Does not time fly!

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Jul 272016

674It’s been a while, I must admit. We have the odd bit of summer, interspersed with bouts of autumn and spring and winter. That’s summer for you! Given the general uncertainty of the results of the plans of our minister Dobrin (He who wants to put a ceiling on all model-aircraft activities of 100 meters, so that amazon can deliver their stuff) I have decided for the moment to go gliding. That way I will most certainly be above 100 meters! Once you set the mind to gliding, big ones, all of a sudden the universe throws a lot of them at you. Looking to acquire an 5 meter ship, and possibly 2 pieces 4 meter something. All of them in ‘GFK fuse, and the rest is up to you!’ format. I love it.

So, plans for large biplanes are shelved for now, plans for more F3A-X/Imac planes are shelved. We goes gliding!

I have motorized the PURES a while back, and I must admit that e-PURES makes life easier on the bones. And I get to go up real quick, because I did not have a suitable size motor in the box, I took something that looked about right. On a small 1000 mAh battery it goes up like a homesick angel. Almost as fast as the Orion. And I can repeat that a dozen or so times on one charge. What more do you want?

677Speaking of Orion, it’s getting there too, being tuned in that is. We had a few quiet evenings, which allowed me to tweak CofG without too many disturbances. I am getting to the stage where hands-off circling is happening. Move the battery just a tad more to the front, and we are there. (at least in quiet conditions) This flight was on a Sunday, around 4 in the afternoon. Not bad for one of the first outings!

Two hundred twenty in 10 secs.

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Mar 012014

Screen017No cheating! So with approx 40-48 Amps on the clock I get up to a very nice altitude in 10 secs. I’m sure someone will laugh at these numbers, but for me they are quite acceptable. I now need to dial in the ascent a bit, make sure it stays on track. For the rest, the weather is not the best for checking out the gliding part, but hey with 10 min plus flights on a miserable windy day, I’m happy.

Power4SLooking at the plot, you can see I have a rather soft/slow motor turn on.  That gives me a second to make sure nothing funny happens before launch. Peak power 700 Watt on launch, settling down to 550 Watt on the climb. Don’t really think I want to try that big prop yet! (Btw, the horizontal axis is not seconds, just x-number of samples)


4 Cells it will be!

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Jan 262014

IMG_20140126_123343Grabbed the battery by the leads, and did some radical surgery! The truth is, I did not have a 4S handy, but 2 pieces  of 2S were waiting to be used for something. It’s one of these things where the warning label says: Only do this under the supervision of a responsible adult.  Since I’m slowly converting to the yellow connectors, I went from there. My Unilog current sensor is one with 4 mm connectors. Therefore some surgery was required. The end result is a more compact unit, where one side still has my 4 mm anti-spark connector, while the other side has a matching yellow bit.  Size and weight wise I am more or less close to where I was before. The only trade-off is the capacity of the battery, it’s slightly lower of course. But since it’s a glider, who cares. I just finished charging and gave it a try.  57 Amps! Now we’re talking 😉 That’s approx 850 Watts static. Slightly higher then the previous 300 Watt. My battery is a Nanotech 2650 mAh, rated at 20-50C. 20C is 66 amps, so I am safe there. My controller is a Robbe BL 690 , which is good for 70 Amp peak. I know the motor is good for 450 Watt. Ouch!  Got another prop somewhere: 15 * 8 in stead of 17 * 8 Aeronaut. Testing again (static) I read 45 Amps or 675 Watt. That feels slightly safer for now. It used to take 15 sec’s at a leisurely pace to get to 100 odd meters.  Double the power is double the height? I’ll go for a 10 sec run first!

What happened to all the Big planes? Nothing, we are in an nature conservation area,  not allowed to fly combustion engines from Nov-April.  Never mind that my Carden makes less noise then a 1000 geese! It’s something we have to live with.


