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Posted by cleansurf2 | Dec 15, 2013 @ 04:55 AM | 13,638 Views
HK Buzzer 6V diode fix.

The auxillary channel HK Discovery Buzzer is my prefered choice over the in line HK Lost Plane Finder .

But, if you are NOT using a battery or UBEC supplying 5V, it may not work.
A (5 cell) 6V NiMh pack often won't work for the buzzer because the buzzer is fussy about the supply voltage, requiring Approx 5V.
As pictured, you can use two diodes in series. Most diodes drop 0.6V when run in the normal current flow. So 0.6+0.6=1.2V bringing the 6V pack down to approx 4.8V on the Buzzer circuit board. The diodes are configured cathode to anode as pictured and are inserted in line with the voltage supply wire (the middle pad that the servo lead (red) normaly goes to). It's a small circuit board so you will need a reasnably small soldering iron tip and some patients. Cathode to the circuit board, anode to the red (middle) wire.

Alternatevly (simpler), cut the red wire and solder the diodes in series with the red wire (saves having to solder direct to the board), again Cathodes to the board side, Anodes to the plug side of the red wire.

Discovery Buzzer
* Connects to a spare Rx channel and switched on/off by programing a switch on your Tx'r (Turnigy 9XR for example).
* Switch on off when you want with a rapid audio response.
* Is isolated from any control channel (one less point of failure for control.

Lost Plane Finder
* Additional point of failure as it is inserted in-line with a control channel.
* Can turn on due to using low rates (annoying).
* takes up to a minute to start alarming after you stop Tx input movements.
Posted by cleansurf2 | Apr 24, 2012 @ 04:24 AM | 18,652 Views
An independent consolidated review & info on all the Starfire versions.
I've built eight Starfire core sets now, all built different (park flier, slope and DS gliders). I currently own around 12 flying wings, no two alike, have many hundreds of slope flying hours and done in flight comparisons with other slope wings. I wanted to share some reviews and info on these relatively unknown high performance flying wings.

Thread info:
Various versions
Flying application / version choice.
Reviews / comparisons.
Video demos.
Build logs.
Recommended parts and build methods.

I'm not on the MWcores payroll, I just love building and flying a performance wing and their was very limited details available on this little gem, so I've consolidated all the essential info and links in this one thread, enjoy.

click link below to continue on with the starfire info thread
Continue to "MWcores Starfire Consolidated info" thread


Starfire insane slope speed frontside, 25 knots, Modified MWcores EPP flying wing (9 min 49 sec)

Posted by cleansurf2 | Sep 16, 2011 @ 04:38 AM | 21,492 Views
HobbyKing 9X Tx'r, (love the 9X, great quality and features for the price)

I accidentally reversed the power trying out a LIPO battery in my 9X. Now this is not as difficult as it sounds, and given that I'm an electronics Tech, somewhat embarrassing.

The 9X battery plug is the same style as a LIPO 2S charging plug, but be warned the wiring configuration is different. I made an adapter for a 3S and ended up reversing the supply voltage to the Tx'r which smoked some components.

I ended up having to replace two 5V regulators and a capacitor (one regulator was in the Tx module, details available in the links).
During repairs I also incorporated the LIPO 2S battery mod (which uses an additional resistor to trick the Tx regarding the battery monitoring voltage). Note, if you measure out and check the schematic, component mounting can be simplified as I've done.

Another option for the battery Mod is to do a er9x firmware update so you can just dial in the voltage you want the Tx'r battery to alarm at (you won't need the resistor mod then, but you will need another hardware mod to do the firmware upgrade plus you get a whole lot more options available for programing).
Note: 2S LIPO is more efficient than 3S, as the Tx'r regulates down to only 5V anyway.

LIPOs: I used two 2400 LIPOs with auto charge/dis-charge cut off (don't know for sure if this will protect the battery if Tx'r is left on, it does restrict max charge voltage).The batteries I used, will not fit side by side...Continue Reading
Posted by cleansurf2 | Sep 01, 2011 @ 04:28 AM | 17,974 Views
My first true slope plank. Took a while to dial in the CG and it's touchy compared to my other wings. But it's compact to carry and can fly nice and tight for smaller slopes. Great fun to fly and fast for it's size and weight.

Specs: Hot wire cut styro foam, PW51 airfoil 7" root & 5.5" tip, laminate and tape covering, 800mm wingspan, 200 gram AUW. Yet to try with additional ballast.

The video starts off in 8 knots, then 15 knots on a different slope. At the current weight, 10-14 knots on a high lift slope is perfect.

