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  #11  
Old 11-23-2019, 05:07 PM
Ron RV8's Avatar
Ron RV8 Ron RV8 is online now
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Okanagan Valley BC, Canada
Posts: 471
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I have a Catto 3 blade 70x74 powered by an O-375 on my -8...

Biased for cruise, I see about 2200 rpm static and about 2500 at WOT and 10,500' giving a true airspeed of about 170 kts...

Take-off and climb is slightly more anaemic than some of my formation RV friends, but not excessively so.

I have nickel leading edges and would not be without them on this prop. In five years and ~630 hrs there is no abrasion apparent even considering flying into a number of gravel runways in the Yukon. My horizontal stab has not been quite so lucky. I do not hesitate to fly through even heavy rain at WOT, but have lost a bit of black paint off the back of the nickel, easy to touch up...

Something I have noticed with the 3 blade, asides from being smooth, is the ability to slow quickly when coming into formation... Pulling back to idle is probably more effective than the brakes I had on the Mooney...

YMMV...
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Okanagan Valley BC, Canada
RV-8 Completed Dec 2013

Membership renewed Sept 8, 2019

Last edited by Ron RV8 : 11-23-2019 at 05:14 PM.
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  #12  
Old 11-23-2019, 07:49 PM
Stewbronco Stewbronco is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Langley BC
Posts: 81
Default Perfect

Many thanks. Very much the feedback I was looking for ! Was definitely leaning towards nickel leading edges but I think for sure now.
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  #13  
Old 11-23-2019, 11:56 PM
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AX-O AX-O is offline
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: SoCal
Posts: 2,374
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueflyer View Post
Do those of you with the Catto nickel leading edges reduce your RPM when flying through rain? If so, to what RPM do you reduce?
Not at all. No change in operation.
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The information that I post is just that; information and my own personal experiences. You need to weight out the pros and cons and make up your own mind/decisions. The pictures posted may not show the final stage or configuration. Build at your own risk.
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  #14  
Old 11-24-2019, 01:55 AM
Stewbronco Stewbronco is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Langley BC
Posts: 81
Default Aerobatics

Any body flying aerobatics with CATTO 3 blade ? Is there a MAX RPM limition ?. I notice in the pictures on CATTO website that none of the aerobatic section pictures show any one with nickel leading edges ... now I understand that is probably just weight and flexibility consideration but does anybody know of a limitation in this regard on the prop itself or the addition of the nickel leading edge ?. I doubt it but worth asking. Cheers. Stew

Last edited by Stewbronco : 11-24-2019 at 01:59 AM.
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  #15  
Old 11-24-2019, 08:43 AM
brad walton brad walton is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Cypress, TX
Posts: 519
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I told Craig Catto I wanted to see Van's numbers at 75% power. He built me a 66 inch X 75 inch 3 blade. This was pre nickel leading edge. I have a Superior IO360 with 9 to 1 pistons, port and polish and balanced, cylinders bench flow matched on my RV 8. He nailed it and at 8000 ft density altitude and 2700 turbine smooth rpm's, I get 178 knots true airspeed. This was the speed Van's used to post for a 180 hp RV 8. Normal cruise is 2475 rpm which yields 162 ktas at about 8 gallons per hour depending on altitude.
I put prop tape on it at one point and lost 3 or 4% in speed for the same rpm. That came off immediately.
Van's used to have a good write up in the construction manual about why a climb prop will out perform a cruise prop in all flight regimens and my experience supports their conclusions.
Wish I could post pictures as I would put up some screenshots of the amazing performance the combination of a light RV 8 and Catto 3 blade prop yields

Last edited by brad walton : 11-24-2019 at 08:59 AM.
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  #16  
Old 11-26-2019, 04:27 PM
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Lufthans Lufthans is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Hilversum, The Netherlands
Posts: 63
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Catto 68 inch without nickel leading edges, 160 hp O-320 on a not very clean airframe, we were just about able to reach the 212 mph vne in level flight, and on the other end of the spectrum climb 1800 to 2000 fpm solo with half fuel.

Everybody tells me that our ASI must have been way off, since the aircraft should not be able to do this. However the backup steam gauge was showing the same speeds. So maybe a static port not doing so well? Yet showing the same altitude readings as the other aircraft when formation flying. And flying the socks off a 180 hp retractable geared Sequoia Falco.

Other than the outstanding Vans design, I really "blame" that Catto prop.

Compared to my hugely propped (74", wide-bladed, constant speed MT) Jodel, which also has a geared, high compression engine, pulling the throttle really didn't do much. So the -4 would not give me the instant braking that I was used to and required a bit more planning when joining a formation, or in short field landing. Small price to pay...

Good prop!

