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Thread: Free Castering Tailwheel

  1. #1
    Crash's Avatar
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    Free Castering Tailwheel

    I am thinking about pulling all the guts out of my Scott 3200 (w/Baby Bushwheel) tailwheel along with the rudder horn, springs, connector links and just letting it free caster. Has anyone done this and how is it working? Crash

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    I just repaired my tailwheel that would not lock up after castoring left. I think that I like it being able to steer. Steering with brakes requires more effort and power. Using power in the sand and qravel leads to prop wear and possible damage from qravel. Perhaps the large bushwheels and 3" gear eliminates this potiental damage. Crash, after a season how do you like the radial vs bias ply tires? What air pressure do you run? Do the bias tires offer any advantage over the radials?pak

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    Re: Free Castering Tailwheel

    Quote Originally Posted by Crash
    I am thinking about pulling all the guts out of my Scott 3200 (w/Baby Bushwheel) tailwheel along with the rudder horn, springs, connector links and just letting it free caster. Has anyone done this and how is it working? Crash
    I'm not trying to be sarcastic here but why? other than weight or maintenance issues what advantages would that have?

    David.

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    Re: Free Castering Tailwheel

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  5. #5
    Crash's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pak
    I just repaired my tailwheel that would not lock up after castoring left. I think that I like it being able to steer. Steering with brakes requires more effort and power. Using power in the sand and qravel leads to prop wear and possible damage from qravel. Perhaps the large bushwheels and 3" gear eliminates this potiental damage. Crash, after a season how do you like the radial vs bias ply tires? What air pressure do you run? Do the bias tires offer any advantage over the radials?pak
    The 31" Bushwheels have sat in the shed all season while the 14 is on floats. I could throw them on the PA-18 but I like the 30" Air Streaks on it a lot better. Crash

  6. #6
    Crash's Avatar
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    Re: Free Castering Tailwheel

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptFox
    Quote Originally Posted by Crash
    I am thinking about pulling all the guts out of my Scott 3200 (w/Baby Bushwheel) tailwheel along with the rudder horn, springs, connector links and just letting it free caster. Has anyone done this and how is it working? Crash
    I'm not trying to be sarcastic here but why? other than weight or maintenance issues what advantages would that have?

    David.
    I just think it would be easier to manuver on the ground and I use the brakes to steer anyway. This new Scott 3200 with the wide fork and bushwheel acts odd some times. Locks to the side, does a tank slapper on pavement some times, it just acts weird. Crash

  7. #7
    T.J.'s Avatar
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    Crash:
    I'm going to do the same thing on my Xp. With good brakes you don't need a steerable tailwheel. A full swivel wheel should work fine.

  8. #8
    Lance's Avatar
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    I just went thru the internals of my scott yesterday to clean and re-grease. It has free castered, for the most part, for years with no problems.

    Lance

  9. #9

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    free castor certainly helps in big crosswinds as you dont have to take out the correction with the rudder when you hit ground. lot less likely to ground loop in crosswinds. but it is nice to be able to steer with out brakes especially if you are wearing winter boots.

  10. #10
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    I don't think I'd want to make a habit of landing with the the T/W all over the place. Free-castering sounds like a good idea if combined with a means to *lock* the tailwheel for T/O and landing (Maybe a glider-tow mod could be adapted). Of course, the trick is to remember to lock/unlock it.

  11. #11

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    I did this about 3-4 years ago and have had no adverse side effects. The plane is much more comfortable to fly in the air since there is not any drag on the rudder and the rudder takes a lot less abuse. I think it is the cat's meow, but bear in mind I am a little odd.

  12. #12
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    Took awhile to get used to it...but I love the free swivel tail wheel on the UTVA's & using the brakes to steer...but of course they do lock for take off and landing...thus allowing you to horse rudder against P factor and let you drag a brake to keep straight without any chance of over steer. The locking feature also makes it very nice for back tracking a long paved runway. Once going straight throw the lock lever and you can quit dragging a brake to stay straight. Once you're back to the "button"..unlock..spin around..roll straight..relock and take off! Without locking the tailwheel for these back track excursions the feet do a lot of dancing and the brakes get abused. Without the lock feature you will be changing brake pads much more often..but probably not a big issue if flying from grass most of the time.

    Cheers,
    Wayne

  13. #13

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    It's not like you'de have to split the cases if you didn't like it.

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