"Just for the sound of it!" (c) 2006 larry berg
(Answers the question: "Larry! Why are you doing that?")

June 2008, checkout my new Youtube video: Starting my engine with Lithum Polymer battery

I bought a few surplus factory made gas turbine engines to play with.

It's a Rotax/Lucas CT2023/I Gas Turbine Starter/APU. It weighs 60 pounds. It has a free turbine and gearbox with an output of 85HP at 3150 RPM.

update: 11/2010: Checkout this amazing new engine: PT50 Turboshaft Engine at kutriebresearch.com.

PT50 specs are a lot like mine:

* "radial flow compressor stage" (mine is centrifugal or centripetal?)
* "reverse flow annular combustor and an axial flow turbine stage"  (same)
* "Six high pressure atomization nozzles " (I have 5 )
* "gearbox with a 19.6:1 reduction ratio" ( same here ).
* "engine driven fuel pump, oil pump," (me too)
* "two scavenge pumps" (I have just one),
* "starter/generator" (mine is just a starter.)
* "30.6 pounds,"  (mine is twice that, pluse)
* "in production now", (mine is only surplus, from the 1970's)

I want a PT50 for my ultralight helicopter!  See Youtube.com/LarryCanFly, or just Google: larrys jet.



Update 2007: --- new hub!

The old hub and shaft (shown down below on this page) worked great! About 100 flights over a couple of years so I took it and everything I learned to a real professional machine shop and let 'em loose on a re-make project. Here's the new hub with integral heat sink fins and a titanium shaft:


Titanium IVO Prop pitch adjusting screw

Here I admit I've gone too far trying to save weight. The IVO prop pitch adjusting screw weighed 0.3711 pounds so I cut it down, drilled it out and got the weight down to 0.1593 pounds. Less than half. So that's cool, but I didn't quit there, I wanted to try titanium so bought a shaft for $50 on eBay and paid a guy $100 to make it for me. It weighs just 0.0931 pounds. Way less! But wait, how much did the savings cost me? Duh. I spent $150 to save about 1/20 pound - gee, that is about $3000 per pound. Kinda insane I guess. Hey, they say the first step to recovery admitting the problem - OK already, I admit it, I am insane crazy over turboprop ultralights, gas turbines, and helicopters:-)) Though this has got to be the coolest IVO prop pitch adjusting screw you've ever seen. Order now, $150. Paypal to b(at)pfranc.com specify "Titanium IVO prop pitch adjusting screw!" Allow 3 weeks for manufacture and delivery.

The photo below was taken in the fall of 2004 at the close of a great season of turbo-prop-ultralight flying.

I noticed my home made bearing hub was getting pretty hot and suspected the exhaust was the cause so installed deflectors, which didn't help. So I surmized it was getting hot via conduction with the hot oil of the crankcase and so added large holes for air circulation which helped some and so I then added heat sinks which has helped a lot.

The small round blue thing hanging on the right side is the electric starter motor. It's 28 volts, 1.75HP, weighs 3.5 pounds.

I installed a very cool in-flight adjustable IVO Prop.Matter of fact, I liked the prop so much I've become a IVO Prop dealer! So if you want to buy an IVO, let me make you a deal. Tell me what you want by e-mail or call at 541-479-8087, and I'll get you the right prop at the right price.

But before I could put on a prop I needed a shaft bearing and hub, so I made one. The first flight was done with this hub made from parts from another gearbox and a bearing from another ultralight.

I had to buy a steel shaft, turn it down, and cut splines into it. I have never cut a spline and so had to learn how to. This it the first and only spline I've ever made and it works really good except it's a bit lose so I shim it a bit.

And here is the first hub with bearing fitted into it.

And here is the splined shaft in the hub mounted on the engine. The area of the shaft sticking out where my fingers are is where the prop hub will go. The prop hub is held onto the shaft with one pin that goes through the hole near my thumb.



Below here I've compiled a list of others who are playing with factory made turbine engines. If you are interested in making your own engine, see what I didhere: Larry's home made gas turbine


Jerry E. Green Has not one but two gasturbine powered lawn mowers, and much more. Go visit, share his music, photos,and great sence of humor (needed for this sport). A very enjoyable site. Thanks Jerry!


Steve’s Turbine Powered Airboat Project using a 160hp GTP70-52 just like one I have except his is a lot closer to running than mine.

Chris Bennett's Lucas APU/Starter gas turbine engine is a newer version of my Rotax engine.

Roger Marmion's Lucas APU/Starter.

Ian Bennett (notrelated to Chris) a Lucas APU/Starter too! And a bunch of other engines.

TTL = Trubine Technologies Ltd. These guys are making the TRJ-200, a new very cool engine. They actually make the engine from scratch in their shop! From the molds to finished product. Wow!

Jim Vos is selling JFS-100 APU's converted for use as a turboprop!

John C. Williamsonhas a very cool APU/Starter called the Solent and has many photos of it andall it's parts too.



IPO: 3Jan99

Please send your comments, ideas, whatever ==>: click here....thanks!

Some of these ads are soooo cool. Stuff I didn't know existed.