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Old Sep 12, 2010, 11:52 AM
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I'm interested as well as I need something for my new Stryker setup as I'll be going a little further than I'm accustomed to with my Tri! I too was waiting for the old version but now I'll hold off for the new one.
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Old Sep 12, 2010, 02:37 PM
YS-X6 Know why it crashes,blog
New Zealand, Auckland
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That 'Handi-finder' looks interesting. Won't work too well for fm kit's device as it's not a constant on transmitter.

Also the fact that it transmits the tones at decreasing power levels already helps with direction finding.

Ready to order new one as well.
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Old Sep 12, 2010, 04:51 PM
Stuart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr_westie View Post
That 'Handi-finder' looks interesting. Won't work too well for fm kit's device as it's not a constant on transmitter.
I would not be so sure.

With the gizzmo I built in LMA mode I switch the RF Carrier off when tones are not being transmitted to conserve power. The handi finder will work off carrier only, and it will work with an intermittent carrier as well.

Handi finder will also give a direction at very close quarters, 10 to 20m.
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Old Sep 12, 2010, 05:20 PM
Stuart
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Well since you asked for suggestions;

Looks like you are using a MCU for programming the RFM42, via SPI I presume.

If you have a MCU in there then I would add the ability to connect to a Channel on the RC RX.

The main battery on a plane often stays connected in a crash and it almost certainly has a capacity that is many times greater than the battery on the beacon, so for a short period at least you could transmit at max power. Use a different set of tones for transmitting on plane battery versus beacon battery.

If you decode the servo pulse, you can switch on the beacon automatically after radio contact is lost. If the RX has a hold function you can check for changes in the pulse indicating no transmitter inputs, and then activate LMA mode.

Once you are decoding servo pulses, you can use the beacon to send a tone to warn the flier if there are glitches in the servo pulses, perhaps suggesting that you are going out of range for control. You could also use the beacon for ground range tests of the RC system. Plug the beacon into an RC channel, put the TX antenna down, and walk away until you hear a glitch warning on the radio you are using to listen to the beacon. Compare recievers in this way to work out which are the most reliable and longest range.
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 03:48 AM
Stuart
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It looks like you are using the RFM42B?

Just looked at the data sheet, it is a very capable device, I really like the addition of a Vref and ADC to allow monitoring of battery status.

One question, are you powering this direct from a single Lipo ?

The RFM42 has a max rating of 3.6v (a somewhat odd choice I think) whilst a freshly charged single cell Lipo is 4.2V.
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 04:54 AM
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Originally Posted by srnet View Post
It looks like you are using the RFM42B?

Just looked at the data sheet, it is a very capable device, I really like the addition of a Vref and ADC to allow monitoring of battery status.

One question, are you powering this direct from a single Lipo ?

The RFM42 has a max rating of 3.6v (a somewhat odd choice I think) whilst a freshly charged single cell Lipo is 4.2V.
I'm sorry about delay, since yesterda was re-installing WnXP and now back in business.
I've done many tests with the modules and found multiple errors in RFM42B datasheet. HopeRF using SiLabs ezRadio chips. So far 3 modules (incl.RFM23B) ran hours while powered by 5v without damage, I'm sure in beacon mode the modules won't get damaged while pulsing max power breefly. The module get hot while transmitting 100% duty and puts out 2x power than specified (small light bulb connected to antenna is shining because of RF power).
Yes, the module has 8bit ADC and temperature sensor built-in but the controler chips I'm using have 4channel 14bit ADC and many more resources, some time ago I flew Stryker with the chip (CY8C24123A) set as flight controller, it was controlling and decoding 2way radio, mixing elevons and outputting 4 PWM same time.

The beacon is monitoring it's own battery and can monitor 5 more voltages but how you gonna wire so meny lines ? I really wanted sub 2gram complete device that has size of fingernail and here it is
later I'll order complex PCB with many connectors but then you have choice of OSDs that already monitor voltage and have alarms.
Even if only 5% of available resources used (RFM42b +cy24) the deice is still lightest and most capable compared to other designs.
Adding functionality right now.
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 09:35 AM
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FmKit,

So if I understand correctly.

1) The new version does not need a LCD

2) User can choose his freq. (4 available)\

3) Time delay and interval user set

To use this beacon, one would plug in sgl lipo at beginning of flight, transmission would begin approx. 45min later if so set. At end of flight unplug lipo.

If plane is lost, use ebay radio, transmission would begin 45min after lipo plugged in.

Series of beeps to find plane, (basically)
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 10:18 AM
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yes, single button does all the config.
4 channels, unless you ask for specific channel defaults are 5 and 6 PMR/FRS
startup delay required if using Thomas/Dragon LRS (even old 10mW beacon was causing FS)
you can cancel or activate delayed startup just hold button down for 3s while the TX powered (if you hold while powering up you'll have PMR/FRS switch)
use single Li-po or plug the transmitter into balancer -have to make special connector to avoid reversed polarity/overvoltage
All 2way radios can receive the signal

in the past 2 years I received good feedback from users of old version beacon
new hardware is much better, real upgrade
all UHF frequencies, 5times more power for the same current drawn, li-po protection, simple config, one version fit american and european users, multiple timers set with few clicks, vario input ... >> all for less cost compared to previous model.

button function:
. short push
_ pause
._. =6s interval
.._.. 12s
..._... 22s
...._.... 44s
....._..... change channel
as you see clicks must repeat
random clicks ignored except while TX is sleeping (delayed start)
then it wakes up
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 10:51 AM
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Thanks so much, for detailed info.
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 12:08 PM
Stuart
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I can certainly see the attraction of the very small and light unit, if its that light there is not much excuse for using one, given the weight of the average photo plane.

At that weight you will have a winner.

For my purposes, I am not that bothered whether it is 2g or 10g, I would sacrifice the extra weight for extra facilities such as I mentioned.

I did mine using PIC 12F675 and in Mikrobasic, lazy I know but it works. Adding the ability to read SPI requires one of the more complex PIC chips, the smallest being 18 pin I think, assuming you require to use the an on board peripheral hardware.
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 12:12 PM
Mums the word.
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Can you have a start up delay of more then 45 mins?
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 12:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by man2000me View Post
Can you have a start up delay of more then 45 mins?
specify any number, there is no limit (1year OK)
I have to calibrate each module (set chip internal capacitors to zero in output frequency) using C compiler, if someone wants specific delay or channels I'll key in custom data while calibrating crystal oscillator.
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 02:32 PM
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Is there anyway to have it monitor servo outputs? Kinda like many LMA's? That way you dont really need a delay, It would just come on after say 5 minutes of inactivity. That would eliminate any chance of it being triggered when the plane is in use, but on the other hand you dont have to wait an hour before it comes on should the plane crash...
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 07:38 PM
How do I change this text?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fmkit View Post
specify any number, there is no limit (1year OK)
Peter, can the delay also be set for less than 45 minutes? I'm currently using the previous version of your beacon (which I love BTW), but minimum 1 hour delay is too long for my needs. I'd prefer half an hour.
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Old Sep 13, 2010, 11:43 PM
Mums the word.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashdec87 View Post
Is there anyway to have it monitor servo outputs? Kinda like many LMA's? That way you dont really need a delay, It would just come on after say 5 minutes of inactivity. That would eliminate any chance of it being triggered when the plane is in use, but on the other hand you dont have to wait an hour before it comes on should the plane crash...

That is a damn good idea...


So can the user change the delay time, or is that set from you?
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