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Old Dec 16, 2012, 11:46 PM
efx
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Flymentor

A few weeks back I finally got my flymentor and tried to use it on my Dragonus 450. Well I was barely able to hover it and the whole thing crashed making me not want to even look at the heli with this thing on. In any case this flymentor left me feeling pretty crappy. I don't want to put it on any of the other two 450s as I got them working great so I've been left without a heli to try this on. Tonight I decided I needed to get this thing mounted out and tested so I decided to use one of the 250s! I don't want to buy another heli for this. Yeah that looks like a nightmare just thinking about it, but I figured I could make this thing fit somehow. Needless to say here's what I came up with. I still need a new main shaft and grips as I already crashed my set one too many times. So I figured I tackle the flymentor install on the heli in the meantime. I put in a new tail boom last time so now it's just a waiting game for the new parts.

The helicopter feels a little bit heavier but not by much. I think the motor is the heaviest part. The weight feels balanced even with all this stuff so as long as I can get it working I hope it will be fine. Unfortunately the canopy won't fit due to the esc placement. I guess I could put it on the side, but I want to try and keep the weight balanced so I'll leave it alone for now. I'll be using it to train on it and I don't like those fiberglass canopies anyway.

I'll just call this my flymentor 250 mule...it's around ~360 grams with the battery now, but I still need the other parts. I may need a bigger battery and who knows what else if it dosn't work too well.
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 03:44 AM
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I took out the main shaft from my spare heli and also the grips so I could try and mess with this thing. Unfortunately I've been playing with the set up for the last few hours and all I can say is that this thing really sucks. Well at least the heli is all back together. It looks like I just killed another lipo trying to get this set up...what a pain in the rear this thing is.

It looks like it works fine on a 250, if you can ever get it programmed correctly.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=h2l1cSvAb2o
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 04:49 PM
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I've been going over these instructions by the letter and so far I think I got my servos working correctly again. In my case I had to swap 1 and 2 servos since my elevator kept moving in the wrong direction. So far I'm stuck at the gyro since I still can't figure out the gyro sense and sensor gain. I also can't figure out how you change from one mode to the other with the swtiches.
http://www.helifreak.com/showthread.php?t=267961
http://www.helifreak.com/showthread.php?t=177346

Changing to normal mode seems to be done with a gain value...well very confusing so I'll keep playing around with this and see if I can figure out what's what as the names seem to confuse me.
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 06:58 PM
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Okay I need to write some stuff up now. Here's how I have my flymentor plugged in. I basically followed the manual (FUTABA) connections for the 9x transmitter. To set the servos just follow Ivors instructions on above. I'm using the included gyro so I'm sort of stuck here at the moment. The cyclic servos are basically plugged in clockwise on the flymentor. I had to flip one and two on my setup in order to get the swash elevator to correct in the right direction. No biggie, but it was really messing me up.

I found that unless you unplug the green wire you won't be able to see the swash moving. The swash needs to go the opposite way from the tilt motion. Basically it's suppose to correct just like a flybarless gyro. Luckily I already set one of those up. If you don't have one, don't worry, just go to the flybarless set up I did. You can look at the video links I put there so you know what the swash needs to do. I mention this because you can hardly see it once you plug the wire in.

If I put the green wire on the gyro gain and the blue on chanel seven, nothing moves and I can't flip the heading hold switch to change from red to green as posted. So I ended up flipping these two wires and now I can change those two. Unfortunately the swash doesn't seem to move much still with them plugged in, but it seems that this is what works. Again I got the BLUE = Channel 5 and GREEN = Channel 7. I remember reading elsewhere that these were wrong, but can't find that info any more and it seems like it.

At the moment my heli is spinning really fast both ways so I'm having a tough time trying to figure out, where to flip the gyro and if it's working correctly. I have added a bit of dual rate to the rudder but still, the heli spins way too fast as soon as it gets off the ground so I'm not sure what the hell is going on. There are too many settings in the program that are not very clear to me. I'm not sure if the programmer even works since I plugged the computer on the flymentor and things were all reset for some reason. So I'm only using the computer and the tx at the moment. Oh by the way, the program only runs fine on windows XP which I found annoying. I tried windows 7, but no luck so I had to take out my old laptop just for this. So this is where I'm at after 3 days of trying.

