RC Radios, Transmitters, Receivers, Servos, gyros Discussion all about rc radios, transmitters, receivers, servos, etc.

Futaba PA 1 assistance

Reply

Old 04-07-2002, 07:28 PM
  #1  
wsmalley
Senior Member
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (6)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Monterey, TN
Posts: 1,080
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default Futaba PA 1 assistance

Have Eagle 2 trainer with 148 DF receiver and 8UAF transmitter. PA1 is mounted on bottom of fuse in "X" mode - though had it also mounted in + mode, works off channel 7 knob. It has never come any where near being able to control aircraft. It appears regardless of sensitivity dialed in the plane becomes 'squirrly' and is all over. The plane is a great flyer w/o the Assist, but is all over the sky with it on. Any thoughts? If I hold the plane up with unit on and move it around, control surfaces move, so I know it's doing something.
wsmalley is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2002, 04:31 PM
  #2  
rcav8or
Senior Member
My Feedback: (5)
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Oxford, IN
Posts: 905
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default Futaba PA 1 assistance

I had virtually the exact same setup, but a 7UAP radio - and I experienced the same problem...unfortunately, I can't remember what I did to remedy it, but will give you the steps I would take to help.

1). you say you've had it both X and + mode...did you leave the settings on the PA the same when you changed to direction the PA pointed? Or did you change the settings? If I remember, it's easy to mistake the X for the + on the PA, so if you inadvertently had the settings to X when you had it physically in +, then if youchanged both settings and direction, you would have had + while pointing in X...I would put it how I thought was right, then try it, if it was squirrely, I would just change the physical pointing of the PA, and leave the settings alone...that would eliminate that.

2) Check and make sure your servos are not reversed, on the PA - you said the control surfaces move, but be VERY sure that they move in the right direction - that is, with the PA turned on, when you lift the nose, the elevator should go down, and when you tip the plane to a left turn, the right aileron should go up. Check, double check, then check once more...if possible, have a buddy check, as well...

3) on the 8UA, I would put the PA on channel 6, so that the PA is off at the farthest left of the knob, and full on when you turn the know all the way to the right. That way, you can fly "hands off", then s-l-o-w-l-y add channel 6, so that the PA comes to life very little at a time, and try to figure out just exactly what is happenning...is it climbing? dropping? right turn? left turn? This can make it easier to determine exactly what is happening, in less than "real time", so instead of just "being squirrely", you can be a little more specific as to what exact inputs the PA is giving to the control surfaces, making it easier to determine what is going on. When you do that, set your PA at the highest sensitivity - the variable input from channel 6, serves as a sensitivity adjustment in and of itself.

4) the PA Sensor HAS to be exactly on the same level plane as the planes centerline...if not, it won't work as it's supposed to. In other words, exactly parallel with the wing saddle. there is no way to compensate for it if it's pointed up or down, the plane will try to make the PA sensor exactly level, not the plane!

5) Are you using a 5-cell, 6V pack? The PA-1's do NOT like 6 volts!! I found out the hard way, and when I went to a 4-cell pack, all the jitters, and subsequent "squirrely" flying went away on one of the trainers....

I hope this helps - I have 3 planes currently with the PA-1, and one with the PA-2....I think they are great, and lot's of fun, and an aid to flying - lot's of people disagree...I think they are fine, as long as you don't become "dependent" on them, and ww it as a solution to poor piloting skills...I have mine set up, so that when my plane goes to "fail-safe" for any reason, the throttle drops to idle, the rudder goes to a crisp left, not enough to snap, but enough to give it a nice, easy left turn, and the PA kicks in, so in effect, the plane goes into a nice, slow left turn, flat and level, because of the PA, and slowly settles to the ground. At least that's the theory...I have shut the transmitter off, and it does exactly that - nice, slow circling of the field, but I don't have the guts, to let it land itself...probably because I know that's not the safest thing to do, but I am confident, that if I ever DID lose radio for any reason, it would be the safest solution.

If you can be a little more specific on the "squirrely" definition, I will try to be of more help - can try to duplicate it with one of mine...

Hey, when you get it working, put the switch on channel 5, get real high, go into a "death spiral", about half way down, flip the switch...amazing what these things can do!!

