Skywheels has a longstanding history of performance and safety as a high-inertia rotor system. Since 1985, over 3,000 blade sets have been produced. It is important to have a sense of safety and reliability from a time-tested and proven rotor system. The following information is provided to inform you about the design and benefits of Skywheels composite rotor blades and our product satisfaction guarantee.
Composites have gained acceptance as the material of choice in aerospace applications as there are no metals available today with the strength-to-weight ratios that cannot be surpassed by composites. Composites also give the designer the ability to further optimize the efficiency of a structural element by orientating the fibers in directions that are most appropriate for handling the applied loads.
Many forces are placed on a rotor system as it spins in the air and management of this system requires close tolerances necessary for smooth and efficient flight. The tooling and fabrication techniques necessary to produce composite rotors that meet these requirements are relatively expensive and difficult to master, but the resulting rotor system is superior in all areas.
Our rotor blades are fabricated using a time-tested process of fiberglass and carbon fiber in a bonding material. The fibers are oriented to provide stiffness from root to tip along the full blade diameter. Additional fibers are added to provide skin stiffness and a good bonding surface. Carbon fiber is added to address loads placed on the rotor blade. An extruded aluminum spar is bonded inside the leading edge, which contributes to the strength and provides the proper chordwise balance.
The Center Section is Skywheels' Trademark
Rotor blade manufacturers often use a standard aluminum hub bar.
Skywheels took another approach and engineered an airfoil-shaped composite center section, which minimizes drag and contributes to lift. Similar to the rotor blades, the center section is constructed with fibers oriented to provide strength.
A 12-inch deep pocket is molded at each end of the center section to accept the blade root and secured with blade retention hardware.
The wide chord of the center section (approximately 10-inches), in conjunction with the wide spacing of retention bolts, provides the in-plane bending stiffness and rigid blade pattern alignment that is necessary to minimize joystick shake.
Quality Assurance at Aerospace Standards
Through a joint partnership, Skywheels is manufactured by Blackhawk Composites, Inc. in Morgantown, Kentucky USA. Blackhawk specializes in aerospace composites manufacturing, and their process is certified AS9100, an aerospace quality assurance standard.
With proper care, use, and storage, our rotor system offers a lifetime of use.
Strength and Safety
The rotor system was designed to exceed the requirements of Federal Aviation Regulation Part 27 (requirements for normal category rotorcraft).
Skywheels was engineered for increased durability and damage resistance. Each element of the rotor system has been extensively tested, both statistically and dynamically, to determine the magnitude of the margins of safety under conceivable conditions. The chord of the rotor blade is 8-inches wide. Blade diameter ranges from 23-feet to 29-feet which covers a gross loaded weight range of 500 lbs. to 1,200 lbs.
The rotor systems vary in weight from 62 pounds for a 23-foot diameter set to 87 pounds for a 29-foot diameter set. While our rotors can be made lighter, we have found that the above weights provide a rotor RPM that is more constant and less susceptible to decay during unloaded conditions. An example of an unloaded condition is a pilot flares too quickly at the point of landing and unloads the rotor disc of lift at a critical point.
Product Satisfaction Guarantee
If you purchase a set of our rotors and are not satisfied, return them undamaged within 30 days of delivery. Skywheels reserves the right to inspect the product following the refunds portion of our > Policy Statement. If accepted, we will provide a 100% refund, less shipping costs.
Your continued confidence and enjoyment of our rotor blade system is of importance to us. If at any time and for any reason you feel you would like your rotor system inspected, static or chord balanced or tracked, we will be happy to professionally perform any or all of these services for you for a modest fee. You simply need to arrange for delivery to us and subsequent return to you of your blade system. This service is offered for the life of the Skywheels rotor system and it does not matter how or from whom you acquired your rotor blades.