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Posted by karl k | Jun 23, 2013 @ 06:03 PM | 15,555 Views
I managed to come home yesterday with no flying helis.

On Tuesday, I had lost orientation and put my Blade 450x in on it's side, so that one was out. Picked up needed parts from Norburn, my LHS.

Yesterday, I caught the edge of the plywood we had been landing on with the tail of my Protos 500. That ripped apart the tail and shredded the tail belt. I'll have to get some parts on order for that.

There was also an in flight failure with my Century Radikal G30. The nearest I can figure is that the swash moved out of the sweet zone for the swash drivers integral to the head block. This caused them to pop off and left the inner swash with no phasing guidance. The heli made some interesting noises and went in nose first. Parts will need to be ordered for this as well.

Century Radikal G30 v1 in flight failure (2 min 59 sec)

Sit Rep of my heli fleet:
G30 - down and needs parts
E640 - rekit
Swift NX - flying condition, but saving it for Crash Hancock
Protos 500 - Needs tail rebuild
Blade 450x - Almost finished rebuild
130x - flying condition
mCPx - flying condition

It looks like I'll be flying planks until my parts get ordered and arrive. I just picked up a Great Planes U Can Do 60 used on Saturday morning, so I have some fettling to do with that to get it in shape to try out at the field.

If it wasn't fun, I wouldn't be doing this.
Posted by karl k | Jun 16, 2013 @ 07:54 PM | 15,874 Views
Had some "interesting" flying today.

Shawn brought out his FMS Corsair to be shot down with paintball "markers". He had me fly it so that he could man a paintball station. The elevator servo would not centre properly, so low passes looked more like a dolphin jumping next to Jaques Cousteau's research vessel. On the first low pass after trimming in the plane, it dove for the ground so I pulled back and the left wing spar cracked in half!! This made for an interesting landing. After repairing the wing, I flew the brave Corsair again. This time I flew slower so the gunners had an easier time to hit the plane. After the CA repair to the wing, the left landing gear got stuck in the up position. A belly landing in the dirt was the only dignified thing to do.

With all the damage the plane took from paintballs, I am amazed that it looks like it will fly again.

Last flight of the day with the Radikal G30 (need to think of a nickname for this beast: Any suggestions?), I had the engine die in the middle of a large loop. This is where the auto practice paid off. I centred the collective stick and got the heli upright, fed in negative pitch and brought it toward the ground. After flaring with cyclic, I began to reduce negative pitch until it was close to the ground. I then added increasing positive pitch until it touched down unscathed. Times like these are where all the auto practice pays off.

The cause of this engine failure has been narrowed down to the clunk line coming off in the tank.

Videos from the day will be uploaded shortly.

Edit: Video did not turn out. Sorry, guys
Posted by karl k | Jun 16, 2013 @ 03:41 PM | 15,552 Views
Had a short flying session tuning the SK-540 on the Protos trying to get rid of the elevator nodding during cyclic stops. I found out that there's a new firmware that is supposed to get rid of that, so I updated the unit after getting home. Will try it out on Sunday.

Did the maiden flight on the Dynam A-10 that Ryan had given to me. Something was up with the electronics that caused it to not run both fans properly. I didn't bother trying it before re-soldering all the power connections, but it works perfectly now.

Dynam A-10 maiden flight (5 min 19 sec)

I finally saw Ron flying his NX4. Also happened to be the first crash on the heli.

Ron flies the NX4 until it crashes (3 min 20 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by karl k | Jun 16, 2013 @ 03:35 PM | 15,499 Views
Snuck in a few flights after work on Friday with the G30. The tune is starting to get really close now. That lower gearing works so sweetly with this motor and 1600 rpm headspeed. There's a lot of flying left to break in the engine still.
Posted by karl k | Jun 10, 2013 @ 08:29 AM | 15,691 Views
Yesterday was awesome! I got the G30 in the air and had some awesome guests on the podcast.

The G30 is flying better than ever now. Had a slight issue on the first flight, though. The cheap carbon tail blades that I had been running blew apart in flight and I had to auto down to the ground. At my regular flying field this would not have been an issue, but I was at another spot that is mostly rough ground and small bushes. I ended up half way in a bush and broke one of my landing gear legs. Not to be deterred, I used some CA and zip ties to repair the gear and got another 3 flights on for 45 minutes of flight time.

