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Thread: Lowrider LSA

  1. #1921

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    Quote Originally Posted by skywagon8a View Post
    You could spray paint the pink.
    I would know it was pink inside...white will work...just need to find some and get into a sewing mood...that doesn't happen often.
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  2. #1922

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    The Federal Aviation Administration's annual Aerospace Forecast predicts a gradual increase in general aviation hours flown overall, but piston-single aircraft are expected to decline about 0.8% annually in fleet size and hours flown over the next two decades.

    Hope they are wrong. That's 16% in 20 years. Probably aren't any more accurate than the weather guessers.

    A question...I only have about 3/16" clearance between the front inside corner of my fuel tank and the fuel tank access panel at the top of the front spar. I have adjusted the tank down as far as I can without it hitting the skin stiffeners on the bottom. If I had only made the front of the tank a 1/4" shorter. Does anyone see a problem with that hitting the spar and rubbing? The tank is PDT (pretty damn tight).
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  3. #1923
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    If the tank is PDT it is unlikely to chafe on the spar. To alleviate any doubt you could insert a piece of felt or other anti chafe materiel for piece of mind. 3/16" is a lot.
    N1PA

  4. #1924

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    Half inch would make me happy. I can put some rubber stuff I got for the straps all along the spar edge...that will make me comfortable but short of happy. I'm thinking immobile is better than large clearance gaps, but both are better I think. Hopefully, the next wing will have greater clearance although the tanks are very much the same size as are the spars...we'll see.
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  5. #1925

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    Has anyone fooled around with an arduino?? It's a programable micro processor that is set up to accept 12 inputs and 12 outputs. Apparently they are being used in race cars to program electronic fuel injection and electronic ignition. They are the heart of small robots and drones and #2 son is building controllers with them for several different things such as a traffic light controller and antenna tuner. He seems to think they will easily run an autopilot system with XYZ (3 axis) inputs from a GPS and outputs to servos. Not sure how fast the GPS signals refresh so there needs to be a few lines of code to keep the system from doing corrections too quickly or slowly as the case may be.

    Best part...they cost ~$20 and have a micro USB port to plug into your computer to program them. Can't program...me neither...last time I could program was when Univac was making computers with vacuum tubes...fortunately #3 son does some serious programming so maybe I can co-opt him. Probably worth a few hundred bucks to see if it will work.
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  6. #1926
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    I have one in a drawer somewhere.
    Eddie Foy
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God"

  7. #1927
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    Eddie, I think that I've seen some of them around the edges of some of the airports in Florida. In Texas too.
    N1PA

  8. #1928
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    Too early for the sauce, Pete.
    Eddie Foy
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God"

  9. #1929

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    The arduino has been used in some open-source autopilot projects, but 3DR has moved on to the pixhawk and gluon to the xbee. It is no lark to program an autopilot from scratch, there are 3 nested loops of 3 different types of feedback on each axis just for starters. Fortunately, if you're willing to fork out a few hundred, 3DR can sell you a pixhawk mini ready to go.
    What's a go-around?

  10. #1930

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    I think it was Oshkosh 2 years ago someone with a red fabric airplane had wired a pixhawk to cheap quarter-scale RC servos moving trim tabs on all 3 axis. Just checked: $199 for the pixhawk mini, including gps, 3 axis gyro and software.
    What's a go-around?

  11. #1931

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skywalker View Post
    I think it was Oshkosh 2 years ago someone with a red fabric airplane had wired a pixhawk to cheap quarter-scale RC servos moving trim tabs on all 3 axis. Just checked: $199 for the pixhawk mini, including gps, 3 axis gyro and software.
    WOW! That sure gets my little brain smoking!! I'd be willing to try that but with more powerful servos...I think. If they are built for scale models they might come up short on being able to control a full sized, albeit small plane. As long as I can flip a switch or pull a breaker and shut it down I might be willing to play with it.