Scratch built slope soarer Mini plank wing (1 min 51 sec)

Posted by cleansurf2 | Aug 19, 2011 @ 01:02 AM | 18,308 Views
HK Budget EPP foam Pitts Biplane. HobbyKing Pitts EPP-CF (Build, review, demo).

Out of the box: Pretty impressive for the price, especially having the motor included. I have a 1000kva motor I'd like to try at some stage with a larger prop for better efficiency. The wings are airfoils not flat profile, which is excellent and the EPP is fairly stiff.

BUILD: Took me around 5 hours to build. Definitely need to free up the control surfaces. The 3 balsa pieces that are the vertical supports between the wings are week, advise tracing them out in case you need to replace them at some stage. Better still replace them with EPP. Build was fairly strait forward and manual was actually pretty helpful. The last thing to fit was the battery to get the CG correct. I wanted to stay light for vertical performance so used a 1000mah 3S 20C battery, gives me around 10 minutes flight time. The manuals CG location worked fine. I had to put the battery fairly forward to achieve the CG with a 1000mah.

FLIGHT REPORT: Firstly, all my experience is on flying wings (which I'm confident on). Being a Bi-plane, it needs a little bit of rudder for good turns, still learning rudder control. The standard motor and 8" prop was fine with beyond vertical performance. Very capable at slow flying. Played around with some knife edge and hover the plane is capable of both (the pilot needs practice).

OVERALL: Recommended
However Its not overly tough...Continue Reading
Posted by cleansurf2 | Jan 29, 2011 @ 05:48 PM | 21,095 Views
I bought this a couple of years ago pre-built. The build was OK but not to the standards I usually build to. This was my fastest sloper by a good margin, now matched by the Starfire (48" PW51 version). The Bat has good performance in 10-27 knots on a light build.
It is a 54" molded 2 piece EPP foam wing kit (at a bargain US$80 delivered) from Windrider. Suitable for experienced pilots only, it's fast and needs to be flown smooth, handling is more difficult than a swept combat wing, mine tip stalls easily. Modified builds can greatly improve handling and a Tx'r with exponential will greatly assist handling at speed.

First mods: I put a layer of laminate over the top, took out a little bit of the reflex in the airfoil and changed to a single fin.

Second Mods (Dec2011): The Bat is fast, but handling was not the best so I wasn't getting much use out of it, using the Starfire instead. So I did a more radical mod as the spars where weakening on the tips anyway, I clipped the wings, also replaced those horrid EPP elevons and re-balanced CG with more lead in the nose. Increasing wing loading pushing the new wind envelop to the right (14-30 knots) and roll rate is super fast and axial.
Note: This mod pushes the Bat into a more Advanced pilot range. Although handling is better (in stronger winds and DS), the role rate and wing loading is increased, so it can easily stall in lighter conditions and can struggle to pull up if the air speed drops. As well as loosing wing,...Continue Reading
Posted by cleansurf2 | Nov 06, 2010 @ 06:40 PM | 54,285 Views
You may have heard about heat activated laminate film wing covering materials (aka. New Stuff or NS).
However getting specific details about this stuff, especially working out thickness is sparce and scattered. Different countries also use different measurement definitions which is confusing.

For all my info (what it is, how to apply it, conversion factors, material info and links).
Details Here
Posted by cleansurf2 | Jul 15, 2010 @ 05:25 AM | 19,992 Views
This is my park flying wing design, they fly great. If you want a light slow fly performance wing with great handling and glide, this rocks.

Application is slow flying, park/street low level and downgraded to combat as they start to get old and trashed. This is the 6th incarnation, the last 4 have had the same wing profile with just some fuselage, covering and elevon changes. This one has laminate covering (so far so good, nice finish and stiff wing). I accidently put a little Ahedrial in the wing when applying the laminate which has made some performance issues in slow flight (nose dips when turning out of a left bank turn?) Otherwise this build is faster than my previous due to covering material and streamlined fuse. I changed the engine mount and cut the mount into the wing instead, this made for better thrust angle and now can accelerate and maintain level flight without radio input.

Performance is superb, great glide ratio, vertical performance, light weight for crashes, can slope it in light winds and fly in tight areas.

AUW 300gram, 610mah 3S, HXT 24Gram motor (1500 or 1700kva), gws 7x6 (nice and quite).
Air frame: styrofoam, 40" span, 10" root, 6" tip, sipkill airfoil, 30 degrees sweep, 2 degrees washout.
The fibreglass bumpers (from HobbyKing) protect the leading edge (I fly these wings low around trees and in my street around light poles, letter boxes, etc so the bumpers get used some times. They are removable, I adjust the battery position to adjust CG when removed.

I continue to build these, they are just so much fun, I'm happy with the current design, minus the ahedrial in this latest build.

