gyro stabilized wing and plank experiment
Here is a little video of a flying wing which is intentionally tail heavy, but is still pitch stable due to gyro stabilization. By making the wing tail heavy, I'm hoping for easy tumbling when I want it and easy regular flying too.
I'm using a Lemon brand stabilized Rx. It is light weight, and relatively inexpensive. It is designed to work with elevons or Vtail or conventional planes. For elevons, you don't mix in the radio, rather the mixing is done in the Rx itself. There is a separate pot (potentiometer) for tuning the gyros on each axis. I only used the pitch stabilization. to tune the pitch gyro I started at the minimum setting and kept increasing until the wing porpoised at high speed and then back it down slightly.
I'm hoping to test this at the slope this weekend to see if the aft cg will let me tumble easily.
If it works as hoped this should also work on almost any light weight wing or plank glider.
I'm about half way through the testing on both a wing and a plank with this gyro. So far I've flown both with extreme aft cg's. Amazing how well the gyro works especially at speed!
Here are my observations so far with very aft cg's:
1) Stability is very good when flying fast; no effect on top speed.
2) Control response is pretty normal if the speed is kept up.
3) If you slow down too much, there is not enough air going pass the elevons for them to control the pitch and the gliders will pitch up, stall and then recover. This effect was worse on the plank then on the wing even though the wing had a more extreme aft cg.
4) As a consequence of 3) pitch is not self correcting when flying slow so it is a lot of work to fly slow.
With the plank, I could easily see when I was slowing down too much because the elevons would start to lower on their own, indicating it was time to push the nose down a bit and speed up.
Because of the pitch up at low speed the gliders were not that much fun to fly with the very aft cg.
Next I plan to try both the wing and the plank with neutral or slightly aft cg's and see how they fly with the gyro assistance.
I did fly one of my wings today without a gyro and was able to tumble very nicely... and it was flyable. I think there is room for more tuning to further enhance both the tumbling and the flying.
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