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Old Mar 23, 2010, 07:24 PM
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Diesels for control line stunt

Over the past 20 years or so I have flown many flights of Old Time Stunt airplanes with diesel engines. Mostly ST G20-15, Tower 40 with RJL head, and ED Racer, plus a dozen or so others for smaller numbers of flights. So here is what I think about it this week.

A diesel runs best lean and with low compression. I adjust the engine so that it runs smoothly while flying level and does not change speed in maneuvers. If the engine misses in maneuvers, it is a hair lean, If it slows in maneuvers, it is overcompressed. I like to get the needle and the compression right and leave them alone. This means I may have to use a starter.

In stunt we need consistent run times. This is why we leave the needle alone. On a diesel a very small change can drastically change the run time. I evaluate the compression by how the airplane flew, and the color of the exhaust. The airplane should fly to suit me and the exhaust should be from honey color to clear.

Diesels are idiosyncratic. One may have to have increased compression to start easily, another may need decreased compression. A major problem for glow plug fliers is that diesels flood and a flooded diesel is very difficult to start. With an unknown diesel, I don't hook up the fuel line. I give a head prime with the piston up and start flipping. If no joy in a half dozen flips I turn the compression in 1/8 turn. I turn the engine over to see that it is not hydro locked, and repeat flipping. I do this until the diesel will run out the prime. Then I hook up the fuel line, open the needle a couple of turns and suck fuel up to the spraybar. Another head prime, a few more flips and it should be running. It should be overcompressed and I back compression off until it quits running faster, then I turn the needle in a little. I fiddle with the needle and compression to get it to run like I want. For the old iron and steel diesels, I run them in under compressed and rich, gradually working up to running like I want. The more a diesel runs, the better it will run.

I'll try to answer any questions I can.
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Old Mar 23, 2010, 11:00 PM
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Keremeos, BC Canada
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I concur. I got rid of my last glow engine (except Cox) in 1968, and have never looked back. I fly 15-19 diesels on 52' (FAI) lines, and get everything out of a stunt model that a 35 on 70' lines gets. In fact, I built a little Biplane from a magazine plan, turns out another guy built the same model. He had a Fox 35 on 70', I had an ETA 15 on 52' lines. He flew his first, and it went fine. I flew mine, and he told me he was gonna go stomp on his...

As far as running better with time is concerned, I had a ED249 that performed just a little bit better with each flight: this was in the 80s, and the engine had been continuously in use since 1953. Howzzat for performance?
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Old Mar 24, 2010, 05:19 PM
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Canada, ON, Hamilton
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Thanks Jim. That should also work just as well for RC use.
A nice summary.
Iíve posted your comments on the diesel thread.
John

