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Posted by JumpySticks | Jul 05, 2012 @ 06:57 PM | 9,151 Views
In case someone has not seen what you can do with a GPS data logger and Google Earth, here are a couple of screen capture videos. You can do this with any KML or KMZ file, including those posted below in the blog.

The first one shows how you can rotate around the flight graphic.

The second one shows how to playback a flight (you can play in real time or speeded up) in fast motion. It also shows how to enable the flight profile and select portions of the profile for data readings, such as (average, min and max) slope, speed, altitude, distance.

Full screen recommended.

Rotate GE Clip (0 min 13 sec)
Flight Replay and Flight Profile Demo (1 min 32 sec)
Posted by JumpySticks | Apr 09, 2012 @ 06:43 PM | 11,156 Views
This post combines information for Canmore GPS Logging, Video Cameras, and combining the video/gps using Dashware.

Canmore GPS
I highly recommend this GPS unit for plotting flights. A bit larger than a bic lighter, and only $39.95!

It has a built in lipo battery which will power the unit all day. It can store data for an entire day, or more. It has a button to mark the beginning and end of each flight making it easy to split your flights into separate files. It recharges by plugging into any hot usb port. It comes with software which allows you to program the unit to adjust the log rate by time or distance, down to every second or every meter. The software will generate simple google earth plots of your flight, or you can save the raw data and convert it to more complex plots for Google Earth, or even save the data to Excel. Conversion of raw GPS data is easy once you become familiar with the steps, as discussed elsewhere in the blog. Super small, it fits easily under the canopy and does not interfere with the receiver. I simply tape it under the canopy.

I recommend setting the logger to record at 1 second intervals.

See blog for examples of flight logs generated for Google Earth.
Here is a post with instructions for creating Google Earth files from Canmore Data.

•Acquire and track 65 satellites simultaneously
•SKYTRAQ low power chipset
•Signal detection better than -160dBm
•Reacquisition sensitivity -155dBm
•Cold start < 30 seconds at -...Continue Reading
Posted by JumpySticks | Mar 28, 2012 @ 10:47 PM | 10,031 Views
A few folks have purchased Canmore loggers, so I wanted to bring this mini tutorial up to the top.Step by step instructions for converting raw GPS flight data to Google Earth plots.

Also added step by step screenshots for using GPX Editor Software (free) to split multiple flights into separate segments which can then be converted to KMZ file using GPS Visualizer. The segments may be viewed all at once with Google Earth, or you can select individual segments to view, including the elevation profile for all or individual flights.

Thanks to labrown and CloudyIFR for finding and for assistance with GPX Editor software!

Attached Thumbnails

  • Select Export data file.

  • Chose file to export.
...Continue Reading
Posted by JumpySticks | Jan 07, 2012 @ 01:50 PM | 9,582 Views
With some help from moparherb, I set up a throttle cut off switch, and got an added bonus.
Been looking for a way to get proportional flaps on the throttle stick, and now I have it.
Here's how:
First using moparherb's throttle cut off mix, tied to the mix switch (aileron rudder mix which I do not use)
I use mix 3
make it a THRO to THRO mix
POS 0 Should be 0% in both Positions
POS 1 make both settings -100% that is minus 100%
you do that by changing the position of throttle stick
Set Offset to -200 that is minus 125
make sure that "mix" is set to position 1

Now when you put the throttle hold switch in position 1 (toward you) the motor will be disabled.

An added bonus..I used another mix Throttle>Gear to give me proportional flaps on the throttle stick when the throttle cut off switch is off. That's something I've been wanting for a long time! So now I can launch, then hit the throttle cut off and the flaps are at 0. Pulling back the throttle deploys the flaps proportionately to full flaps when the stick is full back. Awesome!

Here are the mix settings for my RP, for proportional throttle:
I used mix 5:
RATE: 0%
Posted by JumpySticks | Sep 19, 2011 @ 10:57 PM | 10,539 Views
Here are some recent videos.
091711 bestTRIMMED (14 min 57 sec)

091711 Second Best (14 min 17 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by JumpySticks | Aug 15, 2011 @ 06:43 PM | 10,650 Views
Here are a couple of videos I shot this weekend out in the marsh (Wing and corresponding Forward views of two flights on subsequent days). I was hoping to film some Osprey that have been seen thermaling in the area, but they never showed.

