Carbon Tail Rotor

Full view of installed PRO-DRIVE, INC. Tail Rotor System
The new Tail Rotor system as shown installed above consists of two major components :

1. Rotor blades made of rectangular aluminum spars that extend the full span of the blade which is honeycombed into an airfoil shape and covered with carbon fiber exterior skins.
2. A new slider hub assembly that uses a delta hinge configuration made of aluminum plates. The slider is made of Nylatron material that is self lubricating.

Some of the major benefits of this system are:

  • Reduced Maintenance - Reoccurring lubrication of the slider is not required which also reduces dust and other abrasives from adhering to the shaft and slider. The expanded slider hub will also reduce wear. The carbon fiber strength of the redesigned rotor blades provides extended life. This is because carbon fiber characteristics provide exceptional strength per weight and is extremely fatigue resistant over the standard RotorWay aluminum skin covering over a steel pipe spar blade design.


  • Improved operational efficiency - Eight bearings are eliminated and the slider is now the self-lubricating Nylatron rather than the old greased slider that RotorWay supplies. The pilot will notice up to 2" less manifold pressure during hover. This is due to the delta hinge help on transitional tendencies. This lower manifold pressure translates into greater power available to your main rotor blades.


  • The 2 1/2 degree pre-cone vastly improves the right pedal authority which the pilot will notice immediately! This provides a major improvement in pilot's confidence in his authority over the aircraft. The pilot will feel more comfortable and experience greatly improved control when he discovers the smooth and even response to his pedal pressure

The following photo is of a RotorWay standard aluminum skined tail rotor blade that exhibits fatigue cracks after only 80 hours of use. The drilled holes were made in an attempt to stop the progression and expansion of the cracks. This type of fatigue cracking ought to make any builder/pilot wary of flying with aluminum skin blades. Pre and post flight inspection of these tail rotor blades is a must for your own safety!


Fatigue cracks in a aluminum skin tail rotor blade
These fatigue cracks are "hairline" which requires close inspection of the blade. The blade shown here is not airworthy.

The next photo below shows the unitized alumnium spar molded design of the PRO-DRIVE, INC tail rotor blade with the marriage of the newest and strongest material, carbon fiber. This design takes the insecurity out of your flying experience. It is one less thing worry about. A pair of these blades actually dug into the ground an inch and a half in hard clay and were able to fly to a safe location for repair. The life expectancy of these blades is anticipated to be about 2000 hours, or, the life of the aircraft.


PRO-DRIVE new molded alumnium construction with honeycomb airfoil shape and covered with carbon fiber

The next picture is a closeup of the Nylatron slider and hinge assembly. This hinge design is similar to the design used on certified helicopters such as the Bell Jet Ranger and the Robison R22.



Tail rotor Nylatron  slider assembly




John Spurling, Pres.
Route 3, Box 12 C
Cleveland, OK 74020, USA
Tel. (918) 243-7635
Fax: (918) 243-7882