*** I have the first portion of the document written that describes how to program up a glider with a 2-servo wing, and a variable throttle control for the motor (both b-fly and throttle on J3). I thought it could be useful to include the text in a post. For easier reading the document is found here:
Hitec Aurora A9 RC Sailplane setup examples for several types of gliders
1st A glider with a 2 servo wing, a V-tail and a motor w/variable throttle control
2nd A glider with a 4 servo wing (2 aileron, 2 flaps), a V-tail and a motor w/variable throttle
This document describes in exact detail the method and steps necessary to program an Aurora A9 radio to support the model types as shown above. Flight conditions Launch/Thermal, Normal, and Land (flaps + enables crow) are explained. A throttle timer to track engine runtime and a total flight timer are also setup.
This setup will use the following switch and slider configurations. For conditions, Up is on, down is off. In general all switches can be flipped down when turning on the radio into initial state. Throttle lock is switch based and needs to be toggled before powering on the plane.
Throttle Lock: switch F: upper left switch, larger is used since it’s on the same side as the throttle and very easy to hit with your left hand. It’s suggested not to use G on the right since it could be accidentally hit when activating dual rates on switch D.
Dual Rates: switch D: All dual rates are activated using the same switch. Up is high, down is low rates.
Flight Timer: switch A: This switch is used to track the total flight time. Up is on, Down for off. Flip to up when preparing to take off.
Engine Timer: The throttle control is used to activate an engine run timer. This is a down counting timer used to track remaining engine time. I track engine time run time to assure enough power to land safely. The value you use for your timer will depend on your flight times with your batteries. Start low and increase as you gain experience and are able to determine how much run time you can get while still leaving plenty of flight time.
Throttle Control: The left stick, J3 is used to control the throttle. Down is off, up for on.
Crow/B-Fly Control: The left stick, J3 is used to control the Crow. Up is for ailerons UP, down is for ailerons Down.
Switches used to activate the flight conditions:
switch E: Forward (0) = Landing Flight Condition
Center (1) = Normal flight
Back (2) = Launch/Thermal flight Condition
Flight Conditions: priority based, larger number is higher priority (5 > 2) in case of switch conflicts.
1. Normal; trimmed for normal flight, reasonable speed for safe glide in rough air
2. Launch (or Thermal); adjusted for increased lift with slight flaps for increased lift
a. Thermal, surfaces adjusted as w/Launch allowing for slower flight and more lift. Launch and Thermal conditionss are essentially the same, other than Launch condition is under power with the motor and Thermal condition is when gliding with the engine off. The throttle remains controlled by the throttle control.
3. Landing; adds in down elevator mixing; J3 used to increase crow; Throttle is disconnected
Below here not implemented at this time
4. Reflex; trailing edge lifted slightly to increase speed between thermals. [Unable to program this in… no options for adding it that I see]
Crow is not a Flight condition, but adds to the Landing flight condition. Crow is only enabled in Landing Condition.
This section will explain how to programming all of the features common to all model setup types as shown at the top. This section needs to be completed for every glider to be setup.
1. Select a model memory location to use. In the System Menu, select New to add a model. This is preferred rather than renaming another due to potential conflicts as the settings are made.
2. Setup the glider with defaults for power and spoiler. In the Channel definition menu, assign Throttle to J3 and Spoiler to RS. You do this by clicking on the right side of each option and then select set to select your control.
3. Sync your transmitter with your receiver. This will allow you to setup the directions, throws, end points etc.
4. Setup the servo directions. In the Model menu, select Reverse to get the direction of movement for each of your surfaces correct.
5. Trim your surfaces. In the Model menu, select Sub-Trim and center your surfaces.
6. Limit your throws to avoid problems. In the Model menu, select EPA and use the features to limit the throws of any surfaces that could possibly cause binding or issues. While EPA’s can be used to implement features such as Aileron Differential, it’s suggested to use the feature in the menus to accomplish this and thus avoid compounding problems down the road. For example if you use EPA aileron differential you might limit your spoiler use where using the Aileron differential feature avoids this compounding problem.
7. Limit your max travel to avoid compounding features. In the Model menu, select T.Limit and use similar to EPA to set the max possible end point for any surface in either direction
8. Turn off the Plane At this point I turn off the plane and do most of the setup without the need to work about the motor kicking in by an accidental bump. Once the features are set, I turn on the radio and plane and step through each of the switches to assure it’s working correctly.
9. Enable Throttle Lock. In the Model menu, select ThroLock. I use switch F and set it to up for Off, and down for On. Thus the throttle is locked form working when the switch is ON. You must toggle the switch after turning on the radio before plugging in your plane motor to assure the state of the switch. It will not turn on unless you do this.
