Today was another beautiful day here and we have some flight testing to do. Since we really need to focus on getting the engine broken in, which requires high power settings (70-80%), we opened up the speed envelope today.
The main concern when increasing speed is ensuring we have a flutter margin. If your not sure what flutter is, look for a YouTube video… It’s spooky. To open the speed envelope, I started at 130 KTS (yesterday’s limit speed) and increased speed in 5 KT increments. At each new speed I did stick slaps and rudder kicks attempting to excite a flutter. Really we want to see it not flutter, but you get the point. I did this all the way up to 165 KTS IAS.
Incidentally, there are differing schools of thought on stick slaps and rudder kicks. A stick slap by a person is only about 2-3 hertz (cycles per second) and to excite a flutter it really takes about 40 hertz. So some people say they are ineffective and don’t prove flutter resistance. I tend to agree with that. However I conducted the stick slaps anyway. I certainly can’t see what it hurts, but I also understand the limitations of the testing. Your mileage may vary.
After we opened the envelope to 165 KTS, I focused on breaking in the engine. Remaining between 72% and 78% power for both flights, but slightly changing power settings every 10-15 minutes. We will be doing this for a few more flights until the temps decrease.
I did get down time to play with larger bank angles and up to approximately 2 G, 60 degree bank turns as well as some mild wing overs.
Oh and I almost forgot… Performance. While breaking in between 72-78% power, at 4500 feet and 56F OAT, IAS was 160-162, TAS 175, and with the winds, the Garaggio Ez joined the 200 KT club. (Without wheel pants, and on flight 3 before any tweaking.) the photo shows a 300 FPM descent, but it would hold 160 level. Perils of taking a photo and flying at the same time.