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Posted by PeterVRC | Aug 06, 2018 @ 05:47 PM | 7,442 Views
It was TIME to 3D print an RC Model aircraft......

I had been using 3D printers for many years and had seen bits and pieces (snippets) of how the world of 3D printing Aircraft was going. Nothing looked too great or promising in terms of producing a DECENT RC Model that would have everything doe well, and LAST. They were being designed and made 'too marginal', in their aims to save as much weight as possible. Let alone the 'entire modeling world' being so scared of WEIGHT and the ROBUSTNESS required to produce a truly "Fit for purpose" aircraft. The vast majority are 'marginal' and the weight phobia abounding everywhere means they fly like 'feathers' or 'bits of paper int he wind', not truly 'linear with mass and inertias as per full scale aircraft have and do.
So the WEIGHT of a 3D Printed aircraft was not worrying me, it was the actual construction details that would be needed to form a "Fit for purpose" aircraft, and THEN remain within a weight range restriction - even when that is WAY heavier than everyone else is doing in 3D printed aircraft.
In foam models, they are all way too light as they come.... well... in recent years the manufacturers ARE FINALLY putting more 'good stuff' into them, and not worrying about weight as much. Yet they are still not at a point of truly Fit For Purpose and robust etc. But you can buy a foam model (Kit or PNF) and ADD all that you need to make it fully Fit For Purpose (reliable, strong, lasting!), and still not end...Continue Reading
Posted by PeterVRC | Jun 26, 2018 @ 05:31 AM | 9,260 Views
I have made pretty good use of 3D printers and have stepped from the first Print-Rite 3D Printer I had, on to the Geeetech I3 which had more good features and better results, and now onto a Tevo Tornado which really stands out as a leap ahead in 3D Printing!!!

Firstly, the Tornado is (seemingly) a clone of the Creavity CR10 which was already well known as a great advance in cheap/home 3D Printers. Tevo just 'copied' but also improved some aspects. There are varying reviews on it, of which many say it is great.... and many say it is CRAP!!!
I am very technical... and have quite a bit of engineering knowledge.... rest aassured the Tevo Tornado is a GREAT 3D printer!!! All the nay-sayers are either morons, OR PAID to give them a bad name!

You may as well read about the CR10's..... to get all the basic info about what it is, and what is good/great about it.... then add on the Tevo improvements.
Note that they BOTH have some shortfalls and a lot of room for user 'upgrades', but you could also use them just as they come and get fantastic results still anyway!

But the mods/upgrades just make it even better... to use... and the 3D Printed outputs.

Being a 'clone' the Tornado tends to be about AU$50 lower in price than a CR10.... and then even has those better aspects too.
The biggest plus is a 240v heated bed. Not 12v... not 24v... but 240v, which means it has access to a lot of power and thus can heat up FAST. Heating the bed on a 3D printer is usually the slowest part, and...Continue Reading
Posted by PeterVRC | Feb 22, 2018 @ 08:32 AM | 10,398 Views
Another FlyFly Mig-29 Fulcrum kit?? When the first one is not even completed!!??
Well Hobbyking had some on sale and.....

I decided - at that time - that I would make one as 'full house' - the original No.1 one. And then this second one as a simple Taileron only hand/bungee launcher. Mainly because operating off a grass field makes it much harder to ROG, plus very punishing on landing gear.
So for this one, it is Tailerons only..... but I will add landing gear also(!!), to only be used for LANDING. Take-offs will be bungee or hand-launch, depending on the final AUW. I will use a FRsky S8R Flight-Controller RX to allow TX/hands free launching too, and thus I will be able to do two handed launches to assure it is a good and fast/strong launch!

For the Landing Gear, it will be the Freewing Su-35 nose gear, which has a trailing link suspension action, and some Hobbyking trailing link main gear oleo/wheels.... which are all very useful on grass. It will only need the 'Medium' sized Retract units, with 4mm on all oleos. Mediums are fine for hard runways too, but you really want the Large size retracts, with 5mm pins, if operating from grass. Which will be what the No.1 Mig-29 gets.

I will add a wing spar (of course!).
I MIGHT even WBPU/Glass it. That can be the last thing done... or not done... once I know the AUW region it is headed for. I want to keep it under 3.0Kg.

