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Old Jul 14, 2003, 09:34 PM
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SF Bay Area, Ca
Joined Dec 2001
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Graupner Speed 480 Race Break-In & Other Newbie Q's!

Well I posted this in the 'Training' forum, thinking that it would be the best place for newbie type questions, but obvioulsy it isn't, as I have had virtually no response. So I think I will stick to the Jets forum and tap all of the extensive knowledge that I know exists in here.

I am new to 'E' flight, but not new to RC as I have been flying glow planes for about three years now. I have always wanted to get into jets but did not want to spend the money required for Glow Ducted Fans or Turbines. So I have decided to give electric jets a go.

I am not totally new to the theory of electrics, as I was into electronics when I was younger, so know my way around a soldering iron and understand what Volts, Amps, Watts, Ohms etc. are and how they relate to each other.

Right now I have purchased an Alpha Jet EDF profile jet and all of the Hobby-Lobby recommended accessories.

So I have a Graupner 'Speed 480 Race' motor and want to know whether I should do any break-in for this motor? I have read the FAQ and see where it described break-in, but the instructions that came with the motor say no break-in is necessary. So what gives? Break-in or not? I want the best possible performance out of this thing!

Also I bought the recommended 10 Cell CP-1300 SCR Nicad Pack and it dosn't have any conectors on the leads. Do all batteries come without connectors?

I purchased a 'banana plug to Speed 400 connector' charge lead, so I can charge the pack with my Super Turbo charger, so I am guessing I should buy two sets of Speed 400 connectors to solder to the battery and the ESC leads. Is this right?

I see the ESC I purchased and which was recommended, the Jeti 18 Microprocessor ESC is rated for up to 18 Amps, I also see from my research that the Speed 400 connectors are rated to 20 Amps, so I am guessing this is the way to go. Correct?

Lastly I have decided to solder the leads on motor side of the ESC directly to the motor. Is there anything I should watch out for when doing this? When I first looked at the back of the motor it was hard to see where I should solder the leads to. But I think I have it now and can definitely see the +ve and -ve signs and I can also see where the capacitors are soldered to the motor. So I am going to solder the ESC leads direct to the same place where the capacitors are soldered, taking into consideration the polarity. Is this right?

Is there anything else I should look out for?

Sorry this has beocme so long, but I want to get this thing in the air by next weekend. Thanks.
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Old Jul 14, 2003, 11:01 PM
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Los Alamos, NM, USofA
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Re: Graupner Speed 480 Race Break-In & Other Newbie Q's!

Quote:
Originally posted by maverick So I think I will stick to the Jets forum and tap all of the extensive knowledge that I know exists in here.
Hmmm, for whatever that's worth.
Quote:
I have always wanted to get into jets but did not want to spend the money required for Glow Ducted Fans or Turbines. So I have decided to give electric jets a go.
Performance costs money no matter which one you choose. Like the old saying, "How fast do you want to go? How much money do you want to spend?"
Quote:
So I have a Graupner 'Speed 480 Race' motor and want to know whether I should do any break-in for this motor? I have read the FAQ and see where it described break-in, but the instructions that came with the motor say no break-in is necessary. So what gives? Break-in or not? I want the best possible performance out of this thing!
Usually, it's best to follow the manufacturer's recommendation. You break in brushed motors to fully seat the brushes. The SP480R's brushes are mostly seated anyway, hence the requirement for a minimal break-in.
Quote:
Also I bought the recommended 10 Cell CP-1300 SCR Nicad Pack and it dosn't have any conectors on the leads. Do all batteries come without connectors?
Which fan unit did you buy? I thought 8 was the maximum recommended cell count for that motor. Did HL recommend this?

Depends who you bought the battery pack from. Some do, some don't, and some ask you what kind of connector you want (if any). Most flyers have personal preferences as to what type of connector to use and why.
Quote:
I purchased a 'banana plug to Speed 400 connector' charge lead, so I can charge the pack with my Super Turbo charger, so I am guessing I should buy two sets of Speed 400 connectors to solder to the battery and the ESC leads. Is this right?
I'm not sure what you're referring to here. You don't want to hard wire the battery or the charger, so buy as many connectors as necessary to be able to remove the battery for charging and solder the rest.
Quote:
I see the ESC I purchased and which was recommended, the Jeti 18 Microprocessor ESC is rated for up to 18 Amps, I also see from my research that the Speed 400 connectors are rated to 20 Amps, so I am guessing this is the way to go. Correct?
For a lower power set up, yes. Higher power? No. I like to give myself a comfortable margin so that the equipment and wiring is rated higher than the system I'm putting it in is. In this case you should be okay. An Astro Flight Super Whattmeter is a good investment to keep the guessing to a minimum.
Quote:
Lastly I have decided to solder the leads on motor side of the ESC directly to the motor. Is there anything I should watch out for when doing this? When I first looked at the back of the motor it was hard to see where I should solder the leads to. But I think I have it now and can definitely see the +ve and -ve signs and I can also see where the capacitors are soldered to the motor. So I am going to solder the ESC leads direct to the same place where the capacitors are soldered, taking into consideration the polarity. Is this right?
Try not to drop solder into the motor (but you already knew that, right? ). Just follow each manufacturer's recommended wiring scheme and you should be okay.
Quote:
Is there anything else I should look out for?
Be careful! You'll need to watch out that you don't get hooked and start spending some serious money!

