Home > VansAirForceForums

- Donate yearly (please).
- Advertise in here!

- Today's Posts | Insert Pics

Old 01-08-2019, 02:33 PM
jeffwhip jeffwhip is offline
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 137
Default Push Button Start

I'm at that stage where I'm designing my panel and am considering a push button start. I'd like to get your opinion because I am torn...let me explain.

1. If I were to use a simple push button start (keyless) then it would make it much easier for someone to steal the airplane. I've read enough here to know that the most likely scenario is that someone breaks in and steals the avionics.

2. If I go this route, I also have a safety concern. Last summer I watched some kids pulling on the propeller of a friends plane after he had stepped away to take a phone call. I immediately intervened! I realize the likelihood of a plane starting from a child turning the propeller is slim, but If I go with a push button start I'm there seems to be a greater risk to this happening.

3. If I were to hide a ground switch that had to be down in order for the push button start to be hot, then I feel like I'm introducing another way for this to fail when I might need it the most (inflight engine failure).

4. Perhaps there is a way to program the Vertical Power Pro so that the CB to the start button is always popped on powerup, meaning I would have to manually "reset" it on every start up?

Well, those are my thoughts and would love to get your input. Has anyone else went this route and what did you do?
Rudder - Complete
Horizontal Stabilizer - Complete
Vertical Stabilizer - Complete
Elevators - Complete
Cabin Cover - Complete (wheewww!)
FWF - Complete
EFII 32 - In Progress
Dues Paid Through 2018
Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2019, 02:50 PM
B Cunningham's Avatar
B Cunningham B Cunningham is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 229

I have a key that has ON/OFF positions. ON - makes the push button Hot. OFF - makes the push button Cold. Take the key with you for added security. After start, I immediately move the key back to off in case of an inadvertent button push.
Ben Cunningham
RV7 N701VF
Bowman Field, Louisville, KY
Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2019, 02:52 PM
scrollF4's Avatar
scrollF4 scrollF4 is offline
Moderator, Asst. Line Boy
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Flower Mound, TX
Posts: 1,212

My decision to use a push button start is simple: We lost the key. Took an! find the key and proceed. Yes, I know, I could carry a spare key, but this made that particular risk go away for me.

Stolen aircraft? Insurance.

Sid "Scroll" Mayeux, Col, USAF (ret)
52F Aero Valley Airport, Roanoke TX (home of DR's Van Cave)
"KELLI GIRL" N260KM RV-7A tipper, YIO-360M1B with Danny King “Beautiful Doll’s” old Hartzell CS prop, dual PMAGs, dual SkyView, GTN-650, VPX, EarthX LiFePo4.
Nose Art by Smoke by Smoke System Helper.
90% done, 90% to go...

Proud and grateful 2019 -=VAF=- Contributor
Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2019, 02:58 PM
ALagonia ALagonia is offline
Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 162

I owned an FBO that had a maintenance shop years ago. Someone just barely touched a prop while the airplane was in the maintenance hangar and the engine tried to turn over. No one, fortunately, was hurt. Just wanted to point out that it can and has happened. When I see children and non aviators around airplanes I give them the speech about touching any propeller. I don’t point out the difference between piston and turbine aircraft because I doubt a non aviator could tell the difference.
Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2019, 03:06 PM
DaveO DaveO is offline
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Greenfield, IN
Posts: 296

Using the Vertical Power system you have to power it up before the starter button will engage. At least that was the way I wired the system. So there is no accidental starting the motor.

RV-7A N1243A Sold
#140479 RV-14A N1479B Reserved
Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2019, 03:21 PM
Dan Langhout's Avatar
Dan Langhout Dan Langhout is offline
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL USA
Posts: 476
Default Push Button

Push button inside a guard for start - master switch has to be on to provide power to the start switch and starter circuit. Ignition is controlled through a pair of locking toggle switches. Doesn't really protect against theft (but I wasn't really worried about that). You would have to leave a bunch of stuff on before it was a real safety issue.
FWIW - that's what I did.
Dan Langhout
2019 =VAF= Dues PAID . . . . .
RV-7 N528DP slow build
First Flight July 26th, 2014
428 hours and counting . . . .
Now based at Moontown (3M5)
Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2019, 03:25 PM
Mark33's Avatar
Mark33 Mark33 is offline
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Baton Rouge, La.
Posts: 555

Mine is a simple three position honeywell on/momentary start. I may end up incorporating a hidden toggle switch somewhere under the dash that I'll run the small solenoid engage wire through that I can turn off when I'm parked in an unfamiliar location. This would prevent accidental starts...and "maybe" prevent theft.

Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2019, 03:45 PM
AAflyer's Avatar
AAflyer AAflyer is offline
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Belle Mead, New Jersey
Posts: 292
Default Safety switch

I wired a guarded cut-out switch inside my forward baggage compartment...which is lockable. Lets me leave the canopy open without fear of someone pushing a hot starter button.
Bruce Windom
QB RV-8 N148BW
First Flight: Oct '16
AeroSport Power IO-360 180hp w/dual P-Mags
Catto 3-blade, with black carbon spinner.
10" Dynon SkyviewTouch. That's ALL.
2018 Dues Paid
Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2019, 03:49 PM
Canadian_JOY Canadian_JOY is offline
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,960

i have two aircraft, both with push-button start and toggle switches for the ignition. The Start button is under a guard. After the first airplane I changed approach and put the ignition switches in the Space Shuttle guards from Perihelion Designs.

Now for some reasoning...
How Do I Address Safety Concerns?
1) the START switch is NOT labelled, quite intentionally, and under a standard MS-style red toggle switch cover. One can't touch it by accident - it takes a conscious flipping up of the cover before the push button is exposed.

2) the START circuit breaker is secured with a Boeing CB collar when the aircraft is in a location where it may be touched by others or is out of my sight. The collar is a tough devil to get off, so a kid would have to have some pretty strong fingers to get it to work.

3) the ignition switches are in those fancy Space Shuttle guards from Perihelion Designs. They are straight AN toggle switches. The Space Shuttle guards allow a cable lock to be slid through them above the toggle switch levers. The only way one can get the toggle to flip to the "live" position is to remove the cable lock.

I'm sure somebody is going to ask why toggles for the ignition. That's because I've seen too many failed key switches. One of them I got to see up close, as our floatplane was being driven onto the rocks by a strong wind while the @#$%ing ignition key switch wouldn't allow the starter to engage!

I know you have a VPX which either complicates things further or gives you an easier solution to deactivate the start circuit, depending on how you want to approach it. I'm sure you'll scratch your head for a bit and come up with an excellent solution.
Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2019, 06:05 PM
ty1295 ty1295 is offline
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Jeffersonville, IN
Posts: 261

I just wired up my starter switch last week. The starter switch isn't hot until the position lights are on, even with the master on.

The mags are 2 separate switches.

My thought behind the position switch is, should an emergency happen in flight and I need to try a restart I wanted it to be natural, and not some odd combination to make the starter active again. On the flip side, when I park the airplane, and turn everything off, should a thief or innocent child be inside flipping switches they would have to first turn on the master, then then position lights, then starter. A sequence neither the kid or thief would probably think to do, but as the owner something that will become normal for me without thinking.

I hope it works and if someone sees a flaw in my idea I am all ears.
Jeff Scott
Proud to have flown with P. Wagstaff and some odd Russian.
RV9A #91247/#91434
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:00 AM.

The VAFForums come to you courtesy Delta Romeo, LLC. By viewing and participating in them you agree to build your plane using standardized methods and practices and to fly it safely and in accordance with the laws governing the country you are located in.