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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:41 PM
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APM 2.5, ArduCopter, RC Timer ArduFlyer

Degraded GPS performance
Over the past month [February - March 2014] GPS performance has deteriorated,, some say it is because of solar activity, others say it is caused by various governments conducting interference testing.

Be aware that GPS reception can at times be nearly useless, if you rely on GPS and you are not careful that can put your flying at risk.

Links to some of the recent posts discussing this subject

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...postcount=2562

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...postcount=2629

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...postcount=2640

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...postcount=2643
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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:41 PM
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Tutorials


Rctimer dealers who offer LOCAL Warranty even if you purchased directly from Rctimer
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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:43 PM
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Frequently Asked Questions
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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:43 PM
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Testing Loiter Rcrimer AVDome, CN06 PLus, Arducopter 3.1.rc2 in 10 to 20 KPH wind (1 min 16 sec)


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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:44 PM
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Hot APM 2.5 topic right now is Auto Tune

Many seem to have problems getting Auto Tune to actually start.

Important facts you need to be aware of in order to successfully engage Auto Tune
  • You must have all TRIM and SUB TRIM on your radio set to ZERO, else ArduCopter will not be able to tell if you have in fact released all sticks on your radio.

  • You Must be in AltHold mode

  • You Must let go of ALL of your Radio sticks

  • You Must switch the switch you assigned in Mission Planner so it delivers
    Maximum PWM to engage AUTO TUNE, CHECK which position of your switch delivers Maximum PWM in Mission Planner - Radio Calibration

Auto Tune will ONLY START IF ALL of the above conditions are met

If you accidentally tried to engage Auto Tune while in Loiter or some other flight mode which is not Alt Hold
YOU MUST first switch Auto tune SWITCH OFF then change to Alt HOLD and THEN flip the switch again to engage Auto Tune

Sometimes Auto Tune cannot tune a frame, when that occurs Auto Tune has no way of announcing the fact it failed BUT it gives clues that you need to watch out for
  • Auto Tune will NOT SAVE any new PIDS if it fails

  • Auto Tune will keep doing ROLL and never progress to PITCH tune if it fails
I have only experienced the above on one frame in very windy gusty conditions. When I tried in completely calm conditions, auto tune did succeed BUT after flying that frame around for a while I concluded that the Frame, motor prop combination is NOT ideal, in fact it tends to be unstable when disturbed by the slightest gust of wind and at other times it appears to be very nervous and fidgety. From now on if auto tune fails I will interpret that to mean that frame needs further test with different props or motors because in my case it failed on 14" props but had no problem with 12" props, in the end the 14" prop setup is unstable, the 12" set up is perrrfect.
-- ALL THE ABOVE is VERY IMPORTANT-- read it, understand it, it will save a LOT of frustration
ArduCopter 3.1.0-rc5 BETA Firmware [Beta means use at your own risk for testing] is now available to download using Mission Planner

In Mission Planner select the correct COM PORT and select BaudRate of 115200
Connect USB cable to your ArduFlyer2.5 or APM 2.5 Board
DO NOT CLICK the Connect button, if you already clicked it, click on it again to Disconnect.
Click on INITIAL SETUP Button
Click on Install Firmware
Click on Beta firmware
Click on OK
Click on the icon for your frame
Click on OK
Mission Planner will respond with
Reading Hex
Uploading firmware
Verify Firmware
Done
Pay attention to the end of the operation, you should not see a verification error message.
Disconnect USB cable, wait a few seconds and reconnect USB cable
You are now ready to use 3.1.0-rc5 firmware

If you installed the Beta firmware and when testing Auto Tune in flight [see instructions below] if it doesn't start Auto tune when you flick the switch you assigned to CH 7 to MAX PWM then check that all your trims, sub trims and Expo are not fooling the Flight controller into thinking you have not let go of all your sticks, in other words all sticks need to be in the middle of their respective ranges, including throttle since you will be in Alt Hold flight Mode you may need to set THROTTLE_MID correctly.

