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Old Jun 01, 2014, 04:32 PM
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metalwizard's Avatar
United States, UT, Hurricane
Joined Aug 2012
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Whoops!
I feel like an idiot

So this weekend was our clubs 3 day float fly.. Been looking forward to it for a while.

I didnt have a REAL float plane in the past and wasn't sure how much I would like it so I decided to go cheap as a first real float plane..

I purchased a Value hobbies Neptune 60
http://www.valuehobby.com/airplanes/...dy-to-fly.html
Not to get into that but Yes you get what you pay for... but that was expected.. so two weeks of Graduations and trips all over the country and trying to build a plane last minuet I get it done and head to the float fly (yeah the build... thats really another story)

I am after a bunch of fixes pretty happy with this plane its big it looks nice its cheap, even found a deal here on a use OS 55 AX for it and most the other parts I had in my stockpile so I only have a couple hundred into this bird! and its ready to fly..

Saturday morning the air is beautiful so I fire the OS 55 for the first time tune the high speed needle and drop it in the water.. get on the throttle she runs good and LIFTOFF woo hoo I'm a float flier!

a few laps around get the trim all set (which was WAY OUT but I attribute that to the cheap airframe) and things are going nice.. Im two mistakes hig for the maiden.. a few laps around the lake and i'm having fun..

One of the memebers goes.. how well does she glide... good question, so I back off the throttle to idle and get it into a nice glide "PRETTY GOOD" I bump the throttle back up BAM DEADSTICK..

No biggie call it out plenty of room finish a nice lap get it into the wind and bring it in for a nice soft touchdown on the lake.... right in the middle LOL so I take a canoe trip out to retrieve it..

Second flight I adjust the high speed again all is good I lean out the low end needle about 1/8 to 1/4 turn snap throttle a few times all is ok... second flight about the same results.. ARRRGH another deadstick and a trip in the canoe..

again though nice landing..

now the wind kicks up too bad to fly, so I get one of the club pros to help me out while were are grounded..

we spend about an hour messing with it... pull the carb clean it out.. re set needles change the prop.. and WOW it REALLY runs good.. im stoked!

sunday morning all is clam lets do this I'm so excited.. drop it in the lake get it moving pull back on the stick... take a bit but BAM im in the air again.

start my turn at the end of the lake... and it stilll keep climbing.. WHAT THE HECK..

I give it full stick... nothing.. I try everything NADDA.. no control FULL THROTTLE and climbing into a loop its upside down headed right back at us now.. I get a little aileron out of it it goes into a rolling dive straight down.. NO MORE CONTROL...

I watch in horror as it goes full throttle straight down... over the reeds at the end of the lake I cant see it anymore... I turn on my transmitter KNOWING theres no saving it now.. alls thats left to do now is listen for the CRUNCH... and its REALLLY LOUD echoing in the canyon and over the lake..

Time to take that long drive of shame to pick up the wreckage..

I get to the other side of the lake.. the cows are admiring my newly redesigned airplane.. to my surprise its actually not to bad the fuse is smashed right to the wing.. the pod is torn off.. props busted but nothing else is damaged.. so shes actually fixable with a new Fuse.. I feel a little better.. and I am AMAZED as hard as it sounded and as hard and as rocky as the ground is I expected toothpicks

so time for the post mortem..

First thing I do remove the wing.. all is good

now I start untangling the mess thats up in the front of the fuse.. in the middle of the mess my 1600 LIPO pack and BEC.. something goes off in my head.. DUH I BET ITS DEAD.. heck I had it on for an hour messing with the motor and never though to check it..

sure enough volt meter reads 5.8 volts on a 3 cell lipo... DOH

well I know why she augered in now... and I tell you what I learned a lesson I am SURE we all will learn at some point CHECK YOUR RECEIVER PACKS.. it just might save you the humility I went through this morning!
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Last edited by metalwizard; Jun 01, 2014 at 04:38 PM.
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Old Jun 02, 2014, 02:03 PM
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dedStik's Avatar
United States, VA, Virginia Beach
Joined Feb 2012
5,407 Posts
I have a Trainer .40 that's converted to electric, I removed the BEC and opted for a 1500 mAh nimh rx pack. I charge it before the first flight at the field and every other flight thereafter while at the field.
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Old Jun 02, 2014, 04:15 PM
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metalwizard's Avatar
United States, UT, Hurricane
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dedStik View Post
I have a Trainer .40 that's converted to electric, I removed the BEC and opted for a 1500 mAh nimh rx pack. I charge it before the first flight at the field and every other flight thereafter while at the field.

