Sun, Jul 18, 2004
HotProp Becomes KievProp America
US importer changes name to avoid confusion, becomes distributor
So is it a KievProp or a "HotProp"? The answer is: both.
When B&B Sport Aviation started importing the KievProp into the country, the company knew of no name for it. John Hunter of Spectrum Aircraft -- the importer of various Aeroprakt planes from Russia -- was receiving his planes with this prop included and B&B got its first one from him. As time went on, B&B ended up importing them and chose the name "HotProp." KievProp agreed to it and so the name stuck.
Later, B&B Sport Aviation has become the sole distributor in America for the KievProp, and has formed a new subsidiary company named KievProp America. The new company is now working closely with KievProp in the Ukraine to begin warehousing propellers and related items for use on this side of the Atlantic. In addition to being a retail outlet, KievProp America will continue offering special OEM pricing to Ultralight and Sport plane manufacturers as well as their over forty dealers. Previous delivery times on back-ordered props have seen waiting periods as long as five weeks. To eliminate this problem, the prop hubs and protractors are now universal. With the use of a machined insert, a prop that would have been specifically designed for a Rotax 912 engine will now also fit the two-stroke applications. To further eliminate the possibility of back-orders, Kiev has doubled their production rate and the dealer network will now maintain some inventory of their own. The Kiev propeller began in 1989 in the SDB (Student Design Bureau) of KICAE (Kiev Institute of Civil Aviation Engineers). They were building an airplane and required a propeller. Since they already had some experience in propeller development and fabrication, they made their own. The original was fixed pitch and made of wood. It was so well liked by their friends that they started receiving orders for similar propellers. From the single-piece propellers, which were quite popular, they switched over to making three-blade wooden propellers. The first was made in 1993 and was used for the first "Aeroprakt-20" airplane. This was the beginning of their 3-blade propeller business. In 1996 they began to develop propellers with composite blades, and in 1997 organized production and began the serial-numbered series.
A very distinguishing feature of their product was the use of the autoclave. The blades come out in one piece, ready to go. Today they have developed the manufacturing of an entire range of three and five-blade propellers for clockwise and counter-clockwise rotation, and for engines ranging from 40 to 130 horsepower. Currently under development is an in-flight adjustable model which is being tested.
The blades on all models have metallic protection on the leading edge to protect them from erosion. This protection increases the life of the prop significantly and makes them very much suited for take-offs from water, unpaved surfaces such as sand, high grass, etc., and for flying in rain. Another important feature of our propellers is their low mass moment of inertia, which allows their use on Rotax engines.
With the low noise level and "soft" operation, the performance is very noticeable. The KievProps have passed the required tests proving their high quality and have proven their reliability and safety during many years of operation.
The propellers have successfully passed the entire certification test program and are Certified together with the "Aeroprakt-22" by DAeC (Deutsche Aero Club). KievProp continues to work to improve the propellers and make a wider range of products, which now include prop spacers and painted ready-to-install spinners. Today KievProp can supply propellers for any aircraft powerplant with a gearbox reduction and either direction of rotation.