Ignition and Electrical Component Safety!

Jun 02, 2011 3 Comments by
When I build an airplane, I always spend extra time to ensure that all internal components are installed properly and well-secured, whether I am building a .25-size glow-powered model, or a 170cc giant-scale aerobat!

This time, we will take a look at my ignition installation on my 2.6m Composite-ARF Edge 540. This is an all-composite aircraft that is powered by a Desert Aircraft 120cc engine. Since this is a composite airframe, it has a few unique areas. For example, the motor dome is a part of the fuselage, which saves weight and ensures proper alignment of the firewall.

After my engine was mounted, it was time to secure the ignition. I opted to secure the ignition inside the fuselage. Resulting, I would have to make a few openings for both the pick-up sensor as well as the ignition shielded plug wire.

Before I got started, I made a trip to my local hardware store and purchased two rubber grommets that were large enough for the shielded plug wire as well as the pick-up sensor lead. Then, I went to a local electrical store and purchased plastic “spiral wrap” insulation to cover the shielded plug wires. Now, it was time to get back to the build!

I used a Dremel and made two openings on the fiberglass skin so that pick-up sensor as well as the ignition shielded plug wire could be inserted through. I then glued in the two rubber grommets in place using Zap Goo. Once cured, I inserted the shielded wire and pick-up sensor through the grommets. Now, no matter how much vibration existed, these electrical components would not become cut!

John Glezellis

About the author

A world-class RC aerobatic pilot, he has flown in and won many national competitions including the XFC and the Don Lowe Masters. His columns “Let’s Talk Giant Scale” in Model Airplane News and “Aerobatics Made Easy” in Electric Flight address in detail all you need to know to improve your piloting and building skills.

3 Responses to “Ignition and Electrical Component Safety!”

  1. Electroair says:

    Very creative and yet elementary. It is often the simplest things like not properly securing components that can lead to disaster.

  2. Douglas Dixon says:

    Anytime you have a line running through a firewall, be it an auto or airframe, it is Mandatory to install grommets! They’re cheap an will avoid a pile of toothpicks.

  3. Anthony says:

    Hi John, I have just written an article about Avionic gremlins, and in it I talk about setting up your wireing systems within your aircraft to prevent crashing at the field.You are right in the fact you need to set things up right.

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