It will use my Ex-Su-35 HET2W30 (2200kv) driven Wemo Evo's, on 7S as per the Su-35 used. But...Continue Reading
Posted by PeterVRC | Nov 20, 2017 @ 07:46 PM | 8,939 Views
I own a LOT of chargers. 13...
From the starting days of the 50W/5A "4 button" chargers, to the next levels of 150W/10A... 200W/7A... (still "4 button" type)... and then onto the LEMON Radiolink CP620 750W/30A (and has 6A balancing!!!) capable!!

50W chargers can't charge many battery capacities very fast at all....

Some Charger Info:
The Watts rating sets the MAXIMUM POWER the charger can pass. But it also has a Voltage maximum and a Current (Amps) maximum.
So they will most often list Voltage as "2S to 6S" etc (2S to 8S). So then you know how many cells it can charge at most.
And they will list the maximum Current it can pass. eg say 5 Amps.
"Up to 6S at 50W/5A"

Then for any given cell count, thus Voltage, you can derive what it could charge that battery at the most.
So let's use 6S to make it tough for the charger (because it is the highest Voltage it can do).... 6S peak voltage is 6 x 4.2v = 25.2v
To see what maximum Current is POSSIBLE at that Voltage, divide the POWER by the Voltage. 50W / 25.2v = 1.98 Amps
This is because no matter what, the POWER is the top limit of the charger.

There are the THREE limits - Voltage, Current and Power... and NONE can be exceeded. (eg not even just one). The charger itself will stop at its limits.
So the MOST you could feed into a 6S battery with a 50W charger is 1.98Amps....
If it was a 2200mAH battery then that 1.98A max is almost 1C (0.9C). If it was a 5000mAH battery then it is 0.4 C...Continue Reading
Posted by PeterVRC | Nov 18, 2017 @ 08:32 AM | 9,175 Views
I bought a new HSD Viperjet, but as a KIT. That ended up being quite a DUMB idea and way to do it! Buying the Kit was AUD$200 less, but when I found out what it DOES NOT come with it showed how that "$200" was actually worth AUD$400 in value! Plus it took 8 hrs or more to transfer over all the parts that it needed!! So it 'cost' money and TIME too! In the PNF I could have used the EDF, ESC and Retracts for another aircraft and those are most of that $400 value. And not have had to transfer anything!
Boo !!!

I set it up with the 8S Jetfan again, and did the all mods to fit that and its batteries. (extended battery tray etc).

I took it out today for its Maiden and flew just like the first one - of course.
One thing I did different was coat it in SATIN WBPU, instead of Matt. The Matt comes out a Semi-Gloss really.... and the Satin comes out a High Gloss! So shiny! It looks like it is a composite (fiberglass) aircraft!! And ready to RACE !!

On the maiden flight I flew it at a 'brisk cruise' Airspeed for the most, with a handful of WOT climbs, loops, 'race past' cases.
The Flight Time was 7 minutes and 30 Seconds!!!
That is pretty awesome for a 90mm EDF... and flying quite fast! Plus with that bunch of WOT sections in it.
The Turnigy graphenes came down ambient/cool... and 3.70v per cell. After pretty well dead on 4000mAH used.

The flight was mainly at 30Amps (900W) down to 20Amps (600W) for more of it. With the 2500W+ WOT runs here and there.

...Continue Reading
Posted by PeterVRC | Nov 09, 2017 @ 08:42 AM | 8,933 Views
I 'half forgot' that I also have the FlyFly 90mm Hawker Hunter to build up. I got it many months ago but just stored it away.
This jet I will build for 6S and as a bungee launcher.
I am changing the bungee launch FlyFly Mirage to a HSD 6S EDF setup taken from the HSD 6S Viperjet PNF and I will use the same EDF combo for the Hawker Hunter - just unbolt and easily move it from jet to jet. Not the ESC... just the 6S EDF.

I have the "Swiss Green" scheme, which looks quite nice - and will 'pop' a lot more when coated in WBPU.
1112mm Wingspan, but 1507mm long. As per most modern jets are longer than their Wingspan.

