Home > VansAirForceForums

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

- Today's Posts | Insert Pics

Old 02-25-2020, 06:42 PM
rswalden's Avatar
rswalden rswalden is offline
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 101
Default Dangling Dongles

Smoke billowing out from under the panel while taxiing for takeoff in friend's RV-9..... Returned to hangar to troubleshoot.

Found a very fried metal-cased USB flash drive in a Dynon data dongle that had bumped against a hot 12Volt buss terminal behind the panel. The longer than necessary USB cable wasn't secured properly. When the metal flash drive contacted the 12V buss, the entire dongle cable went up in smoke and fried all of the data & power wires inside the Skyview HDX 10" display's 37-pin DB shell. It also fried the USB Wifi adapter plugged into the unit's built in USB socket. Fortunately, the actual Skyview unit survived without damage.

Lesson learned: Secure your wire bundles and data cables behind the panel and never use a METAL-cased flash drive near a hot voltage source.
Bob Walden (Waldo), CFII-ASMEL
KFFC "Falcon RV Squadron" Peachtree City, GA
RV-7A Tip-Up, IO-390, 600+ Hours
RV-12 (Sold)... RV-12 Transition Training
EAA/AOPA/Vans Air Force 2020 Supporter

Last edited by rswalden : 02-25-2020 at 06:53 PM.
Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2020, 10:33 PM
Zero4Zulu Zero4Zulu is offline
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Scio,Oregon
Posts: 238

Good reminder! Not flying yet but mine is dangling around still. Dynon supplies an all metal USB thumb drive with the HDX.
Steve S.
Rebuilding RV6A
Scio, OR
EAA Ch. 292
Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2020, 10:44 PM
erich weaver's Avatar
erich weaver erich weaver is offline
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: santa barbara, CA
Posts: 1,651

Great post.Wow, that sucks, but lucky it wasn’t a lot worse. I hate exposed hot wires, busses etc for this reason. Seems like every time I pull a battery I manage to do a short against the firewall with my hex wrench. While it’s only 12 volts, it always scares the bejeezus out of me. Once I flinched so bad I accidentally threw the wrench across the hangar and struck my buddy’s brand new Audi with it. Yeah, I know, remove the ground wire first and eliminate the problem. Still, The hot bolt on the PC-680 is awfully close to the firewall and the metal battery clamp down plate.

Reply With Quote
Old 02-26-2020, 04:53 AM
Vern's Avatar
Vern Vern is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Peachtree City, Ga
Posts: 1,026
Smile PC680 tip

The battery terminals are very close to the firewall. A quick tip is to put some duck tape on the firewall just above the battery just in case there is contact.
Vern Darley
Awarded FAA "The Wright Brothers 'Master Pilot' Award"- for 50 years safe flying

RV-6A N680V / RV-10QB N353RV
Luscombe 8E N2423K 50+years
Hatz Biplane N2423Z soon to be birthed
Falcon RV Squadron Founder
KFFC Hanger D-30
Peachtree City, Ga
770 310-7169
EAA Technical Counselor #5142
EAA Flight Advisor #486336
Reply With Quote
Old 02-26-2020, 06:31 AM
tomkk's Avatar
tomkk tomkk is offline
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Port Orange, Fl
Posts: 899

I'm somewhat surprised that he had a flash drive plugged into the back of the Dynon to begin with. The HDX has two USB ports in the back of the unit and, the last I knew, will only support one flash drive at a time. Plugging a flash drive into the back makes it hard to update the obstacle database and firmware, you need an accessible USB port to do that. I use one of the rear ports for a USB WiFi adapter and the other for a USB cable that runs to a panel mounted USB port.
Port Orange, Fl
EAA #51411
RV-12 N121TK ELSA #120845; first flight 06/10/2015; 700 hrs as of 02/2020
RV-12 N918EN ELSA #120995 Eagles Nest Project; first flight 05/18/2019
SPA Panther N26TK; First Flight 03/13/2020
Reply With Quote
Old 02-26-2020, 04:37 PM
RV7A Flyer's Avatar
RV7A Flyer RV7A Flyer is offline
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: US
Posts: 2,111

Originally Posted by erich weaver View Post
Yeah, I know, remove the ground wire first and eliminate the problem. Still, The hot bolt on the PC-680 is awfully close to the firewall and the metal battery clamp down plate.

Yep. No ground wire from battery to firewall/airplane, then no way to make a complete circuit.

Why are you not disconnecting the ground wire???
2019 Dues paid!
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 03:52 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.