The area you see here was about 95% covered with marsh grasses as recently as 50 years ago. Prior to the construction of the levee system on the Mississippi River, floods carried sediment into these marshes annually, replenishing the soil with rich sediment deposits. The river was leveed to protect river commerce and to protect folks who lived there from annual flooding. The result is that the marshes no longer recieve the replenishing sediment from the Mississippi River, and they are eroding/subsiding away. What we attempted to protect we unintenionally have nearly destroyed.

The many dead live oaks you see have succomed to salt water intrusion. Storm surges from hurricanes further exacerbate the problem of saltwater intrusion.

In spite of all that, it is still a beautiful place to visit. The fishing and bird watching is still first rate. You may notice structures floating on the banks of the larger canals. These are called "paupieres" (pronounced poe-pierre) which may be rooted in the word pauper. They are usually run by shrimpers who cannot afford a shrimp boat. Strong tidal currents occur once or twice a day here, and when the tide is changing they lower the nets and the current carries shrimp into the net. On a good day they will catch several hundred pounds of shrimp in each net. That also gives you an idea why there are so many birds around, and why the fishing is so good.

8/14/11-Wing view:
PAC081411Wing.avi (10 min 54 sec)

8/14/11-Forward view:
PAC081411Front (10 min 50 sec)

8/13/11-Sunset Wing view:
PAC081311Wing2.avi (14 min 40 sec)

8/13/11-Sunset Forward view:
PAC081311Front2.avi (14 min 35 sec)

Posted by JumpySticks | Aug 07, 2011 @ 03:49 PM | 10,600 Views
Think I'll start bringing the contour out on a tripod to film the sky from the ground. When the video is sped up you can better see how convection works. It's a little bit mesmerizing to watch. Great for those days when you need a nap and golf or baseball is not boring enough.
Clouds at900frdec30 (1 min 27 sec)

Fast Motion Clouds (1 min 34 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by JumpySticks | Aug 03, 2011 @ 12:45 PM | 10,975 Views
A couple weeks ago my keycam captured a real nice sequence of a hawk approaching the glider.

I have the sequence of stills posted here.

These stills were clipped out using VDub>export>Image sequence>jpg.
The sequence is little more than 1/2 second, about 20 frames.
hawk (0 min 1 sec)

Posted by JumpySticks | Jul 30, 2011 @ 09:50 PM | 10,734 Views
Here are a few videos from a short flying session yesterday evening near sunset. The cameras get a little sketchy with low light, dropping frames. I still think they work remarkably well. Still working on more fluid plane movements for shooting video. It's hard to resist chasing those little pockets of lift when you sense them.
There are a few really lovely shots of the sunset, particularly when the ground is out of the picture and the camera adjusts to the light from only the sky. The later ones begin to get dropped frames due to low light. It's really darker than apparent in the video. For clip 13, it was difficult to see the plane. The city lights look good in No. 13 as well if you can get past the frame drops.
Sunset Cruise 1 (3 min 28 sec)

Sunset Cruise 6 (2 min 23 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by JumpySticks | Jul 14, 2011 @ 07:59 PM | 11,343 Views
Several have pm'd me about where to order the #11 keycam.
Mine came from here.

There is a really comprehensive thread discussing the keycams, mods, and video software, faithfully moderated by Tom Frank, found here. Anything and everything you need to know. Just be sure to read the first five posts in the thread before asking questions that have been asked a hundred times. Those first posts are constanly being updated with the latest faq information. Tom is a great guy and always willing to assist with new issues and questions about these particular camcorders.

WARNING....This is really ugly, but I promised that I would upload pictures of the wing mounts for the keycam. Embarrassingly low tech and ragged destruction of the wings. It was a struggle to force myself to cut these holes through the wing, but considering the amount of use and abuse on this plane, I figure I will be buying a pnp one of these days and stashing this one for parts.
Warning....the following pictures are graphic in nature......
Posted by JumpySticks | Jul 12, 2011 @ 06:50 PM | 11,170 Views
Crow from 3:29 to 4:36. Crow and Flap from 5:30 to 6:50.
Must have been a strong thermal because the plane went up at times with crow and with crow/flap. With Crow and flap the flap is nearly 90 degrees down. Only thing left is to raise the ailerons more.
It does prevent overspeeding.
I will increase the deflection of the ailerons and test again next time to see if it comes down better.