I am considering adding Landing Gear, just to use for landings. Though it will mean it could be flown off a hard runway also. I like the look of the LG RadarGuy used on his Swiss 30 Jahre (anniversary) version in the pics below!
I don't 'mind' seeing a jet take off from a bungee dolly, even though it is nowhere near as good as a ROG take-off, but it at least still takes the path that it would on LG anyway. But I don't like landing on the underside (when no LG) and wearing that out.
I still have some more things to think about the Hunter before I start it anyway.....
For one thing, I am considering adding flaps - split as per full scale. Which is another reason that LG would then be very useful too.

Posted by PeterVRC | Nov 08, 2017 @ 10:22 PM | 11,893 Views
Another jet.... a bit soon, but I will see what order it can sneak into amongst the others to do.

I had been aiming to get ALL FlyFly jets eventually, plus had my eye on the Hawk for a long time now. So today I decided to get it and see when I will build it.
After a lot of pondering over the color scheme to get, I ordered the all BLUE version. But within 20 minutes I changed my mind and altered it to the 2012 (?) Anniversary Scheme one (Black, Red, White, Blue). I decided that it is pretty unique and narrowly 'wins' over all the plainer schemes.

1365mm Wingspan and 1465mm in length - it is fairly big, so its Scale is relatively 'large' - and that means it has 'substance/volume' seeing it is closer to the full scale. (than a smaller scale - or some large real aircraft with this scale model dimensions).

I will make it 'full house', with Flaps, Retracts, nose gear doors and use 8S. Likely a HET/Jetfan 1500kv or 1600kv setup.
From all that I have read and see about it, this is a very nice jet and worthy of making it up as a 'quality' RC model. (certainly NOT just as FlyFly supply it!!!)

Posted by PeterVRC | Nov 06, 2017 @ 09:11 AM | 9,057 Views
Time for a new jet.... but why? So many to finish, and so many to fly already!

1) It is big
2) It is very cheap (on sale)

I always had liked my 70mm Panther and the T-33 is quite a similar aircraft, but this time at more of a 105/120mm EDF size! BIG.
Even though it also fits - and comes with - a 90mm EDF setup.

I was 'worried' about RC Lander.... as their stuff tends to be very OLD Generation and fairly poorly 'executed'. And once again, it was exactly that... oh well.

HobbyKing had it on sale for AUD$520 and it would cost a fair way towards that for the EDF and ESC it comes with.
Plus reviews on it were not that bad.
RC Lander stuff can end up LOOKING pretty good, but they are still very 'rough' made models. And seeing pics of it looked good, and flying reports were very good, I decided it would be a 'good idea'.

Once I got the jet I found it was the 'latest' iteration/version of it. Which had all the upgrades added over the years, plus a 12 Blade Dr Mad Thrust (RC Lander) 1000KV 10S 4500Watt EDF. And a ZTW Gecko 150A HV ESC. So those were great to get with it, and made it excellent value!
The retracts are BIG and robust too, so they are worth quite a lot of $.

One nuisance is that it uses Wire Pull-Pull steering. And it is a really bad setup! Not that ANY wire Pull-Pull setup is any good!
So that will need to be modded into a PUSHROD steering system!

The paintwork is very good! A bit dodgy in some areas, but overall very good. More so for all TOP/SIDE surfaces - which the foam finish is also excellent for all of those. But quite lacking on the UNDERSIDE of the wing!

Posted by PeterVRC | Feb 16, 2017 @ 05:18 PM | 12,886 Views
Time for a new plane....
Seeing my 800mm Me-109 had a 'catastrophic incident' I decided to replace it with a Durafly EFXtra Racer, seeing that is a bit larger and can carry FPV with more weight leeway - or so I thought anyway.
Mind you I repaired the Me-109 also.... hmmm. Well I did still need a Pylon Racer....

This is once again a 'new generation foamie' where they have added lots of plastic stuff and strengthening so that it is not just an almost all foam model aircraft that is weak and flexy etc.
But this all comes at a cost of WEIGHT!

It is quite costly (AU$210) for its size, but that is because it is the newer generation and more 'premium' quality, and also with higher than typical specs for the Power and RC system stuff. So I guess it is 'worth' what it costs, in relative terms to other RC models.

