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water proofing

Old 05-06-2007, 11:14 AM
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Default water proofing

is it possible to water proof a trex? i would like to make my heli an all weather flyer but i'm not sure how to go about sealing the ESC and motor without causing them to overheat. any advice is helpful, thanks.
Old 05-08-2007, 01:46 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

Fly it inside - 100% water proof unless the roof leaks
Old 05-08-2007, 02:38 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

What do you want to do? Fly it in the rain?
What is going to be your next question, how to waterproof your transmitter? What about standing in the rain with a lighting rod in your hands?

Ok, sorry, I could not hold myself. I know it gets frustrating to want to fly and the weather not cooperating, but the best advise is: DON'T DO IT.

There are a lot of things on a helicopter that can be damaged by water. Of course, electronics are the first thing. Bearings, metal parts (main shaft, tail shaft, linkages, ect.) that could rust and wood blades all come to mind. The task of waterproofing the helicopter would become almost impossible. Preventive maintenance will be a nightmare. And failed parts because of poor preventive maintenace will become an issue.

From your Trex manual, pay aprticular attention to the part about moisture.

Rafael

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Old 05-08-2007, 04:51 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

I want to fly mine underwater.

(sorry)
Old 05-08-2007, 10:24 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

Use an umbrella? Sorry, I couldn't resist either.
Old 05-09-2007, 06:55 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

made me laugh at loud.

ORIGINAL: devmode

I want to fly mine underwater.

(sorry)
Old 05-13-2007, 07:04 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

first, i don't appreciate the detrimental remarks. and second, im not talking about flying in a thunderstorm. as far as the bearings and shafts are concerned, a light coat of oil is good waterproofing. but if you all are just gonna razz me about the whole idea of flying in a light shower, i don't need that kind of input. also, as far as the level of maintanence i do on my heli is in direct relation as to what i do on the $16M Apache's that i have worked on in the past. anything can be all-weather. now, if you wanna give it some SERIOUS thought, let me know what you think, but please keep snide remarks to yourself, thank you.
Old 05-13-2007, 11:27 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

Your asking a rediculas question, and thats why you recieved the responses you did.
There is no way to keep water out of it. If you get the RX, Gyro, ESC or servos wet, they will likely quit working, and be a hazard to your heli and yourself.

Ok, so say you encased the RX, Gyro, ESC and servos in epoxy to keep out the water.
What happens when you need to adjust the gyro....the pots and switches will be epoxied in place.
The ESC will overheat for lack of cooling. There's no way to unplug or change servos, as the leads will be epoxied into the RX.
You cant encase the motor in epoxy...so its gonna get wet regardless.
The bearings will be shot in a month or less due to rust or lack of lubrication.
If you get one drop of water in that battery, or its connections, it will probably short, and either blow up, or at the very least render it useless.

You could of course put a full body kit on it, but how are you going to seal it around the rotor shaft and linkages? The tail rotor?

There is a big difference between a 35A electrical flying circuit, and a Apache helicopter. The Apache has no relevance.

Have you ever tried flying a heli in the rain? I have. I had a thundershower sneak up on me once while I was flying. Just trying to land was a pain, water droplets hitting the blades, make the heli do some really weird stuff. I landed quickly, and ran out and grabbed it. Dried everything off. Luckily it was only in the air for a few seconds.

Seriously, dont be impatient, wait for some good weather and fly dry.

Old 05-13-2007, 11:36 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

Maybe you could do something with plastic sandwich bags? I've seen (in nitro planes that are messy) RX's put in a zip loc bag and taped off or with a rubber band to keep the bag tight and closed where the cables come out. It works well enough to keep any fuel off the electronic. Of course those were not as expensive as a trex either though. Not sure how well that would work on a servo but on the gyro and RX it might be ok. Of course I don't know how cooling would be on stuff like the ESC. Or even wrapped in saran wrap. I'm not saying it would work - just tossing out ideas.
Old 05-14-2007, 08:27 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

Sorry man. I wasn't making fun of you - just adding a little unsolicited humor.
Old 05-14-2007, 08:47 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

The balloon trick should work for most of the electronics. (i.e. put them in an empty balloon and zip tie the end shut) it works for boats.

The servos would be easy enough. silicone all the seems,screws and use a heavy grease around the servo arm.

The battery,esc and motor will be the rather tough. Since we are not talking about making them water proof just water resistant. I think you could use a snap shut esc cover like they use on the gas powered cars and I don't see why the balloon trick or some kind of modified case wouldn't work. Just use alot of dielectric grease to keep the battery plug from grounding preferably keep battery connection inside case with battery.

Now for the tough one..the motor. The motor MUST have cooling air. So I would suggest leaving the bottom open and venting the sides so the air can circulate. My old EnforcerZR had a formed lexan bubble that protected the delicate parts. Just keep in mind that it would have to reach over the pinion and have a slot so the main gear and pinion can interact with the least amouint of water intrusion.

