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Old Nov 10, 2006, 08:55 AM
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Optio S7 and the 19.4oz Slowstick

Well this is my 5th AP plane, and I finally broke the 20oz flying weight with a 7mp camera. Here is the set up

-GWS Slow Stick (Old kit lighter wing -carbon reinforced. New kit 2pc aluminum stick, 2" raised custom motor mount, and thicker tailfeathers. Carbon reinforced landing gear & stock wheels)

-Camera: Pentax Optio S7 w/ hs55 servo trigger & aluminum mount
-Motor: Himax 2808 -980kv
-Battery: Apogee 3S 1050mah
-Prop: Apc 9x6
-Rx: Spekrtum 2.4ghz
-Servos: 2x Eflight S75

Maiden on the weekend.........

Cam
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Old Nov 10, 2006, 09:15 AM
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Wow, that is really light. Good looking SS.

My extended fuse SS (with camera & 3S 2100) weighs in at a whale-like 34 oz.

Have a good flight with your maiden.

R/E
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Old Nov 10, 2006, 01:06 PM
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Good luck and post pics after the maiden! I am very interested to see how the S7 works!

/Icebear
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Old Nov 10, 2006, 02:25 PM
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R/E

Yeah I know what you mean about 34 OZ. My last AP plane before this was also a Slow Stick, but with a 6mp Casio camera, a park 450 motor, and a 2100may battery. It was 33OZ (see picture). I found it would drop like a rock when gliding. It was quite overbuilt. That said, with the type of flying that is associated with Ap, It has occured to me that you really dont need a bullet proof airframe. I mean all of my actual shots are done while gliding, usually at 100 -300' altitude. And while under power I likely never exceed 20mph. I always hand launch (usualy due to lack of runway at the job sights). When landing I generally just come it nice and slow, then at the last second, nose up, add power and plant it. It usually just drops and hardly even rolls. Who really cares if it noses over. Nice springy landing gear is a must. Anyways the plan with this plane was to not add anything that it really didn't need. Just the bare essentials, and it paid off. So far the ground shots with the S7 are looking good. It did take a lots of playing with the set up to get it where I wanted it though. I use the program setting, no flash, infinity focus, +0.7 ev shift, + sharpness, -contrast, auto iso, centre spot light metering. Can't wait to get those first aerial shots.

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Old Nov 11, 2006, 01:56 PM
Studies the wind
ghoti's Avatar
United States, CA, Yountville
Joined Nov 2004
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Cam,
What size prop is on that SS and why so high up? Bill
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Old Nov 11, 2006, 01:58 PM
Studies the wind
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United States, CA, Yountville
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I mean any reason other than to get lens out of the prop circle?
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Old Nov 11, 2006, 02:17 PM
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Bill,
On this stick I wanted to be able to do straight forward looking video without tilting the camera down, so moving the prop that high was the only way to get it completly out of the picture. The prop is an 11" (works best with the park 450). However, even with the prop raised that high the plane handles reasonably well. The 9" prop on my new set up required only a 2" pylon to get the prop out of sight. The closer the camera is to the prop the better as well. Although now it will be the first one ot the scene of the accident!

Too bad it's raining today, I'm just itching to do the maiden.

Cam
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Old Nov 12, 2006, 06:08 PM
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Optio S7 first shots

Well guess who paid a visit to the camera shop today for an exchange. The Pentax Optio S7 is terrible in the air, absolutely terrible. Actually its not great on the ground in low light either. My 2mp blip-cam took way better shots, Its seems that the S7 isn't capable of taking a good picture no matter how I set it up. Really too bad, I had high hopes. Below are some pictures for a comparison from my old Casio 6mp vs the new Pentax 7mp, and a blip cam pic. Well I left the store with a new Panisonic Lumix FX3 instead.

To be Continued

Cam
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Old Nov 14, 2006, 03:43 AM
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I reckon the S7 is pretty good. I took some aerials of a small island in the Coral sea, off Australia (used by the national weather serivce for cyclone tracking) during construction a few weeks ago - I found the shots to be excellent.

My settings were:
Manual focus, one click short of infinity.
Iso 100.
evaluative metering.
-1/3 ev (underexposure by 1/3 stop).
stock sharpness, contrast and saturation.

I've attached a shot straight out of the camera (re-sampled down only) but it is very clear at full size.

Perhaps you should have tried different settings

Kahn
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Old Nov 14, 2006, 05:58 AM
RIP Ric
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Marietta, GA
Joined Jun 1999
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My guess is low light. Look at the good example - plenty of sharp shadows, a nice sunny day. Every one of your "bad" examples have no shadows..

Even my Aiptek can take great, sharp pics with vibrant color in full sun. In cloudy conditions, it's not even worth putting it up.
..a
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Old Nov 14, 2006, 02:10 PM
Slow is beautiful
Alex Slowfly's Avatar
Switzerland
Joined Nov 2004
174 Posts
Quote:
Nice springy landing gear is a must.
That's an interesting one. How does one turn the stock SS LG into one that can take some extra load?? - some input please, please....

Alex SF
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Old Nov 14, 2006, 04:31 PM
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My solution (and others) is to solder two SS LG together down near the axle and have them "V" up to the fuse.

I cut the axles off of one pair and put in a slight bend to accomplish the "V" and twist copper wire around the mating wires and then solder both. This gives two top tongues to insert into two LE wing brackets - one of which is cut down to the nubs if desired.

If just slightly heavier than stock, a piece of kevlar thread between both LG legs will keep the stock gear from spreading too far.

R/E
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Old Nov 14, 2006, 10:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex Slowfly
That's an interesting one. How does one turn the stock SS LG into one that can take some extra load?? - some input please, please....

Alex SF
I use 1/8" carbon rod, and a piano wire as a tie rod. Have a look at my first picture posted.

Kahn, Wow nice shot with the S7. I should be so lucky.
Also, yes the images were in low light, but still nowhere near as good as the Casio takes. I did try many different settings including full +2 ev shift. The shots were still blurry. 3 of the shots were actually cut off half way through, and the bottom half was blank? The guy at the camera shop said they have had a lot of the S7's returned, and they weren't recomending them to anyone. Anyways I made another trip to the Camera shop this time for the Panasonic FX07. The FX3 went back without being tested. The manual covered the FX07 and FX3. Upon further reading I found that the FX07 has the aerial photo mode and the FX3 didn't, so that and the 7mp vs 6 is why I made the switch.

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Old Nov 14, 2006, 10:44 PM
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I attached the bad files from the S7, 1 from the ground, and 2 fron the air. Anyone ever seen this type of thing before? The guy at the camera shop said the he had heard of the S7 doing this, but had never seen an example.

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Last edited by thecam; Nov 14, 2006 at 10:51 PM.
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Old Oct 17, 2007, 06:09 PM
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United States, CA, Tehachapi
Joined Nov 2005
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Scratch the S7 off my list.

The A20 has me a tad concerned on the low light problems.

And the hunt continues...

Frank
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