Test of Crow and Crow with Flap (15 min 1 sec)

Finally got Dashware to work.....marginally. Still crashing quite a bit though.

More from this weekend. Good thermal activity but no record breakers.
HawkFly (8 min 3 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by JumpySticks | Jul 04, 2011 @ 09:55 PM | 11,149 Views
I now have a keycam embedded in each wingtip. One facing forward and one facing the canopy. The canopy view is awesome.
Here are a few clips.
First Keycam Test (3 min 23 sec)

Wingcam 1 Flight4 (5 min 34 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by JumpySticks | Jun 26, 2011 @ 04:27 PM | 11,334 Views
Here is the best from this morning.
7 minutes.mp4 (7 min 42 sec)

Posted by JumpySticks | Jun 19, 2011 @ 09:33 AM | 11,986 Views
Here are a couple of videos using Dashware software to add flight data to the video file. In this case the flight data is from the Contour GPS camera, but the program can use data from a number of sources. There are a number of gauges you can add to your videos.

You can do this with a keycam and a gps logger too. Total cost for the Keycam, the Canmore Logger and the Dashware software would be around $150.00.
15 Minutes of Fame (15 min 19 sec)

Good 10 Minute Flight with thermals.mp4 (10 min 37 sec)

Another clip with the map and altitude profile gauges added.

Map and Chart (3 min 3 sec)
Posted by JumpySticks | Jun 10, 2011 @ 10:14 PM | 11,508 Views
The winds have finally subsided and we are in our normal pattern of afternoon heating and good convection.

I had two good thermal flights today. One with the Contour GPS Camera which went over 14 minutes on a 45 second burn, and maxed out at just over 1100 feet. The next flight was with only the Canmore GPS logger, and it went 20 minutes on a 40 second burn, maxing out at just under 1100 feet.
Contour Video here.
Posted by JumpySticks | May 26, 2011 @ 09:33 PM | 12,137 Views
I found a crack which goes about halfway through my fuselage near the front of the radio room. The plane has been vibrating a bit and also wanting to veer right under power. At first I thought that it was a loose motor mount, so I did a little work up front, tightening and reinforcing the mounting lugs. That did not fix the vibration. I also had noticed that the fuse appeared to be warped like a bannana, and I thought maybe it had gotten warm or something. While getting ready to warp it back I noticed the crack.

The plan is to work a thin piece of fabric into the crack, soak part of the fabric strip with water, and then soak the end of the strip with gorilla glue. Then I will drag the strip through the crack, first applying water to the surfaces, then glue. Then I will clamp the crack shut and allow the glue to dry. Report to follow.

Here are photos of the fabric placement in the crack.

Ended up dripping in some CA and clamping the gap tight. Worked fine.
Posted by JumpySticks | May 11, 2011 @ 12:43 PM | 14,593 Views
Here is a list of the most common modifications.

Better Prop-Spinner
Carbon Fiber Spar.
Bigger battery-personal preference.
Sand or replace sticky pushrods-Sullivan Goldn Rods.
EZ connectors for rudder and elevator servos to avoid conflict at max servo throw.
Fairings for under wing controls-home made or Here.
Painting or adding dark film under wing for visibility. Monocote stick on or canned spray paint.
Chrome or other reflective tape on leading edge for protection and visibility.
Stick on film under fuse for ding protection.
Check and/or replace rudder hinges. Some use plastic hinges and tape to cover hinge gap.I've had no hinge issues.
Plug in servo connectors for easier wing installation. Or use servo extensions.
GPS or other flight logging equipment.
Thermal Scout.
Video cameras- anywhere from cheap keychain cams to Go-Pro.
FPV equipment-many have crashed with this....risky at this point.
Lawn chair with swivel platform.
Neck massager. (Find your own...tried to find a link but none would pass the family friendly rules).