You are currently browsing the archives for the The Building Table category.
The Allegro-Lite 2-meter glider I’ve just completed have taught me a number of things — some Allegro-specific, others model-building specific. I thought I’d share my thoughts here, in one place for the benefits of others.
The Allegro-Lite was a pretty advanced build for me (and I think for most folks!), so having only completed maybe a half dozen balsa kits beforehand, I still had a lot to learn. The Allegro is very exacting, and needs to be built as closely to plan as possible, so good tools and techniques (and patience) are demanded.
Read on for a listing of the tools and tips that I have amassed during my build…
I've always been fascinated with photography and videography, and what would be cooler and merging soaring that photography and videography? Following in the footsteps (and standing on the shoulders of) the RC-CAM 4 project, I set out to build a wireless video rig. With some diligent hunting on eBay and an order from Mouser, I had all the pieces-parts to complete the setup. The camera (an X10 XCam2) was only about $40 and the receiver was around $25 (I got a good deal). The extra pieces-parts I mostly had laying around, but in sum I think the whole rig probably ended up around $80 to complete.
Finally having a chance to work on it, I completed the setup last week and had a chance to test it out last Thursday, and finally do my first recordings this last Sunday during our Sunday fly. The all-up weight, including batteries for the camera module is a scant 3 ounces, and the range seems to be greater than 300 meters. Considering that it actually worked, it was a blazing success! The video signal was actually better than what I thought it would be, though it could stand for dramatic improvement and I intend in the coming weeks to improve the antennas for both the receiver and transmitter modules. For a first test, it was a great success.
Check out the two in-flight videos we recorded Sunday:
The first video, "BOT" is the camera strapped to Eric's (new) Bird of Time. The second is David Gruneisen's Kyosho Stratus (a powered sailplane). Many thanks to both of the pilots, and all who provided recording equipment.
* – NOTE:
In order to view these videos, you must have the DivX video codec installed. I would HIGHLY suggest downloading and installing the K-Lite Codec Pack, as it provides not only the DivX codec, but just about every other codec you are likely to encounter on the web, and a compact version of the Window Media Player. It's a great one-stop shop for everything you'll need to view video from the Internet.
Read the rest of this entry »
Johnny B just sent me a new photo of his new Sailaire. Only 2 years, 7 months in the making, but it's finally done! Here's what he had to say:
Whew, it's finally finished! It sucessfully flew last Sunday in high wind conditions and did pretty well during it's 8 test flights. It is definately a floater and takes a lot of field to get it to land, (ground effect) Well I guess no airplane in it's right mind wants to be on the ground right?
Also, I (Ben) just finished my recovering and restoration of a Majestic I purchased in May from a former LASS-mate. I managed to scrape a couple ounces off her frame, and hope to fly it soon. I'm pretty happy with my new covering job, and a little intimidated with it's 3-meter wingspan!
You can view larger photos of both of these by clicking on the photos above, or browsing around in our Gallery.
A group of LASS'ers (and a couple of CSS'ers) made it out to the Frankfort slope Sunday, and we all just so happened to have our Windrider Bats! I, Brian Kopke, Hank from Lexington, Ken Marks (and son Sam), Bruce Davidson, and Paul and Rudy Siegel had a rip-roarin' time.
The winds weren't spectacular, as the thermal activity was kicking up pretty well, so sometimes the Bats were floundering — I (Ben) nearly ditched mine in the field below, but Bruce's coaching helped me to send that thing sky-high in the approaching thermal. Hank didn't fair so well, unfortunately, as he did have to take the "drive of shame" a little later on. Hank, Brian and my bats all had their maiden voyages, and all survived to tell the tale. Young Sam Marks even got into the act with a buddy-box with dear-old dad. Both Ken and Bruce had their Milleniums out and Paul brought along his Icon and got their DS grooves on. Thanks to all that came out, and those that didn't — get there when you can!
Gordy sez: "This thing holds energy, heck grabs energy, like a Wizard Compact.
Goof up a turn at the top of the DS groove and usually have to bail out, not with the Bat, it just attacks the backside and groooooves the thru the front!
Talk about light lift flying….we had LIFT, but winds only at calm to 5mph, near dark tonite and we were still flying the Bat on the front and back..
I had a DS groove going 10mph, maybe less at one point and it wouldn't quit!
There wasn't enough on the front to go back out, but the Bat holds energy sooo well you swear it creates its own.
Take a few turns to get your head on what you are flying but then no problem.
The elevons work just fine, never felt that I couldn't bring it around even when I had some heat going.
This thing is worth every single penny and more!
Lots of fun ahead guys."
About a month ago, our man Gordy started a drive to get a bunch of Windrider Bats built and on the slope at Frankfort. Eventually, Gordy hyp-mo-tized a group of us with his salesman magic, and we had ordered something like 14 of these little beasts! Ming (the not-so-merciless) at Windrider also supplied us with nearly-full-span carbon fiber spars, so we could test out the dynamic soaring qualities of this relatively cheap kit.
Well, the Bats have been in for a while, and they are started to turn up built! Our man Bruce even had a chance to test one out on Monday at Frankfort. To quote: "WOW this baby really holds it's speed and flies like it is on rails."
I'd like to get more photos of completed or in-process Bats, so if you've got 'em, email to ben [at] thelocust [dot] org!