WOW I have a 1600 3 cell lipo in my Space Walker. I get ten flights out of it before I feel I need to charge it..

but 10 flights... 5 or 6 mins each is 1 hour..

I had 2 flight s (with some tinkering in between) plus at LEAsT an hour before the last flight...

so I guess I am pushing my spacewalker to the limit.. although I do have a lead on the outside so I can test it... and I do often...
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Old Jun 03, 2014, 12:12 PM
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seeingeyegod's Avatar
United States, OR, Portland
Joined Jan 2008
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Wait, what do you need a BEC for in a nitro plane? All you have is one battery powering the radio right? Do you have it plugged into a BEC for voltage regulation or because thats how your switch harness is wired? Seems like an extra point of failure/more current draw..
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Old Jun 03, 2014, 05:27 PM
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United States, UT, Hurricane
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seeingeyegod View Post
Wait, what do you need a BEC for in a nitro plane? All you have is one battery powering the radio right? Do you have it plugged into a BEC for voltage regulation or because thats how your switch harness is wired? Seems like an extra point of failure/more current draw..
I did not have a life battery at the time of the flight. I was using a lipo 3cell. So the bec was to regulate the voltage to 6.6 volts... Like the servos require!
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Old Jun 06, 2014, 11:15 AM
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United States, GA, Cartersville
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I don't fly electric (yet,) but I think there is a lot to be said about the redundancy that is offered by separate batteries for the motor and radio gear. A guy at our club had an electric jet that "flamed out". After the landing, he found that the solder joint on one of his LiPo battery wires had come loose. He was able to land safely, due to the fact that his receiver and servos were powered by a separate battery. People may complain about the extra weight and hassle of charging two batteries, but these issues may seem moot once someone looses an aircraft.
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Old Jun 06, 2014, 11:34 AM
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United States, OR, Portland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N410DC View Post
I don't fly electric (yet,) but I think there is a lot to be said about the redundancy that is offered by separate batteries for the motor and radio gear. A guy at our club had an electric jet that "flamed out". After the landing, he found that the solder joint on one of his LiPo battery wires had come loose. He was able to land safely, due to the fact that his receiver and servos were powered by a separate battery. People may complain about the extra weight and hassle of charging two batteries, but these issues may seem moot once someone looses an aircraft.
Yeah most people with bigger electrics do use a separate (or redundant separate) rx batteries. I had the same thing happen on one of my planes once, bad solder joint on the lipo, it was actually kind of cool/lucky... the plane lost all power and control but just did a slow circle back to the ground and landed itself (foamie). The nice thing about BEC's though, and even the ones built into ESC's, is that sometimes the ESC part can burn out in flight but you are still left with control over your flight surfaces, just no motor power, so you at least can do a dead stick landing.
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Old Jun 06, 2014, 01:45 PM
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United States, UT, Hurricane
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I use dual batteries on anything gas.. one for electronics one for reciever..

I have never done that on Electrics.. but I do have a couple that have lots of servos or high draws and for those I get rid of the BEC in the ESC (cut the red wire) and use a separate BEC..

But this one was my own dumb...... I just didnt check the charge... you know what happens when you assume.. you crash!
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Old Jun 23, 2014, 02:30 PM
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NitroRoo's Avatar
United States, NC, Charlotte
Joined Apr 2014
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I lost my first trainer the exact same way. Spent an hour or two adjusting the pushrods, thrust angle, etc. Didn't realize I had run down the RX battery so much. Wanted to test out my adjustments. They were great for about 5 minutes... then I got to watch my plane fly itself in lazy left circles all by itself. I had nothing, and watch helplessly as my plane flew itself down into the ground and exploded. At least we both got to recover our equipment. It could have easily flown away never to be seen again. Anyway - expensive lesson, but one I won't forget.
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Old Jun 23, 2014, 03:43 PM
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United States, UT, Hurricane
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Oh that had to suck watching it circle and you can't do anything about it


I just ordered some v
Led voltage indicators to mount were the can be seen from outside the plane!
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Old Jun 25, 2014, 12:30 AM
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I guess I was wise to put a honkin' 5 cell, 6 volt sub-c nicad pack in my Pete n Poke. Its only 1300mah but seems to last forever. And the nose weight was needed so it was a win win. I've left it on for hours and still showed green on my volt watch.
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