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First some history. My rudder was damaged by a tornado. Being my plane is an E-AB which I didn't build I had to get someone to build a new one. As a result the plane sat for 4 months at the mechanic's shop. This past weekend we installed the new rudder and I had a chance to start the plane up. It has a Rotax 912 ULS. My mechanic checked and topped off the battery. It was mid to upper 50's and considering it had been sitting so long it started up pretty easy. Everything looked good. It was too windy for a flight test so I taxied back to my parking spot and just ran the engine for about 10 minutes till all the temps came up to normal. As an FYI with no load on the system I was getting about 15.3 volts when I ran the engine up to 4000 RPM. The next morning I intended to do a test flight. It was mid to low 40's. Normally it's a little hard to start but it just wasn't having it. Basically I killed the battery so I used a booster(something I've done in the past)and jumped it. Started and all seemed good. Run up OK. For testing purposes I just did a flight in the pattern. I taxi back for another go and I see my transponder is off. I boot it back up but it goes out again. Further attempts were unsuccessful. I cycle the avionics switch and try again. No luck with the transponder and now the radio is acting up. I cycle the avionics again and now radio is OK. I'm showing about 8 volts, normally with a load(strobes, taxi lights, standby fuel pump) and engine at idle It's just just below 10. I guess because I'm dumb, I did a couple more trips in the pattern. Rudder working fine. I taxi back to my parking spot. With the engine off both radio and transponder are fine. With everything else turned off I try restarting the engine and all I'm getting is a clicking noise. I'm thinking that the battery didn't charge and the other symptoms are very similar to the time 3 years ago when my voltage regular stopped playing nice. Any suggestions what else I should check? I plan on checking the battery voltage and charge it as needed. Check/clean the connections and see if anything works better.

  • Re: Possible voltage regulator issue?

    by » 3 months ago


    The symptom you describe are likely, at least in part, to be those of a dying battery.

    I learnt, long ago, not to persist with a dying battery - false econamy.  If you persist, you are likely to do untold damage to the starting system and sprag clutch - mega dollars that could have been avoided..

     

     


  • Re: Possible voltage regulator issue?

    by » 3 months ago


    I suppose it could be. The mechanic did check the battery before we tried starting it and other then topping it off said it was good. I checked it today and it was a little over 12 volts. I don't suppose there is any chance there is a problem with the gearbox. When I turn the key it sounds like gears turning but not catching. At least that's what it sounds like. Guess I'll try using a battery booster to see if it makes any difference trying to start it. If it does then maybe I'll just get a new battery and go from there.


  • Re: Possible voltage regulator issue?

    by » 3 months ago


    About your rudder, anybody can legally do anything to an E-AB. Anything except the Annual Condition Inspection. That requires the original builder or an A&P.

    Alan


  • Re: Possible voltage regulator issue?

    by » 3 months ago


    How old is the battery? As suggested it may be just that. Even a young battery can develop a bad cell and have issues. because the Rotax uses a CDI ignition the prop / engine must turn at a minimum rpm and normally above to develop enough energy to fire the plugs. If the battery reads only 12.0v that isn't very high. The other issue is the whirring noise and no engine turning. If you've had prop kickback you may have damaged your sprag clutch and that would need to be replaced.

    p.s.

    When you start the engine you do not need to have all your electronics on drawing power. They can be turned on after start.

     

    12.73+ 100%
    12.62 90%
    12.50 80%
    12.37 70%
    12.24 60%
    12.10 50%
    11.96 40%
    11.81 30%
    11.66 20%
    11.51 10%

    Roger Lee
    LSRM-A & Rotax Instructor & Rotax IRC
    Tucson, AZ Ryan Airfield (KRYN)
    520-349-7056 Cell


  • Re: Possible voltage regulator issue?

    by » 3 months ago


    New battery on order. Hoping that it's not the gearbox.


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