Much like grease is the most commonly overlooked maintenance item, Reverse Rollers tend to come up as really the only replacement part we send out with any regularity. Most of that activity is related to older props that still have the older smaller diameter bolts that were prone to bending and/or shearing off due to impact. After we upgraded to larger diameter bolts about 10 years ago the problems more or less went away but we have continued to improve the design for another reason.
A lack of grease in the hub for prolonged periods often results in ‘scoring’ of the blade roots where the roller contacts the blade in reverse and subsequently stays in that position due to the lack of lubrication. The blades can often be repaired, and no harm done to the rollers, but we did decide to change the profile of the rollers so as to increase the surface area of the contact, thereby reducing the point load that was causing this scoring.
The end result is the tri-lobe rollers that spread the load across a larger area and for good measure we added grease caps onto them and the grease helps keep any debris and precipitate off the bearing surfaces.
It’s important to note that the rollers don’t spin or anything, they merely rotate a 1/3 of a turn or so when reverse is engaged and hold the blade in the reverse position. Most people never grease the old ones, but it can’t hurt and if it keeps mineral deposits out of there so much the better.
Worth also noting that your annual inspection should include a quick look at the rollers to make sure the bolts are tight and that they are rotating freely. If you have any issues contact us as they are easily upgraded to the latest version.