Keep us posted on your results, and if you need any more info or input, please feel free to email me....
rcav8or is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2002, 06:09 PM
  #3  
wsmalley
Senior Member
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (6)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Monterey, TN
Posts: 1,080
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default PA1

Thanks for the input Roger, I'll try your suggestions. Guess I just like gadgets and thought this would be cool for training and doing the kind of Death Spiral maneuver you spoke of. Have a BTA6 in a Cub I'm building, wonder what it will do. I can't lay my hands on the instructions, but I thought the sensor was supposed to be 1 degree or so, to make the plane climb- but I'll see if I can more acurately measure it. I'm confusedthough about servos being reversed-wouldn't changing them necessarily reverse transmitter thows? Sometimes though, I have an incredible grasp of the obvious! Does time of day, trees in the vicinity or strong winds aloft affect your PA's ability to control. How is it supposed to fly hands-off with unit ON, would it just track more or less straight and level until you input control?
wsmalley is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2002, 06:46 PM
  #4  
rcav8or
Senior Member
My Feedback: (5)
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Oxford, IN
Posts: 905
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default Futaba PA 1 assistance

Servo reversing - if you have your servo reversed by your radio, that same channel has to be reversed on the PA - it is merely giving your servo a signal, NOT altering the signal that is coming from the radio. Therefore, if you give, say, up elevator, but your radio has the servo reversed, the servo may be going counter clockwise, but the PA sends a clockwise signal. If you reverse the PA as well, it will send a counter clockwise signal. Same goes for the ailerons, right and left, if you have a two-aileron servo setup.

In other words, if you DON'T have the PA reversed, and you do have the radio reversed, if it banks left, instead of sending the signal to turn right, it will turn harder left, thinking it is correcting, but in actuality, it will continue to add more and more, until it rolls...if it's the elevator, it may climb, then increase the climb to a loop, or drop into almost an outside loop. If BOTH the aileron and elevator are reversed, you could do almost anything!!

I think you probably need to pay attention to the reversing, compare the radio to the PA...

One degree won't hurt, if you want a climb - I prefer straight and level...

Yes, with it on, it goes in a straight line, level, until you input control. If you have the sensitivity too high, it will try to fight your control, so if you go into a turn, it will try to right itself continuously, making you give more and more input - therefore you need a nice blend, to where it rights itself, but doesn't override your input too much - it's a fairly fine line...once you get it right, though, when you let go of the sticks, it will gracefully come back to straight and level flight. That's why a "variable" channel, such as 6, comes in handy.

I haven't seen much affect of trees, etc, on it, however, late afternoon (dusk) seems to affect it - it doesn't like darkness.

Another fun thing, is in a fun-fly that has hover capabilities - put it in the x mode, put it in the wing, with an open bay. put it perpendicular to the spar, so that the "top" is pointing towards the tail, put the rudder on the aileron plug, and the elevator normal...when you go upward, turn it on, and it will do it's best to keep the plane pointing vertical, on both axis'. Too Cool!!!!
rcav8or is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2002, 06:48 PM
  #5  
rcav8or
Senior Member
My Feedback: (5)
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Oxford, IN
Posts: 905
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default Futaba PA 1 assistance

Oh yeah, I have flown my Asterion 1 foot off the runway, hands off, with the PA on, for about 200 feet...pretty darn stable!
rcav8or is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2002, 08:32 PM
  #6  
wsmalley
Senior Member
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (6)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Monterey, TN
Posts: 1,080
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default Aha!

I see those little dip switches tucked in there! I remember switching the switch from '+' to 'X' position but don't remember testing the elevator/aileon funtions. I'll check that out, though it makes sense. The plane appears to be doing what you described, it will appear to climb and bank-sort of 'porpoising'. The channel 7 is a rotary knob so that far left is 'off'. It's gusting here about 30 knots-so won't be testing today!
wsmalley is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2002, 12:31 AM
  #7  
rcav8or
Senior Member
My Feedback: (5)
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Oxford, IN
Posts: 905
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default Futaba PA 1 assistance

So, did it work? Did you get it working?

Inquiring minds want to know...

R
rcav8or is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2002, 05:00 PM
  #8  
wsmalley
Senior Member
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (6)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Monterey, TN
Posts: 1,080
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default It works!

Yes, I got it to work and I must say better than I had hoped. The problem was that the aileron dip switch within the unit was reversed. What I should have done was hold the plane overhead and CHECK that the aileron movement was correct for the direction that I leaned the aircraft over. When turning, it makes a much wider, shallower turn than one might expect since the unit is constantly correcting. I flew into a very stiff headwind one day using minimal throttle and rudder and it crawled along at about 3 mph. I have since moved it over into my Pilatus Porter with flaperons. That should be a blast as I'm hoping it will level the pitch up with flaps lowered. I wanted to buy another and discovered the PA2 only accomodates one aileron servo, where the PA1 has connections for two. Anyone know where the PA1 may be found? Apparently Futaba isn't showing it.
wsmalley is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2002, 05:13 PM
  #9  
rcav8or
Senior Member
My Feedback: (5)
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Oxford, IN
Posts: 905
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default Futaba PA 1 assistance

Ripmax in th UK, has a HAL2100, that is the PA-1. At least the one I used was. It had the dual-aileron set up. You can go to Ripmax and go to their price list section, then radios and accessories, then Hal Autopilot...all it shows is the price in pounds...you can contact them at Ripmax, and maybe have them send you info...it's the PA-1, unless they have changed it....

Once in a while, you find one here at RCU, or Ebay. I just bought one last week, the PA-1....
rcav8or is offline  
Reply With Quote

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service