The construction and finish is excellent - it seems to be another "HSD" model, which I am guessing by the many ways things have been done as per they do for their own models.

I also comes with an "FPV Module" that replaces the battery hatch cover to then be an FPV setup. Too bad it LOOKS like an abortion gone wrong!! So ugly... I refuse to even consider using it!

Once all assembled, I consider it HEAVY!! The AUW (unmeasured for now) is the weight that it should really be WITH a battery. It feels close to just right without the battery.... hmm. But that is the cost of having all those 'extras' that make it a strong, 'well built' model....Continue Reading
Posted by PeterVRC | Jan 13, 2017 @ 08:37 PM | 11,497 Views
I decided I should set up a plane to make use of a Flight Controller using more of its capabilities. Things very few people ever do....

In the "Angle Mode" of control - which will be '2D' for a, EagleTree Guardian, or 'SBAL' for a HobbyEagle A3super - you get to set precise aircraft Angles... Attitudes.
To command an Angle you send an RC command signal, just as you always do BUT they are acted on in a different way than a 'plain' Rate Mode form of aircraft control. Basically the -100,0,+100 range is taken as an ANGLE you want.... from -ve, through zero angle, to +ve. eg Full Left Roll Stick means "Bank left (minus) to 45deg", and vice-versa for right, and ZERO degrees at centre stick. Centre stick is taken as a command that you want NO Angle... zero degrees.
The same functions apply to Pitch.
Typically Rudder is not controlled in this mode of control as it is only of use to control angles for Roll and Pitch as they are what can set a plane to fly LEVEL. The units do not know compass directions, and they do not know anything about the wind/airflows, so they "can't" make sure the Rudder heads you in the right direction anyway.

So what uses can we make of these Flight Controllers, apart from the simplistic use of "Both Pitch and Roll Sticks centered means we want 0deg on those two axis, thus it will AUTOMATICALLY LEVEL and aircraft for you" = Self-Level, Sef-Balance, Recovery Mode etc.

I am going to use a Tail Dragger as the test example, because they add an extra dimension of difficulty compared to tricycle gear aircraft.....
Specifically my Avios 1200mm Sea Fury Camo version will be used.

I will add the OpenTX setup details, with Pictures, as I set mine up.....
Posted by PeterVRC | Oct 01, 2016 @ 09:23 PM | 13,648 Views
I thought I will list my favorite method of bungee launching aircraft.
There are a few ways people bungee launch models:

1) Use a ramp
2) From the ground
3) From a dolly

It seemed that very few people use a Bungee Dolly method. Ramps lead the way by far, followed by just straight off the ground.

Ramps work ok, but you do need to 'make one' and cart those pieces around - assemble - disassemble....
Because the plane leaves the ramp some distance off the ground it leaves more room for 'heading down', whether with Wings Level, or Wings Angled into a cart-wheel!
The plane also has to 'drag' along the ramp rails - the wings usually - so they can wear, or things could catch too. eg control horns etc.

From the ground is the easiest - you don't need to take much stuff at all. Just the main bungee part.....
But dragging a plane across the ground is not going to be great for its underside - though you do have to LAND on the underside too. But at least only landing means HALF the wear and tear! lol.

After I thought about it a lot I decided that a Bungee DOLLY was the only way to do this in an acceptable and very safe manner!!

1) The plane does not get dragged on the ground - as per ground bungee.

2) The lift-off is exactly like a take-off from landing gear. Far more gradual (angles etc) and even looks like a plane taking off from a runway! Not a plane 'thrown into the air' and 'must fly' - as per from a ramp.

3) There is no 'dragging' - the plane lifts off UPWARDS off the dolly at a shallow Angle of Attack (as per a normal runway take-off), which means a much more 'docile' and 'slow' move into whatever problem state it might head into due to offset trims etc.

So that was that... the Dolly method wins hands down!

Posted by PeterVRC | Sep 10, 2016 @ 08:52 AM | 14,960 Views
I always wanted a Viper Jet....

