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Control Sticks

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Hi Tony,


I have for a long time appreciated the centre stick configuration on the Drifter as it gives an option of using either hand to operate it. It falls down with only having one throttle location though.


Have you considered the possibility of a two stick option in Thrusters as a way of "keeping up with the Jones's" on current modern aircraft options? I am just looking at giving Thrusters a better marketing appeal given the variety of imports available these days.


I just know I'm going to upset the purists!!006_laugh.gif.0f7b82c13a0ec29502c5fb56c616f069.gif006_laugh.gif.d4257c62d3c07cda468378b239946970.gif





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Guest terry

two sticks


I'm pleased to inform you that thrusters have two throttles, at least the t500 does and I think all the thruster two seaters do and with the centre stick it has the best of both worlds



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I don't think that I explained myself to well here Terry.


What I am asking is the possibility of putting two sticks in the Thruster to give it some better market appeal. I also own a Thruster so know about the two throttles and what I meant with the Drifter is that the throttle is only located on the left hand side - damned hard to reach from the rear seat if only one throttle fitted 006_laugh.gif.0f7b82c13a0ec29502c5fb56c616f069.gif006_laugh.gif.d4257c62d3c07cda468378b239946970.gif





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Guest terry

Haa I see, well I'm sure It's easily done, many people have done it in the zenith 701 but I'm sure with the thrusters you would have an issue with the legality. Nice thought though. I too have a t500



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Guest TOSGcentral

Hi Bill,



I am a bit late replying as last week was a bit hectic – mother died etc.



OK here are a few views as I have just gone part the way down this road with a Lightwing so can give some informed views.



First of all it can be done but the procedure would probably domino and may not anyway work too well.



What you are talking about would be a yoke arrangement with a central pivot and a stick on either end. That presents some challenges at least.



The torque tube on the Thruster is not fantastically strong and would have to be beefed up to counter for a difference in opinion of which way the stick should go and a strength struggle resulting.



There is then the throttle positioning. Where the dual throttles are normally is about ideal (other than they are a little too far forward for most folks) So the two prime issues are the yoke that would be required and any re-arrangement with the throttles.



Diverging to the Lightwing for a moment. The turkey who had previously owned it had already embarked on converting it to dual sticks. The first step had been to provide a centrally mounted throttle on the instrument panel.



This is OK in principle but the aircraft became a pig to operate with the central stick still in place. You are twisted all to one side with both hands in the centre of the cockpit. This is uncomfortable and totally unreasonable for any serious attempts at flying training.



However IF the Thruster had dual sticks then I would be inclined to put in a central single throttle but mount it high (say just aft of where the chokes are). That area can be beefed up easily and maintenance of the cables would be a lot easier.



A downside would be the discomfort of keeping your hand on the throttle all the time. As you know the Thruster throttles can creep under the influence of the powerful springs in the Bing 54 carbs.



Lookout is also impaired having an arm in that position. In flying ‘super Thrusters’ with a roof mounted flap leaver I found I was constantly banging my head and face on the deployed lever when trying to look around. If that were an arm instead I may be too tempted to bite it (nothing weird about me mate – I am a quite healthy carnivore!).



Now the yoke. Firstly there would really have to be a yoke as putting in dual torque tubes would require the devil of a lot of engineering surgery behind the seats in the fuel tank area where there is not a lot of room anyway.



Because of the four tube floor design the yoke would have to be relatively high. I have flown with several types using this design and what is not immediately apparent is that the individual sticks actually move up and down a fair bit as well as side to side. There is not much sideways leg room in a Thruster at the best of times and I really doubt that there would be enough. The yoke would get you under the thighs and the inner thighs would restrict aileron travel.



In the Lightwing the yoke option was investigated and the Lightwing factory said it could be done but would be a major modification and would consequently cost thousands to do – plus they would want the aircraft as a lot of welding would be required. They were also curious as to why do it as nobody had ever asked for dual sticks before.



So the Lightwing was returned to 95.25 bog standard and, surprise surprise, works perfectly!



Those are my off-the cuff views Bill. It is not a bad idea if it were done at initial design point. But there are plenty of single central stick types about now and while they may be ‘odd’ the first time that you meet one – you very quickly get used to them, and students know no different anyway.



The cost of a re-design would far outweigh any benefits in my opinion.









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Once again your intimate knowledge of the product has shown me up. I had not considered the leg room available and was just pursuing a personal preference.


My sincerest condolences for your mother, I am going through that at the moment as well.





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