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HomeScale✈️AircraftScale HeliScale Helicopter Main Discussion › Tail blade balancing??
02-29-2012 11:13 AM  9 years ago
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Austin, Texas

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Tail blade balancing??
Hey Guys,

Got a question for all of you out there running multi blade tails. Currently, I am working with a 5 blade main on a 450 sized heli. I am using a Skookum for main blade stability and feel pretty good about my tracking and vibes through the main, as I just corrected a resonence (sp probably off..Momma didn't raise an English major). I found two of my main control links slightly out of length with the other three. All is good now as I did slow run-ups upto 50% of the power band on my test jig (I'll have to post on how to make one later, might be of ineterest to some of you on how to build one for relatively cheap).

Now on to my question. Since I am running a 5 blade on the main, and in leu of playing around with gearing to the tail (I'm using the torque tube instead of the belt), I have decided to run a 3 bladed tail. I know she isn't exactly scale, but it does answer tail authority questions, and I don't have to try to play around with blade length (i.e. shave down a 500 size blade to fit the 450 tail hub).

What I am curious about is, how or what is the preferred methodology to balance out your tail blades, as to reduce the amount of tail vibes/resonance when spinning? I know there are some out there, that will question my focus on the tail blades at this size, however, I do wish to get her as "smooth as glass" on the rotors, because as you all know in the smaller scales, even little vibes and such are amplified /more appearent/ a factor to deal with due to the size of the heli and what does have an affect.

I really don't care what size that you might be running, as I will adapt your method to my application if possible, just curious about what you guys use. I do have access to lead tape to affix weight to the blades if needed. My inital assumption into this would be you would basically treat the tail like the main, and weigh the blades initially, find the CG of each balde and compensate any weight differential to the lighter blade/s at the CG point with the tape. You would then attempt to track them as best you could using colored tape on the leading edge of the blade to verify tracking of the tail blades, much the same way we do for the mains. However, since our linkage on the tail to affect pitch is pretty universal (meaning you do not have adjustabe linkage to each blade), your only avenue to address this would be weight differentail of the blade. The exception to this would be if you were to "re-invent the wheel" and come up with a "useable" pitch rod for each tail blade to affect individual balde pitch that would be independant of the major pitch changes that occur to the baldes when commanding the tail. In the scale that we are dealing with however, I just don't see that as a "feasable" option here, as the distance involved is very small (i.e. the distance from the tail slider to the til rotor blade grips).

Any thoughts or ideas/epiphanies are welcome, as I am open to suggestions. At present I see no major catastrophies with my current tail condition, but after playing around with my main blade issue, it got me thinking about the tail, since she is is technically an even smaller multi blade rotor head.

Thanks for taking the hour that it took to read my lengthy question, I do apologize. However, I just wanted to state what I was after and my thoughts..(besides, it's a casualty of my work environment, as I work in a very technical field and am surrounded by Engineering types all day long, who are very anal in nature).

Best reagrds, and thanks in advance for any suggestions,

Austin, Tx
I used to be normal, but then I started flying heli's....
02-29-2012 06:24 PM  9 years ago


Henderson, Nevada

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Balancing the tail as you described is too anal for me and I don't feel it necessary especially on a 450. I balance the main blades similar to what you described but not the tail.

I simply take the tail rotor off the shaft and put it on my balancer so it free spins. The heavy blade will consistently end up on the bottom, I then lighten that blade or make the other one heavier. I either sand or add tape depending on the tail blade material. This also works for multi blade tails.

You may only need to switch the blades around to the other grip.

You also have to make sure the blades are spread out evenly.

This method has worked for me for years.
fly til its dry
02-29-2012 06:29 PM  9 years ago

rrElite Veteran

Sanford, NC

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I agree with Spiderco, I've never taken the time to balance the tail blades that way and it seems to be unnecessary on the 450 size. I guess if it gives peace of mind then it would be worth it. Test it out on the balancer and see if the blades are way out? It's been my experience that the better brand quality carbon blades don't even need to be balanced as they are already damn near perfect. Couldn't hurt anything to check it anyway I guess
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HomeScale✈️AircraftScale HeliScale Helicopter Main Discussion › Tail blade balancing??

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