Question for night fliers - RC Groups
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Jan 04, 2003, 09:31 PM
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Question for night fliers

I've been flying my Beaver and Cub during dawn and the Curteks have been great. I'm getting a Laser 6 in a few days so I can ditch the Y harness and lighten up the birds. Anyway, this evening I tried flying right before and into the night. It was fun when I can still see the plane but became an incredible challenge when it became totally dark and I had to fly via the lights. It was very hard to keep orientation of the plane although it was also extremely cool. Specially when the landing lights came on during the final leg. I was wondering how y'all keep orientation. Do you shine the red/green wing LED's onto the fuselage (mine is setup so the red and green are at the wing tips facing out and are not strobed)? I have the white strobe on top of the rudder although it would seem better to have it on the bottom of the fuse.
Any advice would be great!

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Jan 04, 2003, 09:56 PM
Look! Up in the sky!
eBird's Avatar
I've got my Curteks mounted on my SlowStick, and they're great! (Ok, that sounded like Tony the Tiger )

I aim my red and green LED's up at the bottom of the wing, from a couple of inches below, and it practically lights up the whole wing. Red on right, green on left, although I believe the "scale" config is the reverse. I just use this cause in a jam, it's easy to say to myself "red on right!" if I get disoriented.

I have a red and green on the wing tips aimed backwards and out, so I can easily see the plane when climbing directly away from me. Then, a white strobe aimed up and illuminating the horizonal stabilizer from below.

Then, two landing lights on the leading edge aimed forward and slightly down.

I can see her no matter what the orientation. If I see the landing lights, she's coming at me. If I see the horizontal stabilizer strobed, she's headin' off.

RED on RIGHT and I always know which wing is which.

It took me a little getting used to, but now it's a piece of cake. And F*U*N.

Enjoy! Watch for wires and branches!
Jan 04, 2003, 10:21 PM
Got Lights?
mcu-electric's Avatar
On our setups, we have had good success with using solid red/green wingtips and pointing them straight out and down at about 30-45 degrees as most flying is usually done from below the model (you'd hope so =p) This has generally been great and we push the limits a lot by flying up over the highway and over houses (about 1000 feet away i would guess) and all you can see is one wing tip. At least if you can see one wing tip and the strobing tail that is all of the nav aid you should need for long range 'tame' flights but if you are doing some wild night flying you may want to consider lighting up entire surfaces of the model. If you still want realistic strobing and yet retain excellent orientation, consider having solid lamps on each point with a white strobe about an inch away as seen in our Beaver video on the webpage.

Matthew J. Currie