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Old Jan 15, 2013, 05:20 AM
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Fuel plane battery pack

How do you know when to recharge the battery pack for the servos,etc?I it's not a lipo so i assume it has a memory?
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 06:37 AM
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If the pack is NiCad or NiMh then the remaining capacity is determined somewhat by a voltage check while applying a load. A load meter will be needed.

If a 4 cell 4.8 volt it can be flown down to 4.6 v whereas a 5 cell 6v pack down to 5.75v.

It requires applying some thought as one would not start a flight at 4.7 volts with a 400mah battery whereas with an 1100 doing so might be reasonable.

It is prudent to take a load reading before every flight. Doing so has saved many a plane.
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 06:50 AM
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Charge every morning before you fly at first monitor your voltage with a loaded voltmeter after every flight to get an idea of what you use a flight. Then you can monitor your voltage after say the third flight. Don't ever go below 1.1 v a cell
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 07:35 AM
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I usually charge the night before or the morning before flying. Normally at about 400 to 500ma charge rate. When recharging at the field, I'll go as high as 1 amp. In addition to what the others said, I use my ESV (Expanded Scale Voltmeter) to test my batteries before, then after each flight. Over 20 years I've lost 3 planes to battery failure. Believe me, you feel really stupid when that happens.

I cycle test all my flight batteries every spring, except lipo's. I usually find at least one that is less than 80%. That's when I take them out of service and turn it into a bench battery. Others go down to 70% but thats just a personal choice. Its important to setup a procedure and be consistant. Batteries fail, you dont want to loose a plane if you can help it.
Edwin
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 08:15 AM
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Thanks for the replies.As you can see I'm new to glow engines.Been flying battery up til now.Like the idea of a real engine with the noise and smoke.They are fun!
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 08:48 AM
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We all had our day as a beginner. Don't hesitate to ask, if needing info.

Best of luck and enjoyment.
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 09:04 AM
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I'm new too and I already had a battery failure. Luckily I saved the plane. I found a small on board voltmeter read out, led type. I mounted it in the dash and it comes on with the power switch so I can know at a glance what the charge is.
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 09:13 AM
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I use a thing called "Voltwatch". A series of led's that go from green (good) to red (bad). I turn things on, run the sticks around, so that several channels are excersized simultaneously, and if any drop into the red, I know the pack is too low.

Les
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 09:22 AM
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Glad the plane wasn't lost. Any help one can get to monitor a battery is a good thing and it sounds like the device described will work well.

Newer radios often have telemetry, which is the cats meow offering real time condition and sounding a warning if either Tx or Rx batteries fall below a set voltage level.

There is also newer battery technology and some as myself are converting to LiFe though I think the biggest plus for it is for those who have a large hanger as NiCad and NiMh don't seem to like inactivity.
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 01:13 PM
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If your using a DX8 you could use a TM1000 telematry module. I have mine connected to the RX voltage and the pack voltage with an alarm if it gets to low.
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Old Jan 15, 2013, 02:08 PM
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United States, OR, Albany
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rccsofla View Post
Thanks for the replies.As you can see I'm new to glow engines.Been flying battery up til now.Like the idea of a real engine with the noise and smoke.They are fun!
I just converted one of my electrics to a 4 stroke nitro and I love it. Its also my first fuel set up after flying only electrics for a couple of years. Such a great sound, I see many more in my future.
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Old Jan 17, 2013, 07:39 AM
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Latvia, Ventspils pilsēta, Ventspils
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NiCD are banned in various parts of the world incl EU ... so most now use NiMH ....

NiMH can be charged at any state with the standard charger ... or via a Delta Peak detection charger ......... without the problems we used to have with NiCD's where cycling was a duty done regularly.
I charge up my NiMH night before flying - that's the RX and Ignition packs both. Regardless of how much used out of them prior session ... and they are still top-notch a year later ...

Nigel
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 05:12 PM
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can you provide a link to that meter that provides load?
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 05:54 PM
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East Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ryanbe15 View Post
can you provide a link to that meter that provides load?
There are numerous to choose from. I'll link to the one I use.

http://www.experiencerc.com/store/rc...ge-p-7509.html
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 07:50 PM
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I use an older Tower ESV, it switches between 4.8v and 6v on the receiver.

http://www.horizonhobby.com/webapp/w...pe=productgrid
http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...?&I=LXWDZ5&P=7

Edwin
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