    Thanks Skywalker...got my hardware guy looking at it as I type.
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  12. #1932

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    Could you run full sized servos with relays? Would the relay react quickly enough so you would get smooth control surface movements???
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  13. #1933
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skywalker View Post
    I think it was Oshkosh 2 years ago someone with a red fabric airplane had wired a pixhawk to cheap quarter-scale RC servos moving trim tabs on all 3 axis. Just checked: $199 for the pixhawk mini, including gps, 3 axis gyro and software.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lowrider View Post
    WOW! That sure gets my little brain smoking!! I'd be willing to try that but with more powerful servos...I think. If they are built for scale models they might come up short on being able to control a full sized, albeit small plane. As long as I can flip a switch or pull a breaker and shut it down I might be willing to play with it.

    Thanks Skywalker...got my hardware guy looking at it as I type.
    Low, Skywalker has a point. All his servos move are trim tabs on each control surface. Not the surface itself. The tabs wouldn't require a powerful servo since there would not be a high load on each tab. AND should there be a hard over failure you ought to be able to still fly the plane with extra muscle power. Uncomfortable maybe but not catastrophic.

    I used to fly a DC-9. Are you aware that when you move the ailerons and elevator with the yoke that you are only moving trim tabs on the surfaces? The surfaces themselves are free floating. Not connected to any control except in the case of a full nose down on the elevator for stall prevention when some hydraulics kick in.
    N1PA

  14. #1934

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    Sky,

    I'm aware. I fly by trim tabs a lot. I welded in tabs for servos on the stick for ailerons and in the tail for the elevator and I suppose I keep thinking I need to be using them but I don't. Is having a tab on one aileron enough?

    I spent some time last night looking at the Pixhawk 2.1 which is coming out soon. Apparently it is a quantum leap ahead in sensitivity and it can even use 2 GPS inputs which it will average for better control. If I can believe the hype it's pretty much a self-contained autopilot...just add servos. There are many controllers that can do the job so the real challenge is to find "actuators" that will handle control of a full sized airplane surfaces. There are plenty out there.
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  15. #1935

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    Low, it's easy to spend $$ on RC servos, but it mostly goes to more precise gears for less backlash, digital feedforward servo amps and such for competition. You can buy big huge servos for less than $100 cuz they're simple and old design. They easily control trim tabs and they can be ganged together if you're not sure. You can buy curve matchers for ganging up servos without having them fight. You could gang up and it would still be a fraction of the cost of a real servo. Giant scale RC suppliers have many cool toys to get your brain going.
    What's a go-around?

  16. #1936

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    Skywalker,

    Thanks for your thoughts and ideas!!

    Precision in a cub size and speed plane does not seem critical. Reliability and no need for frequent maintenance tops my list. Any preferred brands?

    I'm down to only 55 nut plates to go on the fuel tank cover...they should make zippers for stuff like that. Maybe the next wing willget a hinge on the front.
    Last edited by Lowrider; 03-28-2017 at 10:24 AM.
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  17. #1937
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    Low,
    I would go for one tab on one aileron. It is only a trim tab operated by a servo. The servo should be durable and capable of continuous duty. Sensitivity could be adjusted by varying the size of the tab. An autopilot is to ease the pilot's work load and hopefully to make the ride smoother on a turbulent day. I've flown a pneumatic servo autopilot. It was very sluggish and behind the airplane all of the time. Probably not much better or worse than no autopilot at all. I would want one which was very sensitive. Enough to keep up with the turbulence which you are trying to combat.

    Is this what you are talking about? http://www.proficnc.com/
    N1PA

  18. #1938

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    Yes Sir...that's the best one I've found so far but still looking.

