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PROP DAMAGE
(From CP47, Page 12, January, 1986)

     Pusher aircraft are probably more prone to prop damage generally speaking, than tractor aircraft. As the builder/pilot and mechanic on your own EZ, you should be aware of this and should pay particular attention when you have been working on the engine, or inside the cowling. Leaving a small wrench on top of the engine can really ruin your day! When it comes out, it will really do a number on your prop. Before buttoning up the cowl, always do a very careful inspection for loose washers, nuts, bolts, even clipped ends of safety wire. all should be removed before starting the engine. Be sure not to leave a wrench or nuts or bolts on the wings or centersection/strake area -(don't laugh, it happens.) Unless you have a spare prop, the result can be a 6 to 8 week period of waiting for a new prop!
     One other thing, if you see damage to your prop, a small gouge or nick, do not assume that it was thrown up by the gear. It may have been, but in our experience if there is a gash in the prop, it almost certainly was caused by something coming out of the cowl. A screw, camloc, washer, whatever. Remove the cowl and carefully inspect the whole engine. Look for missing rocker cover screws or exhaust nuts. Almost without exception, when this has happened to us, we have found a place where something came loose. Be very conscientious about cleanup and tidiness in your engine compartment. Be sure and use new lock washers every time you remove the exhaust system. Check your rocker cover screws for tightness, and safety wire any bolt or screw that you have any doubts about. Above all , don't be careless about laying tools on top of the engine. Be careful and you will get excellent utility and life out of your props.