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Old Oct 09, 2012, 10:45 PM
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USA, TX, Fort Worth
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What's the point of the Align 2 in 1 regulator?

I bought a Trex 600n a couple months ago and have really enjoyed flying it. The heli was used and came with the Align regulator. It's working fine but I'm curious- why would someone set up a heli with this when a 2 cell LiFe and remote glow connector would be cheaper and simpler? Is there something I'm missing in the value of the 2 cell lipo regulated down to run the servos?
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Old Oct 10, 2012, 06:14 AM
Complete RC Idiot Savant
The Netherlands
Joined Nov 2009
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Don't have one myself, but worked with it, when adjusting helicopters for students....

Have cursed the thing always, as it is only glowing for 10 seconds than need to restart the glow driver. For me, a remote glow connection is way, way more convenient.
The glow driver is just some silly gadget in my opinion, it works pretty OK in a pod&boom where access is OK, but in a scaler it is a nightmare: it pushes you to rush your starting procedure, which is never a good thing....

The voltage regulator in itself, I think it's a good thing, as you will have 6V until the battery is down, and if rated properly, it really reduces possibility for brown-out.

But that is just my 2 cents,

Brgds, Bert
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Old Oct 10, 2012, 10:18 AM
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Thanks for the insight Brutus. The 10 second time limit is a little annoying, but I've learned to get my starter all set before hitting the button. Most of the time it starts before the glow goes out. So you're saying that this regulator with a lipo is a more reliable current supply than say an LiFe without a regulator? Or is it simply that you get consistent voltage all the way through the battery's discharge?
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Old Oct 10, 2012, 01:51 PM
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The Netherlands
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Just its consistency, plus the fact that 2S delivers too much voltage for most RRX and servos....
Theoretically speaking, you cannot improve reliability by adding something that can (theoretically) fail, unless that added thing is absolutely necessary.

In case of normal 6V RX and servos, a regulator is absolutely necessary, since LiFe too has a fully charged voltage of around 8V.
It just doesn't need to be a two-way with built in glow driver.... And that is the part I cursed....

Brgds, Bert
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Old Oct 10, 2012, 01:56 PM
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Actually, a fully charged LiFe is 7.2v with a little load on it. That's really close to what a 5 cell NiCd puts out. I use an unregulated LiFe on two of my planes and have measured the voltage at the receiver to verify that. It looks to me like the heli community got used to using these when Lipo was the only option for a high current application and has just continued with them even though LiFe is now an option. I understand that many tail servos are voltage sensitive, but it seems that the optimal setup today would be a big LiFe with a 5v regulator for the tail servo and a remote glow driver. For those who want onboard glow, there are plenty of units that will operate from the transmitter, which actually makes the task even easier than using the 2 in 1.
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Old Oct 11, 2012, 03:46 PM
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Servo's and gyro's have been known to fail on a fully charged 5 cell NiCd or NiMH battery.

Up to you is you want to take that risk.... I don't!

Brgds, Bert
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Old Oct 11, 2012, 04:23 PM
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Ok, so that's what I was wondering. With planes if you buy 6v servos they are designed for the voltage or a NiCd hot off the charger, so using an LiFe is not a problem. So I suppose at least with some products if it says 6 volts it really means 6 volts and no more? I do understand my Futaba tail servo is strictly 5v or less, and I have the regulator for that. I just didn't realize that some heli cyclic servos couldn't go over 6v if that's what they were rated for.
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Old Oct 11, 2012, 05:45 PM
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The Netherlands
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Usually there is no difference in interpretation of specs for Heli or plane servos and gear. Six Volt is six Volt....

Almost all conventional RC stuff is designed for "4.8-6V", meaning it can handle a full pack 4 cell NiXX, or four standard 1.5V batteries.

It should handle a "hot from the charger" 4 cell pack, and most survive a 5 cell pack when it is charged and left to rest for say 30 minutes, but it is not a guarantee. I have flown a few years 5 cell NiXX, and had one gyro quit on me in flight, and two Hitec servo's new out of the box (rated 4.8~6V) fail.

Stopped using 5 Cell, because the extra speed and torque marginal, therefore futile: buy one size bigger and you have even more speed and/or torque, without the risk....

Brgds, Bert
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