Just before the storm

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Jan 252014

Insider-Altitide-25Jan2014There’s a code yellow warning in the making says the weatherman. Don’t want to know what it is, but it sounds cold. I decided to go out anyway, and had a pleasant few flights. The plane must like the Jeti, since we are now finding thermal activity, when none would be suspected. I should not be surprised, but since I am still learning, I’m allowed to be surprised, ok? Seems what is happening at the moment is that the air temperature is dropping fast, and the land still has remnant heat from the very mild weather lately. So cold air above, warm land below, we’ve got thermal activity. I did find more of it in the direction of Lobith,  it could also be that the nice people in the village all turned up their thermostats 😉  All in all I was pretty pleased with my 13 minute flight, launching from approx 120 meters (I’m using a 15 second countdown timer on the motor switch, the performance is not exactly ballistic, only pulling 25 Amps from the battery. It is clearly suffering in the cold near zero temps.) Time to go for that 4S setup! Maybe if the weather is bad tomorrow?


This is the result of the afternoon. Still a bit of a challenge to get it to show up nice on googlemaps. I must write down what I do, so the process is repeatable.  The blob on the right is where I hung most of the time. Also did a few CG tests, and during the last flight, my prop did not want to fold anymore. Landed and checked for funnies, but nothing to be found. I put a fresh rubber band on the prop, and will retest soon. It’s a bit of a nuisance if you have to stall the plane, just to make the prop stop rotating! Landing with a running prop is NotGood. I also need fiddle with the vario settings, the current estimate is that the Insider has approx 50 cm/sec  still air sinkrate.  The vario settings should be so that it only sings when you enter a rising mass of air. Easier said then understood! And since I am very much in the setup phase, I know I can do better. Judging from the results of the 45 degree dive test, I need to shift the battery a bit further back. ( I think, must read G_T’s stories again.)

Taking advantage of early spring.

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Jan 222014

IMG_20140119_131459Hey, you never know, better to catch it while you can. It was actually quite pleasant last weekend, considering the time of year. Finally managed to get the Jeti and the Insider into some form of happy  co-existance. (Nothing to do with the stick-wiggling meatware of course) Anyways, I did reset my CG to where most people say it should be, 95 mm or thereabouts. Previously I was flying with the CG further back, somewhere 110-ish. Not sure if I like it. It does fly a lot faster this way, maybe it’s good for cold days? So far I haven’t done anything complicated with the setup, first basics, so I can land with confidence, within 5 paces ;-).  All the fun stuff with the vario will be taken care of when the time is there.

InsiderJan2014These are just setup flights, nothing spectacular to see. It’s nice to be able to see the volts of flight-battery  (which is not the motor battery) Of course there is some special wiring involved, but who cares. It’s a leftover from the old MPX days, when I was fighting what I thought was ‘interference’ from the main battery. Turned out to be a sub-optimal Tx battery that went funny, when the beeper was beeping.. It made for some very interesting flights shall we say. Once I find my CG, I will probably go for a 4 cell setup, and will try to loose this extra small Lipo. Maybe. I hate BEC’s! I’ll think about it.

LipoVoltsAnd yes, this coming weekend looks like it is going to be very cold, so it will be back to more server-fun.

I’m approx halfway where I need to be, thanks to yet another botnet-attack. Why do they not go and attack a big bank or something?

A good days work was done..

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Jan 042014

how on earth did I get all that in there?

Managed to recover another website. This one was in the medium difficulty group. Tomorrow I’ll go for the Real Stuff! In between some time to work on the Insider, it’s mostly general maintenance, checking all the bits and bobs, making sure things are working as designed. It’s amazing how much bits I managed to hide in that fuse. But no matter how hard I tried, that standard Jeti would not fit! In the end the solution was simple: get rid of the housing, it only adds extra weight where I don’t want it. It’s slightly narrower in the bare then the original ACT one, but the connectors are now in an awkward position. We’ll think about it!

Note to Self: try to get those pics lined up, there must be a plugin for that!


vario, gps, interface pcb, all hidden in the rear of the fuse












Happy 2014..

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Jan 012014

IMG_20131231_192139.. to you and yours and all the world. May this year bring you lots of happiness, good health and lots of great flying!

With the festivities out of the way, it’s time to return to rebuilding websites.  My progress is too slow, I know. I need to do it differently. Not sure how,  I’ll think about that tonight!

I decided to update the Insider with a Jeti RX. The 9 channel receiver did not comfortably fit in the designated space, so I removed the box and put some heat-shrink on it. Also checked the main battery, it will be good for a few more flights. There’s a fresh Vario on the way, to go with the Jeti-system. Basically the same as the previous unit, just less hassle (I hope). The ‘hassle’ is that I usually forget the charge the receiver 😉