RCU Review: AeroPerfect Digital control throw meter

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    Contributed by: Richard Poe | Published: August 2005 | Views: 11933 | email icon Email this Article | PDFpdf icon

    AeroPerfect- Digital control throw meter

    Bell Electronic Technologies has developed a new way to digitally display the amount of throw you set up on your planes control surfaces. The digital readout features a very easy to read display featuring ½"high digits with up to .05 degree accuracy.

    It also features a sign indicator for displaying positive and negative angles.
    A blue backlight in the panel can be turned on with the touch of a button to light up the display if you desire.

    The heart of the system is a sensor unit, having a 360-degree range, which reports the angle of an object with respect to gravity.

    Also included are (2) 5-3/8"x 2-5/8"x 3/16" Foam padded plastic mounting plates, (2) nylon spring clamps and a power supply that plugs into a standard 120VAC outlet providing 12VDC of power to the digital display unit.

    The power supply has a 4'cord going to the Digital readout, and a 6' cord from the digital readout to the sensor unit.

    AeroPerfect also accepts a portable DC power source for making control surface measurements at the airfield.

    Attached to the underside of the sensor unit is one of the foam lined plastic pads, which is held in place with (2) recessed mounting screws. Self-adhesive Foam lines both sides of the other plastic pad. Spring clamps hold the pads and sensor unit in place without marring your finish.

    To use: Simply clamp the sensor to the control surface with the provided plate and spring clamps.

    Plug in the unit and power on the digital display. The push buttons power the unit on, reset the unit zero angle, and turn on or off the display back light.

    ** Digit segments show unevenly in the photos, but actually are of consistent darkness

    To the left of the display unit are (3) small LED's. The middle green LED comes on when the sensor unit achieves 0.00 degrees and turns off once you deviate from that position in either direction. There is also an audible click when the sensor unit has achieved 0.00 so you don't have to look at the display.

    As an added feature, the other two LED's indicate upper and lower degree ranges. The upper red LED illuminates after the sensor achieves + 25 degrees or more. The red LED will remain illuminated as you continue past +25 degrees and turns off again when you drop lower than +25 degrees.

    The lower LED works completely opposite from the upper LED. The red LED will come on when you achieve -25 degrees or more and turn off again when you are less than -25 degrees.
    (Remember the sensor is capable of displaying your settings through a plus AND minus 180-degree range!)

    The nice thing is that any time you press the reset button while the sensor is on any surface; you reset the display to 0.00 from whatever angle your control surface is at that moment. After resetting to 0.00 determined by your control surface (say in neutral), you can now read the exact angle of throw in either direction on your digital display as you adjust your surface deflection by radio or mechanical means to dial in your desired throws.

    The sensor unit weighs a bit over 8.5 ounces, which can cause some servo buzzing when left clamped to the control surface.

    There are two ways to you can use the sensor unit. You can move the control surfaces to their end points and hold the sensor unit on the control surface supporting most of the sensors weight with your hand as you read the display. This method would probably be best on the smaller planes.

    You can also clamp the sensor unit to the control surface as I did on the larger planes getting within ½ degree of where you want it. I also helped the control surface a bit to remove the buzzing and then read the display.

    Once you try it a few times and decide which method works best for you its really quite easy and accurate.

    Another great feature is the AeroPerfect can accurately set up separate elevator halves. This is usually a real hassle trying to set each half at the same neutral and have exactly the same throw in both directions.

    I set the elevator halves on the 35% Extra 300L by first setting trims and sub-trims to zero or neutral. Then I adjusted one half of the elevator to the neutral position.

    I then set the sensor unit on the neutral elevator half and pressed the reset button on the sensor to obtain 0.00 degrees. Since it remembers the zero setting from the first half, all you have to do is move the sensor to the second half and adjust your surface until you read 0.00. Both halves will now be at the same neutral point.

    Now that your neutrals are set, you can adjust your throws to exactly the same point in both directions by adjusting your EPA's (end point adjustments). Or, if you have both servos set up on separate channels, you can do this by using a Digital programmer or matchbox until you obtain the same degree setting on the display for both surfaces.

    Setup of rudder deflection requires the rudder to be horizontal while you use AeroPerfect and set your surface deflection.

    There is no need for me to go into great detail on setup and use of this product because the AeroPerfect web site is very good at covering all aspects of the unit's capabilities. It is one of the most thorough web sites I've seen for information on use of a product. The web site covers in detail, proper setup for each surface- complete with photos and explanation of every step.

    They also offer a free program to convert your surfaces deflection given in mm or inches and convert them into degrees.

    The AeroPerfect is easy to use. I set up the control surfaces on my 25% Katana and 35% Kangke Extra 300 L with good results the first time using it.
    The AeroPerfect will make a worthwhile addition to your workshop.


    Contact Information
    Digital control throw meter

    Web site: www.AeroPerfect.com
    Manufacturer: Bell Electronic Technologies

    Price: $199.00

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    The comments, observations and conclusions made in this review are solely with respect to the particular item the editor reviewed and may not apply generally to similar products by the manufacturer. We cannot be responsible for any manufacturer defects in workmanship or other deficiencies in products like the one featured in the review.

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