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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Fitting a Guillow's Spirit of St. Louis with a 3 Axis Flight Controller

Guillow's Spirit of St. Louis

Product Description

Hobbymate 3 axis flight controller for Rc Airplane, Delta Wing, Gliders, Parkfly
Item Name: 3 axis flight controller
Working power: DC 4V -6V
Working current: 18mA
Transmitter compatible: PPM PCM 2.4G
Working temperature: -20℃~ 65℃
Dimension: 40 × 25mm
Weight: about 5g
Specially designed for RC planes, 3 axis gyro improves fly stability
Support common plane; delta wing; V tail 3 kinds RC models
Improve stability & flexibility
Remote control can shut down 3AXIS gyro system, convenient for skillful players to operate planes manually
Indicator light:
Red indicator blink: initial status.
Red indicator on: 3Axis radio in turn on status.
Red indicator off: 3Axis radio in turn off status.
Green indicator off: normal airplanes model.
Green indicator on: V-tail multiple control model.
Green indicator blink: Wing (Triangular empennage) multiple control model.
Assemble your planes completely before assemble the 3 axis gyro.
Shut down V tail & delta wing multi control function of radio, make the radio work for common planes.
Package Included:
1 x 3 axis flight controller
Sensitivity debug,we suggest that in lowest position in maiden flight,and according to add 5 mins range Each to process the Test flight adjustment.
When the flight controller factory settings,in 50% position,please do not put the set factory settings as standard,and adjust right sensitivity according to your airplane and power parameter. 
Weight:about 10.0
Working Volt:3.5-6v 
(As video Showed,it worked with 3D series Airplane,if you use not on 3D series,such as The glider and other small servo surface plane,the effect will not good as video showed,
Please purchase before serious consider.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great cheap flight stabilizerNovember 24, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Hobbymate 3 axis flight controller for Rc Airplane, Delta Wing, Gliders, Parkfly (Toy)

So far so good! Easy to setup. Hooked up to my delta in under a minute. Switch to activate works perfectly, and is a great feature for getting the gains setup perfectly.

The 3-pin Servo connections are laid out [ Signal - Power - Ground ]. They are not labeled on the case itself, but are easy to figure out.

I simply plugged in my 2 servos to their respective Ail1 and Elev outputs, and plugged my receivers Aileron channel into Ail In, and Elevator into the Elev In channel. Removed any settings I had in my transmitter for Elevon mixing, and flipped the Delta dip switch on the 3-axis Flight Controller. Turn the plane on, wiggle it around, and make sure the Elevons react in the appropriate directions. If not, reverse them on the flight controller. Test moving the stick on your transmitter to make sure the Elevons move as expected, and your good to go tuning! The AUX channel can be connected to any switch on your transmitter that you can set. It allows you to flip a switch to disable the gyro, making it very easy for test flying after adjusting your gains.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Autonomous Flight with a Cheerson CX 20 Drone

Yes one can fly the Cheerson CX 20 Autonomously - (Over a Predetermined Course) quite easily, although you will never discover this from reading the owner's manual (credit RC Groups Dogdude). You don't need telemetry, all you need is a copy of Mission Planner in your computer. Then you can program any mission from a PC or laptop then download the mission data to your CX 20, via a USB cable, you would need to change what one of the mode switches in the mission planner software, probably change the Altitude hold mode (1-2) to Auto or indeed any of the others to Auto mode. Flying a pre-programmed mission is easy: Set up the modes so that one of the switch positions is "Auto" Use the planner to plot your mission, setting way-point types and altitudes etc.

Load the way-points onto the CX-20 via a USB cable Go to your launch point, arm the CX-20 as normal (it won't arm in Auto mode). Take off as normal, switch to Auto mode and watch her go. Make sure your last way-point is near where you want to land, you can set the last way-point as land or loiter or whatever then take control back with the switches as required and perform a manual landing. It is also capable of fully Autonomous takeoffs and landings

Setting up your CX-20

CX-20 Manual:-

Getting Your New Open-Source Cheerson CX-20 or Quanum Nova Ready for Its First Flight

Tutorial by: Joey Mirabelli and Edward Byrne

In this guide, you will be:

1- Upgrading the firmware

2- Installing a better, tweaked parameter file

3- Fully calibrating your new quadcopter


Here is the link for Mission Planner download and install for Windows only. Make sure to let it install the drivers into your computer during the installation process.


Once installation is complete, open the software.


The new parameter file that you will be loading is here: https://www.dropbox.com/s/jojj406rk8mk9bi/UpgradedParams.param?dl=0

Please download and save the file to somewhere you can find it later. Do not rename it.


