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Help! - Radio problems in flight

Old 02-21-2011, 10:18 AM
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flyingtomg
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Default Help! - Radio problems in flight

I flew my new pattern plane this morning for the first time. It's a composite fuselage (Sebart Wind S Pro) and I'm using an Aurora 9 with an Optima 7 Rx.

I did a range check before flying and all was fine. I took off and the plane was climbing a bit. After I got it trimmed so it wasn't climbing, I was just doing left hand turns. Racetrack around the field.

As I got to the farthest point out in the racetrack, I noticed the plane wouldn't turn. She was banked, but it wouldn't come around. I tried leveling the wings and I got nothing. This continued for a second or two and then all of sudden the wings banked (back to level) and the plane responded with not problems. I was a bit high, so I made another racetrack to get it lower before I came in. On this pass, the same thing happened at the same place. In a bank, no response to any control surface, then bang, all is working fine and I have control. I happened to be lined-up on the runway this time, so I brought it in. No damage to the plane. Lots to my nerves.

After calming down, I decided to range check the plane again. I took it to the end of the runway nearest where the plane was having problems and did a range check. This time, when I was ~150' from the plane, when I applied elevator and aileron at the same time, the elevator started jerking. Instead of smooth movements, it would jerk really fast to a position and when I'd let off, it would jerk back. This behavior went away as I got close to the plane again.

As you can see from the attached picture, the antenna is mounted on the bottom of the plane. The entire 'thicker' part of the antenna is outside of the carbon fuselage. I did think though, that when I'm making left turns, the bottom of the aircraft is away from me. Is the antenna being shielded by the fuselage and that's why it lost contact?

So my questions are:
1) Is the antenna in a bad position and I need to move it?
2) Is it something else? This plane has 5 digital servos. I run a Castle Creations regulator at 6v to power the Rx and Servos. I use a 1800mah (2s) pack for Rx power. This is a 10amp regulator.
3) Would switching to an Optima 9 with the two antennas help?

Thanks for any input you have.
flyingtomg
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:21 AM
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A.T.
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Default RE: Help! - Radio problems in flight


ORIGINAL: flyingtomg I flew my new pattern plane this morning for the first time. It's a composite fuselage (Sebart Wind S Pro) and I'm using an Aurora 9 with an Optima 7 Rx. I did a range check before flying and all was fine. I took off and the plane was climbing a bit. After I got it trimmed so it wasn't climbing, I was just doing left hand turns. Racetrack around the field. As I got to the farthest point out in the racetrack, I noticed the plane wouldn't turn. She was banked, but it wouldn't come around. I tried leveling the wings and I got nothing. This continued for a second or two and then all of sudden the wings banked (back to level) and the plane responded with not problems. I was a bit high, so I made another racetrack to get it lower before I came in. On this pass, the same thing happened at the same place. In a bank, no response to any control surface, then bang, all is working fine and I have control. I happened to be lined-up on the runway this time, so I brought it in. No damage to the plane. Lots to my nerves.
After calming down, I decided to range check the plane again. I took it to the end of the runway nearest where the plane was having problems and did a range check. This time, when I was ~150' from the plane, when I applied elevator and aileron at the same time, the elevator started jerking. Instead of smooth movements, it would jerk really fast to a position and when I'd let off, it would jerk back. This behavior went away as I got close to the plane again. As you can see from the attached picture, the antenna is mounted on the bottom of the plane. The entire 'thicker' part of the antenna is outside of the carbon fuselage. I did think though, that when I'm making left turns, the bottom of the aircraft is away from me. Is the antenna being shielded by the fuselage and that's why it lost contact?
So my questions are:
1) Is the antenna in a bad position and I need to move it?
2) Is it something else? This plane has 5 digital servos. I run a Castle Creations regulator at 6v to power the Rx and Servos. I use a 1800mah (2s) pack for Rx power. This is a 10amp regulator.
3) Would switching to an Optima 9 with the two antennas help? Thanks for any input you have. flyingtomg
1. Is the antennatip wire actually touching the CF fuse? this could lead to staticproblems with it bouncing against the fuse.
2. Power should not be a problem, did you lowest power level indicator show a drop at any stage?
Optima Transceiver (RX) - Low Battery Warning settings for both Aurora & Spectra 2.4Ghz module. Adjustable LBW Voltage Alerts V1.07 up (not available V1.04<06).
3. Peace of mind. .Optima Transceiver (RX) - BODA Antenna explained (post#4)

Only the Top Wire needs to protrude, then suggest vertically as shown:
Carbon Fiber Fuse... Report - from well known Glider Pilot and Fly RC author Mike Lee
Carbon Fibre Fuse...Report - High Speed DS

ex Hitec USA Support Forum Sticky:
Aurora 9, Spectra Modules & Optima Transceivers - FAQ & Undocumented Features
- Mixes, Setups,Tips. {Individual Links often updated}

Alan T.
Alan's Hobby, Model & RC FAQ Web Links

Old 02-21-2011, 11:54 AM
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flyingtomg
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Default RE: Help! - Radio problems in flight

Alan,
Thanks for getting back to me so quickly.

1) Yes, the silver part of the antenna does touch the fuse. I'll correct that.
2) Good to hear that power isn't a problem. I never got a low voltage alarm.
3) I will go for that piece of mind.

Can I more questions?

4) Why would having only the tip of the antenna outside the fuse be better than the whole 'thicker' part?
5) when I go to install the Optima 9, do you have a suggestion on placement? Top and side of the fuse? Side and bottom?

Thanks again.

Flyingtomg
Old 02-21-2011, 02:07 PM
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A.T.
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Default RE: Help! - Radio problems in flight


ORIGINAL: flyingtomg Alan, Thanks for getting back to me so quickly.
1) Yes, the silver part of the antenna does touch the fuse. I'll correct that.
2) Good to hear that power isn't a problem. I never got a low voltage alarm.
3) I will go for that piece of mind.
Can I more questions?
4) Why would having only the tip of the antenna outside the fuse be better than the whole 'thicker' part?
5) when I go to install the Optima 9, do you have a suggestion on placement? Top and side of the fuse? Side and bottom?
Thanks again. Flyingtomg
4. The Tip is the important receptor, without which there is effectively no range, the booster unit does not need to be exposed.
5. Optima Transceiver (RX) - Installation RX & BODA Antenna - good video included.

Alan T.

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