Ok. Quickly figured out my gear problem. It wasn't collapsing, it was cycling!
Last night I had mounted the wing before packing the van and have everything ready to go in the morning. I did multiple visual checks to make sure all my servo extensions were tucked away in the channels on each side of the fan housing. Before loading up, I taxied it around in the street in front of the house. Our street is not real smooth so it's a bit of a bouncy taxi test.
When I got home from the field today to debug the problem I powered up the rx with my rx pack but could not get the problem retract to collapse. Then I hooked up the lipo that powers the fan and eased into the throttle. As soon as the fan started to rotate the retract started cycling up and down. Hmmmm. I looked through the intake and could see one of the servo extentions hanging in front of the fan.
I unplugged the lipo and left the rx powered on. Took off the wing and could get the retract to cycle just by wiggling the wires. Turns out the fan ate half the plastic extension connector leaving all three wires bare. My guess is taxing around our not so smooth street caused the extension to work it's way out and into the front of the fan. Good news is it's an easy fix.
Not so good news. This is what my rotor looks like now. The damage doesn't look to bad but I'm not so sure I want to run the fan up again without replacing the rotor.