I would say it is very possible to do what you are asking. Give it a try, worst case scenario you crash and burn..but I do that anyway..
Old 05-17-2007, 02:32 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

why not try putting a small customized umbrella on top of your heli.. so, while fly, other than electronics,
you're also avoiding your blade from rain

Old 05-17-2007, 12:45 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

A scale fuselage might help keep water off of things. The motor won't care if it gets wet - it could run submerged if necessary, the water would cause a power loss because of the drag and it wouldn't be good for the bearings, but it won't hurt the motor. ESC and receiver are probably the only things you need to worry about if you are talking about light rain.
Old 05-17-2007, 03:24 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

I've flown my Blade CP in a pretty good rain and it held up pretty good except for the wind. I was lucky water didn't get into the electronics. My Rex is another story. I flew it in a light rain once and had to take it aprt to get it all cleaned up. Now my flybar is rusting. If you do try it in the rain, be ready for some disassembling. It's not al that smart, but it was pretty fun. It sure beats crashing in the living room.
Old 05-18-2007, 06:03 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

I agree with bdavison just be patient and let the weather clear. Why risk messing up a heli that you have hundreds of dollars in just to fly in the rain? We have all been there chomping at the bit *****ing at mother nature cause the weather sucks ( been doing that for 2 days straight now) but now nothing but clear blue skies expected today. Just my 2 cents
Old 05-18-2007, 07:17 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

On rainy days, why don't you just fly a simulator? If it makes you happy, ill host my simulator somewhere where ill let you download it! Now everyones happy!!!!!!
Dan
Old 05-18-2007, 07:21 AM
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Default RE: water proofing


ORIGINAL: bdavison

Your asking a ridiculus question, and thats why you recieved the responses you did.
There is no way to keep water out of it. If you get the RX, Gyro, ESC or servos wet, they will likely quit working, and be a hazard to your heli and yourself.

.

Seriously, dont be impatient, wait for some good weather and fly dry.


Best post here
Old 05-19-2007, 12:09 PM
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Default RE: water proofing


ORIGINAL: Raserx

The balloon trick should work for most of the electronics. (i.e. put them in an empty balloon and zip tie the end shut) it works for boats.

The servos would be easy enough. silicone all the seems,screws and use a heavy grease around the servo arm.

The battery,esc and motor will be the rather tough. Since we are not talking about making them water proof just water resistant. I think you could use a snap shut esc cover like they use on the gas powered cars and I don't see why the balloon trick or some kind of modified case wouldn't work. Just use alot of dielectric grease to keep the battery plug from grounding preferably keep battery connection inside case with battery.

Now for the tough one..the motor. The motor MUST have cooling air. So I would suggest leaving the bottom open and venting the sides so the air can circulate. My old EnforcerZR had a formed lexan bubble that protected the delicate parts. Just keep in mind that it would have to reach over the pinion and have a slot so the main gear and pinion can interact with the least amouint of water intrusion.

I would say it is very possible to do what you are asking. Give it a try, worst case scenario you crash and burn..but I do that anyway..
These are some good ideas but I don't think the motor can be protected. I think the downwash close to the ground would kick up a lot of moisture.
I use balloons for most of the electrics in all of my cars and boats. They are cheap and light but I use them to keep stuff clean. Just remember to check and change them often. You can never make them 100% water proof and if just a very small drop of water gets in, it is very difficult for it to dry out.
I do agree that you should not try it but please keep us informed on how you do it if you do.
Old 05-20-2007, 09:46 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

ok, i found an article on plasti-dip. basicly you dip whatever you want water proofed and it leaves like a latex barrier on that object. works great for servos, rx, and gyros. but there still has to be a way to waterproof ans ESC without losing airflow. i got to thinkling about it and i wonder if anyone has taken apart an Align 35A ESC and could tell me what is directly underneath that heat sink. i'm thinking brush on some plasti-dip andleave the heatsink exposed.
ORIGINAL: bdavison

There is a big difference between a 35A electrical flying circuit, and a Apache helicopter. The Apache has no relevance.
spoken like you never worked on a full scale, thanks but no thanks.
Old 05-21-2007, 08:48 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

pawraith:

Whatever you do make sure that you get it on video. I'll stay subscribed to this post to find out the results. I have a pretty good idea of what the outcome would be. Should be interesting.

spoken like you never worked on a full scale, thanks but no thanks
Are you talking here about the same helicopters that were catching fire during Desert Storm back in 1991? The newer ones might be better, but they needed to go thru a couple iterations to get it right. Go here for some inside information about me http://www.runryder.net/helicopter/gallery/1469/ Make sure to scroll all the way down.

Rafael
Old 05-21-2007, 09:20 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

Sweet pics on RR Raf, the apaches in there are some bad azz birds
Old 05-21-2007, 09:36 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

It can't be done. You need fresh air to cool the motor and BSC. You could find a way past just about everything else by using bags or dipping it in something or whatever, but you need to interact with the ennvironment for cooling. So, short of coming up with a heat exchanger and some sort of closed cooling loop it can't be done.
Old 05-21-2007, 09:48 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

Theoretically it is possible to do this. Plasti-dip this and that, the motor (provided that its brushless) can get wet and not suffer any damage. As for the ESC.... Have any of you seen the liquid cooling systems for desktop computers? Many people said it couldn't be done and yet nowadays many powerhouse gaming PCs feature liquid cooling. Seal up the ESC and get a liquid cooling system rigged up in there. HOWEVER!!!! with all that plasti-dip and the weight of the cooling system, good luck getting your bird off the ground.
Old 05-21-2007, 11:43 AM
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Default RE: water proofing

Whatever way you can come up with would just be a waste of time and may be pricey IMO. I know we all chomp at the bit to get out and fly but someone is that eager to fly when its raining, buy a CX2 or something to fly indoors
Old 05-22-2007, 01:11 PM
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Default RE: water proofing

Actually it would be a pretty simple matter; I have considered it myself as winter here is "The rainy season".

Back when I was into RC Cars we used to put the electronics in balloons to keep the water out when running through puddles etc. (You can also use rubber glove fingers).

The T-Rex speed controller it is already in heatshrink so you really only need to stop up the ends where the wires exit I'd tend to use latex calk since silicone glue has acid in it.

The heatsink is on the outside of the heatshrink on the speed controller (yea I know poor design), for the servos some grease around the shafts and black tape on the seams.

They make greases for boats etc as well that may be good.

Good Luck!


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