How to Correct an Aircraft Prop Spinner Wobble

Fly vibration-free by correcting aircraft propeller spinner wobble. An aircraft spinner is the cone at the front of the propeller that helps secure it into place. According to the FAA, the propeller is one of the most highly-stressed components on an aircraft. It receives up to 25 tons of centrifugal force during normal operation. Well maintained propellers can perform under this kind of stress as long as components like the spinner itself are well maintained and not damaged. Assess spinner wobble when the engine is running with a thorough inspection and then repair.

Things You'll Need

  • Screw gun or wrench
  • Solvent
  • Soft lint-free rag
  • Washers
  • Nuts
  • Dynamic propeller balancing system
  • Propeller weights

Instructions

    • 1

      Examine the exterior of the spinner for corrosion, nicks, and cracks. Normal wear and natural occurrences, such as lightning strikes, can cause deformation to the spinner. Minor damage can concentrate in one area, creating high stress to the materials.

    • 2

      Unscrew the mounting screws on the propeller spinner and unfasten the unit. Remove any washers or nuts with a wrench. Inspect the spinner dome and bulkhead for proper alignment. Incorrect alignment often causes a propeller's imbalance, which creates the wobble.

    • 3

      Clean the spinner parts with solvent using a soft lint-free rag. Look for cracking or dents on the interior of the propeller spinner. Cracks and corrosion are unacceptable according to FAA guidelines and parts need to be replaced immediately. Even small cracks grow quickly into larger ones.

    • 4

      Install the new spinner by aligning the spinner and bulkhead placards. Once the position is correct, screw into place, using the shims as a guide. Replace washers and tighten any nuts.

    • 5

      Place sensors under the spinner to balance the propeller by using a dynamic propeller balancing system. Run the engine at 1800 to 2100 revolutions per minute. Corrective weights are inserted for proper balance under the spinner screws. Once the vibration is reduced, the weights are permanently installed.

Tips & Warnings

  • New spinners may need to be painted with airplane paints before installation.
  • Record any maintenance, inspections and repairs into a log book according to FAA guidelines.
  • Check for spinner wobble at different engine speeds.
  • Spinner wobble can lead to fatal accidents.
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References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

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