old fashioned Sign Post versus an on board GPS.
Old 07-29-2022, 04:31 AM
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I don't use it that much because i'm still have to figure out other things
Old 07-29-2022, 05:38 PM
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This was just fun and reason enough to have it!


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