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Old May 08, 2011, 09:24 AM
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Sussex,GB / Azores
Joined Apr 2008
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Fishing with RC sailboat

Hello folks, I have done a little 1M class sailing and plenty of RC flying.

I spend half my time in the Azores Islands (and half in GB) and have been contemplating building an RC sailboat for taking lines+baits out to sea some distance and then releasing them.
I also want to try trolling with an RC boat. The line will still be attached to rod+reel but the boat will be towing the end with the spinner which can be released if there is a fish.

My main concern is range. I have 27mhz and 35mhz gear. I know that my 35mhz gear in aircraft apps has an out-of-sight range but how far would it be for surface use? (I know, 35mhz is aircraft only but in the Azores nobody gives a damn).
Any suggestions on what gear to use for maximum range or how to boost it?
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Old May 08, 2011, 02:10 PM
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Sussex,GB / Azores
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So, have any of you ever sailed out of RC range?

I suppose I could try it with the boat still attached to a fishing rod. If it goes out of control, I can always reel it back in. Hoping to get 200-300 yds/metres out of it.
I suppose I could also sail the boat back "on" the line, with the line running through a ring after the end tackle has been dropped.

The other advantage of using an RC boat would be that it can take out a trace with a small bag of groundbait/Burley/Rubbydubby on it which is something you can't do with beachcasting.
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Old May 08, 2011, 03:08 PM
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Blackpool, Lancs
Joined Feb 2006
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I've had 400metres on 27MHz. I couldn't tell which way it was pointing, but it was definitely changing direction about the same time I waggled the stick. Not wanting to upset any flyboys, I wouldn't even consider using 35MHz on a boat. Laws in the Azores might differ.
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Old May 08, 2011, 03:37 PM
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Asturias, Spain
Joined Mar 2001
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In the Azores, as in the rest of Portugal, I would advise you to check on the permitted RC surface frequencies, rather than just using the frequency illegally.
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Old May 08, 2011, 04:04 PM
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Sussex,GB / Azores
Joined Apr 2008
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35mhz is the Portuguese rc aircraft band, same as GB.
The only people using 35mhz on my particular Island are a friend of mine, his cousin and me, and even they fly at the other end of it on a different frequency. We are the only aeromodellers there.
There are quite a few RC car racers though, presumably on 27, 40 and 2.4g.
There is zero risk of downing an RC plane, most people there have never seen one, ours pull small crowds from nowhere.
Back to the topic...

@mfr02: 400m is a good distance! I think I can only get about 300m on the fishing reels I have. It could mean being into Tuna. I don't think big game fish like Marlin come that close, though the waters in the Azores drop quite deep at that distance.
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Old May 08, 2011, 04:37 PM
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Asturias, Spain
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Markx View Post
35mhz is the Portuguese rc aircraft band, same as GB.
The only people using 35mhz on my particular Island are a friend of mine, his cousin and me, and even they fly at the other end of it on a different frequency. We are the only aeromodellers there.
There are quite a few RC car racers though, presumably on 27, 40 and 2.4g.
There is zero risk of downing an RC plane, most people there have never seen one, ours pull small crowds from nowhere.
Back to the topic...

...
As well as liking fishing, I'm another ex-pat (full time) and would be even more observant of the regulations in my host country. Your justification lasts just until someone unknown to you tries to fly on your channel and crashes. Presumably http://pontadelgada-azores.olx.pt/av...-iid-145573279 belongs to you, your friend or his cousin? If there a a few car racers, there may be second hand 40mHz radios. Why run the risk?
Are these poster's all known to you? http://forum.rcmpt.com/viewtopic.php?t=5242
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Old May 08, 2011, 09:48 PM
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Steinbach, MB, Canada
Joined Nov 2004
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Hi Markx,

My first question to you would be, are there many CB'ers on your island?...if the answer is no, then use the 27Mhz band. if it is a more modern 27Mhz radio, you may NOT have any problems of radio interference, as many of the modern 'parkflyers' that come as RTF have 27Mhz radios and they seem to fly with little or no interference.