On the CrashCast, we had local flyer Geoff Dryer on to talk about his 50% Cub. We talked about the challenges of building such a large plane and about cutting it in half. We had Steve (Vintauri) on to talk about his visit to SIG headquarters as well. We also gave away some prizes with the help of Laine (lmopar69). I also mentioned the new photos up on Team Tracon's website.
Next week will be a multirotor show with special guest again!

All in all, a great day in RC for me.
Posted by karl k | Jun 08, 2013 @ 02:52 PM | 15,703 Views
Heading to my LHS to pick up electronic ignition parts for my Radikal G30. I've been putting off getting this heli back into the air for a while. One might even say that it has been put in the "naughty corner". After seeing the FBL unit resetting from what appears to be interference from the magneto ignition, I thought it wise to not fly it until I get it sorted.

I decided to just order a complete EI conversion for the engine in hopes that this will fix my issues as the entire high voltage circuit will be encased in shielding material that is bonded to ground.
Posted by karl k | Jun 08, 2013 @ 08:17 AM | 15,634 Views
For all those that love float planes, Beverly at Team Tracon has once again captured amazing photos from our local event. I encourage everyone to have a peek at them over at http://www.teamtracon.com


Posted by karl k | Jun 04, 2013 @ 09:52 PM | 15,777 Views
I was out and about running errands with my wife and "happened" to have a couple helis in the truck. She had never been to the new club I joined, so we stopped by the Ridge Flyers field in Delta to put in a few flights. Managed to get in 5 flights there and she managed to get sunburned.

Later on, I went to the renegade field and put in another 8 flights. Got to fly an X7 in trade for a flight on my Protos, so of course I accepted the offer! It flies nice, but I don't think I would buy a 700 size electric. I do need to get my gasser going, though. I like this size of heli.
Posted by karl k | Jun 02, 2013 @ 11:59 PM | 16,094 Views
Got another 11 flights in today before the podcast recording.

The Blade 450 now has an ESC with a good governor and active freewheeling. What this means for me is the ability to run something other than a 100% throttle curve without bogging. My curves are set at 50%, 65%, and 80%. The 50% headspeed is scary slow. I tried some gentle half piro flips way up high. Amazingly enough, the heli handled really well.

I saw a lot of guys I haven't seen in a while since taking a break from helis.
John showed up with his Protos and we exchanged tips specific to the heli.
Ron was there with his Trex 450 and mCPx BL. He flies so aggressively that I think the heli will break up mid flight.
A new face to me, Osmond, was there with a partially built Blade 550x.
Chris was flying his 300x and Trex 450, but spent a lot of time building on Osmond's 550x. I wouldn't be surprised if they got it flying before the evening was done.
Nav had his Bergen gasser there. He's at the tail in stage, but looks like he will progress quickly with guidance from the crew here.
Ryan showed up with the Trex 550 and the ALZRC 450 Goblin look a like. The fit of the canopy was pretty iffy. I don't know if I would buy one of these personally. Too heavy for my liking.
Shawn was there with his Gauis, the X5 and the X7.
A new guy showed up, but I can't remember his name. The other guys were getting his clone 450 sorted out as I was leaving.

Looking back at the list of guys there, it was amazing that I got 11 flights with only one flight station.

PS. I made sure to use sunscreen this time...
Posted by karl k | Jun 02, 2013 @ 11:04 AM | 15,573 Views
I've decided to give this blog thing a shot to see how I like it.
Here goes nothing!!

So I made it a goal publicly on the CrashCast that I hoped to be able to do piro flips by the end of the year. I haven't really done much to work towards that goal and my 2 month hiatus from helis while they were broken and in the penalty box didn't help my advancement at all. It was time to do something about that.

During this past week I worked on half piro flips on the sim to try and get some muscle memory. This took place over two sim sessions of under ten minutes each. I have been finding that the shorter sim sessions are more productive.

Friday I gave it a shot in real life. These went much better than expected. Ugly, but better than expected. After a few flights of practice, I was getting so that I could get with the flow and stop the piro and flip right where I needed to be so that the motion stops exactly in a inverted tail in hover when starting from tail in upright.

I even tried the full piro flips and managed to have some reasonable looking attempts. Just need more negative pitch timed properly to not loose too much height.

Over the course of 14 flights with the Protos and B450x that afternoon, I made sure to end each flight with an autorotation. Stay tuned with more to come.