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free tailwheels

Old 12-21-2003, 07:55 PM
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khlash
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Default free tailwheels

No I'm Not giving them away..heh i have a question...

How well does a tailwheel thats free to spin (i.e. not directly connected to the rudder) work? Ive a 60 size Ultrastick and I was wondering if the air over the rudder only would be enough to steer properly. This would be on both grass and on a runway.
Old 12-21-2003, 08:21 PM
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feihu-RCU
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Default RE: free tailwheels

In general, NO problem on grass; BIG problem on a smooth runway.
Old 12-21-2003, 09:06 PM
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LouW
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Default RE: free tailwheels

I have one installation where the rudder is castoring but is connected to two centering springs. There is no direct connection to the rudder. It works well on pavement.
Old 12-21-2003, 09:42 PM
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khlash
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Default RE: free tailwheels

ORIGINAL: feihu-RCU

In general, NO problem on grass; BIG problem on a smooth runway.
What is the problem? Too sensitive? Not sensitive enough?
Old 12-22-2003, 02:17 AM
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CafeenMan
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Default RE: free tailwheels

ORIGINAL: khlash

ORIGINAL: feihu-RCU

In general, NO problem on grass; BIG problem on a smooth runway.
What is the problem? Too sensitive? Not sensitive enough?
uncontrollable castoring is the problem. The aircraft is all over the place until it's going fast enough for the rudder to be effective which makes it very hard to taxi.
Old 12-22-2003, 09:06 AM
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Default RE: free tailwheels

I have found that it works ok on calm days but with the wind blowing, you can't steer and the plane just wind vains.
Old 12-22-2003, 11:03 AM
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Default RE: free tailwheels

I have a 4*60 and have the rudder and tailwheel work together. When I first built the plane I was using a spring from the tail wheel assembly that was glued into the rudder. (I used a Sullivan Tail Wheel and it was one of the springs included) It was ok on days where the wind was mild. However, in windy days, the rudder was useless. I recommend having a direct wheel to rudder connection. It is less squirrelly when I am a low speeds during taxi. Same goes for my ultra stick 60 as well.
Old 12-22-2003, 04:50 PM
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Default RE: free tailwheels

A spring connection to the rudder will work (the stiffer the better in general), but no connection to the rudder whatsoever will get interesting on asphault with a little wind. Ask me how I know
Old 12-22-2003, 05:48 PM
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LouW
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Default RE: free tailwheels

The picture is the spring-centered tailwheel on my Easy Sport. It works great. The advantages are:
1. No direct connection to the servo prevents shock and possible damage to the gears.
2. If the tailwheel is directly connected, depending on the geometry, either it will be too sensitive on take off or it will not allow tight turns when taxiing. The spring centered castoring tailwheel responds as conditions require.
3. On take off the propeller slipstream is always adequate to provide control from the beginning.
4. It is a simpler installation than a steerable one.

I have eight aircraft, all tailwheel, with fixed, steerable, and spring centered castoring. I don’t have any trouble with any configuration. They all work. (I usually fly from a paved runway and sometimes grass)
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Old 12-22-2003, 06:27 PM
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feihu-RCU
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Default RE: free tailwheels

Altho not a FREE tailwheel, I like your concept.
Feihu
Old 12-23-2003, 06:37 AM
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Geistware
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Default RE: free tailwheels

I have never seen that concept as well. While not steerable, it will keep the plan straight and it should not be too sensative to rudder input.
Old 12-23-2003, 10:31 PM
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GalenB
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Default RE: free tailwheels

ORIGINAL: khlash

No I'm Not giving them away..heh i have a question...

How well does a tailwheel thats free to spin (i.e. not directly connected to the rudder) work? Ive a 60 size Ultrastick and I was wondering if the air over the rudder only would be enough to steer properly. This would be on both grass and on a runway.
I did this very thing on my 40 sized US. I went with a simple free castering tailwheel and it worked great! I only fly off of grass so I cannot comment on how well it will work on pavement...
Old 12-24-2003, 02:41 AM
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Capgains
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Default RE: free tailwheels

If you have that baby free wheeling, you have to be careful that it doesn't flutter around as you pick up speed..... you know like a shopping cart wheel. Because if it does, you could be looking at a serious clean up on isle 5, and bring a mop.

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