I really should not have sold my share in that aircraft....
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  #17  
Old 11-26-2019, 10:14 PM
bifft bifft is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Utah
Posts: 82
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stewbronco View Post
Any body flying aerobatics with CATTO 3 blade ? Is there a MAX RPM limition ?. I notice in the pictures on CATTO website that none of the aerobatic section pictures show any one with nickel leading edges ... now I understand that is probably just weight and flexibility consideration but does anybody know of a limitation in this regard on the prop itself or the addition of the nickel leading edge ?. I doubt it but worth asking. Cheers. Stew
I have an older (2004) 3-blade that is labeled with a "Design RPM 2800, Prop Red Line RPM max. 3200". No nickel leading edge.
I've only just got started on my aerobatic testing and I try to keep under Lycoming's 2700 RPM limit. To do that I have to throttle back whenever the speed goes over 160 KIAS. (Now that I have the gear fairings on, I can exceed this in level flight).

I do find that if I keep the G load up (in the 3-4 range) when pulling out of a loop or whatever there is no problem with overspeeding the plane or prop.
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  #18  
Old 11-27-2019, 07:20 AM
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Nived17 Nived17 is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Williamsport, PA
Posts: 46
Default 3-blade catto real world experience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stewbronco View Post
Hi all .... looking for some real world experience. Obviously from any search here CATTO makes a great prop and sterling company / people .
I have RV-4 with 0-360 ...1025 lbs empty ... planing CATTO 3 blade 68"x 75" ( biased toward climb performance)
Catto says about 2350-2400 RPM static and 2800 WOT @7500' and about 200 MPH
Looking for any performance figures with same or similar engine / prop combo and of course opinions and comments. Many thanks. Stew
I put my down payment on a 3 blade nickle edge Catto at Oshkosh 2018. The prop was delivered November 2018 (Its a WORK OF ART!) but it had the wrong prop bolt size holes. I needed to work with them and ended up having a local machine shop ream them to the proper size. A week later, I then installed it on my 160HP RV-4 and flew it and found that I could easily spin it up to 3000RPM only getting about 160kts TAS in level flight. After a month or so of experimentation, Nicole at Catto quickly added me to the queue for another higher pitched prop. They said that it would take a few months.

Fast forward to Oshkosh 2019. Cleaning the plane the week before flying up still waiting on the new pitched prop, I found this:




This is the "cracking of the nickel" that people here have discussed.

Would you believe that Nicole and Craig 2 day shipped me a loaner prop to get me to Oshkosh!? I was so happy. I took delivery of the final pitched prop 3 weeks ago (10/31/19 about one year after receiving the original prop). Below are the pictures and some numbers including the final pitch. I see right around 170kts TAS at 2750 RPM above 7,500DA. I also still get 1,200-1,500fpm climb solo and last week i was going in and out of a 1,700ft strip at max gross no issues at all what so ever!





Its a fantastic prop, and the Catto family will take care of you, you just need to be patient while they work to design you the best prop that they can.
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  #19  
Old 11-28-2019, 02:16 AM
Stewbronco Stewbronco is offline
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Langley BC
Posts: 81
Default Nickel leading edge

There is NO doubt that CATTO is both quality product and that they offer incredible support based on everything I have ever read on forum . However the issue with the nickel leading edge concerns me greatly . I was under the impression any problems were a thing of the past but your experience is far more recent than I thought . I am convinced that I need the nickel leading edge but I want no part of a section of it coming off in flight with the attendant problems ! I had a call into CATTO today ( as scheduled) but we didn't get a chance to connect but I really must get their latest info on this ! Many thanks Stew
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  #20  
Old 11-28-2019, 06:07 PM
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smokyray smokyray is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: TX32
Posts: 1,862
Default Prop me up

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stewbronco View Post
Hi all .... looking for some real world experience. Obviously from any search here CATTO makes a great prop and sterling company / people .
I have RV-4 with 0-360 ...1025 lbs empty ... planing CATTO 3 blade 68"x 75" ( biased toward climb performance)
Catto says about 2350-2400 RPM static and 2800 WOT @7500' and about 200 MPH
Looking for any performance figures with same or similar engine / prop combo and of course opinions and comments. Many thanks. Stew
Stew,
I was Craig’s first RV 2 blade beta test customer on my 150HP RV4 back in the early 90’s (68/68) Later I would test three more of his props including my current Gen II 2-blade prototype on my 180HP RV6”X”. (which sports the very first Nickel LEP) After nearly 1000 hours, 15 years and lots of punishment it’s still in great shape.

Performance? That’s easy, excellent. 70/70 pitch. 700-1000’ takeoff roll, 1500-2000’ FPM climb, 170 KTAS at 8500’ 2600 RPM 8.5-9gph. (Assuming properly faired, cowled, trimmed etc) I concur on climb pitch, it’s where you’ll spend most of your time and if you like acro and dogfighting (like me) you will appreciate the responsiveness. If you do go somewhere, go high where MP isn’t a factor with higher RPM.

In 25 years Craig’s customer service has been beyond superb and his props exceed expectations.
Have faith.

V/R
Smokey


RV6X (yes, it’s in my garage!)

Last edited by smokyray : 11-28-2019 at 06:55 PM.
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