Gas Engine Setup
Model Airplane News|April 2020
Gas Engine Setup
Installation tips to keep your powerplant happy

When it comes to that first test flight of your newly finished giant-scale warbird (or any gas engine-powered model), you can increase your chances for an incident-free experience by correctly installing and setting up your powerplant. As with most things related to RC warbirds, neatness counts. Here are a few tips for making your firewall forward work like a pro’s.


It goes without saying that you do not want to take any shortcuts while building your warbird. So start off by using the correct hardware for the job. If you have an ARF, check the quality of the attachment bolts and nuts as well as the engine standoffs, if required. If the hardware isn’t up to your standards, get some replacements from RTL Fasteners. I often replace metric hardware with standard SAE versions. Inside the fuselage behind the firewall, if I have relatively easy access, I use plastic insert locknuts with large fender washers in place of blind nuts. Using a hex driver outside and a box-end wrench inside, I snug the engine attachment nuts and bolts, check the engine alignment and offset, and then tighten them up. If you prefer the blind nuts, be sure to use a little thread locker so the hardware doesn’t come loose. There is a good bit of vibration in this environment, so do periodic checks as well.


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April 2020