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Posted by NobatteryNopower | Jan 01, 2022 @ 02:04 PM | 45,013 Views
***update jan 17 2021*** I think I got PPM-in (head tracking decoding) working simultaneously on the Arduino, eliminating one PPM-to-PWM converter. I need to test it first. When all works as expected, I'll update the code.

I managed to get two affordable Aliexpress Hall sensor pedals working with an Arduino + PWM converter to output a PPM signal over 1 CH. And also added a potentiometer PWM signal for steering/CH2. Adding a Head tracker is also possible when using two PPM-converters.

Code at the end of this post.

- To do for 2022: Learn how to implement headtracker PPM signals

Name: PedalsPlusSteering2.jpg
Views: 15
Size: 1.61 MB

To do:

- Order steering wheel
- Order/build a nice housing/case/box to make a steering column.

Parts list:
- Arduino Every | Approx. $10 (I gave up on clones, none I ordered worked. Please post link if you have good experience with some.
- Two pedals | Approx $13 each
- Pwm-to-PPm converter | Approx. $10. You'll need two if you want to add head tracking.
- 10K or 20K potentiometer as a steering sensor
- Bearings | Make sure you order the right size for the steering wheel shaft.

Below this line, either buy it or DIY:

- Steering wheel | Approx. $23
- Steering wheel adapter | For a Go Kart steering wheel, mine was approx. $16 Reading
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Dec 01, 2021 @ 04:23 AM | 9,192 Views
Edit - Dec 2nd 2021 - It Works!

PWM / RC control of WS2812 leds. (0 min 20 sec)

#include <FastLED.h>
#define LED_PIN     7
#define NUM_LEDS    16
#define BRIGHTNESS  20
#define LED_TYPE    WS2812
int PWMin = 13;
int PWMvalue = 0;
int value=0;

void setup() 
  FastLED.addLeds<WS2812, LED_PIN, GRB>(leds, NUM_LEDS);
  pulseIn (13, INPUT);
  FastLED.setBrightness(  BRIGHTNESS );
void loop() 
  PWMvalue      = pulseIn(PWMin, HIGH, 20000);

  if ((PWMvalue >950) && (PWMvalue < 1000))
  leds[0] = CRGB(255, 0, 0);;
  if ((PWMvalue >950) && (PWMvalue < 1300))
  leds[1] = CRGB(255, 69, 0);;
  if ((PWMvalue >950) && (PWMvalue < 1400))
  leds[2] = CRGB(255, 255, 0);;
  if ((PWMvalue >950) && (PWMvalue < 1500))
  leds[3] = CRGB(0, 215, 0);;

  if ((PWMvalue >1500) && (PWMvalue < 2000))
  leds[4] = CRGB(0, 215, 0);;
  if ((PWMvalue >1600) && (PWMvalue < 2000))
  leds[5] = CRGB(255, 255, 0);;
  if ((PWMvalue >1700) && (PWMvalue < 2000))
  leds[6] = CRGB(255, 69, 0);
...Continue Reading
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Nov 01, 2021 @ 11:55 PM | 14,911 Views
EDIT Nov. 30th 2021 - IT WORKS!

You'll need 10 resistors of 220 or 330 Ohms to limit the current to the LED bars!

PWM control Led Bar (0 min 18 sec)

const int LED1= 11; 
const int LED2= 10;
const int LED3= 9;
const int LED4= 8;
const int LED5= 7;
const int LED6= 6;
const int LED7= 5;
const int LED8= 4;
const int LED9= 3;
const int LED10= 2;
int PWMin = 13;
int PWMvalue = 0;

void setup()
pinMode(LED1, OUTPUT); 
pinMode(LED2, OUTPUT);
pinMode(LED3, OUTPUT);
pinMode(LED4, OUTPUT);
pinMode (LED5, OUTPUT);
pinMode (LED6, OUTPUT);
pinMode (LED7, OUTPUT);
pinMode (LED8, OUTPUT);
pinMode (LED9, OUTPUT);
pinMode (LED10, OUTPUT);
pulseIn (13, INPUT);

void loop()
  PWMvalue      = pulseIn(PWMin, HIGH, 25000);


if ((PWMvalue >900) && (PWMvalue < 1000))

digitalWrite (LED1, LOW);
digitalWrite (LED2, LOW);
digitalWrite (LED3, LOW);
digitalWrite (LED4, LOW); 
digitalWrite (LED5, LOW);
digitalWrite (LED6, HIGH);
digitalWrite (LED7, HIGH);
digitalWrite (LED8, HIGH); 
digitalWrite (LED9, HIGH);
digitalWrite (LED10, HIGH);

if ((PWMvalue >1000) && (PWMvalue < 1100))
digitalWrite (LED1, LOW);
digitalWrite (LED2, LOW);
digitalWrite (LED3, LOW);
digitalWrite (LED4, LOW); 
digitalWrite (LED5, LOW);
digitalWrite (LED6, HIGH); 
digitalWrite (LED7, HIGH);
digitalWrite (LED8, HIGH); 
digitalWrite (LED9, HIGH);
digitalWrite (
...Continue Reading
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Sep 26, 2021 @ 03:19 AM | 28,214 Views
Part 2