    Start with a fairly large...3"x 9" and cut it down as it works?
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  19. #1939
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    I would think that is more than enough.
    N1PA

  20. #1940

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    The Hobby King brand "Orange" has an AS3X ripoff gyro for $20. Keeping heading hold drift in mind you could use it to hold straight and level for a few minutes while folding maps and such. It has sensitivities on all 3 axis on tiny potentiometers, couldn't be simpler./

    As far as servos go, buy a good old Futaba "1/4 scale servo" for well under 50 bucks. Hook it up to an RC system and grab onto the output arm, which is usually 1.5 inches or so, with your thumb and forefinger. See if you can resist the motion while moving the stick on the transmitter. You will be impressed. I haven't shopped lately, but compare torque ratings and just go for greatest torque for the buck. I don't think resolution or speed even figure in this application. I'll bet it'll be hard to spend more than $200 on three entirely adequate servos.
    Last edited by Skywalker; 03-28-2017 at 05:06 PM.
    What's a go-around?

  21. #1941

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    Thanks Skywalker, I'll follow that advise! Reliability wise, is Futaba good? I would put an access panel in the aileron but would rather not be in there replacing things very often.

    Is 1/4 scale as large as "model" get?
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  22. #1942

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    This looks like a good addition to the servo

    https://www.servocity.com/637120

    You were right Skywalker...these servos are damn powerful! Now if I can just figure out how to control them.
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  23. #1943

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    I would be leery of hobby king gyros. They have a tendency to die when you don't want them too. I quit using them when they started destroying my RC helicopters before I could. As far as servos go JR, futaba and hitec are bulletproof. You can get most of them with metal gears in a coreless digital version. (Fast and precise) Additionally you should be able to power the gyro as a standalone system by bypassing the signal input wire input. The only issue I see so far is when the system self calibrates. They like to be in a level flight attitude with minimal vibration.


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  24. #1944

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    I chose a Hitech HS-755HB Servo to use as an experimental to see if the Pixhawk 2.1 will operate it properly. I'm also using the exoskeleton to beef up the servo and take the lateral stress off the servo shaft since it will be taking any buffeting or turbulence against the tab. Good choice?
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  25. #1945

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    Looks good to me I have used those karbonite gears on some of my large scale birds. FYI. even most "metal" gear servos have one sacrificial plastic gear-keeps one from destroying the rest of the servo.


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  26. #1946

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    OK...credit card info on the way.
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  27. #1947

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    Thank Beaver and Skywalker!!

    I'll advise when they arrive.

    I have some 22ga Teflon wire. Would that be OK for power? I need to step down from 12v to 6v.
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  28. #1948

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    It should work.


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  29. #1949

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    There are voltage converters made for electric RC planes that have big Lipo stacks for the motors and you want to tap in for 5 or 6 volts for the guidance. I'm using one on a gasser, just so I can save weight by using a tiny 3s Lipo for guidance power. To address Beaverpilots concern, you can buy bypass boxes that send power directly to the servo, so you're not feeding main servo power thru some tiny gyro or autopilot circuit board. 18ga. would be better for the servo power. If you're going with digital servos(unneeded in my opinion) you'll get some big current spikes, and the voltage at the servo may sag. Since digital servos have some intelligence out there I wonder if voltage dropouts affect them more than an old analog servo.
    The servo bearing block is a new one, told you you'd find treasure! 1/3 scale seems to be the biggest commonly available category, but some 1/2 scale cubs and bipes have flown. It's not too hard to put a feedback potentiometer on a power window motor and amplify the output of a servo amp to suit the motor. But I've lost track, bet you can just buy some whopper servos these days. Some of the birds you see at big meets makes me wonder why these guys didn't take their $20k and build something you can sit in. 100cc engines are becoming commonplace at RC fields, I used a 100cc Yamaha gokart motor to haul my entire self off the ground in a Quicksilver, 1981.
    What's a go-around?
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  30. #1950

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    Ha ha, I have often wondered what my total dollars spent were in the rc hobby. Over the last 30 years. I have thinned down my inventory quite a bit but I still have a 33% extra with a 100cc. I still love flying control line. And I see that my $1000 radio can now be had via a clone for around $75. I've been telling myself a dollar spent in rc is a dollar not spent on the cub.


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  31. #1951

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    I'm using analog servos. I sorta understand ones and zeros but this is new ground for the most part. Last model plane I had was a control line flying wing with an .049...it died on first flight.


    That's a good idea to power servo directly and not run current thru the controller.