Something made me decide to get one. But there are a FEW choices you could make!
At least:
1) HobbyKing Viper Jet 90mm
2) Taft Hobby Viper jet 90mm
3) HSD Viper Jet 90mm

The HK one is a composite, quite heavy and thus the costs of having that weight. Tip Stall potentials, and just needs more space to fly around in really.
The Taft Hobby is 1450mm span, a bit bigger than the HSD 1400mm span. But they are essentially the same design really - by the same foamie designer.
The HSD costs more!! But the HSD is also the newer of the pair, and has some improvements that add up to the higher cost.

Eeeny, Meeeny, Miny.... (no Mo)
The HK one was off the list quick smart. But the Taft and HSD were neck and neck!
I chose the Taft Hobby one as it costs less, and the main issues with it are the PNF stuff, so I would get the KIT and put in 'good' stuff!
I ordered that.... THEN saw something I had missed....
The Taft uses 'straight' oleos, and the HSD has Trailing link oloes - much better for GRASS use! WAY better!
Plus the HSD uses a top mounted cheater duct, and the Taft an underside one. Again, the HSD is better for GRASS use!
The HSD is also better finished - better painted, better decals...

So I changed the order to the HSD kit.... AUD$70 more... the extra benefits of it were well worth that really.

THEN after thinking about the KIT, with NO servos, NO Fan, NO motor, NO ESC...which I did not want anyway... BUT for "just...Continue Reading
Posted by PeterVRC | Sep 10, 2016 @ 08:02 AM | 12,100 Views
Wow, this is an OLD jet of mine! I think I bought it as a kit 5 years ago, but never finished building it! Or it might have even been a PNF, with a pathetic 64mm 3S setup.... as per my F-18 had been.

When I got it I started building it up, but seeing the F-18 was anemicly powered I decided to change the 64mm fan to a 70mm CS10 setup. Plus add retractable landing gear.
This delayed things so much, and caused so many pauses "to think how to do things" that I lost interest, but still did a BIT now and then.... never finishing it.
A few weeks ago I decided to get it out and finish it!

It is a very old generation foam model... one of the very early designs. In foam terms that is still ok, but it is a very basic foamie jet.
I don't think you can even find/buy them anymore, but there are other better F-15's around now anyway!

Posted by PeterVRC | Jun 22, 2016 @ 08:56 PM | 13,809 Views
Did I need another 3D printer????
Hmmm, not really.....

The Printrite DIY printer is a bit large overall. It also needs a fair few additions to make it truly great, which cost money! And maybe you could buy something WITH all those things already.... maybe even for less total cost!!??
So what started as just looking around at things, became a BUYING of another 3D Printer.

What is good, or better about the Geeetech I3 ProB?

1) Only AUD $329 delivered to the door! Very prompt delivery too! just days.

2) Comes with a heated bed and a glass bed for that too.

3) A built in Power Supply, so you have a nice totally self contained printer!

4) The LCD control panel, to allow stand-alone control and printing.

5) A robust acrylic frame, forming a quite compact unit, with the same printing area/volume of the PrintriteDIY anyway.

6) The MK8 printhead setup.

So all in all that sound GREAT!!
Lower cost than the PrintriteDIY and you get quite a bit MORE!!

Well, it sounded that way.... and sort of does end up that way I guess.... just not as great as it all sounded....

Posted by PeterVRC | Apr 19, 2016 @ 03:31 AM | 13,807 Views
It HAD to happen.... two weeks AFTER buying the Cloud Surfer the Powerzone2600 (my first choice) was on Sale again!
I decided to get one, and I will assess those two aircraft to decide which one is truly best to use... and sell the other.

But I am pretty sure the PZ2600 will be a clear winner!!
More Wing Area... MUCH larger internal space.... Fore and Aft wheels... and a more suited Wing mounting system, thus MODS will be far more minimal!
And it can be configured with C-Tail and T-Tail formats.

The Canopy/Cockpit portion does look a bit goofy.... but I am used to it now....

Posted by PeterVRC | Apr 04, 2016 @ 06:41 PM | 14,694 Views
Yes, I have a Bixler 2 (the second one), but I wanted a larger form of the same aircraft type to set up for longer range FPV.
I was going to get the PowerZone 2600 - it was the easily leading first choice - but it costs a "lot" (AUD $300 with shipping), and when the Cloud Surfer came in at AUD $118 including shipping, well that slaughtered the value stakes! I really wanted the PZ2600, but at that huge price difference it just did not add up. Though the PZ2600 was about AUD $170 on the last sale.... and that COULD come around again.... one day.....