- Made some inner boards/decks to accommodate all electronics. Mostly 5V & 12V BEC's and two PDB's. I want to have most if not all devices their own power supply to increase redundancy.
- Upper deck dry fitted and braced so it doesn't drop down while constructing.
- To do: Install Matek F765-WSE wich is en route with the mailman
- Must finish the two masts to accommodate camera, VTX, Actioncam, pan/tilt and a bunch of antenna's probably
- I still need to order a serial transmitter like a 3DR SIK Radio or clone for telemetry & wireless connection to the Ardupilot Ground Station laptop.
- Learning how to use Ardupilot
- Paint the whole thing in a nice color. (I like orange)
- Glue the deck in

The battery is either/or two 4S/5000 Lipo's or a 12V/17000 Lead battery. Probably the lead battery is either way going to be used as ballast to stabilize the whole thing. It floats quite high due to low weight....Continue Reading
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Jul 02, 2021 @ 02:03 AM | 9,541 Views
Part 1

I decided that building a hull out of wood per the always succesful methode Design As You Go wasn't viable while also becoming a father recently. Time became my enemy.

So i looked around at various ebay-like sites and found the perfect 41" hull as a starting point for as little as $100. It's supposed to be some sort of tug boat and the rear deck is supposed to be cut out. I'm not going to do that. I want a higher rise rear (I like thicc boats and i cannot lie) so more electronics can fit in there. THIS_HULL_IS_PERFECT When it arrived, it looked like it was stored in a barn for a few decades or something...
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Jun 07, 2021 @ 05:34 AM | 19,281 Views
I want a FPV boat that can also do autonomous missions. So I started building one.

Disclaimer: I have never built a RC boat out of wood. Time will tell if buying a hull would have saved me time, money & lifespan.

- When the boat is almost ready, I'll buy a Pixhawk controller, loaded with Ardurover.
- I wanted to have two steerable thrusters. But the first ones that finally arrived after months and months of shipping nightmare where too small, the second ones where too large. So not two but one large thruster it is to make the boat transportable and not too large. Total length of the boat approx. 44" or 112cm
- No rudder. Steering with a servo controlled thruster is way more... advanced ...Continue Reading
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Feb 24, 2021 @ 10:23 AM | 17,455 Views
To continue this path of using a PWM-PPM converter as an trainer-input, I've come up with something

Prototype of throttle and brake/reverse pedals over one channel:

- Exhanged the rotary potentiometer of a servo tester with a fader/slider. I used a 10K fader but woud prefer 20K-ish as the original potentiometer.
- Effective range of the fader should be better. I'll have to look into this more. *Edit* Nope, works fine. 100% in both directions.
- The heavier the sliding base of the fader, the better I think. To avoid being pulled up by quickly releasing the pedal(s)

RC Throttle & Brake/Reverse pedals (0 min 17 sec)

Posted by NobatteryNopower | Feb 01, 2021 @ 07:54 AM | 21,762 Views
*update feb 15 - 2021*

Previous brain fart regarding a gas & brake pedal connected to the trainer port:

Radio's confirmed that work (Don't forget to set the desired radio channels to trainer):
- Spektrum DX8 gen1
- RadioMaster TX16S

My goal is/was to make an 8 CH analog input (potentiometers/switches) so I can built my own joystick or gas/brake pedals and switches (A switch will just use a combination of resistors to switch between low-mid-high impedance)

I connected this PWM to PPM converter to the trainer port of my RadioMaster TX16S. (Banggood ID: 1423476)
...But if you use two, you can go up to 16 Channels PWM input *Edit - maybe PPM is limited to a certain amount of channels*

I used this Servo tester:

I used two outputs of a servo tester, set to auto-sweep to visualize if it's working, connected to CH7 & CH8 of the PWM>PPM converter. For real usage, one servo tester per channel/function will be needed.

From the Banggood product page:
* This module uses 32-bit single-chip microcomputer to complete signal acquisition, processing and conversion. The stability and speed are far superior to ordinary 8-bit single-chip microcomputer.
* The input signal is completely recognized automatically, no need to switch manually, the status indication is simple and clear.
* 5V power supply, support 8 channel output, plug and
...Continue Reading
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Jan 27, 2021 @ 03:12 AM | 17,236 Views
I think i've found a complete solution for all my/your wiring harness problems regarding flight controllers, VTX, 4-in-1 esc's and FPV camera's.

