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Old Mar 18, 2005, 08:09 PM
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Broomfield, CO 80023
Joined Dec 2002
354 Posts
A comment on Norvel glowheads. I remember when I first got mine, I couldn't get it to start at 3 amps on my power panel. I removed the glow head and had to run about 4 amps to get a good red element. After reading all of the above posts, I'm wondering if the hard starting isn't due to the glow heads not being run hot enough

Anybody else run into this issue

John C
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Old Mar 18, 2005, 11:19 PM
VidViper
roger ingersoll's Avatar
western Oregon
Joined Feb 2005
65 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by John_R_C
A comment on Norvel glowheads. I remember when I first got mine, I couldn't get it to start at 3 amps on my power panel. I removed the glow head and had to run about 4 amps to get a good red element. After reading all of the above posts, I'm wondering if the hard starting isn't due to the glow heads not being run hot enough

Anybody else run into this issue

John C
I think you nailed it, John. Though these Norvel's ship tight, I've noticed that ALL my starting headaches seem to have vanished since I up'd the amperage on my electric source.

(As mentioned, four D-cells wired together in YES parallel, instead of the two I was using before).

And, long as we're mentioning power panels, mine finally arrived today, from Tower--but, surprise, when I hooked up my voltmeter to the 1.2 volt out source, it registered over 9 volts.

SO glad I didn't start out hooking up to a glowhead. Tower's replacing it--but still, what a bugger . . .

Anyone else noticed a voltage spike from their glowhead voltage outlet on the power panel?

This happened to one other person in our local club; that's why I decided to check the output voltage BEFORE I hooked it to a glowhead.
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Old Mar 19, 2005, 12:05 AM
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Bipe Flier's Avatar
Mission, BC, Canada
Joined Dec 2003
401 Posts
I've always used a Dubro ignitor with no problems.

Isn't there an adjustment for the glow current on your power panel?
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Old Mar 19, 2005, 06:49 AM
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DICKEYBIRD's Avatar
COLLIERVILLE, TN USA
Joined Jun 2000
617 Posts
Hey Rog, I think you'll find that your power panel was measuring 9v 'cuz it wasn't "loaded" with a plug. Turn the power control knob way down, hook it up to an old plug and ease the power up until you see an orange glow. Then I don't think you'll see 9v on a voltmeter. If it pops the plug element like a flashbulb, send that sucker back!
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Old Mar 19, 2005, 09:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roger ingersoll
... snip...
And, long as we're mentioning power panels, mine finally arrived today, from Tower--but, surprise, when I hooked up my voltmeter to the 1.2 volt out source, it registered over 9 volts.
...snip...
The power panels glow plug driver is circuit that connects the full 12 volt power source to the plug in short bursts. It is referred to as pulse width modulated. When you dial the glow plug power up and down you are varying the pulse width.
The net effect is the same as driving the glow plug with aa 1.2 (or 1.5) volt battery.

The panel is built like that because dropping 12 volts down to 1.2 would require a whooping big resistor, or voltage regulator, that would have to dissipate 20 to 30 watts. It would get quite hot, and probably wouldn't last very long unless it was an expensive part.

A regular multimeter measuring DC voltage won't give a proper measurement because the voltage is not steady.
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Old Mar 19, 2005, 12:53 PM
VidViper
roger ingersoll's Avatar
western Oregon
Joined Feb 2005
65 Posts
aha!

All your responses are quite interesting.

I had read that the output was pulsed, but, with that flight buddy of mine toasting a glowhead at the last fun-fly with his power panel, I decided to monitor mine before I hooked it up to a real load.

Am a bit leery of using glowheads to test my power panel. But I guess I shouldn't just assume it's defective, either. I mean it is brand new.

Would a more sophisticated test device give me a better indication of the output from this new panel?

I've got just your basic (read CHEAP) tester. One of my flight mates is an electrician, with every kind of gauge and meter known to science. Maybe he could hook me up and tell if it's safe?

Thanx so much, y'all, for your thoughtful responses. I got onto this thread to help someone else, but am getting more help from it myself.
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Old Mar 19, 2005, 01:27 PM
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Well... the simplest instrument you have is the meter right on the front of the panel. I'd grab an old plug and just give it a go. Dial it down to the lowest setting to begin with, as was suggested.

If you really want to keep something around to test a panel with, then 0.6 ohm, 5W resistor should draw 2 amps when connected to your panels glow driver.

I've blown glow plugs by connecting them to the 12 volt panel output accidentally. Now that I think about it, that could be avoid by a small fuse wired into the glow plug connector. Assuming the fuse would blow faster than the plug.
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Old Mar 19, 2005, 01:30 PM
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Radio Shack have a 1 ohm 10 watt power resistor for 1.79 for package of two.

http://www.radioshack.com/category.a...4%5F004&Page=1

Your panel should show 1.2 Amps with one of them connected.

