ESC Fire!

There’s a first time for everything and today that thing was my ESC spontaneously breaking into flames.

I took my GWS Tiger Moth, Ella, out for some flying today for the first time in a couple of months. I mounted my cameras, plugged everything in, did my pre-flight control check and … the motor stuttered and smoke began pouring up into the cockpit. Witness my mad, fumbling attempts to get the EC3 connectors unplugged.

The ESC is mos def toast. I guess I’m lucky that A) it happened on the ground and B) it didn’t spread to the rest of the plane. Things are pretty melty where the ESC was mounted but the plane appears to be basically fine.

Here’s what I found once I got the plane apart:

All but one of the solder joints had softened and let go. And looking under the heat sink, I found this:

Bye bye, 30 Amp EZ Flite ESC. All those little chips have ‘sploded right in half.

I’ll be needing a new ESC. Once the magic smoke’s been let out, they never work right again.

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