BTE Reaction Pneumatic 54 Retract Package

One of the earliest design decisions for the R54 was that it had to have retracts. Right about that same time, Robart introduced their 500-Series for jets. The retract units are smaller and lighter than their popular 600-Series, but are made with rugged, aircraft-quality materials. Believe me, I have put these units to the test and they passed with flying colors! The units come equipped with 3/16" wire struts bent specifically for the R54. Wire struts were chosen to keep it simple and less expensive.

But it takes more than the units and struts to add retracts to your model. This package has everything you need, down to the last nut and bolt, to install retracts in your R54. Even if this is your first retract installation, this package takes all the guesswork out of what can be a complicated system.


 1  Robart #563 Nose Wheel 100° Retract Unit
 2  Robart #530 Main Wheel 90° Retract Units
 1  Set 3/16" Wire Struts (1 nose wheel, 1 left main, 1 right main)

 1  Robart Medium Air Control Kit (tank, connectors, air line, retract valve, pressure gauge, fill port, fill fitting)
 3  1/8" x 1" x 2-1/2" Plywood (material for mounting retract valve, filler valve, and pressure gauge)
 1  2-56 x 6" Threaded Rod (for linkage from retract servo to retract valve)
 1  2-56 Nylon Clevis (for retract valve; nylon chosen to avoid metal-to-metal contact)

 1  48" nylon-Coated Steel Cable (for nose wheel steering - cut into two 24" pieces)
 2  Du-Bro 2-56 x 1/2" Swivel Ball Links (for nose wheel steering; includes hardware)
 2  Du-Bro 2-56 Rigging Couplers (for nose wheel steering; use to adjust cable tension)
 4  Steel Crimping Sleeves (for steering cables; loop cable through twice then crimp)
 2  .130 o.d. x 6" Nylon Tubes (for steering cables)
 4  1/4" x 1/2" x 3/4" Grooved Hardwood Tube Retainers (for mounting nylon tubes)

 8  4-40 x 3/8" Socket-Head Cap Screws (for mounting nose wheel retract)
 4  4-40 Blind Nuts (for nose wheel retract, install in F-2 for front flanges)
 4  4-40 Hex Nuts (for nose wheel retract, use to mount top flanges to receiver shelf)
 4  4-40 Flat Washers (for nose wheel retract, use under hex nuts)
 8  6-32 x 1/2" Socket-Head Cap Screws (for mounting main wheel retracts, use 4 on each unit)
 8  6-32 Blind Nuts (for main wheel retracts, install in wing)

 1  Instruction Sheet with Installation Tips

Main Landing Gear Mount and Wheel Well
This is the R54 left-hand wing panel, viewed from above. As you can see, the landing gear mount is carefully designed to spread the loads to the surrounding ribs, spars, and sheeting. The thick wing allows for deep wheel wells. Keep in mind that the R54 is designed to accept these Robart retracts - other brands may require some minor modifications to the structure.

Main Wheel Retract Installed
The main wheel units simply bolt to the plywood landing gear mounts. Just outside the view of this photo is a small hatch in the bottom wing sheeting that makes it simple to route the air lines (and servo leads). The wire struts all feature a shock absorbing loop to reduce the strain on the retract units.

Nose Wheel Retract Installed
An interesting feature of the nose wheel unit is that it has two sets of flanges to allow mounting to a bulkhead (firewall mount) or to a flat plate (belly mount). The R54 takes advantage of this by incorporating both a bulkhead and a flat plate for extra strong mounting. There's no need for the complexity of gear doors in a sport model like this - save those headaches for that ultra-scale model on your "to-do" list.

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