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Old 03-23-2013, 10:07 AM's Avatar is offline
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: WA
Posts: 995
Default Sky-Tec NL starter casting failure and improvements...

I installed my first NL starter many years ago in my Cessna, and when we built our RV7 I chose the same starter. I have had great performance from it until last week, after getting some fuel at the pumps my starter failed me...

I had a short reversal burst from the prop... and with only a whir coming from the starter I suspected that the kickback protection system (KPS) pin must have broken.

After towing the plane back to the hangar and removing the cowling, parts began falling out

Unfortunately the starter ripped itself up rather than braking the pin! The casting just ripped apart and fractured at the tap holes.

I contacted Sky-Tec and shared some photos and they promptly shipped a replacement rebuild.

It appears that the casting has changed a bit from my original REV D to the newest REV F.

I sure like the starter and give a big thumbs up to the company!

Here is a shot of the original starter and the failed casting where the gear is internally supported.

and here is a shot of the new REV F replacement where you can see some subtle changes.

RV7 powered by a lycoming thunderbolt IO-390
turning a whirlwind HRT prop

with more hours flying than building... 2,535 on the hobbs!
ORCA Flight
Race 771
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Old 03-23-2013, 11:01 AM
Jerry Carter's Avatar
Jerry Carter Jerry Carter is offline
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Montrose, CO
Posts: 127
Default Sky-Tec

I had a similar failure and similar experience with the company. I shipped mine back to them and they repaired it, charging me something like $35 as I recall. Great service and quick turnaround. I understand the casing has been improved to help prevent failures such as mine, which was caused by a kickback during start.
Jerry Carter
RV-8A sold
RV-7 sold
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Old 03-23-2013, 11:06 AM
rockwoodrv9 rockwoodrv9 is offline
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Meridian ID, Aspen CO, Okemos MI
Posts: 2,861

Im just getting ready to order my starter. I have looked at the NL and also the HT. I am leaning to the HT. I know I don't want the lightweight model, but it is sure hard to figure out the best way to go for a starter!

Glad to hear that the company backs their product.
Williamston MI
O-320 D2A
Flying N376E
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Old 03-27-2013, 04:11 PM
PerfTech's Avatar
PerfTech PerfTech is offline
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Redlands, Ca.
Posts: 1,525
Talking STARTER A-O.K.!!!!!!!!!!!!

....I have had several of the light weight starters from Sky-Tec and just had occasion to replace one again. This time I got the HT model instead of the light weight one and I must say the difference is absolutely incredible! It turns over the engine with my light weight prop at least twice as fast and it starts like a dream. I only wish I had known this a long time ago as I could have saved myself a lot of grief. This is the second starter ring gear and third starter on this airplane. After seeing how the new one performs I am convinced this will most likely be the last I will need. I didn't have room for the NL model, but was told by Sky-Tec it performs even better with more cranking power than the HT model. I couldn't be more pleased with this product or this companies customer service. Best, Allan...
Allan Nimmo
Innovative Aircraft Safety
Products, Tools & Services
Southern California (KREI)
RV-9A / Edge-540
(909) 824-1020
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:23 AM
DanH's Avatar
DanH DanH is offline
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: 08A
Posts: 10,352

The NL design started with a smaller shear pin diameter. Upsizing the shear pin may have helped find the limits of the gearcase
Dan Horton
Barrett IO-390
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