theKM's blog View Details
Posted by theKM | Apr 02, 2016 @ 09:54 PM | 33,156 Views
Have been through a bunch of revisions on improving hatcams, tweaks, new cameras, mounts, improving the hat hold, etc. Previous post about hatcams can be found here that had most of the important particulars about what's needed for a nice rig...

The new rig is mostly about refinement. Previous rig was great, but platform was larger than it needed to be, wasn't able to adjust angles and positions for a better fit, and the hat itself was beginning to fall apart. So build objectives...
- platform just big enough to secure the camera
- easily adjustable platform angle to fine tune elevation
- reticle/crosshairs that can be adjusted without falling apart
- removable reticle
- hidden wires and regulator/BEC for camera power

...not to mention an updated camera (60 fps at 1080p, wireless app that will help calibrate the hatcam nicely, etc etc) that is more capable while also being a little lighter.

Pics of process and results...
(If viewing this on the Blog feed, there's more photos to be seen by clicking on "Continue Reading")...Continue Reading
Posted by theKM | Apr 22, 2014 @ 11:56 AM | 308,873 Views
Playing with sound packs for the transmitter, now updated with a bunch of new sounds and index of files. Updated the sound packs with the latest requests (including tweaking some of the files that some highly particular people pointed out as having little errant clicks in there and such).

These also have better indexes; the big lists, especially when sorted alphabetical, were not all that quick to make use of. So I split them up by purpose/general-area-of-interest... control surfaces, equipment on the model, soaring/heli, etc. When you open the lists, you'll get the idea. These indexes are there as an excel spreadsheet, an image of the lists (put it on your phone and pinch-zoom your way to happiness), and text files that you can open up on the transmitter itself (go to the SD browsing screen, get into the SOUNDS directory (assuming you copied them in with the rest of the files) select and view them from there).

Rather than continue with small zips, just rolled them into complete sound packs. copy them into your SD card and they're good to go. These are formatted for OpenTx, but with 300+ sounds, they for sure would be usable in other systems.

UPDATE 2014/07/09: now with sounds that OpenTx2.0 is expecting, and a few more requests

Full sound pack (includes the "fun" sounds like "snafu", etc)...
theKM_opentxTaranis_soundPackFull_amber_20140709.z ip

Sound pack minus the fun list...

...transmitter much easier on the ears now.
Posted by theKM | Nov 29, 2013 @ 01:51 AM | 40,374 Views
My FWIW post about my attitude toward switches:

Everything about trying to make something reliable or fault tolerant is about just answering the voices in your head. From switches to redundant receivers. But for switches, some guys don't use switches at all because it's an extra failure point. I used to not use switches also until these nice looking shunt switches came out.

What makes me nervous about other switches is that all switches have a low max sustainable current, including Badger and Wolverine switches. For switches trusted in planes larger than 100cc, it's surprisingly low. They may be fine, but I have measured the current draw in my own 50cc planes to substantially spike over 20amps. Connect an EagleTree logger into your flight system, set it to log at a fast rate, and then be rather surprised by the current draws (watch the spikes in snap maneuvers, pretty scary). So for me, I have a personally hard time putting something in the train of power delivery that can't handle all the load all the time.

Shunts solve this for me because the connector that it is based on can handle all the power delivery that could ever be used, spiked or otherwise... when I have used Deans myself on main motor supply of 3+kw electric planes, other's have used them on 10's of kilowatt setups... the voices have zero concern about the power handling of the flight system.

Accidental unplugging... Deans have a reputation for being tough to pull apart. I don't think they're...Continue Reading
Posted by theKM | Nov 26, 2011 @ 05:08 PM | 46,357 Views
a "fwiw" post, that once and for all has everything I've found out about working with hatcams. This is a secret for addicts only, and should only be used to film 3dhs planes