The servo arm screw was just lose on my old servo so I just threw in one of the hk hv metal servos on. It works great, but I would like to see this thing fly if nothing else. I will test the heli in my hand since that's the only way I can be sure not to crash it. Just have to be very careful but it's easier on the 250. I may have to take this tail servo out. It seems to add a bit too much weight too.
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 07:40 PM
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Here are all helibal screens from the computer. Helibal is the program used to program the flymentor on a computer. It only works on windows xp, it's an older program but seems to work fine on my old laptop. You can tell it's old because there are still some weird characters on there as you can see and the fact that it's for xp. I should note that the programmer is pretty much the same if I remember correctly. You just need to also have the manual in front of you in order to figure out what some of the settings are or what they do exactly as there is no other description on there.
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 07:47 PM
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So far it looks like I have too much negative pitch so I need to work on that and also the tail. It seems to work much stronger to one side and not the other. I had to put it on the hand and let it rip to feel what the hell it's doing. Sorry I have no other way of doing this so do this at your own risk. At the moment I'm not getting what I want, so I'll have to keep messing with it.

On a side note, now I know for a fact that setting up a flybarless heli also takes some time, but it's much easier than setting up a flymentor heli. Well at least for me, although a 250 doesn't make things any easier for the lack of room. Which is really ironic since the flymentor is meant to help you learn to fly.
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Old Dec 19, 2012, 07:27 PM
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I decided to try this a bit more today and just can't get this thing figured out for the life of me. Well I can see the light change from red to green when I flip the switch so I know that is working correctly. The tail just doesn't seem to stay put. The helicopter either turns left so fast and even if I counter act the movent with the tail, then it just goes so fast the other way. I guess there is no reverse on this gyro as it looks like there are 3 gyros in one. I've been trying to figure that out, but since I just can't and I have tried high gain and low gain on the tail with the same results I thought I open it up to make sure nothing is broken. Everything looks fine though as you can see. I really don't know what the heck is going on and I have sat here with the manual and computer in front of me going through each setting one by one, but I'm just not having any luck setting this up. I may just take it to the park and let it rip and see if I can make it fly or just slam it into the ground since I can't get it dialed in. Or I may just put back my assan gyro and keep learing with just the gyros like I've been doing. I got the heli all set up, I just can't figure out what the heck is going on, maybe I just need to get out and really try it, who knows.

After staring and thinking about this for a while, it seems that the three individual sensors are just for each orientation and not individual gyros, which now I think is why the flymentor still works with your own gyro once you have the servos working correctly. Well, the balancer part at least.
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Old Dec 19, 2012, 08:52 PM
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Since I was in the curiosity mode, I decided to take apart the main flymentor controller. I figured I might as well check the solder on it. It looks like some of the pins may need a bit retouching with solder though. I'm not sure but here are those pictures.
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Old Dec 20, 2012, 01:07 AM
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I decided to get this on video. This is what the flymentor does and I have played with the gain settings and still I get the same thing. I also limited the end points on the radio, works fine, but still no luck. I just wanted to show people what this thing actually does, at least the one I got. If you have better luck, please feel free to post.
Flymentor test after trying to get it going...never flew. (2 min 29 sec)
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Old Dec 20, 2012, 02:53 AM
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I had forgotten to add the programmer picture on here. The reason is that I never saw where the cable connected to it on any other thread. Unfortunately it's on the bottom of the programmer and the cable that comes with it is very short so I just wanted to show this to anyone else that may be interested in the flymentor. The programmer seems to work fine and although it's all plastic just works once you figure out how to use it which is not too bad. Other than the wrong side for the plug and the short proprietary cable it does the job. Too bad I couldn't get my flymentor unit working, yet. Believe me, I have tried as I was hoping to use this for my own training.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 08:24 PM
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Thanks for doing the write up efx,I have been eyeing the flymentor for awhile now,was thinking of putting it on my blade sr.I did by a dx6i to help tame it,but havn't tried yet.I think teh flymentor may be too much mass to put on a little heli like the sr.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 10:55 PM
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You're welcome. I was hoping I could get it going but unfortunately I stilll haven't. If you get yours working please post here in case I did miss anything as I'm just not sure what else to change to make mine work at the moment. If you can use a larger heli that may be a better option just for the room you get but there's no reason it shouldn't work on the smaller helicopters either.

