Category Archives: Learning

Motive-RC R8SB Telemetry Receiver on Taranis X-Lite

Motive-RC R8SB

I still fly lots of planes the old school way, without any flight controllers, so this Motive RC R8SB all-in-one receiver even though a D8, it allows me to use my Taranis radio transmitter and most of the features.  Add a voltage sensor and I am all set.  The receiver comes with various model type SBUS, physical channel PWM outputs, PPM and RSSI.  The RSSI warns me about the signal strength before I fly too far out.   Here is a video on how I add a RSSI bar to my X-Lite screen using the Motive-RC R8SB.

The R8SB is like the FrSky V8R7-II receiver but with telemetry functions.  It bound instantly and lights up like a green lantern. There are more pins than a usual receiver, but they are nicely color coded to help me determine signal, power and ground.  The upper set of pins are your 8 channels or SBUS/PPM.  The lower set of pins are RSSI, two analog telemetry ports (A1&A2), A1 for internal receiver battery voltage sensor, A2 for external battery voltage sensor (0~30V, 1~6S) and one digital data-stream port (Rx, Tx)…

F2S Autopilot GPS, OSD and RSSI All-In-One

F2S FC diagram

Amazing F2S all-in-1 flight controller, I think this is worth sharing.  The F2S coverts your fixed wing planes into a drone with GPS return home.  In addition, it adds all the telemetry information on your screen.  Best of all, no tuning needed.

We configure the F2S on an Eachine Mini Skyhunter Racer for this episode with a Mobius Mini. It does a nice turn on Return Home and circles in a 8 formation upon returning and begins to climb that 328 ft (100 m) preset. I have been flying this plane without Gyro, so at Manual mode, I still retain the full experience and know I can bail out at any time. The Mini Skyhunter is a fast plane, I noticed the Heading Mode seem to zigzag-drift occasionally, other than that, the rest is good so far. I get the most 11 GPS satellites so far. Here is a video of everything you need to get setup.

Pros – can be installed and tested under an hour, multiple flight modes and comprehensive OSD
Limitations or maybe good – little customization or tuning available or needed. Setup by radio, no computer required…

Understanding propellers directions on multicopters

If you find your multi-copter flipping on take-off or just don’t seem to take off, the first thing to check is your propellers or motors. If your propellers are spinning on the wrong direction, the thrust might just be pushing your copter down instead of lifting it up. If you have the propellers in the same orientation next to each other, it may just topple your copter. Propeller are usually marked with the spin direction and they should match the diagram illustrated below…

Radio Control Terminology and Abbreviations

Synopsis: I have been compiling a list of terminology and abbreviations over the years, some going back a long time ago when I was kid in the 70s. This list keeps getting longer each year, with new buzz words in the RC Drone arena. Hope this helps and thanks to many who contributed over the years.

2.4GHz – a.k.a. Spread Spectrum. The newest radio band available for R/C use. Operates at higher frequencies than noise. See also: FHSS and DMSS…

Learning to fly differences in quadcopters and fixed wings

I tend to just yaw (rudder) for a quadcopter to turn, even though I find myself always using the aileron stick to reduce a skid and create the effect of a turning plane when filming for fun. If you are spending your money on a camera gimbal, than you will probably be keeping your quadcopter as level as possible on all turns.

As for planes, they tend to bank over during a turn, so this changes how you actually use your sticks. The easiest way to understand turns is to visual the elevator as becoming more vertical (so it acts more like a rudder) and the rudder becomes more horizontal (so it acts more like an elevator) during a turn. The results of turns for most RC planes, the rudder really isn’t useful as a rudder except when you’re entering the turn (i.e. plane hasn’t banked over yet) or exiting the turn (i.e. plane is almost back to level). Some trainers actually recommend applying opposite rudder during the turn to keep the nose up for a smoother turn, since the rudder is acting more like an elevator. However in most cases, during the turn the elevator makes a perfectly good rudder and you can therefore just fly with ailerons and elevator with minimum throttle. Hope you got all that, as that was a early lesson I had before taking my first fixed wing flight…

On Screen Display MinimOSD and MinimOSD Extra

minimosd board

Virtual Cockpit HUD heads-up display using OSD, is any transparent display that presents data without requiring users to look away from their usual viewpoints. Displays a set of instruments to assist in flight. We use these early development board MinimOSD and MinimOSD Extra.

Battery A (VA)
This panel shows your battery voltage. To read correct values you have to set it in MP.
This panel has a warning assigned
MinimOSD-Extra can be set to warn you if voltage gets below the value you set in CT or OSD menu.
Landing Aid (small horizontal line on the right)
Ground level indicator. If you descent lower then home (like in a valley) the “-” sign would go above horizon line…

APM Arducopter Camera Gimbal Setup Mission Planner

APM

Synopsis: We have been skipping the ArduPilot Camera Gimbal page for a while, so finally we are back to revisit this feature. ArduCopter can stabilize a gimbal with up to three axis of motion using any of the free output channels. This really mades APM one of the best flight controller around.

As recommended, we did not connect the servo’s power (red) and ground (black) wires to the RC10 (A10) or (A11), as it may cause the APM to brownout when the servos move. Instead we rerouted the wires to power the servos from an external BEC from the APM’s rear power rail (Output 7) with the JP1 jumper removed. For this DJI Opto ESC, we needed a UBEC, we therefore used a 3A/5V on Output 8. Once you have your wiring done, you will use Mission Planner to setup your gimbal. If you plan to assign your Input Ch to RC6, please remember to complete a radio calibration with the dial you have assigned to RC6, if not you may see your gimbal behaving erratically.

That leads us to another favorite video putting the gimbal in action.  I had fun filming at the Pirate’s Cove.

Walkera Devo 10

Devo 10

Synopsis: We have been looking for a low cost quality transmitter. One transmitter does it all, the Walkera DEVO 10 2.4Ghz Digital Transmitter. Walkera DEVO 10 is one of the best priced versus performance radio system on the market. Usually for more channels, it cost more, now this DEVO 10 has 10 channels and comes with a RX1002 10-Channel receiver for under US$150! This DEVO 10 has a clear and easy to understand menu, the respond time is quick. Walkera placed a new computer chip inside the DEVO 10 and re-wrote the program menu, making it fast and responsive. It is one of the few transmitter that has telemetry functions.  Best of all you can deviate it to fly DSM2 and many protocols.

We like the DEVO 10 radio system alot and we recommend this to all RC modelers, we use all the 3 ways switches for different flight modes. You can use this DEVO 10 for the Walkera DEVO series helis, the famous QR x350 Pro, QR-Ladybird, Genius CP, Mini-CP and of course all diy builds!