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Old Feb 11, 2013, 12:15 AM
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Auto throttle?

Has there ever been an product where you can flip a switch and enable a auto throttle. for example: Im flying my rc heli using fpv and i want to hover at a stable altitude so i flip a switch and the throttle stays at a constant preset throttle hold while holding a balanced pitch and yaw allowing a stable hover kinda like an auto pilot for hover has this been invented yet? iv researched every where but could not find any thing
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 01:50 AM
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It's called auto stabilization how deep you want to go. I'm surprised you couldn't find any thing in a search.there's threads here on the groups.
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 01:50 AM
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Google "Flymentor".

I do wonder tho if you can use a multirotor board on a helicopter and make it use GPS.
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 08:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by countrybo89 View Post
Has there ever been an product where you can flip a switch and enable a auto throttle. for example: Im flying my rc heli using fpv and i want to hover at a stable altitude so i flip a switch and the throttle stays at a constant preset throttle hold while holding a balanced pitch and yaw allowing a stable hover kinda like an auto pilot for hover has this been invented yet? iv researched every where but could not find any thing
You are talking about two different things that must be combined in order to get what you are asking for. There are a few units out there that can auto level a heli, but those have no control over altitude or locking pitch at one location. The pilot still must maintain control of where the heli is positioned and altitude. These are considered auto stabilization units, and some examples would be the Flymentor, Skookum 720, Naza H, MSH Brain(Ikon), Helicommand HC3X.

Locking the heli at a specific altitude or in one place requires GPS and a barometer in order for the heli to know its altitude. This technology is just now starting to be released for RC helis and the current units that can do this are the Naza H with GPS module, Skookum 720 with GPS module, Align APS system.

Cost for the GPS technology runs between $450 to about $1000 and can go upwards of $10,000 or more for professional grade setups with waypoints and full autonomous autopilot.
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 11:13 AM
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lol wow that alot of money to spend on a rc heli well at least we know the tecnology is out there and with a few years its price and size my get smaller
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 08:53 PM
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Does it have to be that much? We already have flight control boards that can do all that for under a hundred dollars. Couldn't you just put one of those on a helicopter?
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Old Feb 12, 2013, 09:38 AM
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Does it have to be that much? We already have flight control boards that can do all that for under a hundred dollars. Couldn't you just put one of those on a helicopter?
Its like anything else and the price will come down with time. Just think of how cheap FBL systems are today compared to just a few years ago when the technology was new. The initial cost of development means any new product or feature will demand a high price for a while.

You must also consider the differences in features and what we are expecting from them. The low cost systems you are talking about have been used on quads for a while now. Quads are stable and always upright. Most are using these GPS features for filming platforms where all the pilot does is fly slowly to a particular location and lock it there.

Heli pilots on the other hand, are looking to use this technology as a training or bail out aid when things go wrong. The SK720 GPS for example, has a hard deck feature that will rescue the heli if it gets too close to the ground or even fly it back home if you lose oreintation. This means the GPS must be able to work in any position and keep its lock and keep track of altitude while being thrashed around. The cheaper alternatives you are speaking of cannot do this and aren't designed to work as a bail out. The Naza H for example is designed as a FBL controller with GPS for about $450, but in order to switch into GPS mode you just come to a complete stop, center the sticks and then switch into GPS. This is useless as a bail out feature, but great for an APS setup, so it really depends on what you are needing the technology to do for you.

On top of this, keep in mind that the unit must also be able to work in a wide variety of geographic locations. Magnetic deviation is different all around the world, so these devices must be able to behave properly in all sorts of different temp and geographic conditions. Its a very complicated endeavor, especially using these tools on a heli flying very fast 3D moves. Currently only the Skookum is designed for this and its about $450 for the FBL controller and another $495 for the GPS. There are cheaper alternatives like the Naza, but they are designed for very different things.

Its easy to think that GPS funtionality is all the same form one system to the next, but its much more complicated than that when you start to think about what we are asking the unit to do for us. Given time the technology will get cheaper and the Chinese ripoff clones will start to appear.
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Old Feb 12, 2013, 10:28 AM
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Not all helicopter flyers fly their helicopter upside down and you don't need GPS to level out. Altitude is determined by a barometer, not GPS, which works regardless of orientation. Accelerometers and Gyros do have an autolevel already in use on Walkera helicopters. Magnetic deviation can be compensated in software, if the heli moves north, but the GPS shows that it moved 10 degrees northeast, then it can adjust its magnetic declination, there's no special hardware for that. Is there any actual reason why an FCB can't level out a helicopter and travel between waypoints by itself?

