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  #1  
Old 07-26-2011, 03:56 AM
Kahuna's Avatar
Kahuna Kahuna is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Gold Hill, NC25
Posts: 2,421
Default Emergency Smoke System Shut Off. Ideas considered.

The RV community has many smoke systems installed. Below is an exceprt from Air Shows Magazine. Having made a dead stick landing in my RV during an air show with a smoke system I could not shut off, this work is looking me square in the eye. Feel free to banter your ideas here. We are looking for the best solution. The ACE heading this effort is Georgias own Buck Roetman.
======

Recent accidents, like the March crash that inflicted serious burn
injuries on Amanda Franklin, have strengthened resolve among
ICAS members to create an easily-retrofitted automatic smoke oil
pump shut-off for piston-powered airplanes.
“The oil is a lightweight, paraffin-based mineral oil that is vaporized
in an environment with little oxygen,” said aerobatic performer
Buck Roetman. He says smoke oil is most dangerous when
an engine fails. The already hot exhaust continues to vaporize
smoke oil during a crash.
“It’s an environment that is very conducive to flash fires,” said
Roetman. “The electric pump continues to pump, and it just feeds
the fire.”
Roetman is spearheading an ICAS effort to design an automatic
shut-off switch for smoke pumps. When the oil pressure in an airplane’s
engine drops, like during an engine failure, an automatic
switch will sense the reduced oil pressure and shut off a relay that
runs to the smoke pump.
“It should be easy to install,” said Roetman, adding that the retrofit
will work on any airplane with an electric smoke pump. “I don’t
see it being more than a couple hours [of work] and it will cost
about $50.”
Roetman knows the real dangers of smoke oil. His engine failed
with the smoke on during a flat spin. He hit the starter after the
smoke pump ran for just a few seconds. “The resulting flash fire
shrunk the tapes on the bottom of the airplane and I could feel
heat on the back of my legs through a nomex suit,” said Roetman.
“If we don’t do this cheaply and simply, it won’t get done,” said
Roetman. “This is about saving our friends.”
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Gold Hill, NC25

Last edited by Kahuna : 07-26-2011 at 04:15 AM.
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  #2  
Old 07-26-2011, 04:20 AM
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Kahuna Kahuna is offline
 
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Location: Gold Hill, NC25
Posts: 2,421
Default I have no oil switch

One of the challenges I face with a modern engine management system is that I do not have an oil pressure switch, only an oil pressure sensor. I let my engine monitor handle alerting me if my oil pressure gets too low.

Adding an oil pressure switch is no problem and cheap, but it has to be weighed against the risk of adding another line and device that has a potential for failure that could result in the loss of oil pressure. Ive noodled on how to resolve this problem in other ways and I have not come up with a simple, effective, near zero additional risk way to solve the problem.
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  #3  
Old 07-26-2011, 05:07 AM
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RV6_flyer RV6_flyer is offline
 
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Location: NC25
Posts: 3,944
Default

At the present time, the issue is being worked by at least one company.

http://www.smokingairplanes.com/docu...UOUSSWITCH.doc

The "G" switch from an ELT comes to mind. Your oil pressure switch through a relay would work but there is always the possibility of the contacts wielding together from the motor current surge. Will have that issue with anything that stops the motor current flow.
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To most people, the sky is the limit.
To those who love aviation, the sky is home.

Last edited by RV6_flyer : 07-26-2011 at 05:07 AM. Reason: Spelling
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  #4  
Old 07-26-2011, 05:08 AM
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Alan Carroll Alan Carroll is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Posts: 778
Default Oil pressure switch

I don't have a smoke system, but I do have an oil pressure switch. Its mounted in to one position of a Van's 3-position VA-168 sender mount. The oil pressure sender is adjacent on the same mount. There is one oil line from the engine, and a short (a few inches) U-tube from the pressure send to the pressure switch.

Nothing is ever failure-proof, but this is about as simple and durable as you can get a I think.
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Old 07-26-2011, 06:35 AM
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pierre smith pierre smith is offline
 
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Location: Louisville, Ga
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Default Master switch?

Mike, is the oil shut off when the master switch for the airplane is off? If so, make that part of your forced landing procedure. After all, you don't have an automatic off for the fuel!

Since I had that burned fuel line on the hot exhaust in my -10, I have begun drilling my head with "Fuel off..fuel off" ever since and everything electrical as well.

Best,
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Old 07-26-2011, 07:06 AM
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Kahuna Kahuna is offline
 
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Default

Pierre, Yes you are correct. This would be true in a normal emergency situation if there is such a thing.

Unfortunately in many air show environments, and in many other situations, there is not time for this with hands full, particularly with flight control problems, low altitudes, spectators, other planes near you, and other priorities keeping the pilot busy. This is the reason for the safety feature needs on a forced landing where the pilot has his hands full. My incident, Kyle Franklins, The recent Mustang mid air(was not running smoke but could have been), and other examples, drives the need for this.
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Old 07-26-2011, 08:28 AM
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panhandler1956 panhandler1956 is offline
 
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Location: Ohio
Posts: 1,686
Default My 2 cnets

This might be overly simple, but what about having the smoke pump on a momentary switch that you have to hold down. If something happens, it should be reflex to turn loose of the button?
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EAA Chapter 9 Tech Counselor/Flight Advisor
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RV-8 'Contrary Mary' flying
N784DE S/N #82614

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Old 07-26-2011, 08:41 AM
benbell4140 benbell4140 is offline
 
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Location: broussard louisiana
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Default

I plan on setting it up as Brent suggested. A momentary button on the throttle lever.
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  #9  
Old 07-26-2011, 08:56 AM
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Kahuna Kahuna is offline
 
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by panhandler1956 View Post
This might be overly simple, but what about having the smoke pump on a momentary switch that you have to hold down. If something happens, it should be reflex to turn loose of the button?
Yes this is one option for the pilot just flying by with smoke. It is not a feasible option for anyone that needs to fly their plane precisely while moving the stick and throttle and leaving their smoke on while doing it. If you have seen the large osh formations, or Team RV, or other performers, or other examples, there is just no way to finesse your plane the way it needs to be finessed while holding a button.
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Old 07-26-2011, 09:08 AM
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panhandler1956 panhandler1956 is offline
 
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kahuna View Post
Yes this is one option for the pilot just flying by with smoke. It is not a feasible option for anyone that needs to fly their plane precisely while moving the stick and throttle and leaving their smoke on while doing it. If you have seen the large osh formations, or Team RV, or other performers, or other examples, there is just no way to finesse your plane the way it needs to be finessed while holding a button.
That makes sense.
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EAA Chapter 9 Tech Counselor/Flight Advisor
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RV-8 'Contrary Mary' flying
N784DE S/N #82614

www.fixedwingbuddha.com
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