The first time I tried to take Mini Manta out in the snow it was bout 4" of fresh powedery snow and it instanly filled up the skirt and airbox from sucking all the snow through the prop. This time we had 3" or 4" of wetter snow and only about a half an inch of powedery snow ontop of that.
This time Mini Manta worked really good, I forgot to put my GPS in it this time so I didn't get any top speeds, but that turned out to be a good thing.....
I designed and built a new prop for the Mini Manta and this was the first time I had a chance to test it, it seems to work just as good, if not better than the origonal prop I had for it. When it warms up a little I'll measure how much thrust it has and also what RPM its maxing out at.
Now for the damage part :( I was turning and when I tried to let off of the throttle it didn't throttle down. So I was trying to turn and not hit anything, but I soon realized that I couldn't avoid hitting the trailer that was parked at the edge of the lot. Somehow I managed to get Mini Manta to run right into the tire of the trailer. I thought that it was going to get all smashed up and pieces would fly everywhere. Remember it was stuck at full throttle so it was going at least 15mph. Afterwards I was suprised by how little damage it did. In this picture you can see where it hit. The only damage at the point of impact was a scratch in the paint and tire mark, no cracks or dints there. But it did crack up one of the cockpit walls, crack the glass at the opposite side of the body, a crack in the glass near one of the duct supports, and the engine ripped out of the mount. Luckly it didn't hurt my brand new prop at all, it didn't even strike the duct.
Here is the damage to the cockpit wall, not to much of a problem to fix.
Like I said the engine ripped out of the engine mount. It turns out that when I was in a hurry to get everything put together before Cherokee I forgot to put the washer on the bottom side of the engine bolts. Well without the washers 3 of the bolts ripped right through the 3/4" plywood, so the engine tipped forwards. Luckly it didn't hurt the engine, and it was actually still running. This also shouldn't be a big problem to fix, I'll probably be able to get by with just putting some big fenderwashers on the bolts when I put it back together, But I think I'll need to re-glass the seams on the top of the engine mount, I think they are probably cracked, but right now I can't tell because the entire engine mount is covered with at least 1/4" of ice.
Here is the cracked glass at the other side of the body, this shouldn't be a big problem to fix either, just sand it down, peel off the bad glass and put on some new glass.
Here is the crack in the glass on the duct, it starts right where the support going from the mount to the duct is, so the engine breaking off probably put a lot of stress on it. Here are a couple of short 15s AVI video clips of me using it in the snow, we didn't get the crash on video. Snow video 1
Snow video 2
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