Plug in your CX-20 to the computer with a Mini USB. In Mission Planner, go to the top right corner and check your COM port. Make sure to select the one that says "ArduinoMega... or USB Serial Device" after it. The COM port is going to vary. There is no "right" COM port. Now, make sure your baud rate is on 115200.

If you are currently using or planning on installing telemetry, read these instructions. Download, extract, and save the below file. Then, go to Initial Setup> Install Firmware> Load Custom Firmware and then select this file. Let it load and continue with the tutorial. http://www.baronerosso.it/forum/attachments/multirotori-droni-rtf/326284d1429882655-quanum-nova-fpv-gps-waypoint-quadcopter-arducopter3.2.1-quad-apm2-custom.hex.zip

If not, continue here: With the USB still connected, go to "Initial Setup" on the top, then "Install Firmware". Now, click on the quad configuration and click yes. Wait for the firmware to load.

Note: Even though it says 3.3.2, the max it will load on APM is 3.2.1. That is perfectly normal.


Now that the firmware is loaded, you can go to the top right and click connect. Let it connect, then go to Config/Tuning> Full Parameter List> Load From File (top right).

A window will open up. Select that file we downloaded and saved earlier called "UpgradedParams.PARAM". Now, you should see green boxes in the list of params. Click the "Write Params" button on the right side and the green should disappear. You may get 1 or 2 messages, just click ok and disregard them.


Now you have to fully calibrate the quad after this file has been loaded in order to make sure all the offsets and endpoints are correct for your quad. To do this, go to Initial Setup> Wizard and follow this video: https://youtu.be/5JvVovI03d0


We're almost done. The last step is enabling compass learn so you don't have to calibrate the compass again. Go to Initial Setup> Mandatory Hardware> Compass. Find "Automatically Learn Offsets" at the top and select it. You don't need to click anything else.

Make sure to click "disconnect" at the top right of the page before unplugging anything. You are now fully calibrated and ready for flight. Good luck and happy flying!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Flying Tigers


The American Volunteer Group was largely the creation of Claire L. Chennault, a retired U.S. Army Air Corps officer who had worked in China since August 1937, first as military aviation advisory to Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek in the early months of the Sino-Japanese War, then as director of a Chinese Air Force flight school centered in Kunming. Meanwhile, the Soviet Union supplied fighter and bomber squadrons to China, but these units were mostly withdrawn by the summer of 1940. Chiang then asked for American combat aircraft and pilots, sending Chennault to Washington as adviser to China's ambassador and Chiang's brother-in-law, T. V. Soong. Since the U.S. was not at war, the "Special Air Unit" could not be organized overtly, but the request was approved by President Franklin D. Roosevelt himself. The resulting clandestine operation was organized in large part by Lauchlin Currie, a young economist in the White House, and by Roosevelt intimate Thomas G. Corcoran. (Currie's assistant was John King Fairbank, who later became America's preeminent Asian scholar.) Financing was handled by China Defense Supplies – primarily Tommy Corcoran's creation – with money loaned by the U.S. government. Purchases were then made by the Chinese under the "Cash and Carry" provision of the Neutrality Act of 1939.[1] Previously in the 1930s, a number of American pilots including Annapolis graduate Frank Tinker had flown combat during the Spanish Civil War, engaging Nazis and fascist Italians. Members were organized into the Yankee Squadron.

