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Prop Strike (Hand messed up!)


haze
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Hi all,

Just another reminder to PREFLIGHT PREFLIGHT PREFLIGHT before you start your engine and to be really safe, only ever start it while it is on your back.

There were some VERY graphic photos posted in the Paramotor group on Facebook of a chap who started his paramotor and wasn't aware the cruise control was set to full power.

He will be lucky if he gets usage of his hand back.

If you wish to see, the album is here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=oa.346969705356054&type=1

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Awful. How did his hand get in the prop, was it reaching for the machine when it kicked off at full revs?

Can't say I like the sound of the cruise control if the throttle had been checked, sounds like it hadn't.

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The first thing I do when I get a new motor for the School is to disable the highly unnecessary cruise control 'feature'

SW :D

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The first thing I do when I get a new motor for the School is to disable the highly unnecessary cruise control 'feature'

Or you could fit a Cameleon throttle ..... which has various safety features, such as automatically disengaging the cruise control when starter button is pressed ! Even with cruise engaged you can fine adjust rpm or operate throttle normaly with one finger.

Cruise control may be unnecessary for students but is highly useful on longer flights - especially on cold days. I wouldn't be without it now.

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The first thing I do when I get a new motor for the School is to disable the highly unnecessary cruise control 'feature'

Or you could fit a Cameleon throttle ..... which has various safety features, such as automatically disengaging the cruise control when starter button is pressed ! Even with cruise engaged you can fine adjust rpm or operate throttle normaly with one finger.

Cruise control may be unnecessary for students but is highly useful on longer flights - especially on cold days. I wouldn't be without it now.

And when you go to grab something and forget you have it on your finger, the motor revs up and you are in the same situation

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A nice safe way for me is a standard throttle with no cruise control :-)

I use a school Macro for the tip to tip and had no cruise control, not sure if any of the other lads actually used it either due to a fairly constant need to change height with airspace.

SW :D

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And when you go to grab something and forget you have it on your finger, the motor revs up and you are in the same situation

I know .... oblivious to the vibration and deafening roar of the motor I'm always absent mindedly trying to make a sandwich or something !! Still, now I'm down to only 3 fingers it is getting easier to focus on the correct warm-up procedure ..... :roll::wink::lol:

I use a school Macro for the tip to tip and had no cruise control, not sure if any of the other lads actually used it either due to a fairly constant need to change height with airspace.

:shock: Blimey ! Were you flying a Eurofighter Typhoon ??? :wink:

I use cruise for any straight line flying of more than a few minutes - even for steady climb or descent for airspace.

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Now, you can't actually blame a cruise control for the lack of proper preflight check. Anything you use while paramotoring can become a danger. Would you blame your gps or fuel mirror if it suddenly become loose and hit your prop because you forgot to check it in preflight?

Cruise control is a good thing, just include it in the preflight list and you will be always allright.

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Indeed it is a feature, not a requirement.

But for low airtime pilots or people who are changing motor after a number of hours with no CC, it's another thing to forget.

SW :D

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Am with you there Simon. Cruise control not neccessary and can be risky if you cant over ride it in less than half a second.

As for the prop strike. We are all too COMPLACENT and complacent people need good strong frames and stiff netting with plenty of clearance from the prop. And even that wouldn't be foolproof !

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:roll: Some strange comments above - maybe just due to some misunderstanding ?

I agree that any device that locks a throttle without being instantly able to release it is a bad thing indeed. The finger throttle does not have this problem.

I also agree that cruise control is simply an additional feature for more experienced pilots and totally unnecessary for students early flights - same as speed bar, tip steering controls or even trimmers ....

There are as many different types of throttle as there are paramotors. Some are very poorly designed, others are better, but having to modify or disable features to make them safe for students does not recommend them to me.... Some designs look like they could easily go to full power if a student stumbles or falls during launch, or catches lines across the trigger.

ANYTHING which improves safety or ease of use should be welcomed - especially in a training environment - in the same way you would choose a machine with strong frame & netting, or look at electric versus pull-start, clutch driven props etc. For instance I've added a kill cord to each of my paramotors (same as on quad bikes, jet skis and powerboats) which is positioned where I hold the motor if I need to start it on the ground. It can be grabbed instantly with either hand, on the ground or in the air, or safely by someone else if anything happened to me. Maybe a kill cord would have prevented this accident ? :?:

Not sure of the relevance Simon but I would happily demonstrate big ears for you with a finger throttle. :) It makes everything easier during launch, in flight, adjusting trimmers, buckles and straps, even using a camera or eating a sandwich.... :lol: A lot of international comp pilots use them, although I'm not sure if Pascal Vallée uses the cruise control much in pylon racing .................... :wink:

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I like the idea of a pull chord.

I have played with remote cut offs as well ( garage door type RC unit ) but this is not yet ready ti fit.

SW :D

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I like the idea of a pull chord.

It is so cheap and simple that it amazes me no paramotor fits them as standard - like in almost every other petrol engine sport. A simple string to pull the HT lead off the spark plug does the same thing on some machines but doesn't work on all. A remote kill sounds good for training but would need thorough testing to rely on it in an emergency.

The human factor means we all make mistakes or get complacent at times. A well placed kill cord might just save a minor incident becoming a major disaster.

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I wonder how much this hand strike and others recently, has anything to do with 'exposed' props on the newer machines? I was brought up on paramotors just after the deregulation in 96 and everyone had 'enclosed' props on the their machines (cage covered the prop completely) in those days (and now for me). I've fallen over a few times on my 'enclosed' version over the years without lines damaged or injury. I bet at least one of my falls would've been a lot more serious with an open prop.

My backup kill switch is the choke.

Richard

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When things start going tits up you can have as many safety devices as you like, but in the heat of the moment nobody will use them. What’s needed is something you don’t have to think about. A simple cheap as chips TILT SWITCH connected to ground out the coil. Can be set at any angle and only cost a couple of quid.

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