Seriously, I would do a careful range check; both power off and power on. If there's any jitters, try to find the cause before flying the model.

Generally, try to keep the radio system as far from the power system as practical. Don't go hog-wild, but sometimes a jitter can be caused or cured by the routing of the wires.

Expect moderately short motor runs (4-6 minutes). Find out how long your run it before the first flight and set a timer. Jets don't usually glide too good (or far-- Most will glide as far as your car keys!).

Some do and some don't recommend ESCs with BEC. I'm a "don't." I agree with Dr. Jet when he says, "BECs usually turn into PECs (Plane Eliminator Circuits )." You'll have to do what your insides tells you to do.
Quote:
Sorry this has beocme so long, but I want to get this thing in the air by next weekend. Thanks.
You're welcome and good luck! And remember, don't get in a hurry. If it doesn't fly next weekend, there's always another day. It's easier to fix a minor problem and bring it back, than to have to repair a crashed model and fix the problem that caused it!

Daren
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Old Jul 14, 2003, 11:21 PM
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SF Bay Area, Ca
Joined Dec 2001
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Re: Re: Graupner Speed 480 Race Break-In & Other Newbie Q's!

Quote:
Originally posted by Daren
How much money do you want to spend?
Well when you consider a starter turbine setup is about USD$4k and a decent glow ducted fan setup about USD$2k, I am thinking if I can get good performance from a USD$1k investment I will be happy! Am I in the ball park?

Quote:
You break in brushed motors to fully seat the brushes. The SP480R's brushes are mostly seated anyway, hence the requirement for a minimal break-in.
OK. I understand the theory of the brushes seated on the commutator and with the flat bottom of the brushes and the curved surface of the commutator there needs to be some break-in to allow a proper fit. How much, if any break-in is already done on a new motor?

Quote:
Which fan unit did you buy?
Vasafan 65/1G.

Quote:
I thought 8 was the maximum recommended cell count for that motor. Did HL recommend this?
The 10-cell pack is as sold by Hobby-Lobby. I know this is a 7.2V motor and 10 cells will give me a nomnial 12V so I am guessing the life of the motor won't be too long! Right?

Quote:
I'm not sure what you're referring to here. You don't want to hard wire the battery or the charger, so buy as many connectors as necessary to be able to remove the battery for charging and solder the rest.
What I mean is I have a set of leads that have banana plugs on one end (Super Turbo) and Speed 400 connectors on the other end. I am assuming I should solder Speed 400 connectors to both the battery leads and ESC leads. This way I can disconnect the battery and plug it into the charger. Nothing will be hard wired except for the ESC to motor leads.

Quote:
Astro Flight Super Whattmeter is a good investment to keep the guessing to a minimum.
Well I already have an expensive Fluke Multi-Meter so I guess it will suffice. But I will check this unit anyway to see if it does anything my Fluke doesn't.

Quote:
Try not to drop solder into the motor (but you already knew that, right? ).
Hehe! Yeah I guess a drop of solder inside the motor wouldn't be real good!

Quote:
Seriously, I would do a careful range check; both power off and power on. If there's any jitters, try to find the cause before flying the model.
Yeas, this is a standard practice, even with 'glow' planes. Nothing strange here, except that there will probably be more chance for radio interference due to the extra electrics.

Thanks for the tips. Good stuff to get me going.
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Old Jul 14, 2003, 11:25 PM
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Re: Re: Re: Graupner Speed 480 Race Break-In & Other Newbie Q's!

Quote:
Originally posted by maverick
Well I already have an expensive Fluke Multi-Meter so I guess it will suffice. But I will check this unit anyway to see if it does anything my Fluke doesn't.
I just pulled out my Fluke multi-meter and see it only measures up to 2A which I know will not be enough. It does measure up to 1000V DC though....Hehe!

That Astro Flight Super Whattmeter does look good. Seems to have decent specs which should cover pretty much all of the intended uses.

Anybody else use one of these?
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Old Jul 15, 2003, 02:58 AM
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Whattmeter is a "must". Dont get the Super one unless you intend to spend your whole Eflight carreer on low amp/power setups. The "Super Whattmeter" is for low power checking, regular Whattmeter for "all".

a $1k EDF will give you good power, though some single unit EDF's can approach $1,5k.

10cells on the s480BB isnt a problem I think because the Vasa fan has a light load. Say the motor is good for 150W, having 10cells resulting in a 15A draw or 8cell giving 20A isnt much different. Its the total power that in most cases dictate motorlife.