I've ordered these two sets. One has 1mm spacing between the pins, the other 1.25mm. Hopefully this solves all my problems regarding custom harnesses, losing spare cables in 'the pile' and becoming frustrated after burning up another camera.
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Jan 21, 2021 @ 10:19 AM | 18,733 Views
I have a Fatshark Trinity Headtracking module and connected it to my Radiomaster TX16s. Here's how:

As I wanted to use CH7 and CH8 for pan and tilt, those will be used as example in this mini tutorial.

To program your desired channels on the Trinity module:
Press the Trinity button when powering the module up and let go of the button directly after powering up. Then listen to the beeps to get to the preferred mode, confirm mode by pressing button, listen to beeps for correct setting, confirm setting by pressing button. See attachment.

On the Radiomaster:
Go to the input page and select the channels you're going to use for pan & tilt. As an input source, iv'e selected TR7 for pan, TR8 for tilt. (TR stands for TRainer port) See attachments.

On your receiver, connect the pan-servo to CH7 and the tilt-servo to CH8.

Connect the Trinity cable to the Radiomaster (3.5mm audio jack on top)
Power cycle all parts.

Press the button on the Trinity module, after one beep the tracker works. Thats all!
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Jan 04, 2021 @ 05:12 AM | 17,672 Views
Before I hack my old DX8 into a PC steering wheel & pedals, I made an in-between solution to see how that would work. So I placed a switch between the rudder potentiometer and an extra potentiometer on the side. With a metal flange that turned out to be almost perfect, I placed a 1/10 wheel on the side, onto the shaft of the potentiometer.

Reversing rudder goes as normal. Only thing is the wheel steers the opposite from the stick. I've tried switching wires but that didn't do much. Oh well, no biggie.

Rudder Steering Wheel Ground FPV (0 min 19 sec)

Posted by NobatteryNopower | Jan 02, 2021 @ 02:49 AM | 19,924 Views
Welp, I already hit my goal for 2021 on New Years day. Previously I hit 99kmph a few weeks ago and wasn't satisfied with that 1 km below the magical number 100. So I took my 5inch quad, mounted a GPS puck to it and tried to go beyond 100kmph on 31-12-2020. Unfortunately I mounted the gps in a way its upwards view was obstructed, thus never saw any satellites.

So I made risers constructed of two control horns to raise the gps a bit for an unobstructed view of the sky. And it worked. I hit 109Kmph

This quad is flown with this FC.
Motors = Emax RS2205 - 2300Kv
Battery = Turnigy Nanotech 1600Mah
Frame is Geprc Elegant clone KHX5
Vtx = Flash VTX5848
GPS = uBLOXNEO-M8N, compass not used

For the post-flight info: I still have to figure out why it says Total flying distance = 0, Total flight time = 0:00hr.
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Dec 26, 2020 @ 06:43 AM | 24,835 Views
Having recently completely reset my Radiomaster TX16s, I'm adding back one by one all the models I use. As a memo to myself, these are the settings that are used when binding an older version of the Mobula6 - DSMX version to a Radiomaster TX16s:

For the Mobula6/DSMX:
In Betaflight:
Ports tab: Uart3 - serialRX
save & reboot
Configuration tab:
Serial based Receiver
save & reboot
CLI tab:
set spektrum_sat_bind = 9
set spektrum_sat_bind_autoreset = OFF
-unplug USB-
-Plug in USB-

In the Radiomaster TX16s radio:
Make sure external module is turned off
Internal RF:
Module Status: V1.3.1.92 AETR
Channel Range: CH1 - CH7
Receiver: 01 |BIND| - |RANGE|
Enable max. throw [?*]
Servo update rate: 22ms
Scroll a bit up and hit Bind. The 'headlights' of the Mobula6 should turn off/on to let you know binding was successful.

Connect to Betaflight
CLI tab:
set spektrum_sat_bind = 0
set spektrum_sat_bind_autoreset = ON

*Also, i needed to extend all ranges in the Output-page of the radio to +/- 125 to get close to 1000-1500-2000 in Betaflight. But now that I mention that, I see that there's an option called Enable max. throw in the Model-page of the radio that I should check out to see the effect of that.
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Dec 13, 2020 @ 09:06 AM | 21,831 Views
*Update 23-12-2020*
I mistakenly bought this AIO FC+ ESC combo:

Unfortunately the mistake I made was not reading properly. This AIO has a total of 35A, not 35A per ESC. Bummer. That might be too little. *edit 1-1-2021* Flies fine! Max amp not higher than 22A at a speed of 109Kmph

So i ordered this one instead: .. A few amps more to be sure. And now we play the waiting game...again.

After adding a GPS to my 7 inch quad, I suddenly became a tiny bit obsessed with speed. Because 99kph with the previous setup is not cool. It should be 100 or more. That's what my brain is telling me.