    My plan is to attach a trim tab to the trailing edge of the aileron and use a bell crank that is too long with several holes so I can adjust the tab throw on the outside of the finished aileron and not need to open the access panel to get to the servo inside. As Sky mentioned I can reduce the size of the tab as well to reduce sensitivity. The multiple holes for the push/pull rod will also allow adjustment.

    Just got an email from ServoCity...everything is shipped! Price was $68 including extra wire and connectors...Cheap.
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  32. #1952

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    Quote Originally Posted by Beaverpilot View Post
    I've been telling myself a dollar spent in rc is a dollar not spent on the cub.


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    That's one of the reasons why I stopped drinking and chasing women...and my wife frowned on it.
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  33. #1953

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lowrider View Post
    That's one of the reasons why I stopped drinking and chasing women...and my wife frowned on it.
    That is the reason I make her wine!


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  34. #1954

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    A friend gave me some over ripe plums awhile back to use as bear bait. I couldn't see wasting them on bears so I made some wine...turned out pretty good but too sweet for me.
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  35. #1955

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    It's here...very fast service!!

    It appears to be just as I anticipated and very much like another I paid 4x as much for when I was going to have an electric elevator trim. Changed that to push/pull rod but will most likely go back to the servo for the elevator.

    I will fit nicely inside the aileron and I will test it out just as soon as I figure out which wires do what. I have yellow, black and red wires and I can guess that black is ground and red is 6volt which would leave yellow as the signal wire. Do anyone know for sure?
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  36. #1956

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lowrider View Post
    It's here...very fast service!!

    It appears to be just as I anticipated and very much like another I paid 4x as much for when I was going to have an electric elevator trim. Changed that to push/pull rod but will most likely go back to the servo for the elevator.

    I will fit nicely inside the aileron and I will test it out just as soon as I figure out which wires do what. I have yellow, black and red wires and I can guess that black is ground and red is 6volt which would leave yellow as the signal wire. Do anyone know for sure?
    You got it right!


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  37. #1957

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    Thanks Beav!!

    Now I need something to send a signal.

    On second thought...since I already have the elevator trim set up with the push/pull rod and I like the "foolproof" aspect of steel moving the trim I could think about just adding a tab on the other side of the elevator for the autopilot. Either way I have the tail feathers covered, primed and one coat of paint in place so it makes more sense to put the servo on the existing control rod but then when the autopilot is not in the use the trim lever will need to move the "dead" servo each time I trim the elevator and I trim a lot.

    When Trutrak announced their "economy" autopilot I talked to them but they were not interested in having it in an experimental that they haven't tested...understand their concern. That system would have added another tab to the elevator. If I had the Cub type screw drive I could do the servo addition inside the fuselage, not so with mine.

    Thoughts please!
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  38. #1958
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    Low,

    This is a pitch trim on a Fly Baby. It is also similar to the pitch trim on the early Taylorcrafts. Perhaps you could use something like this for your pitch control surface on your autopilot? It would be rather simple without adding any complications to the primary elevator system. And could be easily overpowered in case of a hard-over failure. Size is something which you would need to determine, perhaps not this large.

    N1PA

  39. #1959

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    That's not a bad idea but down low like that would it become a tall grass catcher? I also thought about something like a "spoiler" or speed brake but where to put it. I wouldn't use the AP when the flaps were down but I think whatever I use needs to be in "clean air" so behind the main gear down low on the fuselage might be in a spot where it would be less effective...don't know for sure.
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  40. #1960

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    Buy a servo cycler, it generates the 1.5ms pulse for the yellow wire. A single knob changes the pulse from 1 to 2 ms so you can check the whole throw, which is 90 degrees on most servo output shafts. Easier and simpler than dragging an RC system around during setup.
    Here's my trim tab, 4oz of tubing replaced by 4oz of carbon foam sandwich. I used the old control line technique of using pinked pieces of fabric for the hinges. Using a separate surface for trim means alot more trim drag. Better to move a much larger surface a small amount.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    What's a go-around?

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