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Originally Posted by maurice076 View Post
Thanks for doing the write up efx,I have been eyeing the flymentor for awhile now,was thinking of putting it on my blade sr.I did by a dx6i to help tame it,but havn't tried yet.I think teh flymentor may be too much mass to put on a little heli like the sr.
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Old Dec 26, 2012, 07:53 PM
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I decided to keep messing with this for a bit again today. Before that though, I should mention that I did try to get the aux and mix working on the stock 9x firmware to assign a switch so I could turn the flymentor on and off. Unfortunately I could not get that to work, but my guess is that if you have the erx or openerx software, then you should be able to assign a switch to that function, although I'm still puzzled as to how that is actually set up to make it work on the flymentor.

Now back to the topic. I've decided to just take off the included gyro completely, I can't for the life of me seem to make it work, so before I start breaking parts, I just took that off and put back my assan ga250. So far this gyro has been fine for learning and getting me off the ground. I know there are some that won't recommend it for more heavy duty 3d, etc which I'm still not doing, but there are many choices out there in case you don't want to use the same gyro or just don't like it. I'm still just learning to stay on the air, so I'll just use this for now as it's the smallest gyro I also have that I can put on this 250. On a side note, I also put this on my .30 nitro heli that I'm setting up. It's a very old heli and I know I won't be trying any 3d on it, but now that tail is also working beautifully. In short, use whatever works for you. I won't recommend anything as I'm still fairly new to all of this. So look at all the other options out there too, don't just follow what I do. I just try to show you my experience with what I have so far.

I went outside and tried to see if I could just hover...I had no luck. The flymentor is on 0 balancer so I could set up the gyro, but something weird happens that feels like the battery got drained in a few seconds of throttle. I ended up putting in a new battery connector and soldering one of my battery alarm leads. Both apparently have been slowly coming off. So I put a new battery and tested the heli in my hand again because it's now dark and pretty chilly outside. I tried with the balancer at 70 and let it rip...I move the sticks and low and behold, when I let go off the aileron/elevator stick, everything goes back to center!!! So the balancer seems to work, without the included gyro. It now seems to work (react) just like my flybarless gyro. Well the head that is, meaning when I left go of the right hand sticks (mode2) the flymentor goes back to level. Keep in mind that you need to get the head moving in the right direction which was very hard to see when I was setting it up. I couldn't see it do this after I had it all set up, so I just put my thumb and index finger on the arms to feel those when not spinning the heli but checking the cyclics. Maybe it's because the green and blue leads where connected and maybe in the wrong place too. Who knows as the flymentor has been very weird to set up.

I'm attaching some pictures. I basically have left those 3 wires off to keep things simple. I plugged my assan to port 4 and 5 of the receiver just like before and nothing on 4 and 5 on the flymentor. All other settings are still the same on the flymentor. I did bring down the balancer to 60 because it seems to react extremely fast so I will need to adjust that later.

Normal rate doesn't seem to work too well, so I'm leaving at HH for now just to test, but I'll have to do more fine tuning after I can get it up in the air and really get a feel for it. If I want to turn the flymentor off I need to just bring the balancer setting to 0 with the programmer, then the LED turns red and I should be able to fly normally, assuming the trims are working correctly. This is a learning heli, so I won't even bother doing that as I have my other helis if I want to just fly without any help from anytyhing.

I have been messing with my throttle curves and don't go below 60 at the max as it was kind of slow and didn't seem to want to move with all this stuff. Sixty is just a sort of starting point because 100 seem a bit high. I also found out that the reason it wanted to also smack to the left was due to one of my new links that was too tight and not moving. I've been moving it to losen it up. Always something. Once I get it all sorted out I think I should be able to hover without a problem if I don't crash it before that trying to tune it.
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