I have sailed sailboats on 27Mhz easily 300 yds away with full control.

However, I have a suggestion. Find a local bay that you can easily drive from one point to the other, get one of your buddies to stay with the boat and you drive to the other point and by following pre determined hand signals, you move the rudder and the sailarm. Try a predetermined number of movements. Make sure that both your buddy and yourself are on the beach or at water level anyway. If you have access to a local jetty, then you can place the boat in the water and tie it off, and walk a distance away along the coast.
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Old May 09, 2011, 02:45 AM
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Sussex,GB / Azores
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martin richards View Post
As well as liking fishing, I'm another ex-pat (full time) and would be even more observant of the regulations in my host country. Your justification lasts just until someone unknown to you tries to fly on your channel and crashes. Presumably http://pontadelgada-azores.olx.pt/av...-iid-145573279 belongs to you, your friend or his cousin? If there a a few car racers, there may be second hand 40mHz radios. Why run the risk?
Are these poster's all known to you? http://forum.rcmpt.com/viewtopic.php?t=5242
LOL!
Firstly, My prime reason for getting away from GB is precisely because of the nanny state and the brit's blind submissive obedience of Nanny (Like waiting in front of a red traffic light at 3am in the morning in a deserted countryside).
To give you an idea how things work on the island: A young Policeman new from the mainland was pushing his weight around and fining people for the silliest things. They found him tied to a tree naked on top of a hill. Since then he's been much less eager.
In short, locals employ common sense to get on with each other and there is an extremely low crime rate.

NINE islands make up the Azores, Sao Miguel (Ponta Delgada) being the most populated.
Conversely, my Island has the lowest population per square KM and if someone flies RC planes I would be told and introduced to them.
You may be aghast to learn that we don't have insurance either.
Now, BACK TO THE TOPIC.
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Old May 09, 2011, 02:52 AM
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Sussex,GB / Azores
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Originally Posted by Sackie View Post
Hi Markx,

My first question to you would be, are there many CB'ers on your island?...if the answer is no, then use the 27Mhz band. if it is a more modern 27Mhz radio, you may NOT have any problems of radio interference, as many of the modern 'parkflyers' that come as RTF have 27Mhz radios and they seem to fly with little or no interference.

I have sailed sailboats on 27Mhz easily 300 yds away with full control.

However, I have a suggestion. Find a local bay that you can easily drive from one point to the other, get one of your buddies to stay with the boat and you drive to the other point and by following pre determined hand signals, you move the rudder and the sailarm. Try a predetermined number of movements. Make sure that both your buddy and yourself are on the beach or at water level anyway. If you have access to a local jetty, then you can place the boat in the water and tie it off, and walk a distance away along the coast.
Useful advice. I think I will test it by sailing it out attached to the fishing rod as if in use but further and on low batteries. If it misbehaves then, I can reel it back in. I'll make it so it can carry out more than one line eventually, so I can fish with two rods or use it for trolling.
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Old May 09, 2011, 12:43 PM
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Germany
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Originally Posted by Markx View Post
My main concern is range. I have 27mhz and 35mhz gear. I know that my 35mhz gear in aircraft apps has an out-of-sight range but how far would it be for surface use? (I know, 35mhz is aircraft only but in the Azores nobody gives a damn).
Any suggestions on what gear to use for maximum range or how to boost it?
May sound like a stupid idea, but have you thought about testing what you have on dry land or the beach, just have some-one walk and say every 50 metres stop and do a TX/RX check ?

Cheers K1
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Old May 09, 2011, 03:50 PM
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Sussex,GB / Azores
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Originally Posted by KoneWone View Post
May sound like a stupid idea, but have you thought about testing what you have on dry land or the beach, just have some-one walk and say every 50 metres stop and do a TX/RX check ?

