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May 13, 2018, 01:57 PM
Doug Simmons's Avatar
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Build Log

bye no-crash streak (video)

I have a twin motor plane with more than its share of idiosyncrasies, a real fixer-upper with many out-of-the-box problems and many points of failure, on top of the added complexity of plane with more than one prop to spin. I also like making things way too complicated, for example using two eight channel receivers, one with a flight controller, and a dozen telemetry sensors. This particular plane, to offer it further as an example, came with two 30A ESCs when combined they can exceed 75 amps on the bench with, my opinion at least, too thin, too hot wires, and with only 2A max being fed to the receiver to power all of this and several sketchy servos. I don't even know how many hours I put into reading the rcgroups thread to find out what I needed to do and buy to fix the problems.

Well I got her airborne, and though I crashed at the end of my second flight, it was due to good ol' pilot error (excessive elevator throw), not my messing up the voltage on the BEC or bad soldering or a brown out or signal loss. That was actually comforting, messing up with the sticks, finding myself in an inverted stall too close to a tree. I put several, maybe more, hours not just into repairing it but making improvements, for example swapping out a receiver that was reporting low voltage, laying in thicker wires with better connectors, installing Durafly Tundra 40A reversible ESCs plus the Castle BEC and repairing the structural damage.

Bushmule water flight, such as it was (RC crash) (5 min 35 sec)

Lots of major changes on a crashed plane, changes on the transmitter too. I did what I thought was a diligent preflight in the basement, but in these situations once declaring the plane ready I head to the local pond with the intent not to fly but to taxi and see what happens, what problems pop up that I missed, what breaks, did I glue the right float to the strut sufficiently, did I cover up the new ESCs and CX the water rudder well enough, what am I screwing up with the transmitter. For whatever reason at least a few significant things reveal themselves that I didn't catch in the basement. If I'm satisfied that the plane is both seaworthy and airworthy, great, I can fly; otherwise, I'm not bummed, questioning my masculinity, if I end up hauling her back to the car without taking off.

For example, just an hour ago during a water taxi preflight, an aileron servo clevis snapped. The water rudder wasn't straight. One motor wouldn't shift into reverse, instead the bomb door would open, that is until the servo stripped, leaving it stuck halfway open. The struts were bent and the plane was tilting too much. One camera battery died too fast in spite of a full charge. One of the floats which is partially covered in plastic and it took on water, need to patch that. The low power and full power range checks were solid though, and gunning it for a while with the plane between my legs did not significantly heat up the new wiring or the ESCs (even though I have sexy legs).

No longer having to mess with the flight controller, a few switches and pots were freed up, so I put the reversing of both ESCs on the momentary switch and liked it, and committed it to muscle memory. Good things worth learning included that my improvised covering of the ESCs and waterproof of this and that held up to the splashing around from taxiing, and at times with some speed. Maybe it could handle saltwater. Or maybe not - the next time I'm on saltwater I'll taxi extensively again. I really, really do not want to crash this plane again, I want to take off with less anxiety, without crossing my fingers. Some of these things I fixed on site, the rest I'll take care of now, and once I do, though the trimming will be intense, my odds of a successful flight will be above fifty.

Last edited by Doug Simmons; May 13, 2018 at 07:51 PM.
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May 13, 2018, 02:36 PM
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mike_o's Avatar
"Sorry about the clickbait title" ?

The entire post makes no sense to me. Why do you have MPX stickers on that god forsaken Bushmule? Or are those MPX wings? What are you trying to say??

I hated the Skymule, and probably never had a plane performing more poorly than that, and I think you're doing Multiplex great injustice by putting their name any near that piece of cra*
May 13, 2018, 03:18 PM
Doug Simmons's Avatar
Thread OP
Like I said, satire. That's the joke, the juxtaposition of the decals and brand of a plane that's a true RC classic and an obscure Hobbyking plane, that's funny to me.

As for the post, it's just a partial build log. I've written worse, though it could use a less misleading title. My apologies for the negative experience on my little blog. Moving forward I'll try harder.

I maintain that the stickers are funny (though humor is in the eyes of the beholder) but I'd prefer to attempt a normal paint job, Coast Guard theme maybe.
Latest blog entry: Funcub Heavy
May 13, 2018, 07:56 PM
Doug Simmons's Avatar
Thread OP
You win, Denmark. With my apologies to Multiplex, whose planes, like you, I have enjoyed myself and set up for others, offending photos excised.

"A great injustice," any chance that's overstating the gravity of some silly misappropriation of model airplane stickers? Take it down a notch, Mike, c'mon big boy.
Latest blog entry: Funcub Heavy

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