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...054975&page=55
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Old Mar 24, 2010, 11:01 PM
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Adelaide, South Australia
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Jim
How about some comments on your experience with running a standard glow engine on diesel fuel? Does it work well enough for CL stunt?
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Old Mar 25, 2010, 09:47 AM
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I only ran a couple of K&B 4011's on the bench. I got the same RPM on an APC 11 x 5 both glow and diesel. Running glow engines on diesel fuel is, I think, a fairly common practice among South African stunt fliers. I don't see any reason why it wouldn't work. When people come on forums talking about, maybe, a diesel conversion, I suggest they first try running their glow engine on diesel fuel. I don't think I have made much impression.
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Old Mar 25, 2010, 12:45 PM
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Umkomaas, South Africa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Thomerson View Post
I only ran a couple of K&B 4011's on the bench. I got the same RPM on an APC 11 x 5 both glow and diesel. Running glow engines on diesel fuel is, I think, a fairly common practice among South African stunt fliers. I don't see any reason why it wouldn't work. When people come on forums talking about, maybe, a diesel conversion, I suggest they first try running their glow engine on diesel fuel. I don't think I have made much impression.
We tried the glow motor on diesel but the run was inconsistent, at the moment Keith Renicle has a MVVS .49 with a diesel head he made and has flown it in two world champs, you need to be able to set the compression for different weather conditions.
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Old Mar 25, 2010, 03:13 PM
Mike A.
Des Moines, IA
Joined Oct 2005
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I would wonder if the glow plug is actually doing anything with diesel fuel rather than glow fuel in the combustion chamber - much of the glow plugs effectiveness is generated by the catalytic action of methanol on the platinum in the element. It would be interesting to compare the running characteristics with and without a battery connected. If the glow plug is not glowing or in some manner aiding ignition, then all you really have is a diesel with no contra-piston (like the Drone Diesel of old).
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Old Mar 25, 2010, 03:59 PM
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I tried two K&B 4011's. On one, after leaving the battery on for maybe 20 sec., it would run very smooth. The other one, on disconnect of the battery, would run under compressed. Reconnect the battery and it ran like the other engine. I think it had a thicker head gasket, but never checked. I also happened to try a Tower 40 with a modified very low compression glow head. It would run smooth with the glow plug connected, but ran about as under compressed as one could imagine without the glow plug connected.
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Old Mar 26, 2010, 06:59 AM
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East Anglia, UK
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeainia View Post
I would wonder if the glow plug is actually doing anything with diesel fuel rather than glow fuel in the combustion chamber - much of the glow plugs effectiveness is generated by the catalytic action of methanol on the platinum in the element. It would be interesting to compare the running characteristics with and without a battery connected. If the glow plug is not glowing or in some manner aiding ignition, then all you really have is a diesel with no contra-piston (like the Drone Diesel of old).
it sure helps starting tho. Most car and truck diesels have gloplugs to start em of one sort of another.

Instead of ether in the fuel!
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Old Mar 26, 2010, 02:27 PM
Geeez.....Really???
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Southern IN
Joined Dec 2008
192 Posts
Paw 099

I had always wanted a diesel to tinker with and I came across a PAW 099 at a swap meet. I paid $35 for it and it looks nice, not overly used or dirty. Even came with a prop and spinner. I am looking forward to putting it on a nice bipe or stunter.
Anyone have suggestions? Models and line length?
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Old Mar 27, 2010, 05:15 AM
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Elyria, Ohio
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Any control line plane such as a Ringmaster Jr. or Flightstreak Jr. and some .012"x52' lines will work with an .09 diesel . My favorite set up was the Super Tigre G31 .09 and a Flightstreak Jr. It few just like any .15 powered plane .

Mike 1484
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Old Apr 28, 2010, 05:39 PM
Grider Pirate
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USA, NV, Las Vegas
Joined Nov 2006
52 Posts
Tanks for Diesels

Some years ago (late 90's) I got hooked into "Vintage English Diesel Combat" (try saying that quickly!). We tried a number of tank types, but eventually settled on a "Chicken Hopper" design. It would run dead steady until about 5 seconds before it was dry. I ended up being the club "tank maker" for the few of us that flew U/C.
What are the stunt guys using?

PS where can I get some fuel appropriate for my PAW .19 CT (plain bearing)
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Old Apr 28, 2010, 07:09 PM
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I use uniflow metal tanks. Davis Diesel, Carlson Imports, Eric Clutton (Dr. diesel), Aerodyne and Red Max have all sold diesel fuel in the past. I'm presently using Eric Clutton's fuel and have used a lot of Davis fuel in the past.
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Old May 07, 2010, 10:57 AM
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Canada
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Diesel Info here:
http://www3.bc.sympatico.ca/dieselco...age_diesel.htm
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Old May 07, 2010, 12:14 PM
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Tucson, Az
Joined Feb 2007
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Diesels

Hey they are fun, some are quite nice. The Brit's made some good ones and others/ Taifun Taipan/ Webra/ MVVS. For bigger stunt they are low on the pole. Tucson has many Nats winners etc. None run these stink bombs. Foul up everything they come near. Sound like a beat up old school bus ready for scrap heap.
Now there are some exceptions. FAI Racing diesels/ mega $$ Paw makes a great .55cc diesel/ and also .8cc/1.cc. Also the Mill .75cc is super. Diesel fuel is very expensive and Hooby Shows dodn't even know what it is.
Dan
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Last edited by dankar04; May 08, 2010 at 03:37 PM. Reason: updated
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