Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login
Posted: 12/30/2005 1:06:01 PM EDT
I'm building an airplane of my own design out of bamboo poles, duct tape and house-wrap. I need some idea of how many leaf blowers it will take to get into the air.

I've been looking at several brands but they all have a velocity of 150 to 200 mph and I don't think my plane can go that fast safely.

Mild Bill
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 1:09:53 PM EDT
They also only get up to 150 mph over a very tiny area, they don't produce a lot of thrust. Leaf blowers are too heavy for the power they give you, if you want anything to fly, it's not gonna be powered by leaf blowers.
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 1:11:26 PM EDT
Well, at least you'll only have accumulated 600 posts before you die, so we won't miss you too much.

Before you test it, tell us which paper's running your obit.
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 1:14:31 PM EDT
Use a conveyor belt running the opposite direction.

Link Posted: 12/30/2005 1:17:22 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/30/2005 1:18:01 PM EDT by Zatu]

Originally Posted By MagKnightX:
Before you test it, tell us which paper's running your obit.



That reminds me, [to mildbill] tell me your name and address and stuff, I want to be the first to sumbit you to the Darwin awards.
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 1:18:18 PM EDT
Send all firearms to me first please, for safe keeping you understand, I will IM the address.
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 1:27:40 PM EDT
I'm all for innovation and new aircraft designs, but if you don't even understand how thrust works you shouldn't be designing them...
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 2:32:24 PM EDT
I would use pulse jet(s), and use the leaf blower to start them.

Bamboo plane? Trying to get off the island Little Buddy?
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 2:36:17 PM EDT
I know, everbody thinks it won't fly but I've been hanging out at the airport watching the airplanes take-off and land and it doesn't look too hard.

I know that leaf blowers aren't very powerful so that's why I'm planning on using more than one; however many it takes.

I'm glad I did some research and evesdroped on Bud the instructor getting ready to go up with a guy in a twin motor Piper. Apparently when you have more than one motor(leaf-blower) and one motor takes a dump while you're getting up in the air; real bad stuff can happen. So's you don't turn into a pin-wheel, the best thing is to just shut the other leaf-blowers off and not try to go up right then, but go back and get another run at it.

Also if I go far up I'll need some extra oxygen so I'm borrowing my nephew's
scuba outfit and he got it filled when he was in Marathon last summer.

I'm glad I've taken my time and done this thing right and as soon as I get the right motors you'll be seeing me on the news.

Regards,
Mild Bill
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 2:38:39 PM EDT
make sure you fill the fuselage with helium for added lift
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 2:43:13 PM EDT
If you put enough leafblowers on it you're going to anchor the thing to the ground. The thrust per pound isn't that good.

And I'd think if you really knew that much about planes, you would have figured out that your plan isn't going to work. Listening to a guy take off in a twin-engine plane and deciding to build one is like watching an action movie and deciding to build a gun based on what you learned from the movie.
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 2:45:03 PM EDT
This is kinda enjoyable...


Aviator
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 2:46:06 PM EDT



Zooooommmmm
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 2:46:17 PM EDT
how old are you?
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 2:50:28 PM EDT
I assume that you are using gas powered leaf blowers. There is your problem!

Use electric blowers. They are much lighter, thereby addressing the power to weight ratio. I know, I know, you would need a really long extension cord.

You could mount a generator midship and run extension cords to each electric leaf blower. Problem solved!

Together we would be a heck of a team! The Wright brothers got nothing on us!
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 2:50:49 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mildbill39:
I know, everbody thinks it won't fly but I've been hanging out at the airport watching the airplanes take-off and land and it doesn't look too hard. Keen powers of analysis: Check!

I know that leaf blowers aren't very powerful so that's why I'm planning on using more than one; however many it takes. Complete mastery of the concepts of Physics: Check!

I'm glad I did some research and evesdroped on Bud the instructor getting ready to go up with a guy in a twin motor Piper. Conducted thorough research: Check! Apparently when you have more than one motor(leaf-blower) and one motor takes a dump while you're getting up in the air; real bad stuff can happen. Sound grasp of aeronautical engineering terminology: Check! So's you don't turn into a pin-wheel, Aware that pilots shouldn't "turn into" things: Check! the best thing is to just shut the other leaf-blowers off and not try to go up right then, but go back and get another run at it. Back up plan: Check!