So i temporarily removed the SJCam5000x and added some fancy front cover I had laying around. A Nanotech 4S/1500 all the way up front should balance it out and hopefully provides enough power for a few speed runs. I won't rest this quest before I went over a 100kph*. Now, I'll have to wait for decent weather.

* With the gear I have. I'm not going to buy 6S batteries or a whole new frame or motors. I challenge myself to go over 100kph with the stuff I have and that's it.
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Nov 25, 2020 @ 10:58 AM | 18,742 Views
A big shout out to this person on Youtube:
Betaflight 4.2 tuning for long range (7+ inch) | 8inch | Iflight xl 10 | xing 2806.5 | blackbox (3 min 15 sec)
For providing settings that removed almost all jello in my SJcam5000x + 7inch frame video's. I'm still learning how to tune and having a jello-free return point of Pid-configurations in a back up when it goes wrong helps A LOT. THANK YOU.

SJCAM5000X set to 1080P / 60FPS / EIS OFF:
SJCAM5000X 1080P 60FPS (2 min 24 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Nov 21, 2020 @ 11:48 AM | 18,948 Views
Part 1

I've been slowly working towards a maiden with the balsa Super Alula FV plane. I've build a drop-pod like camera structure to mount underneath the wing. On the other side of the fuselage I placed the VTX with the heat sink on the underside. The RHCP antenna is removable for transportation.

To do:
- Cover the bottom of the wings with Hobbyking clear covering.
- Remove some covering so glueing the fuselage to the wing won't be a problem.
- Remove some covering so glueing the camera pod to the underside of the wing won't be a problem
- Mount the flightcontroller
- Mount the TBS nano receiver + antenna
- Make balsa top fuselage covers
- Mount horns & clevises
- Maybe paint the fuselage and tail section white so moisture stays out of the balsa parts.
Posted by NobatteryNopower | Nov 09, 2020 @ 02:48 AM | 21,409 Views
I've bolted three ZMR250 bottom plates together with the arms of a long forgotten RCTimer Aliencopter Bee quad frame to end up with a 7" frame. 8" props would fit as well.

A short test flight indoors showed all systems operational.

Matek F722 + FCHUB Vtx
Racerstar SPROG X 35A BLHeli_s Dshot600 ESC's
Racerstar AirA 2508 KV1200
7 inch props. HQProp I believe
Runcam camera
SJcam 5000X - lets see if this can hold up well enough.
Aomway antenna for setting up Vtx, will be replaced for flight.

Did a test flight yesterday in Angle-mode ... because I left my goggles at home and boy do I suck flying LOS. I'll admit, I've lost my mojo.

The SJCam5000X shows promise though. Didn't see jello/vibrations in either 1080/60fps nor 4K*/24fps with either EIS** on or off.

** Electronic Image Stabilisation

*Edit* Last night thought it would be a good idea to update the firmware of the flightcontroller. I did remember that I've mounted the FC upside down due to wiring challenges so I flipped the roll-axis 180 in BF. However... I forgot you have to remap the motors as well. Woke up early today, saw that it was foggy & gorgeous outside and grabbed my gear.

So what should have been a cinematic flight over foggy fields with a rising sun, became a flip-fest of biblical proportions.

Motor Switch (0 min 39 sec)

A day later:

Charged everything the night before for a new chance at an epic video. A LOT less fog unfortunately, compared to yesterday but still eager to test this frame. Long story short, my FPV cam fogged up and had to do a semi-emergency landing.

The SJCAM5000X however... held up perfectly. Much better than I expected. My Telemetry / Rssi was all over the place. I don't have that much experience with Crossfire or telemetry yet. I'll have to dig in more.

This flight: 1080p/60fps:
SJCam5000Elite FPV test-1 (0 min 38 sec)

This flight: 1080p/60fps slowed down in postprocessing to 30fps:
SJCam5000Elite 60fps to 30fps Test-2 (1 min 16 sec)

Posted by NobatteryNopower | Oct 26, 2020 @ 02:03 AM | 20,256 Views
I never thought using superglue / CA for building a balsa plane would speed up the building process in an ungodly manner. This also applies for when you've sanded away too much and quickly have to add balsa strips to correct mistakes

I've added an extra 1.5mm carbon rod for more stiffness. Also, ... I'm hitting a wall here. The CG is becoming a problem as I guesstimated correctly While I kept 98% of the proportions according to plan, the motor up front and the added balsa in the fuselage for strength, tips the balance point heavily towards nose heavy when dry fitting a battery in the space originally planned. I have to do some free style scratch building to solve this without adding too much useless weight in the back. Or design an altered fuselage with a shorter nose. *Edit* OR trying to stuff most of the FPV gear in the back / on the tail
**Edit** Nope, i shortened the fuselage with a good two inches. It will work but space for gear is limited... Back to the drawing board. Either design a new, longer tail section or a complete new fuselage and change the looks completely.