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Old Nov 02, 2013, 12:05 AM
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ozmo01's Avatar
USA, MO, Ozark
Joined Nov 2006
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Help!
Bee electric conversion questions

Hi,
Gonna electrify my wind rider bee. I wanna slope it here in the Ozarks. Wind is almost always intermittent.
My 48" Bee has a very light set up currently without motor.
I want to keep it light but add just enough motor to keep me from running up and down the slope. I don't need to reinvent the wheel ....
So anyone done this already? Thanks in advance for any assist
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Old Nov 06, 2013, 04:39 AM
JoethePlumber meet JoetheStack
United States, CA, Pasadena
Joined Apr 2013
81 Posts
I electrified my 48" Bee about a month ago, and it flies great. The kit was called Predator Bee when I built it in 2006 as a sloper. I built it to take some punishment, so I don't think it is ultra-light. I'll post a pic or two.

According to your requirements, I think you could put just about any motor on there. But I recommend minimum 20A ESC, up to 50A if you wanted more power. IMHO on a wing the bigger the prop the more likely it is to break during landing, and also to slice your hand to ribbons in a ground handling accident. That means smaller prop, higher KV motor. I'm using 5x5 prop, and it seems to be the right size. Much bigger & I would have to cut away more of the elevons. Motor output should be somewhere between 150W & 500W, according to your preference, 2500-3000KV. If you wanted max thrust, which you do not, a 4S battery is desireable, otherwise 3S. For the battery I suppose you could go as small as 850mAh. I run a 2200 3S, but I'm flying at an open field now, not a slope.

IMHO if you are trying to keep it light then you want to avoid mounting chunks of lead on the nose at the end. Think judicious battery placement with an eye to the CG.
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Old Nov 06, 2013, 05:02 PM
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USA, MO, Ozark
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Thanks

Thanks Joe,
You info is just what I was looking for. appreciate it very much!

I have some 2, 3 & 4 cell packs from 850 up to 1300. Have to order a motor & ESC.
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Old Nov 07, 2013, 02:45 PM
JoethePlumber meet JoetheStack
United States, CA, Pasadena
Joined Apr 2013
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I put the stuff on top because I didn't feel like hogging out a bunch more of an already finished wing.
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Old Nov 07, 2013, 03:30 PM
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USA, MO, Ozark
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nice pics Thanks
I am thinking of heating up a plastic bat to form to the airfoil to make a pod for all my stuff. Then it can be a convertible.
The really cheep dollar store bats can be heated with a covering hot air gun.
You just use the wife's oven mitts and go for it, mount the motor on the end and trim off what sticks out in front. It could be molded over the nose if desired. The stuff is easy to form.
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Last edited by ozmo01; Nov 07, 2013 at 03:37 PM.
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Old Nov 07, 2013, 11:25 PM
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USA, MO, Ozark
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3500 kv

oh boy I found a little 3500 kv motor. I think it was for a prop jet like a Stryker.
Pays to check the old motor stash more closely!
Started molding a bat, it lets the prop run just aft of the elevons and ends at the LE with wrap around tab to cover the nose and bottom of the glider, It will allow it to be a convertable
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Old Nov 08, 2013, 03:49 AM
JoethePlumber meet JoetheStack
United States, CA, Pasadena
Joined Apr 2013
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Excellent! That's a great idea, molding the bat. I had not thought of anything like that. Convertible is cool too! Windrider was selling a power pod at one point I think. Will the bat-based pod fuselage be stiff enough to hold the motor securely? You are probably aware that the thrust angle can be important. How will you secure the pod to the wing, just lash it down with zip-ties, or something more elegant? Sounds fun, post pics.

Once I made a fuselage protector, more like a glider nose condom (to protect it when penetrating the earth), by heat-shrinking a PTFE water bottle. But I had to made a wood replica of the nose to do it, because of the heat involved.

I flew a few electrified aircraft at one of my favorite slope sites several weeks ago. I worry about getting spoiled by having motors, but it was kind of nice to have them. Obviously one can go sloping in more marginal conditions if you have a motor, which would have been handy many times in the past. But I was also able to explore a lot more of the airspace around the hill, go places I wouldn't with gliders. I'm sure I could get in trouble too, if left alone.

I'll be waiting to see if you can convert back and forth while maintaining the CG location. On mine there I was able to remove an ounce of lead from the nose by moving the battery forward and placing the ESC right up front on top. But there is still an ounce left. Since I used the existing chambers for the battery, it runs fore and aft. If I had installed the battery cross-ways, that might have moved the battery weight forward from where it is now, but I'm not so sure the servos wouldn't be in the way.

Your avatar looks suspiciously like a Rogallo!
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Last edited by Joe the Stack; Nov 08, 2013 at 03:53 AM. Reason: rogallo
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Old Nov 08, 2013, 04:09 PM
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USA, MO, Ozark
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Ragollo wing built in the early 70s. actually flew it here in the mid west
Will try to have the CG of the pod equal to the CG of the wing so little changes to be made when switching. will secure with a light weight bungie under the wing. Pod on top. Thrust changes will be done by reheating the bat motor area.
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Last edited by ozmo01; Nov 10, 2013 at 08:56 PM. Reason: pour spelin
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