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HelicopterMain Discussion › Belt vs Shaft Drive Tail Rotor
05-21-2007 12:21 AM  10 years agoPost 1
LECz3

rrNovice

San Juan, Puerto​Rico

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Can some body provide the pro and cons (cost, performance, durability, maintenance) for each system and which should be better?

I’m looking for a new 60 helicopter and the final candidates have different tail driven.

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05-21-2007 12:35 AM  10 years agoPost 2
BarracudaHockey

rrMaster

Jacksonville FL

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Belt, doesnt break in every crash, cheaper, no setting gear lash.
Cons: Bleeds more energy in an autorotation, need to keep up with belt tension.

Torque tube, more precise in flight (we aren't talking a large margin here)less drag in an auto (same thing, not alot but some).

Cons: if the tail rotor hits the dirt you are replacing a torque tube or gears.

Andy
AMA 77227
http://www.jaxrc.com

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05-21-2007 12:41 AM  10 years agoPost 3
RappyTappy

rrProfessor

North Denver,​Colorado

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Belt drive:

Pros - Simple and easy to set up. Cost of the system is less
than the torque tube.
Cons - Sligtly more drag on the rotorsystem than torque tubes.

Torque Tube:

Pros - When set up right, it is the smoothest for the
rotorsystem, giving better auto performance (more hangtime)
Cons - More complicated to set up, cost of gears and torque tube*

*Unless of course you are able to use an arrow shaft for a torque tube, they only cost $5 give or take.

Personally I prefer the torque tube, but for shear day to day durability and simplicity, the belt drive is hard to beat.

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05-21-2007 12:42 AM  10 years agoPost 4
ErichF

rrElite Veteran

Sutton, NH

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They both turn the tail rotor. That's all you need to worry about. It's not a deciding factor in choosing a heli, the differences are that small. If you expect to use the heli to learn new 3D manuevers, I guess the belt drive tail has the one major advantage in repair costs and labor.

BTW, I used to be a die-hard shaft drive flyer...until I got an X-Spec and found out I was kidding myself. Only the pros can see the real difference in autos with a properly adjusted belt drive tail.

Erich

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05-21-2007 11:45 AM  10 years agoPost 5
S Bell

rrApprentice

Nova Scotia Canada

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A beginner is better off with a belt drive as are those basic sport flyers who hate maintenance. Like someone mentioned gears can be easily toasted with ground strikes and correct gear mesh can be a tedious process for the new guys. Too tight it melts plastic gears, too loose and teeth strip. Misplace the shaft position in the tail boom and load a gear axial and plastic gears will go south. Sometimes bearings break loose off the shaft during installation into the tail boom thus shifting position.

For a seasoned flyer the shaft is better having lower friction and good reliability. A seasoned flyer can intentionally strip tail gears inflight through abuse.

The difference in real world performance between the two is minor for many people.

Stephen

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05-21-2007 04:43 PM  10 years agoPost 6
airboss

rrElite Veteran

OC ,california

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VS

belt is very durable and torque tube is not.i have 2 similar helis set up both ways, the TT heli breaks teeth off on hard landings and the belt never breaks on hard landings,such as autos.

Urukay HPS3 KSE 700 HPS3

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05-21-2007 10:14 PM  10 years agoPost 7
gordonre

rrApprentice

Ireland

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For a beginner I would certainly recommend as mentioned above that the the belt option be used.

However, I find it easier with the tube to remove the boom and not have to worry about undoing gearbox etc to free belt.

Gordon

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05-21-2007 10:46 PM  10 years agoPost 8
airboss

rrElite Veteran

OC ,california

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tubing

the tube is easyer to work on but durability is the issue.

Urukay HPS3 KSE 700 HPS3

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05-22-2007 06:21 AM  10 years agoPost 9
bellecrank

rrVeteran

Canada

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shaft - much more efficient,precise and less maintenance (no reseting tension etc.), but more costly. This is why most manufacturers go from belt drive systems on their lower cost "sport " helis (e.g. their 30's and 50's and their "sport" 60/90) but abandon the belt drive and go torque tube drive on their top 60/90 helis.

And a torque tube drive that has a dogbone type of coupling both at the front and at the rear are relatively crash resistant.

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05-22-2007 12:52 PM  10 years agoPost 10
ErichF

rrElite Veteran

Sutton, NH

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Could you then explain why it is that one of the world's premier competition helicopters, the Caliber 90, uses a belt drive tail? This, on a kit that's $2500?

I'm just asking

Erich

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05-22-2007 12:58 PM  10 years agoPost 11
rexefekt

rrNovice

Byron Bay, Australia

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belt is quieter mechanically than TT. The cal90, sylphide etc are f3c helis which need to be really quiet and smooth so belt is the go for those guys.

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05-22-2007 01:03 PM  10 years agoPost 12
bigdad390

rrVeteran

East. Liverpool,​Ohio

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LOL, As I said in the last Belt vs Torque Tube Thread, I remember these same aurguments 20 years ago.

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05-22-2007 06:24 PM  10 years agoPost 13
oldfart

rrProfessor

Vancouver, Canada

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EricF,

The Caliber 90 is designed specifically for FAI/F3C competition and not for extreme 3D competition. It is a very competitive FAI/F3C Competition helicopter, not so in 3D competition.

The demands on the tail rotor drive system in F3C, compared to that of 3D extreme, are substantially less.

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05-23-2007 09:23 AM  10 years agoPost 14
Jimmi

rrKey Veteran

Southern Ca. U.S.A.

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I have never had problems with a belt, knock on wood. Torque tube I had more problems with. Doesn't mean one is better then the other. Just had better luck with a belt Jimmi

A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kick boxing

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