How To Start A Reciprocating Aircraft Engine (VIII)

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Pablo Edronkin

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However, if the engine doesn't want to start, the director may opt to kick the prop again one or more times. If he tells the pilot something like:

- "Keep both on..."


Another view of the moment in which the directo lets the propeller blades go.
Another view of the moment in which the directo lets the propeller blades go.

He will mean that he desires the pilot to leave the magnetos on because he will attempt to kick the propeller again right then. This will be done whenever the director sees that the prop was left after the attempted turn in a good position to grab a blade, and if there is no fuel pouring out of a soaked carburettor. If it is left in an inadequate position the in order to move or reconfigure the propeller the magneto key must be placed in the off position.


The prop blade somewhat above the body, arms flexed to start kicking the engine.
The prop blade somewhat above the body, arms flexed to start kicking the engine.

The director may attempt to kick the prop as many times as he desires before exhaustion; you can theoretically do this all the day long without damaging anything. But if it the engine doesn't start after a few attempts it would be prudent to assume that there is some sort of problem. So, assuming that other prior checks have been performed, like checking if there is fuel, the fuel valves are open and filters have been purged like it is stated in most checklists included in operational manuals, some sort of problem may be present.



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