You could wire two of those resistors in parallel to get a .5 ohm reistance. Your panel should show 2.4 amps.

http://www.radioshack.com/product.as...5Fid=271%2D131
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Old Mar 19, 2005, 01:42 PM
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BTW - my own BigMig 0.061 came two days ago

I didn't get a wrench so I can't take the head off and add do the pre-break in oil + 100 flips that the instructions included with the engine suggest. I was planning to just heat the cylinder with a hot air gun and get it fired up that way to begin with. The fuel will be Morgan Omega 10%. Should that be okay, or should get a wrench and do oil and flip thing?
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Old Mar 19, 2005, 03:28 PM
VidViper
roger ingersoll's Avatar
western Oregon
Joined Feb 2005
65 Posts
Hey Jim,

I'd follow the instructions to the letter. Even that bit about a few drops of Marvel Mystery (or whatever) oil in the cylinder and a 24-hour rest before you even try to turn it over the first time.

(Didn't get a wrench with mine, either--but surprise: a standard Cox .049 glowhead wrench works just fine. Surely you've one of those lying around? . . .).

Oh, and with fingers crossed, I tried y'all's suggestion of taking an old plug and hooking it up to the pulsed output of that new power panel.

Had an old plug from a McCoy .35, and started at 1 on the rheo-, gradually easing up to 4. Yummy orange glow--and the koolest high-pitched singing sound.

Think I'm gonna take your suggestion, Jim about that resistor from Rickety Shack. (Just HATE blowing glowplugs).

Best,
M
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Old Mar 19, 2005, 03:38 PM
VidViper
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western Oregon
Joined Feb 2005
65 Posts
Btw

'Bout that 10% fuel, Jim.

My first BigMig, I tried to break it in with 10% SIG. Not much luck there. Then my LHS suggested I up the nitro, as these engines seem to like it. I went up to 25% SIG, and the rest is history.

Since, doing more reading, I kinda run a custom blend of 30% Blue Thunder with about a quarter to a third (by volume) of 10% SIG--with a bit of true castor oil added--one ounce of castor per pint of fuel, by volume.

It's interesting (not to contradict the advice I just gave you) but I ALSO read that NITRO's illegal in Russia, so these Norvels will apparently run just fine with no nitro at all.
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Old Mar 20, 2005, 03:37 PM
VidViper
roger ingersoll's Avatar
western Oregon
Joined Feb 2005
65 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by JimTrainor
Radio Shack have a 1 ohm 10 watt power resistor for 1.79 for package of two.

http://www.radioshack.com/category.a...4%5F004&Page=1

Your panel should show 1.2 Amps with one of them connected.
Took your advice, Jim, and got a packet of these resistors today.

When I hooked one of them up, the meter on the panel shows a fraction of an amp. When I dial it up to just under the 4 amp mark, on the nob, I do show a 1.2 amp reading on the meter.

I'll keep this resistor in the flight box, and do a quicky test before a flight session. Half of a buck-seventy-nine is better than a blown glowplug.

Thanx, Jim, for the tip.
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Old Mar 22, 2005, 06:04 PM
Pickin' an a Flyin'
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United States, TN, Knoxville
Joined Apr 2004
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Got my panel, batter, starter, glow starter, and such today. Two words: Holy crap! It was so easy to get the motor to run (with the muffler on, I might add!). It's two completely different worlds.

Looks as though all that whackin with the chicken stick made the propeller uneven as the vibration was awful, I'll change to another (balanced) prop before running it again. One of the nuts holding on the motor mount popped off and the mufflers rotating end popped right out of the rest of it. I probably need to perm fix it.

So, if you're outside working up quite a sweat with your itty bitty motor, take it from me. Get the right gear to make the job easy. <3

I used cheapo sealed tower battery, deluxe power panel II something or another, sullivan 1/2a starter, dubro panel glow starter. I don't have a carry case, so I mounted the panel to the box everything shipped in =/
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Old Mar 22, 2005, 06:12 PM
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Bipe Flier's Avatar
Mission, BC, Canada
Joined Dec 2003
401 Posts
I'm glad to hear you got it working.

I only use my power panel on COX glow heads. The Dubro ignitor and a Miller 1/2A starter work great on my Norvels.
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Old Mar 22, 2005, 10:10 PM
Pickin' an a Flyin'
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United States, TN, Knoxville
Joined Apr 2004
1,917 Posts
I've been able to start the motor, sans muffler, with the Dubro ignitor and a screwdriver. I've no doubt that it was the starter that made all the difference. It really flicks that prop. It's like being in heaven. I can't wait till I can finish my FF foam glider conversion. With a way to reliably start the power plant, my hope is renewed.
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