You will need lots of space to fly in because the frame does move about quite a bit during Auto Tune even when there is no wind.

It is best done in really calm wind conditions.

You will need to take over at time to bring the frame back and away from obstacles it may drift toward, when you bring it back ENSURE the frame has stopped moving BEFORE releasing the sticks again.

You no longer have to edit full parameter list, I used Mission Planner 1.2.82 or later version and I could select Auto tune as Ch7 Opt in - CONFIGURATION - APM:Copter Pids, don't forget to also click on Write Params green button

Make sure you have completed Radio Calibration in Mission Planner otherwise the Flight controller will not correctly detect that your sticks are all in the middle and therefore will no start Auto Tune because it thinks you are moving the sticks.

Instructions on how to use auto tune
  1. Upload the Beta Firmware to your your ArduFlyer 2.5 or APM 2.5

  2. Select Auto tune as Ch7 or CH8 Opt in - CONFIGURATION - APM:Copter Pids, don't forget to also click on Write Params green button
  3. Ensure the ch7 or ch8 switch is in the off position [LOWEST PWM]
  4. Select Stabilize Mode ONLY - take off and put the copter into Alt Hold mode at a comfortable altitude
  5. release all the sticks, make sure they are all in their mid positions
  6. Put the ch7/ch8 switch into the upper most position [HIGHEST PWM] to engage auto tuning:
  7. It should start to roll back and forth straight away - there is no delay.
  8. You will see it twitch about 20 degrees left and right for a few minutes, then it will repeat forward and back
  9. Use the roll and pitch stick at any time to reposition the copter if it drifts away (it will use the original PIDs during repositioning and between tests) make sure the sideways movement of the frame has stopped before you release the sticks to allow Auto Tune to continue
  10. You can move the ch7/ch8 switch into the off position [LOWEST PWM] at any time to abandon the Auto Tuning and return to the original PIDs
  11. When the tune completes - you will be left in no doubt - as it will stop twitching - the copter will be left with the newly tuned PIDs active, fly around to see how it responds
  12. If you are happy with the new PIDs Leave the Ch7 switch in the ON position [Max PWM] - DO NOT turn it OFF before you land and Disarm or you will lose the newly calculated PIDs.
  13. Land Disarm to save the PIDs permanently - it is the DISARM with Ch7 switch in the ON [Max PWM] position which actually saves the newly calculated PIDs.
  14. Now turn OFF CH7 switch [LOW PWM] to turn off Auto Tune
Note: if you have a 3-position ch7/ch8 switch you can interrupt the tune at any time and test out the PIDs so far by putting the switch in the middle position


Auto Tune videos

Testing if Auto Tune Pause survives disarm, it doesn't (8 min 41 sec)


Phoenix hexa 3 1 rc4 auto tune after vibrations fixed (4 min 56 sec)


Auto Tune Ride (4 min 2 sec)


ArduCopter 3.1-rc3 Auto Tune save and loiter test (9 min 29 sec)


I tested Auto Tune using ArduCopter 3.1.0-rc5 Beta firmware, my results are here http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...1&postcount=57

There is a dedicated AC-3.1 autotune support discussion here -> http://diydrones.com/forum/topics/ac...ort-discussion
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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:44 PM
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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:45 PM
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High Resolution Photos of RC Timer ArduFlyer 2.5

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High Resolution Photos of RC Timer ArduFlyer 2.5.2

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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:45 PM
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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:46 PM
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Old Dec 10, 2013, 11:47 PM
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Old Dec 11, 2013, 12:55 AM
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Thanks Joe
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Old Dec 11, 2013, 01:14 AM
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Hi Joe!
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Old Dec 11, 2013, 01:39 AM
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Thanks once again JOE!
Rescpect !!!
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Old Dec 11, 2013, 01:39 AM
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cool, fresh start...
so will there be a way to prevent the bickering on this new thread?
Can certain problem users be blocked or excluded from a thread or perhaps have read-only access? is this something that an admin could take care of?

anyway, thanks...
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