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Old Dec 25, 2010, 02:09 PM
"Unnecessary Necessity"
coriolan's Avatar
Canada, BC, Vancouver
Joined Sep 2006
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Cool
1/2A starter

For those interested, Great Hobbies still has some LiteMachine 1/2A starters for $ 21 (as clearance):
http://www.greathobbies.com/producti...od_id=LMH21541
Don't know how many they have but its cheaper than the Sullivan:
http://www.greathobbies.com/productinfo/?prod_id=SUL598
Personally I still use an old Astroflight which is ok for 1/2A (.049/.051)but a bit weak for .10 size. For that I use an home made unit based on a Mabuchi 750 size.
Just checked their "in-stock" numbers and there is only one left!
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 06:48 AM
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Joined Sep 2010
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I have the lite machines starter. It is very nice.

Does anyone know if the sullivan rubber insert fits the lite machines cone?

My rubber insert is very worn and I am wondering if I will have to find a giant eraser to carve a new one from!
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 11:16 AM
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Beaumont tx
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Use an appropriate size rubber hose from any auto parts store..

howell
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 04:50 PM
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United States, MI, Commerce Charter Township
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For those that haven't used these starters, they are very well made-but what separates them from other starters I have used is that they spin the Bejeezus out of 1/2A sized motors. The 10-15,000rpm listed in the ad isn't an exaggeration, the motors just SING when you touch them off with one of these bad boys.

I have been powering mine with a 3 cell 800mah LiPoly battery. The two together weigh nothing and there is no cord between the starter and battery for the prop to catch if you keep the leads short.
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Old Jan 04, 2011, 02:52 PM
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Be very careful starting Cox engines with a starter. I'm not trying to start a debate here since I'm guilty of doing it hundreds of times with a Sullivan Hornet. Heck, there's even a youtube flying video showing me using a large Sullivan on a Medallion .09 several years ago. Last year, though, I managed to break 4 or 5 .049 connecting rods with the Hornet so I now handstart all my 1/2A engines and only use starters on .09s and larger when needed. With some practice and proper tuning, it's usually pretty easy.
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Old Jan 05, 2011, 02:48 AM
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Sweden
Joined Jan 2008
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Most engines (except the TT 07GP) have enough room for a spring starter, and the spring starters from Norvel are easily adapted to fit other engines, like the Cox TD etc. It is also fairly easy to make ones own from music wire.

I've never owned any electric starter...
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Old Jan 05, 2011, 06:46 AM
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USA, TX, Grapevine
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We needed to use Electric starters with the .049's used in pylon racing. We were using pressurized fuel tanks. Normally a special designed backplate fitting was installed in the engine. Thus you would have a hard time firing one up for the race heat, if you tried to start it without an electric starter.

My Astro flight 1/2a starter uses a Mabuchi 550 motor inside. So yeah these starters can really turn up some RPMs. But the 550 motor is pretty common and easy to replace if you manage to wear one out.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 08:02 PM
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I received the 1/2A starter from Great Hobbies today. Unfortunately, it has a heli isert.

Does anyone know where to purchase the spinner and prop-nut inserts?

Bernie
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 09:36 PM
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Canada
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Years (decades??) ago I bought an Astro Flight 1/2A electric starter.
Used it twice.. Both times it burnt out / damaged the thrust bit part of the Prop driver on my pore Cox black widows.
POS was my initial and continued assesment of the thing. Still have it though. Only a v few minutes run time on it :-)
The crap rubber 'spinner' insert had little to NO grip on the prop hub (this being dry with No Castor oil on it) consequently using enough pressure to force power transfer (actually spin the prop) ruined the thrust washer and damaged the end of the crankcase. Seems Astro wasn't clever enough to provide / think of a slotted drive end to try and grip the prop rather than rely on non existant friction on the cox 'spinner'.
With the 20/20 vision of hindsight.. We really were sold a LOT of crap in and around our 049's.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 10:30 PM
"Unnecessary Necessity"
coriolan's Avatar
Canada, BC, Vancouver
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Don't know how you managed to burn two motors in an Astroflight 1/2A starter! Mine still has the original motor and rubber insert! Even my larger home made starter for .10/.15 engines still run on a surplus Mabuchi, most engines in proper condition start within second with a starter so there isnt much wear on the motor brushes. To push on the spinner hard enough to wear the thrust bearing on a reedy indicate a rather ham fisted way to handle things!
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 10:33 PM
"Unnecessary Necessity"
coriolan's Avatar
Canada, BC, Vancouver
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xenalook View Post
I received the 1/2A starter from Great Hobbies today. Unfortunately, it has a heli isert.

Does anyone know where to purchase the spinner and prop-nut inserts?

Bernie
LiteMachine is long gone, maybe you can have an adapter made to use with airplane engines.
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Old Jan 08, 2011, 10:30 AM
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USA, TX, Grapevine
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Bare, I don't know how you managed to have such bad luck with the Astro Flight starter.
My first example goes way back to circa 1981 or so. The second one I got around 1991 or so. I still have them and they still work just fine.
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Old Jan 08, 2011, 10:56 PM
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@zenalook

My lite machines starter also had a heli insert.
What you can do is take a new, sharp exacto blade and shave down the lip at the top of the rubber insert. Work your way around the insert slicing off the thicker rubber part until it is the same diameter as the part that fits inside the aluminum cone. Make sure you put the "front" of the insert onto a table and slice down a thin slice each time as you work around it.
Now, you can turn the rubber insert around and stick it into the aluminum cone backwards. There is a nice hole in the end that normaly goes toward the starter (this hole clears the nut that holds the aluminum cone on).

The hole perfectly wedges onto the small aluminum spinners on Cox and Paw motors.

This process sounds difficult but only took me about 15 minutes.

Best of luck.
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Old Jan 09, 2011, 01:48 AM
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USA, WA, Ellensburg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bare View Post
Years (decades??) ago I bought an Astro Flight 1/2A electric starter.
Used it twice.. Both times it burnt out / damaged the thrust bit part of the Prop driver on my pore Cox black widows.


Quote:
Originally Posted by coriolan View Post
Don't know how you managed to burn two motors in an Astroflight 1/2A starter! Mine still has the original motor and rubber insert!
I purchased one of the AstroFlight 1/2A starters in the early 80's also. I still have it and the original insert and still works well for me. I have yet to burn up a 1/2A motor using that starter. The AstroFlight 1/2A starter is a lot handier for the small motors than the huge starters for the bigger motors. Since I fly 1/2A and A the big starter is not used much.
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Old Jan 16, 2011, 08:28 AM
Will fly for food
Maryland
Joined Sep 2004
8,424 Posts
If you are planning on using a starter on a regular basis, Bernie has the stell washer thatn go under the prop hub to prevent the Al on Al galling that can occur.
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