The PZ2600 has a lot more internal room, but the Cloud Surfer has enough. The CS also has wider chord wings so I would say the total lift amount would probably come close the PZ2600 which has a narrower wing chord.
So anyway, the Cloud Surfer "won the contract"....

Posted by PeterVRC | Mar 20, 2016 @ 01:21 AM | 15,238 Views
With the Demise of the PT-17 I pondered what to do about having a Biplane....
Another UniqueModels PT-17, seeing it is a beautiful and well made (almost totally) plane?
Or something else?
The Dynam Waco was the leading choice in scale terms. But I was also thinking about Aerobatics and a STRONG bi-plane to cope with those!

I went to Hobbyzone (Victoria, Australia) to look over the Dynam choices....
The Waco, The Pitts Model S12 and the Devil 3D.
I was surprised to find they use alloy and carbon fiber strut systems = GREAT! When I checked them over I found them to be very strong - exactly what I needed/wanted!
So which one to get???

The Waco looks the best. Its "1930's nostalgic look".
The Devil 3D looks a bit too 'clinical' and modern. Plus was known to be a bit more twitchy and easier to stall in aerobatics.
The Pitts Model S12 Python looked a bit 'plain' but has the best credentials for aerobatics.... and it still does look quite good too.

The Waco out of stock.... hmmm.... but I could WAIT until they arrived....
With its scale sized, smallish, Ailerons they would need to be modded to be larger so that it could do better aerobatics - not a hard thing to do at all, but it does mean more TIME to get it going.

The Pitts Model S12 is really MEANT to be an aerobatic aircraft anyway.... so the real issue was ME, and altering my mindset from wanting a scale type OLDER biplane, to a more modern scale biplane!
So I accepted that and got the Pitts!!

Posted by PeterVRC | Feb 28, 2016 @ 07:19 AM | 13,270 Views
I "needed" a 3D specific plane....

Unfortunately I made a poor choice!!

The Bravado is to costly normally! Not worth it. But it was on special for $137, down from $197, so that sucked me in.
Before buying it i read the forums info about it, and read reviews, and watched videos... as I always do for aircraft I might/will buy. And there were reports of ISSUES, as usual, and the reviews suggested it was more a half/half 3D and pattern aircraft - and not overly good at either task! But all other options cost a fair bit more, so I got the Bravado...
Now I wish I had not.......

Posted by PeterVRC | Feb 28, 2016 @ 06:49 AM | 13,303 Views
Another DC-3/C-47 !!...???
As much as my Dynam DC-3 has turned out really great, I always saw the Hobbyking version as 'better'. Seeing it is a bit bigger, but also has Split Flaps, Retracts and various other 'better' things.
But when the KIT version was on special for AUD$99 with Free Shipping, well that made it a very good buy!

When I got the plane and looked over what it had and was, I was very surprised at all the great design methods, and all the detail it has! WAY more than the Dynam... it makes the Dynam look like the "2009 toy model aeroplane" that it is. Chalk and Cheese!

I had got the Dynam DC-3 on special also, I think for $163 for the PNF with shipping.
I bought all the HK DC-3 extra parts (motors, retracts, servos, etc) for approx $100. This makes the HK DC-3 close to $200 all up. So for the $37 more I will end up with a FAR, far, better DC-3!!!

But if you paid the normal "full" prices, then they are more like $240 and $435 with shipping. So then you are paying quite a lot more, for the lot more the HK DC-3 has. I would never pay that much for it!!

Posted by PeterVRC | Dec 28, 2015 @ 06:54 AM | 13,665 Views
When Hobbyking/"Avios" made the Hawker Sea Fury they decided to make up a warbird camo version, but also the modern day modified Reno Racer version that is named "Riff Raff".
Seeing they were all on "Super Special" during the sales, I got one of the Riff Raff versions also!
It is quite a different looking plane.... basically very racey looking, lol.