Also if I go far up I'll need some extra oxygen so I'm borrowing my nephew's
scuba outfit and he got it filled when he was in Marathon last summer. Well acquainted with gear utilized by high altitude test pilots in unpressurized cabin : Check!

I'm glad I've taken my time and done this thing right and as soon as I get the right motors you'll be seeing me on the news. Old fashioned 'Murican confidence and ambition: Check!

Regards,
Mild Bill



$20 says he makes it!
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 3:38:56 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DzlBenz:
Use a conveyor belt running the opposite direction.


Link Posted: 12/30/2005 5:02:59 PM EDT
Be sure to get somebody to hold you beer and don't forget to video it!
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 5:05:37 PM EDT
The poeple that don't get this is a joke need help.

Funny thread though.
Link Posted: 12/30/2005 5:08:31 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Echo_Hotel:

Originally Posted By mildbill39:
I know, everbody thinks it won't fly but I've been hanging out at the airport watching the airplanes take-off and land and it doesn't look too hard. Keen powers of analysis: Check!

I know that leaf blowers aren't very powerful so that's why I'm planning on using more than one; however many it takes. Complete mastery of the concepts of Physics: Check!

I'm glad I did some research and evesdroped on Bud the instructor getting ready to go up with a guy in a twin motor Piper. Conducted thorough research: Check! Apparently when you have more than one motor(leaf-blower) and one motor takes a dump while you're getting up in the air; real bad stuff can happen. Sound grasp of aeronautical engineering terminology: Check! So's you don't turn into a pin-wheel, Aware that pilots shouldn't "turn into" things: Check! the best thing is to just shut the other leaf-blowers off and not try to go up right then, but go back and get another run at it. Back up plan: Check!

Also if I go far up I'll need some extra oxygen so I'm borrowing my nephew's
scuba outfit and he got it filled when he was in Marathon last summer. Well acquainted with gear utilized by high altitude test pilots in unpressurized cabin : Check!

I'm glad I've taken my time and done this thing right and as soon as I get the right motors you'll be seeing me on the news. Old fashioned 'Murican confidence and ambition: Check!

Regards,
Mild Bill



$20 says he makes it!



"Hold my beer and watch this!"
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 5:33:15 AM EDT
Beginning assembly this morning. May not have buy thrust units. Since this is Saturday morning leaf blowers will be easy to locate in the neighborhood but I don't think I'll say why I am borrowing
them.

The mighty TYVEK Tiger should be ready to break the surly bonds of earth this week-end. Wish me luck.

Mild Bill
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 5:37:46 AM EDT
Godspeed,my friend,as you shed the surly bonds of earth.....
Don't ask about my Estes rocket powered suit I developed back in the 70s.
It really burns my ass when people bring up that "unfortunate incident".
Dream BIG!
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 5:40:22 AM EDT
I think you need to go to the airport and get some aviation fuel and mix in about 30% nitromethane. That should give you just enough power to take off as long as you lay off the donuts a few days. BTW you may want to make some light weight blast shielding around the blowers.
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 5:42:19 AM EDT
Unitized cockpit & ejection apparatus

Link Posted: 12/31/2005 5:54:03 AM EDT
Maybe you need to rethink the leaf blower approach.

I can see something like a couple of gas powered lawn mowers on their SIDES with maybe some long extensions welded to mower blades for the extra thrust you'll want for aerobatic stunts.

That should take care of your thrust issues.

efxguy
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 6:18:38 AM EDT
Are you using leaf blowers only or are you using the weed eaters with the one click system and the leaf blower attachment for propulsion?

The way I see it is that you could use a couple of leaf blowers for downward thrust (like a Harrier), that should help lessen your take-off run length.

Another thing to think about is the length of the leaf blower hose.
While using a longer leaf blower hose will make up for design problems (being able to duct around structural items) you will lose a fair amount of velocity from the leaf blower thrust.

