The newest video in Hartzell Propeller’s series of how-to videos for pilots and mechanics covers the evaluation of structural composite propeller blades, with Hartzell expert Kevin Ryan describing the ins and outs of composite prop pre-flight checks for pilots.
“Pre-flight checks for structural composite propellers are very similar to metal props with some subtle differences,” said Hartzell Propeller Executive Vice President JJ Frigge. “Hartzell’s composite expert Kevin Ryan walks pilots through the pre-flight step by step, including a discussion of nicks, gouges and paint erosion caused by runway debris.”In the video, Ryan also addresses trailing edge impact damage from tow bars or other ground handling equipment.
He describes airworthy damage limits and how to properly “coin tap” the blade to detect evidence of possible delamination.
Hartzell uses aerospace grade composite construction materials that are durable, but they are not entirely immune to damage, officials note.
Unlike aluminum or wooden blades, Hartzell’s composite propeller blades can be restored to their original dimensions over and over again, officials note.