It has magnetometers, accelerometers and gyroscopes that it can use to orient itself. A barometer for determining altitude relative to the start point. And a GPS to determine its absolute position. Everything else is software. The only issue i can think of is if the CPU is fast enough to do all the mixing between the servos to react to the sensor inputs. So far, not only are they fast enough to control quads, they're fast enough to control gimbals as well, so that's two sets of servo mixing (or throttle mixing in the case of the quad motors).
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Old Feb 12, 2013, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Hajile View Post
Not all helicopter flyers fly their helicopter upside down and you don't need GPS to level out. Altitude is determined by a barometer, not GPS, which works regardless of orientation. Accelerometers and Gyros do have an autolevel already in use on Walkera helicopters. Magnetic deviation can be compensated in software, if the heli moves north, but the GPS shows that it moved 10 degrees northeast, then it can adjust its magnetic declination, there's no special hardware for that. Is there any actual reason why an FCB can't level out a helicopter and travel between waypoints by itself?

It has magnetometers, accelerometers and gyroscopes that it can use to orient itself. A barometer for determining altitude relative to the start point. And a GPS to determine its absolute position. Everything else is software. The only issue i can think of is if the CPU is fast enough to do all the mixing between the servos to react to the sensor inputs. So far, not only are they fast enough to control quads, they're fast enough to control gimbals as well, so that's two sets of servo mixing (or throttle mixing in the case of the quad motors).
Correct, but there is supply and demand. These are niche market items a the moment, and you can't just go buy one from Hobby King. Some of the few suppliers are small business with only a few employees, so there is a large initial investment on their work they must recover before the price comes down. Others have been doing it commercially for some time and can charge less for similar components.

Bottom line is many are addicted to cheap crap and expect that everything should be almost free. RCG in particular has been sliding into a cheap clone and cheap parts site (at least the heli forums) for some time now, so anything over $100 is considered outrageous. Commercial waypoint GPS systems are $10,000-$20,000 so $450-$1000 is nothing compared to what the big boys are using. Anyone can argue that something should or shouldn't cost but "X" amount, but the cost is what it is at the moment unless someone has the skills to build something themselves.

The cost of an item is never based only on the sum of its parts. We want it, very few make it, so we pay what they ask for the moment, or do without it until there are other choices.
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Old Feb 12, 2013, 12:01 PM
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well you see what im talking about is not necessarily a guidance system or fbw. ( fly by wire) i mean more of a stabilization and altitude hold just to hold a stable hover so you can keep your eyes on a spot on the ground using a onboard camera. i mean really thinking about it in theory all you would think you would need is mercury tubes hooked to a type of control board for balance and the basic parts of a lazer distance reader kinda like what you use for hunting. im just speaking in theory. it shouldnt be all that hard to make something like this useing inexpensive part so the products being so high price is not exacly necssary. (not saying that your wrong by no means) im just saying maybe there just putting to much into it driving the price a little high
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 04:03 AM
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I would like one also. My searches found this product. It does what I really want, to be able to set a desired altitude.
http://www.leteckafotografie.com/althold/althold.htm
I think for the cost it is more practical to go with a full GPS board. This one is one of the cheaper out there.
http://store.diydrones.com/APM_2_5_A...t-telem915.htm
I looked at laser modules for another project. Looks like its fairly hard to do without going near $500. I had thought of using ground based lasers with just the sensor in the helicopter. That would take some serious time for me to figure out.
Many projects use sonic rangefinders. They seam limited to fairly low altitudes.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 08:08 PM
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now that first video shows what im talking about a module that can control altitude while also balancing the pitch and yaw of the heli so you can fix your helis fpv cams on a spot on the ground with out having to constantly having to manually adjust it and be able to use that time to look threw the goggles and watch things on the ground
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 11:02 PM
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The product in the video only does altitude. The pitch, and yaw are the easy part. There are many stabilization products on the market. One of mine has an AP2000i, it has an infared module to self level. Another has the SK720 flybarless gyro. Both are very good at self leveling.
The helicopter I want it for is fairly expensive, so wanting something proven to be reliable.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 11:06 PM
RC Heli Junky
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same here the first link doesnt tell me where to buy the alt hold where would you find that product and how do you buy it
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 03:34 AM
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You have to contact him from that web site. Here is the Google translation of the contact page. http://translate.google.com/translat...ed=0CDEQ7gEwAA
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