1) forget helmets, they suck (was my first hatcam attempt). hats fit tighter, more comfy, and good for it all. Don't use elastic strap hats, needs to be something you can adjust the tightness and have it stay.
2) it needs a firm mount... the biggest gain is simply adding a nice firm mount to a hat. My first usable hatcam simply screwed plywood to the hat visor. Worked pretty well. My latest rig I changed wood for some shaped fiberglass. You can get bolts from the hardware store that match the tripod mount on the camera.
3) camera needs repeatable positioning... cover the bottom of the camera with press-n-seal, mount camera to hat, then smoosh Mighty Putty or equivalent around the corners of the base of the camera. When it dries, remove camera and press-n-seal, what you're left with is a camera mount that the camera will only seat in the one position.
4) reticle... drop a single piece of wire straight down from the end of the cap. in your vision this doubles up, nicely framing horizontally for the sides of the frame. A cross bar will take adjustment, but those will help aim vertically (and is actually most important... if I'm out of frame at all it's on the vertical axis). Will take some practice and testing to aim the horizontal bars on the reticle, and also to get used to it being...Continue Reading
Posted by theKM | Dec 07, 2009 @ 10:10 PM | 51,128 Views
...wanted to update a post on my blog to list my sponsors. I joined team 3DHobbyShop some time ago, I now work for them as a product developer, and outside of that some high quality brands are supporting my RC antics of which I'm truly appreciative. Some people want to know what brands are behind me so they can regard my posts as biased or whatever... but, whatever. I was a customer of these products long before I was a member of their team... I take a serious attitude toward providing advice and recommendations. All efforts towards helping people enjoy the hobby can be destroyed with a single bad connector or faulty servo. To this degree I make sure that my recommendations are based on genuine personal experience.

People should be able to buy products with the assurance of a rewarding experience. Life is too short to play with un-fun toys. For a rewarding experience I heartily recommend these brands...

Posted by theKM | Feb 12, 2009 @ 09:52 PM | 53,285 Views
...'cause you get the milk for free, or something.
Posted by theKM | Jan 29, 2009 @ 12:19 AM | 53,708 Views
Yay MightyPutty!
Posted by theKM | May 19, 2008 @ 12:42 PM | 55,327 Views
here's the horse...
Posted by theKM | Feb 02, 2008 @ 04:16 PM | 55,625 Views
Managed to get in on a set of try-outs of a small motor. Here's the try-out thread...

...and attached is a pic of what I got in the mail.
Posted by theKM | Jan 03, 2008 @ 12:57 PM | 55,899 Views
...and while gathering the Maelstrom and flicking through the Floaterline, I realised there was no original sketches, as the Floaterline idea actually started as a canard... and was the originating point for the "common fuselage" idea to have the canard, and a more "typical" plane arrangement.

The attached sketches show the two variant ideas and that it has actually made it into CAD... the more "natural" looking wing, or the constant chord which was to have visual queues back to golden age planes like the GeeBee and Wedell Williams.

And from the front elevation, you can kind of see how I progressed from this to the dihedral shape for the Maelstrom.

The Maelstrom

Posted by theKM | Jan 03, 2008 @ 12:33 PM | 55,938 Views
Back in august I posted into an EDF forum with some sketches of a design I've been workin on since February. It's an EDF canard seaplane, which will be called "the Maelstrom". Here's the same sketches rotated for better viewing...
Posted by theKM | Jul 25, 2007 @ 02:01 PM | 58,113 Views
The latest updated plans for the Twinkle have arrived. These include some minor corrections and improvements to the design and updates for the instructions to make them clearer.

The new depron version of the plans also arrived. These depron plans were developed from scratch with just the outer dimensions of the original as consideration. All the parts are made specifically for the depron build and as such create the exact same plans as the balsa version in an aerodynamic sense. can also build a balsa/depron hybrid from the balsa plans. By using depron for the fuselage and tip floats, you get a plane with the raw builders charm of the balsa build, with the durability of the depron (the depron can take a lot of knocks about the fuse and tip floats without creating leaking problems).

The plan sets are available from my site...

Posted by theKM | Jul 20, 2007 @ 12:18 AM | 56,550 Views
Plans for Twinkle can be found/ordered from my site...
Posted by theKM | Mar 17, 2006 @ 01:58 AM | 60,358 Views
Winter is coming to a close and every time I see water, or the evenings hush to a dull roar of dead-calm nothingness... I keep thinking I need another amphibian to commit flight and reprise efforts put into Twinkle.

For the longest time I've needed to build a classic looking thing-of-fancy (not scale at all), and more recently it's been of a float plane amphib configuration. The idead also flirt every now and then with it being a canard. Over time it will probably take on a few configurations based on the classic fuselage theme with common parts and construction style. But for now... here's where my thoughts are for...

...the Floaterline Special
Posted by theKM | Mar 07, 2006 @ 01:47 PM | 59,292 Views
no really it is... it's a blog entry... just try and deny it.