“This is our first OEM (original equipment manufacturer) application for the new-generation X-Drive lightweight starter,” said Hartzell Engine Technologies’ President Mike Disbrow Disbrow. “CubCrafters manufactures an exceptional line of certificated, LSA and kit aircraft. Their selection of the X-Dive starter for their upgraded Carbon Cub SS LSA is an outstanding endorsement.”
Disbrow stressed that weight savings is especially important in LSA category aircraft like the Carbon Cub SS.
“Every pound matters and the fact that the X-Drive is 1.7 pounds lighter than the previous starter is a significant contributor to helping CubCrafters meet the performance goals for the Carbon Cub SS,” he said.
As testament to the value of saving weight, according to CubCrafters the 180-horsepower Carbon Cub SS has a power-to-weight ratio of just one (1) horsepower to each 7.33 pounds of aircraft weight, (compared, for example, to a Cessna 172R’s one to 15.33 ratio).
Randy Lervold, CubCrafters’ general manager, said that while the X-Drive’s lighter-weight and strong starting performance were the primary reasons why the company selected it as the standard equipment starter, another advantage is the X-Drive’s consistently low power draw requirements.
“In the interest of overall weight reduction, we used the smallest possible battery for the Carbon Cub SS LSA and the X-Drive’s low power draw enables it to provide consistent starts even with the lightweight battery,” he stated. “Since we introduced the X-Drive, we’ve received consistently good feedback from our owners on starting ease and reliability.”
Hartzell Engine Technologies’ V.P. Engineering Rick Quave explained that while the X-Drive is the company’s lightest starter, it offers many of the same engineering and performance advancements found in other Hartzell starters.
“For example, the X-Drive has the same high-performance permanent magnet motor used in our popular E-Drive starter,” he said. “This motor provides an industry-leading duty cycle or ratio of engagement to rest time, making it more damage tolerant. The X-Drive also features our new solenoid engagement technology. This is much less temperamental and more reliable than the mechanical Bendix drives found on prior-generation starters.”
Other advancements found in the Hartzell Engine Technologies X-Drive starter include:
- Fully supported pinion gear encased in strong nose case
- High-performance armature
- Redesigned brush holder and offset brush position for increased contact area
- Rare earth neodymium magnets
- Improved temperature stability
“With its overall lighter weight and exceptional performance, the X-Drive has proven to be ideally suited for not only light sport and kit aircraft, but certificated aircraft as well,” Disbrow said. “Just because a unit is designated as light-weight, doesn’t mean it lacks in performance and reliability.”