Here is some video of it with keyring camera (cap mount and onboard)

Home built RC flying wing, Scratch built park flyer, keyring camera (2 min 49 sec)

Posted by cleansurf2 | Jul 15, 2010 @ 04:08 AM | 18,892 Views
This is the finished aircraft. I wanted to improve handling, I added the small top wing (experiment), no good. Recently modified it, stripped the tape and added additional wing sections, now a 42inch span. Fibreglass rods frm nose to wing tips are removal, used for protection for test flights. I added a carbon spar and covered in heat activated laminate, nice smooth stiff finish!
The CofG obviously needed to be moved back due to the increased wing area toward the rear. A fraction of Ahedrial accidently added when covering. about 3 degrees forward sweep on the outer wing sections.

Overall performance greatly improved. Good speed with the FWD swept wings, pitch performance improved as expected, glide greatly improved.
But something just not quite right with the handling, maybe Ahedrial or FWD sweep, no washout or just imperfection of the manual wing cuts and airframe.
The handling was not completely predictable.

I removed the front coreflute which changed the CG FWD. Flight performance and predictability improved. This hack experiment has died now, elevon broke away trailing edge of the foam, that's OK, some valuable data gained. I intend to refine this design down at some later stage to give a nice abstract looking aircraft, providing I can get good handling from the design type.
Posted by cleansurf2 | Jul 15, 2010 @ 03:38 AM | 18,857 Views
Another something different from my normal small park flying wing skratchbuilds. Styrafoam hotwire cut wings. Designed as a light weight small faster foamy (for the running gear). 610mah 3S, HXT 1500kva 24gram motor, GWS 7x6 prop. Performance was dissapointing. Once agai a long fuse/wing gave poor pitch sensativity, roll rate to high, motor tourque roll to great with the narrow wings, general handeling well below that of my usual scratch wings. The build technique was OK and I have utilised coreflute in similar ways but for battery/motor only.
Posted by cleansurf2 | Jul 15, 2010 @ 03:28 AM | 18,745 Views
Scratch built Styro foam flat profile. Goes OK. Vertical, just, with a 1050mah 3S and 1600KV 30gram brushless. Floats well for easy landing. I am not a big fan of long aircraft, it has a slower pitch sensativity due to the length of the wing/Fuse, roll is pretty fast. Other than pitch being a bit slow, flys pretty well.
Posted by cleansurf2 | May 28, 2010 @ 08:55 PM | 19,800 Views
I'm using a basic 2.4G Tx'r (US$32 + S&H from HK). Mostly because of the cheap Rx's available for it at <US$13 + S&H. This allows me to have a lot of basic planes for different conditions, applications and various atates of repair. As they get battered they get an even harder time low level etc, untill it's all over.
The only time I have ever had a glitch is when I put some lead balast on one of my gliders over where the antennas where installed, I try and set the antennas away from the CG points now where I may want to add balast.
Otherwise, a dozen operational planes on this Tx'r and no probs, recommended budget 2.4G rig. I recently got another one so I could configre for a 3D flyer setup.

The disadvantage of this model is memory loads have to be back at the PC. Not a real issue for me as I have set all my planes up the same, which does have some limmitations, as I would like to change ratios for elevator/aileron throw/mix for some planes, but I get buy fine. I even setup a airbrake on one plane using one of the Tx analouge knobs.

HK now have gone to V2 of this Tx'r, slightly cheaper, but Rx'rs are single antenna only (maybe range issues, it now has Freq hoping so hopefully that will compensate). The HK X9 now has Tx module built in and $9 2.4G 8chl Rx's, also compatable with the V2 T6 Rx's, reviews so far look good, may go this way next.

Some excellent links for the Tx'r.

T6 Tx

T6 Tx drivers etc

T6 Tx trainner switch mod

Sim Tx

Palm pilot software
Posted by cleansurf2 | May 01, 2010 @ 06:34 PM | 17,678 Views
A basic profile of my favourite hobbies past and present. And somewhere to put a picture of my latest builds when there finished, I'm always in the process of building a new RC plane and I enjoy the challenge of designing performance flying wings of various configurations.

My RC background; currently 300-400 hours on flying wings, mostly slope soaring. I have 5 kits and have scratch built about 10 various planes, mostly wings. My main scratch built wing is a styrofaom 39" on a sipkill airfoil (10"-6" chords) under 300 gram flying weight. With a small HC blue wonder brushless and 610mah 3S LIPO I get vertical performance. I fly this around my street and parks, occassional slope in light winds.

Recently (2011) I got to finally try surfing a flow rider
Flow rider & Flow Barrel, Finally got a chance to try it. (2 min 45 sec)