Flying Tigers – P-40 Tomahawk – Amazing WWII Color Pictures

The 1st American Volunteer Group (AVG) of the Chinese Air Force in 1941–1942, nicknamed the Flying Tigers, comprised pilots from the United States Army Air Corps, Navy, and Marine Corps. The shark-faced nose art of the Flying Tigers remains among the most recognizable image of any individual combat aircraft or combat unit of World War II.
The group comprised of three fighter squadrons of around thirty aircraft each. It trained in Burma before the American entry into World War II with the mission of defending China against Japanese forces. The group of volunteers were officially members of the Chinese Air Force.
The group first saw first combat on 20 December 1941, twelve days after Pearl Harbor. It demonstrated innovative tactical victories when the news in the U.S. was filled with little more than stories of defeat at the hands of the Japanese forces.
They achieved such notable success during the lowest period of the war for both the U.S. and the Allied Forces as to give hope to America that it might eventually defeat the Japanese. AVG pilots earned official credit, and received combat bonuses, for destroying 296 enemy aircraft, while losing only fourteen pilots in combat.
On 4 July 1942 the AVG was disbanded. It was replaced by the 23rd Fighter Group of the United States Army Air Forces, which was later absorbed into the U.S. Fourteenth Air Force with General Chennault as commander. The 23rd FG went on to achieve similar combat success, while retaining the nose art on the left-over P-40s.
Jack D. Canary Special Collection Photo
Jack Canary was a Tech Rep with North American Aviation in China during World War Two. After the War, he continued to work with NAA and also built and restored aircraft. He worked as a consultant on the film “Tora, Tora, Tora” and was killed while flying a PT-22 for the film in 1968. [via]
R.T. Smith next to the Disney “Flying Tiger” decal on the side of P-40 Tomahawk #40 in Kunming, China on May 23, 1942. [via]
R.T. Smith next to Chuck Older’s P-40 Tomahawk #68 in Kunming, China on May 23, 1942. [via]
R.T. Smith in the cockpit of P-40 Tomahawk #40 in Kunming, China on May 23, 1942. [via]
The photograph P-40 Tomahawk #49 flown by Tom Hayward of the Third Pursuit Squadron — Hell’s Angels — of the American Volunteer Group was probably taken from aircraft #47 on May 28, 1942 near the Salween River Gorge on the China-Burma border. [via]
Chuck Older and R.T. Smith after being decorated with the Fifth Class Order of the Cloud and Banner and the Star-Wing Metal in front of a P-40 Tomahawk at Yunnanyi, China. The photograph was taken on June 6, 1942. [via]
The photograph of the Third Pursuit Squadron — Hell’s Angels — of the American Volunteer Group was probably taken from aircraft #47 on May 28, 1942 near the Salween River Gorge on the China-Burma border. The shot of P-40 Tomahawks includes #68 flown by Arvid Olson, #46 flown by Bob Prescott, and #24 flown by Ken Jernstedt. [via]
The photograph P-40 Tomahawk #47 flown by R.T. Smith of the Third Pursuit Squadron — Hell’s Angels — of the American Volunteer Group was probably taken on May 28, 1942 near the Salween River Gorge on the China-Burma border. [via]
AVG Third Squadron P-40 Tomahawks #75, #96, #47, #22 and #35 parked at Kunming in May 1942. 

The airline:
The airline was named after the Flying Tigers fighter unit of World War II, officially the 1st American Volunteer Group. Ten former AVG pilots formed the Flying Tiger Line (originally called National Skyway Freight) after returning to the United States in 1945, using a small fleet of Budd Company C-93 Conestoga freighters purchased as war surplus from the United States Navy.[3] The pilots and two ground crew provided half of the initial investment, with the balance coming from California oil tycoon Samuel B. Mosher.[4] For the next four years, Flying Tiger Line carried air freight on contract throughout the U.S. and, as the airline expanded, carrying supplies to U.S. troops under Gen. Douglas MacArthur during the occupation of Japan.[4] In 1949, the Civil Aeronautics Board awarded Flying Tiger Line the first commercial air cargo route in the U.S., a transcontinental route from Los Angeles and San Francisco, California to Boston, Massachusetts. Shortly afterward, the company began chartering passenger aircraft for group travel as well; its Lockheed Super Constellation, Douglas DC-4 and DC-6 fleet comprised the largest trans-Atlantic charter operation through the 1950s.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Glider Retrieval System

Glider pickup
Waco CG-4 Gliders waiting for pickup by C-47 Aircraft

Did you ever wonder what happened to all those 1000's of gliders that were used to land soldiers and supplies in Normandy, The Netherlands and later in Germany?
Those that could not be repaired were discarded but because of the cost, $15.580 per glider, an effort was made to retrieve them for future operations.
Leon Spencer writes that to retrieve a Glider, two posts were erected with a nylon loop suspended from it, the Glider was attached to this loop. The tow plane would have a trailing wire with a hook which would catch the loop and the Glider would be airborne and could be towed back to England where it could be inspected and made ready for redeployment.
The architects of the U.S. Army Air Forces glider program determined in the spring 1942 that the large troop and cargo gliders under development were simply too expensive to be abandoned after one combat mission. The fields and pastures in which gliders landed were usually too small and the terrain too uneven for a plane to land and retrieve the gliders. Another means of recovery had to be found. To find an answer to their problem the Air Force turned to Richard C. du Pont, a 1930s national glider soaring champion and the president of our company (All American Aviation) of Wilmington, Delaware. Several years earlier, DuPont's company had developed an aerial retrieval system to pick up U.S. Postal Department mail pouches from the ground by an aircraft on the fly, and had demonstrated to U.S. Air Force officials at Wright Field, Ohio, on 18 July and 22-28 September 1941 that aerial retrieval of gliders was feasible.