Shop our Airplanes Products Drone Products Sales
Thread Tools
Oct 31, 2017, 08:30 AM
Wishing I was at Torrey Pines
dee-grose's Avatar
Steve, we need a picture of your Radian so we can see the camera setup. I'm itching to set up my Radian like this!

Loving the new video...way too cool, bro!

Last edited by dee-grose; Oct 31, 2017 at 12:37 PM.
Sign up now
to remove ads between posts
Oct 31, 2017, 10:03 AM
Piscine Promulgator
surfimp's Avatar
Ask and you shall receive!

Nothing fancy at all, just very straightforward installation using industrial strength velcro. Everything is powered off the Radian's 3S 1300mAh battery, which gives me about 1 - 1.5hrs of flight time. That's with minimal motor use, of course - I only run the motor when climbing back up after a beach run. The bigger energy draw comes from the Runcam Split, which consumes about 650mA while recording. I run the Tramp HV video transmitter at 25mW to minimize the energy draw, as I am only interested in slope soaring within the normal flying zone at Ellwood.

NOTE: only the Runcam Split version 2 can be powered directly off the flight battery like this. The original version required a 5V supply, which would have required the use of a voltage regulator (or powering off the VTX) to step down the voltage into the Split.

The only thing I miss with the Split is having an OSD readout of my battery pack voltage, something my previous Runcam Micro Swift 2 provided. I could, of course, run a separate OSD to provide this, but hopefully it's a feature Runcam adds to the Split in the future.

This is the third iteration of FPV gear on the Radian. It's a great testbed for this stuff, it doesn't mind the weight at all, and is really a joy to fly via FPV.
Last edited by surfimp; Oct 31, 2017 at 10:14 AM.
Oct 31, 2017, 12:12 PM
Wishing I was at Torrey Pines
dee-grose's Avatar
Excellent! Thanks for the pics.

IMO, the head tracking is the part of this whole FPV thing that is so inviting to me. Being able to "look out the wing" bumps the realism up a few notches. When you're in a real airplane, you shouldn't spend all your time staring straight ahead, so why do that in FPV RC flying, right?
Oct 31, 2017, 01:13 PM
Piscine Promulgator
surfimp's Avatar
I agree, we did wireless video downlink stuff starting in 2003/2004 with a fixed camera on top of a Weasel flying wing, and while it was cool, the limited FOV of those old cameras, and the poor quality of the video connection, made it clear that the technology was not really there yet for satisfying immersion.

Today it's a different deal altogether! I am really digging the Spektrum goggles & radio combo, the wireless link is super comfortable, convenient and, so far, extremely reliable.

My next goals are:

1) Get this pan & tilt rig installed on a proper aerobatics glider. I tried using a Dream-Flight Ahi with a fixed camera, but it was pretty uncomfortable - it's small, fast and doesn't carry the weight of a camera & vtx with the same panache that a larger glider does. I'm thinking something in the 2m range will be a good fit.

2) Get a 360 degree pan servo. The 180 of the Fatshark is good, but I'd really like to be able to look all the way back at the tail, if possible. I know other people have gotten this kind of setup going, but it requires a bigger servo - again, something better suited to a larger glider, I suspect.

3) Try "scale FPV", i.e. with the camera inside a simulated cockpit. I think this would be so cool! I wouldn't try to do the whole moving arm & stick thing - that's probably beyond my modelling skills and motivation at this point - but getting that "in cockpit" view would be so neat.
Oct 31, 2017, 01:58 PM
Wishing I was at Torrey Pines
dee-grose's Avatar
Just thinking out loud here, but how much "tilting" do you do compared to "panning" when looking around. I noticed you removed the roll servo. Do you find you really need the tilt servo too? With the wide FOV of these cameras, do you get enough up/down viewing without needing to tilt?
Oct 31, 2017, 03:55 PM
Piscine Promulgator
surfimp's Avatar
Originally Posted by dee-grose
Just thinking out loud here, but how much "tilting" do you do compared to "panning" when looking around. I noticed you removed the roll servo. Do you find you really need the tilt servo too? With the wide FOV of these cameras, do you get enough up/down viewing without needing to tilt?
I do quite a lot, though I'm not sure if it's as obvious as the panning.

On the Fatshark P/T/R I've got, the pan servo is 180* rotation, but the tilt servo is normal rotation (probably around 60*-90* or so). This means that, for a given amount of head movement, I get a lot more camera movement in pan than I do in tilt. In fact, the neck angles I have to get - especially for looking "up" - in order to move the camera an appreciable amount are somewhat significant. My neck is definitely getting a good workout!

All things considered, I'd rather have more "up" than "down" travel in my tilt servo, so that, when looping or inverted, I can better spot my flight path. It's not too bad right now - especially considering the wide-angle lens I'm using - but I feel like it could be better.

Unfortunately, the Spektrum headtracking software doesn't provide any adjustability - it just passes through what appears to be raw input from the headtracker. And the headtracker doesn't provide adjustability, either.

