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Cleaning Rotor Blades


RJP
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Dawn dish soap works great. We used it to clean the tail rotor blades on the CH-53E, VH-60N, and the VH-3 helos when I was stationed at the Presidential Helicopter Squadron. They are always spic and span after every flight. Klasse All in One is what we used to polish them and make the leading edges shine.

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I suggest checking the Airframe Maintenance Manual for approved and prohibited products/substances before applying anything.

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IMO….

 

Mike is correct. Only approved consumables should be used. However, most manufactures allow for the use of Carbon-X which is a great product.

 

Caution with the use of store bought over-the-counter soaps or polishes. Most contain sulfites which can accelerate corrosion. Dawn is often used as a default cleaner because it doesn’t contain sulfites…. However, I’ve never seen a manual approving the use of Dawn dishwashing soap. WD is debatable. If anything, only on the SS leading edge abrasion strip(s).

 

Another item is furnisher polish on the windscreen. Debatable… One thing witnessed, if you use any kind of “lemon” furniture polish or wax, then be sure, your Plexi will turn milky over time……

Edited by Spike
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IMO….

 

Mike is correct. Only approved consumables should be used. However, most manufactures allow for the use of Carbon-X which is a great product.

 

Caution with the use of store bought over-the-counter soaps or polishes. Most contain sulfites which can accelerate corrosion. Dawn is often used as a default cleaner because it doesn’t contain sulfites…. However, I’ve never seen a manual approving the use of Dawn dishwashing soap. WD is debatable. If anything, only on the SS leading edge abrasion strip(s).

 

Another item is furnisher polish on the windscreen. Debatable… One thing witnessed, if you use any kind of “lemon” furniture polish or wax, then be sure, your Plexi will turn milky over time……

 

I believe that's anything with ammonia in it

 

On a side note, I never thought about waxing the blades. It makes perfect sense. An inch of MP though? Never thought skin friction would have THAT much of an impact...

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Waxing isn't going to produce great performance margins, but it makes getting the bugs off each time a little easier.

 

A soft shop cloth works fine with water for washing. Any soap or any material that's left on the blade isn't good; thorough rinsing is appropriate. Turtle wax works just fine. In most cases, a simple washing with water or light mild soap is fine, followed by a thorough rinse. wax, let dry, polish off, you're done. Makes it much easier to clean next time.

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I've seen a set of poorly painted blades cost a 500F 250lbs of lifting capacity at max continuous, (so much for quality control)

I'd believe waxing to smooth out the gaps and ridges could get some of that back. With a properly painted set of blades it should not matter.

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