As with most entry level gear you'll outgrow it quickly if you find yourself enjoying EDF's. The AlphaJet however will easily house higher powersetups when you feel the need to upgrade.

Break-in, run for a while on 3V with no prop/fan in the intended direction.

Standarize on your connectors/plugs, use gold coated ones.

Good luck!
Haldor
www.halair.com
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Old Jul 15, 2003, 07:52 AM
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Los Alamos, NM, USofA
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Quote:
Originally posted by Haldor
Whattmeter is a "must". Dont get the Super one unless you intend to spend your whole Eflight carreer on low amp/power setups. The "Super Whattmeter" is for low power checking, regular Whattmeter for "all".
Huh?

Respectfully, I submit this from Astro's website:

"Super Whattmeter
Designed for speed 400 models to quarter scale. Reads battery current from 100 ma to 75 amps, voltage from 4 volts to 80 volts, power up to 5000 watts, Milli amp hours up to 9000 mahr."

They may have changed this since your last visit. I believe you're referring to the Mircometer:

"Designed for indoor models and small park flyers. Reads battery current from 10 ma to 10 amps, voltage from 4 volts to 16 volts, power up to 160 watts, Milli amp hours up to 5000 mahr."

Daren
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Old Jul 15, 2003, 08:48 AM
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I stand corrected When I got mine there was only one version and I mistakenly thought the micrometer was called "Super"...
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Old Jul 15, 2003, 09:27 AM
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Los Alamos, NM, USofA
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I think you're correct about them changing the names. I'll have to look when I get home to see by what name they're calling the one I have.

Whatt I don't understand, is why if they're the same price, would someone buy the Micrometer when the Whattmeter does so much more. One of the mysteries of the universe I suppose.

Daren
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Last edited by Daren; Jul 15, 2003 at 09:30 AM.
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Old Jul 15, 2003, 05:17 PM
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SF Bay Area, Ca
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Quote:
Originally posted by Haldor
Whattmeter is a "must".
Yes, I have already added this to the next 'shopping' list!

Quote:
a $1k EDF will give you good power, though some single unit EDF's can approach $1,5k.
OK, so I am in the 'ball park' then. Good to know.

Quote:
10cells on the s480BB isnt a problem I think because the Vasa fan has a light load. Say the motor is good for 150W, having 10cells resulting in a 15A draw or 8cell giving 20A isnt much different. Its the total power that in most cases dictate motorlife.
Makes sense, given power equals voltage x current. Higher power (10 cells) plus lower current generates the same power and thus places the same (similar) load on a motor. I have heard that these Speed 480 Race motors are only really good for about 20 or so runs though. Is this right?

Quote:
As with most entry level gear you'll outgrow it quickly if you find yourself enjoying EDF's.
I guessed this already and that is why I have also been planning on a second airframe. I have a few ideas but am waiting to see how I go with the Alpha Jet first before making the purchase.

One idea is to pickup a Projeti with a brushless setup to get some of the speed fix. Then build a more serious EDF jet after that.

Quote:
The AlphaJet however will easily house higher powersetups when you feel the need to upgrade.
This is also good to know. It is a very simple airframe so I could see it will be easy to bolt a new higher performance fan/motor/battery onto the airframe.

Quote:
Break-in, run for a while on 3V with no prop/fan in the intended direction.
OK. This is easy. I will do it tonight whilst I am assembling the Vasafan. (Airframe is already done)

Quote:
Standarize on your connectors/plugs, use gold coated ones.
From my research I am considering just using Deans Ultra connectors for everything. Is there any downside to this choice? Where is the best place to buy small items like this that won't shaft me with high shipping costs?

Thanks for the tips. I appreciate it. BTW Haldor I really like your Mig-29!
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Old Jul 15, 2003, 05:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Daren
Whatt I don't understand, is why if they're the same price, would someone buy the Micrometer when the Whattmeter does so much more.
From a quick scan of the product specs. I think the 'micro' (lower voltage etc.) has more resolution to measure smaller changes.

So if you were only interested in 'Park Flyers' and had no need to measure above 10A or 160W then you would get a more accurate reading by using the lower capacity unit.
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Old Jul 16, 2003, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by maverick
So if you were only interested in 'Park Flyers' and had no need to measure above 10A or 160W then you would get a more accurate reading by using the lower capacity unit.
Yes, you're correct. Thanks for pointing that out, I had missed that.

Daren
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Old Jul 17, 2003, 10:51 PM
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Well the motor is now broken-in! I ran it without any load on 2 'D' dry cells in series (3V) until the cells were exahusted. The brushes are now nicely seated on the commutator.

I also bought a bunch of Deans Ultra connectors and everything is soldered up nicely now. I even made up a charge lead with banana plugs on one end and Deans Ultra on the other.

Thanks for all the help. It probably won't be my last questions though!
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Old Jul 17, 2003, 11:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by maverick
Thanks for all the help. It probably won't be my last questions though!
You're welcome and let's hope it never is.

Daren
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