In computer flight sims, where people use TrackIR to accomplish the same thing we do with headtrackers in FPV, you are able to configure, in software, the response curves for each axis. This allows you to apply an exponential effect - but unlike typical uses of expo for flight control surfaces, this expo makes the curve more aggressive, so that less head movement will result in the same camera movement. This gives your neck a break and works really well, once you get used to it.

So down the road I'm thinking I may investigate using a different tilt servo, probably a digital one that will allow me to set its centerpoint at something other than the default "middle of travel", and which I could then setup so I'd get more "up" view. Alternatively, I may be able to address this via a different radio... or perhaps Spektrum will see fit to add some additional adjustability to these inputs (which for me would be ideal) via a firmware update.

But even just the way it is, it's quite good, and I use tilt all the time. I don't miss roll at all, though. That's in the "nice to have but not at all necessary" category for me.
Oct 31, 2017, 04:05 PM
Wishing I was at Torrey Pines
dee-grose's Avatar
Good stuff, Steve.

What I'm trying to figure out is how you do all this flying while standing up...and just a few feet from the edge of the bluff! I'd be sitting in a chair for sure.

Oct 31, 2017, 05:16 PM
Piscine Promulgator
surfimp's Avatar
One argument in favor of standing up, and in this regard slope soaring is a bit unique, is because you'll maintain a better line of sight to your glider, especially when it's in close to the cliff and down low.

I'm flying on 5.8ghz and have found that whenever LoS gets blocked by the cliff, even a little bit, I get some pretty serious fuzz, the "rolling image" effect, and sometimes complete loss of picture. Cliffs are serious business!

Unlike a quad where you can "Punch it, Chewie!" for additional altitude and improved LoS, you have to truly "Use the Force, Luke" and remember exactly where and what you were doing before you lost vision.

It's only happened once or twice, really briefly, and I knew exactly why and how it happened, but suffice to say... flying standing at the cliff edge gives me the least problems, in terms of maintaining a clear picture.

I do find I use a lot of body english when flying FPV, something I've never done while flying LoS. If that's not immersion, I don't know what is!!
Nov 01, 2017, 11:49 AM
Wishing I was at Torrey Pines
dee-grose's Avatar
I didn't consider the LoS for your video link. I was more thinking about all the leaning and head-turning I'd be doing that I'd lose my balance and go tumbling over the cliff.

I fully agree with your "keep doing what you were doing" concept when things go wrong. I always tell folks "remember what you just did so you can undo it when things go bad".
Nov 01, 2017, 12:48 PM
Registered User
Daemon's Avatar
Learning to FPV while standing up is just something that takes some time to get used to.
Nov 01, 2017, 05:02 PM
fly by night
BCSaltchucker's Avatar
I did stand up FPV for 6 years, only more recently started sitting down to do it. ah but I do a bit too much leaning and head tilting still. Recently flew my glider at a cliff and stood to launch then had to sit down at the edge w goggs on
Nov 04, 2017, 12:01 AM
Piscine Promulgator
surfimp's Avatar
Nice start to the weekend. I really like the colors the Runcam Split 2 picks up.

FPV Slope Soaring - Sunset Chill (2 min 6 sec)

^ That's straight out of the camera, and just edited for length / interest.
Nov 04, 2017, 09:50 AM
Wishing I was at Torrey Pines
dee-grose's Avatar
That is some nice video quality for sure. The hand catch was a nice touch too!
Nov 04, 2017, 09:04 PM
Gots me a good used Hobie Hawk
Steve Corbin's Avatar
The FPV thing is interesting, to say the least. I'm not very hip to all the modern stuff, so please be gentle:

Would it be possible for someone to fly a blimp (or steer a car or boat,etc) remotely through the internet, using FPV?

I think folks would pay to fly a blimp through an obstacle course, using this FPV stuff, while online. Or racing cars or boats.

It might be kinda expensive, because you'd have to have a big space, like a warehouse size building, and real live people to straighten out messes, make repairs, etc.

But it's likely the only practical way for someone to pursue the sport of blimp racing, which i think would be fun because it would be slow and relatively easy.

I wonder if it would be profitable? Certainly sounds like fun to me.
Nov 27, 2017, 05:31 PM
Team Spektrum FPV
aaronredbaron's Avatar
man, I sure hope to get out there and fly with you some time, I've got cool stuff to fly but its so flat and boring here! ....

E-Flite PT 17 Stearman FPV with headtracking! (2 min 46 sec)

so... who is going to be the first to DSFPV??

Quick Reply

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Category Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Discussion The FPV slope soaring thread surfimp Slope 103 Nov 26, 2018 12:26 PM
Discussion Slope Soaring CFD - what's the air doing at yours ? Yanchik Modeling Science 0 Apr 05, 2017 09:53 AM
Discussion Video: FPV Slope flying at Soar Utah 2008 Daemon FPV Talk 16 Sep 09, 2008 08:55 PM