Cheers K1
Yes, that would be one way but I'm not sure if the behaviour would be the same on the water. The boat and aerial are bobbing about in the waves, possibly violently.
From what posters have said so far though, I should get 3-400 metres which is about what a fishing reel can hold.
I'm in GB at the moment but quite looking forward to this project!
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Old May 09, 2011, 09:56 PM
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Steinbach, MB, Canada
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Hi again Markx,

Use a clip, like a clothes clip, on the back of the boat, and run the line through it, it will need to have a certain amount of tension holding the line, cannot be a normal clothes clip with the space between the sides, because you will not have constant tension as the boat is sailing left to right and back again (across the beach in front of you), but it cannot have too much tension such that it does NOT release when a fish strikes, or, that will DAMAGE the line as it is pulled out of the clip with the fish strike. Burrs on a fishing line cause lost fish, the line breaks at that point.....

Remember that as the boat sails left to right parallel with the coast line, you will be dragging the line, between you and the boat, through the water in a huge bow, as the boat sails along, you need to determine that tension if you can, and then you need just a tad more on the clip.....nice, interesting idea, have considered it myself a time or two, but for me the above challenge became too great without damaging the line.......
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Old May 10, 2011, 02:11 AM
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Sussex,GB / Azores
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Sackie, I am planning to have an extra servo for the line release catches.
It'll be a long pin which is retracted trough various holes. That way I can have a number of lines for bait fishing (if the boat can tow more than one)

I gather that when trolling for big game fish they do have a 'loop' that is released when the fish strikes, to give it time to turn the lure and swallow it. I may well need to incorporate a sprung clip like you say.

LOL, I'm thinking if there does happen to be a game fish out there it's just as likely to go for the boat as the lure.
BTW, the biggest Great White ever recorded was caught by a fishing boat near my Island, that's what kind of puts me off doing Canoe fishing.
We also see dolphins on an almost daily basis and occasionally whales. I suppose I better not do any trolling when there are Dolphins around.
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Old May 10, 2011, 02:43 AM
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Sussex,GB / Azores
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For the actual boat I'm thinking of doing it on the cheap and utilitarian to start with.
A jib-less design would simplify things a lot. (RC laser: http://www.google.co.uk/search?um=1&...qi=g4&aql=&oq= )
Rather than going through the trouble of constructing a vessel I may well lose from wood or GRP I am thinking of using shaped PVC drain pipe (Plastic moulding is my business).
I could make a GRP mould or vacuum form for it later but if pipe works, there's no point.
By heating I could shape the bow and stern somewhat.
Presently thinking of making it about 30"/75cm long.
The deck, keel, keelweight and rudder have to be shaped so line can't catch on them.

Where would be the best place for the attachement point/catches for the fishing lines???
A) The stern? That might pull the stern around an make it difficult to steer?
B) On the Deck as close to the middle as possible? The sheet line is in the way unless I have a fixed tube that sticks out horizontally from the mast.
C) At the bottom of the keel? This would allow the boat to do 360 degree turns when trolling.
Any suggestions or ideas?
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Old May 10, 2011, 12:25 PM
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The idea of a "Bait Boat" is a good one, but I've not read of anyone using a sailboat for that purpose. Operating a model sailboat through breaking surf, can be challenging even without a tow. In cases where the surf is aligned with the wind, a sailboat will have to head up directly into the wind to take the wave at the safest angle. That means loosing headway and steerage at the critical time of the passing wave. Breaking waves equal to the beam of a vessel can easily cause a capsize and even though your ballasted sailboat hull will right itself, the fishing line may have fouled the rigging during the process. An extremely low aspect ratio sail rig with a low center of effort "may" have a better chance of negotiating surf conditions.

The best "Bait Boats" I've read of have been displacement type multihull designs of electric power, with unlimited maneuvering ability and no rigging to foul lines. The greatest negative of the multihull approach is that the vessel will not be self-righting, so the beam would need to be fixed to match the average wave height, to decrease the chance of capsize. The electric powered boat is also easier to recover after "fish on", so you can devote more attention to fighting the fish.

If still inclined to try the sailing bait boat concept, I'd consider a displacement type catamaran, with multiple low aspect ratio biplane sail rigs. I'd set the beam to match the average wave height expected to encounter. I'd also expect to spend quite a bit of time sorting out fouled lines, time that could be spent fishing.

Good Luck!!!
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