You might also want to think about a single stage afterburner, something with a 5-10 second burn time.

Sounds like you have done your engineering right!
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 8:11:34 AM EDT
Still alive?
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 9:52:16 AM EDT
"I know, everbody thinks it won't fly but I've been hanging out at the airport watching the airplanes take-off and land and it doesn't look too hard.

I know that leaf blowers aren't very powerful so that's why I'm planning on using more than one; however many it takes."

You have to be putting us on. Or you are like the guy that tied the weather balloons toa lawn chair and went up so far plane pilots saw him.
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 10:39:39 AM EDT

Originally Posted By mildbill39:
you'll be seeing me on the news.

Regards,
Mild Bill


At last a true statement.
How did it turn out there MB? I am rootin' for ya, really I am.
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 10:40:59 AM EDT
They tried to make a hoovercraft on Mythbusters a year or so ago using leaf blowers, was a total flop

Think it was episode 17 dsc.discovery.com/fansites/mythbusters/episode/episode_06.html

Link Posted: 12/31/2005 10:50:11 AM EDT
Leaf blowers are far too heavy. There is a way to get your plane in the air, but it's very unorthodox and unexpected for something like this...

Use R/C airplane engines!

Much better thrust/weight ratio, and not that much more expensive than leaf blowers if you spec everything out right.
Link Posted: 12/31/2005 3:00:58 PM EDT
Tomorrow is the big day. I borrowed 4 power units beside my own but could not figure how to mount the last one. I may just attach it to the furniture dolly which will be left on the ground to reduce drag and weight.

I wanted to launch it out at the airport but the manager guy wasn't very polite when I tried to get the use of a runway.
So I talked to the neighbors and they agreed to help block off our street which is about a half mile between intersections.

The neighbors were a lot more enthusiastic than I figured except for the one who wanted his leaf-blower back.
Didn't need that one anyways.

The only thing now is the weather. Will check again later tonight.

Regards and Happy New Year
Mild Bill
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 1:44:27 PM EDT
Just got back from the ER. I've decided my aviation career is over. Just a little road-rash and a couple of bamboo splinters and the only treatment was some antibiotic and a tetanus shot.

Lost one leaf blower and a mailbox. The TYVEK Tiger was a total loss due to the tow driver not having an observer. Yes the ship was a bit under-powered like some said here so I thought pick-up assisted launch was appropriate. Hell, the Navy does it.

Please don't say "I told you so." because I've learned my lesson and will be more careful.

Thanks for all your advice and a Happy New Year

Mild Bill

p.s. While I was in the MRI machine(looking for internal injuries) down at the hospital, I was just lying there looking around and imagined how you could make a submarine out of any big tube shaped thing and realized that I had three 55 gal drums behind the garage and a trolling motor I use on my canoe. I can hardly wait to draw this thing up and get to work on it. Wow, what an idea.
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 2:07:56 PM EDT
Actually the submarine idea would be a bit easier than the Tyvek Tiger. Of course that is only if you don't try to pressurize it. Borrow some scuba equipment and a spare air tank or two, some air bags (those that are used to recover overturned trucks), a manifold to allow for increasing/decreasing air in those bags, and viola!, you have a sub.

One thing I can guarantee you is no road rash in the submarine endeavor. Have fun!!


Link Posted: 1/1/2006 2:17:45 PM EDT
Bill,
Don't give up! Your basic design has great merit.Your execution just needs a little work.
You don't want to wind up like Lemuel Wright,do you?


(Orville and Wilbur's brother.HE GAVE UP!)
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 3:37:31 PM EDT
Bill, the submarine sounds like a good idea also. Just remember to leave a hole big enough to escape through if anything should go wrong. Wear your seatbelt at all times. It will take considerable weight to get the tube to submerge with all the airbag flotation. May I suggest combine weights and cinder blocks for ballast? 3 50 gallon drums will require #457 pounds of ballast to stabilize.
Sorry the Tyvek Tiger didn't work out. Remember---try, try, try again. The third time is the charm.
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 3:50:13 PM EDT
You need one of these:

www.asciimation.co.nz/turbine/
Top Top