10. Add flight conditions. In this case the conditions are added simply to name the switch positions as the actual programming will be done with the menus.
a. Add 2 as Launch.
b. Add 3 as Landing.
c. These are priority ordered with the larger number having preference. Since landing is always a critical state I make it last whenever adding a flight condition.
11. Setup dual rates and Expo. In the Model menu, select DR&Exp.
a. I use switch D to control my dual rates. Select Switch D for AILE, ELEV, and RUDD. Place all 3 on the same switch to avoid any problems.
i. I use a rate of 80% for ELV and RUDD, and 70% for AILE. Exp is a personal thing based on your feel, I use an EXP of -65%. Double check the curve to make sure it looks correct, down to the left and up to the right.
12. Setup Aileron Differential. In the Model menu, select Ail Diff. Instead of trying to set the individual percentages for each surface, use the Rate feature and set it to -60%. You will see the proper surfaces values change. This can be modified depending on the amount of adverse yaw you experience in your model. Dial it up or down to preference between flights.
13. Set Flight Timers. I set one timer to trigger off of the throttle, once the throttle is above about 3 clicks it starts to count down. I set a time value that I know gives me plenty of engine time and leaves me plenty more to soar. 5 minutes of engine run time is a reasonable starting point. For timer 2, I tie it to Switch A and have a counting timer. This switch enables me to time the entire flight. When the flight ends I’ll have a total flight time along with an engine run time.
14. Program Mix for Throttle to ELEV. Select a programmable Mix #1 to enable it. Click on THRO first, then ELEV next. I leave the Switch to NULL which means that the mix is always enabled. I want this to happen whenever I use the throttle. Your exact values will depend on how your glider feels but a starting value is to set the H and L rates to -10%. To keep it from kicking on early, set the OST to -10% also. This means that at 0 throttle there is no elevator adjust. If you don’t do this, it can mess with your elevator neutral state. On a V-tail this mix will work with the V programming and adjust both surfaces. TIP: If you wish to be able to turn on and off this mix, program it to a switch. You can select switch B and have up for on, down for off. I use B for turning on and off features I normally leave on but might want to turn off in a critical situation.
15. Setup Landing Menu. In the Model menu, select Launch. Select Switch E and set the “On” state to the Up position on the screen (E0). Set SPO to 25%. This adds in spoilers via the ailerons to your landing state. You can also add some build in Flaps here which will be activated by simply throwing the switch. I prefer to dial in my flaps with the J3 Gimbal on approach.
________________________________________Glider with 2-servo wing, V-tail and variable motor control
This section describes the settings necessary to accomplish the variable motor control
I found a very interesting way to program the Throttle to be on J3 as typical for a powered plane, and then convert J3 over to the Crow control for landing a glider. It’s not a perfect solution as there is a small catch but it seems to be working well in bench testing.
1. Setup Throttle and B-Fly on the Throttle. Previously you set the Throttle on J3 and the Spoiler on RS. These are the default values the build in menu options use. We are going to use that with some modification to accomplish what we need.
2. Disconnect Throttle in Landing Condition. Above we added a Landing flight configuration to E0. We are going to use this flight condition to trigger our b-fly but we need to disconnect the throttle to keep them from conflicting. Program the throttle lock to the same switch as the flight condition, so E0 in this example when throttle lock is on (E0 state) there is no throttle enabled, when throttle lock is off the throttle works as normal. This in Launch and Normal modes, Throttle works, in Landing it is disabled and the same J3 stick will now be used to control the Crow-Aileron lift.
3. Add in butterfly programming using the regular b-fly mix menu and set it up so it’s only on in the Landing condition (S in Landing mode, values set; C in other modes and values clear).
4. In E1 state, throttle works, powers the plane and there’s no b-fly mixing
5. In E0 state, throttle is locked out, b-fly mixing is enabled and you control the b-fly mix with the throttle stick.
6. Both the throttle and B-fly are off at the bottom throttle position so the key is to transition states when the stick is down.
7. The small caution is this: Throttle lock will not engage if the motor is running so the transition must happen with the throttle off aka all the way down. Make sure the throttle is all the way down before you flip the switch over to Landing condition. This is typically your state since you are thermalling (or at least attempting to) before you decide to land.
________________________________________Glider with 4-servo wing, V-tail and variable motor control
1. Setup Launch menu. In the Model menu, select Launch. Select Switch E and set the “On” state to the down position on the screen. Next set values for the Flap surfaces. For a starting value, set both of your Flaps to +5%. This provides just a little flap for launching and thermal circling. On Launch I only use this for the first few seconds of the flight to help keep the glider from stalling as it gains speed. I don’t add elevator here but mix that in using a throttle mix.
Remaining issues to resolve:
How to add Flap to Elevator Mixing? Will it work for both flaps?